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09/24/2008

We, 'The Currents,' challenge 'The Formers'

by Jeremy Hooper

200809241008On a newly launched pro-"ex-gay" website called "The Formers" (which sounds to us like an SNL sketch, a Focus on the Family comic book, or a zany Will Ferrell movie), there exists an FAQ section. Here is but one of the queer-hostile thoughts that "The Formers" have formed:

Why is the gay rights movement so hostile toward "ex-gays?"

The simple answer is that we represent their alter ego, the shadow self they believe they cannot be. Homosexuality is a core identity for many. It is not an exaggeration to call it a religion. To stand up and claim you have rejected that identity in favor of a heterosexual one, or even that you have chosen to remain celibate while seeking to be restored to your God-given image, is an affront to everything the gay community stands for. They cannot claim that homosexuality is natural and immutable if others are proving they can change.

To delve into the theology of it a bit, this deception and brokenness has been a powerful tool of Satan, and the anger and hatred (ex-homophobia, if you will) directed at those who expose the lie for what it is, is really the anger of the Enemy as we oppose his plan. Ever since Satan "(fell) from heaven like lightening" (Luke 10:18), his desire has been to confound God's truth and take us captive by perverting our natural desires or needs. His attacks always come in the form of physical lust, material greed or pride. Think of how these all relate to the gay rights movement. Satan's rebellious desire was to be like God, and he used this very lie to seduce mankind in the beginning. Today, the gay rights movement is one expression of the god-like power that men and women seek. The most difficult thing for us to do is admit our powerlessness, which is wrongly perceived as weakness to the ungodly, and allow God to fill us with His truth. The wholeness that we seek in bonding with others homosexually is really only achieved through a relationship with Christ. We are powerless without him and are only deceiving ourselves if we believe otherwise.

Interesting. But wrong. WAAAAY wrong.

We, ACTUAL gay people who do not "struggle" with our attractions but rather embrace them as a natural part of our beings, have our own take on this matter:

200809241031Why is the gay rights movement so hostile toward "ex-gays?"

Well there is no "simple answer" to this, because the premise is flawed on its face. The gay rights movement, while not a monolith, cannot be accurately described as "hostile" towards "ex-gays." In fact, the vast majority of LGBT activists couldn't care LESS about how others conduct their personal affairs. A "live and let live" mindset is far too pervasive within the gay rights movement to allow for such judgements. We leave the policing of sex lives to the other side.

But that being said, the gay rights movement ABSOLUTELY challenges, and even condemns, the "ex-gay" movement. And why? Well, there
is a simple answer to that one: Because "ex-gay" is not a valid orientation that is recognized by ANY -- I repeat, ANY -- credible body of science or health. The only members of the scientific community who give credence to the relatively nascent "gays can change" idea are those that the movement itself has exalted and vaulted into the spotlight. So first and foremost, we in the gay rights movement say, quite simply: YOUR MOVEMENT HAS NO BACKING! We show the public how the "ex-gay" movement is at war with dissension, transparent data transfers, intellectual assessments, and rational considerations, with them instead saying, "Here, just trust the findings of this dude who we ourselves have bankrolled." We, quite unapologetically, call shenanigans on their throughly unscientific methods. Because when talking about crucial parts of a human being's core, we sort of feel like credible scientific opinion and research matter.

We also decry the tactics employed by the "ex-gay" movement. They target impressionable parents who have been taught, mostly through their faith, that gays can and should change through the power of Jesus. Those of us who may, through our own experiences, understand the pain of parental non-acceptance find it absolutely heartbreaking that other young folks will have to go through the same. So many grown adult gay activists will do everything in their power to combat the disinformation, using the truth that we know to exist. Call us self-absorbed if you must, but we are not to fond of having our lives and loves presented as demonic balls of sin. And call us fans of cranberry sauce if you wish, but we are tired of seeing family Thanksgiving dinners that feature an empty seat at the table, all because the heads of the family have been led to believe that anti-gayness/"ex-gay"ness are the truly "pro-family" positions!!

