Monday, August 27, 2012

There Will Be No Quarter!-My Response to the Chick-Fil-A Inquisition

In one of my favorite video games, Killzone III, one of the two main antagonists, in a response to his counterpart and rival's suggestion that they pretend to negotiate with the protagonist forces, replies with a venom-laced and fanatical phrase: "There will be NO negotiating with the ISA. THERE WILL BE NO QUARTER!"

This is the kind of vibe I got as I witnessed the recent summer inquisition by gay rights activists and their far-left allies against Dan Cathy's Chick-Fil-A restaurant chain. And believe me, this sentiment was not coming from the Christian restaurant franchise.

It's always strange (and, to be honest, very annoying) to watch a group or an individual demanding certain things and then not reciprocating. It is a one-sided moral that cannot stand. I am talking, of course, about the LGBT community's demands to be heard and that others respect their choice of "lifestyle"-a oft-said and vaguely understood word if there ever was one-but they themselves denying the same right to conscientious objectors. Contrary to popular belief, my dear friends of the LGBT community (and yes, I have some), not everyone who disagrees with homosexuality is a member of Westboro Baptist (please, Westboro, change that name) Church (again, please drop it-it's an embarrassment to all other churches). Also, not all Christians will condemn your soul to hell for choosing to be gay or lesbian or whatever. We disagree with homosexuality because we believe it to be morally wrong, as well as going against nature (and no, I don't buy the argument that someone is "born" gay; provide scientific evidence beyond reproof and then I'll rethink it but until then, don't bother.)

Also, the whole situation was blown completely out of proportion over some comments that Cathy made in an interview several months before. He said simply that he supported the traditional concept of marriage: you know, the one that every culture and society up until the mid-20th Century supported and upheld-man and woman constitute a marriage, with the purpose of producing offspring and raising a family. This is the family unit prescribed by God Almighty, and from it His entreaty to "be fruitful and multiply". This statement of personal belief and conviction was taken to mean, in homophobe code that it seems only LGBTs can understand (?), "I hate gays".

My response: are y'all on drugs? I mean, more than usual?
Cathy never said such a thing, and the record proves it. But then it comes out that Cathy donated money to the Family Research Council, a pro-trad. marriage organization that seeks to bolster traditional marriage. This organization has, in an ironic twist, been labeled a "hate group" by the Southern Poverty Law Center, itself one of the most bigoted organizations in the US that labels itself a "watchdog". Some watchdog.
What a man donates his own money to is his business. And a man's opinions are his own and nobody else's. It makes sense that someone who supports traditional marriage is going to support and donate to like-minded organizations, just as the reverse (gay-marriage supporters) is true with theirs. The gay community's attempts to label Chick-Fil-A a hate group are baseless and senseless, not to mention just plain damn ad hominem if there ever was any.

But this has become par for the course when it comes to the gay community: advance our agenda and attack/demonize anyone who disagrees with us. The part that is left out is that "anyone" means "everyone" to the LGBT. Thus the labels of "hate-monger", "homophobe" and "bigot" that are hurled at Christians or anyone else who disagrees with homosexuality or speaks out against the disturbing blitzkrieg of LGBT tactics pushing their agenda.

Here's the skinny, my LGBT friends: If you want respect, show some in return. You know, the "Golden Rule"-"do unto others as you would have done unto you". With the hate you show those who disagree with you, is it any wonder why fundamentalists of every stripe condemn you to hell? Honestly?
The fact of the matter is that most people, including myself, don't give (to be blunt) a bloody damn about what you do in your own house, much less who you do it with. Our problem is when you are flamboyant about it and rub it in our faces and then demand that we respect your choice of living life when we find it abhorrent. We don't appreciate it, and speaking for some, won't stand for it. Hence the backlash and the never-ending culture war.

And let's be real: what rights are you denied, apart from the whole "spousal benefits" and "hospital visitation" that you scream so loudly and obnoxiously about? You have, as American citizens, the same rights, spelled out in the Constitution, as every other American. The fact that you can have "gay pride" parades is directly tied to the 1st Amendment. In some countries (i.e. most if not all the Middle East, ad nauseum) you wouldn't be able to do that. You would be BEHEADED for living a homosexual lifestyle. Even the fundamentalist Christians recoil from such a fate and would never demand it for you all. So for all your lamentations about being "oppressed" (Please for all of us, don't compare yourselves to the Civil Rights Movement-most blacks argue that your "struggle" doesn't hold a candle to the struggle for equality that blacks fought for decades, and being a historian, I'm inclined to agree with them), you really have it better than 9/10 of the world.

