Saturday, August 31, 2013

Sex, Lies and Pat Roberston

Pants on Fire
Pat Robertson continues to be one of the worst human beings alive. I'm not saying this because I'm gay. I'm saying this because I am a rational human being. 

Listen, I have no problem admitting I am a Secular Humanist. I also have no problem with people who are religious. I have a dear friend of over 35 years who is an Episcopal priest. My own sister is a devout Christian. Neither of them have condemned me to hell because of my innate sexuality. They take the New Testament at it's word: "Love thy neighbor as thou wouldst love thyself." They also know that many of the things in the Old Testament were written before the rise of Science and Reason.

But there are plenty of uninformed, frightened and honestly ignorant 'Christians' who fall for the kind of fear-mongering their religious leaders use to keep them in line (i.e. 'donating'). These preachers continue to use and abuse the Bible to further their own agendas, threatening their followers with eternal damnation if they don't agree with their vitriol. Among the worst offenders is Pat Robertson, who hosts the "700 Club" (founded by the very publicly disgraced Jim Bakker). Robertson's obviously loony claims include telling a woman whose husband had cheated on her that she should make a home so nice he wouldn't want to stray. But earlier this week, Robertson made what is probably his most insane claim, ever:

"The Stuff" to which Robertson refers is HIV/AIDS. And while there are admittedly a very few equally insane people who do want to infect others and even fewer and even more insane folks who actually seek out infection (more on that in another post, someday), Robertson's story about HIV+ people in San Francisco using special rings to infect innocent people with AIDS is probably the singularly most preposterous statement I've ever heard. And I'm not the only one to think so:

Thankfully, the folks at CBN (The Christian Broadcasting Network) recognized Robertson's ramblings as false and didn't air that particular segment, but that didn't stop his hateful claim from being posted online for everyone to see.

Personally, I don't understand how any educated person in the 21st Century still believes that homosexuality is a product of demonic possession; the result of sexual abuse; influenced by other gay people or a deliberate choice. Having never been possessed, abused, influenced nor having deliberately chosen my sexuality (as has no one else, ever) I find myself both alternately wanting to punch Robertson in his nose, asking him when he 'chose' to be straight and sitting down with him and explaining just how wrong he is.

Here's the thing: As long as there are superstitious, uneducated people, Robertson and his ilk will continue to influence their opinions. Using fear; threats; misinformation and outright lies to propagate prejudice, people like Robertson, Vladimir Putin, the most recent former Pope; the head of the ROC; Robert Mugabe and various Hindu and Muslim leaders will do everything they can to keep their followers from recognizing Truth.

Ignorance is not bliss, folks. It is death. Thankfully, the tide seems to be turning and with the recent SCOTUS rulings, the U.S. is well on the way toward joining the 21st Century in recognizing that LGBT people are deserving the same Human Rights as our straight counterparts. For the first time in my lifetime, I have hope that I will not die a second-class citizen, something I honestly never thought I'd live to see. The times are indeed, a-changing. 

I just hope that those who refuse to accept reality will eventually realize that if they don't grow, learn and accept the truth, they will leave a legacy of ignorance and hate for future generations to scorn and ridicule.

More, anon.

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