Religious Freedom vs Discrimination

March 27, 2014 Updated: April 23, 2016

First, let’s be clear: I have views on this subject–and many others–that are not considered “politically correct.” I was raised as a Christian, and although I no longer follow that path, I do still have many of the same beliefs that I did then. Keeping that in mind:

Since the Christians are primarily the ones who are up-in-arms over this issue, and since I do understand–to some degree–that angle, let’s look at it from their perspective a bit.

With many Christians, homosexuality is truly an unacceptable way of living. In their view, from the perspective of their teachings, it is a sin. Definitely an egregious one. Certainly one that could cause dire consequences to one’s immortal soul. They may truly find it disgusting and difficult to accept–even from a distance.

For a lot of Christians, however, it is my belief that they are not really interested in persecuting homosexuals; they are mostly just not wanting to be confused with supporting them or condoning what they deem “ungodly” behavior. They fear that any involvement with homosexuals equates to acceptance, which others of their faith may use as an excuse to ostracize them, too.

Several years ago, there was the “What would Jesus do?” (WWJD?) movement, and since I was a practicing Christian for a time in my life and I believe that this is a valid way of looking at things if you are a Christian, I tend to always come back to that when considering issues involving Christian religious behavior. 

So, let’s look at it from that angle–what would Jesus do? If Jesus were building homes (He was a carpenter by trade, right?), would He refuse to build for a homosexual? Or would He build the best home He could for them and treat them with the unfathomable compassion and tolerance that He showed to prostitutes and beggars and lepers? 

If the issue is what your fellow parishioners believe about you, why do you care? If you truly believe in God, then you know that God knows what is really in your heart, so why worry about what others might think?  Isn’t that just a test of your fundamental faith? If you truly believe in your religion, then shouldn’t you just be making sure that you behave as your God has demonstrated to you with His own behavior? 

Even when Christians were thrown into the lion’s den, they kept their faith. So, why can’t you do it when faced with some people who believe differently than you do–and who are not even planning to eat you?

Christians often tout saving people as their mission in life, right? If you truly want people to be saved, why not show them the kind of compassion and tolerance that has a chance of moving their hearts in the right direction, instead of setting yourself (and your religion) against them, condemning them (from your standpoint) to damnation?

What good can come from your discrimination (religious freedom?) of anyone? Who is that going to help? Is that really going to help them? Is it even going to help you?

It’s pretty simple, folks, right? Just treat people–all people–the way you would have them treat you.  If you can do that, then when faced with your own judgement, will anyone be able to find fault with your behavior?