9 of the Biggest Lies Everyday Feminism Tells About Christianity's Views on Sex and Marriage

Today I'd like to analyze some of the arguments made in this woefully sad article published on the popular web site Everyday Feminism. I see my friends and associates commenting on these articles all the time on Facebook, because I have lots of friends who are fans of this online magazine. The article I'm writing about is titled "9 of the Biggest Lies Christianity Tells Us About Sex and Marriage" and it is written by one Eliel Cruz. 

An insanely ambitious title if there ever was one, don't you think? Let's just start at the beginning. The article opens with:

"For centuries, the Christian church has had what amounts to a monopoly on Western conversations about sex and marriage. And during this time, it has given a lot of bad advice in its tenure."

Okay, let's overlook the contorted and peculiarly-worded mixed metaphor of the "Christian church" having a professor-like "tenure" but also a corporate "monopoly" and get right into the extremely vague assumptions made in that opening sentence.

What, exactly, is the "Christian church"? Catholicism? Protestantism? Coptic Christians? Greek-Orthodox? Jehovah's Witnesses? Mormons? Pentecostals? Evangelicals? Lutherans? Anglicans? Baptists? I mean, if you're referring to ALL Christian denominations over a period of time "centuries" long, that's a pretty huge thing to tackle. You're talking about billions of people who lived and died holding these beliefs. That's not even an institution, really. It's a deeply-rooted philosophy that informs all parts of modern culture. How can you even assume that every single Christian for the past few centuries has believed basically the same thing on any subject? I would argue that there are very, very few things all these Christians have agreed on. Even something as simple as "Jesus is the son of God" can get extremely tricky when you get into definitions of the words "son" and "God." some denominations believe one way, others another way. This is why so many denominations exist.

And isn't this an extremely, blindingly narrow view of Christianity, too? Christianity has been informed and influenced by many, many traditions. I mean just look at how every single atheist with an internet connection loves to point out how Christmas trees are really rooted in paganism somehow. Hellenistic thought, paganism, Judaism, etc. all informed and shaped many, many Christian traditions. In fact one could argue that this is Christianity's strength; its ability to adapt to a variety of cultural and national traditions. Traditional beliefs from all nationalities and cultures have all mixed into different versions of Christianity, from Gnosticism to mysticism. Is this author implying that African culture did nothing to shape American southern forms of Christianity? Or that Italian culture did nothing to shape American Catholicism? All of these traditions and cultures have their own views on sex and sexuality, but they may agree in some places. If there was ever a "monopoly" on the conversation, it was not because the "Christian church" was dominating human thought on sexual morality; it was because most religions agree on some things and take human sexuality very seriously.

Traditional forms of Judaism, Hinduism, Buddhism, Sikhism, Zoroastrianism, American Indian religious traditions, Taoism, Islam, etc. all place prohibitions on sexual activity in some form or another. Placing limits on human behavior in the name of morality is the essence of religion, bro.

I can't speak for all of Christianity, but I am going to make some assumptions about what Christians generally believe throughout this post. I feel I am qualified to do this, having grown up Mormon and having studied Christianity throughout college and graduate school. I am going to give Christians the benefit of the doubt, since Christianity has the most followers of any religion on earth and it strikes me as immature to assume they are stupid for their beliefs.

Okay, back to the article. At this rate we'll never finish, huh? But the lack of self-awareness in just those opening lines is really quite astounding.

"While some religious institutions have used their platforms to preach tolerance and respect, all too often their more conservative counterparts have ended up perpetuating patriarchy, rape culture, and heteronormativity."

Suddenly the author shifts from talking about the "Christian church" to just "religious institutions" in general. Their "conservative" counterparts perpetuate "heteronormativity" along with "rape culture," which is surprising because I bet most religious institutions claim to be extremely against rape. What sources do you have, Eliel Cruz, to back up the assertion that religious institutions perpetuate rape culture? Well, he links us to a YouTube video of a talking head explaining the history of rape culture, uploaded by Everyday Feminism. So as proof of this statement, he cites the very publication he is writing for. Okay. That's kind of like me saying that Everyday Feminism has long promoted the molestation of infants in the name of "childhood sexual education." As proof of this, please see my blog post where I first said that!

