Hardcore. Metal. Punk. Emo. Indie.

I don’t know what the differences are between these music styles — hell, I grew up listening to Country and Southern Gospel. But, I can say without the tiniest doubt that some of the absolutely fabulous band members in these genres are among the hottest creations on God’s green earth.

This comes to mind because I was recently searching high and low for a queer punk (or whatever) band based in the Carolinas to profile as part of this issue’s Q-Living featured topic — which is music. Unfortunately, my search came up empty. I couldn’t find a single one.

Despite the apparent lack of queer punk/emo/screamo/whatever bands, I was surprised by the scope of the overwhelmingly active indie music scene in the two states.

Via DirtySouthBlog.com and MySpace.com’s band profiles, I peeked into a world I’ve never been too familiar with. To say the least, there are some great sounding artists around our parts. A good portion of them have full concert schedules working small-to-mid-sized nightclubs spread across the Carolinas and elsewhere.

After losing myself for a few hours drooling over the hot boys, I was brought back to the harsh reality of what it means to be queer in this area. The reminder came in the form of an email response to my inquiry about a particular group’s sexual orientation.

I stumbled across the band’s MySpace page and their photo [MySpace account required] — depicting the three members in bed together with one member laying his head on another one’s stomach — seemed sorta…kinda…gay. I simply asked if any of them were.

“I am a christian and so is my band,” wrote the leader of the Greenville, S.C.-based outfit A Beautiful Tragedy. [All spelling and grammar mistakes his.] “I will not support your cause in any way or fashion. It is a sin for a man and a man and a women and a women to have sexual relations.”

Enough said, right? Oh, no, it doesn’t stop there. This diatribe dwarfed my original request for information about the guy’s band.

“These kind of people need help. They need Jesus is exactly what they need. God has a law and rules. You can’t just go do whatever you feel like doing and being like. Just like the law of our nation and government and police force — there are rules and laws to abide by and if you didn’t have that, you would have total anarchy and people killing,stealing, and doing whatever they feel like doing. If you want to be gay or whatever, then nobody is stopping you. Go be gay. This is a great free country we live in. But you can’t and should not be allowed to be married. Marriage is a uniting of a man and a women through God, and how dare anyone who would pervert that and twist that. You should be ashamed of yourself for supporting and being apart of something like this.”

I get it. Are you done? Nope. It gets worse.

“A dick in the ass is a disgusting, twisted thing that man has created out of burning lust for each other.”

I guess the leader of this “christian” band has spent so much time thinking about anal sex that he’s forgotten the Bible clearly condemns filthy, shameful, lascivious and otherwise profane speech (see Ephesians 5:41, Colossians 3:8, 2 Peter 2:18 and Ephesians 4:29).

Just when you think there there couldn’t be much else to say, our musician continues with the usual religious right political crap about “democracy” and “majority rules.” He must’ve failed U.S. History class in high school. In America, being in the majority is not the same as being in tyranny over a minority.

“Here’s the next point. You are not the majority of this country! We the Christians are!!! This country was founded under the priciples of God and Christianity and every day, you stupid Liberals are trying to take that away.”

This guy is so wrong on so many issues. Clearly, our American education system has failed him. First, I’m not a liberal and it is extremely arrogant and ignorant to assume a gay man is a liberal by virtue of his gayness. Second, he needs to re-read the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution. If he can show me where in either of those documents the words “Jesus,” “Christ” or “Christianity” appear, we’ll end this debate and I’ll say he’s right. Of course, he can’t do such a thing. Those words don’t appear in any founding document of our federal republic.

And he still isn’t even done.

“I want you to know that I will fight against you people with everything I have. And I will also pray that God’s love will reach down and touch you so that you may be changed and understand the amazing power of God’s love and what it’s like to serve the one true God, the King of Kings and Lord of Lords.”

Why do radical Christianists feel the need to follow their calls for violent overthrow and battle with talk of God’s love? Do they think it moderates their extremism? Do they believe it makes their “we’re gonna fight till the death” sentiments any less troubling?

Finally, we come to the end of this communiqué, which closes like any good Southern, anti-gay diatribe should: “God bless you Mr. Comer. Get saved.”

Bless his heart; he’s so precious! For the record, I’m already saved. I’ve been that way since I was eight years old and knelt down at the altar in my tiny, country Baptist church in Winston-Salem. I actually feel quite blessed, too. I don’t need some radical Christianist with the intelligence level of less than a high schooler telling me to get saved. My salvation is none of his concern.

At the end of the day, this “beautiful tragedy” is nothing more than pure, hilarious irony. If Mr. Band Leader can’t stomach same-sex intimacy, perhaps his group shouldn’t post a profile pic that defines the term “men who lie with men.” Maybe Preacher Bob at the Temple of the Jones there in Greenville can reprogram these guys to display more “normal” gender behaviors and roles.

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Matt Comer

Matt Comer previously served as editor from October 2007 through August 2015 and as a staff writer afterward in 2016.