Update: Welcome to those who are coming from the Blogs4God plug!
It's rare that I'll find an extended discussion of anything by Tony Campolo that I agree with without reservation, but this excellent post at Fidler on the Roof includes one such discussion. He rightly condemns much of evangelicalism for how it handles homosexuality while affirming that homosexual relationships are out-of-step with being a follower of Christ. He insists that we don't have good evidence for the causes of homosexuality, and this fits with my conclusion that there seem to be biological and social causes. His main point, though, is that most evangelicals' insistence that it's purely social placed the blame on parents, which makes parents who are already scared of gay people even more scared that their kids will turn out gay. Just look at Hank Hill. There really is something called homophobia. Most people who say "love the sinner but hate the sin" really are homophobic [update: and I don't just mean people like Jimmy Swaggart, who should have given up his ministry years ago]. Many evangelicals say they're not scared of gay people, but I've seen enough detest for gay sex transferred to dislike for people who might practice it that I never believe anyone who uses that line unless I see evidence in their life that shows real love for gay people.
Check out the rest of Julie's post, particularly her reflections on her own struggles with same-sex desire and her dialogue with a gay man in a committed homosexual relationship for some more balanced and what seems to me to be the right attitude toward gay people and the whole issue. I'm particularly impressed with how she explains the distinction between being gay and advocating and seeking a gay lifestyle. It's people in her position who are going to make the most progress between evangelicals and the gay community.
I know people in a similar position, and they can speak to gay people in a way I would have a harder time doing, but what's more important is that what they're saying speaks to a gay person in a way that's impossible if you don't acknowledge that being gay doesn't feel like a choice. It feels like you just find yourself attracted to people of the same sex. Living a lifestyle of seeking relationships with people of the same sex is a choice on some level, but being gay is not about a choice of lifestyle. It's about acknowledging a state of being prior to any choice about lifestyle. Regardless of whatever really does cause that state of being, evangelicals need to acknowledge that reality, and they tend not to. Gay people will still usually resist the idea that they should choose a lifestyle not consonant with the way they find themselves to be, but that's where the issue lies, not with how someone comes to be gay.