Saturday, July 23, 2011

The Case for Limiting Government Recognition to Traditional Relationships

The majority in this country have come to appreciate how gay people deserve the same individual rights and liberties enjoyed by all Americans, including the right to choose where to live, be educated, obtain health care, and work (so long as the work place isn't a religious institution whose doctrine prohibits same-sex behavior).  Integral to such rights is being treated with courtesy, respect, and kindness, which form the core of any civilized and democratic society.

Just like all citizens, gay people deserve these rights because they're human.  Indeed, these are the very inalienable rights described in the Constitution because they exist irrespective of what people do, say, believe, or act, so long as their actions don't infringe on the rights of others or the welfare of society.

For this reason, it's important to distinguish between the person and what the person does.  A person simply is. He/she has no ability to be anything but a person, and is, therefore, deserving of rights, which no one can remove by vote or decree. The natural and immutable – or fixed – conditions of race and gender fall into this category.

A person's behavior is another matter.  Unlike the human condition, which is beyond our control, human behavior is not.  Instead, it begins with an urge, which many perceive as having little to no ability to  control.  However, we can decide whether we’ll act on the urge or engage in the behavior resulting from the urge. Sometimes the behavior is beneficial; sometimes it's not. 

For this reason, the Constitution assigns the public or its elected representatives the right to pass laws governing human behavior for the benefit of the individual and society.  In general, the intent of such laws ranges from prohibiting to encouraging different behaviors, based on their merits or lack of them.  For example, some behaviors furnish positive benefits to individuals and society, and should, therefore, be encouraged with financial and legal benefits.  Examples in this first category would include going to college, starting a business, buying a home, giving to charities, and entering into marriage.    Other behaviors have the potential for harm but banning them would cause an undue burden on personal liberty.  So, we limit these behaviors to consenting adults.  Examples in this second category would be smoking, drinking, gambling, and human sexual relations outside marriage.  Finally, some behaviors are so egregious that we prohibit them.  Examples in this third category would be the taking of life or property.

For some behaviors, the facts are supportive, indicating why they should be placed in the first behavioral category and encouraged with legal and financial benefits.  For example take traditional marriage between a man and a woman. In this relationship,
 people of differing genders offer psychological and health benefits to both partners and to offspring.  Among these are reduced stress, increased lifespan, and the best environment for raising children.  Heterosexual marriage also greatly reduces (if not eliminates) promiscuity and the potential for STDs, AIDS, and AIDS-related diseases. [1][2]

But homosexual unions would not offer these benefits, nor would they stop promiscuity among gay males or increase stability among lesbians.[3] [3A] Among males, the average relationship lasts about 1-½ years, yet still includes up to 8 casual partners per year in addition to the "committed" partner.  Indeed, according to one study, only seven couples out of 156 had no outside encounters, while being committed for less than 5 years.[4][5][[6][,[7]

The effect on marriage would be problematic, according to a study on divorce patterns among Scandinavian same-sex couples.  In Norway and Sweden, the likelihood of divorce between gay men was 1.35 to 1.5 times that of heterosexuals.  For lesbians, this rate was even higher, even though women have a tendency to be much less promiscuous than men.  In these same Scandinavian countries, married lesbians were 2 to 2.67 times more likely to divorce than married heterosexual women.[8] These factors contradict those who agitate for gay marriage, saying it would not impact the institution of marriage in this country.  On the contrary, given the findings of the Scandinavian study, homosexual marriage would diminish the institution below its already weakened state by increasing divorce, burdening the court system with more divorce cases, and saddling children (if any are involved) with the emotional baggage that often comes with divorce.

But divorce would not be the only impact to children. The other is parental influence and its affect on children and societal views. Homosexual parents of children, primarily men, are more likely to abuse or assault one another.
[9]],[10],[11],[12],[13]  Thus, living with either male or female same-sex guardians, children involved in such relationships would be more likely to live in abusive settings or with single parents due to the added risk of divorce. Also children living in homosexual households are more likely to learn that same-sex behavior is acceptable and to practice it themselves. Neither outcome would be healthy for children.  Finally, on a societal basis, this potential increases in a culture that erroneously teaches or considers homosexual behavior to be normal and beneficial. Measures promoting same-sex marriage or partnerships clearly promotes this erroneous teaching.

The basis for this view is American Psychological Association (APA), which supports mainstreaming homosexual behavior.  On its website, the APA currently states that “Although much research has examined the possible genetic, hormonal, developmental, social, and cultural influences on sexual orientation, no findings have emerged that permit scientists to conclude that sexual orientation is determined by any particular factor or factors. Many think that nature and nurture both play complex roles; most people experience little or no sense of choice about their sexual orientation.”  So, in other words, the origin of homosexual orientation is not due solely to genetic or biological factors but also to social influences.

To study the interaction of these factors, researchers at the Karolinska Institute in Sweden and the University of London in Britain recently completed a study into the origin of homosexual behavior. What these researchers discovered was that homosexual orientation appears to result from a combination of genetic, shared environment, and unique environmental factors.  Documenting their findings in a paper entitled, “Genetic and Environmental Effects on Same-sex Sexual Behavior:  A Population Study of Twins in Sweden,”[15] they reported how these factors varied between men and women.  For men, the origin of same-sex behavior was approximately 34 - 39% genetic and 61 – 66% unique environmental, which is thought to consist of hormonal influences occurring before birth and social factors occurring after it.  Shared environment reportedly had no role in causing same-sex behavior among men.  For women, the origin of same-sex behavior was 18 - 19% genetic, 16 – 17% shared environment, and 64 – 69% unique environment.  However, according to the authors, these percentages were to be interpreted with caution because they varied widely among all three parameters for both sexes.
Because of this variability and because familial influences can vary among individuals, having information on children raised by same-sex parents is especially important.  According to research cited in a paper prepared by two researchers at USC, 25% of the adults raised by lesbian parents had a homosexual relationship. In comparison, none of the children raised by heterosexual parents had such a relationship. Based on another statistic, 64% of young adults raised in lesbian households report having considered same-sex relationships (in the past, now, or in the future), compared with only 17% raised in heterosexual families.[16]

These findings are important, since homosexuals, primarily males, are disproportionately at high risk for serious disease, making them ineligible to donate blood or organs, and, therefore, making it unconscionable to cast homosexual behavior in a favorable light or to encourage it.  For males, these diseases are HIV/AIDS (to which they’re at least nine times more susceptible than straight males), Kaposi’s Sarcoma, human papilloma virus, hepatitis A and B, anal cancer, non-hodgkins lymphoma, hodgkins disease, gonorrhea, syphilis, proctitis, proctocolitis, and enteritis. In fact, in terms of AIDS, male homosexuals comprise a small percentage of the population but comprise about 50% of all HIV/AIDS in the U.S. and over 70% of the ailment among American men.[16]  Prophylactics offer males mitigation of, but not complete protection from, these diseases.[17],[18],[19],[20],[21], [22][22A, B, C]

In comparison, lesbians are generally at lesser risk for disease but are still more prone than heterosexual women to some health concerns.  Examples include breast cancer, ovarian cancer, HPV, BV, chlamydia, syphillis, trichomoniasis, and even AIDS/HIV.  Of these diseases, HPV is at least as common in lesbians as in single heterosexual women, while BV is more so[23],[24],[25],[26]

But disease is not the only risk associated with homosexual behavior.  The others include physical damage for males and mental illness for both sexes.  Among males, the majority of homosexual activity involves anal receptive intercourse, which has a tendency to damage the voluntary and involuntary muscles surrounding the rectal area, including the lining of this area.[26][27] Further, male homosexuals have a greater tendency to experience bowel control issues later in life.  For both sexes, homosexuals have a greater tendency to experience mental and emotional disorders, such as major depression, generalized anxiety disorder, and substance abuse/ dependence.[28]

Though the source of these disorders is unclear, social stigma is considered a possibility. Yet two studies appear to cast some doubt on this source. Showing no statistical significance, one study was inconclusive as to whether homosexuals early in life were more vulnerable to psychological morbidity caused by social stress.  The other study showed that Dutch homosexuals were as likely to experience psychological morbidity as their American counterparts, even though the Dutch are either more tolerant of it or more likely to consider homosexuality an equal of heterosexuality.
[28]

For all of these reasons, it’s not only wrong to portray homosexuality as harmless and benign but to categorize it the same as race or gender.  For unlike these immutable traits, homosexuality is not due solely to biological factors, nor is it a natural and fixed condition, the manifestation of which (behavior) is beyond human control. Instead, unlike these traits, homosexuality is a behavioral urge that is acted upon by choice, making it no different than any other human behavior – all of which is subject to law enacted through the democratic process – not judicial fiat.  Further, like all other behaviors, the likelihood for it to occur is heightened through familial and social influences.