I guess it's a given that if you are a fan of Everyday Feminism heteronormativity is assumed to be morally wrong, although the reason why "religious institutions" promote heterosexuality is simply because they believe homosexual activity to be morally wrong. So it makes sense that they would promote heteronormative values. It's like when Christians and Jews promote "Judeo-Christian values." Assuming that another party is morally wrong simply because they disagree with you is the exact thing that Everyday Feminists purport to dislike about the "Christian church."

Also, I'd like to point out that both "conservative" and "liberal" denominations of religious institutions often agree that sex outside of marriage is sinful, and that homosexual activity is also sinful. Politically liberal does not automatically mean "moral relativism." There are many Democratic Christians out there who are all about being economically liberal while remaining firm in their beliefs that abortion is wrong and that traditional marriage ought to be preserved. Stop flattening religious believers. Stop stereotyping religious people. We are as complex as a group as anyone else. I'm Mormon and in just this "denomination" of Christianity alone you will find followers of every possible political persuasion. Saying that all Mormons are basically alike is as ludicrous as saying all Christians or all religious are basically alike. It's like saying all gay people like Barbara Streisand and interior decorating. It's an outdated and exhausted stereotype.

"A lot of religious institutions, especially conservative iterations, forgo sexual education in favor of blanket statements like “Sex is impure – don’t have it until marriage.” "

Yeah? "A lot" of religious institutions teach that "Sex is impure"? By all means, tell me more. Give me some examples. That's a pretty huge "blanket statement" to make about religious institutions, isn't it? To teach that having sex is "impure"? I would agree that many, if not most religious institutions teach that sex should wait until marriage--but they might argue that this is for the very reason that sex is the opposite of impure; sex is viewed as sacred.

Also, I'd love to know more about how religious institutions (especially conservative ones!) "forgo sexual education." Is the author stating that churches don't educate their followers on sex? Are we talking the biology of human sexual activity, as in penises and vaginas? Because I believe most churches adamantly encourage parents to educate their children on such issues. If churches don't talk about the wonders of erections and vaginal lubrication over the pulpit, this may be because the role of the church isn't to be a biology classroom. Many churches actually DO educate followers on the moral meaning, effect, and spiritual and psychological ramifications of sexual activity. In fact, in my opinion religious institutions do a far better job of covering the psycho-social aspects of sex than sex education programs, or at least the sex ed. programs I am familiar with. Sex, to the religious, is far more than body parts rubbing against other body parts. Pretending that churches teach nothing about sex is dishonest.

"In the United States, these types of dogmatic and outdated beliefs may be taking their toll on the faithful. According to the Pew Research Forum, more US Americans than ever before claim they don’t consider themselves affiliated with any one religion, including nearly one-quarter of millennials. And it’s not just in the US."

The author states that such beliefs are "dogmatic" and "outdated." What beliefs is he even referring to? The belief that "sex should wait until marriage"? Or the belief that "sex is impure"? These are two beliefs that the author himself mentioned with no citation whatsoever. Ignoring the nonsensical claim that religious people believe sex itself is somehow "impure," what is "dogmatic" and "outdated" in the belief that people ought to wait until marriage to have sex? I thought the point of Everyday Feminism was to encourage sexual autonomy; if an individual man or woman wishes to wait until marriage to have sex, why should they be made to feel as if their choice is somehow wrong? Isn't that a form of shaming? Using the words "outdated" and "dogmatic" certainly do not conjure up positive images, at least in my mind.

"If religious institutions truly want to stop this trend, they must change the perception that they are stuck in a rut culturally. One way to do this would be by contributing healthy ideas about sex and marriage."

The author suggests here that to reverse the trend of people becoming religiously unaffiliated "with any one religion," then religion ought to change the very morality it currently espouses in favor of a new morality. I mean, this is equivalent to saying if Democrats want to win over more Republicans to their side, they need to espouse Republican values and platforms. Sure, that might work, but wouldn't it sort of make the Democrat party irrelevant?

