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Prejudice vs. Religious Conviction

Updated on September 12, 2015

With everything going on in the news concerning same-sex marriage, religious freedom, and the scandals that arise when these issues collide, there is one burning question that begs to be answered. When does one's religious convictions overreach into someone's civil rights? I could have written an extensive article citing Bible verses, the Constitution, and historical civil rights events, but I think this chart sums it up beautifully and succinctly. Please note that the definition of "same-sex relationships" as used in this chart is any sort of "non-traditional" association or union, including but not limited to, marriage among members of the LGBTQ community.

Let's put this into perspective.

1. When was the last time a Jewish friend told you you can't eat a ham sandwich? If your answer is anything other than "never", your friend was wrong. Eat your ham sandwich, if you wish. *

2. When was the last time a Mormon friend told you you can't drink coffee or Coke? If your answer is anything other than "never", your friend was wrong. Drink your caffeinated beverage, if you wish.

3. When was the last time a Catholic friend chastised you for using birth control? If your answer is anything other than "never", your friend was wrong. Use birth control, if you wish.

4. When was the last time a Hindu friend told you you can't eat beef? If your answer is anything other than "never", your friend was wrong. Eat beef, if you wish.

5. When was the last time a Muslim friend chewed you out for not wearing a head covering, or for not making your woman wear a head covering? If your answer is anything other than "never", your friend was wrong. Don't bother with a head covering, if you wish.

6. When was the last time an Atheist friend told you you are an idiot for believing in God? If your answer is anything other than "never", your friend was wrong. Believe in God, if you wish.

So, when was the last time a you, or a Christian friend, told someone else that a same-sex relationship is wrong? If your answer is anything other than "never", you or your friend was wrong. You have no say over other people who chose to have a same-sex relationship. Especially now since, thankfully, civil rights laws are in place to protect this.

Oh yes, and....
7. When was the last time one of your LGBTQ friends made you feel bad for being in a heterosexual relationship? Never, right?

"But Kyndria, I don't have any Jewish, Mormon, Catholic, Hindu, Muslim or Atheist friends. I also don't know anyone who is lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, or queer."

Seriously? That's really sad. You really need to get out more.


* Granted there are times when you are in a person's home or in a foreign country when it would be best to adhere to someone else's traditions so as not to bring attention to yourself, such as eating the food that is served to you, or dressing appropriately for that country, but for the purposes of this article, we are talking in the U.S. in public, or in your own home.

The Author

Kyndria Brown studied Bible and Theology at Wheaton College, Wheaton IL, and has her degree in French literature and culture. She has three adult children, the oldest of which is a member of the LGBTQ community.

POLL - Please tell us what you think.

Do you agree with this chart?

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    • Kyndria profile image

      Kyndria 2 years ago from Shoreline Connecticut

      Paul - Thank you for your comment. Overzealous LGBTQ members or allies have no more of a right to chew you out for your beliefs than you have chewing them out for their lifestyle. The whole point is respecting each other's differences and being willing to live and let live. As long as you aren't telling them how they should live their lives, and are not telling them they are wrong, the best way to handle this kind of encounter is just to say, "I'm not telling you how to live your life and I don't expect you to tell me how to live mine." and then just walk away. But keep in mind that as time goes on, anyone who holds anti-LGBTQ views will be seen, more and more, as bigots if they are vocal about telling others they are "sinning" or wrong. Just like my Jewish friends who keep quiet when I order a ham sandwich in front of them, you are going to have to keep your views to yourself. And no this isn't persecution. Persecution would be forcing you to marry and have sex with someone of your own sex against your will and conscience. Simply staying quiet is the price we all pay for living in a secular melting-pot society, especially when what you believe is against current civil rights laws and movements. Good luck to you, and thank you for reading my article.

    • profile image

      Paul S 2 years ago

      What should I do if someone -- specifically a gay friend -- asks me if I believe homosexuality is right, while it is contrary to my religious convictions? I've endured someone calling me up to yell at me day after day for an interaction I neither initiated nor desired. And yes, we made it through and are still friends.

    • noniebdavis profile image

      NBD 2 years ago from Diamond Bar, California

      I stopped calling myself Christian a long time ago because of people confusing their moral superiority with true religion. Sometimes the biggest problem I have with religion is judgement. Christians are taught that Jesus died for their sins, and that no one other than god can judge them. So why do they feel the need to judge others?

      Saying that we should not allow gay people to marry because of Christian religious beliefs is foolish. Christians should be forgiving and not judge other people by their sins. Having sex with people before you're married, getting a tattoo, among many other things (a lot of everyday American's do) can be considered a Christian sin.

      I feel as human beings it is our job not to judge other people based on their choices, especially when those judgements are based in prejudice and the other person is not harming anyone. You can be accepting of a person without accepting their sins.

      Afterall, Jesus himself was friends with a whore, or did today's Christians forget he didn't judge people based on their sins?

      Control freaks are everywhere, sometimes I wish someone would come and write their sins in the sand for everyone to see... Maybe then people would stop judging and just worry about their own lives.

    • profile image

      Erik Franko 2 years ago

      Please, please, PLEASE! Stop using God as an excuse to be a control freak.