Saturday, May 10, 2014

The Acts 27 test, 12: The homosexualist activist driven career-busting incidents with Mozilla's CEO and a House and Garden TV show indicate an agenda to brand, stigmatise, ostracise, ghetto-ise (and possibly implicitly criminalise) the Christian faith

Some weeks back, Matt Barber, an activist who opposes the homosexualist agenda (and whose rhetoric is sometimes fairly shrill . . . but, he is putting his finger on something we need to attend to), wrote:
In a recent column titled, “Why Are They Called ‘Homofascists’? Here’s Why,” I wrote that “progressive,” “Christian-hating fascists” – but I repeat myself – are “hell-bent on criminalizing Christianity and pushing to the fringes anyone who publicly acknowledges natural human sexuality and the age-old, immutable institution of legitimate marriage as created by God.”

I was referring specifically to the left’s well-organized and highly disturbing character assassination of former Mozilla CEO Brendan Eich for his private support of natural marriage. I was also addressing the larger goal of the American left to completely shut down free speech and freedom of religion and to severely punish anyone who maintains both biblically and biologically correct views on human sexuality.

I closed with this: “They smell blood in the water. I’ve often said that these folks want those who speak biblical truth about human sexuality and legitimate marriage either 1) dead, 2) imprisoned or, if they can have neither of these, 3) marginalized to the point where they can’t even support their families.

“Check No. 3 off the list. I guess they’re working backwards.”

The very next day, and as if right on cue, lefty rag Slate magazine vomited evidence of my claims. It could not have been better scripted if I’d written it myself.

In an article titled, “Purge the Bigots,” Slate writer William Saletan penned these chilling words: “Some of my colleagues are celebrating. They call Eich a bigot who got what he deserved. I agree. But let’s not stop here. If we’re serious about enforcing the new standard, thousands of other employees who donated to the same anti-gay ballot measure must be punished.

“More than 35,000 people gave money to the campaign for Proposition 8, the 2008 ballot measure that declared, ‘Only marriage between a man and a woman is valid or recognized in California,’” he continued. “Why do these bigots still have jobs? Let’s go get them.”
I think, perhaps over the top and shrill, but there is something in it that we do need to hear and address fairly and squarely.

Barber does note that,  

Now, to be fair, Saletan later claimed that his article was intended as satire to illustrate the hypocrisy of his own “progressive” movement. Many, if not most, of his readers seemed to miss the joke,and the article’s comments section quickly filled with people agreeing that it was, indeed, time to “purge the bigots” (read: Christians).

The Fox News Channel observed that the piece “may or may not be tongue-in-cheek.” Satire is traditionally somewhat clever, witty and fairly easy to recognize as such. Mr. Saletan’s piece was none of these things. Nevertheless, I will give him the benefit of the doubt . . .
The Benham brothers (HT: Fox)
The problem we now face, is that within a few weeks, there has been another headlined incident, where House and Garden TV has tossed an upcoming series on "House Flipping" into the trash can, after "Right Wing Watch" sought to "out" the twin brothers involved with the series as Christian activists who oppose homosexualism, abortion, adultery, high divorce rates, etc. -- with homosexualism the main concern.

Todd Starnes of Fox News, comments:
Twins David and Jason Benham had been in production for “Flip it Forward,” a show that was expected to debut in October on the nation’s seventh most-watched cable channel. According to Entertainment Weekly, the North Carolina brothers “would have followed families creating their dream homes from fixer-uppers.”

After the network announced the show was on the fall lineup, the militant lobbying group Right Wing Watch labeled David Benham, son of well-known evangelical pastor Flip Benham  an “anti-gay extremist” and reported on comments he made about homosexuality, abortion and divorce.
In addition, David participated in public protests against such things, and in a follow up radio interview, remarked:
“We don’t realize that, okay, if 87 percent of Americans are Christians and yet we have abortion on demand; we have no-fault divorce; we have pornography and perversion; we have a homosexuality and its agenda that is attacking the nation; we have adultery; we have all of the things; we even have allowed demonic ideologies to take our universities and our public school systems while the church sits silent and just builds big churches,” Benham told the host. 

