Jesus Needs New PR

Jesus Needs New PR


BACK-TO-SCHOOL TIPS: Identify the GAY AGENDA!

THIS JUST IN: THE GAY AGENDA IS SNEAKY.

Can I hear you praise the Lord with a little Woop! Woop!????

(Cue the song, “Come On Ride the Train.”)

Listen up Christian parents! Well, actually the only ones who need to listen up are those Christian parents who are godless and don’t homeschool or too cheap or broke or godless and don’t send your kids to private Christian school.

Why?! Because you need to be prepared, people!

So… here’s your to-do list…

Dust off your breastplate of righteousness!

Sharpen and polish your axe of condemnation!

And by golly, don’t forget your God-given gaydar!

Because we’ve got a dirty gay agenda to fight! That’s right! THE GAY AGENDA IS TRYING TO SODOMIZE CHRISTIANS EVERYWHERE. And we’re not going to pitch our tents anywhere close to where their agendas might be. RIGHT?!

Seriously people, the gays are the new Philistines! (Grab your slingshots and pebbles and be prepared to SHOOT.)

You know it’s true, right? Seriously, we’ve got a big fight ahead of us. Last week it was the Muslims, and this week it’s the GAYS!! Because we don’t want them trying to build one of their homosexual mosques (Code for BATH HOUSES!) in YOUR child’s school library. You know that’s what they’re going to try to do right? That, and befriend your son with the lisp. You don’t want your Little Peter getting any ideas, do you?! UGH! A book about gay penguins might make him gay before he’s old enough to DRIVE! Sheesh. What’s the world coming to when you can’t even keep your kid in the closet until he’s 18 and NOT YOUR RESPONSIBILITY?! Because that’s what those gay people will do–turn your kid GAY!

Because they’re sneaky.

And chances are, they’ll demand to have a Lady Gaga Day during your child’s school’s Spirit Week. (rah. rah. ah. ah. ah. roma. roma. ma.)

We won’t let them, right?! RIGHT?

Well, if you’re with me, watch the above piece from those lovable fuzzy SMART snazzy video-making Christians from Focus on the Family. (And folks, these FOCUS people are as sneaky as penguins!!)

Oh, and one more thing… don’t forget to pack your Christian Agenda! You’re going to need it. We don’t don’t want to leave the spot where the gay agenda was empty do we?! We need to fill it with some wholesome or guilt-inducing–you know, some like Creationism or the TEN COMMANDMENTS or perhaps hang up a few of those signs about how condoms in schools are permission slips for SEX.

Okay. Ready?! Cue Choo Choo song. Let’s form a train. Altogether now.



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Riggs

posted August 26, 2010 at 7:06 pm


What about the “snarky, sarcastic, judgemental, sneaky hidden hate so called Christian” blogger agenda



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    Matthew Paul Turner

    posted August 26, 2010 at 7:15 pm


    And I don’t think there’s anything sneaky about this post.

    And there’s nothing sneaky about your comment either.



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      KatR

      posted August 26, 2010 at 7:40 pm


      I can only imagine the phrase “sneaky hidden hate so called Christian” spoken in a Valley Girl accent.



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        truffles

        posted August 31, 2010 at 10:29 pm


        no one is being sneaky. they all believe that they’re right. all i understand is that i have never tried to convert anyone to my jewish, heterosexual, or white ways, but dang it, every time i go to a public place to consume in the beautiful land that God gave us called America, i’m confronted with Christians telling me i need to be saved. my lesbo mother never told me there would be days like this.



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      Riggs

      posted August 26, 2010 at 8:06 pm


      Ok sorry for my knee-jerk response and I admit I didn’t watch video but the “sarcastic tone” of the post does come across as slightly judgmental.



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        Matthew Paul Turner

        posted August 26, 2010 at 8:10 pm


        And you know what, Matt? Maybe my post is a little judgmental. I’m human. And too, the only people Jesus ever “judged” were religious people. Now I’m not Jesus, I know. But sometimes you gotta call and spade a spade… and so if that makes me judgmental, so be it. More Christians should be standing up against crap like this in my opinion.

        How DARE we let orgs like Focus get away with this kind of message? And to do as if it’s warranted by God. I don’t get it.



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          Riggs

          posted August 27, 2010 at 6:30 am


          Matthew 7:3-5

          Why do you look at the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye?

          Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ and behold, the log is in your own eye?

          You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother’s eye.



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          Amanda

          posted August 29, 2010 at 10:20 am


          “How DARE we let orgs like Focus get away with this kind of message? And to do as if it’s warranted by God. I don’t get it.”

          Thank you for standing up and saying what everyone else is too terrified or brainwashed or concerned with what everyone else will think to say. And sorry for the awful run on sentence. I, for one, agree 110% and didn’t know others felt the same way until I found a Reconciling Methodist congregation when I moved away from home in college and cried after the first sermon on tolerance. I never thought I’d find a pastor saying those things.

