September 4, 2013

IconChristians Speak Up! Let The World Know “We’re Not All Like That”


Many of you know about, and perhaps have even contributed to, the “It Gets Better” campaign that was started by author and speaker Dan Savage in the fall of 2010. The campaign is a collection of video testimonials that feature people (and celebrities) telling their own stories to LGBT youth, promising them that life gets easier, life gets better, growing up LGBT. Well, if you were ever wondering about an “It Gets Better” directed at Christians or struggling LGBT Christians, you need look no further. The “NALT Christians Project” has officially launched, and much like the “It Gets Better” project, the growth and success depends on people like you to contribute and share.

“Not All Like That”, or “NALT Christians”, is a term coined by Mr. Savage after hearing Christians pledge or plead to him that “we’re not all like that” in order to defend Christianity. Of course he knows that, but that doesn’t change the fact that the loudest, most well known Christians happen to be the ones who “are like that”, the homophobic conservatives calling down the brimstone on gay sinners.

I have been a follower of Dan Savage’s columns for a long time now, despite our differing views on God and Christianity. Though we disagree on on our spiritual views, one thing we definitely agree on is the harm that Christian leaders and speakers are causing to young, impressionable LGBT kids, whether they are Christian or not. In his video, and certainly in his writings, Dan Savage calls out the likes of Pat Robinson (founder of the Christian Broadcasting Network who actually said “Feminism is a socialist, anti-family, political movement that encourages women to leave their husbands, kill their children, practice witchcraft, destroy capitalism and become lesbians.”), Brian Brown (president of NOM-you know, your favorite organization that fights to demolish marriage equality), and Tony Perkins (President of The Family Research Council, which has distributed a pamphlet that claims gay men are more likely to molest children, and supports “reorientation” for gay people). He brings these men up because they are well known, well funded, powerful Christian men who allegedly speak for the “Christian people”, and boy do they speak loudly. The fact is, we are not all like that, and it is time that we speak up.

On a personal note, I am a Christian woman who identifies as bisexual, and I know firsthand how painful it is when Christians, especially those that are part of your spiritual family, rain down hateful slogans or offer to pray for you, but not in a supportive way. I created the comic “Jesus Loves Lesbians, Too” as a way to share my story and to provide an outlet for other young Christians who are trying to reconcile their faith and their sexuality, those that feel like they have no one to talk to, no one to understand. Today, confident and strong in my sexuality and beliefs, I find comfort in the videos posted on the NALT site. Ten years ago, these videos and these people could have provided a lot more than that to a young girl who was scared to tell her Christian friends about her new girlfriend.

Here’s where you come in, readers. If you are a Christian, and you want other young LGBT people and young Christians to know that we are not all like that, post a video to their YouTube site. If you have Christian friends who have never stopped loving you because of your sexuality, send them the link. Share on Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, or any and every other site you can think of, and share often. Together, our voices can diminish those loud and few who claim to speak for God and God’s people. Together, we can show those that need our love and support that we are not all like that, and that they are not alone.


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Maria Burnham


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