I was raised right, as we say in the South. My mom, a genteel Southern lady, taught me it was impolite to talk about politics or religion in public. And I was taught that some subjects are not discussed in mixed company.
I like to think of myself as a good son, so I’m not going to disagree with Mom, but I will definitely disobey her here. Therefore as I begin this new blog...and in the interest of full disclosure, let me get a few things out in the open early, so there’s no confusion and no surprise.
First, the subject of politics will come up on my blog. I rarely argue the subject, but am fairly passionate about some of the issues considered “political.” For the record, I’m a Democrat. There was a time when I identified as a Republican, but for many reasons, I abandoned that party, and can no longer in good conscience support any candidate with that affiliation. I’m not saying there aren’t some good folks who support them, but since the adopted party platform has explicitly denounced me, I will return the favor.
Second, on the topic of religion, I am a Christian. My faith has been a vital part of the my life for more than 40 years. I don’t peddle it and I don’t push it. I will answer questions about it, but I am not inclined to prove it. I’ve been accused of being harsh on the Christian faith, and I guess that’s true…particularly when it’s prostitutionalized (and diminished) with right-right politics. If you adhere to a different faith, that’s okay. I’m not going to try and convert you. If you reject faith, and consider yourself an atheist or agnostic, that’s fine; I won’t challenge you. And the only time I might bristle concerning my faith is I’m told I can’t possibly be a Christian. Or when people make blanket, dismissive statements about “all Christians,” as if we are all the same. (For more about my background, check out my bio page.)
Likewise, I consider myself an Evangelical, though in light of modern examples who claim that name and the unfortunate alignment with Fundamentalism, I do reserve the right to define what that means. For me, it goes back to the original meaning of the Greek word, which essentially means “good news.” At one time, it connoted those who were committed to a simple form of New Testament Christianity rather than an organizational structure. In my definition—and in my life—it’s the belief that God loves us and has good plans for us.
Finally, under the banner of subjects we don’t normally discuss in polite company, I'm gay. I am in a relationship, and we’ve been together for 15+ years. I don’t see my sexual orientation as defining who I am, but it is an integral part. Because of my involvement in politics, I actively seek to advance the rights and equality of the LGBT community. And because of my past involvement in ex-gay/reparative programs, I work diligently to expose the lies and harm they bring.
I’m Christian, gay and political. Oh, and we can add opinionated!
It’s an incomplete picture of me—just a few parts—but it serves as an introduction.