Don't you love that little jab at the end there, too? The author encourages religious institutions to "contribut[e] healthy ideas about sex and marriage," as if all religious ideas concerning sex and marriage are somehow "unhealthy." This is offensive for more than one reason. First, it assumes that all religions basically have the same notions on sex and sexuality, which they definitely don't. Secondly, it encourages the view that if you disagree with the LGBT view of human sexuality, you are wrong. No room for debate of any kind whatsoever. It's the same "dogmatic" view of ideas the author would surely criticize any fundamentalist for.

"But they have to stop telling lies first.

"Here are a few ways Christian leaders could stop being part of the problem when it comes to sexual stigmatization and shaming, instead helping their audience become more enlightened and empowered when it comes to sexuality."

The author suddenly shifts gears here back to criticizing Christianity exclusively, as opposed to all religious institutions everywhere. Is the author suggesting that Christians are the only religious group responsible for"sexual stigmatization" and "shaming"? (Because if so, I have some Muslim countries I'd like the author to meet.)

I also take issue at the author's implication that Christians are less "enlightened" and "empowered" because of their religious beliefs. Again, another example of Everyday Feminism "white knighting" us poor, unenlightened and oppressed Christians. Keep in mind that a man wrote this article. Also keep in mind that women make up at least half of all of Christendom, the world's biggest religion. Also keep in mind that women tend to be more religiously active than men in general (see the very Pew poll the author himself cited above). So let's all remember that every time this guy talks down to Christians, he is "mansplaining" to millions upon millions of women. 

But enough of that. Let's get into the lies Christianity spreads.

"1. Virginity Is a Biological Event

"Once you’ve had sex, you’re no longer a virgin – at least, that’s what some in the church would like you to believe."

Okay, so the "lie" being perpetuated by all of Christianity is that virginity is a "biological event" or that it is somehow intrinsically linked to whether or not one has engaged in a sexual act. As proof that all Christians believe this, the author links to an article posted on a website for a Middle Eastern Christian denomination that I have never even actually heard of. (I dare anyone to visit http://www.aramnaharaim.org/ and tell me the views posted there probably represent most Christians living in the United States.)

You know, the Christians might not be so much to blame for the "myth" of virginity than language itself. The Oxford English Dictionary defines "virgin" as 1. an "Unmarried or chaste maid or woman." Right there, the understanding is that if a woman is not "chaste" she cannot be a virgin. It doesn't even say what kind of sex she has to be engaging in. Anything unchaste is unvirginal, according to the OED. Here's the second definition in the OED: "A woman (esp. a young woman) who is, or remains, in a state of inviolate chastity; an absolute pure maiden or maid." Again, the dictionary itself reiterates that the word "virgin" is a biological event.

I'm not saying the dictionary is the be-all, end-all authority--I only invoke it to illustrate that in English the concept of virginity exists outside the bounds of Christianity. (Don't worry, Everyday Feminism has more than one article decrying the tyranny of dictionaries. I'm not joking.)

Whether or not you agree with the "social construct" of virginity is one thing, but don't try to make it seem like only Christians have pushed the idea of virginity around for the past two millennia. The concept of virginity is older and runs deeper than Christian influence. Most languages have ancient words for "virgin." It's not an esoteric idea.

"Indeed, for many denominations, there is a clear line between pre- and post-penetration that determines your virginity.

"But what kind of sex exactly are we talking about? Does oral sex count? How about anal sex? Or is it just vaginal intercourse with cisgender heterosexual penises and vaginas?

"In fact, the idea that virginity is a biological event is inherently flawed, a social construct that works to uphold purity culture."

Well yeah, for many denominations there is a clear line between engaging in a sexual act and NOT engaging in a sexual act! I thought this would be something Christians and Everyday Feminists could happily agree with! Is the author saying that sometimes there are no clear distinctions between "pre- and post-penetration"? Sounds like the epitome of rape culture thinking to me.

If the author wants to know what kind of sex a demonination counts as "sex," I bet you could find out by simply asking an authority of that denomination. "Hello pastor, could you tell me whether your church considers oral sex outside of marriage as unchaste behavior?" Heck, you might even find some Christians who forbid oral and anal sex even within the bonds of matrimony! It's weird how people believe different things!

