Reposted from Blogger
Yes, They Are Bigots – October 10, 2007
Barely coherent rant alert…
I was driving to my girlfriend’s place from work at about 3 pm today. I was scanning through the radio stations, when I came across someone talking about gay marriage. I always enjoy controversial topics, so I stay on the station for a minute. Fairly quickly, I realize the people talking are definitely against gay marriage. Mostly for religious regions, it appears. Obviously people I disagree with, but for some reason I ended up listening to the discussion for the entire 35 minute drive.
The hosts of the radio show (89.7 FM, which is either out of Baker University in Baldwin City, KS or it’s a station in Great Bend, KS) spent the half hour that I was listening talking about the issue with each other and several call-in guests. Now, I understand that there are people who don’t like gay people. But, it never fails to baffle me how people like that can justify their bigotry.
As I listened, several things stood out to me. First and foremost was the underdog mentality. To the people on this show (I never did catch the name of the show), the “gay agenda” is being foisted on them by a vast left wing conspiracy of “activists.” Repeatedly the word “juggernaut” was used. To these individuals, it is almost inevitable that gay marriage will soon be forced upon an unwary and apathetic populace. A common mentality among all sides of pretty much any political debate is that everyone is an underdog (of course, with the silent support of the the majority of the populace) and they are fighting the good fight against an implacable and unstoppable foe. The anti-gay hosts and callers of this show had this particular mentality in abundance. Despite the fact that a depressingly large majority of Americans seem to be against legal marriage for gays (according to recent polls).
Another common theme was the resentment. Resentment that people who are anti-gay are often labeled as bigots. The hosts mentioned several times that they don’t appreciate being compared to racists. They cite their support of interracial relationships as a sign of their lack of bigotry. Implicit in this observation is the unspoken statement that gay people are okay to discriminate against. They are apparently somehow less important or more dangerous than other marginalized groups of people. The hosts of this radio show seem to think gay people are less worthy of being treated like every other human being. That they are not worthy of the same rights as “straight” people. And why is that? Because the Bible says that gay people are inherently immoral. Because most conservative religious movements are afraid of or genuinely hate homosexuals. The hosts of the radio show that I listened to believe that people’s personal consensual relationships are reason enough to deny the same rights everyone else has to one group. What gay people do is apparently their business. And they feel that the “gay agenda” is a movement intended to corrupt their idea of civilization.
Scary stuff, as far as I’m concerned. As I’ve said before, I’m not naive enough to be surprised by this. But the way people justify fear and ignorance still astounds and disgusts me. And yes, wanting to deny millions of people the same rights that the rest of the country gets because of their personal sexual preferences is bigotry. Some people just seem to have the urge to tell other people what to do. To tell other people not to be who they are. It sickens me. And when someone criticizes this bigotry, the bigots claim that THEY are the ones being discriminated against.
The hosts of the radio show seem to want the country run as a conservative Christian theocracy. One where millions of people would be treated like second-class citizens because they are different. Because they don’t conform to a narrow world-view. That’s not bigotry? What the hell? And when they mention the Constitution, the hypocrisy makes me nauseous. That little part about not basing any laws on religious reasons appears to elude these people.
I know, I know. There are many religious people who aren’t that ignorant. There are, in fact, many religious gays. That’s fine, but it scares me when people espouse the notion that millions of people are unworthy of marrying each other because of what’s written in a book. And the number of people who feel this way is vast. Possibly a majority of the United States.
The hosts of the radio show somehow feel that their “way of life” is being threatened. Because the “sacred institution of marriage” is being opened up in a handful of states to all citizens, these bigots think that gay people are fundamentally bad people, or at least morally inferior to heterosexuals. And then they cry when they are compared to racists. My goodness, how can they miss the hypocrisy?!
Before I let this rant get too out of hand, I better stop. I just want to conclude with an observation.
When people from other countries worry that America is full of crazy bigots and hate-mongers, this kind of thing is part of the reason. It isn’t helping our standing in the international community. Ignorant fear doesn’t solve problems or make friends. but, I guess to some people, that doesn’t matter.