This isn't the usual post. I usually post about guns, cooking and various things that either thrill or peeve me - with the exception of the last, those are fun to write about and that last exception is good for me as it lets me vent, lowering my blood pressure.
This one? This is more a post about using small words for the hard of thinking.
When did you sit down and decide to be heterosexual? MMmmm...you can't remember?
If you can, you're one of those rare "bi" critters and can take this entire post and file it under "mmm, never mind."
But for most folks, gay or straight, there is about as much choice in the matter as there is about how tall we are, our natural eye or hair color, or whether we need glasses. It's neither good nor bad, it's simply the hand that we're dealt. For our merely human purposes, it really doesn't matter whether you subscribe to the notion of an uncaring universe filled with randomness or a more personal divine influence on such matters - in either case, or the many possibilities between - you get the hand you're dealt, and that is the hand you get to play as your life unfolds.
You have choices in how you're going to respond to this hand you've been dealt. You can go pout in the corner, jump up and down and cry about how unfair it all is, try and pretend it just isn't so (though this has a number of particularly ugly complications), do the last with bells on and try and *prove* it just isn't so (which usually involves doing things that allegedly "can't be done by gay folks", whether trying to become a SEAL or taking up gay-bashing as a hobby - or you can take a deep breath, and with greater or lesser drama, simply accept that you're a member of the LGBT community and get on with life.
In short, it's not a choice. It's not a lifestyle. A lifestyle is something like deciding you're going to join the Hells Angels, Bandidos, Society of Creative Anachronism or a Civil War Re-enactors group. You might take up Buddhism or Catholicism, or even become a Pastafarian. All of those are, to a greater or lesser extent, lifestyles.
Being a blonde or a brunette isn't a lifestyle. Neither is being short or tall, nor white/black/asian/etc. You might get some cultural baggage for falling into one of those groups, but that doesn't make any of them lifestyles. Same thing is true of being gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgendered.
What makes a lifestyle a "lifestyle" is that at some point you had a choice in the matter. LGBT folk have no more choice in the matter than hetero folks, or any of these other groups I mention. You either are or you aren't, and all you get is to decide how to react to whatever you are.
If we postulate God doesn't have a particularly sadistic and slapstick sense of humor, we're left with the notion that at least LGBT folks (and the list can get longer awfully quick) are some kind of horrible divine error OR that LGBT folks are here for some divine purpose beyond our comprehension.
At least in the faith I grew up in, fundamental precepts include that God doesn't make mistakes (kind of shooting down an entire range of logical possibility), that God is omnipotent (ruling out accident) and loving (ruling out "sadistic bastard with a lowbrow sense of humor"). This leaves us with God putting LGBT folks here for an as yet unknown divine reason.
With this in mind, we are not either doomed or blessed to any greater extent than the average hetero kid with the same general range of sins, foibles and virtues.
Like a lot of other groups with the misfortune of being different (i.e., "goat du jour") the LGBT community has gotten to put up with generous heaping helpings of bonus bulls**t over the years. Bashings, discriminatory laws, social opprobrium (look it up!), and generally an extra rough road.
Difference makes demonization (the politicians friend "THEY ARE DIFFERENT! AND SCARY! YOU NEED TO GIVE US POWER/MONEY/ADORATION TO PROTECT YOU FROM THEM! ESPECIALLY YOUR CHILDREN & WIMMINS!") a fair amount easier. It's HARDER to be scared of Joe Dungaree next door that looks just like you, believes the same thing, as far as you can tell does the same variety of things with his life, etc.
So those with detectable differences are easy targets for these twits to use in their quest for power - the only thing that changes is who gets to be the goat on a particular day.
And this is where Robertson's comments got folks in the LGBT community so riled up - the familiarity of the tone. An awful lot of the crud we've put up with over the years can be tracked right back to some holy type preaching to a crowd of knuckle-draggers a theme of "hate the sin, love the sinner" - knuckle-draggers that most frequently are too dim to understand the "love the sinner" bit and rush out to either "punish" the sinner (see assault/rape/murder or (possibly even more vile) to pummel the sinner into "virtue" for the "sinners own good."
I suspect, by now, all but the hardest of thinking might - just maybe - pick up now on why many in the LGBT community got a tad fired up.
I stick with my original theme ("Spankings for All!") in this matter, but will admit that this episode has both left me a bit more concerned about how much progress towards simple safety we've made based on some of the comments out there, and glad that I can carry tools to either ward off such nimrods or at least ensure that I have a decent sized honor guard.