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An Exchange with a Homosexual Man Upset with my Hate Crimes Article


From: W
Sent: Wednesday, May 02, 2007 10:15 AM
To: Robert Gagnon
Subject: Re: Let Pass a Hate Crimes Bill and Invite Your Own Oppression

I... I'm shocked. I thought, for a while, that you were a rational conservative: debating the side of traditional interpretation because that was honestly how you read the Biblical passages. But now all I can see in your messages about this Bill is Fear. You aren't looking at any evidence, not looking at the future with trust in God. You are speaking irrationally (by definition) out of Fear. I am deeply disappointed.

I know that you don't hate homosexuals, but it is suddenly so very clear that you Fear us. Why? Do you not trust God? Do you not see the evidence that your fear is completely unfounded?

What evidence? (First, please understand that I am *not* actually making a comparison between you and these terrorists, nor am I comparing homosexuality to race, but only holding them up as an example for my point.) The federal and state laws against racial hatred have been in force for quite some time, yet the KKK not only exists, but is allowed to voice it's opinions, hold meetings and demonstrations, bring court cases to further their beliefs. They are not forced to include blacks in their official ranks, nor Jews. And they are an extremist group bent on the establishment of evil subjugation of all non-whites! If *they* can survive, full of evil as they are and with no sympathizers in the major government offices,  surely conservative churches will survive this hate crimes bill and surely it too will be kept in check by the other laws governing the freedoms you so deeply fear loosing.

Fear destroys people Rob. When you fear, you will either run away (and be destroyed yourself) or you will try to destroy others. Frank Herbert's "Dune" says it very well:
    "I must not fear. Fear is the little Death that brings total oblivion. I will face my fear. I will allow it to pass over me and through me, and when I turn to see Fear's path, there will be nothing. Only I will remain." (Litany Against Fear)
And the Bible concurs "Do not be afraid" is the constant chant of every angel sent to man. "Hope and Love" is the chant of the risen Christ. Stop cowering and lashing out like a wounded animal! You give the lie to your other arguments this way. Stand up boldly and move forward until you see fit to stop, but don't act in fear, but in love, and you will be guided into the truth we all seek by the Holy Spirit.

Love ins Christ,


From: Robert Gagnon
Sent: Wednesday, May 02, 2007 12:15 PM
To: 'W
Subject: RE: Let Pass a Hate Crimes Bill and Invite Your Own Oppression

Hi W., 

Don't get excited. You have misread things. 

First, I am not paralyzed with fear. But neither am I a masochist that enjoys pain or a sadist that enjoys watching fellow believers being pained. The disciples slept a sleep of ignorance at Gethsemane; Jesus, knowing full well what was coming, was sweating bullets but fortifying himself in prayer. Not that what’s coming is equivalent but I think you get my basic point. 

Second, all that I’m saying is that Christians should wake up to the fact that ensconcing “sexual orientation” in federal law as the equivalent of race and sex will lead to a severe attenuation of their rights if they publicly make known their opposition to homosexual practice. It is astonishing to me how unnecessarily hyper-reactive your comments are. Christians who are opposed to societal validation of homosexual practice would be fools not to oppose strongly legislation that would lead to their own, and their children's, oppression.  

If you are not aware of the extent to which a KKK member—by the way a very disreputable group (my children, incidentally, are of 40% African descent)—has his role in civil society severely attenuated then you have lived a rather sheltered life. Of course even an organization like that can survive; but it gets no entrance into “good society.” You couldn’t teach at a single accredited institution in the U.S. for example, or hold a ‘white-collar’ job in the public sector, etc. and be a known member of the Klu Klux Klan. You couldn’t be accepted into any reputable college. You think that an adoption agency would be charged with discrimination if they refused Klu Klux Klan members adoption rights? You have been legally established as a bigot. It’s codified in the law. 

I’m shocked that you are so unaware of developments that have already taken place in Canada and Europe as regards the issue of “sexual orientation regulations.” Are you unaware, for example, of the man in Canada who was suspended without pay as a teacher simply for writing a “letter to the editor,” outside of the workplace, that tried to make a case against endorsement of homosexual practice? And that the British Columbia Supreme Court went further in ruling that persons in ‘white-collar’ professions could have their employment terminated if they engage in “discriminatory” speech or practice toward gays and lesbians even outside the workplace? Or have you not heard of the federal judge in Colorado who ruled that an ex-lesbian mother could not say anything negative about homosexual practice to her young daughter because it would corrupt her opinion of her lesbian ex-partner who was granted full joint custody?  

Until you read more widely on the subject we can’t get anywhere in discussing it. Read, for example, (from a Vanderbilt scholarly journal about developments in Canada) and also an article of mine at (pp. 10-18); and Alan Sears and Craig Osten, The Homosexual Agenda: Exposing the Principal Threat to Religious Freedom Today (Nashville: Broadman & Holman, 2003). 

Lastly, will you sign a notarized statement saying that you will pay the court costs and loss of income for me over the next ten years if I find myself facing legal action or loss of employment that might come from codifying “sexual orientation” and “gender identity” in the legal system as a specially protected category? 

