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Old July 28th, 2012, 02:36 PM   #1
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More anti-gay Southern Baptist goodness, with a mix of closeted self-hating gay and Chick-fil-A mixed in for good measure:



Quote:
http://www.queerty.c...ogger-20120726/

Anti-Gay Columnist Jonathan Merritt Admits To “Inappropriate” Relationship With Gay Blogger



Jonathan Merritt is a widely published columnist whose work appears in mainstream outlets like USA Today, the Christian Science Monitor and The Atlantic, where he just wrote a piece explaining why we shouldn’t boycott Chick-fil-A.



Merritt is also a deeply conflicted gay man who has aligned himself with the evangelical movement.



Oh, and he just got busted for a dalliance with an ex-evangelical gay blogger.



Joe.My.God’s Joe Jervis just passed along an interview from evangelist Ed Stetzer’s blog, where Merritt came clean:



Quote:

“In 2009, I was contacted by [blogger Azariah Southworth] in response to an article I wrote about just that—that Christians must love people who experience sexual brokenness. We corresponded several times by email and text for a couple of weeks, some of them inappropriate. When I was traveling through a city near him, we met for dinner because we’d corresponded so recently. As we were saying goodbye, we had physical contact that went beyond the bounds of friendship. I was overcome with guilt, knowing I had put myself in an unwise situation. We never saw each other again and we ceased contact after a period of time.

“When I returned home, I saw a Christian counselor to address the events in my life and sort through my childhood and what I believed God wanted for me. I also began to acknowledge to myself that I have sin in my past, sin for which I accept responsibility. Inappropriate texting, inappropriate actions are inappropriate no matter who the other party is. These were my decisions and no one else’s. It’s from my brokenness, that I feel I can now be transparent, honest, and authentic about these accusations. Those close to me know I have actually been planning to share the story of my brokenness for some time. Because it is part of my spiritual journey. And because it underscores the power of the Gospel to transform lives.”


Is Merritt putting himself on the cross because he and Southworth actually touched bodies when they hugged good-bye? Or did their farewell lead to something a little more carnal. For a professional writer, Merritt is being frustratingly vague.



Lest you think Merritt’s confession came from some need to be honest and Jesus-like, it looks like it was prompted by desperation: Southworth outed Merritt on his own blog, though he says it gave him no pleasure to drag the right-wing scribe of the closet:



Quote:

“Exposing this truth of Jonathan’s sexual orientation is not an easy decision for me. I take no pleasure in doing this. As I type this my stomach is turning because I know of the backlash he will receive. I have thought about what all of this will mean for him and for me. I base my reasoning in the importance of living an authentic and honest life.

True change in the ‘culture wars’ may come through genuine fellowship and conversations but if there is not complete honesty and transparency when we come to the table than we are simply building a foundation which will soon deteriorate. We must have radical honesty in the character, intentions and identities of our leaders.”


Admittedly Merritt is more of an ex-gay, or ex-gay-in-training, than a fire-and-brimstone homophobe. In a Christian Science Monitor column from 2011, he criticized religious leaders who fixated on homosexuality far more than other biblical “sins.” The response from the evangelical community was, shall we say, ungodly, and CSM had to pull down the story.



But don’t cry for him, Argentina. He’s turning his lemons into lemonade with a special “announcement” at his pastor father’s Southern Baptist Church in Georgia. (Merritt had already been scheduled for four weeks of sermons there.)



For those of you inclined to feel pity for Merritt, who was clearly born into a repressive religious society, remember that he’s not some hillbilly who’s never been outside his one-horse town: He’s an educated and accomplished writer who uses his gift to tell people how to conduct themselves in the so-called “culture wars.”



This is the man who, last summer, told Huffington Post readers than LGBT-rights advocates need to stop hating foes of marriage equality.



This is a man who claims to be “broken” and yet preaches about God’s supposed plan.



This, dear readers, is a douche.


More coverage:

Outed Christian Author Jonathan Merritt: Yes, I Had Sex With Azariah Southworth But I Swear I Am Totally Not Gay!



Prominent Antigay Evangelical Blogger Outed as Gay
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Old July 28th, 2012, 03:02 PM   #2
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[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eqyUAtzS_6M[/youtube]
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Old July 28th, 2012, 03:31 PM   #3
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I wonder what would happen if the closeted gay folks in these bible-thumping churches all came out of the closet at once, and accepted themselves for who they are?



And would there be any preachers left standing to thump their bibles?
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Old July 28th, 2012, 03:41 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by skrekk View Post
I wonder what would happen if the closeted gay folks in these bible-thumping churches all came out of the closet at once, and accepted themselves for who they are?



And would there be any preachers left standing to thump their bibles?