Therefore, society shouldn’t codify same-sex behavior in marriage or in domestic partnerships.  For, in doing so, we’re saying that same-sex behavior is positive because marriage is positive, and is, therefore, a behavior that is to be practiced.  Quite clearly, the evidence concerning same-sex behavior says the exact opposite, as it does for other problematic behaviors, like smoking.  For this behavior (smoking), the government has spent millions trying to discourage it but now wants to promote another problematic behavior – same-sex behavior - through marriage. 
Discouraging one behavioral urge because of its harmful effects, while encouraging another behavioral urge, despite its harmful effects, isn't logical. A governmental policy encouraging and legally sanctioning same-sex behavior as “marriage” is contradictory and inconsistent with the goal of a healthy and stable public order and, therefore, makes no sense.  Consequently, the government should remain neutral on same sex behavior and recognize that it belongs within the second category of human activity - allowed but not legally encouraged - where it can be practiced among consenting adults.

References:

[1]Three separate studies report that at least 75% of married men and 85% of married women have never had sexual relations outside their marriages.  These studies include:
A.       Robert T. Michael et al., Sex in America:  A Definitive Survey (Boston: Little, Brown, and Company, 1994).
B.       Michael W. Wiederman, “Extramarital Sex:  Prevalence and Correlates in a National Survey,” Journal of Sex Research 34 (1997): 170.
C.   E.O. Laumann et al., The Social Organization of Sexuality:  Sexual Practices in the United States (Chicago:  University of Chicago Press, 1994), p. 217.

 [2]Testimony Of Barbara Dafoe Whitehead, PhD., Co-Director, National Marriage Project, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey Before The Committee On Health, Education, Labor and Pensions, Subcommittee On Children And Families, U.S. Senate, April 28, 2004 (http://www.virginia.edu/marriageproject/pdfs/print_whitehead_testimonial.pdf )

 [3]A. P. Bell and M. S. Weinberg, Homosexualities: A Study of Diversity Among Men and Women (New York: Simon and Schuster, 1978), pp. 308, 309; See alsoA. P. Bell, M. S. Weinberg, and S. K. Hammersmith, Sexual Preference   (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1981). 

 [3A]Are Gay Male Couples Monogamous Ever After? Psychology Today, September 16, 2008.

 [4]Paul Van de Ven et al., "A Comparative Demographic and Sexual Profile of Older Homosexually Active Men," Journal of Sex Research 34 (1997): 354.

 [5]"Sex Survey Results," Genre (October 1996), quoted in "Survey Finds 40 percent of Gay Men Have Had More Than 40 Sex Partners," Lambda Report, January 1998, p. 20.

 [6]M. Pollak, "Male Homosexuality," in Western Sexuality: Practice and Precept in Past and Present Times, ed. P. Aries and A. Bejin, translated by Anthony Forster (New York, NY: B. Blackwell, 1985), pp. 40-61, cited by Joseph Nicolosi in Reparative Therapy of Male Homosexuality (Northvale, New Jersey: Jason Aronson Inc., 1991), pp. 124, 125.

 [7]Xiridou M, Geskus R, de Wit J, Coutinho R, Kretzschmar M, “The contribution of steady and casual partnerships to the incidence of HIV infection among homosexual men in Amsterdam,” AIDS 2003, 17:1029-1038 (p. 1031)


 [9]Lettie L. Lockhart et al., “Letting out the Secret:  Violence in Lesbian Relationships,” Journal of Interpersonal Violence 9 (1994): 469-492

[10]Gwat Yong Lie and Sabrina Gentlewarrier, “Intimate Violence in Lesbian Relationships:  Discussion of Survey Findings and Practice Implications,” Journal of Social Service Research 15 (1991): 41-59.
  


[11]D. Island and P. Letellier, Men Who Beat the Men Who Love Them:  Battered Gay Men and Domestic Violence (New York:  Haworth Press, 1991), p. 14.
[12]http://www.apa.org/pi/women/programs/violence/partner-violence.pdf  pgs. 14  and 15


 [14]Långström, N., Rahman, Q., Carlström, E., Lichtenstein, P. (2008).  Genetic and   Environmental Effects on Same-sex Behavior:  A Population Study of Twins in Sweden . Archives of Sexual Behavior, Online Version (90), No. 27

[16] Judith Stacey and Timothy J. Biblarz, "Does the 'Sexual Orientation' of Parents Matte?" American Sociological Review, Vol. 66, April, pp. 159-183.


[18]  According to at least one study, the incidence of HIV/AIDS actually increases in so-called “committed” homosexual relationships in comparison to transient ones: Xiridou M, Geskus R, de Wit J, Coutinho R, Kretzschmar M, “The contribution of steady and casual partnerships to the incidence of HIV infection among homosexual men in Amsterdam,” AIDS 2003, 17:1029-1038 (p. 1031)

[19] “Sexual Practices, Sexually Transmitted Diseases, and the Incidences of Anal Cancer,” New England Journal of Medicine, 1987.



[20] “Healthy People 2010 Companion Document For Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender (LGBT) Health,” Gay and Lesbian Medical Association and National Coalition for LGBT Health, April 2001.

[21]“Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Health: Findings and Concerns, January 2000, Conference Edition (work in progress),” Gay and Lesbian Medical Association and Columbia University Joseph L. Mailman School of Public Health, Center for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Health.

[22] National Guideline Clearing House - Proctitis, proctocolitis, and enteritis (http://depts.washington.edu/nnptc/online_training/std_handbook/pdfs/ch4_proctitis.pdf)

[22A]Mays, Vicki and Susan Cochran, 2011. Sexual Orientation and Mortality Among US Men Aged 17 to 59 Years: Results From the National Health and Nutrition Examination

[22B] Sexual Behavior Does Not Explain Varying HIV Rates Among Gay And Straight Men, Medline News Today, Dec. 13, 2007. (http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/82330.php)

[22C] Goodreau, Steven M. and Matthew R Golden, 2007. "Biological and demographic causes of high HIV and sexually transmitted disease prevalence in men who have sex with men," Sex Transm Infect 2007; Vol. 83, Section 6:458-462 doi:10.1136/sti.2007.025627 (http://sti.bmj.com/content/83/6/458.abstract)

[23]http://www.cdc.gov/stdconference/2002/Slides/A4Marrazzo.pdf


[25]http://www.mautnerproject.org/health_info/breast_cancer.cfm
http://www.mautnerproject.org/health_info/cervical_cancer.cfm 

[26]According to gayhealth.com, other methods of gay relations also expose the practitioner to disease.

[27]A.P.M. Coxon et al., “Sex Role Separation in Diaries of Homosexual Men,” AIDS, July 1993, pp. 877-882.

[28]S. Cochran, “Emerging Issues in Research on Lesbians’ and Gay Men’s Mental Health:  Does Sexual Orientation Really Matter?” American Psychologist, November 2001.


46 comments:

  1. You, sir, are a bigot wrapped in faulty logic.

    ReplyDelete
  2. “Semyon Suslov” is an ignorant, fearful bigot of the first order.

    Framing a web page with books does not make the page scholarly, and arguing that gay people deserve human rights in his first paragraphs doesn’t justify the Nazi-like attitudes in his later paragraphs.

    Suslov is ignorant in calling sexual orientation a “behavior” instead of the immutable characteristic that it is, and in assuming that the benefits that can accrue from opposite-sex marriage do not also accrue in same-sex marriage. Likewise, Suslov’s assumption that weddings have different effects upon opposite-sex couples than they have on same-sex couples is false.

    Same-sex couples often have children from prior marriages, adoption, and/or surrogacy, so animal husbandry (breeding) is no argument against same-sex marriage.

    Exposure to other people who are bisexual, lesbian, or gay does not affect a person’s own sexual orientation, so the assumption that people “catch” homosexuality as if it were a communicable illness is false.

