Saturday, March 20, 2010

Thoughts about the Interview on 720 AM

I have taken a few days to reflect on the interview Paul and I had on Monday of this week with Heidi Harris. Heidi covered the traditional questions of why we wrote the book, did you know your son was gay before he told you, how did he tell you, etc. The end of our time together was spent on Tolerance vs Acceptance. We talked about the continuum from intolerant to advocate and how we hoped people could move along in their thinking by studying this issue like a debater studies both sides of an issue before a debate. It is through education that we become clearer on why we believe what we do instead of just accepting certain things just because our parents, church, or others tell us that is the way it is. Heidi defended her position of being "tolerant of gays" because that is what she believes. The other guest, who was gay, said he thinks tolerant is an okay word for the gays and doesn't mind it. Paul and I hope Heidi and others will move ahead a bit in their thinking and become the "debater". Here is why we have hope. We met a man at Book Expo America last May who said he used to be homophobic and now is an advocate. I asked him how he made such a huge turnaround. His response was that he looked in the mirror and asked himself if this is how he wanted to be defined (homophobic). His strategy was to befriend a gay man and learn about him and his life. He said that over time all the things he believed about gays melted away. What a wonderful testament. We wish others could have that look in the mirror and ask themselves that same question. We wouldn't have anything to talk about in this blog if that were the case.

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