The choirs would be decimated, for one thing.
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Old July 28th, 2012, 03:53 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by CrazyCrickets View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by skrekk' timestamp='1343514683' post='417337

I wonder what would happen if the closeted gay folks in these bible-thumping churches all came out of the closet at once, and accepted themselves for who they are?



And would there be any preachers left standing to thump their bibles?


The choirs would be decimated, for one thing.


Good point. All the music directors at the church I grew up in have been gay. But it's a gay-friendly Lutheran church and everybody knew they were gay from day one, I think. It was never an issue as far as I know, even back in the 60s and 70s.
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Old July 28th, 2012, 03:55 PM   #6
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I find it difficult to feel sorry for those who vent their self-hate by lashing out at others.



But I still feel a bit sorry for gay men and women like Merritt.



I grew up in the Southern Baptist Church. Most of my family still belong to either the Southern Baptists or some other evangelical, fundamentalist sect. I came out to myself at age 15. To my best friend at age 16. But I am still not completely out to everyone that I know. (40 years later.) It is not so much that I am in the closet; I have been living with my partner for almost 14 years. I suspect that most people know by now. But it is, sort of, a "don't ask; don't tell" situation. If they don't ask, I don't tell.



When the Bible-thumpers that are condemning and shaming you are also the people you love, it is makes being true to oneself very difficult. Some of us do a better job of it than others.



I am happy to say that I have done a better job, evidently, than Merritt. But, I am also sorry that I have not done a better job of it than I have.
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Old July 28th, 2012, 04:02 PM   #7
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It must be hard to have grown up in that environment, presumably without much support from your family. I hope Merritt also learns to accept himself for who he is, and maybe even reconcile that reality with his faith and his family.



Crickets, how do you feel about outing in cases like this? Generally I oppose outing, but with Merritt I support it given that he's been an anti-gay advocate.
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Old July 28th, 2012, 04:05 PM   #8
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This is a stupid, bullshit story talking shit about a man facing internal struggles and gloating over the fact that he's doing so in a very public setting. It's gutter journalism, I mean the lowest level, The Bottom.



This story seethes with hatred. No wonder you posted it, skrekk. You seethe with anger and hatred ... and lately your fascist streak has been showing.



Oh hell, that's right. Merritt wrote a story saying it's OK to eat at that evil chicken sandwich shop. He asked,



Quote:
Do we really want a country where people won't do commerce with those who have beliefs different than their own?


Death row for asking that. And, he had the temerity to say,



Quote:
First of all, Chick-fil-A is not a hate group.


Schedule the execution.... Then the Chick-fil-A-possessed Merritt asked:



Quote:
But my bigger question is this: In a nation that's as divided as ours is, do we really want our commercial lives and our political lives to be so wholly intermeshed? And is this really the kind of culture we want to create?


An almost pitiful moral cripple. Almost. Last meal.



Quote:
I don't care how my dry cleaner votes. I just want to know if he/she can press my Oxfords without burning my sleeves. I find no compelling reason to treat sandwiches differently than shirts.


Checklist: White, male, Christian, may have touched someone inappropriately, or maybe a little more than just "inappropriately," heh-heh, and in a gay way.



Great story material for a gutter journalist. Execute.
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Old July 28th, 2012, 04:13 PM   #9
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Right.....Chick-fil-A is not a hate group, but in that article Merritt fails to note that they've donated $5 million to anti-gay hate groups. The article was a whitewash in defense of a bigot.



Same thing in his article about the level of rhetoric used in marriage equality debates, where Merritt fails to note that only one side is actively trying to deny the civil rights of a minority as well as demonize and spread disinformation about that minority. As one of the comments noted, "this isn't a philosophical discussion over tea and crumpets."



I agree entirely with the comment at the end of the article - Merritt is a douche.
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Old July 28th, 2012, 04:17 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by skrekk View Post
It must be hard to have grown up in that environment, presumably without much support from your family. I hope Merritt also learns to accept himself for who he is, and maybe even reconcile that reality with his faith and his family.



Crickets, how do you feel about outing in cases like this? Generally I oppose outing, but with Merritt I support it given that he's been an anti-gay advocate.


I tend to come down on the side of outing those who are actively anti-gay. I am not familiar with this guy, so I will take your word that he deserved to be outed.



I think, in the long run, those who out self-hating gays are generally doing them a favor. Though that is probably not the intention.



The fact is that those of us who think they are bigoted ass-wipes are not going to feel any worse toward them than we already do. And the anti-gay crowd tends to hoist them up on their shoulders and parade them around as martyrs to the cause.



Sunshine is cleansing for the soul. (Figuratively speaking.)
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