from The New Civil Rights Movement (8/7/12):
After coming out and being disowned by his father, a gay man published his father’s short, handwritten letter (image, above), which has now gone viral. The son, who goes by the name “RegBarc” on the Internet social sharing site Reddit, blames “zealotry from Bryan Fisher (national spokesperson for the Venango County-based American Family Association of Pennsylvania), Maggie Gallagher (National Organization for Marriage), Dan Cathy (Chik-fil-A), etc.” for his father’s response.
The father’s letter reads:
“James: This is a difficult but necessary letter to write. I hope your telephone call was not to receive my blessing for the degrading of your lifestyle. I have fond memories of our times together, but that is all in the past. Don’t expect any further conversations With me. No communications at all. I will not come to visit, nor do I want you in my house. You’ve made your choice though Wrong it may be. God did not intend for this unnatural lifestyle. If you choose not to attend my funeral, my friends and family will understand. Have a good birthday and good life. No present exchanges will be accepted. Goodbye, Dad.”
The son’s thoughts, via Reddit:
“It’s important to know just what this zealotry from Bryan Fisher, Maggie Gallagher, Dan Cathy, et al., does to everyday people. I’ve never done drugs, was an excellent student, an obedient child (far less trouble than many of my classmates), didn’t drink until I was 22 because it terrified me, and have had just 1 speeding ticket in my life. Yet I am still seemingly deserving of this terrible act of hate and cowardice that one person can place on another. 5 years on and I am still doing fine, though this letter saunters into my mind every once in a while. When it does, I say without hesitation: F**k you, Dad.”
Andy Towle at Towleroad, who first published the letter via Reddit, writes:
It’s an all too familiar situation for many LGBT kids out there.
He’s right. The Dan Cathys of the world are giving tacit permission to parents to act this way. Shame on them.
On Reddit, the post has over 4000 comments and 2270 “up votes.”
“Pretty nasty stuff” is what John Aravosis at AmericaBlog calls it, noting:
This is how the religious right, and the Republican party that enables them, quite literally kill people.
John M. Becker at Truth Wins Out shares a personal story, and adds:
The shockingly cruel letter below, from a father to his newly-out gay son, has been spreading like wildfire through social media. When I first saw it posted on the Facebook profile of Hudson Taylor, an all-star wrestler and outspoken gay rights supporter, I knew I had to share it with you because it serves as a stark reminder of why the fight for LGBT equality and against religious extremism is so critical.