When it comes to gay people in the Mormon faith — or in evangelical denominations — you can count on our friends in the media to detail the oppression they suffer even if the only evidence of said oppression is the narrative the journalists provide.
Our friend Sonicfrog caught the Advocate peddling this very narrative in the story of the death of a Gay Mormon man. The headline contends that his suicide “points up tensions“, but the tensions they write about come not from the details of the man’s life, but from the commentary of “some”:
As friends mourn the death of Chris Wayne Beers, a gay man and former Mormon missionary and church employee who took his own life Sunday, some are noting tensions between LGBT people and the church, which opposes gay relationships.
The only person quoted in the Advocate’s piece didn’t even know Beers: “While struggles with his faith may not have been the direct reason he took his own life,” this man said, “I’m hard pressed to imagine that there isn’t an indirect cause, at least. . . .” This leads Sonic to quip with a question, “Project much?”
There is no indication in the article that he was very devout, or that his family had dis-owned him. The main interview of the article didn’t even know the guy. Mitch Mayne does not give any indication of knowing any of the details of this mans life.
Read the whole thing. My blogging pal notes further that on Beers’s “memorial page, there is a reference to the fact that his own brother Jeff had also passed away. That could be just as much or more of a weight on Mr Beers than the conflict between church and being gay.”
Perhaps, his faith did indeed create personal conflict, but here the narrative trumps the facts provided. They provide no evidence that it did.
A man has died. His family is facing a terrible loss, a great sorrow. We should not politicize this. As Sonic says, “people get all the facts before you try to make this guy a martyr. Otherwise, you dishonor him in death.”