Saturday, March 18, 2006

No Slaves Taken from "Gayland"

I had lunch the other day with a pastor from an adjoining city here in the greater Los Angeles area. One thing about life in the "Southland" that can be a bit disorienting is that fact that adjoining towns can be so dissimilar economically and ethnically. For example, where I live, the cities of Temple City and Arcadia are now over 60% Asian (mostly Mandarin-speaking Chinese). Go south over the town line to El Monte, and that city is 70% Hispanic.

Go to my friend's city, and it's a third African-American. He's black (with movie star good looks to boot!) and his church is a grand old African-American congregation. He was raised in the church, and on the "History Wall" in their fellowship hall, there's a picture of him as a child--with Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

So there's no doubt that he has "cred" when it comes to Civil Rights Issues. So where does this African-American (and ABC) pastor come out on the issue of homosexuality and civil rights?

"I was at our local ministerial meeting last week," he recounted. "We were talking about the association's Martin Luther King, Jr. Day observance. It was a grand time.

"We brought in [a certain speaker] who mentioned something about how it wasn't right to equate racial equality with the homosexual issue--he said it just in passing.

"Well, another pastor in [that city] said to me that he was offended by that. He said that he was gay, and that he saw the struggle of gay people for equal rights as an extension of the Civil Rights Movement.

"Funny, I thought. Your ancestors weren't kidnapped from Gayland from their gay parents and put on a ship through the Middle Passage. They didn't work under the lash of straight slaveowners from over three hundred years.

"It's an insult to African-Americans to say it's the same. It's not. It's not what my Bible says. And I'll stand with the Bible."

Well said, friend. Stand with God's word. That's the call.

1 comment:

Dave Miller said...

Nice post. As the husband of an African American woman and having a gay brother in law, I get to see both sides.

The civil rights issue has never had alot of traction with me or my wife's family.

FYI, Charles Krauthammer had an interesting POV this last weekend on the issue. He brought up the view of polygamists that if gay marriage is a right, why not polygamy? His logic was very good and begged some of the same questions that I have posed to my brother in law. As you might imagine, I am still waiting for some responses.

All of that said, I wish there was a way to reconcile all of this and maintain community.

Thanks for your blog. As a fellow ABC'er I read it regularly.