John M. Becker

Singing Pro-Equality Grandmother Takes On 'Ex-Gay' Myth

Filed By John M. Becker | November 06, 2013 1:30 PM | comments

Filed in: Living
Tags: ex-gay myth, grandmother, pray away the gay, Sherri Gray, songs, sweetness, Tennessee

sherri_gray_TN_grandmother.pngRemember Sherri Gray?

She's the incredibly sweet 72-year-old Tennessee grandmother who composed and performed a song about marriage equality this summer as a wedding gift for her lesbian niece and her wife. (Click here if you need a refresher.) And now, Sherri's back with a new song highlighting the absurdity of the "pray away the gay" myth.

Sherri writes:

What if gay people began trying to convert straight people to being gay... using the same techniques and phrases that have been used on them?

I believe we are born with either 'gay' or 'straight' DNA -- that it's an irreversible genetic fact -- and the idea that anyone can change it is preposterous to me. As a therapist, I have worked with many gay clients who have recounted all the ways families, friends, schools, and well-intentioned religious organizations have tried (without success) to change their orientation. The shaming, bullying, and abuse which is heaped upon these folks is abominable. All they want to do is be free to be who they really are... to live from their true 'essence', as all of us should.

Here's what is especially meaningful to me: NEVER have I, in all my years on this planet, heard an LGBTQ say that he/she wanted to take on the task of converting straight people into gay people. They 'get it'... and I have infinite respect and compassion for their truly 'living' the Serenity Prayer. They accept the things they cannot change, change the things they can, and they're wise enough to know the difference between those two categories.

I meant for the song to be funny because I'm hoping the combination of humor and music might open just a few more minds and hearts. But the message beneath it is as meaningful to me as is that of 'What If We Are Just Like You?' I am not, in any way, criticizing faith, spirituality, or prayer. Most of us want to live by moral guidelines and have our own beliefs. But I think we're asking for trouble when we try and force others to be just like us. I wrote it from a 'scientific' perspective, so to speak. Born straight, stay straight. Born gay, stay gay. In the end, we're all really okay, just the way we are :).

Right on, Sherri. Watch her new song, titled "Let Us Help You Pray the Straight Away," after the jump.


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