    There are fewer red-heads (4%) than there are LGBT people (8%), but we don’t write federal regulations making them outlaws. African-Americans divorce more often than some other ethnic groups, but we don’t deny them the right to marry. Jews sometimes inherit genetically based illness, but we don’t deny them the right to procreate. Using population prevalence, divorce rates, or health statistics as a basis for conferring or denying basic human rights is un-democratic and immoral.

    Finally, Suslov is wrong to assume that allowing LGBT people their human right to marry causes “public disorder.” 21 states covering 130 million Americans have one or more forms of marriage equality: 7 have same-sex marriage (CT, DC, IA, MA, NH, NY, VT); 5 have civil unions (DE, HI, IL, NJ, RI); 9 have domestic partnership (CA, CO, MD, ME, NV, NM, OR, WA, WI). No public disorder has occurred.

    Semyon Suslov’s views are based on stereotypes, falsehoods, and junk science in the same ways that Nazi policies were.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies

    1. I've been dating my girl for 5 years and we have just broke up because she told me she likes someone else but she say she still loves me... the next week she left the house and said she needs to find herself??? and i wanted her to be with me by living were i live, forget about her ex's, having a good job and being in a healthy relationship which leads to marriage and kids. but she was planning to leave me since and when i knew about her plan i gave her space maybe she will come back?? but if she didn't then i had to find help, a spell caster to help me bring her back so i did contacted i was giving this usa number +15036626930 and this email address dr.marnish@yahoo.com after 3 days of casting his spell my girlfriend returned back to crying to me that she will never make a step without me again, that she will always love me till death. i am still surprised how dr.marnish did the love spell
      Tremeeka

      Delete
  3. OK. Even though you can't figure out how to post something with more than 200 characters, you're not the usual kind of troll on this website so I'll indulge you. The whole point I'm making is that your arguments are invalid and don't deserve a point by point rebuttal. They are invalid because you took portions of studies (some outdated) and presented them out of context to support something you wanted them to say not what they were meant to say. Anyone can do that. I can find a study that says the sky is gray everyday no matter if the sun is out. Cite it and post it in my blog about how wrong you are and right I am. If I leave out the fact that the study was on how color blind people see the world then it's baseless. I read all your articles, even the one from 1978. Do you suppose that things have changed since 1978? What about the last 20 years? To even continue to reference a book from 1978 or 1981 to describe the homosexual relationship dynamics is ludicrous. There, I used a big word like you do. Even the studies on how people "become" homosexuals were by admission of the authors inconclusive. The results of the studies also only relate to where the studies were conducted. Within a single culture in a specific area. If you take that same study methodology outside Europe it would produce different results. Gay males are less promiscuous in Canada then anywhere in the world. So any study conducted in Canada would only relate to Canada. All I'm saying is that your studies are all over the map, literally. Even within our own country studies involving culture would contrast. If you did some study in Seattle or San Francisco you would likely get a similar result. The same study in Omaha Nebraska and Waco Texas would look very different. In the end statistics based on studies are subject the biases of those conducting the studies anyway. What questions did they ask those in the studies? How did they word the questions? All of those things effect the outcome. Your arguments are in no way as bombproof as you make them sound just by citing reputable news sources and ancient tomes on homosexuality in the 70's.
    All of your arguments reek of hate too. Those "disgusting pictures" and your whole diatribe on how homosexuality will explode if we allow them to marry each other and destroy our society. Don't you think it sounds a little paranoid. Homosexuality has been around for a few years and they have been living together for some time now and having kids and now actually marrying. Where is the study on how the world is spiraling down the tubes since all this gayness was allowed to run unchecked and free. If that study was out there you would have cited it. There is no study like that though, mainly because homosexuality has always been there and always will be. It is not the scourge of society as you think it is. It's just people living their lives the way they want to. They are asking for a few rights that to me seem pretty simple. I have those rights and I'm not better than someone who is gay. Why do you really care? Someone told you it was wrong based on a book written 2000 years ago that still condones stoning. My parents taught me to live and let live. That's in your book too..

    ReplyDelete
  4. 11Truckman, Sigmund Freud and Charles Darwin's work and writings were 100 years ago and longer and are greatly valued today. So your stating that something written in the 1970's is ancient is laughable. Homosexuality has changed very little in the last 40 years. Heck homosexuality has changed very little in all its history for that matter.

    You betray your bias when in your last couple of sentences you belittle the Bible. You humanist thinkers can do and say all you want to but God is real and he will have the last say in human history. He will bless and raise up any society that has Godly moralistic values and has and will destroy all societies which choose to ignore the creator of all things.

    Semyon Suslov has posted a valuable and true assessment of homosexuality and its place in a society.

    All you liberals do is label all opposition with the hate word. I've got news for you, Semyon can think certain pictures as disgusting or repulsive even without it being hate at all. Name calling and labeling is just a bullying tactic to batter down those who oppose, a child's ploy.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Ned Flaherty your arguments are flawed. Your bringing up redheads and African Americans and such to make the claim for homosexuals is severely flawed. People with physical traits like hair color and skin color are born that way and cannot be compared to homosexuals who are not homosexual by genetics but created largely by outside forces such as environment.

    Just stating 'Suslov is ignorant in calling sexual orientation a “behavior” instead of the immutable characteristic that it is, ' doesn't make it so. Suslov is correct in his assessments and you have led with misinformation and smoke and mirrors.

    Your statement, 'Exposure to other people who are bisexual, lesbian, or gay does not affect a person’s own sexual orientation, so the assumption that people “catch” homosexuality as if it were a communicable illness is false.' is also false. Basic psychology will tell you that people are influenced by their environment and peers and thus influence others to this lifestyle.

    Of course being the liberal that you are you had to pin the Nazi label on him just to demonize the opposing point of view. Those who resort to those tactics usually do so because they don't have much else to solidly make their case and try to throw people off with negative labels.

    ReplyDelete
  6. I agree with Truckman that a point-by-point rebuttal is more than is needed. I've also gone through Suslov's essay and many of the references in the past, and it would take an essay twice (thrice?) as long as his to document all the cherry-picking, flawed logic, and distortions. But a few illustrative examples might be worthwhile.

    (1) One of the very first references he uses to portray gay men negatively is the Van de Ven study (ref.4), used to document extremely high rates of promiscuity among gay men. What Suslov doesn't tell you is that the sample of gay men used in the study were found at places like brothels, porn shops, and massage parlors. (Though the author of the paper readily acknowledges this severe limitation in his sampling methodology.) If you were to do a study of straight men who frequent such places, you'd probably find high levels of promiscuity too.

    (2) Suslov also documents high levels of STDs among gay men, referencing CDC studies. What Suslov doesn't tell you is, if you actually go to the CDC site you will also find that they attribute these higher STD rates to things like social stigmatization and lack of proper education. And if you dig into their numbers you will also find that African Americans experience comparable levels of HIV/AIDS ... and yet Suslov doesn't suggest that blacks be prohibited from marrying, or that blacks are more inherently promiscuous. He simply ignores the rather obvious fact that social stigmatization has serious negative impacts on people (both gay and black). As he often does, he confuses statistical correlation with causation.

    ReplyDelete
  7. (3) Suslov also uses the Stacey report (ref.16) to substantiate a claim that children raised by same-gender couples are much more likely to enter into same-gender relationships later in life. There may be some truth in that, though as even Stacey admits, it is a conclusion that has not been supported by most other studies .. a point Suslov fails to mention. What Suslov also doesn't tell you is that Stacey attributes most of the differences in their study not to some sort of transformation of kids into gays, but more a matter of children being free to grow up to live a healthy life according to whatever orientation they actually are. For example, they say "homophobia and discrimination are the chief reasons why parental sexual orientation matters at all." They also note that their study shows that "most of the differences cannot be considered deficits from any legitimate public policy perspective" but instead "favor the children of lesbigay parents." A good example of Suslov's cherry-picking.

    (4) Suslov also attempts to downplay the role of social stigma in increased rates emotional and psychological problems in gay men, by referring to a paper by Cochran (ref.28). Suslov goes so far as to say Cochran showed that Dutch homosexuals were experience the same levels of psychological morbidity as their American counterparts, even though homosexuality is much more accepted in the Netherlands. In fact, that is completely untrue. Cochran makes no such assertion at all. Cochran does present results from several other studies, including US and Dutch surveys, but there is no attempt to compare morbidity at all. And in fact, no quantitative comparisons are even possible since, as Cochran explicitly states, the metrics used to determine both sexual orientation and morbidity were completely different in the various studies. Cochran does, however, identify social stigma as a key factor in increased psychological morbidity. And the Netherlands paper referred to by Cochran (Sandfort) also attributes the increased levels of psychological morbidity in the Netherlands to social stigma there, and says the problems will possibly be worse in other western countries where stigmatization is even more of a problem. Both Cochran and Sandfort directly contradict Suslov's attempt to minimize social stigmatization as a key issue, even though Suslov uses one directly, and the other indirectly, to support his claim.

