The EFM Feature

I am traveling at the moment, but I’ve just been made aware that there is a New York Times article out today on the governor’s record on “gay issues.” Forgive me for yawning. Everyone knows that since his 1994 Senate run, Gov. Romney has changed. If you haven’t changed since 1994, raise your hand.
Getting into specifics, I don’t care at all that Gov. Romney said that gays shouldn’t face discrimination. They shouldn’t. I believe that. He still believes that. That is not the same as saying they should be legally “married.” Nor do I care that he called in 1994, as he has continued to do so, for our society to be a humane one. So it should be. That is why the Bible commands Christians to speak the truth in love, as we evangelicals here have tried to do vis-a-vis Mormons–and, I believe, as we are called to do vis-a-vis gays. No matter whether you think they should be married, you should still treat them kindly. The Golden Rule still applies when you’re dealing with people guilty of sin because, well, we are all guilty of sin.
Of course, being for a humane society and not standing for discrimination does not mean embracing a radical political agenda. Gov. Romney has shown, in his actions as an elected official, that he is against “gay marriage”–and also that he seeks to speak about the issue in a thoughtful way. There is no contradiction, I would add, in being against both “gay marriage” and discrimination. It isn’t discrimination to treat two gay men the same way you would treat two straight men–as two men, not a married couple. That’s why people say “gay marriage” would redefine marriage. It’s not tolerance (or reversing discrimination) to turn upside down an age-old (and God-ordained) institution. It’s a radical agenda, one this man has shown he does not support and will fight tooth and nail, no matter what he said a decade ago.
As David pointed out below, actions speak louder than words. In response to today’s news, I would add that recent actions speak much more loudly than outdated words. Yeah, Gov. Romney said some stuff in 1994 that I would rather he had not said–just as Governor Ronald Reagan said some stuff President Ronald Reagan abhorred. (Recall that this conservative saint signed an incredibly liberal abortion law.) The actions of Gov. Romney since 2002 have shown that he shares the values of conservative evangelicals, not the Log Cabin “Republicans”–who, I would note, refused to endorse President Bush in 2004. And if conservative evangelicals thought in 1980 like the NYT is telling them to do today, Jimmy Carter would have served two disastrous terms instead of one.
With that, I am going to go find my sunbathing wife, who is infinitely more interesting than this non-story. Later.
UPDATE: The following 7/15/94 quote from the Boston Globe on Gov. Romney has also come to my attention: “…And said he does not ‘favor legal recognition of gay marriages.’”

About Charles Mitchell

EFM's resident Yankee, Charles Mitchell, works in the non-profit arena in his native Pennsylvania. He and his wife, Charissa, live near the state capital of Harrisburg with their daughter, Adeline, and are members of a congregation of the Presbyterian Church in America.

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