By Alec Rooney
This is a memo to the social media trolls that accuse your documentary-making pals at the Christian Action Network of "hate."
It's also a reminder to the leftist priesthood at groups like the Southern Poverty Law Center, experts on all things hate, who several years ago labeled CAN as a "hate group."
We don't hate.
Try to think about things a little more deeply, people.
Sure, trolls will be trolls, and organizations like SPLC need to keep all that luscious hate-cash rolling in. But ... engage in a little critical thinking. Don't think with your emotions. Try some of that tolerance you're always recommending.
Orlando was hate.
San Bernardino was hate.
Paris and Chattanooga and Nairobi and Lahore and Beslan and Brussels Airport and Charlie Hebdo and the Boston Marathon and 9/11 and countless other killings and maimings, along with the atrocities of ISIS and Hamas and al Qaida and Boko Haram and the Muslim Brotherhood ... those are hate.
And do not forget the recent violence unleashed against peaceful attendees at rallies for Donald Trump, or the violence promoted and promised by groups like Black Lives Matter. That is also hate. It's actual violent, bullying, destructive action against actual people participating in the political process, nothing less.
CAN warns about the dangers of abandoning Christianity, creating a vacuum into which hopeless, hateful ideologies like radical Islam can and do creep. This is not hate.
CAN wants people to realize that our western, Christian culture, flawed though it may be, produces a free and tolerant society where all may live, talk, debate, raise families and, incidentally, where places like Pulse, "Orlando's hottest gay club," can and do exist. As for warning people that this is not a healthy or wholesome way to live, we do that too.
But this is not hate.
Yes, CAN advocates against homosexual marriage and the gay lifestyle, believing those behaviors to be incompatible with our role as children of a loving God, working together as males and females, raising healthy children of our own and keeping humanity going, and going forward.
That's not hate either.
CAN also stands against throwing out the meanings of "male" and "female," and trying to reshape the way everyone thinks and talks to fit the few who can't deal with the bodies they were born in. Help these people, yes. Understand them and feel compassion for them, yes. But don't try to reshape everyone's world for them. Don't abolish the scientific truth of different, unchangeable sexes just because .5 percent of humanity can't deal with it.
Standing for truth is not hate.
Yes, CAN advocates a safe and sane immigration policy that puts the burden of proving good intent on people who want to enter the United States and enjoy its prosperity, liberty and relative peace. CAN advocates vigilance and skepticism about foreign migrants who would bring their own laws and customs (e.g. Sharia, genital mutlilation, second-class-citizen status for women) to the United States, spurning our Constitution and our own system of guaranteed rights.
It's not hate to do that.
Yes, CAN agrees with certain presidential candidates who say Muslim immigration to the United States should be tightly throttled until Muslims make up their collective minds to address their own terrorism problem, so horribly exemplified in Orlando over the weekend.
That certainly is not hate. It's a practical political approach to self-preservation and national security.
So to sum up, we're not "haters" as we make our documentaries about Islam invading Europe and the U.S. education system. We don't share and write news and interact on social media out of hate. We have beliefs and convictions and are pledged to use words and pictures as our only weapons.
We're working for a more peaceful and successful and tolerant world. We are not assembling bombs, loading weapons and planning massacres. We're not burning and beheading or even telling everyone what words they're allowed to use. We're not storming into nightclubs and maiming strangers because someone offended our religious sensibilities. We're not trying to rub anyone out of existence for disagreeing with us.
It is amazing how many people cannot tell the difference.
Alec Rooney serves as communications director for the Christian Action Network. He is a longtime journalist, with experience as a writer and editor at five daily newspapers over 25 years. An award-winning print copy editor and copy desk chief, he also works as a freelance academic book editor. He is a 1986 graduate of the University of the South in Sewanee, Tenn., and holds an M.A. in English from the University of Kentucky.