Then with a wave of the hand the author dismisses the very notion that sexual activity can determine virginity. It's an "inherently flawed" idea. Why? I'm not sure, because the author does not deign to tell. We must simply accept his word on absolute perfect faith, because he wrote it. Getting a weird "cult" like vibe from that, but okay. Moving on.

"2. Marriage Automatically Makes Sex Amazing for Everyone

"Sex can be awesome after marriage.

"It can also be pretty bad.

"Yes, in fact, your wedding night may be an awkward, fumbling sexual experience – and that’s okay.

"Good sex requires intimacy, trust, transparency, and mutual satisfaction. These things can be achieved outside of a marriage, but can also be amplified by a marriage.

"Despite what some Christians say, believing in the Bible won’t make your sex life amazing.

"Sex doesn’t magically become the bee’s knees because you signed a marriage certificate and received a priest’s blessing."

So the lie here that Christians perpetuate is that marriage "automatically makes sex amazing for everyone"? I've never heard any Christian say this, ever. Would it be so hard to quote actual things that Christians say to use against them? I mean there are plenty of stupid things said by Christians out there! Why fabricate the most extreme statements like this that no married, sexually active Christian would even take seriously?

The link the author provides is a long article on having a healthy sex life as a Christian. I didn't read the whole thing, so I can't say for sure, but from what I read it appeared to take a very sex-positive view of sex. It does mention the Bible, but nowhere did it say belief in the Bible would "magically" make for an amazing sex life. Way to set up an argument that nobody ever made, only to knock it down without even explaining why. It's just dishonest and reductive on the part of the author, who apparently can't seem to make his argument without resorting to lying. It also invokes the word "magically" which respected historian Robert Orsi has written about extensively. Orsi argues that, in a nutshell, accusing a religious group of belief in "magic" has a long tradition in hatespeech, bigotry, and the persecution of minorities. So thanks for that, Everyday Feminism.

One fascinating detail of this section is that the author actually admits that marriage can actually "amplify" all of the things required for "good sex." Isn't this something Christians would teach? Is the author agreeing with Christians here, or what?

"3. Sex Is Only for Heterosexual Cisgender People

"We’ve heard it all before: “If a man lies with another man as he lies with a woman, he is an abomination.”

"Many churches still hold onto theology that condemns same-sex intimacy and polices queer individuals who don’t appease the church’s sexual ethical standards."

While this is obviously true, what is the difference between "policing" sexuality and "policing" any other kind of human behavior? And is "policing" the same as simply believing or thinking something is morally wrong? Police officers are different from other individuals because they have the authority to enforce the law (put people in jail, etc.). How do churches enforce morality, exactly? I would guess most Christian churches leave judgment to God--right? Or is the author accusing Christians of believing in a God that "polices" morality?

Churches condemn many forms of human behavior. In general I believe most religions frown upon stealing, acts of violence, unkindness, hurting the weak and the defenseless, fraudulent behavior, being a traitor to friends, loved ones, country, etc. The ten commandments forbid "covetousness" towards other people's property or other people's spouses. Jesus said that even thinking lustful thoughts or calling someone names is sinful behavior. According to this author, that is "policing," though. And policing, I assume, is bad. But why?

"This shame-filled narrative holds that sex is only for straight cisgender people, essentially erasing LGBTQIA+ people from the narrative altogether."

So it's bad for churches to teach a theology that condemns "same-sex intimacy" because it is promoting a "shame-filled narrative"? Shame is wrong? Promoting shame is wrong? Why? Is there a way to teach the difference between moral right and wrong without the concept of shame? Should individuals feel bad for anything they do, ever? Or is it just shame related to sex that is wrong?

I guess the other thing wrong with this "narrative" is that it holds that "sex is only for straight cisgender people." I feel that most Christians would say this is technically inaccurate. "Sex is only for married couples" would be a much more accurate statement. Marriage is open to anyone on the sexual spectrum, LGBTQIA+, since sexual orientation has nothing to do with whether or not one has been traditionally allowed to get married. You're allowed to marry if you meet the requirements of the institution: one man and one woman. Do Christians teach that God doesn't care about your individual sexual desires? On the contrary, as pointed out above God apparently cares a lot. But according to Christianity the only sexual act that is approved of is between two people who are legally and lawfully wed.

