Tuesday, January 29, 2008

visiting alyssa

I had an interesting experience today. I ate lunch with Alyssa, a girl who transferred away from Luther. She know attends Concordia University Wisconsin which is strangely enough located in my hometown. She went to Luther for two years before transferring away, for several reasons, one of them being that Luther was too liberal for her. The fact that Luther is RIC disturbs her. Well, actually, she didn't know it was RIC until after she transferred, which is entertaining to me. I mean, Luther has been RIC since the 90s. I think it was possibly the first congregation in Iowa to go RIC.

Nonetheless. I'm not exactly sure where she stands, but I'm fairly certain that on some level, Alyssa thinks that queerness is morally wrong. Mainly because of several comments she's made when we've talked. For example, she was telling me about a debate she had in her political science course. She was debating "homosexual marriage" and her group's opening argument was that while homosexuality is wrong according to the Christian tradition, that that shouldn't mean that "homosexuals" shouldn't have equal rights. (To give you an idea of the kind of university she attends, in these debates people whipped out their bibles. Seriously? A political science debate where bibles are brought up as evidence?) Interacting with her is just strange. She has never said anything directly to me about my queerness, she has several close friends who are gay, yet there was the whole comment about her debate, and the fact that Luther's congregation was too liberal for her.

I think what confuses me is that I can't really place her. I'm not used to people who are morally opposed to queerness interacting with queers without either insulting them or trying to cure them or both. It's refreshing that she believes what she believes without trying to push it on to the queers. In some ways, she's being a lot more tolerant than a lot of queer people. I think that's another reason that I am slightly unsettled by my interactions with her. Many queer people are completely intolerant of people who think that queerness is morally wrong. And for me, this is where it gets complicated. Clearly, I want people to accept me and not think that I am a sick and twisted individual. On the other hand, I also don't want to force people to believe something. Just because I believe that I am "right" in this situation, does that make it appropriate for me to say that others beliefs aren't valid? Really, I just want people to be nice to each other. I am not being extraordinarily coherent, I realize that. If any of you have thoughts on the topic, let me know.

1 comment:

jayess said...

i've written about this type of thing lately. it's refreshing to hear you struggle with some of these things in the way you are. keep going.