“We are so complacent, we are so apathetic and we are very hypocritical in the church, that’s why the Bible says judgment begins in the house of God. So when we prayed at 714 we asked God and our city to forgive us for allowing these things in the house of God.”
This of course implies that he first sees the Churches as at fault for hypocrisy and sin, and silence in the face of rampant sin. The implication is, repentance and reformation need to start at the house of God.

Right Wing Watch -- itself a telling name -- clearly sees such things as bigotry, and obviously pressured HGTV to shut down the show lest it take up the taint of such Bible-believing Christian views. Thus, boxing bread out of Christian mouths, seeking to silence and intimidate those who object to the accelerating moral decay of our civilisation, attempting to lock us away into a cultural ghetto, and finally create an atmosphere in which through hate speech etc laws, voices can be silenced on pain of criminal sanctions.

 HGTV is in the position of either going along with this line, or else is acting on fear of the implications of offending radical activists with access to the sort of media power the homosexualist lobby now enjoys. Which is the same thing that just happened to Mozilla, over its CEO.

The excuse/ rationalisation that is usually offered is that these are private, commercial entities and so are making a marketing decision, in interests of profits.

 The hollowness of this talking point can be easily seen: would one tolerate an argument that exclusion of black people, women or Jews, or retaliation against civil rights advocates in the work place can be justified on commercial costs of lost customers grounds?

Obviously not.

Such lame excuses would be spotted as cover-ups for bigotry.

So the REAL issue, is that Bible-believing Christians who stand up and speak up for their faith on ethical matters clearly taught in the Scriptures, are being accused, branded and pushed aside as ignorant and/or hateful, potentially violent bigots. With the onward implication being, that the Christian Scriptures -- which are often intemperately attacked and denounced by radical activists -- are to be regarded as hate speech writings.

And of course, we are right back at the "my genes made me do it" concept of homosexuality. 

So, let us again pause and point out, from the corrective book of that title:
The West has been subject to such a campaign of misinformation and disinformation in the last 20-30 years that its public institutions, from legislatures and judiciaries to the church and mental health professions widely believe that the homosexual orientation is innate—in the sense of biologically imprinted—and therefore unchangeable. 
The implications of this are that anyone who makes the scientifically true statements below is considered the one who is misinformed.
• sexual orientation is not inborn but develops over some years in response to an individual’s response to life events— as many human predicaments do
• homosexual orientation can change, i.e half the homosexual population naturally moves towards heterosexuality over time (without any therapeutic interventions), and further and
faster with counselling and support
• The same-sex attracted are not 10% of the population but (including bisexuals) much closer to 2.5%
The West has lost its way on this issue, and today we are seeing the outcome . . . .
• Genetically dictated behaviour is something that has so far been discovered only in very simple organisms.
• From an understanding of gene structure and function there are no plausible means by which genes could inescapably force SSA or other behaviours on a person. Genes create proteins not preferences.
• No genetically determined human behaviour has yet been found. The most closely genetically-related behaviour yet discovered (aggression in Dutch males) has shown itself remarkably responsive to counselling.
• If SSA were genetically dictated, it would have bred itself out of the population in only several generations, and wouldn’t be around today.
• Generally, geneticists settle for some genetic influence of rather undefined degree, most agreeing that many genes (from at least five or six to many hundreds) contribute to any particular human behaviour.
• A genetically dominated SSA caused by such a cluster of genes could not suddenly appear and disappear in families the way it does. It would stay around for many generations. So SSA is not produced by many genes.
• The occurrence of SSA in the population is too frequent to be caused by a chance mutation in a single gene. So a single gene is not responsible for SSA. Nor would many genes all mutate at once.
• SSA occurs too frequently to be caused by a faulty pre-natal developmental process, so it is not innate in that sense either.
• The widespread age-range of first homosexual attraction is very unlike the narrow time-spread of genetically driven phases of human life, e.g gestation time, puberty, menopause, making homosexuality very unlikely to be genetically driven.
• The histone system which controls genetic expression is strongly affected by the environment, e.g nurturing, making searches for individual genes responsible for certain behaviours, mostly pointless.
• Same-sex attraction could be about 10% genetically influenced and opposite sex attraction about 15%. But this is weak and indirect, e.g genes making a man tall don’t also produce basketball players.
• SSA falls more naturally into the category of a psychological trait
So, first and foremost, we have to face the problem of a deliberately fostered, widely accepted cultural myth intended to create a turnabout, that instead of homosexual behaviour being seen as a moral challenge, it is those who challenge it who are seen as bigots. Then, despite serious issues over the further -- perhaps fatal -- destabilisation of marriage and family -- the advocates created out of whole cloth a notion of "marriage equality" and pushed for so-called "same-sex marriage." 

