The Church of England - - LETTERS -

Sir, Speak­ing as a52-year-old gay man who came to terms with his sex­u­al­ity over 30 years ago, your leader ‘The in­con­ve­nient truth of sex­ual flu­id­ity’ is as­ton­ish­ing in its ig­no­rance and its hos­til­ity. The au­thor has clearly lit­tle idea about the re­al­ity of the lives of LGBT peo­ple and there’s a point at which pub­lish­ing such opin­ions over and over again just be­comes in­sult­ing and rude.

I would like to point out that the ‘B’ in LGBT is not by any means a new ad­di­tion - so the fact of the flu­id­ity of hu­man sex­u­al­ity is cer­tainly not a newly dis­cov­ered ‘in­con­ve­nient truth’ as the au­thor so ridicu­lously as­serts.

The Church of Eng­land’s wide­spread at­ti­tude to peo­ple who do not con­form to your ideals of iden­tity is trans­par­ently prej­u­diced. It makes me SO angr y that you just refuse to be­gin to un­der­stand what is so plainly un­der your noses. The no­tion that we gay peo­ple ‘choose’ our iden­tity is in the vast ma­jor­ity of cases ut­terly ab­surd. It is your ‘choice’ to ig­nore the weight of hu­man ex­pe­ri­ence in your de­sire to see things as you wish them to be, not as they are.

The au­thor’s habit of putting words rep­re­sent­ing the way that peo­ple iden­tify them­selves in quo­ta­tion marks (“A Guardian writer re­ported an angr y re­ac­tion from ‘les­bians’...”, “‘Bi­sex­ual’ Katie Welsh in the Tele­graph says...”) is also re­ally in­sult­ing. How would you feel if we went around call­ing you ‘Chris­tians’ - in quo­ta­tion marks? ‘Chris­tian’ pub­li­ca­tion The Church of Eng­land News­pa­per... ‘Straight’ ‘Chris­tian’ Arch­bishop Justin Welby... Those quo­ta­tion marks are de­lib­er­ately po­si­tioned to un­der­mine our self-iden­tity as if the per­sonal ex­pe­ri­ence of count­less tens of thou­sands of peo­ple counts for ab­so­lutely noth­ing.

I am a gay Chris­tian, not a ‘gay’ ‘Chris­tian’. Us­ing quo­ta­tion marks in this way sim­ply demon­strates the au­thor’s lack of love, re­spect and grace.

Peter Chater, Gay Chris­tian

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