    Like I said, these are just illustrative examples, but hopefully are enough to highlight just how disingenuous Suslov's arguments are. At the very least, if anybody is tempted to read this essay and take it at all seriously, I hope these examples will help them realize they also need to dig deeply into each and every reference used.

    ReplyDelete
  8. In response to OldDave's critique No. 4, I went through reference 28 to carefully choose paragraphs that were representative of what the paper stated, being as careful as I could to not bias the summary one way or another. Here's the excerpts I chose and the pages from which they originated:


    Page 2, First sentence of 3rd paragraph

    "Research designs that could sample without reference to participation in gay-related social structures are readily available and have been used for years to estimate the mental health of the American population (Manderscheid &
    Sonnenschein, 1996)."

    Last paragraph, page 2

    "Beginning a few years ago, the field witnessed the introduction of a new level of methodological rigor, as researchers began to revisit the ways in which homosexuality
    may function as a risk indicator for psychiatric disorders."

    Page 4, Last Paragraph

    "Finally, even though it appears that lesbians and gay men experience somewhat greater risk for mental health disorders, the reasons for this are not known. Although the observed differences are often attributed to the effects of social stigma, only one population-based study (Mays & Cochran, in press) has actually examined
    evidence for this. In that study, my colleague and I controlled for differences in discrimination experiences between lesbian, gay, and bisexual adults and heterosexual adults and, in doing so, greatly attenuated differences in mental health morbidity indicators between the two groups. Nevertheless, only further studies can answer the host of questions that remain, including what factors generate this possible excess risk."

    Page 9, 2nd Paragraph, under "Where Does the Field Go From Here"

    First, there is fairly good evidence of elevated risk for depression and suicide attempts in lesbians and gay men, as well as evidence that this perhaps holds true for other disorders as well, such as for substance use disorders in
    lesbians. However, it is not known why this is so, and, clearly, the majority of lesbians and gay men represented in the recent studies did not evidence positive histories of
    psychological morbidity. Evidence linking stress arising from social stigma or victimization and psychiatric morbidity is still in an embryonic state, but recent findings (Mays & Cochran, in press; Meyer, 1995) are consistent with the social causation of greater risk."

    In conclusion, Dr. Cochran states that research irrefutably proves that homosexuals are more likely experience psychological morbidity than heterosexuals. They go on to say that the reason is not known, except that their own subsequent research suggests that social stigma is consistent with greater risk of these ailments.

    In comparison, I do say that social stigma is a possibility, which - to be fair - could be viewed by some as a weaker statement than that made by Cochran in ref. 28. I agree, by the way that social stigma can and does probably play a role, based on this paper and common sense. However, Cochran does not say, as OldDave asserts, that social stigma is a "key factor." Rather, she states that the reasons for higher psychological morbidity are not known - something that OldDave conveniently leaves out.

    ReplyDelete
  9. In response to OldDave's critique No. 2, I offer the following excerpts from the CDC website, which corresponds to my reference No. 17:


    "Gay, Bisexual, and Other Men Who Have Sex with Men (MSM):

    By risk group, gay, bisexual, and other MSM of all races remain the population most severely affected by HIV.

    MSM account for more than half (53%) of all new HIV infections in the U.S. each year, as well as nearly half (48%) of people living with HIV.

    While CDC estimates that MSM account for just 4% of the US male population aged 13 and older, the rate of new HIV diagnoses among MSM in the US is more than 44 times that of other men and more than 40 times that of women.

    White MSM account for the largest number of annual new HIV infections of any group in the US, followed closely by black MSM.

    MSM is the only risk group in the U.S. in which new HIV infections have been increasing since the early 1990s."

    Here's what the same website says about the occurrence of HIV/AIDS among African Americans:

    "Among racial/ethnic groups, African Americans face the most severe burden of HIV and AIDS in the nation.

    While blacks represent approximately 12% of the U.S. population, they account for almost half (46%) of people living with HIV in the US, as well as nearly half (45%) of new infections each year.

    HIV infections among blacks overall have been roughly stable since the early 1990s.

    At some point in their life, approximately one in 16 black men will be diagnosed with HIV, as will one in 30 black women.

    The rate of new HIV infections for black men is about six times as high as that of white men, nearly three times that of Hispanic/Latino men, and more than twice that of black women.

    The HIV incidence rate for black women is nearly 15 times as high as that of white women, and nearly four times that of Hispanic/Latino women."

    In conclusion, the CDC website is clear. Given how homosexuals comprise only 4% of the population but involve over 50% of all HIV/AIDS in the U.S. and how they're 44 times as likely on a per person basis to contract HIV/AIDS, the CDC states that "...MSM of all races remain the population most severely affected by HIV.." much more so than African Americans, especially since this group would include black MSM because they also exist in the African American grouping.

    Again, another example of where OldDave mischaracterizes the facts to make it appear as if I've been dishonest in summarizing the health risks associated with same sex behavior.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You *have* misused the facts to draw an incorrect conclusion. Here is why:

      You have not presented data on the STD rates of married homosexual males; you have only presented data on the STD rates of unmarried homosexual males. (Your sources 1 to 7 compare married straight couples with unmarried gay couples.) Most of the above data on STDs among gay males reflect trends before gays could first marry anywhere in the U.S., which was 2004. Obviously, because these data overwhelmingly reflect the behaviour of gay males who haven't been allowed to marry, they do not show us whether gay marriage helps reduce the rate of STDs.

      You cannot take data on STD rates among unmarried gay males and use them to show that gay marriage doesn't reduce STD rates. In order to prove this hypothesis, you actually have to let gays marry first, and then you have to look at those married gay males to see whether the STD rates have been reduced. So far you haven't proved this, because you've only looked at STD rates among unmarried gay couples.

      So you don't yet know whether letting gay males marry will reduce their STD rates: you're making it impossible to obtain the data you would need to prove this point, because you don't want to let them marry in the first place. It's like saying you want to prove that women are stupider than men, but refusing to let women attend university to prove whether or not they are stupider than men.

      It doesn't make any sense.

      Delete
  10. In response to OldDave's critique number 3:

    Stacy and Biblarz are quite clear in stating that children raised in homosexual households are far more likely to either consider having a same-sex relationship or engaging in the behavior. OldDave's assertion that "...it is a conclusion that has not been supported by most other studies..." is because no other study like Stacy and Biblarz's had been done up until that time, since the purpose of their paper was to see beyond the bias in the studies favoring homosexual parenting to see if there was an actual difference in children raised by homosexual vs. heterosexual parents. Again, a blatant mischaracterization of the study by OldDave.

    Yet another mischaracterization by OldDave concerns that children raised in homosexual households are more "free" to develop their sexual "identities" and that "most of the differences cannot be considered deficits from any legitimate public policy perspective" but instead "favor the children of lesbigay parents..." are the author's opinions, especially that of Judith Stacy, who is against marriage, is for "sexual freedom and expression," and having a strictly heterosexual outcome between men and women. In other words, the author's science is trustworthy but the opinion above is just that - opinion - and one that completely ignores the serious health risks associated with same-sex behavior.

    ReplyDelete
  11. Continuing from my response to OldDave's critique 2, the CDC website does say that stigma may play a role in the epidemic of HIV/AIDS among gay men. Other possibilities are poverty and racism, according to the CDC. However to claim or strongly imply, as OldDave does, that these factors are the primary reason for the high rate of HIV/AIDS among MSM isn't plausible, for the following reasons:

    1. As a group homosexuals and lesbians tend to me educated and more financially secure than the average American.

    2. The large majority of gay people live in cities, especially in places, like San Francisco, New York, Los Angeles, and Chicago, where any form of discouragement or mistreatment of homosexuals seeking treatment is prohibited - and rightfully so.

