In the wake of President Obama announcing his support of same-sex marriage, many conservative activists and politicians have gone on the war path to criticize and oppose the President’s stance. But the criticism doesn’t stop with these people, it extends to regular Americans as well. In Kansas, a middle school social studies teacher took to Facebook to bash same-sex marriage as a sin equal to murder, adultery, and pretty much every other sin in the Bible.
On his Facebook page, Prairie Middle School teacher Jack Conkling expressed his outrage of President Obama’s support of same-sex marriage, ranting about how sinful it is and that people who sin are going to hell and so on.
“All this talk in the news about gay marriage recently has finally driven me to write. Gay marriage is wrong because homosexuality is wrong. The Bible clearly states it is sin. Now I do not claim it to be a sin any worse than other sins. It ranks in God’s eyes the same as murder, lying, stealing, or cheating. His standards are perfect and ALL have sinned and fallen short of His glory. Sin is sin and we all deserve hell. Only those who accept Christ as Lord and daily with the help of the Spirit do their best to turn from sin will enter the Kingdom of Heaven. There aren’t multiple ways to get to Heaven. There is one. To many this may seem close minded and antagonistic, but it doesn’t make it any less true. Folks I am willing to admit that my depravity is just as great as anyone else’s, and without Christ I’d be destined for hell, if not for the undeserved grace of God. I’m not condemning gay marriage because I hate gay people. I am doing it because those who embrace it will never enter the Kingdom of Heaven. And I desire that for no one.”
According to LGBTQ Nation, Conkling’s Facebook page “is now private for friends only,” and “listed numerous current students among his 450+ “friends.””
So students at Prairie Middle School were able to read Conkling’s anti-gay rant. As a person who has taught in school systems, I personally object to Conkling being friends with students on Facebook. It’s a practice that shouldn’t be allowed in any school. Such allowances puts students and teachers at risk. This is most certainly the case with Conkling, who has now subjected his students to anti-gay hatred that could very well give students the impression that they should bully LGBT students at school.
Conkling is also wrong about the Bible being anti-gay. The so called “Word of God” includes a detailed love story in the first book of Samuel. Jonathan and David were depicted as gay lovers and their story is one of the more positive unions described in the Bible. Conkling’s comparison of homosexuality to the sins listed in the ten commandments is also detestable. For anybody to refer to loving another human being as comparable to murder is wrong. I also notice that ‘Thou shalt not be a homosexual’ isn’t actually in the Ten Commandments. So apparently God must not have thought it a sin at the time which kinda blows that whole ‘God is perfect’ claim out of the water. Just for clarification, I’m not criticizing the entire Christian religion, just the claims of this wing-nut teacher.
Conkling also seems to be ignoring a commandment stated by Jesus.
Romans 13:8 Owe no man any thing, but to love one another: for he that loveth another hath fulfilled the law.
9 For this, Thou shalt not commit adultery, Thou shalt not kill, Thou shalt not steal, Thou shalt not bear false witness, Thou shalt not covet; and if there be any other commandment, it is briefly comprehended in this saying, namely, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.
10 Love worketh no ill to his neighbour: therefore love is the fulfilling of the law.
Even Jesus never mentioned homosexuality as a sin. Rather, he said “love thy neighbor as thyself,” and “love is the fulfilling of the law.” So if two men or two women love each other enough to want to marry, no one should stand in the way of fulfilling the law of love.
LGBT students should not be bullied for who they are, especially by a teacher. Teachers are supposed to protect every student in the school system they work for. Conkling is failing in that regard. He can’t be fired for his own beliefs, after all the First Amendment protects free speech, but since students are able to see his hateful rants because Conkling is irresponsible for allowing students to be on his friend list, he could be fired for negatively influencing kids. This kind of influence is the definition of indoctrination. Conkling knew very well that students would be able to see his hate speech. At the least, he should be suspended and forced to apologize to the students at Prairie Middle School for making a reckless statement that may negatively impact what should be a nurturing and safe atmosphere in the classroom for all.