Friday, June 4, 2010

American Christians Persecute Gays? Hardly.

A couple days ago, The Economist ran an article that accused American Christians of being the cause of the persecution of gays around the world. The article focused particularly on Africa, though it did not limit its claims to that continent. According to The Economist the reason Africans despise homosexuality is “an influx of conservative Christians, mainly from America, who are eager to engage African clergy in their own domestic battle against homosexuality.” This is pure propaganda and The Economist should be ashamed it ever published this article.

For starters, let’s point out a few facts about Christians and the West. It is fashionable for gay rights groups and liberal westerners to talk about how horrible America is to gays. If you believe the things they say, around every corner in America lurks an obsessed Christian waiting to string up any gays they can find. This is utter crap. In fact, gays owe Christians a huge debt for the introduction of the concept of “love they neighbor,” a tolerance generating concept that is not at all common in non-Christian countries.

Moreover, it is ludicrous to equate Christianity with persecution of gays. Consider that despite the fact that America is a Christian nation, with almost 90% of Americans claiming to be some form of Christian, America is stunningly tolerant of homosexuality. Yes, many American Christians view homosexuality as a sin. And many non-Christians find homosexuality repulsive. Yet, despite this, homosexuality is no longer a crime anywhere in the country and, legally speaking, gays have no fewer rights than heterosexuals in any state. Further, gays have the right to marry in some states, they have the right to civil unions in others -- something singles and polygamists and others don't have. Many states even allow gay couples to adopt children. And most states include gays in their anti-discrimination laws. We even have openly gay lawmakers and celebrities, and actual crime against gays is rare, despite the media propaganda to the contrary.

Now compare how gays are treated in the rest of the world. Here are a handful of examples:

• In Iran, homosexuality is illegal with a penalty of death for men and 100 lashes for women.

• In the Muslim parts of Nigeria, it is punishable by death for men and 50 lashes plus six months in prison for women. In the Christian parts, men face 14 year prison sentences.

• In Jamaica, it’s punishable by ten years hard labor.

• In Malawi, it’s punishable by 14 years in prison with corporal punishment.

• In Malaysia, it’s punishable by 20 years in prison with whippings.

• A bill in Uganda will make it a criminal offense to “fail to report” gay people, and would make gay sex punishable by death.

• In Iraq, Americans put gay rights into their constitution, but Shia militias routinely kidnap and murder gays, with some claiming that Iraqi security forces are complicit.

• In Africa, something called “collective rape” is common, which involves groups of assailants raping lesbians to “cure” them of their lesbianism.

• And on and on. All told, 80 countries criminalize homosexual sex or homosexuality.
Yet, Christian America is the bad guy? Give me a break.

Are we really to believe that conservative American Christians have put these laws into place in Muslim countries? And American Christians have convinced Muslim militias to murder gays. . . the same Muslims who kill Christians? Are we to believe that Africans, like Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe and Thabo Mbeki of South Africa, who were associated with “godless communists,” not Christianity, suddenly chose to become the agents of white American Christians? These are the same Africans who demonize whites as official policy. Mugabe, who describes gays as “worse than dogs or pigs,” has been systematically killing the remaining white farmers in his country. No white American Christian group has his ear. What about Thabo Mbeki? He fought to prevent AIDS treatment in South Africa, and he claims that Westerners caused AIDS to wipe out blacks. He’s now doing the bidding of Jimmy Swaggert? Yeah, sure.

And if white Christians are so effective in brainwashing Africans, then why haven’t they stopped polygamy, a common African practice? Are we to believe that Christians went to Africa to encourage them to hate gays, but decided not to bother with polygamy?

This is all entirely ridiculous and paranoid. It is wishful thinking.

What The Economist and their friends on the left don’t want to admit is that the rest of the world is not following the West on this issue. The left loves the idea of watering down western values with the introduction of non-western values. But they only love this on their terms. And when these other cultures don’t conform to the views the left wants, then the left doesn’t know how to react. At first, they tried to use institutions like the UN to force liberal social values upon these countries, but these countries called this what it was -- “cultural colonialism.” And then these countries learned to band together and turn the UN to their advantage. Soon the UN was pushing “conservative” African and Muslim values.

