Is a bigot less of a bigot if you refer to him as a skeptic? Peter Saunders, CEO of the UK-based Christian Medical Fellowship, wrote an article this week challenging the definition of homophobia, and labeling himself not as homophobic, but “homoskeptic.”
Being judged “homophobic” can cost you dearly. … For many people “homophobia” is actually about “having a fear of being accused of being bigoted, prejudiced or discriminating against homosexual people”. This fear, which is increasingly common, causes people to take a defensive posture in order to avoid attracting disapproval or adverse publicity. This may take the form of changing ones public position, pretending to adopt views in accordance with the prevailing liberal consensus, actively denying ones real beliefs or simply abstaining from expressing an opinion when the matter is discussed. This kind of “homophobia” is becoming increasingly common amongst those who belong to religious faiths which teach that sex outside marriage is wrong (ie. most world faiths) and it is not difficult to come up with examples of (often) prominent people in whom the condition is well advanced. For people who don’t hate, dislike or fear gay people, but simply believe that sex between people who are not married (including all sex between those of the same sex) is morally wrong, we need a new term. I’d like to propose the term “homoskeptic” – a term that is not yet in common use and hence arguably open to (re)definition
In the comments section of NOM’s post in support of Saunders’ “redefinition,” a user under the handle of AnonyGrl responded:
And I would like to suggest that people who don’t hate or fear African Americans but simply think that they are morally inferior should be called afroskeptics. And people who don’t hate or fear women but think that they just shouldn’t get paid the same as men or have control of their own bodies should be gynoskeptics.
Saunders may want to think of himself as homoskeptic, but we know better. He is attempting to make homophobia sound morally acceptable, and it’s not.