I know I need to

I know I need to improve my writing skills – grammar, spelling, thought progression, and logic, etc. – so I’ll write as I attempt to do so. As I encounter this stuff more and more, my need to articulately and competently deal with the issue grows, especially as I engage people like the conservative pastor on my trip back to New York. I am finding that it isn’t just me figuring things out for myself any longer, but I have to be concerned with the issues as they affect other people. Just some comments concerning another piece written in the latest Citizen Link form Focus on the Family.
Statistics Show Declining Interest in Civil Unions
by Stuart Shepard, correspondent
Interest in Vermont same-sex civil unions is on the decline, and those numbers provide some insight into what the homosexual lobby’s attack on marriage is really all about.
The number of civil unions in Vermont has dropped steadily since they were first offered in 2001. In fact, of the gay couples in that state that identified themselves to the 2000 Census — a number most would agree is an undercount — fewer than half applied for a civil union.

How does the decline provide insight the Religious Right’s perceived gay attack on marriage? What is the correlation? They say that a drop in applications for civil-unions equals a secret gay plan to destroy marriage. How do they draw this conclusion, except to grasp at anything – anything – in an attempt to prove their unfounded theory.
Another valid interpretation can be that the drop of applications after the initial offerings simply reflects the well documented and well reported fact that many gays do not find it necessary to receive a piece of paper from the government to validate their mutual commitment to one another. Those who wanted a state sanction and the rights and responsibilities provided, did so and continue to do so. The attitude to forgo state sanction is reflected in secular society in general – there are more and more straight people opting out of “marriage” as a legally binding contract issued by the state and as a sanctioned blessing from the Church.
“The homosexual lifestyle is about sexual adventure,” said Tony Perkins, president of the Family Research Council. “I’m beginning to see that they’re not interested in obtaining marriage for the purpose of monogamy and long-term commitment.
The relative lack of interest, he added, reveals the underlying goal is not attaining marriage, but rather destroying the traditional marriage culture.

It is true that many straight people are losing interest in state sanction and Church blessing to solemnize their mutual relationships. It is also true that many homosexuals do not believe state sanction or Church blessing is necessary to solemnize their relationships. That does not prove at all that the underlying goal of either group is the destruction of marriage, however. To draw that kind of conclusion is manipulative and disingenuous – not the kind of thing a Christian organization should do. Frankly, it is a lie.
It is also true that many men are sexually adventurous, and that includes many gay men. After working with college students 20 years, I can tell you that straight guys are as interested in and seek out sex on par with any gay guy, although straight men may simply not have the same opportunities. I want to stress, however, that there is a big difference between the attitudes of secular men and Christian men, students or otherwise, gay or straight. Being gay to some is about being as sexually adventurous and irresponsible as possible, but I can levy the same charge towards many straight men how view being a man in the same way. Again, that does not mean that either groups seek the destruction of marriage – it is more a live-and-let-live attitude.
“Clearly, this is going to be a defining moment for America and for all of Western civilization,” Perkins said. “Will we defend the historical, traditional and biblical view of marriage and family, or will it pass into the shadows of history?”
I believe the Religious Right’s battle against gay marriage is not a battle for the ‘institution of marriage,’ which is in terrible trouble within the Evangelical and Fundamentalist communities. It is a battle to use many gay people’s desire for marriage as a scapegoat – they cannot confront the primary threat to heterosexual marriage because too many Evangelicals/Fundamentalists participate in the actual problems themselves, plain and simple. This is a convenient smokescreen to mask their drive to stamp out homosexuality. They create fear and hysteria for their own purposes. I have no problem with Christians defending a traditional image of marriage, but the logical conclusion of their opposition does not mean that gay people must be excluded from the same responsibilities and privileges that come with state-sanctioned heterosexual marriage. Of course, I believe it can be shown that their underlying goal is control – of politics, media, Christianity, and culture. If fits perfectly with Dominion Theology/Christian Reconstructionism (read about this perspective), to varying degrees.

The people of Focus on

The people of Focus on the Family have shown themselves so willing to distort information to meet their own purposes that I cannot take anything they say as being truthful – have to take everything with a grain of salt. It is shameful for an organization that claims to represent Christ to do such things. They claim for themselves the idea that the end result justifies all means of accomplishing their goals – the end justifies the means. That is not of Christ, who claims that the process of getting to the goal is more important than accomplishing the goal.
Our goal as Christians should not simply be heaven by and by when we die. Our goal is to live life here and now in each moment as God would have us live according to the principles of Jesus Christ. If we do that, then the end will take care of itself. When we stand before God, he is not going say ‘go on because you are standing before me,’ he will say ‘go onÂ’ according to his judgment as to whether we accepted the gift of grace through Jesus Christ.
When we put the end result ahead of the process (the end justifies the means), we begin doing exactly what Focus on the Family (and many other Religious Rights groups) are doing – distorting truth and information in order to persuade (really deceive) citizens into supporting their position, which in this case is a theocratic system in accordance to their definitions. The end result, actually, will be the defamation of Christ and a public that will no longer give them any type of consideration because of their lies and distortions.
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