Now the left finds itself in a catch-22. If it calls out these countries, then it exposes itself as cultural imperialists who want to impose their own "deviant western values" in place of "African values." It would also weaken the case for importing foreign values through these “new world order” institutions like the UN, because the left's argument is premised on the idea that these third world countries have values that are superior to ours. Thus, by calling these countries out, the left will lose credibility in the West and the non-west. But if it doesn’t call them out, then the values that will be imported will increasingly be the kinds of values the left cannot stand, and institutions like the UN will come to haunt the left.

So with no good options, the left has chosen to try to shift the blame to evil American conservatives and American Christians by claiming that these groups have “warped” these Avatar-like perfect cultures. This appears to be a tantrum-induced response, or it's delusional wishful thinking. Or it might be part of a strategy to trick Africans, Asians, Middle Easterners and South Americans into thinking that the values they hold dear are not really their own values, but have been forced upon them by evil American conservatives. Good luck with that.

In any event, things are turning ugly for the left, as they always do, and I would expect them soon to stop professing a love for foreign values. But, by then, it may be too late. Leftist-created institutions like the UN have already been co-opted, and these countries are only getting more insistent that the world recognize their values. Indeed, soon, the left may find itself struggling against institutions like the UN as these countries use the UN and other similar bodies to seek to undo those "deviant Western values," even in the West.

And that leads us to an old adage: if you play with fire, you will get burned.


Joel Farnham said...


All I can think of, is that the American Left NEEDS it's villans. The christians are convenient for that purpose.

USArtguy said...

Meanwhile in the real world

AndrewPrice said...

Joel, They do them some villains don't they? It's amazing how far they will go to find villains. I haven't never seen people this badly in need of villains to justify their world view since the Nazis and the Communists.

AndrewPrice said...

USArtguy, Thanks for the link. I've followed a lot of this, but haven't gathered all of the information like this.

If Christians were doing this to Muslims all over the world, can you imagine what our media would be doing? They would be covering every event and blasting every aspect and every participant of Christianity. But since it's Muslims killing, raping, enslaving and maiming Christians, they ignore it. . . wouldn't want to offend "the religion of peace."

USArtguy said...

You're welcome, Andrew.

This article "Afghan president takes 'personal interest' in suspended NGOs" is also found on that site, however Yahoo News had it June 1.

"Converting from Islam to another religion is punishable by death under Afghan law. "

"In parliament, Abdul Sattar Khawasi, a deputy of the lower house, called for Muslim converts to Christianity to be executed."

Funny, I don't recall Christians in congress demanding Muslims be "executed".

There are many more examples of course but I've made my point.

AndrewPrice said...

USArtguy, Those are good points, so are the school attacks across Afghanistan and Pakistan, where Muslim man-made-disasterist are attacking schools that let girls attend because letting women be educated is an affront to "the religion of peace."

If our media were a real media rather than a mouthpiece, stories like this would dominate the news.

BevfromNYC said...

But Andrew, if one person professing to be a Christian hates homosexuals, then that means ALL Christians are hatemongering knuckle-dragging homophobes.

As opposed to when a professed Muslim blows up a building in the name of Allah, he is denounced as a "one-off" and NOT a Muslim at all because we know ALL Muslims are peace-loving people.

It's really getting tiresome, and I'm not even a Christian. Well, I'm worse. I'm a Jew...

patti said...

somehow bush will get blamed for this too. or has he already?!

patti said...

bev: i feel your pain. i'm catholic and now this: Mexican government officials have moved their satellite consular office from the Catalina Island Country Club to a Catholic Church – citing protection under the Geneva Convention.

of course now ALL catholics believe this is a swell idea...

AndrewPrice said...

Bev, I know what you mean. It's ridiculous that all Christians and all Jews get tarred with the words or deeds of any single member of their religions, but somehow Muslims are all innocent and blameless -- even those who have professed an intent to kill Christians or Jews (like Ahmedinejad), or the tens of thousands of them who cheered as American buildings blew up, or the Imams who call for the murder of people who draw cartoons or write books.

