Tuesday, July 10, 2012

The Christian Exploitation of Homophobia for Cash

My commute to work has become rather (how to put it) dreadful.  You see The Light of the Nations “Church” has erected a huge billboard that I have to drive past twice a day five days a week.  This billboard suggests that Jesus can “save” people from homosexuality.  It depicts a man ripping open his shirt as words such as “drugs, lies, depression, porn and divorce” (amongst others) fly into the air.  Among the words is “homosexuality”.  This billboard then also suggests that the Church believes that a person’s ills, including homosexuality, can be cured by the Christian faith.  I say this is bullshit!
This advert is misleading, dishonest and offensive, to say the least, and I take great personal umbrage that this billboard was even allowed to be erected.  Homosexuality is neither a disease nor is it a choice and it most certainly cannot be “cured”.  This advert clearly uses discrimination against the LGBT community as a tool to bring people to their services and therefore perpetuates their Church's hate against the LGBT community.  Homosexuality should not be equated to things like using drugs, having an extramarital affair, viewing pornography and getting a divorce. These are choices people make. I find it offensive that they advertise their ignorance and intolerance next to a busy road and that I have to drive past it every fucking day.

Once again religion and a bunch of pastors with questionable motives are exploiting homophobia for financial gain.  But this is not the first time this “church” has been involved in less than Christian like behavior.  The “church” has also featured on Hello Peter for deducting donations of people’s accounts, one of whom had left the church well over two years ago.  It would seem that these Pastors are truly in the business of religion for the cash and not for saving souls, which in their case may be a secondary bonus.  Personally I am sick of people using religion to further their own bank accounts, spreading hatred and intolerance and using homophobia to get more asses into their seats at sermons.
Sure, faith can help some people get rid of a few of their vices but haven’t we learned by now that you cannot pray the gay away.  Why are certain religious groups and churches still perpetuating this myth?  Don’t they realize they are causing more harm?  Creating more fear and hatred towards the LGBT community?  Committing a sin according to their bibles?  Is it just me or does this seem like a trend.  Every time a congregation seems to dwindle in numbers the first place that congregation leaders go to is the old trusty LGBT community.  Condemn the gays and promise you can “cure” them and your church will be saved.

This is exactly why I don’t go to church and why I do not believe in organized religion.  The bible is open to interpretation and some people can twist and deform its content to suit whatever agenda they want to push.  What is sad is that there are some people sitting in the pews every Sunday who do not want to think for themselves and lap up untruths which they never question and place their trust and salvation in people who are not even qualified to preach.  People who call themselves pastors.  Pastors who need your money.
Don’t get me wrong, I have nothing against religion per se but I do have a big gripe when religion is being used to justify intolerance and hate.  Not so long ago religion was used to justify apartheid in South Africa.  In the Middle East religion is used to further terrorism.  And it is these people who are abusing their faith who are giving religion a bad name.  It is these people who use fear in a religious context for financial, political and social gain and it makes me sick.  Literally!

A complaint has been laid with the Advertising Standards Authority by a fellow queer who also drove past this billboard and I applaud Francios Joubert for taking the initiative.  Edmund Burke once said “All that is needed for the triumph of evil is that good men to do nothing”.  And believe me when I say the queers will not sit idly by and watch how certain “churches”, political parties, organizations and individuals try and strip away our long fought rights, dignity and respect.  That billboard will come down even if I have to rent a bulldozer.

Till next time.


Katy Anders said...

Seems to me - based on what I've seen - that when it comes to faith and LGBT folks, most of the problem is politically based, not religiously based.

It's politics disguised as religion.

They put up billboards like that NOT because they believe that it is equivalent to murder, but because they get applause from the peanut gallery.

Screw them.

We need to remind them of this stuff every day years from now, when they are trying to pretend they never opposed equal rights.

Louie Van Deven said...

"Homosexuality should not be equated to things like using drugs, having an extramarital affair, viewing pornography and getting a divorce. These are choices people make."

Aren't you doing the same thing the church is by saying these people are making choices? Is it possible for someone to be born a sex addict? Are serial killers born to kill? I can't really speak for the serial killers, but I do have friends that can't help themselves when it comes to drinking, drugging, or sleeping around. It certainly doesn't seem like they're making a choice.

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