The Problem with ‘Straight Pride’

A few cities have recently talked of having ‘Straight Pride’ parades.  Whether their purpose is celebration or mockery I can’t say. Whatever the intention, I don’t know whether I could participate.

About 95% of the population is ‘straight’ by nature, and a few others by choice.  So ‘straight’ is the default nature of humankind. And it is worth noting that those who take ‘pride’ in being straight – neither identifying as homosexual nor Same Sex Attracted (SSA) –  are included in such clear biblical admonitions as this:  “All have sinned and fall from the glory of God” (Romans 3:23).

Meanwhile, quite a number of different lifestyles are included in the concept of ‘straight’.  Some are more fully approved by the Christian mind and by biblical standards than others.

  1. Monogamy preceded by celibacy.  This is the traditional lifestyle that Christians have always encouraged. And, until the 1960s, in the Western world, most non-Christians encouraged it as well.
  2. Serial monogamy.  Marriage – but not necessarily for a lifetime – has become commonplace, with periodic divorces and, as such, trading up to a better spouse.  Catholics have generally refused to recognize these remarriages as canon law, unless one had a ‘dispensation’, which was all too easy for influential people to get. Classical Protestants have generally condemned serial monogamy, but have recognized it as canon law when it was presented to them as a fait accompli.  I have known people who moved to the Catholic Church because of that legal loophole.
  3. Cohabitation.  In the West, this has become a common practice of non-believers prior to marriage, though marriages preceded by cohabitation have generally been less enduring than those not so preceded. Disapproved of by both Classical Catholics and Classical Protestants, there is allegedly a fair amount of variance as to how strictly the Communion Table is fenced against those practicing cohabitation.
  4. The hookup and bar scene, one night stands, etc.  This is disapproved of by Classical Christians, but remains quite difficult to enforce.  In the first phase of the Sexual Revolution – the Hugh Hefner phase – many single men came to think of sex as an entitlement.  The feminist backlash of more recent times has attempted at least to impose the ‘reality of informed consent’ by the female engaged in this practice.  Some feminist rhetoric, indeed, in its reaction to the male gaze and the wolf whistle, seems almost to approach the comment of Jesus:  “if you look on a woman with lust, you have committed adultery with her in your heart.”  The problem is that all too often, especially on the university campus, the crime of rape becomes a matter of ‘guilty until proven innocent’.  It’s been about two generations since To Kill A Mockingbird came out, and we have forgotten that in the old days black men lived in fear of rape accusations by white women.
  5. Formal or informal polygyny – in which two or more women share a husband.  Many, and not just Darwinists, argue that apart from taught morality, this is the default state of humankind.  A few alpha men will monopolize most of the women; the rest of the males must content themselves with being ‘incels’ – involuntary celibates – or else resort to prostitutes.  Aaron Renn, a Christian writer, in one of his Masculinist newsletters, declared that almost half of males, but most women in history, had never reproduced or had children.  This system offends the political correctness of the Post-Christian West just as much as it offends Christians.  It seems to me that the Post-Christian West has selected some things it likes from Christendom, and rejected others, and often has exaggerated the parts of Christendom it likes to a ridiculous degree.  But, then again, Aristotle and Plato would probably say to Aquinas, and other philosophers of the Christendom Age, that Christendom has selected parts of pagan philosophy it liked, and exaggerated them to a ridiculous degree.

So you can see that I, and many other biblically-rooted Christians, would have a hard time celebrating all these various forms of ‘straightness’ without any kind of differentiation.  On the other hand, it can be argued that in some ways, homosexuality is more objectionable than any of these, simply because it is farther removed from ‘nature’.  This may lie in the category of things that are true but not necessarily of any practical value.

A man who struggles against his desire for gay porn deals with its attraction pretty much in the same way as a straight man who is trying to avoid straight porn; I doubt that the person of gay inclination has a harder row to hoe in dealing with lust than does his non-gay friend.  Some of the more absurd forms of ‘reparative therapy’ have been given up; anyhow, we biblical Christians don’t really want struggling people to adopt any kind of ‘straight’ other than the first one on my list.

At the same time, in my opinion, it is desirable that people of homosexual inclination, who don’t have the gift of singleness, should marry a person of the opposite sex, and that they should only marry one such person.  Their path to a marriage will be a different one – at least in a culture that doesn’t do arranged marriages.  And it will be far more challenging than the experience of those of straight inclination.

I hear my own denomination, the Presbyterian Church in America (PCA), is currently being roiled by a controversy about what celibate, non-practicing ‘gays’ ought to do.  I’ll venture my own opinion; they should not be in denial about their inclination, but admit to it [while not necessarily broadcasting it all over].  Likewise, they should not claim a gay ‘identity’.  I think this is reasonable.  In any case, straight or not, I seriously doubt that any of today’s myriad sexual definitions is able to prevent sincere seekers from receiving the good news of Jesus’ transforming power.

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