This is spreading far and wide across our civilisation, being wafted along by media fanning.

So, now, anyone who questions this agenda -- especially on grounds of morality, including that to claim a right one has to first show that what he is claiming is in the right -- is likely to be a target for demonising accusation, stereotyping, scapegoating, silencing and scapegoating.

I therefore find the following points from an article comment exchange in an entertainment industry site, sadly revealing:
 a: Do people still care or worry that two gays get married? Unbelievable, I consider that a mental disorder.

 b: As far as I can tell no one has been imprisoned or punished in any real way. They ARE completely free to express their opinions. As the network is completely free to let them go. If I’m at work and I say something that part of my customer base my be offended by…I will be terminated. Granted, they weren’t at work, however, they have chosen a job which puts them in the public spotlight. Do you think any gay folks watch HGTV?

 c: What country do you think you live in? Of course you can choose not to hire someone if you think they’re a bigot. There’s no equal protection law that says people have to hire you regardless of your being a jackass. And conflating the choice to drop this show with making hiring decisions based on skin color is ridiculous. You don’t choose the color of your skin, but you do choose to hold and express bigoted opinions.
d: Part of being tolerant is opposing views that are intolerant. Believing that gay people are evil is intolerant.
While there are  objections, some of them well put, this pattern of views -- especially the last one -- is highly revealing.

As balance, let me clip perhaps the best articulated objection:
e:  The Benham brothers did not perform any act of discrimination. They didn’t refuse to provide services to homosexuals. They didn’t attempt to deprive any homosexual of their civil rights. They haven’t refused to associate with homosexuals. They aren’t forcing homosexuals to sit at the back of the bus, or attend separate schools, or attempted to deprive them of due process or the right to earn a living or hold public office.

Their only sin is not thinking the thoughts some folks think they should think. Their show has been dropped not for anything they’ve DONE, but for holding the “wrong” sort of personal opinions.
What you’re advocating is pure bigotry, intolerance and discrimination. You’re arguing that employers should have the right to hire or not hire an individual based not on that individual’s qualifications for the job, but for holding unwelcome opinions on subjects completely unrelated to the employment offered. This is no different than refusing to hire someone just because you don’t like the color of his skin.

