Be sure to read beyond the first sentence…

Thank God I’m a straight man who is trapped in a male body.

I say that NOT to lord it over the LGBTQIA community.
I say that NOT to boast.
I say that NOT out of pride.

I say that to avoid the wrath of the Religiously Intolerant People of my homeland / of our world.

Religiously Intolerant People has just become my newly coined phrase (seeing how it forms the apt acronym RIP). Apt, because RIP tend to rip to shreds the lives of anyone who does not conform to their provincial notions about femininity, masculinity and sexual behavior.

Yet, even though I am able to conform, I still have to worry about RIP jumping to the wrong conclusions re my lifestyle. I mean, how would the judgmental judge this old man in his mid-sixties, who has never been married / who has never fathered any children? Could they even find it conceivable that a heterosexual, who had never gotten over the heartbreak of unrequited teenage love, had simply given up in his search for Ms. Right?

I know my valid excuse sounds pathetic, but I am living proof that being a lifelong loser in love can happen.

And I do have living proof that the RIP’s ‘tude, as I’ve described it, really does exist.

Many summers ago, my Mom’s friend, M, paid us a midmorning visit. They’d first met in the hospital back in 1951 (when both were recovering from childbirth). While the three of us all sat down at the dining room table to sip on freshly brewed coffee and munch on yummy doughnuts, M, now the doting grandma, got to talking, glowingly, about her grandchildren. It was when she had asked Mom how it felt to have no grandchildren that our chat took a sudden turn for the worse. You see, I made the fatal error of making what I had deemed to be a harmless, ecologically valid remark, “Not to worry, considering our world’s overpopulation problem, who’d even miss the kids I never fathered.” WOW! You should’ve seen the instantaneous fury in her glowering eyes as she turned to face me… to sternly lecture me… to tear into me… “THAT’S NOT HOW GOD HAD INTENDED IT TO BE!” Her implication was that I’ll someday burn up in Hell because I was thumbing my nose at God’s “Be fruitful and multiply” edict… as chronicled in Genesis 1:28.

My point is that even a straight man is not immune from RIP’s harsh judgment and shaming tactics. And if I can experience that resultant sinking feeling that goes all the way down to my DNA, just imagine how much worse the RIP’s outrage intensifies when they rip into a person who does identify with any of the letters of that LGBTQIA acronym! Just imagine how much worse the RIP’s targeted victims feel!

In essence, the RIP’s Unholy War involves their viciously ridiculing, ostracizing, harassing and demeaning anyone who doesn’t buy into the concept of prolific procreation within the framework of traditional marriage. To be clear, it’s NOT my intent to disparage such convention. If it works for you, fine. However, we must also be willing to accept anyone who does not march in lockstep.

Let’s now focus a bit more on my moments ago usage of the word demeaning.

To demean even one human being… especially anyone of a differing gender identity / sexual orientation… demeans us all.

One would think that the Religiously Intolerant People… of all people… would [1] readily agree that our Creator has made us ALL in His own image and [2] realize that to vent their hatred toward anyone who identifies as LGBTQIA is to also spit such hatred right back at the face of God.