Once again, I get warped into the comment sections on Facebook and sit there, absolutely stunned, at the way some people think and the high-almighty bullshit they spout. As if they are living their life better because of what they decide other people should do. This week it was Israel Folau and his hate speech on social media, aimed toward homosexuals (following, and in the same theme of, last year’s comments claiming that homosexuals will go to hell).
I have read the argument that Folau should be let off because of other players getting away with drug use. Instead of questioning why he gets punished, why not question why they have not? If you let him off because they have been let off, are we not just moving backwards, allowing people to get away with things that are not acceptable in this day and age?
As Christians, it is important to look at yourselves; to realise you are not perfect. In each of the things he has posted about, you would be hard pressed to find anyone who does not partake in one of the practices, let alone almost all Christians.
Everyone lies. You will not meet someone who does not lie, even in the smallest ways. ✓
You are literally idolising God. ✓
Fornicators?? Is Folau going to make his children wait until marriage? ✓
I don’t give two shits if you believe in God or not. I have my own beliefs at play. The fact that anyone thinks they are above anyone else because of their personal beliefs is the issue here. Key word: personal. The issue is many Christians turn to fear mongering to push their agenda; to make others think living their life the way they want to is wrong and will send them to ‘hell’. As if living in a world of personal hell of trying to find acceptance within society isn’t enough. To have someone of such status spout hate speech, particularly for the young ones who look up to him and are potentially battling their own sexuality.
What hurts in this world is that people decide to take more action towards gay people rather than adulterers. Than sex against someone’s will. On this list, he does not mention murderers, rapists, abusive people (physically and emotionally). He does not mention people who are genuinely out there hurting others, rather he is aiming it at people who are making decisions for themselves. Who have free will. Who decide that perhaps ‘faith’ in an entity is not their purpose.
But amongst this, there is this wonderful response by Gareth Thomas, a Welsh former Rugby Union star, who came out in 2009.
A stance often taken by people trying to argue with this is that: oh but if I can’t have freedom of speech, why are you saying what I said is wrong?
And to that I say this: Is my opinion hurting anyone? I’m not hurting you; I am all for your belief in God. I am not for you using your beliefs to shelter anyone else.
What seems to be forgotten is that Australia does not have the constitution of freedom of speech that the United States does. Speak freely however you see fit, but do not view yourself so above others that there will be no consequences. There is not such a thing as freedom of speech without ramifications. He can choose what to say all over his Twitter, but cannot expect to be exempt from the repercussions of his views.
As my brother so eloquently put it when I asked his opinion: Complete flog. Believe what you want, post religious stuff, that’s all well and good. But don’t start telling people they need to repent or they’ll go to hell. Like fuck off mate, I’ll do what I want. What about your priests that sexually assault kids? Where are they going?
It falls down to the simple fact: he had a contractual obligation and he saw himself above it. One player is not bigger than the game.
Is it not that one of the main teachings to not pass judgement upon others? To love thy neighbour as you love thyself? Allow love to fill your heart and the other people surrounding you, rather than spreading hate and telling people how to live their lives. Allow your faith to accept everyone as they are, to better yourself, rather than attempting to force it upon, and guilt people into, believing what you believe.