“We don’t hire the wrong sort of people here.” And, apparently, you have arrogated to yourself the right to decide what the “wrong sort of people” are.
Let us first clip Girgis et al, on marriage, so we can better understand what is fundamentally at stake (apart from marginalisation, bullying radical advocacy, censorship and the like): 
[T]he current debate is precisely over whether it is possible for the kind of union that has marriage’s essential fea‐tures to exist between two people of the same sex. Revisionists do not propose leaving intact the historic definition of marriage and simply expanding the pool of people eligible to marry. Their goal is to abolish the conjugal conception of marriage in our law [F/N 10] and replace it with the revisionist [--> i.e. homosexualised] conception . . . ----------
[F/N 10:] Throughout history, no society’s laws have explicitly forbidden gay mar‐riage. They have not explicitly forbidden it because, until recently, it has not been thought possible . . . [T]raditional marriage laws  were not devised to oppress those with same‐sex attractions. The comparison [to racist anti-miscegenation laws that forbade inter-racial marriages]  is offensive, and puzzling to many—not least to the nearly two‐thirds of black vot‐ers who voted to uphold conjugal marriage under California Proposition Eight. [--> Note, the recent public witch-hunt against the then CEO of Mozilla corp., publisher of Firefox browser, for the thought-crime of daring to personally support this proposition, which forced his resignation; a plain case of "your conscience or your job." ]  See Cara Mia DiMassa & Jessica Garrison, Why Gays, Blacks are Divided on Prop. 8, L.A. TIMES, Nov. 8, 2008, at A1.

 [Sherif Girgis, Robert P. George, & Ryan T. Anderson, "What is Marriage?" Harvard Journal of Law & Public Policy, Vol 34, No. 1, p. 250 of 245 - 287.])
And, let us note too, what Lesbian activist Masha Gessen has plainly stated . . . to the accompaniment of applause:



(You REALLY need to carefully listen to the audio, to understand why I am writing this post, in defence of conscience, rights, real marriage, children and the future of our civilisation.)

In short, the assertion of a claimed civil right to the novelty of so-called same-sex marriage is profoundly tied to the foundations of our society, and to core moral principles regarding creation order established human sexual nature and the needs of children for stable families formed by their parents, for them to grow up in and thrive. Where also, the Creation order that establishes marriage as between man and woman, is patent from the complementarity of the two sexes. 

But, the past century has repeatedly demonstrated that -- with suitable indoctrination duly amplified by the media -- masses can be brought to believe almost any absurdity, especially if it wears a lab coat.

In that context the attempt we just saw, to compare those who object to homosexualisation of our civilisation the insane or to racists is loaded with quite patently dangerous implications and precedents. 

The insane are not responsible and are legitimately excluded from many activities and forms of employment. 

Racists are seen as in violation of fundamental human equality/ fairness/ rights and so are subject to civil penalties that are viewed as just.

This brings us back to the core issue, what is a right.

A right, in simple terms, is a moral expectation or demand to be respected and treated fairly, given our dignity as human beings. That is why it is obviously wrong to kidnap, rape and murder a child, and it is why if we see that happening we will naturally try to stop the monster.

But that means that, to properly claim a right, the claim must first be in the right.

In short: we are morally governed, intelligent, en-conscienced creatures

That's why the Psalmist wrote: “Do not be like an unintelligent horse or mule, which will not obey you unless they are controlled by a bridle and bit.” [Ps. 32:9, NET.]

That's also why the American Founders wrote, in the US Declaration of Independence, 1776:

We hold these truths to be self-evident, [cf Rom 1:18 - 21, 2:14 - 15], that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. 
[NB: --> genuine happiness, here, is being understood . . . in light of the underlying Biblical, Judaeo-Christian framework that contributed so much (that has now been largely forgotten) to the rise of modern liberty and democratic self government . . . as finding and fulfilling one's purpose under God, so that rights naturally emerge from the duty to not interfere with another person's calling under God -- which, patently, will also be shaped by the requirement to act by the right, the good, the just, the true, the loving, and will therefore reflect the point that evil is a twisting, a perversion, a privation and frustration of the good out of its proper order and purpose under God . . . ]
 --That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, --That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People [--> notice, people, individually . . . and collectively, the People, have rights; Governments have delegated powers on condition of justice] to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. 
[--> defines legitimacy and the primary purpose of government under God as defending the civil peace of justice, leading to the issue that a government may fail so badly it needs to be drastically changed, including not only the officials, but the framework in which they operate . . . ]
Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security  . . . 
[--> asserts the right of reformation, and if all else fails, revolution under legitimate leadership, similar to the Israelites dealing with Pharaoh under Moses and Aaron; nb: the modern general election is a regular solemn public assembly for audit of existing Government and an institutional means for peaceful revolution; cf. wider discussion here on in context . . . ]

Being under such moral government is also a strong sign that we are under a Moral Governor, the inherently good Creator God. Who, has made us male and female, and instituted marriage. So, among many other things . . .  our Creator defines marriage, not some clever activist. As Jesus said in Matthew 19, what God has joined – Adam and Eve – let no man cut asunder.