          So thanks.



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    Joe Crenshaw

    posted August 26, 2010 at 8:20 pm


    Ouch!!!!



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      Melody

      posted August 27, 2010 at 12:12 pm


      Taste of your own medicine, Riggs. Can’t take a joke? Go gripe on another oh-so-serious blog.



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Mary

posted August 26, 2010 at 7:07 pm


I live up the road from Focus. A popular bumper sticker around here is the one that says: “God save me from your followers”



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    Fred Knowlton

    posted August 26, 2010 at 7:33 pm


    There is a great documentary by Dan Merchant called “Lord Save Us From Your Followers” I Highly recommend it!!



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      Z

      posted August 27, 2010 at 8:11 am


      yeah that’s a powerful documentary



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Recovering Alumni

posted August 26, 2010 at 7:18 pm


axe of condemnation…..it’s funny ’cause its true!!



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Crystal

posted August 26, 2010 at 7:23 pm


Buzzwords /dog whistle terms from the video:
“Gay agenda…” — “Homosexuality lessons…”

Ignorance with PR spin. :(



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Nate

posted August 26, 2010 at 7:24 pm


Yes, most parents do not want to teach tolerance, acceptance and grace in schools. Those sneaky gays are always trying to make us love one another – such blasphemy. Also, “And Tango Makes Three” is a great book.



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    Silica

    posted August 26, 2010 at 7:52 pm


    As a (former) public school teacher, I have run into so many parents who really really opposed to those things. I have been called a “communist hippie” for teaching kids about the slave trade as part of our study of “Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry.”

    Never mind my campaign against the words “gay” and “retarded” as insults. I got “free speech” complaints in my e-mail inbox and voicemail for those.
    :( There’s a lot wrong with public schools, but I’ve found parents account for a lot of it. You can’t do much to combat ignorance when that’s all that’s promoted at home.



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      truffles

      posted August 31, 2010 at 10:45 pm


      thank you for trying. i wish my unborn children could have had you as their teacher.



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BDC

posted August 26, 2010 at 7:25 pm


Here’s my gay agenda = to avoid people like this at all costs ands gain legal rights as a citizen in the name of the constitution as opposed to a specific religion.



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gubeltrut

posted August 26, 2010 at 7:26 pm


OMG! They use small furry animals!

Is it bad that all the things they are saying on here and objecting to, I’m thinking, “wow… I wish this stuff had been in MY school!”



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    Steve D

    posted August 26, 2010 at 7:31 pm


    I often worry about those small furry animals!



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Steve D

posted August 26, 2010 at 7:27 pm


Yup, the Gay Agenda (R) is VERY sneaky. “Go to your school’s library’s web page and search ‘gay’. Damn, wish they weren’t so sneaky!

Next they say that “bullying” is another word to look for. Many schools have anti-bullying programs in place. They started after Columbine.



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Chris

posted August 26, 2010 at 7:33 pm


I can’t believe I made it through that video. I want to throw up, literally.
Heaven forbid children who are struggling with sexual orientation or sexual identity issues be protected from bullying.

I wish the people in this video and the parents they are trying to reach would be as passionate about helping people in need and making sure children have enough food to eat before they go to school and that they are protected from violence on the playground and at home, or maybe helping children learn to read by volunteering in a reading assistance program at their child’s school.
This issue makes my blood boil.



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Dianna

posted August 26, 2010 at 7:40 pm


Oh those gays, they’re so sneaky. Hiding books in a public school library where you can search them and find them, and no kids are actually FORCED to read them. They’re like fabulous ninjas! What will they think of next?! Theater departments? …what? OH GOD.



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Wes

posted August 26, 2010 at 7:51 pm


As a Christian, that video builds a mosque of embarrassment at the ground zero of my heart.



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    Rand

    posted August 26, 2010 at 8:02 pm


    OMG, Kudos to Wes.



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    RobM

    posted August 26, 2010 at 8:18 pm


    Very much like!



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      John

      posted August 28, 2010 at 9:24 am


      Wes,

      Your comment might just be the best thing I’ve read on this site.

      (No offense, MPT. I still love ya.)



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cap'n

posted August 26, 2010 at 8:00 pm


Dang, taking Tinky Winky’s purse away all those years ago didn’t solve anything, did it!



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RobM

posted August 26, 2010 at 8:17 pm


I can’t tell if FOCUS thinks it’s OK to bully gay people, or are trying to insinuate that gays are making up stories about being bullied at school, but I find that very disturbing that they would in anyway insuate that gays complaining about being bullied shouldn’t be taken seriously.



