Sunday, August 19, 2012

Droppings from the Catholic Birdcage: "There Is an Urgent Need to Grade Various Levels of Homosexual Activities"

At National Catholic Reporter, reader Tom ATK takes Sr. Maureen Fiedler to task for, well, everything under the sun.  It seems her "taxonomy" of homosexuality and homosexual sin is not clear.  Plus, she's a "white, Anglo-Saxon post Victorian 60’s raised liberal arts academic."  Or if she doesn't fit that taxonomy herself, she's clearly in cahoots with those post-Victorian 60's-raised oddities.

She's also in cahoots with "ex hippies" who now control the economy and Madison Avenue marketing and who want us to believe that "genitals are strictly JUST for fun" and who also don't recognize the true facts of biology 101: that male and female genitals are created for reproductive purposes dictated by biology.  And so Sr. Fiedler engages in Orwellian "overloading" of language and Orwellian "doublespeak" to "high-jack" the term "marriage" for the gays.

And a side effect of all this Orwellian highjacking by the gays is somehow (Tom ATK doesn't quite spell out how the gays are killing babies) the killing of 1.2 million babies in utero.  And the gays just don't care.  

Here's the point to which Tom ATK is winding around with the preceding analysis:

There is an urgent need to grade various levels of homosexual activities using Aquinas’s Summa taxonomy of sin as template, for example. 

An "urgent need," you understand.  The need to "grade various levels of homosexual activities using Aquinas's Summa taxonomy" is urgent.

For Tom ATK, at least, the need to the grade, to set in place and enforce a taxonomy of gay sin, is urgent.  And that urgency fascinates me: what possesses men (since it's always and predictably men who issue these urgent calls for defining, classifying, taxonomizing, and, above all, keeping gay folks in their places): what possesses some men, what eats so hard at the souls of some men, that they just positively itch to create taxonomies that let the gay folks (and characteristically other men who happen to be gay) know precisely where they stand in the divine order of things?

Since that's what these taxonomies are all about, isn't it?  They're about creating a fictional divine order that places heterosexual men on top, women beneath them, and the gays down the ladder from the normal.  (As an aside, they've also for centuries been about race as well: white heterosexual men are on top, white women beneath them, and then the gays and people of color occupy the lower rungs.  And this taxonomic system still exercises baleful influence in the thinking of many American churchgoers, despite their dishonest claims to the contrary.)

All this has been in my thoughts this past week after I read the response of a married heterosexual Catholic man to the rather tortured musings of another married heterosexual Catholic man at the Commonweal blog site, about how, when, under what strict and almost impossibly unimaginable conditions the bishops of the Catholic church could ever imagine civil marriage for same-sex couples as a permissible lesser of two evils.

So much energy expended in imagining the lives of gay folks, classifying and ordering the lives of gay folks--especially the lives of other men who happen to be gay.  What might happen to the world and to the churches--which are bleeding members in droves as heterosexual men twiddle their thumbs about these impossible-to-imagine eventualities of full inclusion of gay folks in the world--if those same heterosexual men who are so fixated on their blessed rage to order the lives of gay men and women began to turn that obsessive moral focus on themselves?

And began to ask who died and made them gods?  And who has anointed them to create the blessed order of the universe?

And what their own sins and shortcomings might be, even as they mull over and taxonomize the sins they imagine their gay brothers and sisters guilty of, which demand "urgent" response?

I suspect that a few of us who are gay might have some taxonomies of our own to suggest for those heterosexual men who imagine themselves divinely charged with maintaining divine order in the world.  And our moral taxonomies might begin with the damage that those who fatuously assume God has placed them in charge of things almost always do to themselves and others because of their misguided belief that they're demigods.

And, quite specifically, with the damage done to churches like my Catholic church when heterosexual folks who imagine they have been placed in charge of things by God still can't create openings in their closed, parochial, increasingly inconsequential and narrow conversations about divine order and human sexuality, while droves of their brother and sister Catholics are exiting the church, because we're sick of the toxic nonsense.  And of the absurd pretensions of those controlling the conversations to represent normalcy, order, and the center of things.

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