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OpEdNews Op Eds    H3'ed 3/17/12

Bigotry is Bigotry is Bigotry

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Message Gregory Paul

The advances in gay rights and acceptance have been astonishing (see The Gays are Winning).  But  there have been counter-efforts and setbacks as well. Here in Maryland the legislature has passed homosexual marriage rights that the governor will happily sign. The opposition will try to collect the necessary signatures to put the issue up for a referendum in November.

Most of the hostility to gay rights is religious in origin, predominantly Christian in the US. In this country much of the theistic resistance comes from the evangelical religious right, which is largely white. But in parts of the nation that have large black populations a lot of the opposition comes from more moderate African-American churches.

          They of all people should know better.

          The anti-gay black clergy are not only denying that they are bigots, as they deny that same sex marriage is a civil rights issue, they are complaining that their feelings are being hurt by the pro-gay criticism of their opposition. Let us be clear as to what is happening here. The black clergy has long assumed a leading role in promoting the civil rights of blacks as well as a number of other minorities. Good for them. But when it comes to homosexuals many of them are balking. Persons who have fought for, or honor those who fought for, the rights due to all Americans including the freedom to choose to enter a legal life contract with the person of their choice, are deciding that they are the ones who will choose who does, and does not, benefit from those same rights. This is high hypocrisy. The double standard of what is good enough for me is not good enough for you.

          Most homophobes, including those who are black, usually deny that they hate gays, They often claim to love them and only want what is best for them. Which is exactly what most white slave holders and segregationists used to say about persons of color. This is high paternalism. The arrogant narcissism of those who imagine that they know what is best for others, and that what is best is denying to the defectives what they the nondefectives enjoy and would be furious to be denied.

          Then there is the Bible. The sacred work whose divine dictates black clergy demand they must follow to remain faithful to their God. This is high cynicism. And an outright lie. Here's why.


Leviticus 19: "20 If a man sleeps with a woman who is a slave girl promised to another man but who has not been ransomed or given her freedom, there must be due punishment. Yet they are not to be put to death, because she had not been freed. 21 The man, however, must bring a ram to the entrance to the Tent of Meeting for a guilt offering to the Lord."


Leviticus 25: 44-46: "However, you may purchase male or female slaves from among the foreigners who live among you. You may also purchase the children of such resident foreigners, including those who have been born in your land. You may treat them as your property, passing them on to your children as a permanent inheritance. You must treat your slaves like this, but the people of Israel, your relatives, must never be treated this way."


Exodus 21: 20-21: "If a man strikes his male or female slave with a rod and he dies under his hand he shall be punished. If, however, he survives a day or two, no vengeance shall be taken, for he is his property."


Exodus 21: 26-27: "If a man hits a manservant or maidservant in the eye and destroys it, he must let the servant go free to compensate for the eye. And if he knocks out the tooth of a manservant or maidservant, he must let the servant go free to compensate for the tooth." 32: If the bull gores a male or female slave, the owner must pay thirty shekels of silver to the master of the slave, and the bull must be stoned."


Numbers 31: The instructions from Moses on how to treat the Midianite virgins not slaughtered along with the rest of the population. "But all the women children, that have not known a man by lying with him, keep alive for yourselves". You and Eleazar the priest and family heads of the community are to count all the people and animals that were captured. Divide the spoils between the soldiers who took part in the battle and the rest of the community. From the soldiers who fought in the battle, set apart as tribute for the Lord one out of every five hundred, whether persons, cattle, donkeys, sheep or goats. Take this tribute from their half share and give it to Eleazer the priest as the Lord's part. From the Israelites' half, select one out of every fifty, whether persons, cattle, donkeys, sheep, goats or other animals. Give them to the Levites, who are responsible for the care of the Lord's tabernacle. So Moses and Eleazar the priest did as the Lord commanded Moses. The plunder remaining from the spoils that the soldiers took was 675,000 sheep, 72,000 cattle, 61,000 donkeys and 32,000 women who had never slept with a man (italics added)."

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Gregory Paul is an independent researcher interested in informing the public about little known yet important aspects of the complex interactions between religion, secularism, culture, economics, politics and societal conditions. His scholarly work (more...)
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