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Micah

posted August 26, 2010 at 8:24 pm


Wow. My wife kept asking me, “Is that for real? Are they serious?” It makes me sick to my stomach that they are serious. Focus is a total embarrassment to the Christian faith, and then you add in the situation with George Rekers back in the spring/summer…holy cow! Sick people. This is what happens when religion is molded around the beliefs/opinions/agenda of an individual or group instead of the individual/group being molded by Jesus. Ugh. And Chris, I totally agree with you. According to research, these people/parents are the types that help out/volunteer/give the least (whether in the the secular or sacred environment). God bless them, because they need it (I need to go pray or something…rrrr). Thanks for doing what you do, MPT.



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scott overpeck

posted August 26, 2010 at 8:26 pm


Gay penguins adopting a baby penguin sounds like the cutest movie ever!!! I want to buy the rights if any anyone knows the author!!!

And I believe the furry animal thing is different from the gay thing, isn’t it? I mean, I am not down with either of them personally, but pretty sure they are not the same…

Preserving ignorance (ah, i mean, uh, “innocence”) rarely helps people see your side, regardless of your stance on the issue.



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Joe Crenshaw

posted August 26, 2010 at 8:28 pm


The gay agenda has been very powerful in this nation. Just 20 years ago the idea of gay marriage seemed absurd. For thousands of years marriage has been a heterosexual construct even in polygamus societies.

But, now we have this re-defining of marriage, guess what? Men can marry Men! Women can marry Women.

Does anyone remember something called Sin? Holiness? Why JESUS died and rose again in the first place? Sin separating us from GOD?

I agree, that we as Christians spend too much time worrying about the sins of others but not our own sins. But come on now, there is a radical gay agenda, that has changed this nation.

While I disagree with gay marriage, our society is founded on the constitution, not the law of GOD, therefore our nation allows for gay marriage and polygamy because the constitution does not define marriage. Same for abortion, drunkenness, porn, fornication and other sins.

I don’t think we should spend our times as Christians as the wackos do targeting and making our lives going after the sins of others, using covering our own hypocrisies.

But I don’t think we should endorse sin either, I don’t think we need to be pro gay or anti gay, we need to be pro CHRIST.

As he said to the women caught in the act of adultery, “Go and sin, no more.”

I guess that’s the part of JESUS’ message liberals ignore!



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    Silica

    posted August 26, 2010 at 8:42 pm


    So we’ll add gays to the list of “people Joe doesn’t like.”

    At the same time, there’s no excuse to bully children, whether their sexual orientation is actually “other” or is just perceived as such. Or even for other reasons.

    I’m also pretty sure that it’s not just liberals out there ignoring some part of Jesus’s message. Everybody is probably guilty of that. Except if you homeschool your kids and give them “science” textbooks with people riding dinosaurs.



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    RobM

    posted August 26, 2010 at 8:44 pm


    What more powerful than the gay agenda is the agenda of equal rights for all. It’s right there in the constitution. 50 years ago, Blacks voting was unthinkable. 100 years ago women voting was unthinkable.



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      Silica

      posted August 26, 2010 at 8:53 pm


      An idea which also exists in Christianity…we all have worth as human beings, even though we are all sinners. :) And that’s an idea that still doesn’t have much hold with some Christians. :/



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      Joe Crenshaw

      posted August 27, 2010 at 6:46 am


      So being gay is like being black or being a woman right? Come on liberals, why can’t folks who defend the wickedness of homosexuality stand on their own two feet?

      The subject at hand isn’t black rights or women’s rights it’s the radical gay agenda that has perverted our nation.

      But homosexuality is a sin that liberals love to defend as so called conservatives love to defend bigotry and self righteousness. Both are wrong.



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        Silica

        posted August 27, 2010 at 7:14 am


        Well, science would suggest sexual orientation occurs naturally, whether it’s straight, gay, or otherwise. While race is not biological (and neither is gender…although sex is) but a social construct, people still face real hurdles based on their perceived belonging to a particular group.

        But that would diminish the fearmongering capabilities of those who think all the gays are out to “get us.”

        I’ve seen firsthand what hatred against gays can do. I’ve been active in GSAs and other organizations promoting equality since high school after seeing my best friend be harassed constantly simply for who he is. I can’t stand by and see other people experience that.

        You say that it’s wrong for conservatives to defend bigotry and self-righteousness, but I have yet to find a comment where you seriously do anything but express bigoted views self-righteously and make blanketed statements about a variety of different groups of people – whether it be their religion, their political affiliation, or their sexual orientation. You are not going to get people to agree with you this way. You’re actually confirming (at least for me) that I am very glad that I no longer hold points of view like yours.



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          Joe Crenshaw

          posted August 27, 2010 at 10:18 am


          Silica,

          You seem to be the bigoted one. Folks can debate about whether someone is born gay, there is no debate about someone being born, black, white, east asian, arabic, etc.

          Again, why can’t homosexuality stand on its own? Why do liberals who are bigoted and prejudice feel the need to shout down “moral superiority” on those who disagree with them?

          Homosexuality is a sin, period. GOD’s law, GOD’s rules. As I have stated before, I don’t rush to assail homosexuals, but I don’t rush to defend their agenda either.

