"The real issue is tolerance of what? The fundamental belief that there are no objective truths or standards. From this comes a twisted set of goals. They include the attainment of recognized minority status with all the special protections that status provides."
Fairbanks Daily News-Miner
July 16, 1994
(the paper gave front page and a large amount of coverage to a recent "gay"-lesbian parade, provoking many letters for over a month)
By MICHAEL JOHNSTON
"Fairbanks' gays and lesbians tell of tolerance, anguish and hope." (News-Miner headline, June 26,1994.)
American as apple pie, right? Wrong.
The tolerance they speak of is for that which should not be tolerated, the anguish they point to is misplaced, and the hope they reach for is a lie.
Tolerance can refer to "sympathy or indulgence for beliefs or practices differing from or conflicting with one's own." Sounds like a worthy ideal. However, when you look at the verb "tolerate" you get to the heart of what the homosexual movement is really asking society to do. The meaning is "to suffer to be or to be done without prohibition, hindrance or contradiction."
Whatever the homosexual movement stands for, it is demanding that society embrace it without limit and without disagreement. The slogan of their allies, "straight, but not narrow," is deceptive. The homosexual movement is extremely narrow-minded to the exclusion of anyone who does not embrace homosexuality.
The slogan is an attempt to shift the debate away from what they want you to accept to the more general discussion of tolerance.
The real issue is tolerance of what? The fundamental belief that there are no objective truths or standards. From this comes a twisted set of goals. They include the attainment of recognized minority status with all the special protections that status provides.
Other goals are seldom talked about but are just as critical to their application of "tolerance." Openly practicing homosexuals in the military service, sanction of homosexual marriage with all the benefits, repeal of laws that restrict the number of persons entering into a marriage unit, joint adoption of children by homosexual couples, required inclusion of homosexual curricula taught by homosexual teachers in public schools and repeal of laws governing the age of sexual consent are just a few. Next time you hear the word "tolerance, " remember what it is that society is being asked to tolerate. It is the intolerable.
With empathy I read the stories of the Fairbanks men and women, each believing their identity to be inextricably linked with homosexuality. The pain of a 20-year marriage gone bad or a young woman caught between the traditional morals of her family and her own strong desires is real. Poignant examples of human anguish.
However, the implication that their anguish justifies their demand that society tolerate homosexuality is illogical. How they came to the place of believing their own behavior to be good and right is not the relevant issue, the behavior is. Many human beings have tragically come to accept behavior that has detrimental consequences for themselves and society. Many stories have been told of the anguished backgrounds of many a drunk. That doesn't mean society should tolerate drunkenness.
The tragedy of the homosexual movement and the "gay pride" march is that it offers false hope to young people and adults facing their own difficult circumstances. The Fairbanks stories caused me to reflect on my own experience as a practicing homosexual. I remember feeling isolated and different, of marching with my own "gay pride" tanktop (pink) down the streets of Washington, D.C. There was a feeling of camaraderie and purpose. But the real test of an object of hope is what it provides when the parade is over. The parade ended for me in 1986 when I tested positive for HIV. Sometimes it takes a good kick in the teeth to see things for what they really are. What I saw was a lie.
Homosexuality promised me acceptance; it increased my loneliness.
It promised me freedom; it gave me emotional and sexual bondage.
There is a proverb that says,. "There is a way that seems right to a man but in the end leads to death." Another says, "Even in laughter the heart may ache, and joy may end in grief." My experience is that behind the smiling faces of thousands of men and women looking to "gay pride" for hope are broken hearts. What they need is not affirmation of their behavior or support of their goals; they need Christ.
A Polynesian islander converted to Christ expressed it this way:
"I have witnessed first hand the liberty that comes with the Gospel of Christ. It is no hate, it is no intolerance, it is no bigotry that tells a man and a woman how to be free from the horrors of death, defilement and destruction. It is no love it is no intolerance, it is no freedom that tells men to do as they wish to the detriment of all that is sacred sure and secure."
Michael Johnston, 34, lives in Anchorage. He is the president of Kerusso Ministries and chairman of Alaskans Opposed to Pro-homosexual Policies, a political action committe. His column was submitted to the News-Miner at the request of Fairbanks residents .