The Gay Samaritan

A North Carolina pastor sternly warned against the danger of “butch” daughters, while advising dads to beat the gay out of their sons, literally:

The second you see your son dropping the limp wrist, you walk over there and crack that wrist. Man up! Give him a good punch.

Another pastor from the same state who, “Ain’t gonna vote for no homosexual-lover” has a plan to put queer folk behind an electric fence until they die out — all to keep them from reproducing any more gays and lesbians.

Hmmmm, aren’t gays and lesbians usually born to straight parents?

Meanwhile, a toddler sings, “Ain’t No Homo Gonna Make It To Heaven” to wild applause from his Indiana congregation.

No surprise, then, that gays are persistently tormented and too often commit suicide. In fact, suicide rates are highest in conservative “values voters” states where hatred is preached over the bully pulpit.

Pastor and gay activist Mel White, founded Soulforce to resist religion-based oppression. He asks:

What other source of homophobia is there but six verses in the Bible? When Bible literalists preach that LGBT people are going to hell they become Christian terrorists. They use fear as their weapon, like all terrorists.

Against this, the story of the Good Samaritan rings ironic.

The parable tells of a man who is beaten, robbed, and left for dead. Religious leaders pass him by, but finally a Samaritan comes to his aid.

The moral is generally said to be “aid one another” or “judge people by their hearts and works, not by their religious rank.”

But why would a Master Teacher like Jesus construct a story relaying the obvious?

Jesus’ parables more often shocked audiences into thinking in entirely new ways. Keep in mind that Jesus constantly urged his hearers to see the worth and dignity of all, no matter how loathed — including Samaritans, who were despised. So consider this perspective which I’ve altered from a blog post written by a pro-gay rights Mormon (!!)

Imagine Jesus telling a story that forces you to think the unthinkable — to string together words that simply do not belong together: “good” and “[insert epithet of choice].” If we want to understand how Jesus’ words invaded and overthrew the pious and staid beliefs of his hearers, we might imagine him telling a Christian congregation in North Carolina or Indiana the parable of the Good Gay Man who stopped to help a victim near death after a Catholic Bishop, a Rabbi, and a Christian Pastor first passed him by.

The moral of the Good Samaritan? Love gays, and anyone else whose humanity is not fully appreciated.

Related Posts
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Good Christians Should Abuse Gays
Gay Marriage Protects Marriage

About BroadBlogs

I have a Ph.D. from UCLA in sociology (emphasis: gender, social psych). I currently teach sociology and women's studies at Foothill College in Los Altos Hills, CA. I have also lectured at San Jose State. And I have blogged for Feminispire, Ms. Magazine, The Good Men Project and Daily Kos. Also been picked up by The Alternet.

Posted on October 5, 2017, in LGBT+ and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 24 Comments.

  1. The first sentence made me laugh, but only because of the stupidity of the pastor. People who preach hate of any sort are dangerous.

  2. Christopher J.

    Throughout history, people have picked specific passages in the bible to enforce, and specific passages to overlook. This hypocrisy has protected the patriarchy in households and society. As this post illustrates, those who preach their religion neglected to help a person in need, yet, in Hebrews 6:10 of The King James Version of the Holy Bible it says, “For God is not unrighteous to forget your work and labour of love, which ye have shewed toward his name, in that ye have ministered to the saints, and do minister.” The passage is telling those who are devout to their God to value, “work and labour of love,” which is saying they should should work towards loving and aiding others. Not only that, but also this excerpt is implying that no matter someone’s grievances with others, they should always project love in the name of their God. These spiritual leaders avoid servicing the man in need of assistance, going against the will of God. In the modern era, “value voters” are enacting the same hypocrisy through neglecting to accept gay and lesbians into society. The patriarchy is protected through “value voters” as a result of keeping women in houses to tend to ‘wifely duties’, like raising children, cooking, and cleaning. Through the suppression of LGBT acceptance, husbands and their wives who are “value voters” will continue believing and enforcing that there is one ‘man’ of a household and that gender stereotypes and roles must be upheld. Picking and choosing the passages of the bible to follow allow them to preach against ideas that will jeopardize the patriarchal structure of society, while going against teachings in the bible that are demonstrating working towards loving everyone.

    King James Bible Online. http://www.kingjamesbibleonline.org/Hebrews-6-10/.

    • Yeah, I know Christians who are FOR gay rights because the Bible says the greatest commandments are to love God and love your neighbor. Love > hate.

      • “Do not have sexual relations with a man as one does with a woman; that is detestable.” – Leviticus 18:22 NIV

      • The Bible is contradictory in a number of places. Jesus said the greatest commandment is to love — God and love your neighbor. Love > hate.

        Where two conflict, go with the greatest commandment.

        (Leviticus also says to kill gay people. Do you agree with that part of the scripture too? Or to kill sassy kids? To go into some community and kill all the people and take their stuff — and their virgins? …)

    • Patriarchy = Two Parent Homes, More Wealth, Social Stability, Higher Levels of Morality.

      Matriarchy = Single Parent Homes, Less Wealth, Social Instability, Lower Levels of Morality.

      You choose.

      • Nope. That doesn’t follow.

        Patriarchy = treating women unfairly, high levels of rape and battering… low levels of female self-esteem… I could go on

        Equality = healthy self-esteem and healthy relationships, higher levels of happiness. The happiest societies are the most egalitarian: Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Iceland… Iroquois before European contact… I could go on.

