You know what my problem is? Well, no, I mean - you're right, I have more than one. But in this case I'm referring specifically to my inability to pass up a good debate. I sometimes think of my friend Kevin (he died almost four years ago and I still miss him desperately). One time he and I were at a party and Kevin got into some verbal sparring with a fellow party-goer. I can't remember what topic they were debating, but they were both getting very animated about it. The other guy clearly thought he was getting the best of my friend and asked, "Do you capitulate?" And Kevin, without missing a beat, responded, "Capitulate? I'm not even breathing heavy!"
Like Kevin, I enjoy a good debate. Earlier this week, a friend from high school posted a quote from Joel Osteen on Facebook. It was actually a nice quote: "Celebrate
other people’s victories. Let their successes inspire you. If God did
something so wonderful for them, He can do it for you."
Uplifting, yes. However, I have no time or patience for Joel Osteen. Not able to help myself, I posted a response about not being able to hear anything Joel Osteen says because his homophobia is so loud.
Now, in retrospect, I should not have said a word. The friend who posted the quote is a genuinely nice person. The kind of person who is not inclined to say anything bad about anybody. When she saw my note about Osteen's homophobia, she mentioned that she had not been aware of it. My friend is not homophobic.
You don't have to take my word for Osteen's stance. Google it. He's been interviewed on national television multiple times and always admits it when called out on the topic. Hey, I'm glad people find him inspiring. I find him a little creepy and I think his wife might possibly be a robot, but that's just me. In my mind, though, it doesn't matter if someone is "inspiring" if they are spouting intolerance out the other side of their mouth.
After my response on the post, someone else came along and said this: "I like Joel. Very positive dude. Claudia not to be negative or anything but homosexuality is not a Christian belief."
A response from another person: "can't help but feel uplifted after hearing Joel... he does not believe in everything, but WHO does?"
I, unable to help myself, responded: "How
does someone believe or not believe in homosexuality? It's like saying
that you're pretty iffy on this whole concept of the sun rising in the
east. Okay, I'm done now, I promise. L is so nice and I'm leaving
black marks on her Facebook page."
And then came the piece de resistance: "Claudia
it's ok to be a lesbian - I guess. But why do you have to be militant
about it. I know exactly what you are doing.... Your attacking
Christianity simply because you cannot be a part of it. Joel is a
Christian and if he sounds homophobic then it's because he is. What's
so wrong about that? the kingdom of heaven is not for everyone."
I'm a militant lesbian? I had no idea! Wait until I tell my husband! Boy, won't he be surprised. Also, how do I go about explaining my physical attraction to men (particularly tall ones with dark hair)? And my longstanding crush on Paul Rudd?
I guess I was supposed to be insulted, but this was the most interesting thing that happened to me all week, so I was actually somewhat delighted. I was reminded of a quote from actor Johnny Galecki. I am not a fan of "The Big Bang Theory" so I prefer to think of him as David from "Roseanne" instead. In any case, people kept asking him to address questions about his sexuality. He responded, "I haven’t really addressed those rumors because why defend yourself against something that isn’t offensive?"
What really upset me about the "it's okay to be a lesbian" comment on Facebook was the misuse of the word "your." If you know me, then you know it took everything I had not to respond to that. Instead, I unsubscribed from the thread and decided to let Mr. I'm-Going-to-Heaven-and-You're (Your)-Not have the last word.
So, I'm a militant lesbian and I'm not going to heaven. Bummer. The whole scene just made me laugh, but it also made me a little bit sad, just knowing this is the battle my gay friends and family members must continually face. The logic is just so screwy. I care about equality for all people, so I must be gay. I also care about animal rights, so I must be a Schauzer. I'm concerned about racism. Maybe I am black?
People are nuts.