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Horton’s Misleading Argument

The letter [“Who’s the Real Nutcase,” Mar. 16] from Charles N. Horton ’99 shows a somewhat superficial reading of the Bible. His Leviticus passages are found within a context of the ancient Hebrew tradition and are largely considered irrelevant for the modern Christian -- the eating of pork, weaving together of two different cloths (those heinous polyester cotton mixes), and eating at the same table as a menstruating woman. His quote from the Corinthians is found within a context of Paul’s dislike of sex in general -- yes even within the context of heterosexual marriage. Paul was celibate, and he wanted everyone else to be.

For a topic that consumes so much of the attention of Horton and those who think like him, it is startling that in three years of ministry, Christ himself had absolutely nothing to say on the topic. So Horton is left to quote from an apostle who stated clearly that wives should submit to their husbands, that women should wear hats in church, and an assortment of other proscriptions no longer considered relevant.

Having grown up in apartheid South Africa, I am startled by the similarity in Horton’s biblically justified claims against homosexuality and of those made by the apartheid government.

A substantial part of the Christian Church has begun a re-evaluation of its position on homosexuality -- the Dignity group and the Jesuit Urban Center within the Catholic church, the substantial Metropolitan Community Church group, the UUs, the Episcopalians at the Lambeth conference and a host of other Protestant and Jewish groups. These groups think that the Bible is ambiguous on homosexuality, and yet Horton appears not to understand why.

I invite Horton and his co-thinkers to focus their attention on true sins -- those that damage other people, those that cause emotional distress to other people, and those that leave other people dead and wounded. Homosexuality and Christianity coexist quite happily within many people. Horton’s apparent dislike of homosexuality and his attempts to justify this position with quotes taken out of context is rather sad. His failure to condemn the killing of Matthew Shepard and the heartless picketing of the funeral by “Christians” is even sadder. As an educated person, one assumes Horton is not the nutcase and fully understands the position of his movement, and it is this position that is enough to discredit the entire movement.

Matthew Dyer G