There was never a massive distinguish difference between contemporary pop culture and religion. Religion has always been a part of world. From the music industry to books, food, media and science, religion is in all. Even in controversial topics religion has its place. One major controversy has been going on in the world for the longest now is religion and the LBGT community. As we all know, the majority religion in the United states is Christianity and Christians are the only religion is finding it very hard to accept gay rights. In some places, other religions like Islam or Hinduism are also having a hard time in accepting the LGBT community, but in this essay, I will be focusing on one religion which is Christianity. Also, would be focus on popular culture influence religion and the acceptation for the LGBT community.
The LGBT community is consisted of Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender. The LGBT community has come a long way since the 1900’s when the movement start. The first state to legalized same sex marriage was the State Massachusetts in 2003 and then in 2015, the U.S Supreme Court legalized same sex married for all 50 States. Christians has always believed that God created man and woman as they are. So, for same sex to get married and man turning into a woman or vice versa woman turning into man is all condemning to Christians. Since the same sex marriage movement has been legalized a lot of Christians came to accept the same sex marriage but except for the Methodist and the evangelic Christians. According the believe out loud website, alone in the United States, there are over 5,000 churches embrace the full inclusion of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people. And four of the United States largest Christian denominations, which is representing 10 million people, have passed inclusive policies ranging from statements of LGBT affirmation to LGBT ordination and marriage equality. So, Christians are starting to see the light in a new way.
Certainly, some Christians are still against the LGBT community. Majority of Christians believe that homosexuality is sin because the biblical scriptures are teaching that homosexual is sin. Which is true because in Leviticus 20:13, it said “If a man has sexual relations with a man as one does with a woman, both of them have done what is detestable. They are to be put to death; their blood will be on their own heads” (NIV). Also, according to Pastor Ric Fritz, the President and Director of the Center for Christian Civic Engagement, God’s standard was revealed in the book of Genesis and does not change throughout the Bible. “God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.” He then told them “Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth, and subdue it; and rule…” said the Pastor.
Although, what was pervious said may be true, but the biblical scriptures also teach about loving your neighbors. According to James 4:12 it states, “There is only one Lawgiver and Judge, the one who is able to save and destroy. But you—who are you to judge your neighbor?” Also, in Mark 12:30-31 it states, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.” These are definitely two scriptures from the bible that speak about loving your neighbors. I am sure there are quite a more that speak about this. The bible does forbid homosexuality and transgender but the bible does not say to discriminate against and many Christians do. Which is not right. I personally do not condole homosexuality and transgender, but I will not discriminate and I’ll treat these sets of people as I would normally treat anyone.
As for the Contemporary popular culture aspect for the LGBT Community, there are quite a few examples of how music and television shows help to enable people to accept their relatives or friends who coming out to saying they are part of the LGBT. For example, in an article from The Seattle Times by William Douglas and Lesley Clark said the premiered of the TV show of the Modern Family help changed a woman’s mind on gays rights. As the world, watched a married male couple raising a daughter on the hit TV show, Modern Family. People are becoming more inclined to accept the LGBT rights as popular culture is embracing the crowd of people and incorporating that community in its media.
Additionally, even before same sex marriage was legalized in all 50 states, Artists like Macklemore and Ryan Lewis has been written and singing songs about same sex. Macklemore and Ryan Lewis song, “Same love” speaks about religion and all the hatred the LGBT community faced. As the lyrics stated,
“If I was gay I would think hip-hop hates me
Have you read the Youtube comments lately
‘Man that’s gay’ Gets dropped on the daily
We’ve become so numb to what we’re sayin’
Our culture founded from oppression
Yeah, we don’t have acceptance for ’em
Call each other faggots behind the keys of a message board
A word routed in hate, yet our genre still ignores it
Gay is synonymous with the lesser”.
These Lines definitely speaks the true as to how people and the world treated the LGBT community. In additionally he also said,
“For those who like the same sex had the characteristics The right-wing conservatives think its a decision And you can be cured with some treatment and religion Man-made, rewiring of a pre-disposition. Playing God Ahh nah, here we go America the brave Still fears what we don’t know And God loves all his children it’s somehow forgotten But we paraphrase a book written 3, 500 hundred years ago”
In these lines, he hit the core on how religion plays a role in this topic and how deeply religion is drilled into on every aspect of life. Also, can be interrupt as how religion has made it more tougher to accept the LGBT community as a whole.
Today in the world, there are a lot more of celebrities that are in the ring of social media who are transgender or who is gay, lesbian or bisexual that we as a society that don’t know but honored and admire them such as Laverne Cox, Jazz Jennings, Ellen, Fergie, Angelina Jolie, and Raven Symone. These are all celebrities from the LGBT group that we all loved and watched in social media, but still discriminate against them in letting them have their rights. Popular culture has change the way for young minds thinks and broaden it to change. According to the Seattle Times, there are about 33 reappearance of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender characters on prime-time shows and 64 on scripted prime-time cable-television programs in the 2014-15.
Considering all that was said, as for my personal take on this topic, like I said before I do not condole the idea of homosexuality or transgender, but I will not discriminate against the LGBT community. I grew up with a conservative Christian background which was drilled into me as growing up that being gay, lesbian or transgender is a sin, but myself as person does not see anything wrong with it. I do believe in human rights for all so like I mention a few times before, I do not condole the idea of it, but I will not discriminate against anyone. These peoples are still human being regardless who they like or who want to be, so they do deserve the same rights and treatments as everyone else. Even in the scriptures, the bible said who are you judge other, thou shall love neighbors as yourself. The bible never told us to judge to other, it just shows us the way and god’s standard.
For Popular Culture and Religion, popular Culture has added value and change to Religion especially to Christians. Whether it is musical wise or entertainment wise, popular culture has added value to religion. Today in the world there are a lot more Christians Artists and bands out in the world today rather than it was before. There are also more genres in the Christian Music such as Contemporary Christian music, Christian Pop, Christian Rock, Christian hip hop, and Contemporary worship music. According to Ranker.com, the three top Christians music bands for 2018 are Casting Crowns, MercyMe and Third Day. I personally believe that Popular Culture has been a success towards Religion. This is because it opened up religion into modern day aspect such in music, in movies, in books, and in food. In Christianity, not so much in food, but in other religions it does.