Dogmatists accept, as incontrovertible truth, religious doctrine regardless of evidence to the contrary and the authoritative opinions of others.
At Witherspoon Institute’s pretentious blog, Cory D. Higdon has authored A Contest of Civility: The Stakes of the Battle over the Equality Act. We are informed that:
Cory Higdon is a Ph.D. student at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary and serves as the Director of Theological Research in the Office of the President.
Much of his polemic is pointless surplusage. Yet he makes an interesting admission:
But is the argument about the lack of religious freedom protections enough? I think Ryan Anderson is right: religious freedom cannot be the only end sought by conservatives and especially for Christians. “The answer,” Anderson argues, “isn’t for our side to forfeit the fight about the truth by pleading only to be left alone.” Indeed, there are far more egregious consequences of the Equality Act than its lack of protections for religious freedom: it celebrates and legitimizes a way of life that is fundamentally destructive, both on an individual and societal level. There are serious matters at stake in the constellation of ethical issues connected to the Equality Act. Again, legal jargon is never just jargon. Codified laws flow from a worldview, and in the case of the Equality Act, the undergirding worldview is antithetical to human flourishing.
The imbecile has not only hung a neon “I am an ignorant bigot” sign around his neck, he is proud of his ignorance. More importantly, he makes a compelling case for why the Equality Act is so important.
What Mr. Higdon is essentially saying is that his religious judgment — his disapproval — should be sufficient to enable discrimination. Also, it is absurd sophistry to claim that a nondiscrimination law “celebrates” anything.
On top of that Higdon is claiming that to discriminate is is to be ethical because those discriminated against are people he disapproves of due to ancient chronicles. Fortunately, most Christians disagree with Higdon. There is nothing ethical about prejudice.
The kid (an intellectual adolescent) is in need of some secular guidance. To suggest that natural variances of gender identity and sexual orientation are destructive to the individual and to society is spectacularly stupid.
Donald J. Trump, for example is self-destructive and destructive to society. To the best of my knowledge Trump is heterosexual. So were Ted Bundy and Timothy McVeigh.
In fact, years before McVeigh killed 168 people, members of the Christian militia group The Covenant, The Sword, and the Arm of the Lord (CSA), including founder James Ellison and Richard Snell plotted to park “a van or trailer in front of the Federal Building and blow it up with rockets detonated by a timer.”
Some conservative Christians have believed that it is “ethical” — if not necessary — to murder abortion providers. An anti-choice zealot, Eric Rudolph, murdered two innocent people and injured 100 others in the Olympic Park bombing.
Nevertheless, I am not suggesting that heterosexual people, or even Christians, are inherently evil. What I am saying is that we do not have to look at LGBTQ persons to find people who are destructive to society.
The notion that people Mr. Higdon disapproves of are self-destructive is ludicrous. If success is any measure of service (in contrast to destruction) then Mr. Higdon fails to consider that the CEO of, arguably, the world’s largest corporation (Apple) is a gay man.
Dishonesty and prejudice are two of the most toxic influences on society. Higdon is relying upon, and promoting, the idiotic idea that sexual orientation and gender identity are whimsical choices. That is a lie. It is, well, prejudice based upon a dishonest presumption.
His is a very lengthy jeremiad but I want to quote just one more passage from Higdon:
That is, perhaps, one of the more pressing and pervasive threats of the Equality Act: the freedom to think, to be offensive, to state publicly without equivocation or fear of retribution that transgenderism, as an example, is destructive. The editorial board of The Washington Post suggests that such views are permitted, but they must remain private—they cannot, for the sake of human dignity, have a place in the public square. Cancel culture devours dissent, as evidenced by Amazon’s removal of Ryan Anderson’s book against transgenderism, When Harry Became Sally. The Equality Act would not merely alter legal code. It would engender and nourish a burgeoning assault on any who publicly dissent from the new secular orthodoxy.
“Transgenderism” is comparable to “Christianism.” Cory D. Higdon is profoundly confused. Higdon is conflating what is socially unacceptable with what would be prohibited by law if and when the Equality Act goes into effect.
A “new secular orthodoxy” does not exist but Higdon needs to define his enemies. Polite society does not tolerate homophobia and transphobia because those prejudices are articles of ignorance.
Once one comes to terms with the overwhelming consensus of science, that sexuality is not a choice, it becomes increasingly difficult to be prejudiced. Moreover, those ancient chronicles say many — many — things that are not tolerated as society becomes better informed.
One of those things, for example, was the condoning of slavery. The Bible and so-called “natural law” were used to justify making human beings into property. Polite society does not accept slavers. That’s nothing new and it’s not part of some ambiguous philosophy or doctrine.
As for Mr. Anderson, the simple fact is that Ryan T. Anderson is demonstrably wrong about transgender people and the treatment of gender dysphoria. Anderson promotes bigotry with bullshit. Amazon chose not to be complicit.
It is patently obvious that Anderson was defending the teachings of the Catholic Church. He attempts to defy medical science with twisted logic and selective observation. Anderson is not a victim — Anderson is a victimizer!
Mr. Higdon requires nearly 3,000 words and nearly 18,000 characters in an attempt to defend himself from due criticism. His diatribe includes a substantial — yet largely irrelevant — history of conformity and nonconformity.
I have always stated that I learn the most from people with whom I disagree. That is dependent upon only one thing: Intellectual honesty. I can learn nothing from Cory D. Higdon beyond the nature of prejudice based upon religious literalism.
Higdon does not seem to realize that he has every right to disapprove of others. Yet, expressing disapproval is not a religious duty. Some means of expressing disapproval (like refusing service) are unacceptable in a civil society. You will recall that the title of Higdon’s diatribe presumes that he is civil and that LGBTQ people are uncivil. Seriously?
I often wonder what these people would do if they have an LGBTQ child. My wonderment invariably changes to something that scares the shit out of me to contemplate.