Fernando Botero's "Sunday at Castelgandolfo," 2009
Making it all about the gay, or ridiculously, about bullying, diminishes the victims, it distracts from the fact ISIS terror is here, in the U.S.
I've been reading some of the gay-Catholic blogs and articles online, as well as some conservative criticism of bishop(s) and priest(s) who are suggesting Catholic teaching is responsible for the homophobia which motivated the attack. I don't care what you say - these people are callously using the attack to further an ideological agenda. I think I mentioned that yesterday when I posted the following from First Things:
And so, here's the rub: The Catholic Church and the LGBT Community have divergent understandings of human nature, personal identity, the proper use of bodies, and the requirements for happiness. As Fr. Martin rightly points out, Catholics treat the LGBT Community as “other”—not because the Church wishes to exclude members of the LGBT Community from the mercy of Christ, induction into the Church, or eventual participation in the Sacraments (on the contrary, this is one of our great hopes), but because the beliefs, practices, politics, and morals proposed by the LGBT Community as an ideological bloc are fundamentally inimical to the primary end of man. - Finish reading here.The wedge is so deep - it almost seems insurmountable.
The terror attack exposed a great divide between secular and religious factions in our country and in the West. Even Prince William, after signing a book of condolences at the embassy in London, spoke about it as an attack on LGBTQ and called for an end to bullying. Emotionally moving, to be sure - but it's bigger than that. Going forward, I expect people will understand that - and unfortunately the Orlando terror will simply be an example of homophobia and not a 'terror strike'.
So I'll let it go - I'll let it be that - all about the gays.
That said, there are two things I want to clarify regarding what I've written since the attack in Orlando.
Help, O Lord for good men have vanished ... falsehoods they speak one to another.
First, I don't know Bishop Lynch, nor his background, nor do I know of any association he may have to the LGBTQ 'community' - other than hearsay. I don't care - I can disagree with what he and Fr. Martin think the Orlando shooting is about - but I'm not digging up dirt or making accusations against them to defend my POV. As I have stated in the past - I have never had a problem with Catholic teaching nor how it is worded in official documents and the Catechism of the Catholic Church. Apparently some bishops and priests do, and it is well known gay-Catholic groups do as well. In fact, they make it very clear they want the language and doctrine to change.
I'm against it.
Dens of iniquity?
Secondly, I spoke as if a gay bar is a morally neutral place to hang out at. That wasn't my point. I wanted to emphasize the humanity, the dignity of the individuals who were killed without making the event into a moral judgement on lifestyle and all of that stuff some religious people decided was more important than the lives of the so-called 'perverts'. It demonized, marginalized, and dehumanized the victims and their dignity as children of God.
As I wrote earlier: A gay bar or nightclub like this is not a sex club or bath house, it is a nightclub, a safe haven for gay people to go and dance and socialize without being afraid some gay-basher is going to beat them up because they dance with each other or wear make-up. Not everyone who goes to clubs like this are gay or looking for sex. Not every one goes out on Saturday night to drink and get drunk or try to pick up someone for sex, or heads to the bathroom looking for a quick bj. A 'mega' club like this attracts all sorts of men and women who are simply out to have fun and enjoy themselves.
Is it a place of sin? Is it a near occasion of sin? I'm not a moral theologian, but I would say yes to both of those questions. Were those at the club in a state of mortal sin? Only God knows that. Could people go to a club like that in good conscience? That's between them and their confessor/spiritual director. It's been a couple of decades since I was in a bar - but I would not go to one now. I'm not interested. When I did go to bars, was it a 'near occasion of sin' - did I experience temptation? Sometimes.
However, would going to a coffee-shop at which gay people hung out pose the same dangers? I doubt it. How about a corner bar? Maybe not. How about a gym or fitness club? See how difficult this becomes? For some people, just going to the beach is a problem.
That said, a gay club pretty much stands as an endorsement of LGBTQ life, and therefore, as Milco wrote of the LGBTQ 'community' as a whole:
They represent a highly developed political and anthropological ideology, which makes hard claims about human nature and desire, morality, the structure of the family, and the proper use of bodies. - First ThingsThat post got under gay-Catholic's skin - Melinda Selmys and many others didn't like Milco's post.
We become so accustomed to the acceptance of gay persons, we forget that elements which comprise the 'lifestyle' are indeed sinful - even though secular and civil society approves and condones them.
The events in Orlando has opened up and exposed a serious moral divide. As I said before, one could easily claim the attack was anti-Latino bigotry - which is just as ludicrous as the claim it was a homophobic hate crime. The nightclub was a soft target for ISIS terror. The attack is being used by all sorts of people now to further their agenda.
"Humans raise a barrier between themselves and God's Kingdom in two ways - first by the kind of life they choose to lead, and secondly by their demand for certain social conditions or their toleration of others." - Fr. Alfred Delp, S.J.