In conclusion, I beg my LGBT friends (and to those who would hate on them) to stop acting like children, grow up, be civil, and talk calmly about the issues. Provide evidence to back up your positions (and yes, my Christian friends, we will still follow the Gospel, but today's world needs empirical proof-if you like I can point you to a source I found that solidified a position I held about this matter) and act like freaking adults. If you don't want to be marginalized or rendered irrelevant-and yes I'm speaking to both sides here-then end the hate-fest and meet in the middle. Enough is enough.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Breaking the Chains: The Egalitarian Idea and Radicalism

In a recent column from the New Criterion, man of letters Roger Kimball commented on the "egalitarian impulse" and its effects upon the problem of dealing with iniquity. Kimball stated,
"The problem today is that the egalitarian imperative threatens to overwhelm that other great social impulse, the impulse to achieve, to excel, to surpass: “always to be best and to rise above others,” as Homer put it in one classic expression of the agonistic spirit. Radical egalitarianism—egalitarianism uncorrected by the aspirations of excellence—would have us pretend that there are no important distinctions among people; where the pretense is impossible, it would have us enact compensatory programs to minimize, or at least to paper over, the differences."

Kimball's point is that no matter how much or how loudly one pushes total equality, there will always be those who are not satisfied and will seek to rise out of the dust to achieve and excel. It is a fundamental part of the human psyche, partly, I believe, because of our inherent closeness to the Image of the Almighty. For centuries Christ was a paragon of virtue, the penultimate example of a noble life, and this desire to be "as Christ was" has now become a part of the Western spirit as integral as DNA. We strive to be better men and women because complacency breeds arrogance, and that arrogance breeds discontent that feeds the fury, the same fury that caused Heaven's Rift and Lucifer's defeat and exile.

This is not to say, however, that the egalitarian idea in and of itself is evil. Far from it. Part of the reason I am a staunch Unionist when it comes to the Civil War is because I believe that slavery of any kind is evil and morally reprehensible, among the most heinous being slavery based on skin color. It is not the main reason of my support for the Union, but it is a fundamental part. Sometimes lauded, sometimes ridiculed, the egalitarian idea is, itself, a reflection of Christ's teachings and the American idea that "all men are created equal" by their Maker. The problem arises when people mistake "equal" for a command that all men be equal in everything, especially income. Christ never spoke of "spreading the wealth around". He never demanded that society, much less the state, take from the "haves" and give to the "have-nots". And the much quoted "camel through a needle" parable about the rich is completely misunderstood by those who use it to further their ideological agenda.

Christ's mercy and salvation is offered to all, regardless of station, class, skin, gender, or political affiliation. It was assurance that every Soul would be given a fair hearing and honest judgement by God Himself and that those who lived by His Commandments and declared Him the Savior of their Soul would be saved (but even God gave special considerations to noble, virtuous souls who had never heard the Gospel). And this salvation went beyond economic circumstances. The egalitarian ideal-that of the abolitionists, that all men have the same constitutional rights and the ability to make decisions on their own without interference-has, unfortunately, been hijacked into a neo-socialist mantra. This bastardized ideal is lethal to productive society, and ultimately to civilization.

I got to thinking about the idea of progress the other day, and it occurred to me that progress in society, in culture, in civilization, is unattainable if the spirit to excel, to rise above, is dead. And true progress comes from hard work and a noble ethic, with the lessons of the past providing a blueprint and rubric on how to march forward. The new egalitarianism that our radical left loves to propagate is a false copy, a doppelganger to be reviled. It represents not forward movement, or progression, but regression, because it seeks to put chains on those who would improve our culture and society and drags them down into the morass, what Churchill called "the equality of misery".

And any "equality" in misery is, in my humble opinion, not equality at all. It is, beyond a doubt, the closest thing to Hell.