|Friday, 24 January2003|
|Here is a news item from the latest "Focus-on-the-Family" e-mail news updates:
"Report: Gay Men Seeking HIV
One out of four newly HIV-infected men actively sought out the
disease, according to a new article in Rolling Stone magazine. John
Paulk, the manager of Focus on the Family's homosexuality and
gender department, said that is actually old news within the gay
"Young men, especially in cities like San Francisco, have considered
themselves 'pre-AIDS,' " Paulk said. "In other words, they're not HIV
positive, but they know that they will eventually get AIDS and often
seek it out."
He said the attitude shows the hopeless desperation of young gay
men. They feel that unless they have AIDS they're not a full part of
the homosexual community.
"What that says to us is that homosexuality is not just a normal
variant of sexuality," Paulk said. "That, inherently, within
homosexuality are negative consequences -- psychologically,
emotionally -- and you see the negative health risks."
Paulk said homosexuality leads people to think their life is worth so
little, that purposefully catching a deadly disease would actually
improve their outlook."
Yes, regrettably, it is old news. People have been tracking this phenomenon for a number of years now, especially in San Francisco. As might be expected, there are whole websites devoted to the giving and receiving of this "gift" from one gay man to another. I have heard it explained that some gay men feel "left out" because they are not HIV infected. Those who are infected supposedly get all the attention, so they want to feel part of "it." I agree that it is unbelievable and very sad. The fatalistic attitude is killing people, which may be obvious with fatalistic attitudes, but it is still astounding nonetheless.
This has a lot to say about the hedonistic focus of those who yell the loudest in the homosexual community. In the same way that advocates of wearing condoms in the early '80's where labeled "sexual Nazis" by many gay men who didn't want to believe the fact of HIV/AIDS and didnt want to stop having unrestricted sex in any way, so are those who strongly advocate for sexual sanity today, for an end to the sexual obsession of gay men, for the idea of living for something other then hedonistic pleasure. All one has to do is look at most gay publications, parties, the pervasiveness of porn, etc., to understand that we as a subculture are obsessed with sex and hedonism. It needs to stop, because there is something so much better and life-giving, but when the very element of society that helps calm the savage beast within us, the Church, rejects gay people and perpetuates the notion that gays are hopeless and evil, why should the Way of Christ have any appeal any longer? People, who make up the Church, may have rejected and condemned homosexuals, by God has not.
It is an uphill battle to convince the homosexual community that despite want anti-gay, prohibitionist Christians say, God does love gay people and desires a full life for us, in the same way God desires a full life for heterosexual people. Their brand of Christianity is distorted, and even though no of knows fully what the complete Way of God comprises (I Corn. 13:9-12), we can fully understand that we are to love God with all of ourselves, and love our neighbor as ourselves. That is the element they forget to employ.
I agree that there is definitely something wrong, not just spiritually but psychologically/emotionally, with anyone who intentionally becomes infected with a deadly virus that despite medical advances will still kill most of them. It has to do with feelings of immortality that most young people posses; it has to do with a life devoid of anything other then what feels good - a nice hold over from the 60's and 70's; it comes from not understanding who we are and what we are capable of in God; it comes from a subculture that encourages sexual-obsession; it comes from a subculture that has been so devastated and reviled by the Church and "love-the-sinner" Christians that they have rejected the Church, Christians, and most horribly of all God; it comes from a sense of hopelessness and fatalism. As the article said, "...they're not HIV positive, but they know that they will eventually get AIDS and often seek it out." Men, apart from God, do what men do - whether straight or gay - young men would have sex with as many people as they could if there were not social strictures to lessen the impact of the libido. Within the male gay subculture, because it is made up of only men and because of the rejection they experience from those who could advocate for sexual-sanity, the strictures are far less effective.
The problem with the Focus-on-the-Family report, however, is that they lump all homosexuals into this same category. This is something the prohibitionist Christians love to do - demonize a whole group of people. They have done it to so many, gay people being only the latest rendition of the ploy. The fact is, most gay people do not seek out the HIV virus. Most I know, even though they are not Christians and therefore do not abide my the same moral codes that we strive to live by, go to great lengths to avoid the virus. Most gay people I know live relatively conservative lives - they are faithfully partnered or looking to be, they are not sex-obsessed, they are not drug abusers, they are not pedophiles, they are people who live like most single or married straight folks, despite what the politicized, anti-gay, prohibitionist Christians what everyone to believe.
So, when Paulk says, "...homosexuality leads people to think their life is worth so little, that purposefully catching a deadly disease would actually improve their outlook," that's what Focus-on-the-Family and other anti-gay Christian organizations what society to believe so that their whole "ex-gay" theology, pseudo-psychology, and political demands will be accept by the common American - thus the outlawing of homosexuality and any positive portrayal of gay people. The reason that many gay people still believe that their lives are worth so little is because people like Paulk and their like-minded organizations demand that homosexuals be hopeless and immoral and that society and the Church do everything it can to perpetuate that attitude among gay people. Their view is that homosexuality is evil, thus "practicing" homosexuals are also, and they want everyone to believe that, despite the "love-the-sinner" rhetoric. They want homosexuals to believe they themselves are evil and incapable of living a good life, a moral life, and a fulfilled life. They want gay people to believe that God rejects them outright, and therefore they have no ability to live a life worthy of anything. They want gay people to believe it so that they will allow ex-gay ministries to bring "healing" to their lives in God - except that their base understanding of the whole gay issue begins with a misinterpretation of scripture. They want gay people to live miserable lives because it enables them to perpetuate their anti-gay theology and ideology. A non-Christian gay subculture gives them something to hate it gives them a scapegoat for the worlds ills. If prohibitionist Christians and their organizations did portrayed the gay-subculture as it really is, a mirror of straight culture with some excesses in different areas of life, they would not have a money-raising machine, they would not have a reason to exist, they would not demonize to scapegoat.
There are nihilistic, fatalistic, emotionally screwed-up gay males who are out there trying to be infected with HIV because of a whole number of reasons, none of which is acceptable. We need God's saving grace to live life to the full, as it was meant to be lived. We need to advocate strongly for a rejection of hedonism within all walks of life - because it pulls us away from true life, from true freedom, and from true satisfaction. What we don't need is people trying to demonize whole groups, and then doing everything they can to perpetuate the very reasons so many in that group find themselves screwed-up. Yes, as Paulk and Focus-on-the-Family says, it is sad. The problem is the conclusions they draw.
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