“Are Christians supposed to employ the Christian side-hug on homosexuals or just not touch them at all?”
I’ll be honest, I thought it was a legitimate question. I mean, given the amount of literature on curing homosexuality that my local LifeWay Bookstore carries I assumed the clerk would have an answer.
“Are you trying to be a smart-aleck?” the clerk asked.
“I wouldn’t exactly say I’m trying.”
Outside of their books equating warmongering with Christian discipleship, Christian bookstores such as LifeWay sure want to make an impact on the lives of homosexuals. I guess they just want to touch them in a meaningful way. Turn them around and make sure they know they are behind them. You know, in order to fill them with love.
They tend to carry a large number of books dealing with homosexuality. When Homosexuality Hits Home (that should have been titled, When Homosexuality Hits a Home Run–I’d buy it), You Don’t Have to Be Gay (damn, who knew?), A Parent’s Guide to Preventing Homosexuality (try lots of masculine contact sports like wrestling), as well as Someone I Love is Gay: How Families and Friends Should Respond (interestingly enough, of all the possible responses they offer “acceptance” is not one of them).
The latter book got me thinking about how these, for the most part, conservative evangelicals could make an entire series out of this rubric. Here are some possible titles for them to work with:
Someone I Love is Black
Someone I Love is Hispanic
Someone I Love is Catholic
Someone I Love is an Hispanic Catholic
Someone I Love is Jewish
Someone I Love is a Feminist
Someone I Love Believes All People Should Have Adequate Health Care
Someone I Love Accepts Evolution
Someone I Love is an Illegal Immigrant
Someone I Love Doesn’t Believe that Adam and Eve Had a Pet T-Rex
Someone I Love is a non-Sexually Repressed Female Ex-Jew for Jesus Illegal Immigrant Darwin-Loving Hater of Contemporary Christian Music that Drives a Hybrid and Recycles Because They Are a Socialist Eco-Feminist and are Not as Concerned with Where Jack Tripper/McFarland/Harkness is Putting His Penis As I Am
Or, they could just title it: Someone I Love Thinks Differently Than Me: What Do I Do?
After all, that pretty much sums up most of our problems.
About the Author
Tripp York teaches religious studies at Virginia Wesleyan College in Norfolk, Virginia. He is the author of more than half a dozen books including, Third Way Allegiance, The Purple Crown, and Living on Hope While Living in Babylon. He is the co-editor of the forthcoming three-volume collection called the Peaceable Kingdom Series. An actor and a lighting designer, Tripp also surfs and spends his weekends shoveling elephant and giraffe poop.