“The good news is that there’s 50 less pedophiles in this world, because, you know, these homosexuals are a bunch of disgusting perverts and pedophiles. That’s who was a victim here, are a bunch of, just, disgusting homosexuals at a gay bar, okay? And then I’m sure it’s also gonna be used to push an agenda against so-called “hate speech.” So Bible-believing Christian preachers who preach what the Bible actually says about homosexuality — that it’s vile, that it’s disgusting, that they’re reprobates — you know, we’re gonna be blamed. Like, “It’s all extremism! It’s not just the Muslims, it’s the Christians!” I’m sure that that’s coming. I’m sure that people are gonna start attacking, you know, Bible-believing Christians now, because of what this guy did.I’m not sad about it, I’m not gonna cry about it. Because these 50 people in a gay bar that got shot up, they were gonna die of AIDS, and syphilis, and whatever else. They were all gonna die early, anyway, because homosexuals have a 20-year shorter life-span than normal people, anyway.”
— Steven Anderson, preacher at Faithful Word Baptist Church, Tempe, AZ in response to the slaughter in Orlando.
I felt like I had been dipped in sewage just reading that, and dipped again posting it. If Steven Anderson wants to talk disgusting, I suggest he get in front of a mirror. It was just a short while ago that I brought up in a thread here that a lot of people (Americans in particular) still believe in the gay man equals pedophile canard. And there it is, in neon arrogance, the self-righteous judgment smug only Christians can work up into such a fine froth. There were women who died in Orlando. There were hetero people who died in Orlando. There were queer people who died in Orlando. Some of them were parents. All of them were loved. But here’s the same old Christian crap of old, disease riddled predators. Naturally, the only thing Anderson is truly concerned about is whether or not people might start looking at him sideways, possibly accusing him of hate speech. Oh, and of course, us lefty pinko commie rainbow warriors might take his bible away. Disgust, thy name is Steven Anderson, and all those like you.
Radical right-wing Christians must recognize the part their anti-gay rhetoric, legislation, hate speech and repeated attacks on the LGBT community played in the slaughter at Pulse Nightclub in Orlando. Yes, the terrorist homophobe who reportedly pledged allegiance to ISIL before he repeatedly pulled the trigger deserves all our anger and outrage. We will hear plenty about his radicalized religious beliefs in the coming days, but that is likely all the religious analysis we will hear in the media. But, we cannot let religious ideologues in the far-right Christian camp off the hook. Steven Anderson is not an anomaly. America has been painstakingly codifying beliefs he expressed into law. Polished politicians blunt the edges of Anderson’s words though the language of legislation but the hate and fear remains.
They will claim the assertion they have any role in the massacre as an attack on their religion – much like the consistent and well-orchestrated “war on Christmas” we heathens rage every year. They will tell you that their prayers are enough to overcome this act of terror. They will tell you Jesus wants you to arm yourself. “Get your guns before Obama takes them.” They will tell you this is about radicalized Islamist terrorists. They will whistle away the notion that guns or gays had anything to do with this tragedy.
And here is a major problem. Along with people busily straight-splaining, the rest are focusing on that terrible Muslim problem, because that’s the only terrorism that counts, and this was oh-so-definitely Islam based (even though it wasn’t), but you have a lot of Christians bristling over the idea that they might have had anything to do with this. Abrahamaic based religions all have the same root, and they have the same deep-rooted bigotry. How that bigotry is expressed isn’t the important bit – it’s why this expression is being allowed in the first place, why so many people who don’t have a personal stake in the current Christian war on all things queer, sit idly by, maybe let a small tsk escape their lip, shake their head, and decide to do nothing at all. Here in the U.S. open bigotry is being turned into law. People act like politicians spilling the most awful, bigoted bile is simply entertainment, yet another bad reality show.
The multitude of ways right-wing Christians discriminate against and kill – directly or indirectly – LGBT people can be incredibly nuanced.
Around the country LGBT couples are fighting for the right to adopt children. HIV is criminalized around the country putting a big red X on gay men and others. Gay men – by law – cannot donate blood. Most people didn’t even know that until Orlando. Federally funded abstinence-only programs populate our public schools masquerading as sexual education. What the actually do is preach sexual purity until heterosexual marriage, and they stigmatize girls and LGBT kids. How about the Great Bathroom Panic of 2016? It isn’t secular humanists behind these laws and programs; it is right-wing Christians serving in state and national office.
What message is all of this sending to our LGBT citizens? That you are less than, you are poison, your blood is tainted even if it’s not, you are after our children, you cannot love who you love. The message coming from the far right is “We Hate You”. Donald Trump gloat-tweets, Paul Ryan doesn’t mention guns or gays in his statement – just Islamic terrorists. The GOP’s (political party of choice for the far right Christian camp) presumptive presidential nominee and the US Speaker of the House deny any connection between the slaughter at Pulse and anti-gay hate crime.