"Even transgender people are unable to be intimate by some churches’ standards.

"A recent publication by a research institute for the Seventh-Day Adventist Church called trans identities a “sophisticated form of homosexuality.”"

First off I really dislike how the word "intimate" can only ever mean "sexually intimate" in the Everyday Feminist world. There are many other forms of intimacy. And no church has ever forcefully stopped any transgender person from engaging in sexual behavior with anyone. Everyone is free to do what they want. Saying they are "unable" to be "intimate" is a lie. You just don't like that the church says it's morally wrong, but the church has the right to say and believe that. Everyone has the right to do that. This is America, man.

I actually don't understand what the point of that last line about transgenders and homosexuality is. Is this supposed to be shocking to us? I thought Everyday Feminism did not consider homosexuality sinful. What would it matter if a church equated transgenderism with homosexuality, then? Is the author just upset that a Christian church thinks transgenderism is sinful, then? It might be informative to figure out just why any given church might find the transitioning of one gender into another as morally problematic. Unfortunately, the author doesn't bother and moves on.

"4. If You’re Not Married By a Certain Age, You’re Screwed

"The pressure to find a spouse in your early 20s is intense in some corners of the Christian world, to the extent that some young adults feel doomed if they don’t marry by a certain age.

"In 2009, Christianity Today ran a piece by Mark Regnerus outlining a case for early marriage: “Amid our purity pledges and attempts to make chastity hip, we forgot to teach young Christians how to tie the knot. More recently, Karen Swallow Prior in the Atlantic extolled the values of marrying young.

"These arguments focus on fertility (“Get ‘em while they’re young!”) and idolize a biblical definition of heterosexual marriage and fidelity.

"But there is no set age that someone must marry by. You can be 26, single and ready to mingle, and it’ll all be okay."

Again, these are statements that I'm pretty sure most Christians would happily agree with. The pressure to find a spouse in your early 20s is "intense" because Christians want to marry other Christians and if they don't find one in time the pool diminishes. This is just math, dude. It's not some nefarious plot from religious leaders concocted in order to hurt people. Even if it were true that Christian leaders pressured youth to marry, what is wrong with that? We pressure people to do things all the time. We pressure them to not cheat on their spouses, to take the feelings of other into consideration. Why not pressure them to get married?

As for "idoliz[ing] a biblical definition" of "heterosexual marriage"--well, obviously. Why would Christians idolize a Quranic definition of marriage? Or the LGBTQIA+ definition of marriage? And I like that the author said the "biblical definition of heterosexual marriage" as if there was some other kind of marriage described in the Bible. What are the Bible's teachings on homosexual marriage, for instance? Just curious. Not to even mention "biblical ... heterosexual ... fidelity." So fidelity itself is a biblical concept? I'm glad you're admitting this, Everyday Feminism. Are you admitting that monogamy is somehow rooted in religious tradition? That has some pretty serious implications!

"5. Having Sex Before Marriage Makes You Damaged Goods

"No one is damaged goods. No matter how much sex you’ve had, you are not damaged goods. This lie is especially dangerous for survivors of sexual abuse.

“There’s this deep fear within the purity movement that if you ‘give yourself away’ or ‘let someone else in,’ you’ll be damaged for your future marriage,” Anderson said.

“But that’s not how life works. Our responses to events, both positive and negative, shape who we are as people. To say that any sexual activity makes you damaged is to say that your worth exists somewhere in your nether regions, which is patently false.”

This is a fascinating section. It really is. Because it acknowledges that human worth does not lie in the "nether regions" of a human being. Your sexuality, it seems to say, does not define who you are. I mean this is what Christianity purports to teach, isn't it? It doesn't matter if you like men or women; what matters are your thoughts and actions. "The worth of the soul is great," as Christ said. The author tends to agree, although where does his belief stem from? Is he religious? Can't tell.