    3. The CDC website says that homophobia and stigma may play a role. But notice the auxillary verb MAY.

    This is not to say that the factors mentioned in the CDC website don't play a role. They probably do but not to the degree that OldDave would have us believe. Rather, the primary reasons are:

    1. Men are inherently more promiscuous than women, whether gay or straight. However, in heterosexual men, this condition is dampened by women, who are inherently much less promiscuous. This dampening effect does not occur among homosexual males.

    2. Same-sex behavior involves human physiology that's not designed for same-sex interaction, which results in a high risk of bodily damage and the primary means by which serious disease, like HIV/AIDS, hepatitis, certain cancers, and STDS are transmitted.

    ReplyDelete
  12. In response to OldDave's critique number 1,

    The results of the Paul Van de Ven study (my reference number 4) is corroborated by other references in my essay, including this one:

    Are Gay Male Couples Monogamous Ever After? Psychology Today, September 16, 2008.

    ...and

    the Amsterdam Cohort Study, which is cited in my reference number 7.

    ReplyDelete
  13. In further response to OldDave's critiques, I offering the following paper, entitled,

    "Attitudes Toward Nomarital Sex in 24 Countries"

    by Eric D. Widmer, Judith Treas, Robert Newcomb
    in Journal of Sex Research / Nov, 1998

    Here's an excerpt from page 7 of the online version of the paper (1):

    "The Netherlands, Norway, the Czech Republic, Canada, and Spain are distinguished by their tolerance for homosexual sex, but there are differences within the Homosexual Permissives' cluster as well. Most countries which register high levels of tolerance toward homosexuality are also deeply divided. While big shares of the population see nothing wrong with same-sex relations, significant segments consider homosexuality to be always wrong. The exception is the Netherlands, where the majority of residents have come to accept the more tolerant views. A number of factors have been cited to account for Dutch open-mindedness on sexual matters. Although opposition of conservative religious elements deters broad acceptance of homosexuality in many countries, Oosterhuis (1996) notes that Dutch Christian communities have been a progressive force in redefining homosexuality from a sin to a personal issue warranting Christian compassion. To explain permissive Dutch attitudes, others have commented on the unusually long history of the Dutch homosexual movement (Tielman, 1987), the self-conscious pluralism of the Netherlands, the secularism of its population, and the candor and coverage of sexual topics in the mass media (Jones et al., 1986)."

    (1) - Link to article:

    http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m2372/is_4_35/ai_53390352/pg_7/

    So to say, as OldDave implies, that the high rate of mental and emotional maladies among homosexuals in the U.S. and the Netherlands is primarily due to social stigmatizm is wrong. It simply can't be, given the fact that homosexuals in the Netherlands enjoy a high rate of acceptance - for all intents and purposes, practically equal to that of heterosexuals.

    ReplyDelete
  14. Looks like this blog is getting about the traffic it deserves.

    ReplyDelete
  15. Looks like a fair amount of emotional opposition.

    I would like to speak briefly on social influence. If you smoke then your children are much more likely to smoke. I don't think the homosexuals should be persecuted but I don't feel that society should embrace it. The societal embrace of sexual promiscuity in general has led to many teenagers and preteens being not just sexually active but sexually promiscuous. I think we all should know that this is not a healthy way to live especially for some one so young to practice such behaviors.
    Society should not promote unhealthy behavior regardless of how one might feel about it personally or religiously.

    Don't hate the homosexuals but don't hate marriage or what it is meant to be.

    ReplyDelete
  16. 1) Sources 1 - 7 do not prove that heterosexual marriage encourages monogamy and prevents disease better than homosexual marriage, because they do not compare heterosexual marriage with homosexual marriage. They compare heterosexual marriage with *unmarried homosexual couples*. Obviously, you cannot prove that heterosexual marriage is better than homosexual marriage when you are not even looking at homosexual marriage in the first place. So those sources don't prove that heterosexual marriage encourages monogamy and prevents disease better than homosexual marriage.

    2)Source 8 does not show that homosexual marriage fails to encourage monogamy and loyalty in gay couples; it only shows that gay couples in Scandinavia have a higher divorce rate than heterosexual couples. That their divorce rate might be higher does not mean that marriage does not make them more monogamous. Married gay people might still be far more monogamous and long-lasting than unmarried gay people. Besides, it is one study conducted in Scandinavia. That is hardly generalizable, it isn't cross-sectional, and it isn't longitudinal.

    3) References 9 to 13 do *not* show that "[h]omosexual parents of children, primarily men, are more likely to abuse or assault one another", as your article claims. That is blatantly false. 9 to 11 of these references describe the nature of same-sex domestic violence; they do *not* say that gay parents abuse one another more than straight parents, and hence they do not say that children of gay parents witness more violence than children of straight parents. What they may suggest is that children witness more violence by males than by females. So that literature says nothing about gays being inherently more violent than straights.

    4) Pp. 14 and 15 of Source 12 does *not* show that lesbian relationships involve more domestic abuse than male-female relationships. While it shows that male-male relationships involve slightly more violence than male-female relationships, it says the *opposite* for lesbian relationships: "Women reported less intimate partner violence in same-sex relationships than in heterosexual relationships" (p. 15). In addition, the researchers showed that women in lesbian relationships were three times more likely to be assaulted by *men* over their lifetimes than the lesbians they were in the relationship with at the time. You can't point out the slightly higher rate of domestic violence among male-male relationships and totally ignore the *lower* rate of violence in lesbian relationships. The former is cancelled out by the latter.

    Again, we're not even comparing heterosexual marriage with homosexual marriage; we're comparing heterosexual marriage with unmarried homosexual couples. So it still doesn't say what the effects of homosexual *marriage* are.

    And even more, that study only shows that men are more violent than women, not that gay people are more violent than straight people; it shows that men need to become less violent, not that gay people do.

    Finally, *reported* prevalence isn't the same as *actual* prevalence. Women married to men might report abuse less often than men married to other men, or women married to other women, because heterosexual relationships tend more often to involve a male dominating a female. So maybe gay people just report it more often than straight women. That actually suggests that they're *dealing* with the problem when it does occur.

    So you've entirely overlooked the nuances and significance of these data and interpreted them in the way that you want.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. From Brandon:

      "1) Sources 1 - 7 do not prove that heterosexual marriage encourages monogamy and prevents disease better than homosexual marriage, because they do not compare heterosexual marriage with homosexual marriage. They compare heterosexual marriage with *unmarried heterosexual couples*. Obviously, you cannot prove that heterosexual marriage is better than homosexual marriage when you are not even looking at homosexual marriage in the first place. So those sources don't prove that heterosexual marriage encourages monogamy and prevents disease better than homosexual marriage."
      _________________________________________

      From Me:

      Here are links to sources proving that non-monogamy is common in male homosexual "marriages" and is more prevalent among lesbian "marriages" than among straight women in real marriages:

      http://crgs.sfsu.edu/pdf/TN_IAC_2010_final_poster[1].pdf

      http://www.nytimes.com/2010/01/29/us/29sfmetro.htmlhttp://ww

      These articles and the study not only document how non-monogamy is the norm in male homosexual marriages but confirm the studies cited in my blog, stating that adultery in real marriages is about 20 to 25% among males and about 15% among females. Further, when that non-monogamy occurs, it's very infrequent. In comparison, it's commong and serial in gay male "marriages."

      Delete
    2. From Brandon Arkell:

      Source 8 does not show that homosexual marriage fails to encourage monogamy and loyalty in gay couples; it only shows that gay couples in Scandinavia have a higher divorce rate than heterosexual couples. That their divorce rate might be higher does not mean that marriage does not make them more monogamous. Besides, it is one study conducted in Scandinavia. That is hardly generalizable.
      ________________________________

      My previous post earlier this evening links studies, showing that gay men in homosexual "marriages" remain promiscuous and that lesbians in the same type of "marriages" are more promiscuous than heterosexual women in real marriages.

      As for the study on same-sex divorce in Sweden and Norway, the authors state the following on page 18:

      "Nevertheless, we find that many of
      the various demographic characteristics of our Scandinavian couples resemble those
      found for other populations of same-sex couples, such as co-residing people of the
      same sex in the US (Black et al. 2000). Evidently, some aspects of gay and lesbian
      life styles seem to be of such a common nature that they appear regardless of the type
      of data at hand."

