Thursday, March 26, 2009


I can identify with this guy's complaint; I had a date last year that went in in a very similar direction to the one that he describes. The circumstances were different enough that I was able to end the evening cordially, but needless to say there was no second date.

If I'd had that kind of experience when I still had one foot in the ex-gay community, it probably would have reinforced the negative stereotypes that had been pounded into me for so many years. Fortunately there are guys out there who aren't just out for a quick fling; they can seem like a rare breed when one looks for them in gay venues, but the same could be said of trying to find decent heterosexual men in your average singles bar.

The promiscuous (gay, straight or otherwise) will always be among us; that's simply a fact of life. But as acceptance of gay individuals has increased in Western society in recent decades, it has become gradually easier for gay men who want a more permanent relationship to find one. It's a change that has taken place slowly enough that some outside critics deny that it's happened at all, but the gay community is maturing.

For my part, I think a guy who wants a relationship and not just a one-night stand is worth holding out for.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Downfall, Part 3

Brought to my attention by my friend Mark (who hasn't updated his own blog in a while), this essay offers a thoughtful analysis of why the evangelical church now finds itself in decline, and the role that the religious right's quest for worldly power played in bringing it about. Key point:
But it was all destined to come to a crash. Just as political parties dry up when they run out of ideas, the evangelicals, as Mr. Spencer noted, found themselves becoming irrelevant or worse, a hostile force within families as the reality of our human existence made keeping to the faith a challenge. The world is not flat and it wasn't created in six days. Good little boys and girls who love Jesus and believe in him grow up to be gay, lesbian, bisexual,transgendered or simply not what the bible says they should be. Faith has to coexist with Truth, and not everyone wants to be told that God has a plan for you. And when the political party that rode with you to giddy heights of being within an arm's length of being a permanent majority is swept from power to the point that they can't decide who is really in charge, the last thing they're going to think about is you needy and insistent Jesus-shouters who can't seem to grasp the idea that the only reason they went along with you in the first place was because you paid for it. Republicans are, by nature, a cheap date.
And the religious right is not blind to the fact that it is losing its war to reshape America in its image. Viewed with that in mind, the recent anti-gay conference in Uganda is more than just an exposure of hidden bias and a public relations nightmare - it's an act of desperation. With the tide of the battle for control of the United States quickly shifting away from them, some religious conservatives see looking abroad for support as their best hope for continued relevance.

Never mind how barbaric and oppressive the governments of countries like Uganda might be in practice; as long as they have a large Christian population with the "right" views on certain moral issues, they are valuable and "godly" allies in the eyes of the religious right. That such an alliance might further tarnish the reputation of all evangelicals (and the Christian church in general) is of little consequence, since America is already "lost," and thus any negative reaction that the religious right's message elicits is purely due to the whisperings of Satan and in no way a reflection on the messengers.

By presenting such an ugly face to the world, the self-appointed champions of "God's standards" may well turn the anti-Christian persecution they scream so loudly about into a self-fulfilling prophecy. By legitimizing the use of political power via majority vote to suppress and restrict the rights of a disfavored minority, the religious right has set a strong precedent for future majorities who may be inclined to enact laws that punish the "immorality" of a future Christian minority.

Past commentary:
To Rule Them All


The Allure of Power

Wednesday, March 11, 2009


1. While it's no surprise that a country like Uganda would hold an anti-gay symposium, or that some Americans who have made a career of bashing gay folks would take part in it, it's still a disappointment to see an individual with direct ties to Exodus giving tacit endorsement to Uganda's barbarous treatment of gays by participating.

As such, I find myself in general agreement with this open letter signed by David Roberts, Jim Burroway, Mike Airhart and Wayne Besen. Exodus had plenty of time to either stop its board member (Don Schmierer) from attending or to publicly disassociate itself from Schmierer and the conference, and it met all requests for such a stance with silence.

But at least it does lay to rest once and for all any question of whether Exodus really loves gay people (outside of the "repentant" ones inside its ministries) like it claims to. Full coverage of what went on in Uganda is available at Box Turtle Bulletin.

2. Peterson wrote a piece earlier this week on rising above victimhood as an ex-gay survivor. My take at Ex-Gay Watch can be found here.

3. On a slightly lighter note, Joe.My.God.'s Ironic Quote of the Day hits close to home. Back in my evangelical days the irony of Billy Graham's statement would have escaped me; now I struggle to imagine how anyone couldn't see it...