I do know that Christianity teaches of something known as "forgiveness." This concept teaches that since Christ paid the penalty for all human sin, every individual can be forgiven by God for any of his or her mistakes. Churches teach different methods for arriving at this state of redemption, but the overall idea is the same. It's basically what the author is describing. I guess he doesn't understand Christianity very well. Or he does and is being purposefully misleading for some reason.

"6. Women Must Fulfill Men’s Needs

"There’s a double standard in how the church talks about sexual relationships. It’s one that usually favors the men and centers their needs over their female partners.

"The church espouses that women must be ready to fulfill their man’s needs at all times. But this argument does little to encourage men to fulfill their partner’s needs, sexual or not.

"Christian author and on-again, off-again megachurch pastor Mark Driscoll goes as far to say that women who refuse sex (whether for sexual abuse trauma, pain, or even anxiety) are selfish and go against God. No offense to Driscoll, but it’s time to set the record straight on this issue.

Attention, all God-fearing men: Women are not your personal sex toys."

Astounding. So the author is actually claiming that Christianity generally teaches that "women must be ready to fulfill their man's [sexual] needs at all times"? This is basically saying that Christians expect some kind of sexual slavery from women. This is insane! To think that millions upon millions (actually, BILLIONS) of women subject themselves to this inhumane treatment, too!

I was very curious to find where Mark Driscoll says that women who refuse sex due to trauma and pain "go against God" so I clicked on the author's source link. Big surprise! He links to a blog post by a third party commenting on Mark Driscoll's book, not the words of Mark Driscoll himself. The blogger even admits that "The Driscolls condemn marital rape strongly (pg. 202), state that any intercourse forced on someone without consent is rape (pg. 121), and tell husbands that they should never coerce their wives into having sex (pg. 163)."

And yet the author feels that Driscoll's teaching that wives ought to make sex a fundamental part of a marital relationship is somehow transforming them into "personal sex toys." How is Driscoll's argument any different from LGBTQIA+ columnist Dan Savage's advice that happy relationships are built on all parties willing to be "good, giving, and game" in regards to anything sexual? (Google Dan Savage + GGG to read what I'm referring to). I'm talking specifically to the requirement that individuals should act "giving" in terms of sex. Does that mean sometimes having sex when you don't feel like it? Does it mean doing sexual things that may please your partner more than you? And what about being "game"? Does that mean engaging in sexual acts that may appear weird or uncomfortable to you, but that you'd be down to try anyway? Hey Dan Savage, human beings are not each other's personal sex toys!

But of course Savage is not advocating rape scenarios. He is just pointing out a seemingly universal truth that Christians have also discovered. Sex is better when both parties are happy to please their partners. And yet when Savage says it he is lauded as a clear-thinking sexual pioneer. When some Christian pastor suggests it he's deemed a rape advocate. I'd love to see more proof on how Christianity teaches that men like me ought to treat their wives like masturbatory aides.

"7. Men Marry for Sex, Women Marry for Love

"It’s common for some conservative Christian authors to describe men as “wild,” relinquishing any responsibility for a man’s “wandering eyes.” Yes, some even go as far to say “dateable girls shut up.

"This gender stereotypical nonsense is nonsense. People marry for all types of reasons. Sex and love aren’t even the only reasons some people get married. But there isn’t a reason that’s specific to any gender."

Again, this is something I've never heard any Christian say, ever. If anything, I've heard more Christians say men AND women marry for sex. At least in the Mormon world, this is a commonly held belief. But this goes hand in hand with the belief that people typically marry because they are in love, too. This "lie" is so stupid I can't even think of how to address it.

"8. Marriage Is ‘Forever’

"Although not always explicitly, women have been encouraged to forgive and even stay with unfaithful or abusive husbands.

"Women have similarly been encouraged to stay with their partners because, despite consistently high rates in North America and parts of Europe, divorce is still considered immoral in the eyes of some conservative Christian denominations.

"Outdated stigmas about virginity can make divorce especially hard for women, however."

