Dan Savage is speaking out after his obscenity-laced speech at the National High School Journalist Conference in Seattle sparked a national controversy.
The outspoken lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) rights advocate addressed the backlash on his blog late Sunday. "I would like to apologize for describing that walk out as a pansy-assed move," he writes. "I wasn't calling the handful of students who left pansies (2,800+ students, most of them Christian, stayed and listened), just the walk-out itself. But that's a distinction without a difference -- kinda like when religious conservatives tells their gay friends that they 'love the sinner, hate the sin.'"
"I didn't call anyone's religion bullshit. I did say that there is bullshit -- 'untrue words or ideas' -- in the Bible. That is being spun as an attack on Christianity.
I was not attacking the faith in which I was raised. I was attacking the argument that gay people must be discriminated against -- and anti-bullying programs that address anti-gay bullying should be blocked (or exceptions should be made for bullying 'motivated by faith') -- because it says right there in the Bible that being gay is wrong. Yet the same people who make that claim choose to ignore what the Bible has to say about a great deal else. I did not attack Christianity. I attacked hypocrisy."
"All Christians read the Bible selectively," he concludes. "Some read it hypocritically -- and the hypocrites react very angrily when anyone has the nerve to point that out."
A number of students, including one who appeared to be crying, walked out of the keynote speech after Savage noted, "We can learn to ignore the bull---t in the Bible about gay people."
Among those to slam Savage was the executive director of LGBT conservative group GOProud, who demanded the "It Gets Better" activist apologize for his comments. "It is ironic that someone whose claim to fame is fighting bullying would resort to bullying tactics in attacking high school students who were offended by his outrageous remarks," Jimmy LaSalvia told Fox News.
Meanwhile, as Fox News also reported, the event's organizers have jumped to Savage's defense, saying they "appreciate the level of thoughtfulness and deliberation" that went into the speech. "Some audience members who felt hurt by his words and tone decided to leave in the middle of his speech, and to this, we want to make our point very clear: While as a journalist it’s important to be able to listen to speech that offends you, these students and advisers had simply reached their tolerance level for what they were willing to hear," the National Scholastic Press Association was quoted as saying in a statement.
For 13 other things the bible forbids besides homosexuality, view the slideshow below:
Eating A Ham Sandwich
Lunch time? Leviticus 11:7-8 reads: <blockquote>And the swine, though he divide the hoof, and be clovenfooted, yet he cheweth not the cud; he is unclean to you. Of their flesh shall ye not eat, and their carcase shall ye not touch; they are unclean to you.</blockquote>
Thinking of getting the Superman insignia on your bicep? Leviticus 19:28 states: <blockquote>Ye shall not make any cuttings in your flesh for the dead, nor print any marks upon you: I am the LORD.</blockquote>
Off to the barber? Leviticus 19:27 states: <blockquote>Ye shall not round the corners of your heads, neither shalt thou mar the corners of thy beard.</blockquote>
Men With Injured Or Cut Off Private Parts Entering Houses Of God
It's bad enough if you're a man who has had his private parts injured -- or heaven forbid cut off -- but to add insult to injury, Deuteronomy 23:1 states: <blockquote>He that is wounded in the stones, or hath his privy member cut off, shall not enter into the congregation of the LORD.</blockquote>
Have you ever had your palm read? Or maybe you've consulted your horoscope for a little guidance? Leviticus 19:31 reads: <blockquote>Regard not them that have familiar spirits, neither seek after wizards, to be defiled by them: I am the LORD your God.</blockquote> Photo by zopdeep on <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/mcpucho/318112432/sizes/m/in/photostream/" target="_hplink">Flickr.com</a>
Heard some juicy news about Harold in the accounting department? Can't wait to tell your BFF that you just read that Snooki is pregnant? Leviticus 19:16 states: <blockquote>Thou shalt not go up and down as a talebearer among thy people: neither shalt thou stand against the blood of thy neighbour; I am the LORD.</blockquote> Photo by JoeInSouthernCA on <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/joebehr/4744688383/sizes/z/in/photostream/" target="_hplink">Flickr.com</a>
Wives Helping Out Their Husbands In A Fight
Gentlemen -- if you ever get in a fight and you get the feeling your lady might jump in and lend you a hand by squeezing your opponent's... ahem... "secrets," you'd better stop her. Deuteronomy 25:11-12 states: <blockquote>When men strive together one with another, and the wife of the one draweth near for to deliver her husband out of the hand of him that smiteth him, and putteth forth her hand, and taketh him by the secrets Then thou shalt cut off her hand, thine eye shall not pity her.</blockquote>
Children Cursing Their Parents
Kids these days -- you never know what's going to come out of their mouths! But hopefully your child doesn't curse you because Exodus 21:17 states: <blockquote>"And he that curseth his father, or his mother, shall surely be put to death."</blockquote>
Getting Remarried After Getting Divorced
When it comes to the Bible, this is a big no-no (unless your spouse was cheating on you): Mark 10:11-12 states: <blockquote>Whosoever putteth away his wife, and marrieth another, committeth adultery: and whosoever marrieth her that is put away from her husband committeth adultery.</blockquote>
Working On The Sabbath
In our fast-paced society, does anyone really work Monday to Friday from 9-5? Exodus 31:14-15 states: <blockquote>"Ye shall keep the sabbath therefore; for it is holy unto you: every one that defileth it shall surely be put to death: for whosoever doeth any work therein, that soul shall be cut off from among his people. Six days may work be done; but in the seventh is the sabbath of rest, holy to the LORD: whosoever doeth any work in the sabbath day, he shall surely be put to death.</blockquote>
Women Speaking In Houses Of God
Headed to church, ladies? 1 Corinthians 14:34-35 states: <blockquote>Let your women keep silence in the churches: for it is not permitted unto them to speak; but they are commanded to be under obedience, as also saith the law. And if they will learn any thing, let them ask their husbands at home: for it is a shame for women to speak in the church.</blockquote>
Eating Shrimp, Lobster, And Other Assorted Seafood
Craving a big bowl of popcorn shrimp? Leviticus 10-11 states: <blockquote>And all that have not fins and scales in the seas, and in the rivers, of all that move in the waters, and of any living thing which is in the waters, they shall be an abomination unto you: They shall be even an abomination unto you; ye shall not eat of their flesh, but ye shall have their carcases in abomination.</blockquote> Photo by jeffreyw on <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/jeffreyww/5833838507/sizes/z/in/photostream/" target="_hplink">Flickr.com</a>
Losing Your Virginity Before You Get Married
Today it might be harder to find a bride who is a virgin rather than the other way around. But Deuteronomy 22:20-21 states: <blockquote>But if this thing be true, and the tokens of virginity be not found for the damsel: Then they shall bring out the damsel to the door of her father's house, and the men of her city shall stone her with stones that she die: because she hath wrought folly in Israel, to play the whore in her father's house: so shalt thou put evil away from among you</blockquote>