Slate‘s resident gay hysteric Mark Joseph Stern, who could find the homo-hate in a box of Raisinets, is glad the Mets lost the world series, because, yep, Ha-a-a-a-a-te!. The Mets’ Daniel Murphy is a Christian who does not morally approve of homosexuality, and once said so in a fairly modest, irenic way, quoted here by Stern:
I disagree with his lifestyle. I do disagree with the fact that Billy is a homosexual. That doesn’t mean I can’t still invest in him and get to know him. I don’t think the fact that someone is a homosexual should completely shut the door on investing in them in a relational aspect. Getting to know him. That, I would say, you can still accept them but I do disagree with the lifestyle, 100 percent.
… Maybe, as a Christian, that we haven’t been as articulate enough in describing what our actual stance is on homosexuality. We love the people. We disagree the lifestyle. That’s the way I would describe it for me. It’s the same way that there are aspects of my life that I’m trying to surrender to Christ in my own life. There’s a great deal of many things, like my pride.
Plainly, the Mets home run king is Babe Hitler.
Seriously, though, here is a Christian who has a moral objection to homosexuality, but who says nobody, least of all himself, is perfect, and he is willing to reach out and befriend gays. That’s not good enough for Stern, who demands that Murphy be punished. Why? Because he’s a killer. Stern remarks:
Every year, hundreds, perhaps thousands, of gay and bisexual kids kill themselves precisely because they are pummeled with homophobic ideas like these. Some overdose on their parents’ pills; some slit their wrists; some hang themselves or put bullets in their brain. LGB kids are between two and four times more likely to try to kill themselves than straight kids. Every episode of LGB victimization, including verbal harassment, increases the likelihood of self-harm 2.5 times on average, according to the CDC.
When gay kids read comments like Murphy’s—and then see that the MLB deemed them acceptable—they’re liable to conclude that they really are twisted and aberrant, that society really won’t accept them for who they are. These toxic feelings could only be exacerbated by a cult of Murphy, a growing fan base that lauds him as the Mets’ savior. To see an anti-gay player be not just tolerated, but celebrated—even by those who would otherwise rebuke his prejudice—would be profoundly dispiriting. Even I, a fairly thick-skinned gay adult, was stunned by the celerity with which otherwise tolerant baseball fans forgave his anti-gay disparagements once he started hammering homers.
Mark Joseph Stern is “fairly thick skinned” like Saran Wrap is the walls of the Kremlin. He goes on to say that he’s glad the Mets lost, to punish this thought criminal, and Stern hopes for Murphy’s career to implode:
But I’m delighted to see Murphy’s star come crashing down so publicly. Now a free agent, Murphy’s stock just plummeted, and his name will be whispered in disappointment rather than trumpeted with glee. Murphy’s horrifying performance, his downfall on the field, likely had nothing to do with his noxious personal prejudice. And yet, in some small way, it felt like justice.
Because justice. That’s how Social Justice Warriors roll.
See, this is why I keep telling Millennial Evangelicals that all the winsomeness in the world won’t make them love you. There is no way in the eyes of many LGBT folks and their allies to hold dissenting views in good faith. You may believe that it is wrong to reduce gay people to their sexual desires, and thus to dehumanize them, but many of them believe it is “justice” to reduce orthodox Christians and other moral traditionalists to their beliefs about homosexuality, and to judge them accordingly.
Thus do we pathologize dissent, on the road to criminalizing it. The reader who sent this item in writes:
So. To tolerate the traditional view of homosexuality, which prevailed until two minutes ago, is a violent offense. You cannot just sit there and listen to it. You MUST “reprimand” him. Not doing so is to render his violent claims reasonable and harmless. While we all know that they are unreasonable and harmful.
What if a Christian wrote that he was glad to see a sports team lose a national championship because the team includes an openly gay star athlete, and we cannot have people cheering for a homosexual? Would we not think that person was a petulant narcissist, and quite possibly a crackpot bigot? Could that person even hope to get a column like that published in a respectable publication?
Of course not. But there is Mark Joseph Stern, in Slate, where I bet there’s not a single person in the newsroom who has the slightest idea how unbelievably offensive that opinion is, and how nasty and repellent it would be if things were flipped, and a Christian said it about a homosexual sports figure.
I don’t know whether I find it more troubling to contemplate the backlash to this aggression, or to contemplate the likelihood that there will be no backlash, but that society will come to agree that Christians like Daniel Murphy are thought criminals who do not deserve to have careers in athletics.
— Mark Joseph Stern (@mjs_DC) November 2, 2015
@mjs_DC Of course. Who cares?
— Rod Dreher (@roddreher) November 3, 2015
I don’t even care if a ballplayer says he doesn’t care for Christians. I might think, “What a jerk,” but the more important question is, “Can he hit?” People are more than the sum of their opinions. If his opinion was, “Hitler and Stalin were a couple of swell guys,” well, okay, that’s a big problem. But this is not that, and neither, by a thousand million miles, is what Daniel Murphy said.