Tuesday, May 18, 2010

George and the Rentboy

SKEPTIC:  Oh dear - another high-profile, anti-gay crusader has been busted for being gay. George Reker, 61, a Baptist minister and a co-founder (along with James Dobson) of the moralistic Family Research Council, was caught coming back from a 10-day trip to Europe with a gay prostitute that he hired from a website called rentboy.com. After the news got splashed all over the media, ol' George dug deep and relied on his skills as a professional liar to come up with these doozies:

LIE #1 - He said he didn't realize until half-way through the trip that he had hired a prostitute. LIE #2 - He said he only hired him to help him carry his luggage. LIE #3 - He said he spent "a great deal of time" trying to convince the prostitute to give up his gay lifestyle and come to Jesus. His latest attempt at damage control is to point out that Jesus hung out with prostitutes, too.

Now you're perfectly free to believe his lies, but I'm gonna give you the benefit of the doubt and assume that you're not that naive.

George was also on the board of directors of NARTH (he has recently resigned), an organization dedicated to praying the gay out of this world. But I'm guessing he can kiss his career as an "expert" on all things gay goodbye. No more testifying in court for $87,000 against the right of gays to adopt kids. No more preaching against the evils of gayness. Probably no more preaching at all. This guy is gonna make Ted Haggard look like an alter boy (okay, maybe that's a bad analogy!)

PREACHER: I think that Dr. Rekers exercised very poor judgment by contacting a male prostitute in the way he did. Christians are to avoid even giving the appearance of evil. He messed the situation up even more by the lies you mention. (Lie #1 and #2 are substatiated, but lie #3 is not. In order to prove it a lie you would need to have had access to what they did in private.) 

This scenario reminds me of something I heard about in college. Two Christian guys were meeting in one of their rooms in the dorm in college. They were meeting for Bible study and prayer. However, since they didn't have girlfriends and weren't active in the dating scene, some of the partying scene guys in the dorm concluded that they were gay, that their regular private times together were engaged in sex.  They cleared that up by meeting in a public place for the rest of the semester, so that everyone could see what they were really doing. 

If Dr. Rekers had the foresight, he might have videoed all of his private time with the male prostitute. My point is, when people accuse others of sexual activity in private, it reveals more about the accuser than the accused. And, since you really believe that fulfilling the sex drive according to ones sexual orientation is necessary for true happiness and should never be suppressed, Dr. Rekers would have no doubt done just that, finally succumbing to his sexual orientation that he had been suppressing for years.  

SKEPTIC: I'm guessing that George is glad he DIDN'T videotape his encounters with the rentboy, especially after the graphic descriptions of what occurred. 

But you must be concerned at the damage these people are doing to the credibility of the whole Christian anti-gay argument. Why should anyone take seriously anything that these people have to say on the matter? Rekers, Haggard, Craig, Foley and the rest were not your run-of-the-mill Christians - they were leaders of the movement and men of great power. If even they can't change their sexual orientation, how can you make the argument that sexual orientation is something that is chosen and can be changed? 

I will admit to some feelings of schadenfreude, but I also have a certain amount of pity for Rekers. He is, after all, a victim of his own upbringing and theology. If I may engage in a bit of pop psychology, he is probably filled with self-loathing and guilt about his sexual orientation and has overcompensated by aggressively opposing civil rights for the gay community. Now he's paying the price for the naked hypocrisy that is the natural result of such actions.   

PREACHER: I would be critical too of Rekers (for hiring a male prostitute) for what was obviously a bad slip of judgment. But to call him a hypocritical gay-basher who is actually a closet gay is blatant gossip. There is no way to prove that unless one can supernaturaly read his mind. And you would claim that would be impossible, right? Those who spread such gossip are showing more about there own lack of character than of the one whom they accuse.  

SKEPTIC: So let me get this straight...

Rekers has the rentboy sign a contract that requires him to give him daily massages in the nude. These massages included what Rekers called "the long stroke," which was a motion across his butt, thighs, and penis. This is the account from the rentboy and Rekers doesn't deny it. So how exactly is this gossip? Are you seriously maintaining that Rekers isn't gay? He hired the guy from a freaking gay prostitute website!! He says he's going to sue for defamation, and I hope he does - because I want him to have to spout his bullshit in a court of law. But he never will. If he's smart, he'll just shut up and fade into oblivion. 

PREACHER: If I didn't know any better I would think that you hate Rekers.

