Hate? Or Opinion?   Leave a comment

I read an article on the internet recently (I’m always picking up news stories on web sites — I don’t always read the whole thing) about some people protesting against what a leader in the Morman church said about gays.

I did not read the entire article, nor did I go to read his whole speech.  The gist of it was he said homosexuality was a choice and a person could change, and that it was wrong for two people of the the same sex to get married.  His comments were immediately labled “hateful”, and protesters picketed…. the church?  Not sure about that.  Also, some folks in Salt Lake City staged a protest where they wore black and lay down.  The article didn’t explain that and I did not quite see how that related to his comments.

It got me to thinking about the word “hate”, or the label “hate”.  Were his comments showing “hate” towards homosexuals?  Or was he stating an opinion?  Well, in that example, since he was one of the top leaders of the Mormon church and was giving a speech in front of literally hundreds of thousands of Mormons (in person and via broadcast), then I think I can say that his comments were insensitive and inflammatory and went beyond his own personal opinion and into the realm of a directive to the whole Mormon church from a leader.

Now, if I were to turn to my co-worker, with just the two of us with no one else in hearing, and say to her, “I think it is wrong for two people who are the same sex to get married” — I believe that is showing my opinion.  My co-worker does not have to agree with it.  And I don’t think I should be labeled “hateful” for saying it.  Where is hate in that statement?  If you were to say to me “Two people who love each other, no matter what their sex is, should be allowed to get married” then I may or may not agree with you.  But I see no hate there.  I see opinion.  I see feeling and conviction.  Not hate.

When did it become OK to label anything that is not 100% supportive of gays and lesbians and transgenders and all the rest — hate?  I can (and have) work next to muslims and catholics and protestants and jews and christians and agnostics with no trouble.  I can (and have) work and live next to gays and lesbians and transgenders and cross-dressers and not have any conflicts and get along.  So when did it become OK to slap an instant “HATE!” label on someone who expresses an opinion that shows disagreement with or a divergence from the ways gays and lesbians etc. etc. live and/or their culture? 

Can’t we all just disagree thoughtfully, communicate freely, and find the good in all cultures and lifesyles?

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Posted October 15, 2010 by Maureen in Musings

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