QUEER VOICES

Is It Now Harder To Come Out As Gay... Or Evangelical?

This Heritage Foundation researcher certainly thinks it's the latter.

A conservative researcher thinks it is harder to come out as a Christian in the United States nowadays than it is to come out as gay.

Ryan Anderson, a senior research fellow with The Heritage Foundation, sat down with The Atlantic for the LGBT Summit in Washington D.C. last week to talk about civil rights and his opposition to the Equality Act, which he thinks is a detriment to those who follow Abrahamic religions. 

"Part of freedom is going to have to be the right to disagree about the truth," he said. "Gays and lesbians need to be free to live and love how they want to, but other people need to be free to live, and to work, and to run schools and charities in accordance with their beliefs. It needs to be a two-way street." 

He used the example of the celebrations that followed the Supreme Court's legalization of nationwide same-sex marriage back in June as evidence that the LGBT community has been embraced by the government, private companies and the populace alike. 

Conservative Christians who "come out" might not be granted the same celebration of self that was seen in the wake of the legalization of same-sex marriage, he argued.

"What I see here is that if you are a conservative Evangelical at a major law firm or at an Ivy League university, you have a much harder time coming out of the closet as a conservative Evangelical than you do coming out as a gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender," Anderson, who is a Princeton University graduate, explained. "That's an empirical question, but my experience at Princeton -- and that was a decade ago when I was there -- was that it was much more of a contentious subject to say that you were opposed to same-sex marriage than to say that you were in favor of it."

Anderson has his Bachelor's degree from Princeton and his PhD in political philosophy from the University of Notre Dame.  

 

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