Jon Kennedy’s ‘Postcards from
The gay agenda
JONAL ENTRY 1309 | OCTOBER 25 2013
He who is not with me is against me; he who does not gather with me scatters.
One of the scores of memes generated in a Google image search of “gay agenda.”
The gay agenda
Turning from my diary catch-ups to a more philosophical topic, another in a long list of “word studies” that have appeared in this blog since 1998….
I’ve been toying with this topic for months, and have finally decided to give it a go. If you “Google” “gay agenda” images, you get thousands of hits, many of which seem to protest that there is no such thing as a gay agenda or imply that it’s a fiction of traditionalists and grumpy old fogies opposed to homosexuals and what they stand for.
But I propose that thoughtful homosexuals and traditionalists alike would agree that it’s never appropriate to speak of people groups as “them” as though their “agendas” or goals or values are uniform or that some group’s “agenda” speaks for any particular individual. This is the same error as the one racism is based on: using generalized stereotypes as though they fit whole racial groups. They never do and should never (in MNSHO) be used that way.
But I also submit and defend the proposition that “movements” do have agendas and that, in fact, their agendas define them and often have the power to energize them, and so it is accurate to speak of a gay agenda as the goals and values being promoted by the gay movement. It’s for this reason that I have always (since I was managing editor of the Christian Beacon) advocated that gay and homosexual should not be used as synonyms; “gay” should be reserved to refer to the “movement” and its values, not all homosexuals or people who admit to same-sex attraction (widely called SSAs in recent literature on the general topic). I’ve been a member of a number of movements in my life: especially the “reformation* movement” in my late teens and twenties; the “reformational** movement” in my thirties, the traditionalist movement after being mentored by C.S. Lewis, and others. I would say, too, that Christianity, as Jesus and His disciples defined it, is a movement and that it has certain agendas.
Christianity has as its over-riding—one can even call it its defining agenda—the world’s salvation. And by salvation it means changing the world’s course from a secular, worldly, or vulgar (in its most basic meaning) course to a path of righteousness through being adopted in Jesus’ family, one person at a time until every one has been reached, and learning the meaning of righteousness and how to pursue it (imitating and growing more like Him). Some might say this defines “evangelical Christianity,” but every authentic Christian of any denomination or communion believes in this because it is Jesus’ own mandate; none of them pursue it perfecttly because none of the living ones are perfect, but all should be encouraging all the others to keep the course, to finish the race (to use the Apostle Paul’s metaphor).
Another meme image generated in a Google image search.
If the gay movement has any comparable agenda, by my observations as a resident (and I daresay, as a “professional observer” as a trained journalist) of the San Francisco metro area for over forty years, I would conclude that it is sexualizing the world; making it more accepting of public sexual expressions and displays. That includes the example in the second meme above, but it goes even much farther (for example, San Francisco’s supervisors actually legalized public nudity last year, but later back-pedalled after many residents, including some homosexuals, complained about some of the implications of that—mainly, some objected to sitting on public benches that naked people had used). Sexualizing the world includes teaching in the public schools that same-sex “marriage” is a legitimate choice for those desiring it even starting as early as kindergarten. Sexualizing the world has already virtually won the fight for legalizing sodomy through “gay marriage.” It is also demonstrated by widespread use of abortion as birth control and in the Obamacare mandate (the “contraceptive mandate”) that all health insurance programs, even those of church agencies that disapprove of sex outside of traditional marriage, provide abortion services and contraceptives to all of their members. And some court cases in Europe and Canada have already foreshadowed that criticizing gay lifestyles and practices will be illegal (as “hate crimes”) and that blessing such unions will be made mandatory, eventually, in all state-recognized or -sanctioned churches in all liberal-democratic societies.
The gay movement is not the only or even the first social movement to make sexualizing society a goal; feminism, in its crusade for equal sexual freedom for women, has probably influenced the gay movement more than the other way around and it has carried the abortion cause. Playboy and Cosmopolitan magazines have long openly espoused public sexualization, and the Fox, ABC, CBS, and NBC networks have done so less openly but no less relentlessly.
This agenda is why I disagree with one of my colleague writers (and whose work, in general, I highly esteem) in the Orthodox world who feels that Christians making an issue of “gay marriage” are on the wrong track because such opposition could undermine the evangelizing of gays, who need salvation and the therapy offered by the church no less than anyone else. That point is well taken, but the truth often hurts, and the damage to society by greater and greater acceptance of social sexualization is detrimental to all, including gays, whether they know it, or care, or not.
*The Reformation or 20th Century Reformation movement was an anti-Communist (and by extension, anti-liberal) crusade founded and controlled by Presbyterian minister Dr. Carl McIntire, late of Collingswood, New Jersey.
**The Reformational movement is an academic and intellectual movement based in biblical philosophy founded in the Netherlands in the 19th and 20th centuries by Groen van Prinsterer, Abraham Kuyper, Herman Dooyeweerd, and D. H. Th. Vollenhoven.
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§ I have now uploaded over 2,000 photos and videos, mostly from my current visit to Northern Ireland, but also including several hundred photos and videos from my summer in Pennsylvania (2012), and some photos of the family, on my Flickr site. Most of these are now organized by sets. Click here for the Flicker site.
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Homiletical thought: The lectionary reading of the day a few days back recounted the disciples telling Jesus they had rebuked a “non-follower” for trying to oppose evil in His name. But Jesus disapproved of this, telling them that those who are not against Him are for Him. So why the apparent contradiction in today’s lesson? The qualification is that those who are coming to Him for help in their opposition to evil are on the right track but those who are claiming to be able to oppose evil in their own strength, even if they throw out His name to gain attention, are fooling themselves and trying to deceive those they are claiming to help. Those coming toward the Lord are going in the right direction; those who are going away from Him are misled and misleading. As in so many other situations, it comes down to those who are coming from a humble spirit over against those who are operating out of their pride. And all of us are in danger of falling into such self-deceit, what the Russian spiritual fathers call “prelest.”
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Please pray for my mission to Northern Ireland. You can read my background overview of this undertaking here. My residence/postal address is 227 Crumlin Road, Belfast, Northern Ireland BT14 7DY, UK. Mobile: 44 7455 980890.
Jon R. Kennedy, C. S. Lewis Writer in Residence