  3. The statement on Soulforce equating the homophobia spread by religious literalists to terrorism is an apt description for the phenomenon. Although some would argue that calling homophobic preachers terrorists is going too far, the fact that they help spread and enhance hate and terror leaves no other term to describe their actions. In the post above, when the North Carolina preacher promoted the idea of nothing less than a concentration camp for homosexual individuals, it became clear that the problem with the hate-filled part of America wasn’t a religious problem rather an issue of conflicting values. In the field anthropology, there is much emphasis on the fact that many civilizations aren’t as different as we tend to think because despite different traditions many of the underlying values are the same. With regards to the anti-homosexual movement in the US, the opposite is true. Despite similar traditions such as a predominant Christian society that has the basis of its belief in the Bible, many different values exist; how else would there be Christians who also follow the Bible’s teaching and yet lie on completely opposing sides of the gay movement? Setting a similar religion aside, the difference between pro-gay Christians and anti-gay Christians resides in an appreciation for the value of human life. Anti-gay religious zealots preach values of difference of worth between humans, some deserving of humanity and those that don’t deserve anything but ostracism and death. Religious people that harbor values of acceptance and compassion accept that every human has a claim to humanity and a right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Not only do the latter group’s values seem more in tune with the teachings of Christianity founder, Jesus Christ, but also better encompass national ideals as old as this nation itself. It is high time that the US returned to its founding principles and accepted diversity of tradition and unity of values.

    • Yep. Jesus: Do unto others as ye would have done unto you… even as ye have done unto the least of these ye have done it unto me… love is the greatest commandment.

  4. good one…. there are fanatics every where!!!

  5. It shocks me to no end how persecuted gay, lesbian, trangender, and busexuals are. People think beating someone will act as some sort of cure for homosexuality? I personally know the bible story of the good samaritan. It’s sad that noone would help the beaten man on the side of the road. The samaritan’s kindess is an act we can all learn to follow. As a christian woman who supports equal rights for the LGBTQ community, this article appalled me. I like where they talked about recognizing ‘the worth and dignity of all’. If we could all just learn to help those in need, or make friends with someone unlike ourselves, this planet would thrive.

    • The world is gradually moving — in fits and starts — toward recognizing the dignity and worth of all. Sad that some seek to put others down to bring themselves up (though really when you have that attitude you’re still very much down.)

  6. It’s astonishing to hear so much hatred and bigotry towards the LGBT community from people who constantly insist on the value of loving one another as thy neighbor. Atrocities committed by these groups who are so resistant to accept those who are different from them that a pastor would advise a father to beat his own son for being gay or people struggling to be themselves in a “value voter” state would be driven to suicide continue to shock me living in the Bay Area all my life, where the LGBT community can generally find a home. Like we are isolated from these fervently religious groups in Indiana and North Carolina and their beliefs, they are isolated from us. While the media helps to spread awareness of the LGBT community nationally, the cultural differences between states keep us incredibly divided.

  7. I was in awe reading this article. The way a conservative pastor expresses his hate for the innocent by encouraging others to “hit the gay out of them” shows how close minded people, LEADERS, can be. It baffles me that a pastor who is supposed to show maturity in leading people evokes hatred and violence. For the boy, singing “aint no hommo gunna go to heaven” still leaves an unsettling thought. In the Bible it clearly states that if one were to hit you on the cheek you turn the other cheek, forgive him and walk away. Jesus was preaching lessons of forgiveness and how there is no need for violence in any circumstance, even when you seem to be the one being hit. I also think the good samaritan is a way of saying love everyone even your considered enemies. In this way I think the pastor is not only encouraging physical violence but summoning emotional abuse. Today we should have learned by now, after all the wars, revolutions and protests that there is no good in violence. People should be able to embrace who they are without fear or shame. Whether it is the color of their skin or whom they chose to be intimate with we as humans should embrace the diversity not diminish it.

  8. The story of people of faith being against LGBTQ+ communities is as old as time. People of faith, especially Christianity have always turned their back on this community because they believe it to be one of the greatest sins as so said in the Bible. But for some of us, we know that Jesus did teach for people to love one another and not to be quick to judgement. Certain cultures and religions will continue to be anti-gay but there are people who have come a long way from what they were taught to believe to what they believe now. People have become more and more accepting over the years the more the LGBTQ+ issues are brought to light in mainstream media.
    However, in some African countries, their culture is worth more than faith. They follow their beliefs and laws of the society and therefore cannot change their minds on the issue because it is what their ancestors believed and in turn so do they. A lot of kids will never speak of their sexuality and will do their best to hide it for fear of being outcast from their community and in some cases, arrested, raped and imprisoned. It is still a belief that being gay is a lifestyle choice and that people can be fixed.
    So where as awareness on the matter is getting better in the States like California, it is still a non starter in some African countries and also some Arab countries too. And this shows just how far we as the human race have to go in terms of acceptance.

  9. MirandaCaitlin23

    I think its unbelievable that we still have people filled with such hatred in our word today. The idea that someone could be torn down and beaten both physically and mentally for who they are sexually attracted to, makes me sick to my stomach. Growing up in a unitarian church, I was always taught to love my neighbor and look past the top layer of their person. I was raised in a healthy family who was accepting of everyone, and I genuinely think thats a huge reason I’m not filled with so much hate.

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