The word "gay" is synonymous with homosexuality in today's contemporary vernacular. When the word first appeared in the English language however, it meant carefree or joyous. It was not until the 19th century that it took on its current meaning, according to the Etymology Dictionary.
Now, an outspoken Redmond, Wash., Evangelical pastor is attempting to reappropriate the term from the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) community and restore it to its original meaning.
Pastor Ken Hutcherson of the Antioch Bible Church recently posted an article on his church's blog entitled "Evangelical Pastors Announce They are Gay!"
In the ensuing post, laced with double entendres and gay stereotypes, Hutcherson argues that it is the Evangelical Church that is truly "gay" and not the homosexual community.
"For full disclosure, most of the people who are close to us have known for years how gay we are. Both of our wives know we're gay and are completely supportive of this lifestyle choice. Our co-workers know we're gay and have often asked us how they too can live as a gay Christian," Hutcherson wrote.
"Our gayness is obvious in the way we talk and the way we act toward one another. Hold a gaydar up to either of us and it's likely to read 'Fabulous!' "
Hutcherson then levels accusations at Seattle's The Stranger editor and LGBT activist Dan Savage, alleging that he is not "gay" — in the old English meaning of the word.
"Dan Savage claims to be gay. But he's not. He's just a vapid agitator who happens to be homosexual. His subcutaneous vitriol recently burst out at some high-school students when he saw they didn't support his view of the Bible," he wrote in reference to a speech Savage gave where he blasted the Bible's negative portrayal of homosexuals.
Hutcherson later goes on to ponder reclaiming the rainbow — an instantly recognizable symbol of the LGBT community before he concludes with a call for all Christians to embrace the term and pronounce themselves as gay.
"So Christians, take it from two flamboyantly gay pastors. Come out of the closet. Leave the confining hovel you've built for yourself and let people know the true 'you'," he wrote.
"Let the world know you're happy, not discouraged. Let them know you have joy, not apathy. Stop hiding in that suffocating closet and remember that the Christian message is one of authenticity, hope and love. And if that message doesn't make you gay, nothing will."