Was it really such a big deal for former American Idol contestant Clay Aiken to announce that he struggles with homosexuality? With nearly every major pop culture magazine – and even some newspapers – carrying the story, I guess it is a big deal. Even celebrities like movie star Vivica A. Fox and talk show host Jerry Springer expressed their support, applauding Aiken for his bravery and America for its progress in accepting people for “who they are.”
As Fox stated, “I was very proud of him as a man to say ‘I’m gay,’ especially in the Hollywood industry where you can be blacklisted. But I salute him. ”
Springer remarked, “That’s where America has progressed – it’s not telling people who they do and don’t have to be. We all want to be loved, we all want to be accepted and if you can find happiness, then God bless.”
However, is the media’s coverage of Aiken’s announcement really a matter of “bravery” and of accepting Aiken’s “identity,” or is it merely another ready-made vehicle for homosexual activists to promote their agenda?
First, since when did it become a mark of bravery to do something commonplace? Admitting to homosexuality is no longer a source of cultural shame or embarrassment. Not only have many well-known talk show hosts, singers, and movie stars recently announced their homosexuality without any serious loss in popularity, but many television shows are also promoting homosexuality by casting homosexual and bisexual characters. In fact, according to a study by the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD), broadcast television will have 16 “gay” and bisexual characters on prime time this fall. That is more than double the number compared to a year ago.1
Second, there is a political advantage for someone announcing his homosexuality. Certain big-name celebrities and producers have unashamedly donated tens of thousands of dollars to fight against California’s Proposition 8, which would overturn the California Supreme Court decision on same-sex “marriage” and restore the will of the people who voted by more than 60 percent in 2000 to keep the traditional definition of marriage.
With so much mainstream support, brave is hardly the term I would use to describe a celebrity who decides to “come out of the closet.”
Third, not only have the media and celebrities misunderstood bravery, they have also misunderstood identity. An identity involves attributes of a person’s personality, like perfectionism or honesty. Being homosexual is not a mark of identity; it is a behavior.
According to Dr. David E. James, author of God’s Truth about Gender, a book dedicated to answering the question about being born homosexual, “Contrary to gay propaganda, sexuality is not an identity. It is a behavior term. Feelings do not give us our identities. There is an error in thinking that how one feels determines what is justifiable behavior.”2
This is an important distinction to make because homosexuals and their proponents often accuse those who see homosexuality as an immoral and unhealthy lifestyle of rejecting homosexuals for “who they are,” of denying homosexuals their “basic human rights,” and of being “homophobes.” The truth is that they have rejected a behavior as one would reject lying, stealing, murder, substance abuse, and all other behaviors that prove destructive to an individual and detrimental to society.
As Matt Barber, former policy director for cultural issues at Concerned Women for America, explains, “Throughout society, homosexual activists demand that homosexual behaviors not only be ‘tolerated,’ but celebrated.”3 If we as Christians are not discerning, we can be mislead by the media’s coverage of homosexuality.
Simply stated, God says the act of homosexuality is wrong. Period. Bravery and acceptance have nothing to do with it. True bravery lies in turning from such immoral behavior to the God who so patiently waits to forgive us.
Leah Hird is an intern with Concerned Women for America’s Ronald Reagan Memorial Internship Program. To find out more about the program, visit www.cwfa.org/internships.asp .
Young, Eric. “Hollywood’s Embrace of Homosexuality Adds Fuel to Debates.” The Christian Post. 25 Sep 2008. http://www.christianpost.com/article/20080925/hollywood-s-embrace-of-homosexuality-adds-fuel-to-debates.htm Ibid. Barber, Matt. “Unmasking the ‘Gay’ Agenda.” Concerned Women for America. 26 Sep 2008. http://concernedwomen.org/articledisplay.asp?id=14696&department=CFI&categoryid=family