Trans rights and living out my faith: Tolerance and love?
Let's start with this: Mark 12:31
"The second is this: 'Love your neighbor as yourself.' There is no commandment greater than these."
Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away.
I have often heard the argument that love does not equate tolerance. True. I can accept the argurment that you aren't required to agree that a behavior is acceptable in anyone. The Bible is very clear on what it finds acceptable and what it does not. However, even if you don't find a behavior acceptable to pratice yourself, we are still called not to judge and not to condemn. Jesus spent his time with the dregs of his society. He showed them unconditional love.
"Well fine Hannah, I'm not worried about the Trans person trying to pee, but perverts are going to use this as an excuse to assault our children!!"
Now we can talk about rape culture and really get to the heart of things! First lets look at some sexual assualt stats:
"Most rapes committed against women are committed by an intimate partner (spouse, boyfriend/girlfriend) or someone else they know (friend, family member, acquaintance)"
Approximately 28% of victims are raped by husbands or boyfriends, 35% by acquaintances, and 5% by other relatives. (Violence against Women, Bureau of Justice Statistics, U.S. Dept. of Justice, 1994)
Iowa State Law Has Prohibited Discrimination In Public Accommodations Since 2007. In 2007, the Iowa Civil Rights Act was expanded to prohibit discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity in public accommodations. [Iowa Civil Rights Commission, accessed 3/14/14]
Des Moines Police Department: "We Have Not Seen That." In an interview with Media Matters, Des Moines Police Department spokesman Jason Halifax stated that he hadn't seen cases of sexual assault related to the state's non-discrimination ordinance: We have not seen that. I doubt that's gonna encourage the behavior. If the behavior's there, [sexual predators are] gonna behave as they're gonna behave no matter what the laws are. [Phone interview, 3/13/14]
Experts in 12 states -- including law enforcement officials, government employees, and advocates for victims of sexual assault -- have debunked the right-wing myth that sexual predators will exploit transgender non-discrimination laws to sneak into women's restrooms, calling the myth baseless and "beyond specious.
I don't send my young children into public bathroom alone anyway!! However let's take a moment and continue to debunk some of these major fears here:
NDOs don’t make Illegal Behavior Legal It is illegal, regardless of whether an NDO is in place, to enter a bathroom to harm or harass people. When sexual predators do commit sexual assault in bathrooms, they don’t need to pretend to be transgender and exploit NDOs to do so. People commit also acts of voyeurism with our without NDOs in place, and don’t need to pretend to be transgender to do so either.
For sake of context, the FBI reports that over 84,000 rapes were reported in 2014alone, none of which exploited gender identity inclusive NDOs to commit sexual assault. To put the relative risk of people misusing NDOs in perspective another way statistically, five Americans have been shot by dogs in the past five years. Similarly, 450 people per year in the US are killed by falling out of bed.
"For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline." 2 timothy 1:7 Are you going to fall to fear? Are you going to let that stop you? As Christians we're called to live a life of love. How are we really living that out? When we treat people with such hate? This should not even be such a debate!! We are smarter than this, we are better than this. We should be above the fear-baiting and hate mongering.
Are you required to give approval to the rest of the world? Of course not!
Should you treat them like Jesus if you profess this faith? Think about it.