December 2011 – I remember when I was a kid, my mama would correct any of us children if we got really upset and blurted out that we “hated” someone. She would say it was okay to strongly “dislike,” but she would not let us get away with using the word “hate.” I don’t even think I could use the word to describe my feelings for asparagus.
The word hate is one of the most powerful words in the English language. Although we could not use it at all in our home, there is a place for the word hate. It’s appropriate when we show pictures of Adolf Hitler. Hitler hated Jews. It’s appropriate when we show pictures of men wearing the white hoods of the Ku Klux Klan. The KKK hates black people. When we talk about such people it is appropriate to use the word hate.
In October a group visited Tupelo, Mississippi, the hometown of AFA, to protest AFA with an event they called “Give Hate a Holiday.”
According to this group, AFA hates gays, lesbians, bisexuals and transgendered people.
As president of AFA, I totally and completely reject this slanderous charge.
AFA does believe that homosexual behavior is sinful. The Bible clearly says so. This has been the teaching in all branches of the Christian church for 2,000 years. Only recently have some liberal Protestant denominations begun to reject that teaching.
In the book of Romans, chapter one, Paul is writing about the wrath of God “against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth.” In verses 24-26 the Scripture reads:
“Therefore God gave them up in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, to the dishonoring of their bodies among themselves, because they exchanged the truth about God for a lie and worshipped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever. Amen!
“For this reason God gave them up to dishonorable passions. For their women exchanged natural relations for those that are contrary to nature; and the men likewise gave up natural relations with women and were consumed with passion for one another, men committing shameless acts with men and receiving in themselves the due penalty for their error.”
This is where Christians get the idea that homosexuality is sinful. The New Testament goes on to nail every single one us as sinners. Homosexual behavior may not be yours, but the sins that condemn you are in there and the sins that condemn me are in there.
What has happened the last 30 years in America is that homosexual groups have tried to force changes on society that have been met with resistance. They have tried to convince people that civil rights should be granted based on someone’s sexual behavior (a choice) in the same way civil rights should be granted based on someone’s skin color (not a choice). And if you are one who does not publicly affirm the lifestyle of homosexuals, then you are by their definition someone who “hates.” This is unfair, but this is how they frame the issue.
I believe most Americans agree with AFA. We do not believe in changing the legal definition of marriage to support two men getting “married.” Thirty-one states have voted on this and thirty-one states, including such liberal states as California, Oregon and Maine, have said marriage should remain legally defined as one man and one woman. As a candidate for president, Barack Obama was publicly opposed to homosexual marriage.
As far as the military is concerned, there is a good reason why there has always been a policy disallowing homosexuals. Where do you put them? The reason men and women don’t share showers or sleeping quarters is to avoid sexual temptation and tension that could break down discipline, order and morale. Men and women are rightly separated. Again, what do you with men who are open about their sexual attraction to other men? It is not right to force straight men to shower and bunk with gay men any more than it is right to force women to shower and bunk with heterosexual men.
Disagreement with the GLBT (gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender) movement on theological or public policy issues does not constitute hate. Reasonable people understand that.