Christianity and the LGBT Community

I finished Exodus, but there won’t be a review of it. There’s so little of interest that I don’t think it would be worthwhile. Although it does have it’s good points. Such as 23:1-2, “You shall not spread a false report. You shall not join hands with the wicked to act as a malicious witness. You shall not follow a majority in wrongdoing; when you bear witness in a lawsuit, you shall not side with the majority so as to pervert justice”. There’s even more, like not cheating the poor and not taking bribes, but I won’t bore you with everything. Anyway, Exodus 23:2 will show up again.

 

So, on to the actual post. I recently had the privilege of being told that Christians cannot be true friends to non-Christians and cannot be real allies to the LGBT community. In the conversation, my goal was to show that Christians are not evil by default and that we can be and are allies. Some of us actually belong to the LGBT community. Imagine that. I know why these people are anti-Christian as I have been there too. When I was anti-Christian, it wasn’t from anything personal. Far too many people have lost their homes and families from bigots using the Bible to support the hating of someone different. I haven’t read enough just yet to start to show why their bigotry really isn’t that clearly supported by the Bible. Anyway, I understand that some LGBT people have been badly hurt by Christians. I’m not even going to ask them to get over it. I want to be accepted into the LGBT community because I’m a transwoman, one who happens to be Christian. I should not have to prove that I’m not evil.

 

My own break with Christianity was about 15 years ago. I was attending a church that was very cult-like. Likely was a cult. At the same time as I’m trying to disengage from them, I run head long into the likes of Pat Robertson and his ilk. Now, keep in mind that at this point that I think I am a straight, white male. I could not stand how these idiots were treating those in the LGBT community. Simply, I could not be a Christian if it required me to hate people. So, I drifted through different religions. Up until the middle to end of last year, I was a pagan. It took me years to get over my hatred of Christianity, but I did. I got myself into trouble, as a pagan mind you, by defending Christians. I had seen that they are not all evil people who hate anyone different from them.

 

Now, I refuse to agree with a majority when I think it is wrong. I have felt this way for a long time. Maybe I’ll be quiet about it, maybe not. The one thing that I simply cannot stand is seeing someone get the short end of the stick. It is nice to know that my faith backs me up in standing up for the rights of minorities. Would I stop even if doing so was against my religion?  Yes, without a doubt. I would not be able to practice a religion that would prohibit me from standing up for others.

 

The long and short of it is that we cannot discriminate against Christians. That is just as wrong as certain Christians discriminating against us. No more, no less. And there are the practical concerns. We can’t afford to tell a, rather large, group of people that they aren’t good enough to support us.

Genesis

Sorry about missing last week, I don’t know what happened. I will try harder to not miss a week again. I should create a schedule for myself and stick to it.

 

Anyway, I am a Christian, as I have said before, and one of my resolutions this year was to read all of the books of the Bible by the end of this year. Surprisingly, that means means only reading a few pages a day. So, recently, I finished Genesis, the first book of the Bible. Oh, warning, I am not a literalist. I believe, very strongly, that the Bible is a product of the time it was written and of the many writers. To read it using today’s norms, is foolish at best and disingenuous at worst.

 

So, the first thing I want to point out is that, at least in the first book, marriage is not defined as one man and one woman. Abraham had two wives at the same time, his grandson, Jacob, had four. And that isn’t even touching on what ‘traditional’ marriage requires. Any guys up for sleeping with your sister-in-law so your dead brother can have an heir?  Believe it or not, that is a requirement of marriage. See the story of Onan in chapter 38. His brother died without an heir, so he was required to produce one for his brother. He didn’t want to, because if his brother had no heir, his brother’s property would become his. So, he spilled his seed. For some reason, it is only that last bit that gets focus, not why he did that. God was mostly angry because this guy was a greedy bastard.

 

There is plenty of evidence in Genesis that the God of this book of the Bible is one of many and is a local god. God is not gendered, even though traditionally God is he. Both men and women were made in the image of God. If that is the case, how can God be gendered?  Personally, I think that many people artificially limit the Christian God without realizing it. Also, why does there need to be only one deity?  The commandment later on only says to not put any other god before God.

 

One of my favorite parts is Chapter 1, verses 29 and 30. In it is a prohibition on eating meat. Plants were given to humans and animals for food. That’s right, all animals were herbivores in the beginning. It’s not until after the flood that we gain the ability to eat meat. Speaking of the flood, after the flood, Noah invents wine and gets drunk. While he was drunk, Ham saw his father naked and told his brothers. There is a possibility that Ham also had sex with his father and the crime that he committed was not protecting his father’s honor while drunk.

 

One of the other parts of Genesis that I like is the tower of Babel. When God decides that the tower must be destroyed and the people scattered, the reason is because, together, we could do anything. Think about that for a minute, even in the Bible, there is an acknowledgement that, if we work together, there is nothing beyond our grasp. But that is a big if. When we work together, great things happen, so why don’t we work together more?

Trans ‘Jokes’

First, let me apologize for not updating. Holidays did me in. Far too much to do and far too little time for all of it. That said, the holidays were great and I hope all of you reading this had a wonderful time as well.

 

Now, on to the this week’s topic which is all about jokes about transgender people. Or, well, the one joke about being transgender, as there is only the one. The joke is always some variant whereby trans people are said to not be how they identify as. A recent one I saw was the State Farm commercial with this script, “Jake from State Farm at 2 in the morning, who is this?  Call me Caitlyn.  She sounds hideous. Well, she’s a guy, so.”  This isn’t any different from TV shows and the punchline of the joke being that the woman was a transwoman and so isn’t a real woman and how she ‘tricked’ one of the regular characters. Even Jeff Dunham did it once.

 

Now, I know what is going to happen, I will be told to not take it seriously. Told to ‘toughen up’ or ignore it. I can’t ignore it and I do take it seriously. One of the things that I have learned in my life is that words are important. Words have power. They are how we shape our thoughts and our thoughts shape our actions. What is ‘known’ about the trans community?  That we aren’t who we say we are and all we want to do is trick people for sex. Most people, if they know anything about transgender people, know only this joke about us. This is what is shaping their thoughts about us. Shaping their actions towards us.

 

We know words are powerful, though we often forget that. A therapist uses only words to heal and I can personally attest to the ability to both heal and harm. In fact, words can cause more damage than any physical beating. A physical assault can lead to death, a verbal one can lead to years of suffering and wanting death. People don’t want to believe this or that words have power, because if they do, then they would have to watch what they say and how they say it. It’s easier to ignore the power of words so you can throw them about carelessly.

 

Now, back to the ‘joke’. If people thought about the this supposed joke is saying, maybe they wouldn’t find it so funny. If it applied to them, they would want it to die. So, what does this joke say?  It doesn’t take much to see the core of it is that transwomen aren’t women. Often, the joke then goes on to say that transwomen want to deceive men. To which I can only say bullshit!  I am a transwoman and just as much a woman as any other woman. Yes, I am attracted to men, though not all transwomen are. But I could never be with someone who didn’t know fully who I am.