If a group of Catholic Bishops or a group of Rabbis did these same things, can you image the outrage in the media and in the corridors of Washington? Yet, somehow they feel compelled to run out and absolve Muslims, when they should be calling them on this and demanding that they purge their religion of these nuts if they truly want us to consider them a religion rather than a cult of hate.

I cannot stand double standards and will not tolerate them.

AndrewPrice said...

Well, I'm sure they'll find a way, they blamed him for everything else. For example, do you recall how Bush got blamed for not fixing the Sudan? And now that Obama is in office and he's done nothing about it, the issue is magically gone. . .

Tennessee Jed said...

continue to fightsome health issues so it has been too long, but a good read, Andrew. Isn't "The Economist" the periodical favored by the great objective television news anchorette, Lady Katherine of Couric? And didn't she look down her pert little liberal nose at Sarah Palin's reading list?

This crap has been going on since Graham Greene and books like "The Ugly American." Your analysis gives the true record of persecution abroad and it sure as hell is not us.

May take me a while to get back up to speed, but will try and read as much as I can even if I don't always comment.

AndrewPrice said...

Jed, Thanks! Welcome back, I was thinking about you and hoping you were ok -- you'd mentioned some health problems before.

Yep, that The Economist. Many people swear by The Economist because of its (formerly-earned) reputation for being center-right, for being economically and rationally focused, and for being a more in-depth read than you will find in most magazines. But they've really squandered that reputation over the last 5-10 years and most of what they put out now is shallow, left-biased, poorly thought out garbage. They really need to clean up their act.

CrispyRice said...

It's amazing the contortions the left will go through in a vain attempt to be rational.

I used to read the Economist, too, but gave it up quite awhile ago. I'd LOVE a replacement for it. I like how it gave so much international news that we are hard-pressed to get here.

AndrewPrice said...

Crispy, That's the only reason I still get The Economist, because it does touch upon international stories that you just can't get here. Unfortunately, it's become far too biased and too shallow. Like you, I wish there was a good substitute.

AndrewPrice said...

P.S. Crispy, "rationalization" is a good word for what they've done here -- they just can't accept that people don't subscribe to their views.

Joel Farnham said...


Off topic, Did you see that Biden actually said that Israel has an absolute right to deal with it's security concerns. Since Biden is gaffe-prone, it is a singular wonder he makes sense. Shocked me.

AndrewPrice said...

Joel, I didn't see that, but for once he's right. How about that? I guess that proves the old "broken clock" adage, that even a broke clock is right twice a day. With Biden, I guess it's once an administration?

Joel Farnham said...


This marks the first time I ever heard that Biden said something that makes sense.

Is it once an administration or once a century? Hmmmm.

AndrewPrice said...

Joel, He made sense before the election a couple of times, like when he said that Obama would be tested and we'd think he was screwing up. He nailed that one all right!

StanH said...

Absurdity is liberal stock and trade.

AndrewPrice said...

Stan, Yep. Absurdity and hypocrisy.

Floyd R. Turbo said...

Absurdity, hypocrisy and an almost fanatical devotion to the Pope...

oh sorry... that's the Spanish Inquisition.

If it weren't for the Judeo-Christian ethos -- gays would have no safe haven anywhere. Ironically -- though we condemn the behavior as a perversion -- the person is still a creature -- Imago Dei in which human rights inhere. Commies, fascists and Muslims have not been too kind to homosexuals

AndrewPrice said...

Floyd, Absolutely right. And that's the thing that I find so amazing about this debate. The mere fact that we can have these kinds of discussions are a testament to the openness of our culture -- a culture that is undeniably based on Judeo-Christian principles, values that preach tolerance and forgiveness and coexistence -- values that are absent in the rest of the world. Yet, for political reasons, some people overlook that fact to basically slander an entire religion that has made this part of the world safe for all kinds of people.

To ignore that and to make the claim that somehow Christians (or Jews) are responsible for the evil that is done to homosexuals in the rest of the world is either incredibly ignorant or it slanderous.

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