Am I Crazy, Or…
I suppose it is understandable that I have devoted a lot of words to trans issues. As I have written several times, embedded within my identity are responsibilities, and I don’t aim to shirk them. But should we really be devoting this much time to this issue? Could it be possible more pressing issues need our attention?
I have been shocked by the never-ending protestations among Evangelicals on LGBTQ issues since the Supreme Court decision and the media focus on Caitlyn Jenner. Concerning gay marriage, Albert Mohler, president of Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville said, “Marriage is the ultimate social issue.” Okay, Al, really?
When you woke up this morning, there were over 19 million refugees in the world. Four million are Syrian refugees. Bashar al-Assad became the ruler of Syria in 2000 and when protests erupted as a part of the Arab Spring, his regime responded with gas and barrel bombs aimed at his own people. Assad wanted to take attention away from his atrocious government, so he targeted Sunni communities in the hopes of turning the civil unrest into a religious war between Shiites and Sunnis. His ploy worked. Sunnis from all over the Middle East came to fight against Bashar al-Assad’s Shiite government. The fear of ISIS then caused Iran and other primarily Shiite nations to support Assad, playing into his shrewd hands. Raging in Syria is a civil war with planetary implications. Yet here we are, focused on gay marriage.
Over 200,000 Syrians have been killed by one side or the other since the beginning of the Syrian civil war. One in five residents of Syria has fled the country. Every single day, thousands travel 3,500 miles over land and water to reach the few welcoming nations of Western Europe. Though they recently stepped up border controls, Germany has been the most supportive. Syrian refugees call Chancellor Angela Merkel, “Mother Merkel.” (Should we be surprised it is a female head of state who welcomes the homeless?)
While four million people have fled Syria, the United States has agreed to accept 10,000, one in 400. I guess we’re too busy watching Caitlyn Jenner’s reality show and choosing among the zillion Republican candidates who intend to somehow overturn the Supreme Court decision on gay marriage. We don’t have time to devote energy to housing the refugees of a brutal war. We are in the midst of the most serious refugee crisis since World War II, yet it took the picture of a dead child in the arms of a Turkish border guard to bring attention to the plight of millions.
Still, Evangelicals focus on gay marriage and trans rights. Last week I was interviewed by a Denver area newspaper because a transgender member of an Evangelical megachurch was barred from attending her church’s women’s retreat. Millions are fleeing their homes, and a megachurch focuses on a single transgender member who wants to go on a retreat.
I mean, that’s kinda like one potential shoe bomber causing an entire nation to have to take off its shoes, while between 1999 and 2012 there are 179 school shootings and nothing is done to stop the proliferation of firearms. Uh, wait a minute. That actually happened. Maybe I need to find a different illustration.
So you tell me. What should we be focusing on? Should it be the straw man we’ve created who has supposedly threatened the fabric of Western Civilization, or should we be focusing on the 19 million refugees wandering our planet who are desperately searching for a new home?
You tell me?