          Let’s be honest, everyone has an agenda, liberal bigots, conservative bigots, everyone.

          Nothing wrong about teaching your children about the Christian doctrine and about right and wrong and about our constitution which allows for folks to live free, including gays, gay marriage and transgender/cross dressers.

          But as fornication is legal, I don’t push it either. I don’t see folks defending fornicators like they do homosexuals, maybe nothing is a sin?



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        John

        posted August 28, 2010 at 9:26 am


        Joe:

        Dude, you have to seriously be repressed. Otherwise, who spends their time railing against the secret, evil liberal agenda via a blog comments section?



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    Ginny

    posted August 28, 2010 at 10:20 am


    Funny, cause it seems like the message that people like you ignore is, “Judge not least ye be judged.”

    Maybe you should be worried about yourself and figure out if you’re right with the Lord when he comes back instead of worrying about other people’s choices that.. and here’s the shocker.. God himself told people they had.



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Samantha

posted August 26, 2010 at 8:41 pm


Personally, I think this lady needs to stop “witch (or gay) hunting” and concern herself with learning to apply her foundation. That make-up line around her chin is killing me.

I’m a teacher, and I would junk punch any parent who tried to pull this in my school or with my lessons.



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    Matthew Paul Turner

    posted August 26, 2010 at 9:14 pm


    This is HILARIOUS. :)



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    RobM

    posted August 27, 2010 at 8:11 am


    I wholeheartedly endorse the junk punch! :)



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Joel

posted August 26, 2010 at 8:46 pm


“All human beings are created by God. And, so every human being has innate worth and dignity”. Unless, of course, you’re gay. Then, we’ll marginalize you and demonize everything you say and do. Honestly, how did she keep a straight face while she said that?



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    RobM

    posted August 26, 2010 at 8:50 pm


    No joke! I don’t know how you can transition w/ nothing but a “but”, from that right to , reasons why God either didn’t create gays w/ the same worth or value, or if he did, he can’t possibly mean for it to still apply once they have an “agenda”.



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Matt Kelley

posted August 26, 2010 at 8:59 pm


I think the Lord needs to be praised for this valuable information with a FABULOUS musical theatre medley!



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Ben

posted August 26, 2010 at 9:02 pm


It is frustrating for young 20 something Christians to see organizations like this in an influential role in Christian culture. I’m told everyday something I should be afraid of: Muslims, gays, darwinists, people who don’t believe in inerrancy of scripture. I’m never told to love anyone, anyone at all, except those who aren’t “heretical.”

I’m tired of it. And I know I’m not the only one.

I know that Jesus has called me to love, not fear. So I will love the homosexual who might be trying to get my kids to accept his lifestyle. I know that I have taught them right from wrong. I will love the Muslim that wants to build a Mosque in my neighborhood. He is just as important to Jesus as I am. And I will love all those who believe differently than me, and hope that the good news of Jesus Christ shines through me, making the people in my life want to know a little more about him.



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    Kevin

    posted August 26, 2010 at 11:42 pm


    couldn’t hace said it better myself Ben.

    The big problem is that our stand makes us “false”.



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    Matthew Paul Turner

    posted August 26, 2010 at 11:45 pm


    Thank u for this. Love it.



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    Crystal

    posted August 27, 2010 at 4:09 am


    Bravo, brother. Amen to that.



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    Wes

    posted August 27, 2010 at 3:22 pm


    THIS!



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scott overpeck

posted August 26, 2010 at 9:20 pm


If gays are so sneaky, why can’t they be in the military? Wouldn’t we want the sneakiest among us doing special forces and stuff?



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Mike

posted August 26, 2010 at 10:13 pm


Thank you for this information, I’m very interested.



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James

posted August 27, 2010 at 12:03 am


Where is my comment? I know I posted it here… I saw it… I copied and pasted it to Word after it posted… What happened to it?



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Charlie's Church of Christ

posted August 27, 2010 at 1:19 am


oh no – my parents are coming to visit in 2 days who listen to focus on the family daily on the radio. In the course of 7 days I may crack and reveal my disdain, which will be met with a firestorm to make Satan envy….



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    RobM

    posted August 27, 2010 at 12:24 pm


    Good luck!



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Matt

posted August 27, 2010 at 5:47 am


As a Christian, bisexual, public school teacher I find this video SUPER offensive. It honestly makes me sad for the children of people that may watch this video and try to implement it. I teach that no matter who you are, when you walk through my door you are to be treated with respect because you are a human being and part of the human family. This is not a political issue or agenda. This is about people. People who have had their civil rights violated for way too long. Without knowing it, groups like the one in this video are echoing many of the same things that Hitler said against homosexuals.

On another note, what about the furry animals and friendly vegetables that are being used to brain wash children for the Christian (and occasionally bigoted) agenda? But I guess that doesn’t matter to them because it is something they agree with. Seriously people.



