Monday, June 1, 2015

For Franklin Graham dehumanizing gay people comes naturally

Franklin Graham

Franklin Graham is whipping himself and his followers into a frenzy over same-sex marriage. In doing so Graham is demonizing a vulnerable and fragile minority. In a piece published in Charisma consider the wealthy preacher's* description of a Supreme Court ruling favorable to marriage equality:
Should the verdict favor the fanatical proponents of same-sex marriage, it will dramatically and fundamentally alter the moral fabric and future of the American family.
Those seeking a better life for themselves, their partners and their children through marriage equality are “fanatics” bent on the destruction of America's morality and future. Where could it go from there and what would Graham have his followers infer about gay people? Mr. Graham (who is something short of a scholar) has failed to learn some important lessons from history. African Americans, Jews, Tutsi, Bosnians, Armenians, Cambodians and many others know all too well the potential for disaster that results from dehumanizing a group of people.

Graham fails to explain how “the future of the American family” is in peril and for good reason. With more than 11 years of experience we have learned that the only people affected by gay marriage are those who are gay married and no one is being forced to do so. Graham is intent on making people people fear that they are in imminent threat of harm. His degradation of gay people continues:
The very fact that the U.S. Supreme Court is even considering a ruling on same-sex marriage reveals the depraved moral state of our nation. Just a decade ago, no one would have predicted the rapid ascent and outsized influence of the gay lobby. According to the most recent U.S. census, gay couples represent less than one-half of 1 percent of the population. By 2006, 33 states had laws modeled after the 1996 federal Defense of Marriage Act.
Setting aside the intellectual dishonesty of Graham's statistic, we are portrayed as conduits for depravity. We are very cunning for we have far too much influence. Perhaps Mr. Graham can edit the original script of Der Ewige Jude in order to justify why we “shall surely be put to death.” Graham begins the process:
Regardless of the outcome, the Bible has the final, authoritative word on marriage. No justice, court, state, legislative body, or cultural opinion can change the divine purpose for marriage. It is a sacred institution. It is holy matrimony designed by God for the glory of God.
And then:
The full-fledged attack on the institution of marriage by gay rights groups is in reality an assault on the church of the Lord Jesus Christ. It is driven by the forces of evil that hate the name of Christ.
Gay rights, by definition, are the hatred of Jesus. But of course the real victims of persecution, according to Graham, are the good Christians who simply want to live out their faith:
This is a pivotal moment in the history of our nation. If the nation's highest court decrees same-sex marriage as the law of the land, the consequences will be grave. It sets the stage for persecution of believers who are committed to the truth of Scripture. Can pastors preach against homosexuality without being accused of hate speech? Can Christian schools and colleges deny housing to same-sex couples and maintain their tax-exempt status?
In other words, oppressing gay people is not intolerance — it is an act of self-defense. Who could oppose that? As I said, Mr. Graham does not know history and has not learned its lessons.

  *According to public records Graham earned $440,927 in salary from Samaritan's Purse in 2013. It has been reported that the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association pays Franklin Graham an additional $160,000 per year.

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