      Thus, there's no plausible reason to believe that the propensity for same-sex divorce in these countries is any different than here in the U.S. as the author of this article indicates in risk factors for divorce in this country:

      http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2010/05/19/15-ways-to-predict-divorce.html

      Delete
    3. From Branden Arkell:

      3) References 9 to 13 do *not* show that "[h]omosexual parents of children, primarily men, are more likely to abuse or assault one another", as your article claims. That is blatantly false. 9 to 11 of these references describe the nature of same-sex domestic violence; they do *not* say that gay parents abuse children more than straight parents.

      ___________________________

      These references do indeed support the conclusion that violence is more prevalent in male same-sex relationships than among heterosexual relationships. Further, I never said that such violence is transferred on to the children. Rather, what I did say was that children living with male same-sex partners are more likely to live in a setting in which violence is prevalent. This factor, in and of itself, (as I stated) is why living in same sex households or having same-sex parents is not a good idea.

      Delete
    4. From Brandon Arkell:

      "4) Pp. 14 and 15 of Source 12 does *not* show that lesbian relationships involve more domestic abuse than male-female relationships. While it shows that male-male relationships involve slightly more violence than male-female relationships, it says the *opposite* for lesbian relationships: "Women reported less intimate partner violence in same-sex relationships than in heterosexual relationships" (p. 15). In addition, the researchers showed that women in lesbian relationships were three times more likely to be assaulted by *men* over their lifetimes than the lesbians they were in the relationship with at the time. You can't point out the slightly higher rate of domestic violence among male-male relationships and totally ignore the *lower* rate of violence in lesbian relationships. The former is cancelled out by the latter."
      _______________________________

      From Me:

      Here's an excerpt from the ninth paragraph of marriage-onemanandonewoman.blogspot.com:

      "...Homosexual parents of children, primarily men, are more likely to abuse or assault one another.[9]],[10],[11],[12],[13] Thus, living with either male or female same-sex guardians, children involved in such relationships would be more likely to live in abusive settings or with single parents due to the added risk of divorce..."

      Please notice that I never said that lesbians in homosexual relationships have a higher incidence of violence than straight women in real marriages. What I did say was that children living with same-sex guardians were more likely to live in abusive settings [between the parents - not the kids - if the "parents" were two men] or with only one "parent," since divorce occurs at a much higher rate in "marriages" between two gay men or two lesbians.

      So Brandon either misread, misinterpreted, or deliberately mischaracterized what I wrote.

      Delete
    5. From Brandon Arkell:

      ..Again, we're not even comparing heterosexual marriage with homosexual marriage; we're comparing heterosexual marriage with unmarried homosexual couples. So it still doesn't say what the effects of homosexual *marriage* are.

      And even more, that study only shows that men are more violent than women, not that gay people are more violent than straight people; it shows that men need to become less violent, not that gay people do...
      ____________________________________

      From Me:

      I partially disagree with what you said in the first paragraph. My disagreement concerns non-monogamy in gay "marriages." As indicated in that post of 10:13PM, the studies I cited specifically referred to gay "marriages" between two men and showed that non-monogamy was the norm for these "marriages." Also, the scandanavian study, showing the high rate of divorce among homosexuals in comparison to the much lower rate among heterosexuals is valid because the former is for all intents and purposes "married" in accordance with the registered partnership that was in effect at that time.

      Where I agree is that some of the research does technically compare married heterosexual couples with non-married homosexual couples. Nonetheless, if there's truly no difference between these two types of relationships, as proponents of same-sex "marriage" claim, then we should see little to no difference between the two in terms of promiscuity, divorce, violence, or other forms of abuse, such as verbal or psychological, regardless of their marriage status, since it's not plausible that being officially "married" will somehow cause these three factors to suddenly be the same as those in heterosexual marriages.

      The fact is that we don't. Instead, research shows that these three factors are much more common in same-sex relationships because they lacking the stabilizing and complementary effects of the two sexes combining together. Indeed, it's the inherent flaws and incompatibility in same-sex relationships, themselves, not the lack of an external force, like marriage, that causes the sociological problems mentioned above to be more prevalent in same-sex than in opposite-sex relationships.

      Delete
  17. 5) Soure 13 does not show that gay marriage is more violent than heterosexual marriage either--again, because it doesn't even *mention* gay marriage. It only mentions unmarried gay couples. Funnily, this source *also* reports that lesbian couples experience less violence than straight couples, counterbalancing any higher rate of such violence among male-male couples. Again, this means that there is a male-female discrepancy, not a gay-straight one. So, no, this source doesn't show that children of homosexual marriages experience more violence than children of heterosexual marriages, either; it shows that children experience more violence on the part of males than on the part of females. Once more, what this means is that men need to become less violent, not that gay people do.

    6) I should also point out that Source 12 on your reference list actually suggests that gay marriage and gay rights would be a *solution* to same-sex domestic violence, and that discrimination actually makes the problem *worse*:

    "The legal system does not afford the same protection to members of same gender partner violence in many states (daLuz, 1994; Fray-Witzer, 1999, Lundy, 1999; NCVAP 1997). According to the National Coalition of Anti-Violence Programs (NCAVP, 1997), in 7 states same-gendered relationships do not qualify as "domestic." Even though state laws cover homosexual as well as heterosexual domestic violence, the chances are that laws are not enforced equally and that same-sex litigants are treated with less dignity, sympathy, and respect that their heterosexual counterparts (Lundy, 1999). Many lesbian, gay and bisexual individuals feel that the legal system supports violence against them. They may have lost custody of their children because of their sexual orientation and may receive no protection from discrimination in housing or employment. Sodomy laws and anti-gay
    legislation like the Defense of Marriage Act which denies marriage rights to same sex couples may further alienate lesbian, gay and bisexual people from the legal system (Allen & Leventhal, 1999). The applicability of battered woman's syndrome has been strongly contested in lesbian cases and we do not know much about its use with gay male cases(see Goldfarb, 1996). In many states, homosexuals are implicitly excluded from legal protections (i.e., civil protection order laws) and there are fewer social services available for battered lesbians and gay men. Forty-eight jurisdictions provide protection where the victim and abuser cohabit, but six of these laws explicitly exclude homosexual couples (Murphy, 1995) There are only 12 states that provide protection for homosexual victims of intimate violence (Murphy, 1995)"

    These findings don't support the claim you're making; they *contrradict* it. They show that anti-gay laws like DOMA alienate gays and lesbians from the legal system, and that letting gays marry and have other rights would actually provide them better resources. Obviously a group of people are not going to resolve these issues if they are denied the resources and legal protections to do so.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. From Brandon Arkell:

      "5) Soure 13 does not show that gay marriage is more violent than heterosexual marriage either--again, because it doesn't even *mention* gay marriage. It only mentions unmarried gay couples. Funnily, this source *also* reports that lesbian couples experience less violence than straight couples, counterbalancing any higher rate of such violence among male-male couples. Again, this means that there is a male-female discrepancy, not a gay-straight one. So, no, this source doesn't show that children of homosexual marriages experience more violence than children of heterosexual marriages, either; it shows that children experience more violence on the part of males than on the part of females. Once more, what this means is that men need to become less violent, not that gay people do."
      __________________________________

      From Me:

      I disagree with your analysis that somehow the lesser violence in lesbian homosexual relationships balances the greater violence in male homosexual relationships. While the latter is more physical in expressing their disagreements, the former is likely to be more verbal or psychological in expressing them, since such practices are more common among women than men. Indeed, this has to be the case, since divorce among "married" lesbians is almost twice that of "married" gay men and almost three times that of men and women in heterosexual marriages.

      So, in either event, children of same-sex "parents" are more likely than children of opposite-sex parents to live in abusive settings where the abuse is between the parents, in one form or another, whether it be psychological, verbal, or physical. Further, because of this factor and possibly others, children of same-sex "parents" are more likely to live in broken homes since gay "marriages" are far more likely to end in divorce than straight marriages.

      Finally, it's very presumptuous to say that, when it comes to children, the lesser violence of lesbian relationships somehow balances the greater violence of male homosexual relationships. To the children, it doesn't matter. The fact is that they're living in a volatile and unstable home, characterized by more psychological/verbal disagreements in ones headed by lesbians and more physical arguments in ones headed by two gay men. Indeed, this points out the selfish nature behind gay "marriage." It's obviously more about what the adults "want" than what's truly best for the children.

      Delete
    2. From Brandon Arkell:

      6) I should also point out that Source 12 on your reference list actually suggests that gay marriage and gay rights would be a *solution* to same-sex domestic violence, and that discrimination actually makes the problem *worse*:

      ...

