I know this “story” seems long gone, but it isn’t for me. A while ago, a bunch of actors from the Marvel Avengers movies came to the defense of Chris Pratt, because he was getting criticism on social media. None of them directly acknowledge why he was getting pushback, they just said how much they liked him and were his friend.
I loved the Avengers and Marvel movies. I was a huge fan of Guardians of the Galaxy, and have loved Chris Pratt’s comedy, including Parks & Rec. Now, I just get sad seeing those movies and shows coming out, because I feel this conflict about watching them.
I’m gay. Sometimes I will say lesbian, but there seems to be this perception between what it means for me to be a lesbian vs a gay woman. Either way, I am a part of the LGBT community. The thing is, I pass as straight. It’s not something I can control, but if you passed me on the street, you probably wouldn’t guess that I’m gay.
The reason Chris Pratt was facing criticism is because he belongs to a church that is anti-LGBT. I do not question his faith, and I don’t think his faith needs to be public, but his association with a church that hurts my community is something that concerns me. A church or any organization, religious or not, pushing anti-LGBT rhetoric and ideologies, sows the seeds of hate. That encourages violence against the LGBT community. My community.
It’s not just hurtful that he’s been silent about his association with an anti-LGBT church, its hurtful that his fellow Marvel actors rushed to his defense. Every person defending him failed to acknowledge what the public took issue with in the first place. Not one of his high-profile colleagues even mentioned the LGBT community.
It makes me sad, and even mad that we were completely dismissed in the conversation. Their concern was with making sure he wasn’t “canceled”, rather than acknowledging the pain LGBT communities face when people associate with anti-LGBT organizations. I love the work Marvel does. They create great stories, but watching them now feels like I’m supporting those who don’t support me.
Dismissing Chris Pratt’s refusal to acknowledge his association with an anti-LGBT church, dismisses the voices of LGBT people. It ignores the violence LGBT people face, because anti-LGBT organizations spread intolerance and hate towards us. Maybe he’s not with that church anymore, or maybe that church has realized they should stop being anti-LGBT. I would love to find that either of those is true. I want to enjoy Marvel movies without feeling like I’m betraying my own community. I want to be a fan of Chris Pratt’s work. I just wish he could explain why he doesn’t seem to support me and the LGBT community.