Also, we are annoyed how folks like "The Formers" present homosexuality as an all-consuming force that has robbed gays of their independent thoughts and minds. In the above Q&A, the writer says "
Homosexuality is a core identity for many. It is not an exaggeration to call it a religion." Well, this is a completely unfair line of reasoning. For EVERYONE -- gay, straight, or whatever -- sexuality is a HUGE part of your life. It's just that for heterosexuals, their dating and mating are non-issues. They don't have to fight for their casual acceptance. We gays do have to fight. So the reason why it may sound like gays are wrapped up in discussing their couplings is because we -- wait for it, wait for it -- ARE FORCED TO DO SO! And who is forcing us to fight for basic, decent treatment? Organized movements like the "ex-gay" one!!!!

The absolutely galling thing about the way "The Formers" have presented us as the raging, angry, broken ones, is that they take no responsibility for the situation that exists. But the truth is that the gay rights movement's "hostility" is born not out of anything within its ranks, but rather out of the intense and frightening resistance from its opposition. Contrary to popular belief, gay people don't really enjoy protests. We don't enjoy marching for our rights. We don't enjoy going to court. We don't enjoy waiting for election day to see if we will be able to marry in the spring. We don't enjoy pausing our lives in order to focus our mental facilities towards fostering peaceful acceptance. BUT. WE. HAVE. NO. CHOICE. We have a well-financed, well-connected opposition movement that wishes to deny us of love, companionship, civil rights, respect, religion, equality, partner benefits, hate crimes protections, employment non-discrimination, accurate media portrayals, and basically anything that they've deemed too queer for their personal liking. We push back because we are scared what this movement would look like if left completely unchecked!

If you want to call it "hostile" to encourage scientific accuracy, parental acceptance, and the casual acceptance sexual orientations that demonstrably exist in millions upon millions of people, then you go right ahead. We believe that ultimately, the world will accurately decide who is truly throwing stones: The team that is encouraging peace or the one who is putting gays in bed with Satan!

FAQ [The Formers]

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Your thoughts

They can make 10 new "ex-gay organizations"; the truth is the American public is pretty much aware these people are nothing more than cultists, and deranged to boot.

Besides, these guys fucked up back when they started chanting "there's no such thing as gay people"/"there's no such thing as homosexuals" - and then turns around and calls themselves "ex-gay" or "former homosexuals".

How can you be "ex" or "former"-something, which you claim doesn't exist to begin with?

Nutballs.

Posted by: Scott | Sep 24, 2008 10:46:52 AM

Crap like this is why I'm glad that openly gay and deeply devout Christians are starting to get more attention.

All of this tripe falls apart when people are confronted with the reality that gay and Christian aren't mutually exclusive.

Posted by: Evan | Sep 24, 2008 10:49:16 AM

"which sounds to us like an SNL sketch, a Focus on the Family comic book, or a zany Will Ferrell movie"

G-A-Y:

There's some truth to this - it seems the more visible the "ex-gays" have become in recent years, the more people are catching onto the scam. South Park has covered it ('Cartman Sucks' episode), and there's been a few comedy skits as well, I believe at least 1 from SNL.

I'm sure once Hollywood starts running low on ideas, there will also be a movie - like you said, starring Will Ferrell - or worse, Adam Sandler. And what better way to represent the "ex-gays", than Adam Sandler and his 2-year-old-boy voice.

Posted by: Scott | Sep 24, 2008 10:54:58 AM

"We believe that ultimately, the world will accurately decide who is truly throwing stones: The team that is encouraging peace or the one who is putting gays in bed with Satan!"

It was pretty obvious that the subtext to their argument is that, "gays are Satan worshipers." I guess in that way they can contrast their chosen identity with the chosen identity of a Satanist. It also heightens their level of animosity by equating "martyrdom" to combat with the devil incarnate, which in their case is all of us.

I have got to hand it to them, though, because it takes a "special" kind of con-man to, not only gain the trust of their marks, but then, to stay around and continue bilking them into perpetuity. With all of the scandals involving these charlatans, you would think that the deluded souls might wise-up. Maybe some day.

Posted by: Dick Mills | Sep 24, 2008 2:32:01 PM

Dick,

In my lifetime, MOST things have been pegged as being "Satanic" by these cultists (not just the "ex-gays").

My all-time favorite accusation was from my own church, in the early/mid 80's: because of the girls depicting themselves as mermaids, devils, etc. in their "Venus" music video - *drumroll*.....

BANANARAMA IS SATANIC!!

I'm serious! LOL

At least it wasn't Exposé - or else, I would have REALLY been pissed!

Posted by: Scott | Sep 24, 2008 6:32:14 PM

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