Thursday, April 27, 2006

Now Selling "The Truth"*

*Not actual truth; see product for details; beware of heavy amounts of bullshit; void where prohibited

Today is National Day of Truth, a protest created by the Alliance Defense Fund in response to the National Day of Silence. The basic idea of National Day of Silence is that lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered (hereafter referred to as LGBT or Queer) are bullied, harassed, closeted by general intolerance, and basically, silenced. Sometimes that silencing has meant death. In order to draw awareness to the issue and try to raise tolerance, members of the Queer community and their allies spend a day in silent protest, usually handing out a small flyer to explain why they are silent.

Notice that the description doesn't really say much about defending homosexuality on moral grounds, nor does it touch any issues like same-sex marriage or adoption, it simply, more or less, sets out to try and bring a stop bullying and homophobia. Many religious groups, protestant and catholic alike, usually explain that they are against bullying, intolerance, hatred, name-calling, etc, even though they stand firm on their belief that any sort of deviance from the heterosexual norm is a sin and ultimately wrong. So why, then, would you protest something you should be standing behind? Some like to insist that National Day of Silence is really just part of a larger immoral agenda, and so they cannot stand behind it. Personally I like to think of that defense as both so much hand waving and bullshit, you see I've got this crazy notion that if you don't want to see people being harassed and harmed because of who they are, then you stand behind that position, period. Perhaps a look at their mission statement will shed more light on things:

"I am speaking the Truth to break the silence. Silence isn't freedom. It's a constraint. Truth tolerates open discussion, because the Truth emerges when healthy discourse is allowed. By proclaiming the Truth in love, hurts will be halted, hearts will be healed, and lives will be saved."

Looking at this it almost seems like they completely miss the point of Day of Silence to begin with. "Silence isn't freedom?" Yeah, no kidding, in fact, you might even say that Day of Silence is against people being silenced. Oh wait....that IS what it's about. Do they missunderstand the use of silence as a device to draw attention to the harm of being silenced? Perhaps. Of course, it's also possible that they're not neccesarily stupid, that they know full well what Day of Silence is about, but nonetheless thought some rhetoric about "truth" would be a good way to once again promote their flagship lie, that all gay people are unhappy and in need of their

God's truth is that gay people aren't born with their sexuality, and the choices they've made or the gay-inducing traumas they've suffered can be fixed! Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain, nor to the facts. Facts are bad, and so are numbers. Numbers lie, especially the kind that point out strong correlations between sexuality and biological factors or the kind that show small long term success rates for ex-gays.


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