I love you in Christ as a brother but you are incredibly naďve about the politics of the matter. 




From: W.
Sent: Wednesday, May 02, 2007 2:13 PM
To: Robert Gagnon
Subject: Re: Let Pass a Hate Crimes Bill and Invite Your Own Oppression

I did rant a bit more than I was trying to, and I'm sorry for that. And I may very well be a bit step or two more removed from the details of this Bill than you are. However, I do know something. I live in Massachusetts, and we have had orientation as a part of our hate crime legislation for years now. Yes there have been a few cases of it being abused, but our churches are still free to make their moral decisions without fear of repercussions. The vast majority of cases brought under these laws are decided on weather or not actual harmful discrimination has occurred; things even you would agree was wrong.

Bringing Canada into the discussion is almost laughable, as they have a long history of ruling against the church and against free speech that counters the majority. The US does not. Heck, even the ACLU would come to your aid if you asked them the right way if you lost your job because of your views!

And that's where I see your fear: your lack of trust. You are not paralyzed by fear, you are blinded by it, blinded from seeing the things that protect you as being strong enough. You and I disagree strongly on the theology around homosexuality, yet both of us still has the right to hold our views and discuss them, and all but the most virulent activists would agree. The Catholic Church still has the right not to admit women to the priesthood despite a huge difference in pay the office represents. Their right to their religious view and their right to act upon it is preserved.
Why are you so afraid that yours will not also be preserved?

Love in Christ,


From: Robert Gagnon
Sent: Wednesday, May 02, 2007 3:01 PM
To: 'W.
Subject: RE: Let Pass a Hate Crimes Bill and Invite Your Own Oppression


I think you may have the statement about my alleged blindness backwards.   

Your analogy about women is wholly misplaced because the church doesn’t declare that being a woman is sin. Even when traditionalist churches insist on male leadership they are careful to insist that this does not reflect on some inferiority of personhood. Being a woman is not in the first instance an impulse to do something that God strongly forbids. But the church does declare, fairly vigorously, that homosexual desire is a sinful impulse and the conduct arising from it an egregious violation of God’s will. That places the church’s position in a very different head-on collision with the state than does the women’s issue. Even in Canada and Europe traditionalists on women’s roles in the church have never been charged with inciting to violence. But that charge has been made with regard to statements against homosexual practice. How can you claim not to know this? 

In Philadelphia Christians attending a “gay rally” and holding signs calling on people to repent of homosexual practice were arrested and charged with a felony that, had the prosecutor had his way, would have resulted in over 40 years in prison and a $100,000 fine for each. Do you ever recall a traditionalist on women’s issues facing such? I don’t but perhaps you can enlighten me here. 

Are there any accredited institutions of higher learning in this country that have a policy against hiring women as teachers? I’m not aware of any. But there are many such Christian institutions that forbid the hiring of any engaged in immoral sexual activity, including homosexual practice. And you think that such institutions will never have their accreditation jeopardized by the establishment of “sexual orientation” as a specially protected category? That federally funded student loans won’t be at risk for Christian institutions that have faculty teaching that homosexual practice is highly immoral?  

I’ve never heard in this country of instances where traditionalists as regards women’s roles in the church and marriage have been fired from their place of employment for expressing views on the subject. Have you? And yet persons in the United States have been fired for expressing views against homosexual practice. Your comment that analogies from Canada are laughable is, frankly, itself laughable. Of course there are differences between Canada and the U.S. But in the case of Canada we are not talking about something as foreign as old Stalinist Russia or Maoist China. You suggest that the idea of someone here being fired for making allegedly discriminating remarks about homosexual persons outside the workplace could never happen. And yet there is the case of Matt Barber being fired from an insurance agency in America for just such a thing. A number of other cases exist where employees who have protested “coming out” celebrations in the workplace have been fired for their alleged bigotry. 

There certainly have been cases of abuse in Massachusetts—try the massive indoctrination of public school children that reservation about homosexual practice is tantamount to bigotry and racism. Try to get a job as a public school teacher in most Massachusetts school districts if you are known to have expressed opposition to homosexual practice. Catholic adoption agencies in Massachusetts are defunct. Christians refusing to license gay couples for marriage are fired. 

You seem to adopt the erroneous view that Christians are cloistered in protective separatist enclaves, where we will all be safe from laws that codify our views as bigotry. Yet we work in the secular world, usually send our children to secular schools and go to secular colleges and universities (or at least Christian institutions that are accredited). When the law stamps us as virulent bigots, it has the effect of attenuating our freedoms in the secular realm. 

On this issue the ACLU would not come to my defense as regards employment issues. Name me one case where the ACLU has defended the ongoing employment of a Klu Klux Klan member fired from a professional white-collar position. They would protect my right to protest but not my right to express allegedly “discriminating” views as an ongoing employee of a particular company. 

I noticed you said nothing about signing a document paying for my legal defense. How about it? Are you willing to put your money where your mouth is? You are absolutely convinced that none of the things that I predict will happen will, in fact, happen. So what have you got to lose? Are you afraid? Do you have the trust in God to sign such a notarized document? I’m waiting…. 

Blessings to you, 





  © 2007 Robert A. J. Gagnon