Social media has erupted into another fake, political correctness controversy. And like most of these controversies, people should stand by the victims: Chip and Joanna Gaines.
The latest episode is due to the “shocking” revelation that two conservative Texans are also conservative Christians. How could HGTV or its parent company Scripps Networks hire these people?
Maybe that is an over-simplification. People get extremely upset when people they look up to do not share their views, especially when the views stand against their personal identity. There is a real debate in academic theology circles on whether “homosexuality” in the bible refers to the homosexual relationships common in ancient times (that is, hook-up culture) or simply homosexual sex. Liberal theologians tend to argue the former, while conservative theologians argue the latter. If you want to engage this debate, the scholarship is interesting.
The social media outrage does not actually engage the worthy debate. Instead, they attack the family and call for their political repentance because they do not like their beliefs. They also do not like the idea that they do not support their lifestyle choices or their God-given genetic presuppositions (ignoring that most things the Church calls “sin” is a genetic presupposition (Ecclesiastes 7: 20, 29)).
As such, the controversy is a war against having the ongoing debate. It is an attack on free thought and the ability to solve these problems. It attacks disagreement. This is the important point. If it came out that Chip and Joanna Gaines were actively attacking LGBT persons or supporting those who do, then the question would be different. Simply holding a conservative theological perspective regarding human sexuality does not mean necessarily you support restructuring society through political means to only legally endorse that lifestyle. Even if you do support these views, it still can be distinguished with outlawing sin, which would only be just if you outlawed all sin (requiring a U.S. Constitutional amendment).
But they are not arguing for a conservative Christian political empire. Nor are they calling for forcing people to join their church. In fact, they are not calling for anything. They simply are members of a conservative church that holds conservative views and asks people to voluntarily repent from their sin.
Because they are targeted because of religious membership, civil libertarians and all conservatives should #StandWithGaines.