LOS ANGELES – In this summer of lighthearted gay-themed programming, a new PBS documentary is a reminder of how disconnected glossy TV images can be from real life.
“Family Fundamentals,” from filmmaker Arthur Dong, is an intimate look at homosexual children and their devout parents. It debuts at midnight today on WNIN-PBS9.
Dong’s film records the heartache of people trying to reconcile their love and their beliefs, and touches on the ripple effect of such discord beyond family circles.
“The Bible is, and says, that homosexuality is a sin, and it’s wrong,” one mother says in the film. “It’s a destructive behavior and will not bring happiness. … You can’t argue with that. It just is the way it is.”
“It’s really hard to change their point of view. Almost as hard as changing my point of view,” says a gay son.
Dong wanted to reach across the gulf with a project that would respect and speak to both sides, he said in an interview. The filmmaking process itself revealed how difficult his task was.
How is it that you present both side by only selecting those who are active homosexuals? The media tries to present those with same sex attraction as some cohesive whole with no qualms about living that lifestyle. How about also documenting a story of someone with some degree of SSA working to live a chaste life in a very liberal family that encourages that person to actively live the homosexual lifestyle? You know that PBS will never document a story of children who have found faith, struggle with their atheistic parents.
The line “reconcile their love and their beliefs” is another one of those false oppositions like “faith and science.” The reason we can love is that God first loved us. The reason that we believe is that God gave us faith. Love and belief requires no reconciliation. What needs to be reconciled is the truth of that love and faith and our response to it.