Particularly, I was curious to discover what caused Misty to start a site about homosexuality and the Bible. I suppose one might wonder why I’d look the proverbial gift horse in the mouth like that. After all, we queers can use all the pro-gay supporters we can find. However, I have to admit that I’m a naturally curious person when it comes to people’s backstories. Understanding how one’s past affect’s one’s present day choices is always someting that fascinates me. So I began looking for Ms. Irons’s story. I had just about given up and was getting ready to find a polite and friendly way to email her an inquiry when I finally noticed what I was looking for two thirds of the way down the navigation bar on her site. So I clicked on the link and read about her experiences with two neighbors, Gregg and Joel.
Let me just say that it is well worth the search, as her experiences with these two men and the painful self-realizations that those experiences caused her were touching. Indeed, I’d encourage anyone who reads the story (and I highly encourage everyone to do so) to make sure they have some tissues on hand.
What truly touches me about Ms. Irons’s story is the raw honesty of it. She unabashedly admits how little she knew about gay issues at the time, as well as how badly she misjudged the lives and personal choices of Gregg and Joel at the time. She doesn’t even try to rationalize these things or makes excuses for them. Indeed, by the end of the tale, I felt as though she was entirely being too hard on herself.
However, more important, this story and the rest of the site also tells of the kind of woman the author really is. This is a woman who is not only willing to admit when she’s been wrong, but she’s willing to do something about it. This is a woman who not only acknowledges her preconceived notions, but actively makes an effort to correct them when necessary. And for that, I applaud her. And for that, I’m thankful that I can consider her a supporter.
Of course, I also find myself admitting that she makes an excellent role model as well as a supporter. After all, evangelical Christians and straight people aren’t the only ones who have their preconceived notions. After all, I know more than one gay person (and I’ve been guilty of it myself) or supporter who has come to prejudge all evangelical Christians. When we meet one, we tend to expect certain reactions out of them and even mentally prepare ourselves for our own “stock responses” to them even before they actually happen. I even remember some of my evangelical friends from my past — people I had known for years — rightfully calling me on making assumptions about how they would treat me. And these weren’t people who I just met. These are true friends, people I should’ve known better than to make such assumptions about.
Now certainly, I can make excuses for myself as well as the rest of us. Certainly, I can argue that we’ve had plenty of bad experiences with evangelical Christians. I can rationalize that because of this, it’s perfectly natural for us to assume much the same treatment in similar situations. And there’s a certain logic to that which is undeniable. But that doesn’t make it any more right. So to Ms. Irons, I say thank you for setting the example. You made no excuses, and I will endeavor to follow in your footsteps.
Ms. Irons also has a blog, which I will be sure to add to both my blogroll and my news aggregator.