So, too, the root issue is that we see here a perversion of creation order demanding the moral high ground of being regarded as a right, and now setting about bullying, intimidating and marginalising, career busting -- boxing bread out of mouths let us not forget, crushing consciences, violating rights to freedom of expression and worship through imposing a new censorship and ostracism, stereotyping and scapegoating  those who dare question or object. 

So, much is at stake on these matters. 


And in that context, we should again note that there is no decisive body of empirically valid evidence that homosexual behaviour is genetically stamped and innate; indeed . . . as we saw above . . . just the opposite. 

Moreover, we cannot ignore certain painful facts. E.g., the US CDC admits that “gay” men (including “bisexuals”) are forty times more likely to have HIV/AIDS than the general population. No wonder, some sixty percent of new infections occur among that quite small fraction. Highly promiscuous, insanitary, damaging male homosexual activity -- for cause --  is a major health concern. So, while heterosexual promiscuity is also a concern – hence ABc,Abstain, Be faithful or . . . if you insist on risky behaviour . . . use a condom” . . .  – we cannot avoid facing unpleasant facts.

Nor, can we brush off moral issues by shifting focus to avoiding “stigma,” or through clever arguments that “human rights must prevail over religious objections,” or by leaving the impression that only ignorant bigots and violent bullies object to homosexual behaviour or to the manipulation of marriage. 

And, again, there is no well-founded scientific case that when it comes to sexual behaviour, “my genes made me do it” – never mind what is commonly assumed or implied in the media.
We are choosing, responsible creatures, with minds and consciences of our own.

Which means, we need to heed the counsel of Isaiah 5:

Is 5:20 Woe to those who call evil good
    and good evil,
who put darkness for light
    and light for darkness,
who put bitter for sweet
    and sweet for bitter!
21 Woe to those who are wise in their own eyes,
    and shrewd in their own sight!

22 Woe to those who are heroes at drinking wine,
    and valiant men in mixing strong drink,
23 who acquit the guilty for a bribe,
    and deprive the innocent of his right! 
24 Therefore, as the tongue of fire devours the stubble,
    and as dry grass sinks down in the flame,
so their root will be as rottenness,
    and their blossom go up like dust;
for they have rejected the law of the Lord of hosts,
    and have despised the word of the Holy One of Israel.  [ESV]
And, while there may be “pleasures of sin for a season,” in the end “the wages of sin is death.” So, it should be no surprise that – never mind how strong our sexual feelings are – our sexual behaviour and even feelings can be brought under disciplined control in light of moral principle.

That's not just common sense. 

Thousands of people – often motivated spiritually – have turned from homosexual behaviour, and have curbed the linked desires. That is similar to the more familiar habitual fornicators or swindlers or drunkards in bondage to old demon rum. Indeed, two thousand years ago the apostle Paul pointed out the purifying power of grace:

1 Corinthians 6:9-11

New English Translation (NET)

Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived! The sexually immoral, idolaters, adulterers, passive homosexual partners, practicing homosexuals [--> i.e. the active "partners"], 10 thieves, the greedy, drunkards, the verbally abusive, and swindlers will not inherit the kingdom of God. 11 Some of you once lived this way. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.
And in case you are given over to the notion that the Christian faith is little more than an ill-founded myth that can be dismissed, I first suggest you pause and watch here:

The Case for Christ by Lee Strobel from Slaves4Christ on Vimeo.