SKEPTIC: What I hate is blatant hypocrisy and attempts to find excuses for it because he's a "man of God" - especially when he's hurt a whole group of people with his attempts to deny them their civil rights.

PREACHER: So, you have expressed your opinion about Rekers. Now, exactly what is your point that you want to express to me re: the gay lifestyle through your comments about this man? Are you trying to say something about sexual orientation that you don' think I already know? 

SKEPTIC: Nope, I think I understand your position pretty well now: Jesus Good - Gay Bad.

PREACHER: No. you don't understand my position. I believe that a particlular sexual orientation is neither good nor bad in itself. It is only when that sexual orientation is expressed in an immoral way (according to Biblical standards) that it becomes bad.

SKEPTIC: Right. It's okay to be gay as long as you don't have sex. That's a bit like saying "Sure, it's okay to be a Christian as long as you don't go to church." 

But look, here's my radical thought: let's recognize that we live in the 21st-century - not the first century. And we live in a democratic secular society - not a Christian theocracy. America is a melting pot of different races, religions, and sexual orientations. But we are all people who deserve to be happy and deserve to treated equally when it comes to our basic rights as citizens. Christians should live their lives according to their principles, but they should stop insisting that the rest of the world has to adhere to those principles as well - especially when those same Christians are leading double lives.

PREACHER:  Secularists seem to always forget that they owe the freedom that they enjoy from a Christian world view that values all men as equal in the sight of their Creator (even if they act and believe a lie)As a matter of fact it is the only social context in which they can flourish. Only as long as they are still influenced by that way of valuing, that they owe to Christianity, will men continue to treat those that they disagree with with respect.  When the assumption of man as created in the image of his Creator and therefore of intrinsic value is thrown out, suddenly we are left with no reason to value the dignity of other humans any longer.  That is why Joseph Stalin chose to exterminate millions of people he considered as problematic. Secularists assume that their position is neutral. It is not. It is only another world view in competition with others to be in control of human society.  And, it doesn't really have a very large following. 

It is interesting what is happening in the bastions of secularism such as France and England. The fastest growing religion and world view in those areas is now Islam. Many experts predict that Islam will be the dominant religion in Europe within a generation.  I don't think I need to remind the skeptic about how Sharia law treats gay people. I suppose there will always be a minority of the population that feels a same-sex attraction, however I think that the gay rights movement as we see it today (demanding "civil rights" to call their lifestyle good and acceptable) is a passing fad that will fade into oblivion.  

SKEPTIC: Civil rights has nothing to do with "calling their lifestyle good and acceptable." It has everything to do with giving them the same rights that every other citizen enjoys, including the right to marry, the right to not be discriminated against in hiring or housing, hospital visitation rights, inheritance rights, and much more. These are rights that make a real difference in people's lives. They hardly constitute a "passing fad." 

And I'm not sure that you want to brag about the fact that Christian homophobia isn't as bad as Islamic homophobia. You may be right, but it just proves that religionists, in general, bound to their ancient books as they are, have a lot tougher time than secularists accepting people for who they are.

Also, I don't accept the notion that secularists owe their freedom to Christianity. That strikes me as more than a little arrogant. The Christian worldview "values all men as equal in the sight of their Creator?" That certainly didn't seem to be the case in the Old Testament, which didn't appear to have any problem with slavery.


  1. Rights presuppose the value and dignity of each human being. That value is given to each man by his authoritative Creator. Secularism is a world view that denies that Creator. Therefore, secularism cannot bestow on a human being that value. Secularism cannot tell Joseph Stalin that he was wrong in exterminating millions of humans because it has no moral authority.

  2. It seems to me that secularists have a lot of trouble accepting religionists. Since they have no moral authority, the religionists probably won't ever take them very seriously.

  3. Skeptic says: "..they were leaders of the movement and men of great power."

    and that is why they have to be 'whiter than white'; but, as is the case so often with the 'great and the good', we're supposed to do as they say not do as they do. rank hypocrisy.

    Preacher says: "..a Christian world view that values all men as equal.."

    quite, and women are a mere inconvenience, eh??

    why is it, Preacher Paul, that in all three Abrahamic religions women get such a raw deal??

    given their (Christian, Muslim, Jew) beliefs in all male power plus a 'god the father' teachings, I'm not surprised at the number of 'closet' homosexuals amongst their ranks.


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