Do not judge, or you too will be judged. (Matthew 7:1). These are the words of Jesus.
If a man has sexual relations with a man as one does with a woman, both of them have done what is detestable. They are to be put to death; their blood will be on their own heads. (Leviticus 20:13). These are not the words of Jesus. In fact, Jesus never said anything like this.
And there is also this other one that is from Jesus – When they kept on questioning him, he straightened up and said to them, “Let any one of you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her.” (John 8:7).
Now, we know that some people believe that people who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender are . . . uh . . . detestable. Some of these people spend a lot of time and money trying to make sure that people who are LGBT are relegated to second-class citizenship. Some of those people also happen to identify as Christian.
I’m not exactly sure how that works because if you follow the teachings and example of Jesus, you would . . . uh . . . not do that. Anyway, some people who claim to be Christian do, in fact, judge people who are LGBT.
I am not anti-Christian when I stand up for LGBT rights. I am anti-bigotry. The fact that someone identifies as a Christian has nothing to do with it. There is no war on religion. It is a war on discrimination. Nothing more. Nothing less.
I do think it’s important to mention here that there is nothing sinful about marriage equality or gender authenticity. It seems to me that when I was pretending to be someone different from my true authentic self, that is when I was in conflict with God. Anyway, I thought it was important to mention.
Here is the Catch-22. If I identify as a Christian, I should not judge. Jesus taught that. Some legislators in Louisiana are making a lot of noise about their beliefs regarding morality of people who are LGBT and one legislator in Louisiana (State Representative Patricia Todd) says she is going to call out some of the self-identified Christians who are promoting their inexplicable version of morality and family values.
Call them out for what? Call them out for having extra-marital affairs. Last I saw, extra-marital sex was like #6 on the Christian Top Ten List. But to call them out on this would seem to be a bit . . . uh . . . judgmental. Or is it?
I am caught between the proverbial rock and an all-too-familiar hard place. I am not supposed to judge, but I can’t believe that I should remain silent while people use religion (or any other tool) to push our children to the point that they consider suicide as a response to being who they are or loving who they love. Not to mention relegating an entire group of people to second class citizenship.
Is it judgmental to point out the blood on the hands of the people who viciously attack the space in which LGBT teenagers might otherwise actually believe they are okay?
I don’t believe that we are supposed to ignore these hateful attacks on any people, by any people. By the way, that includes the 2,000 people who were recently murdered by the Boko Haram. I thought it was important to mention this too.
So, I guess the questions at hand are whether or not this is a true Catch-22 and whether or not Representative Todd would be right to out the adulterers in the Louisiana State Legislature.
In the novel, Catch-22, Joseph Heller writes the following:
There was only one catch and that was Catch-22, that specified that a concern for one’s own safety in the face of dangers that were real and immediate was the process of a rational mind. Orr was crazy and could be grounded. All he had to do was ask; and as soon as he did, he would no longer be crazy and would have to fly more missions. Orr would be crazy to fly more missions and sane if he didn’t, but if he was sane, he had to fly them. Yossarian was moved very deeply by the absolute simplicity of the clause of Catch-22 and let out a respectful whistle.
“That’s some catch, that Catch-22,” he observed.
“‘It’s the best there is,’ Doc Daneeka agreed.”
I think this do not judge thing is a Catch 22 of sorts. A lose-lose, if you will. Maybe a damned if you do and damned if you don’t, kind of thing.
To paraphrase Representative Todd – If you all boys don’t stop raining pain on the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender children of God, I am going to shine some light into all those closets where you have been sneaking around.
Is she right to do such a thing? Don’t ask me, I’m not supposed to judge.
Stephanie Mott is a transsexual woman from Topeka, Kansas and a nationally known speaker on transgender issues. In addition, Stephanie is the executive director of Kansas Statewide Transgender Education Project and a commissioner on the City of Topeka Human Relations Commission. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org