Dan Savage Clarifies Condemnation of "Pansy Ass" Christians

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Dan Savage - the activist responsible for the It Gets Better campaign in response to bullying - stirred up a bit of controversy this week when he gave a speech at the National High School Journalist Conference in Seattle and told those in attendance:

We can learn to “learn to ignore the bullshit in the Bible about gay people.”

Savage went on to compare these passages to those regarding shell fish, menstruation and, especially, slavery, saying the bible is a "pro-slavery document," but we've grown to look past those parts while honoring what's really important within its pages.

Watch video excerpts of the lecture now, as about a dozen attendees get up and walk out in response to Savage's comments:

“It’s funny, as someone who’s on the receiving end of beatings that are justified by the Bible, how pansy-ass some people react when you push back,” he said to students leaving in protest, although Savage apologized for this phrasing in a blog post on Sunday, writing:

I would like to apologize for describing that walk out as a pansy-a---- move. I wasn’t calling the handful of students who left pansies (2800+ students, most of them Christian, stayed and listened), just the walk-out itself. But that’s a distinction without a difference—kinda like when religious conservatives tells their gay friends that they ‘love the sinner, hate the sin.’

They’re often shocked when their gay friends get upset because, hey, they were making a distinction between the person (lovable!) and the person’s actions (not so much!). But gay people feel insulted by ‘love the sinner, hate the sin’ because it is insulting. Likewise, my use of ‘pansy-a----’ was insulting, it was name-calling, and it was wrong. And I apologize for saying it.

But is Savage sorry for his analysis of the bible? No.

“I did not attack Christianity. I attacked hypocrisy," he says.

SHOULD Savage apologize? You tell us:

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He speaks the truth. Getting up and leaving IS a pansy ass move But if one of them went up and leveled him, he'd be screaming "Bigot! Bully!" and demanding legal-action.

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@ Ghost_503

it's a no win situation

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@Alissa... I got the point of it, he did go about it wrong. And yes there is hate from all religions. But when you hear people saying God hates homosexuals and huge Christian organizations speaking out against gay marraige etc, it leads to the belief that if you believe in God and the bible, you must be against homosexuals. I believe in God. But the bible gets a bit blurry for me.

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I think Dan's message is a good one BUT he created murky waters in his delivery. You can't tell someone not to be a bully and turn around calling people asses. Dan could have used the moment the kids walked out as a teaching. He instead called them names. I think he let his emotions get the best of him.

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@Alissa I couldn't have said it better myself. I like Dan Savage but he did act irresponsibly.

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i agree with heather, people pick and choose what they want out of the bible, Christians follow every bit of the bible. he is right about the salvery thing and what not. I look at it like this, it took a long time for people to warm up to blacks and whites being in the same room, then warmed up to mixed couples and kids, although they still make issues of it, it is not near as bad as it was..gays will soon be the same. They wont agree, but it wont be as big as an issue as it is now. LET GAYS BE GAYS AND STRAIGHTS BE STRAIGHT! WHAT THE HELL IS IT DOING TO HURT YOU? Oh what you dont like seeing them hold hands and kiss? I'm pretty sure they dont like seeing straights hold hands and kiss. Get over it, theres nothing you can do about it.

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@ Jaelyn & @ Truth (or lack of) and @ Heather: you completely missed the point. He was irresponsible in his role as an "anti-bullying" speaker by attacking Christianity and Christians with the name-calling. Whats the point? He could have approached it in a more mature and respectable way. By the way, many Christians, such as myself, support gay rights and many people who attack the gay community are non-Christians.

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He speaks the truth. Getting up and leaving IS a pansy ass move. People ignore SO many biblical laws and passages, claiming they don't matter nowadays. But yet gay people are harassed, hated, bullied. Treated as sub-human sometimes. Why does it matter if other people are gay? If god doesn't like it, leave it to god. It's not up to you. Mind your own life!

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So its wrong to bully those of another religion, but ok to bully those with a different sexual orientation? Theres hipocracy for you! Alot of what he says is true. Many people pick and choose what parts of the bible they use to prove points. So many things in the bible obviously cant be taken literally, so how about the rest? I believe in God, but alot of things in the bible are hard to get your head around.

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The man's a pig! Hopefully groups will now see him as a "public address piriah" and refrain from booking him especially for young people's events! He's supposedly a champion against bullying yet he bullies people of a different religious persuasion than him. Yeah. Right.

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Savage is great. Apologize for nothing. Right on!