What's the "lie" here? That the concept of marriage is "forever"? Christianity is lying by defining marriage as a life-long (and in some denominations eternal) vow? This makes no sense. A church can define the terms of marriage however it wants, right? I thought that was the whole point of the LGBTQIA+ debate over redefining marriage--that marriage is something that can be redefined! Are Christians not allowed to define marriage as a life-long commitment? That's "lying"? And yet saying that no-fault divorce and serial monogamy in parents is just as emotionally and psychologically healthy for children as any other lifestyle choice--that's not considered a lie? That's considered the hard truth? This all strikes me as more than a fight over who is allowed to claim to the truth; it's a fight over the nature of truth itself. This author uses the term "lie" over and over, but he's not suggesting that these statement are not true because there is some kind of universal truth. He's upset that some people are claiming to hold the truth when he clearly believes there is no such thing as universal truth. All is relative. All is constantly shifting sand. There is no such thing as a stable center. THAT is what the argument is really about, isn't it? 

Again the author uses the term "outdated" to refute any arguments surrounding divorce. Again, the author states that "conservative" Christians find divorce "immoral." I would say plenty of liberal Christians also find "no-fault" divorce to be immoral. What I don't get is why the author feels he has the right to dictate what religions can say are morally right or wrong. If one argues for moral relativism, then of course he has just as much right to say what's wrong or right as anyone else...but then so do Christians. So there's no argument here. He's the epitome of the LGBTQIA+ "anti-argument." He uses the scaffolding of reason to form what has the outward appearance of an argument without ever forming one.

"9. Masturbation Is a Sin – And Possibly Gay

"Conservative Christianity’s promotion of chastity dovetails with a mistrust of masturbation, for both men and women. Some Christians even call masturbation an act of homosexuality.

“Masturbation can be a form of homosexuality because it is a sexual act that does not involve a woman,” Driscoll notes."

Interesting point, which I thought any LGBTQIA+ advocate would wholeheartedly agree with. If Driscoll's view is true then it sort of proves that everyone is a little bit gay, right? Instead the author puts the quote in as if we will find it so ridiculous as to simply reject it without question. I guess he thinks I'm an idiot.

"Often these arguments hinge on the Biblical story of Onan, a man who purposefully “spilled his seed the ground” according to Genesis 38, as proof masturbation’s sinfulness.

This couldn’t be further from the truth, of course. Masturbation is a perfectly normal, healthy behavior, for those who are single, in relationships, or those who are sexually inactive."

So... Christian teachings on the sinfulness of masturbation "hinge on the ... story of Onan"? Could you at least have found one teaching that uses the story of good old Onan as proof that masturbation is wrong? There is no mention made of masturbation in the Onan story, and nobody who read the story of Onan thought it was about the evils of masturbating. If anything it's about the evils of "pulling out." And the author of the article even quotes another author to explain the true meaning of the Onan story!

Do Christians anywhere say that masturbation is not "normal"? Are there Christians who teach that masturbation is "unhealthy"? Maybe there are, so where are their views? 

"Matthew Vines, author of God and the Gay Christian, notes that the story of Onan is being read incorrectly, with the Bible’s words being twisted to make masturbation seem bad.

“The wicked thing that arouses God’s wrath was not Onan’s act of non-procreative sex, but his refusal to fulfill a family obligation of great consequence under the Old Testament,” Vines writes."

Okay so... you're telling me all or most or even some Christians disagree with Vines' reading of the Onan story? And yet you couldn't come up with even one example.

The author ends with all the points he should have made in the beginning, but better late than never:

"Around the world, there are currently more than 2 billion people who consider themselves Christian in some way or another. In the United States, this number is closer to 250 million.

"Christian ideology comes in many forms, from liberal Protestants who actively welcome the queer and trans communities to conservative Catholics who believe mass should only be said in Latin.

"There is no universal Christian, as there is no universal Christian church. That said, there are still far too many Christians who subscribe to a narrow ideology of purity and female submissiveness, of homophobia and general intolerance.

"If the religion is going to endure, however, especially in the West, it must adapt to a world that no longer considers women subordinate, divorcees immoral and the LGBTQIA+ community sinners."

