I had the privilege last week of hearing State Rep. Karla Drenner speak at Oglethorpe University in Atlanta as part of an ongoing speaker series. Rep. Drenner spent much of her time discussing environmental issues as she is an environmental health expert. I was very impressed by Karla’s grasp of the issues and wouldn’t disagree with State Rep. Fran Millar description of Drenner as “one of the smartest legislators in the state”.
As the only openly lesbian legislator in the South, I was interested to hear Drenner’s take on the recent controversies over gay marriage. Drenner told the audience about two interesting episodes over the past couple of years involving the gay marriage debate in Georgia. She first spoke about being at the capital on a day that many conservative Christians had come to protest gay marriage. There were many ministers in attendence as well as families with children protesting gay marriage. And many in this group were carrying signs that said “God Hates Fags”.
Karla also spoke of listening to the radio in Gainesville, GA one day and heard a political campaign ad by one of her fellow Democrats in which he stated that he hated gays just as much as his opponent did.
As a conservative Christian myself, I was embarrassed for my fellow Christians at hearing these accounts. There is a legitimate discussion and debate to be had on the topic of gay marriage. But it is not legitimate for the Christian community or individuals to show hatred towards homosexuals.
I’d like to apologize to Rep. Drenner and the gay and lesbian community on behalf of Christians for the hatred that is sometimes directed at them. And while there may likely be real areas of disagreement between Christians and the homosexual community, I’d love to work with Rep. Drenner to create a better atmosphere of understanding.