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Kathy Pride

posted August 27, 2010 at 6:32 am


OMG…I couldn’t even make it through a minute and a half of the video. I had to turn it OFF. This just makes me sad. My dad was an artist and knew a lot of gay people. They were a whole lot kinder than some Christians I had met…Glad someone speaks up! Thanks, MPT!



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Joe Crenshaw

posted August 27, 2010 at 7:00 am


I actually like the video, it speaks the biblical truth.

Some of you seem so hostile to christianity and our true doctrine, you come across as bigoted as the folks you condemn. Political ideology and personal feeling is destroying christianity from the inside.

Those on the left want ever sin and ever sinner greeted with rose pedals and a basket.

Those on the right what damnation and judgment, flames and torment upon those who don’t agree with their twisted creeds.

The rest of us just want “New PR” folks who love, and folks who still stand against wickedness. All we want is a balance. Folks who adhere to the doctrine, but folks not limited to their own creeds.

Folks who allow people to rage and curse, folks who allow people to cry and love, folks who will allow people to stand up for what’s right.

It seems like conservatives get too bent out of shape about homosexuality, pornography, evilution, socialism and the democratic party. While liberals get too bent out of shape about sin, holiness, righteousness, truth, faith, doctrine, justice, right, wrong, morality, wrath of GOD.

I agree, MPT, Jesus needs new PR, from both sides.



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Leanne

posted August 27, 2010 at 7:19 am


I think the American Church needs to rediscover God’s love. We have this fear that if we love homosexuals, love sinners; we automatically are supporting what we perceive as their sin.
Jesus ate at the sinners homes. Jesus taught sinners and hung out with them. And somehow, being loved by Christ, they changed. Zaccheus is so moved by Christ’s visit he responds by giving all he has stolen back.
Until we stop trying to be the Holy Spirit and convict people of their sin, until we stop trying to be God and change people, we will miserably sound like this movie and like Joe. Our job as spoken by Christ, is to love like Christ has loved. I believe Scripture is true when it says, it is God’s mercy which brings us to repentance; not a barrage of Scriptures or actions guided by fear.



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Dan S

posted August 27, 2010 at 7:20 am


You obviously fell for the sneaky gay agenda. I mean can’t you hear the hidden message in “Come On Ride the Train”?!



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Z

posted August 27, 2010 at 8:49 am


I just don’t know what the hell this video has to do with true Christianity. Focus on the Family has really dropped the ball and become (maybe always been?) a Glenn Beck/Pat Robertson propaganda machine. If you want your child to be sheltered from everything and anything that MIGHT be different than your own beliefs, move to Alaska, shoot animals with Sarah, Todd and Bristol, and home school in b/w helicopter rides. The only agenda I see in that video is an extremist right wing agenda. I hope my future children never have to see garbage like this. Regardless of where one might stand on the subject at hand, this video helps no one. Instead of wasting all this time looking for gay furries in a children’s library (which might land you in jail depending on how you google) why dont you PRAY and be the hands and feet of Jesus for the people around you. Gay and Straight. I will teach my children morality and the Christian faith, not some insensitive ‘Reaganites’ (making up words like Palin!) who still think america is some new Zion land. This video is true bullshit.



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wasmfasm

posted August 27, 2010 at 9:29 am


Oh, my, word. So I laugh at the website that she adds called true tolerance. Ummm ok, so you think you are being the tolerant one by blocking even talking about LBGT? I mean come on FoF it is real, people are out there struggling with this issue even kids in Christian families. You can’t just ignore it and then call yourself tolerant…those two just don’t go together. What this lady is advocating is anything but tolerance. That doesn’t mean that Christian parents shouldn’t voice their concern especially in clearly egregious situations, but come on. For this lady the mere shelving of a book turns her world upside-down so really I see absolutely *0* tolerance from this group.

Another interesting thing is that there are well documented, and plenty of them, cases of homosexual behavior both in penguins and across the animal kingdom. This is something that a lot of Christians are unwilling to accept, but it is true. Homosexuality can and does occur within nature. And a book about penguins may be no more pro-lgbt then it is just showing the truth about nature.

I digress, If you are really this concerned about a book or a mention of homosexuality in your school than lock your children up in your basement. Only there can you ensure that they will never come into contact with something objectionable. Even Christian school can’t stop your children from going to public library or hearing something from their friends or on TV. The rest of us live in the real world and use real world situations as teaching moments for *real* tolerance.



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Rafael

posted August 27, 2010 at 5:20 pm


well…it’s not as whistle blowing or as terrible as i expected. I didn’t know what gay was or that people were even open about it until I was fifteen. honestly. and I’m 21 so really I just left grade school. i dunno…now that the world is getting worse, our faith must get stronger.



