A video of a young man coming out to his family has gone viral. Daniel Ashley Pierce recorded an “intervention” his family set up to confront him about being gay. Their reaction is tragic, abusive, and a testament to the profound stupidity of holding onto ancient religious beliefs.
That is not how to react to your child coming out as gay. Most astonishing is that one of Daniel’s family members admits that she had known Daniel was gay since he was a little boy. Yet she rejected the scientific evidence that homosexuality is not a choice.
There is no choice involved. Obviously a person can choose what acts to engage in, but in terms of desires, that is built in. What Daniel’s family member implies is that as a boy, let us say five-years-old, Daniel consciously decided to like boys even though he knew his parents would object. He maintained this choice for the next 15 years, despite all the trauma and conflict it would cause.
Just one question: why?
Why would anyone choose to subject themselves to the anger, humiliation, and hatred shown in the video? Why would any child choose to do this? Remember, we are talking about the same type of people who will stop using a folder if the rest of their class makes fun of it. We are supposed to believe that a child cannot endure that basic level of mockery, but they are perfectly fine with the chances of being kicked out of their home?
It is preposterous.
I must admit that this is rather personal for me because a familial situation. Readers may notice that I have not posted as much in the last two months. This is because my family has been dealing with a situation similar to Daniel’s.
Last year, my godson came out. We all suspected that he was gay for some time. He made a joke of it. He used his New Year’s resolution to say, “My New Year’s resolution is to always tell the truth. I’m gay. Next.” His oldest brother replied with, “You can’t tell us something we already know.” That was the most anyone made of it.
When my godson began high school this year, he met a boy. They became friends and casually ended up “dating.” (I put it in quotes because all they are doing is playing music and video games together.)
At the end of June, the boy decided to tell his Irish Catholic parents that he is gay. He brought my godson with him. His parents had met my godson and apparently liked him. However, it went poorly. The boy’s mother physically forced both boys out of the house and locked them out. My godson called him mother, and when she arrived the boy’s parents would not let her in either. She ended up yelling at them through the door, which prompted a neighbor to call the police. The parents would not let the police in either. They did eventually agree to allow my godson’s mother to take their son. He has been with us since then, and it has not gotten better.
I find it bizarre that anyone could disown their child for something so trivial. Normally I have little problem putting myself in someone else’s position, but I simply cannot fathom how any parent could treat their child this way. I cannot see any good reason for doing it.
How can you treat a person that way and not feel guilty?
I hope that Daniel has the support that my godson’s boyfriend has gotten from us. I would like to think it has helped him cope to a degree. I cannot imagine how hard it would be to have no one there to back you up after something as tragic as what happened in that video.
The one good thing I think comes from Daniel’s video is that people can show that to Christian fundamentalists. Perhaps if they see and hear what they look and sound like when they say such hurtful things they may understand why they ought not say them.
It is interesting that the man they call god spent his time with the undesirables of his day. He would have been more likely to spend time with Daniel than Daniel’s family. Funny how so many fundamentalists claim to live by Jesus’ example but when given the chance they rarely do.