( Cf. also here.)

In turn, that brings us to the issue of the foundation of morality and the underlying irretrievable intellectual and moral bankruptcy of the driving force behind radical secularism, the worldview of evolutionary materialism dressed up in a lab coat.

 First, let us observe noted spokesman Richard Dawkins:
Nature is not cruel, only pitilessly indifferent. This lesson is one of the hardest for humans to learn. We cannot accept that things might be neither good nor evil, neither cruel nor kind, but simply callous: indifferent to all suffering, lacking all purpose . . . . In a universe of electrons and selfish genes, blind physical forces and genetic replication, some people are going to get hurt, other people are going to get lucky, and you won’t find any rhyme or reason in it, nor any justice. The universe that we observe has precisely the properties we should expect if there is, at bottom, no design, no purpose, no evil and no good, nothing but pitiless indifference . . . . DNA neither cares nor knows. DNA just is. And we dance to its music. [ “God’s Utility Function,” Sci. Am. Aug 1995, pp. 80 - 85. Emphases added.]
Similarly, on "you won't find any rhyme or reason," we can note a point long since emphasised by noted evolutionary thinker J B S Haldane:

"It seems to me immensely unlikely that mind is a mere by-product of matter. For if my mental processes are determined wholly by the motions of atoms in my brain I have no reason to suppose that my beliefs are true. They may be sound chemically, but that does not make them sound logically. And hence I have no reason for supposing my brain to be composed of atoms. In order to escape from this necessity of sawing away the branch on which I am sitting, so to speak, I am compelled to believe that mind is not wholly conditioned by matter.” ["When I am dead," in Possible Worlds: And Other Essays [1927], Chatto and Windus: London, 1932, reprint, p.209. (Highlight and emphases added.)]
In short, there is a serious question as to whether evolutionary materialism can adequately ground the knowing, reasoning mind, and morals. This last reflects the IS-OUGHT gap issue that Hume and others have highlighted, such that only if there is a grounding IS in the basis of a given worldview, can that view support OUGHT as more than in the end, wishes, feelings and desires -- perhaps backed up by might and/or manipulation: might and manipulation make 'right' in effect.

Where, in a worldview founded on matter and energy interacting through blind chance and mechanical necessity across space and time, there plainly will be no such IS.

Arguably, then, evolutionary materialism is inherently amoral and radically relativist or even subjectivist, so that for instance Ruse and Wilson went on record:

Morality, or more strictly our belief in morality, is merely an adaptation put in place to further our reproductive ends. Hence the basis of ethics does not lie in God’s will  . . . In an important sense, ethics as we understand it is an illusion fobbed off on us by our genes to get us to cooperate. It is without external groundingEthics is illusory inasmuch as it persuades us that it has an objective reference. This is the crux of the biological position. [Michael Ruse & E. O. Wilson, “The Evolution of Ethics,” Religion and the Natural Sciences: The Range of Engagement, , ed. J. E. Hutchingson, Orlando, Fl.: Harcourt and Brace, 1991.]
That will of course immediately raise serious concerns among Christians, but it should also be of deep concern to secularists with intellectual integrity, as their underlying worldview is plainly intellectually and morally bankrupt.

Yes, for . . . again, it is necessary to rivet this home (it is so hard for the indoctrinated to see where they have gone wrong) . . . if we -- rightly -- sense that we OUGHT to respect rights, does that not point to a need for a framework for the world that grounds OUGHT?

(Something must.)
Where, across time, as the American Founders recognised,  the only IS that has shown capability to so ground OUGHT is the inherently good creator God, of whom we are stewards responsible for justice and good order in our communities as well as our souls.
So, in the end, those who are pushing the radical secularist agenda, whether in homosexualist form or on any of several other fronts, are fronting a position that is bankrupt, destabilising and arguably destructive to community and civilisation.

It is high  time to pause, take stock in light of sobering developments such as we are seeing, and do better. END