Franklin Graham has been posting about Gay Pride. His argument appears to go something like this:
- Pride is always a sin.
- Therefore, gay pride is a sin.
One of the sins God hates most is PRIDE. Your pride, my pride, gay pride.
“Everyone proud in heart is an abomination to the LORD; Though they join forces, none will go unpunished.” (Proverbs 16:5)
— Franklin Graham (@Franklin_Graham) June 6, 2023
Did you know that God hates pride? We read a lot about June being designated Pride Month, but I think Princeton professor @McCormickProf has a great idea—let’s celebrate humility and fidelity this month, not the opposite. https://t.co/IsGSPU16FM
— Franklin Graham (@Franklin_Graham) June 4, 2023
Graham is committing a bald equivocation fallacy. The word pride in the term “Gay Pride” does not refer here to a vice of inordinately high self-opinion. Rather, it refers to the “celebration of a specific minority group and affirmation of equal rights for members of that community.” (source) This is rooted in a secondary definition of pride as “proper pride” or “personal honor”, a definition that has existed since Middle English. (source)
Graham seems to be a relatively literate man, so I have no doubt he is well familiar with this secondary definition since we use it all the time. e.g. “You should take pride in your achievements!” And I expect he is also familiar with the way it has been used, in particular, by historically marginalized minority groups as noted above (cf. “Black Pride”).
So if Graham is not ignorant of the actual definition of pride used in the term Gay Pride, is he a liar deliberately misrepresenting it? Or could it be that he is so blinded by contempt and hatred for gay people that his own confirmation bias obscured the obviously intended meaning leaving only the false and inflammatory interpretation of sinful pride?
I suspect it is the final option. I don’t think Graham is ignorant and I don’t think he is baldly lying. Rather, I suspect he is so hostile toward gay people, so contemptuous of them, so driven by his confirmation bias to malign their community, that he took an obviously erroneous interpretation of the term “Gay Pride” and is now maligning the community buoyed by his hatred.
My suggestion to Graham: he would do well to deal with the condition of his own heart before turning the spotlight on others.