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James

posted August 27, 2010 at 9:52 pm


I’m just going to assume that my original comment either didn’t post as I thought it did or was accidentally deleted… So, here it is again:

I have a hard time understanding how this is so terrible. All these people are saying is that we should be aware and informed. “Behold, I send you out as sheep among the wolves!” “You are to be as wise as serpents and harmless as doves.” How is making parents aware of a book like “Queer 13″ bad?

I appreciate what you do, Matt. I mean that sincerely. A lot of the stuff you post here either a) NEEDS to be heard due to its ridiculousness/heresy/etc… or b) is just good/fun to know for any number of reasons (crucifixes on stiletto heels? Those pics are still making the rounds among my lady friends). But I sometimes feel like you complain for the sake of complaining. You said in your first full response:

“Maybe my post is a little judgmental. I’m human. And too, the only people Jesus ever “judged” were religious people.”

That’s not entirely true. We have to be careful of this word “religious.” Jesus called out the Pharisees (not all of them mind you) who were being hypocrites. It’s probably safer, then, to say that Jesus “judged” (why are the quotes necessary?) people who tried to pass themselves off as sincerely religious, but were, in truth raging hypocrites.

“Now I’m not Jesus, I know. But sometimes you gotta call and spade a spade… and so if that makes me judgmental, so be it. More Christians should be standing up against crap like this in my opinion.”

And yet, in your original post, instead of citing any hypocrisy or, more importantly, outright error, you resorted to “the snarkiness” (I just like the term).

Nowhere in this video do they say anything approaching “Listen up Christian parents! Well, actually the only ones who need to listen up are those Christian parents who are godless and don’t homeschool or too cheap or broke or godless and don’t send your kids to private Christian school.”

Nowhere in this video do they say that “THE GAY AGENDA IS TRYING TO SODOMIZE CHRISTIANS EVERYWHERE. And we’re not going to pitch our tents anywhere close to where their agendas might be.” (Although I have to admit a REAL appreciation for the tent-pitching play on words. That was good!)

Nowhere in this video (and, just for the record, nowhere have I ever heard anyone say) that “A book about gay penguins might make him gay before he’s old enough to DRIVE!” The fact is this is an approach taken for the purposes of indoctrination and desensitization. That’s something of which we need to be aware.

You also said, “We don’t don’t want to leave the spot where the gay agenda was empty do we?! We need to fill it with some wholesome or guilt-inducing–you know, some like Creationism or the TEN COMMANDMENTS or perhaps hang up a few of those signs about how condoms in schools are permission slips for SEX.”

Well, GOD FORBID we try to teach people anything about God, or Creation or the Ten Commandments in school, right? After all, we don’t even know for sure if any of that stuff is real… wait… That’s another blog post you did. :-)

Seriously, Matt, I say again because I mean it: I appreciate what you do. Almost more than that, I appreciate and am glad for the (sometimes) dialog that occurs because of what you do. But, honestly, your original post was hateful and vitriolic, and all I heard from the people in the video was an attempt to inform out of a concern based in love.

So, who’s really the one with an axe-of-condemnation to grind?



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    Grant

    posted August 27, 2010 at 11:32 pm


    Finally, a voice of reason! I think homosexuality IS a sin, but I have never let that get in the way of how I treat another human being. I think the people on the video would say the same thing. I am not about the government coming in and taking books away from schools. I am also not for the government coming in and telling my kid to read, and more importantly ACCEPT, whatever they believe a kid should read and accept. There are some things you have to accept when you put your child in the public school system, but that doesn’t mean we have to bend over and spread it everytime! (Sorry, I know that was crass.)

    On another note, I think the people in the video are right when they say we should focus on the bully and not the victim. People get bullied for anything and everything. There are kids getting beat up and killed not just for being gay but for being different in any way. There are even Christian kids who get bullied for holding more traditional values or conservative values! Imagine that! I know that statement is going to make you progs. throw a shit fit. Anyway, bullying is wrong and evil and should be punished severely. I just don’t believe teaching kids about a certain behavior will produce more tolerance. If we were fair we would be writing books and having seminars on how to teach kids to accept other kids who dress differently or who don’t like sports. Kids will find the littlest detail to attack. That’s why we must focus on the bully.



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      Matthew Paul Turner

      posted August 28, 2010 at 6:45 am


      Do you know the meaning of the word “reason”? Don’t think so.



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        Grant

        posted August 30, 2010 at 12:33 am


        That’s a little harsh. Are you inferring that my post is UNreasonable? If so please provide examples. My tone was a little bit pissy, though. I’ll give you that. When I was reading the comments I felt I was being backed into a corner. (The optimal word is FELT. I know the world isn’t after me…I think.) If my comment, though, is the definition of unreasonable to you then may I point out some of your own videos and posts about some truly unreasonable people? Come on, man.



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      Dianna

      posted August 28, 2010 at 7:06 am


      First, a response to James:

      I certainly did not get “love” from this video at all. I didn’t get the idea that these people even know any homosexuals. If they did, they might be okay with teaching their kids about tolerance and understanding of people who are different.

