I live in a melting pot of different lifestyles, religions, backgrounds, etc. And apparently, ALL of them shop at Wal-Mart. Unfortunately for some of them, so do the “evangelical Christians” who have taken it upon themselves to minister to the heathens, and feel as though they have the right to do so in as rude and obnoxious a manner as they please.
I was raised by a Baptist mother who was intolerant of homosexuality, and because of this, I am raising my son to appreciate, respect, and love everyone, regardless of race, color, creed, and sexual orientation.
One day, while we were shopping for school clothes for my then 8-year old son, we were arguing about some clothes that I picked out for him. I thought they were cute, and he said they were too “baby-looking.” We were approached by a semi-flamboyant gay man who was also shopping with a small child, and he and I struck up a friendly conversation about boys and their taste in clothes as they get older, while the kids looked for things on the racks around us. My son picked up a shirt and said, “What about this one?” The man said, “That looks really nice. You have good taste!” We chatted for another minute, and then he and his child went on their way.
After they were out of earshot, a Pentecostal woman (I could tell her denomination by her long hair, long skirt, lack of jewelry or makeup, and the scowl on her face) walked up and said, “I wouldn’t buy ANYTHING for my child that was suggested by one of THOSE people.”
“Excuse me?” I said, immediately getting angry.
“It’s people like you, who are tolerant of those abominations, that will send this country straight to hell!” she replied.
I was at a loss for words, so incensed was I at this ignorance and hatred, trying to come up with something to say to get my point across without setting a bad example for my son. But my little boy, without missing a beat, says, “Ma’am, I’m sorry, but hating people for no reason will send you to hell faster than my mom being nice and talking to that nice man.”
The woman couldn’t really say anything after that, whether from embarrassment or anger I couldn’t tell. So I picked up my son, gave him a big kiss, and said to her, “Unless you come to Him like this little child, you shall not enter the kingdom of Heaven.” I know it wasn’t an exact quote, but I didn’t care. As I walked away, I said to my son, “Love, 1, Hate, 0.” And he high-fived me.