Dan Savage's after-dinner debate with Brian Brown of the National Organization for Marriage this week was perhaps most striking for its overall civility. However, a blog penned by Brown in the wake of the much-publicized debate takes a considerably harsher stance.
"One thing is very clear to me after the time we spent together: Dan Savage believes that gay people are 'a tiny defenseless minority,' as he said during the debate," Brown notes in the lengthy, long-winded blog. "He doesn't seem to realize that his position as a 47 year old adult -- one with the power of fame, celebrity and access to not only the White House, but also MTV -- requires a new mentality."
"Savage wants to believe that he can reconcile his views with Christianity. He keeps telling Christians nothing will change for them if he gets his way: 'I don't think LGBT Americans are asking American Christians to do anything you haven't already done. We know you can move because many Americans have already moved.'
And then he uses his growing power (personal and cultural) to argue that Christianity is wrong, the Bible is wrong, and retaining the traditional understanding of sex and marriage is bigotry because he says it's like picking and choosing which texts to believe. For Dan, there is no authoritative tradition in the Bible. Just like he gets to make up his theology on marriage, he gets to make up what Christians believe as well, and if we don't agree with him we are bigots."
Noting that "gay marriage is not like racism or interracial marriage" as "sexual morality and marriage are quite different," Brown then notes:
"Let me pose a question to the Dan Savages of the world. Once gay people were a powerless and defenseless minority. Now, you have organized, protested, and become powerful through the use of democratic freedoms and intellectual debate, a powerful cultural force in our time. What use do you intend to make of your power?"
For his part, Savage told The New York Times' Mark Oppenheimer -- who moderated the discussion -- that he regretted hosting the event in his home. "It was better in theory than in practice — it put me at a disadvantage during the debate, as the undertow of playing host resulted in my being more solicitous and considerate than I should’ve been," he said. "If I had it to do over again, I think I’d go with a hall."
Savage's husband Terry Miller seemed to echo those sentiments, telling Oppenheimer, "Brian’s heartless readings of the Bible, then his turns to ‘natural law’ when the Bible fails, don’t hide his bigotry and cruelty. In the end, that’s what he is. Cruel."