I was minding my own business Sunday afternoon when I began to receive tweets from a young lady named Melissa who was listening to a repeat, weekend broadcast of my Line of Fire radio program. This is our exchange, unedited except to correct punctuation and to combine multiple tweets into full sentences.
Because it so illustrates the standard “reasoning” that is so pervasive in our society today, and because it’s interesting to see what response you get when you turn the tables, I thought it was worth printing in full.
Melissa: Listening to your show while driving through Kentucky. Just had a few thoughts for you. Your stance on gay marriage is absurd. Exodus? Hope you haven't shaved your beard in a while, or you're just as wrong as gays. I've never heard of a doctor with such ignorance and inability to understand basic human rights as yourself.
Me: Thanks for listening and tweeting! And this answers your question [about shaving my beard, with a link to a short video on Levitical laws].
Melissa: If he wanted an entire earth of heterosexual people, gay people wouldn't exist. Love is love. One person with one person. Man or women. God made everyone EQUALLY. He loves all. Not only some people.
Me: Wow. You gave every standard statement in a few seconds. If you'd like to know the truth, I can help you. If not, God bless!
Me: BTW, why only one person with one person? Why are you so intolerant toward polyamorists? And if God didn't want people to hurt each other, why did He make pedophiles and murderers? And are you willing to deny a brother and sister the right to marry? They have cases in the courts now. Love is love, right? Again, if you want facts and truth -- and the real meaning of love -- I'm glad to help. If not, God bless!
Melissa: It's a choice to be a murderer. It's not a choice to be gay. Incest hurts children biologically. Gay people aren't hurting anyone.
Me: It's a choice to act on gay desires. Also, scientists say it isn't a choice to be a pedophile. Does that make it right? You said love is love. Why not polyamory? Please answer. And homosexual acts have higher health risks. That hurts people.
Melissa: I've been listening to your "truth" for an hour. I'm not here to be angry at you. It isn't worth it. You have your opinion but when gay rights are universal in this great nation, you will feel like the people who opposed the civil rights movement.
Me: You are 100% wrong, and I can prove it to you if you care. Or are you just one of those bigoted, hateful people? I'm really amazed to hear so much anger and bigotry and intolerance in your tweets.
Melissa: Ha I'm intolerant? I don't agree with polyamory. Not all people who believe in gay rights agree with polyamory.
Me: You said love is love!!
Melissa: Please keep your religion out of our courts. There is a separation between church and state. Aw too bad I'm getting out of range of this awful talk radio show.
Me: The separation of church and state is meant to keep the state out of the church! Wow!! Where did you go to school? Here's what is shocking. Every tweet of yours insulted me and presented falsehoods. You haven't answered one of my questions. You seem angry, bigoted, hateful, and intolerant -- as if someone brainwashed you and you can't think for yourself. Sad.
Melissa: I went to a catholic school for 10 years thanks. I'm not angry. No one brainwashed me. I went to a catholic school. If anything they tried to brainwash me the other way. I believe love is between two people. I answered that. I don't know if you know this but men and women can have sex just like gay men. It's just as dangerous. Happens all the time.
Me: But you repeat standard falsehoods that have zero basis in facts, and when I question you, you have no good answers. I hate religion, but I love Jesus. Please do answer my questions, OK? Love is love, right? Why only two people? That sounds bigoted and intolerant. Please answer me, OK? You say love is love, so why only two people?
Melissa: I have answered you. You just deny they are legitimate answers. You don't want to look from both sides.
Me: Love is love. You said it. Why deny three people who love each other the right to be together? Why deny two brothers?
Melissa: I did answer these questions. I'm done with answering them.
Me: I deeply care about gay people -- my brother-in-law was an ex-gay, BTW -- but your reasoning is deeply flawed. All I care about is loving God and loving my neighbor, and that's why I stand for marriage the way He intended. Anyway, I virtually never get into a twitter exchange like this, but I wanted to reach out to you.
Melissa: You don't need to reach out to me. You can go believing whatever you want. It's just an intolerant way. Have a good day.
Me: Well, you started the conversation, & you obviously don't believe "love is love" yourself. May God's true love touch you!
Melissa: It does touch me just like it does on the rest of the LGBTQ people. Thanks!
Me: His love transforms us -- just as it transformed me 41 years ago -- and His love comes with truth. That's the love you need!
Michael Brown holds a Ph.D. in Near Eastern Languages and Literatures from New York University. He is the author of 25 books, includingLine of Fire. Follow him at AskDrBrown on Facebook or @drmichaellbrown on Twitter.