      So, once more, the very sources you use to support your argument actually contradict it. Especially when you use sources that, um, say that anti-gay-marriage laws hurt gay people in order to argue that gays shouldn't marry. *chuckle*

      ________________________

      My Response:

      1. Sodomy laws have been overturned.

      2. Based on what's written above, many states do offer homosexuals protection from, and/or recourse against, partner violence

      3. The latest reference cited above is 1999. In the last 12 years, more states or jurisdictions either enforce or provide protections against same-sex abuse/violence.

      4. The vast majority of homosexuals move to or live in jurisdictions in which they feel more accepted and, thus, are likely to have the protections mentioned above; and,

      5. There's no need to legally recognize same-sex "marriage" in order to provide these protections. They can certainly do so under any partnership arrangements, including the domestic partnerships and/or civil unions that are already in place in several states.

      So, in conclusion, none of what Brandone excerpted above argues in favor of the legal recognition of gay "marriage."

      Delete
  18. The truth is that marriage has already been redefined.

    For the vast majority of people, the definition of marriage is first and foremost about love and building a life together. It's not a financial transaction or a way to have kids. The financial benefits and kids are secondary to the love aspects. This is radically different from the past where marriage was the only way for most women to survive financially and the only acceptable way of having sex and children.

    According to your reasons for denying same-sex marriage, heterosexual marriage does the folowing: encourages acceptable behavior, creates a great place for children to grow, keeps diseases in check, keeps couples from having sex outside marriage. How do you know that same-sex marriage won't do the same thing for same-sex couples?

    Your argument ignores that all heterosexual marriages are not the same. Not all heterosexual marriages result in children. Not all heterosexual marriages are monogamous. Each couple sets the rules for their marriage.

    You have the right to your opinion, but the only real argument that you are making is that from a religious perspective you find same-sex marriage wrong. But every point you make about same-sex marriage applies to at least some heterosexual marriages. Anal sex even happens in heterosexual marriages.

    The answer is really to stop mixing religious marriage and civil marriage. All couples should have a civil marriage and if they want a religious ceremony, that's between them and the church.

    The arguments that a number of bad things happen when you let two men or two women marry doesn't make sense when the same things can -- and do -- happen in heterosexual relationships. You can say that if these bad things happen, more couples will get divorced, but that doesn't mean we should stop marriages from happening. You can't predict divorce. Most - if not all - people who marry aren't thinking that they are going to get divorced. It happens. If stopping divorce is your goal, then start campaigning to outlaw divorce.

    And any argument based on religion (God says it's wrong) is going to be immediately dismissed by those who don't believe in your religion. It's not a great way of convincing anyone other than those who think like you.

    Even if you could prove that same-sex marriages were far more destructive than heterosexual marriage, that still wouldn't necessarily be grounds for outlawing it. We don't stop two heterosexual from marrying even if we know they are both a mess, have criminal records, have every STD imaginable and have a record of child abuse and animal cruelty. So why would we stop same-sex couples from marrying?

    Even the argument about homosexuality being a behavior is meaningless. Heterosexuality is a behavior as well. No one has to have sex with anyone. Everyone makes a choice to have sex. Everyone makes a choice about everything. I chose to have breakfast this morning. I choose to eat enough to stay alive. I chose to take a bath and brush my teeth. So what if homosexuality is totally a choice? That doesn't mean we shouldn't allow same-sex marriage.

    I've rambled enough. But I'm glad you put this post up. It sparked a lot of discussion, but you are arguing the wrong thing. Homosexual marriage is not going to change the definition of marriage. The definition has already changed.

    ReplyDelete
  19. Aspects of the way people treat marriage may have changed but changing marriage to include homosexual couples will change the definition dramatically and is without any legitimate basis.

    To argue that because marriage is now just a relationship founded on 'love' and 'building a life together' and so should include homosexual couples has consequences that I don't think the above author has thought about carefully.

    Should our society then allow stepfathers to marry stepsons on that basis? Or older sisters to marry younger sisters? Or various types of group marriages? Why not bigamy and all sorts of polyamory too?

    Marriage is not just based on romantic love and the desire to build a life together. Marriage is typically based on man and woman wanting to build a family together; wanting to have kinship relationships with those who will begin the next generation and in turn have their grandchildren.

    Homosexual 'marriage' cannot become to fit in this picture because such relationships are really friendships with sex play added. The sex can never be coital because of the lack of complementary genitalia and can never ever be procreative from within the relationship.

    Homosexual friendships are simply not marriage-like in structure and we are entertaining a fantasy to imagine that they are. We cannot by wishing make pears into lemons; nor can we can simply declare homosexual friendships 'marriages'. Our naive declarations won't make it so.

    All such delusions result in greater delusion; and the reality we live within a short while that we have made a cardinal category mistake by our over-reaching hubris.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Changing civil marriage to include same sex couples will not lead to any dramatic change, and it does have a legitimate basis.

      Homosexual marriages are not really friendships with sex play added, just as heterosexual marriages are not really friendships with sex play added - which is why both can fit the same picture.

      Procreating does not change a relationship from being a friendship with sex play to something else. People treat their relationships as they treat them, and gay or straight, that could be good or bad.

      Friendships are not marriage like in structure, and nobody is saying they are. There is a difference between homosexual friendships and homosexual marriage, just like there is a difference between heterosexual friendships and heterosexual marriage.

      Nobody is wishing to turn friendships into marriage, whether heterosexual or homosexual. This is about actual marriages.

      Your delusion, however, is that you expressly deny that while heterosexual relationships can be friendships or marriage, homosexual relationships cannot, with no sound reaon to say so. This is your hubris, not logic.

      Delete
  20. "Your delusion, however, is that you expressly deny that while heterosexual relationships can be friendships or marriage, homosexual relationships cannot, with no sound reaon to say so. This is your hubris, not logic."

    My 'sound reason' for saying the above is that homosexual relationships do not and cannot involve sexual intercourse. This obviously derives from the lack of physical complementarity with respect to sexual genitalia.

    The anus or mouth are not principally genitalia though they are/can be used to promote sexual stimulation. The anus is not structurally made to be penetrated by penises or penis-like devices and to treat anuses this way contravenes their normal use causing health problems as is reported among homosexual populations.

    Nor can homosexual relationships in principle form families from within the relationship. They can only use the offspring of heterosexual activity.

    State acknowledgement of homosexual 'marriage' will involve an empirical muddle between two different types of relationships being compounded with a legislative mistake.

    "Changing civil marriage to include same sex couples will not lead to any dramatic change," Really! Well for one thing, the change will force all those who are against s-s marriage to change their manner of speech because it will be an offence to argue that ssms are not marriage. It will be considered 'hate' speech. Hence, civil liberties will be curtailed and PC will rule legislatively.

    Then consider the educational implications: young pupils from a certain age will be educated in the language of acceptance of ssm as 'real' marriage against the wishes of their parents and grandparents. I am a grandparent so I feel this keenly. Why should my grandchildren be forced to listen to and affirm things their households conscientiously object to?

    Thirdly, consider the vocational implications: I work as a psychologist. If a person comes to me and wishes to move away from his/her homosexual partner and to give up the homosexual lifestyle I will have to say, "I'm sorry, I am forbidden by law to help you to do the latter".

    Those are just a few random examples that I've been able to find in my own small life but the implications generations into the future are far-reaching.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Your initial claim was that the difference between friendships with sex and marriages was procreation - now you're saying the sound reason is that the difference is sexual intercourse vs. non-sexual intercourse?

      So, by your definition, marriage is a relationship with sex that is sexual intercourse, and everything else is a relationship with sex that isn't sexual intercourse. And the way to graduate from a friendship with sex to a marriage is for that sex to be sexual intercourse?

      So heterosexual couples can't have friendships with sex if they have sexual intercourse? And heterosexual couples are only married if they have sexual intercourse, not other forms of sex or no sex? Physical complementarity with respect to sexual genitalia is what defines a marriage?

      Hopefully, you just avoided what I was asking, and you don't actually believe that. So I repeat, your delusion is that you expressly deny that, while heterosexual relationships can be friendships or marriage, homosexual relationships cannot, with vaginal sex being the sole difference. This is your hubris, not logic.