Quick question: WHY does the author care whether or not Christianity can "endure"? Is he merely trying to convince young Christians who don't want to be seen as "homophobic" "intolerant" "narrow"-minded to rise up and forcefully change the core beliefs of Christianity? Because that, to me, is no different than letting Christianity simply die out on its own due to a lack of interest.

Now you might be saying, "But surely you can't think all feminists think this way! This is just one example of a narrow-minded idiot!"

Of course I don't believe all feminists are this way. I also don't believe all religious people think alike, either. For every genius a camp produces, there are just as many mean-spirited idiots. The point is that we choose what we want to believe and argue for that belief. Painting the other side as a bunch of backwards, retarded yokels who are "unenlightened" "oppressed" have "unhealthy" views on things is insulting. It's just another way of othering the opposition by painting them, colonialist-like, as savages and brutes. Gays argue that Christians do this to them. Christians clearly are having it done to them by articles like this. Jews had it done to them by Europeans. Mormons had it done to them by Americans. Indigenous people had it done to them by all kinds of colonizers.

If an entire generation is led to abandon their most sacred beliefs because of articles like this, then I guess religion deserves to die. Its adherents were too stupid and faithless to continue following it. But all I ask is for you to stop dehumanizing me. I am not a moron. I do not believe the things I believe because I was "brainwashed." My ancestors did not bleed and die for their beliefs, have their Constitutional rights taken away, and live in abject poverty hated by their fellow man because they were somehow "tricked." If you want to discuss philosophy, morality, or the merits of traditionalism I am all for it. If you want to disagree with my religion, that's fine. But don't say it's because of your enlightened intellectual superiority. It just makes you seem like a dick.

2014 Hiatus

Hi K-Mart's Basement.

I haven't written in this for a long time. It feels like a long time. It's not that I ran out of things to say, but more like I just sort of realized that my insights into things are not new, and not really readable anyway. A lot can change in three years of working and reading and writing, and I feel kind of stupid about most of the things I've written in here. I am not closing down this blog by any means, but I feel like it's going to take some time before I feel ready to devote time to this again. Not that anything I had to say was revolutionary by any means. I never really thought it was. I just had a handful of friends or acquaintances who would check in on me and make me feel like I was smart or something. I don't know where they all are now.

Anyway, we're still on hiatus. Maybe once grad school is over, we can try this again.

2013 Hiatus

I know it's 21 days into the 9th month of 2013, but I wanted to make it clear that this is simply another hiatus. I spend a lot of time online (too much) and I often come across blogs that ended one or two years ago. They always have these "goodbye" messages that always strike me as ineffably sad for some reason. I don't even know the people associated with the blogs, I'm just sad that they are gone after what appears to be so many years of work. Some of them are blogs that ran from 2003 through 2008, or 2001 through 2010. And then this goodbye message from 2007 or 2011 just stays there for all time.

I suppose blogs aren't really that important/popular anymore, now that the excitement of being able to publish whatever you want online has definitely worn off. Maybe it's just people my age who were so fascinated by it. We were the ones who were teenagers when suddenly the internet made socializing with the entire earth possible. Those who went before us were too old to care, those who came after saw it as utterly commonplace. Now we're in our late twenties or early thirties and the thrill has diminished? I don't know. It's not like anyone ever read this stuff anyway; I just liked the idea that someone COULD read it.

For people like me it started with personal home pages in the late nineties (Livejournal stuff) and then became really popular with blogging... Then there was Myspace, followed by Facebook (which nobody cares about anymore). It seems that lots of people talk about Twitter, but to me that's just a place for famous people to put out insipid thoughts on insipid topics at however many characters at a time.

Has the internet just become like television? What was once miraculous is now utterly banal and normal? It feels that way to me. It also feels like fewer people care about text-based things where video and pictures are all the rage. A blog is usually just a big block of text and it's really internal and really boring.

I'm not giving up on my blog. In fact, these past couple of years have given me plenty of experiences to write about. Just checking in on this place, so that anyone else like me out there who happens to stumble upon the blog won't see "2012 Hiatus" as the final status and feel a twinge of sadness at it. It's not dead yet. I'll be back when I have something that I actually feel is important enough to write about.