Tuesday, December 05, 2006

maybe if we keep them separate but equal...

My recent post responding to the comment about Debbie Maken brought me on a brief internet safari (I looked at what else came up in the technorati search that lead to my site). I found a blog post on a site that is labeled "A Website of Focus on the Family." The post is one of the more blatant examples of heterosexism I have seen in a while. The post remarks on the story of a landscaping business that chose not to work with a gay couple and sent them an email explaining why with this email text:

I am appreciative of your time on the phone today and glad you contacted us. I need to tell you that we cannot meet with you because we choose not to work with homosexuals.

Best of luck in finding someone else to fill your landscaping needs.

All my best,


And it gets worse. The post then suggest that "However you feel about the decision they made, it's hard to criticize the way they handled it." I disagree. It is easy to criticize the way they handled it. What is wrong with this country when someone can express blatant discrimination without any reason besides "we choose not to work with homosexuals" and then be commended for their bravery? We used to do this to black people, but last I heard anyone who still behaves that way knows better than to do it so publicly for fear of backlash. I would be (slightly) more forgiving if the landscapers had expressed concern for their young sheltered laborers, or if the couple had been presenting their sexuality in a way that was offensive, but even then, there is no excuse for treating a person as inhuman. And encouragement of this behavior from organizations that claim to be christian makes me sick to my stomach.

Monday, December 04, 2006

more ranty on singleness

I wanted to draw attention to a comment I just received from the proprietor of a blog against singleness about my review of a Debbie Maken article a few months ago.

Here's the text of the comment, for context:

"Actually, the problem is not so much "singleness" per se, as protracted singleness.
If we continue down the road we are going, with so much faulty teaching about the ridiculous contemporary idea of a "gift" of singleness, then you may feel differently in - what? - 10 years time? 20 years time? Maybe if you end up facing the future as a single woman who has passed her child-bearing years, you may wish you hadn't disrespected Maken, but actually took her common sense, Biblical approach far more seriously.
God's will is not just a rubber stamp on our collective actions, meaning that all who experience lifelong singleness have been "gifted" for it, when quite plainly our faulty teaching is causing it."

Now, maybe this whole discourse is railing against another small discourse that says it is best for christians to all be unmarried, but I still find it intensely problematic. As though being 43 and childless would make me so miserable I would change my mind about the problems with gender essentialism and valorizing marriage to young people who then enter unwise marriages in their rush to couple-up and procreate because they so fear spinsterhood.

Why can't the church be the one place you don't feel bad about being single?

On a related but tangential note, I've been considering this hypothesis lately: all of Focus on the Family's cultural and political positions are based in gender essentialism.