      Particularly what annoys me about this approach, though, is that it takes critical thinking out of the hands of the parents and puts it in the hands of the church. You highlight this especially with the comment: “How is making parents aware of a book like “Queer 13″ bad?” The problem is – that’s the furthest a lot of parents will go when it comes to examining the issue. “This parachurch guide told me that it’s bad, so I don’t want it in the school library!” It’s no surprise that a number of book banning campaigns in the nation are run by evangelical parents, or people who don’t even have students at the school, but just simply object to things they’ve heard about the book – via broadcasts much like this one. The recent campaign against Maureen Johnson’s “Bermudez Triangle,” for example, claims that it has salacious sexuality and racy scenes, when anyone who had bothered to read past the first page would know that there is nothing of the sort. Yes, it has a gay main character, but so do lots of books for young adults. There are NO – absolutely NO – sex scenes in this highly praised, critically acclaimed, young adult novel. The idea of banning it under such reasons as “overt sexuality” is patently absurd.

      But, because the critical thinking about the literature has been removed from the realm of the parent, and we have been taught to blindly accept what the “church”/Focus on the Family tells us as fact, we get a lot of parents getting huffed up and angry about books they’ve never bothered to read. In the video, the lady’s FIRST INSTRUCTIONS are to merely search the school library to see HOW MANY books about LGBT are in there, as thought there’s some magic number. “OH GOSH NO THERE ARE 21! If there were 20, it’d be fine, but I simply cannot handle 21!” It’s absurd, and it’s advocating the banning and challenging of books without examining the material.

      The video shows, also, a profound misunderstanding and distrust of both the parent and the child. If the parent cannot discuss these issues with his/her child, especially if the child is over 13, which is the age group much of this tolerance education is aimed at, then there is something much further wrong than just “the gay agenda.”

      My problem is not with them “speaking the truth in love” or whatever (though I strongly disagree that this is what is happening), but instead, the problem lies with the lack of critical thinking that is applied to education here, especially with book banning. If you’re a parent who is worried about what their child is studying, for goodness’ sake, TALK TO THE TEACHER. FIND OUT what and why they are teaching these particular things. Don’t just paint them in the brush of a leftist gay agenda and take it to your school board to challenge the curriculum.

      If your kid brings home “Bermudez Triangle,” or “will grayson will grayson,” or “Fat Kid Rules the World” or “The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay,” (all highly acclaimed, many award winners [the last being having won a Pulitzer]) for god’s sake, READ THE BOOK with or before your kid. At most schools, if they are reading a book that may contain content the teacher thinks might be questionable for some of the students, it is common practice to send home a note saying “Hey, we’re reading such and such book, here’s a summary of the content that might be objectionable. If you have a problem, your student has the option of reading a different book.” It’s not like parents don’t have options, should they choose to be involved in their child’s education and actually DISCUSS things.

      That is not, however, what this video advocates. This video advocates basically doing a search in the library and then storming the castle, so to speak. And that – that lack of critical thinking, that shoot first and ask questions later approach – is what I find most objectionable.

      ****
      SECOND, Grant:

      How do we put the focus on the bully? I’m asking seriously. Because it seems to mean that a lot of bullies do stuff like bullying for attention, so making them the focus of discussion would be kind of counter-intuitive. Let me put it this way: My father works in the prison system as a teacher. One of the classes he teaches is “Impact of Crime on Victims.” Most of the time, criminals don’t realize that their actions have effects that harm other people. A focus on the victim is NECESSARY to make them change – it breeds empathy, it makes them less likely to commit an offense again. But if we took a solely “let’s focus on the bully” approach, which seems to mean that we concentrate solely on the bully and what he did wrong, we leave out that all-too-important aspect of empathy that is needed for true remorse. It’s like spanking – if all you do is teach the child that doing something wrong will bring him pain, it might get him to stop for the time being, but it doesn’t teach him the WHY of his actions being wrong. A focus on the victim does. When my parents would sit me down as a child and ask me, “Now, Dianna, you knocked over my favorite plant. How do you think that made me feel?”, it was ultimately more effective because it taught me that not only do my actions bring me pain in the form of a punishment, but that they hurt those around me too. That is something that is only achieved by allowing the victim to become a real person, and THAT is achieved through tolerance education.

      Evidently, though, teaching that others are real people only extends so far as that person is not gay. Who knew that’s what love looked like.



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        Matthew Paul Turner

        posted August 28, 2010 at 7:58 am


        Thank you, Dianna.

        Bravo.



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          Dianna

          posted August 28, 2010 at 8:14 am


          :) Thanks Matt. Being an English teacher and the daughter of two teachers, book banning and education tend to be hot button issues for me. Thanks for giving me the space to write a book about it here.



