Friday, July 12, 2013

Why I'm Not A Christian

Sexy singer/songwriter Steve Grand went from virtually unknown to viral with his country song video for "All-American Boy", about unrequited love. It's touched and captivated thousands, and blown up the internet racking up over a million views on youtube in just over a week.

Steve is a former cover boy for a magazine I write for, DNA.
Click here to back order issue #127 for his 10-pager!

In an interview with Good Morning America, Steve mentioned how when he came out in 8th grade, his parents put him into an ex-gay conversion program. He survived that destructive nonsense, and in coincidental (great) news, Exodus International, the largest and most insidious of Christian ministries which calls gay a sickness and dedicated itself for 37 years to "praying away the gay" shut down and offered a sweeping apology to the LGBT community last month.

Its President, Alan Chambers, issued a lengthy apology for the harm he's responsible for. He said, in part, "More than anything, I am sorry that so many have interpreted this religious rejection by Christians as God’s rejection.  I am profoundly sorry that many have walked away from their faith and that some have chosen to end their lives."

Chambers is married with two children and admits he will never overcome his same-sex attractions. I applaud Chamber's announcement, and the courage that took because surely he's getting it from both sides - and not in a good way. His followers are enraged with his betrayal, and the gay community says apology is not enough after the harm he's done. Chambers is married with two children and admits he will never overcome his attraction to other men. I feel sorry for someone confined in his belief system, unable to live freely. I feel more sorry for his wife. But how can you feel sorry for people who trap themselves? 

It's always curious to me when Christians decide they should love others unconditionally - basically, being decent human beings (which you certainly don't need god for) is a kind of a major revelation for them. It's like they have to climb down from this lofty cloud, through a veil of dogma to be decent towards others which at that point is hailed as some kind of achievement. In actuality, it's the godless golden rule you should have learned in kindergarten.   

I remember a girl in college, a devout Christian, who was very sweet and well-intentioned. There was a homeless woman, Connie, always hanging outside our dorm asking for money and clothes, and this girl was trying to minister to Connie and Connie was rather receptive to conversion if it would improve her circumstances. The girl ended up giving Connie a bunch of her clothes. A very Christian thing to do, right? A week later, the girl runs into Connie who asks for more clothes. "But I just gave you some clothes last week, where are they?" Connie gave a rambling answer and the girl realized Connie had sold those clothes for money - money which was probably used for alcohol and drugs!

The girl related this story to me, sharing how she gave those clothes with the expectation Connie needed them to wear but Connie had lied to her. After thinking it over long and hard she came to the conclusion she should love Connie even though she had lied; that it didn't matter what Connie did with the clothes as she should be giving them unconditionally. The whole time she's explaining this, I'm thinking: you actually have to think about this? I mean, double DUH.

Thank you for shutting down your evil ministry, Mr. Chambers. But this is precisely why I'm not a Christian.

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