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I’m sorry, for always saying sorry, when I’m not sorry, at all.

August 27, 2010

A few months ago, Evangelical leader Andrew Marin began a campaign designed to reach out to gay people by saying, “I’m sorry,” and acknowledging Christianity’s horrible history of intolerance and bigotry. But many find Marin disingenuous since his apology campaign doesn’t mean he thinks homosexuality is okay. Rather, he still holds fast to the Evangelical line that homosexuality is inherently sinful, but he also wants to “love the sinner, not the sin.” Or something. (By the way, the title of this post is taken from a song by the great underground band, Thunderegg.)

So now, many have attacked Marin for being a bit two-faced and for “not really” being sorry.

Those attacks on Marin have, in turn, elicited some interesting replies along the lines of: “Isn’t it enough that he’s sorry for any hurt he may have caused gay people without necessarily changing his belief system (which still insists that homosexuality is sinful)?”

Here’s a reader of Andrew Sullivan responding to Marin’s critics:

Seriously? We’re going to police other people’s beliefs now? We’re going to tell people what they should and shouldn’t think of as wrong, even when they’re actively attempting not to hurt others with those beliefs? There’s a term for that. It’s called “religious intolerance”.  Oh, no doubt somebody will think it offensive or whatever that I would invoke that for one of the world’s most dominant and frequently-dogmatic religions, but it’s true. Tolerance goes in every direction.

It may well be that Marin is being deceptive, in that he’s trying to get queerfolk to lower their guard so his allies can better attack us. If he is, well, tough beans – life sucks. But I don’t know that for certain, and somehow I don’t think most of your readers do, either. What I think is that people are taking a traditional Christian message – dealing with the log in one’s own eye before worrying about the speck in your brother’s – and reading treachery into it. If he’s willing to leave me alone about my sins, and focus instead on dealing with his own, I don’t care what he thinks of me. That’s not him lying, that’s him being … Christian.

FWIW, I’m queer with Catholic parents. Traditional Catholic parents, whom I’m not out to and may never be able to come out to. I have my problems with Christians. Still, I find this whole thing ridiculous and, worse, hypocritical.

I’m not sure what to think of Marin. This video profile of him from the ultra-conservative Christian Broadcast Network sure does creep me out–it drips with holier-than-thou condescension. But maybe that’s not Marin’s fault–maybe that’s just CBN. And maybe I’m just sensitive to the fact that they keep referring to “Christians” as a monolith who all think the same things (about homosexuality and everything else).

Speaking of which: what do you all think?

Vodpod videos no longer available.

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One Comment leave one →
  1. Murray permalink
    August 27, 2010 4:43 pm

    What do I think?

    I agree with this guy:

    “What I think is that people are taking a traditional Christian message – dealing with the log in one’s own eye before worrying about the speck in your brother’s – and reading treachery into it. If he’s willing to leave me alone about my sins, and focus instead on dealing with his own, I don’t care what he thinks of me. That’s not him lying, that’s him being … Christian.”

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