Uneducated opinions are poisonous, but let’s talk about Tyree himself. The 31-year-old is a former crack addict who was arrested for drug possession in 2004. Furthermore, two of his children were born out of wedlock. According to Deuteronomy 23:2 (that’s in the Bible he’s fond of referencing), “The child begotten out of wedlock or incest shall not enter into the congregation of the Lord; even to his tenth generation shall he not enter into the congregation of the Lord.”
If we want to be biblical literalists, like Tyree himself, his children, James Baldwin and Luther Vandross will all be sharing the same eternal resting place. In no way do I believe this to be true, but it’s hilarious that someone who was smoking crack and having unprotected sex before marriage is attempting to shoot his moral compass at anyone.
Black folks may be having the most homophobic month ever, but Tracy Morgan and David Tyree are not the enemies. They have no power. The true enemy is institutionalized homophobia being upheld by a cherry-picking government. So while folks rage at Tyree and Morgan, they are harmless duds — yet they represent a very real problem.
Of course, not every black person is homophobic; nor are we more homophobic than whites. But there is a particular bombastic banter that many African Americans think they can get away with because we are a minority ourselves. In the way that some whites tiptoe around racism, we — particularly the public figures in our community — should tiptoe around homosexuality.
Gays are not just white men. They are poor, middle class, disabled, Native American, black, Asian, Latino, Jewish, Muslim, Christian, single mothers, single fathers and any other identity you can imagine. If any of us desires to damn people to hell, we can all dig for a user-friendly Bible verse to validate our hatred. But God loves us all. Life, whether it begins out of wedlock or within marriage; and love, whether it’s gay, straight or on crack, are human rights that should be experienced authentically.