Dear Mr George Carey,
I write as one of those many hundreds of sodomites Christians are so fond of talking about. I use the term advisedly as, although, I personally have never sodomized anybody myself (or would even want to in any other but fantasy terms), I am given to understand that it makes it easier for Christians to handle the delicate issue in a sensitive, thoughtful way if I use such terminology. No doubt were I, in fact, an “AIDS carrying rampantly promiscuous child molester” it would make their lives even easier for them as well. Sadly I have to confess that aside from a couple of casual encounters and a lot of heartache caused by falling in love with people incapable of understanding my affections, that I am largely celibate (though hopeful). I do hope this does not upset you too much. It certainly seems to have no effect on how your brethren see me anyway.
Anyway I am writing simply to remind you that you have retired from public office now and that you should perhaps curl up in a chair with a copy of Eusebius, pipe and slippers before making a further nonsense of yourself in public.
You claim that Christians are being persecuted and discriminated against because of their beliefs. Surely you mean that some people have been subject to negative court decisions because their actions in regard to those beliefs were profoundly discriminatory. Such as the relationships guidance official who refused to handle gay couples because his holy book told him they were evil and that it rubs off if you go within thirty feet of them? I feel pretty sure that the position defined by Voltaire about how somebody believing the Pope to be the Antichrist should not be subject to the laws of the land and that somebody who, based on that belief, murders somebody should be is still a part of our unwritten constitution in the UK. It was the last time I looked anyway.
What I find so puzzling in your latest outpourings is the fact that you seem to say, on the one hand, that discriminating against people on the grounds of their beliefs is wrong (with which I agree totally) and yet, on the other, you defend their rights to discriminate against people like me. What exactly is it that makes it acceptable for certain kinds of bigotry to remain respectable? The literal belief that the world was made in seven days does not automatically qualify one for spiritual authority after all, more likely it would qualify for a place in a local mental hospital. However I am prepared to tolerate the belief itself as I am quite a broad minded chappie with an interest in mythical anthropology.
Looking at the examples you give here of crass discrimination I can hardly see any case here that would merit the people involved either hanging themselves (Jamey Rodemeyer (14) from his garden swing set, Phillip Parker (14) from his bedroom light fitting) taking overdoses (Jamie Hubley (15)) or even shooting themselves (Asher Brown (13)). So where is this gross inhumanity, this shocking persecution you speak of? Where are all these Evangelical suicides? Where are the bodies of those unable to wear crucifixes at work? After all you state that the persecution is just as bad as it is for homosexuals, so please let’s see some corpses here. The fact is there aren’t any, are there? Unlike the nonsense people of your ilk spout, the body count is minimal.
The problem here, Mr Carey, is that not only are you making statements that are patently untrue and exaggerated but you are alienating many people who would be sympathetic to your cause. I, for example, believe in marriage. I believe it to be a healthy stabilizing force in society, a rite of passage marking some form of personal development/achievement, a symbolic gesture of mutual giving and devotion, a much needed oasis of stability in a world of drifting shadows. Which is why I believe it should be open for gay people as well as straight people. It will provide gay kids with something to aspire to in their lives, it will grant their lives a social under-girding which, at the moment, they are obliged to find for themselves in the face of hostility not only from people in the street but, damnably, from people like you in pulpits who really should know better about such things as the parable of the unforgiving servant.
You speak as though marriage is and has been some kind of solid bedrock throughout the centuries but even a cursory glance at the writings of the Church Fathers indicates that position to be a sham. You no longer speak or preach about “Conjugal Purity” being the Christian ideal, you allow for non-procreational sex within marriage, both of which would have been seen as being heretical by the early church. Likewise marriage is no longer simply viewed as a business contract where virginity is prized as being of greater value in terms of a dowry and we no longer live in a country where ( according to Montesquieu’s “Spirit Of The Laws”) seven year old girls are obliged to choose their husbands. So, on what real grounds are you making your objections?
The argument from biblical authority is redundant. Indeed, if that was to be the sole measure of ethics then slavery would not have been abolished in the first place. The argument from history is, as I have just demonstrated, equally fallacious and unsupportable. So where are these objections coming from? What exactly are you so scared of?
What about the argument from justice, truth and mercy? The argument that says that everybody deserves to have a fulfilling life except if their actions cause direct harm to others (like Christians do to children like the Rodemeyers and Hubleys of the world)? What about the argument that states that any ethical position that causes more misery, pain, and needless negativity in people than happiness is simply not worthy of being upheld?
Mr Carey, please wake up and smell the coffee. The world has changed an awful lot since the 4th century. Appeasing the prejudices of middle England will only carry you so far. The rest will happen of its own accord. Go to “Wipeout Homophobia On Facebook” and look at all those photos of happy gay couples who have tied the knot after years of living together unrecognized and persecuted by people of your ilk. Then google the youtube videos of Jamey Rodemeyer and Jamie Hubley and watch the beautiful little lads your kind drove to suicide (and still are) and if, after that, you still believe what you hold as being right is justified and ethical then I can only say I am glad you are now in retirement.