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        Grant

        posted August 30, 2010 at 12:19 am


        How do you know many of these kids have any sort of empathy or even have the ability to learn empathy? I don’t know, but I wouldn’t assume you would know either. Many of these kids are cruel and they get a sense of satisfaction from it (bullying). It gives them meaning. I don’t know, maybe I am a little more cynical than you, but that is what it seems like to me. Also, I said previously that there are many things that kids choose to set their sites on. Where would we even begin to address each individual one? I don’t have the answer. Also, you said that many kids bully because they want attention so it would be counter-intuitive to put the focus on them. Why couldn’t we try to figure out why they want the attention in the first place? I didn’t mean we should beat the sin out of them or lock them in a room. That wouldn’t do a bit of good. Learning the reasons behind a bullys action is a good thing. I just think that force feeding kids empathy lessons through books about homosexual penguins is a waste of time. Also, it neglects the countless other kids who are bullied for various other reasons.

        “Evidently, though, teaching that others are real people only extends so far as that person is not gay. Who knew that’s what love looked like.”

        On another note, were you directing that quote at me or the people in the video? If you are human you are human, end of story. Everyone deserves respect and everyone deserves to live in peace. The only thing, and I mean the only thing, that I disagree with is that some of this stuff in forced on kids. If other parents want their children to read a book (no matter what the content) then they should be allowed to read it. The same goes for the parents who don’t want their kids to read a certain book. There should be alternatives for those kids. Its a win-win situation and does not impinge on the rights of anyone. You (Dianna) may have the opinion that everyone should read a certain book because you champion the message it is preaching. That’s all fine and dandy. However, we have to allow a choice because many parents find these books or lessons objectionable. I think that’s reasonable enough, or do you want to have your cake and eat it too?



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          Dianna

          posted August 30, 2010 at 1:02 am


          Um, if you read my whole comment, there are alternatives set up in the majority of public schools for students to read another book if the parent finds it objectionable. This is a system I agree with. My problem comes when a parent is not okay with just their kid not reading the book, but doesn’t want ANYONE at the school to read the book. That’s where book banners come in, and that’s a problem.

          And yes, the last line was directed at the video more than anything.

          And like I said in my post, a focus on the victims is necessary to stop recidivism. If we can cultivate a sense of empathy in these bullies, we are more like to have success in terms of the punishment having a long term effect.



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        Grant

        posted August 30, 2010 at 4:10 pm


        You are right. I just skimmed your comment to James and fully read your comment to me. I must have missed that part at the end of your comment to James. I apologize. I guess we both agree that we shouldn’t ban books but give options.

        I have been out of high school for a few years now. In fact, I just graduated college. I am just commenting on what I have seen in my school years. Whenever we had these empathy lessons kids just seemed to brush them off. They would always resort to making fun or light of those lessons that were trying to teach them to be thoughtful and kind. It never seemed to sink in. It would be nice if these kids trully had a moment of clarity and saw the error in their ways. However, that seems to be something glorified and exaggerated in after school specials. I see what you are saying and you may have had other experiences. I am just commenting on what I have seen.



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Jenn

posted September 7, 2010 at 7:41 pm


I really think there are two separate issues here, and both sides (Focus and GLSEN) are lumping the two to gain traction. I do think it’s reprehensible for Focus or any organization passing themselves off as a voice of/for Christians to come out against the bullying stuff. To me that’s about protecting kids, period. And even in this post-”Will and Grace” world we live in, gay kids are targets for bullying, and sometimes violent bullying at that. I don’t have the numbers in front of me, but I am sure that gay teens are at a higher risk for suicide because of this very thing.

But I don’t think the answer to solve the problem is books and videos for kids, especially elementary kids. And it’s not that I’m worried the books/videos will “turn kids gay,” (I don’t know a single gay person who chose to be gay at all, much less because they saw a video), but the one book I saw mentioned for middle school kids seemed to be more about sex than identity. To me the books/videos issue is not about homosexuality or a gay agenda so much as it is about our kids being exposed to sex at younger and younger ages. (I was a sex/health educator for several years, so I’m not naive on this topic. To the contrary, I’ve seen the damage done when kids are exposed to sex too soon, whether it be on tv, in books or in real life.)

Why can’t it just be about treating each other with respect and love, period? I was raised watching Sesame Street and Mister Rogers, and all the after school specials, and not one episode ever made me think about being nicer to someone at school. No, it was the adults in my life who influenced how I felt about poor kids and black people and single moms and interracial couples. And thank God, my Mama loved Jesus, and she showed me through her life that we love people, regardless of what they look like or where they live or who they marry. She is still doing that today. If we want kids in this country to stop bullying others, then we have to stop bullying others. You can call it “taking back our schools” or “waging war with our culture” or whatever, but it’s bullying all the same.

We who call ourselves followers of Christ have got to do better. GLSEN is doing OUR job. We know how to end bullying better than any book or video ever could, we’re just not doing it.



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