religious right

Christina Engela's picture

Blasphemous Rumors

I know I have been quiet lately, but it's just because I've taken the weekend off. Honest. Rumors of my being raptured are greatly exaggerated - in fact, I am still here, and so is my underwear drawer, which still needs tidying. Damn.

I am typing this article on the morning of Sunday 22 2011. I am still here, and so is the house I live in - and the cars parked outside tell me the businesses across the road are doing their usual booming breakfasting business. The city around me is not on fire and there haven't been any tsunamis during the night. My mother woke up this morning, as usual, and shuffled past my door - so I knew she was still here. All is right with the world then.

As I expected, the May 21 "rapture" was a bust. Partly I was a little disappointed, because I had accepted invitations to several events on Facebook, such as the "Post-Rapture Party" and the "Post-Rapture Looting", which I admit, I had been looking forward to a little. In fact, I already had been eying those fancy cars some of the folks from Harvest and Word of Faith drive around in - unless they took to selling or giving them away in anticipation of being "raptured" of course. Hehe. I can only imagine the arguments to follow.

Be that as it may, it is now May 22, and nope, no Rapture. Some of you, a very few, may wonder what this "Rapture" is supposed to be. My mother, who has been a Christian her whole life, is one of them. Simply put, the Rapture is supposed to be the start of the end times, when all the "good Christians" vanish from the Earth, cars and planes crash with nobody to fly them, to be taken to God, Jesus, Heaven etc. People just disappear, leaving behind perhaps no more that a set of empty clothes and maybe a half-eaten hot-dog - which has prompted some folks to attempt some interesting pranks!

The Rapture supposedly leads up to the rise of the "anti-Christ" and ultimately the end of the world - because, as everyone knows, civilization simply could not exist without the Conservatives.
Christina Engela's picture

What Makes A Fundamentalist?


It seems to me that I often ruffle the feathers of Christian supporters, friends and relatives with my articles on human rights, gay rights, feminism and religious fundamentalism.

In speaking out against the frequent attacks on human rights which undeniably comes predominantly out of the Christian fundamentalist quarter, it seems that spelling out the FUNDAMENTALIST or EXTREMIST part is not helping much. People just seem to see the world "Christian" and jump to the conclusion that "oh, she's hammering the Christians again. She must really hate them."

People accuse me of being anti-Christian, anti-God and anti-religious freedom - which makes no sense to me whatever. I am none of those things - and oddly enough, the people accusing me of these things are often NOT EVEN FUNDAMENTALISTS! Yet, for some reason, THEIR feelings are hurt and they are somehow offended by the undeniable truth that some people who claim to be Christians just aren't very nice people, and are doing some really unpleasant things and then blaming it on their deity or religious teachings.

Can't you read, people? Or does this misunderstanding arise because you don't understand the difference between a Christian - an ordinary, practicing Christian, and a Christian FUNDAMENTALIST?
Christina Engela's picture

Community Building

Recently I wrote about cohesion in our pink community, and over the weekend I was again faced with the exact opposite. Some trans-women seem to feel that I have been remiss in campaigning for transgender rights and focusing only on gay rights. They feel, as I do - that there are some rather prominent advocacy groups, some of them advertising that they stand for all GLBTI rights, some not - and that these groups are abandoning trans people.

A prime examples of this is the ENDA (Employee Non Discrimination Act) in the USA, which has failed to pass in the past - and from which transgender rights were conveniently removed by some of our gay allies in order to see that the act had a "better chance" of passing. Hmm. I have to point out that (duh) this is not the act of an ally. The dust around this issue still has not settled, and I wait with bated breath to see how it goes down.

Another infamous example of exclusion and working against community unity is the UK group "Stonewall" which deigns to take the name of that holy grail of GLBTI rights and sullies it by excluding the transgender and intersex communities, and catering only for the benefit of gay rights. They do a very good job of gay rights advocacy, kudos to them for that - but shame on them for not caring a damn about the trans and intersex people - and refusing even to provide them a counseling service, information, or even to stand up for their rights while standing up for their own! Stonewall UK is a large group with a loud voice, and the T and I in GLBTI are left to fend for themselves. I am frequently disgusted whenever I am reminded of this by their one-dimensional advertising and informational campaigns.
Christina Engela's picture

It's A Small World, After All

When Uganda tabled its Bill which would effectively have instituted the death penalty for homosexuality and a pink genocide, many countries applied great pressure to Uganda to drop the Bill. So far this Bill has been put on hold, yet in Uganda gay people still face an existing law which prescribes a 14-year prison term simply for being gay - just as in Malawi and several other countries.

Malawi has just this week rewarded a gay couple with the maximum prison term for loving each other - 14 years hard labor, a potential - and even likely death sentence in such a prison. The world has begun to apply pressure on Malawi because of this human rights abuse, but the question remains - how much pressure will they apply, and what will happen if Malawi doesn't budge?

Will the outcome of this issue encourage other African states to say "oh well, Malawi didn't give the West what they wanted, they didn't give in - and nothing happened to them. They're still getting aid"? Will this encourage Uganda to pass the Bill and thumb their noses at their donors as if their bark is worse than their bite - as one does to a dog without teeth?

Gay people in Africa are living in fear. And why should gay people in Africa not be afraid? Today it is illegal to be gay in aproximately 38 countries in Africa, with many countries applying lengthy jail terms as well as a measure of draconian homphobia in laws and society. Homosexuality is illegal in Zambia, as is the case in Malawi and most other African countries. The only country on the continent of Africa which has laws protecting the human and civil rights of sexual minorities, is South Africa - a country whose government, has to date not once spoken out against human rights abuses and violations in any other African state - and which continues to do business with and even to support their governments.
Syndicate content
Powered by Drupal, an open source content management system