      Marriages do not require families to form "in principle" anymore than they require families to form "in reality" from within the relationship. We all know where offspring comes from, whether the family came from procreation, adoption, sperm donation, egg donation, surrogacy, etc.

      State acknowledgement of homosexual marriage does not involve any muddling because the 1100 federal laws associated with marriage do not necessitate differentiating different types of marriages - and it's not a legislative mistake.

      Your further examples show you do not understand what civil marriage laws are or do, and are a great struggle to try to legitimize discrimination.

      Civil laws are not in general taught about in schools. And if parents and grandparents don't want their kids learning about anything, including the number 3, chemistry, interracial marriage, or other religions, they can homeschool their children. They aren't forced to go to school, their household can teach if they like. In any case, laws that are not about school curriculum cannot be kept discriminatory on the basis of schools. Interracial marriage wasn't prevented because 90% of families didn't want their children thinking it was real marriage. Were children in the 70s forced to listen to and affirm interracial marriages their households conscientiously objected to?

      Thirdly, none of the 1,138 laws associated with civil marriage ban any practice of psychology, for heterosexuals or homosexuals. You know this, because there is no laws against anyone wishing to move away from his/her heterosexual or homosexual partner and to give up their heterosexual/homosexual lifestyle that were passed in any state with marriage.

      Those are just a few extremely off base examples of how much you have to stretch to lie about the implications of two people getting married and being treated equally under the law regardless of their gender.

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    2. ir1946....I fully agree with you and I seriously wonder if anyone is actually considering the rights of the child and especially one bought up with no mother. Most children have a mother and certainly all need one! There are many far reaching consequences on the effect on the family unit including gender roles etc which no one seems to be addressing. I for one shudder to see the world which my grandchildren will be entering....a confused mixed up and totally unbalanced society.

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    3. Everyone is considering the rights of the child. Most children have a mother. Some have two. Some have none. Most children have a father. Some have two. Some have none.

      But, is it certainty that people all NEED a mother? What happens to children who need food and they don't get it? They die.

      What happens to children who need a mother and instead are being raised by a single father, or two dads. Do they die? Do they fail? Do they wind up mentally diseased? Were is the need?

      You mention gender roles. What gender roles should we impose on people, and why? If someone is being themselves, and it contradicts a stereotype of a gender role, is that bad?

      I for one embrace the world in which your grandchildren will be entering, one where they are valued as individuals, one where they make their own choices, and their own destiny, and nobody like you is there to hold them back because it's not "balanced." Your confusion won't hold back people from being themselves... but realize that it's you that is confused, not anyone else.

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  22. I believe that all those opposed to ssm have to do is to show that ss relationships differ in kind from hetsex ones: I think I have done that and nothing you have said alters the facts that one group has sexual intercourse and the other does not.

    However, as a psychologist, I must take you up on the issue of the attack on freedom with regard to counselling ss attracted clients who present to a psychologist wishing to be free of such attraction. One case in the UK of a psychotherapist who has been suspended from her 20+ practice by the BAPC (British Association of Psychotherapists and Counsellors) because she tried to help such a client. The client though was masquerading as someone who wanted help in the above area but was actually a gay activist. She now has to complete a stint of 're-education' so that she will have the 'correct' view of homosexuality. This action can only be described as illustrative of Orwell's 1984.

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    1. Not quite. All those opposed have to show an interest in differentiating and discriminating between the two, why it is necessary for the state to have two separate and unequal institutions for couples based on gender.

      If they were separate but equal, there wouldn't be a need for two.

      It doesn't serve any legitimate government interest to set up two institutions differentiating couples on the basis of whether or not they have sexual intercourse. As sexual intercourse is not a part of any marriage laws, it serves no interest to separate.

      So that is what you would need to do. That is what Prop 8 failed to prove, of course. And many others have. Because the government is set up to serve the people.

      And interesting, that you frame the issue on psychology as an attack on freedom with regard to counseling. I would then ask, are there forms of counseling you are not allowed to do? Are there forms of counseling that are proven ineffective and harmful that you cannot do? Are there things that are not counseling that you could be in trouble for if you used them under the guise of counseling?

      Are you saying that you will not be able to help clients, or are you saying that you will not be able to specifically use conversion therapy with clients? Conversion therapy, it is shown, has many negative outcomes and has not been shown to be effective at all at converting sexual orientation. Just as ineffective as trying to convert someone away from heterosexuality.

      This action can be described as preventing psychologists from using dangerous and harmful techniques against patients. You prefer the freedom to harm your patients?

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  23. The example I gave on counselling refutes what you said originally that 'there is no laws against anyone wishing to move away from his/her heterosexual or homosexual partner and to give up their heterosexual/homosexual lifestyle that were passed in any state with marriage'. I give you that example and you twist and turn to put me in the wrong. The point is that that experienced UK psychotherapist is not able to practice because of the draconian attitudes that are now springing up that will prevent psychologists helping clients with what the clients believe is a problem in their lives. Conversion therapy has not been shown to hurt or injure those who enter it and has been shown to be effective in some cases.
    I don't think the marriage concept can be stretched to include homosexual couples. I don't think has anything to do with equality just as if two 10 year olds or a father and his daughter wished to marry they would be refused as well. Neither of these cases would be treated as inequalities in the system.
    Homosexuals see this hurdle to gain the opportunity to marry as buying respectability and acceptance; that seems evident by the few homosexual couples as a percentage who actually get married when the law is changed.
    'Just as effective as trying to convert someone away from heterosexuality'--is a comment that reveals you think that heteros and homos are equal options whereas I don't so I don't think much can be achieved continuing this exchange.

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    1. The example you gave is an example of a psychotherapist being unprofessional. Praying to God is not professional and not helping your client. Asserting that the client must have been abused as a child is not professional and not helping your client. There is no law against anyone wishing to move away from their partner. There is no law against anyone wishing to give up their lifestyle. And there is also no law against helping someone who wishes to do so.

      But what that therapist did was fail to exercise reasonable care and skill and was thus negligent. The panel also said it was ‘entirely wrong’ for Mrs Pilkington to suggest that Mr Strudwick had been sexually abused as a child, and that this ‘falls below the standard to be expected of a reasonably competent practitioner.’

      So again, there is no law against helping a patient, just a law against using harmful and dangerous practices against a patient.

      The point is that an experienced UK psychotherapist should ACT LIKE IT, and is not allowed to practice because of the dangerous things she does which does not help them.

      If someone wants to help a patient, do so in ways that ARE psychotherapy and healthy.

      Conversion therapy has been shown to hurt and injure patients, and there is ABSOLUTELY no evidence it has been effective. There is no scientific backing for conversion therapy, and no real knowledge of what conversion therapy is - some conditioning forms of it are completely dangerous.

      The marriage concept can, and has been, stretched to include same sex couples. It has as much to do with equality as denying interracial couples marriage, which is an inequality in the system.

      Homosexuals do not care anything about buying respectability and acceptance, nor did interracial couples or most civil rights struggles - they just want their rights, because they can't force acceptance.

      And yes, there are a lot of homosexual couples who don't want to marry, who aren't ready, but who understand that there are others who do and should be able to.

      It doesn't matter if you don't think heterosexuality and homosexuality are equal "options," just as it doesn't matter if you don't think interracial relationships and same race relationships are equal "options."

      But thank you for realizing you cannot achieve anything in continuing to falsely claim all this fallout from same sex civil marriage, most of which has nothing to do with the 1,138 federal laws or the myriad of state laws pertaining to marriage.

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  24. None of your [1] bracketed numbers seem to work for me. They all lead to a broken yahoo link.

    You state how marriage behavior should be encouraged for those who engage in opposite sex behavior, as it leads to offer psychological and health benefits to both partners and to offspring. Among these are reduced stress, increased lifespan, and the best environment for raising children. Marriage also greatly reduces (if not eliminates) promiscuity and the potential for STDs, AIDS, and AIDS-related diseases.

    Among this, you have only two citations. The first states that 75% of married men and 85% of married women have never had sexual relations outside of their marriage. Can you state what percentage, if civil marriage was not legalized for those engaging in opposite-sex behavior, would not be engaging in sexual relations outside of their marriage? How would not having civil marriage recognition affect health benefits to partners, and how would it affect their promiscuity?

    The second link shows how people who are married are statistically better off than those who are unmarried. Are there studies comparable to this that compare married homosexual couples to those who choose to remain unmarried? Which of the studies (3,4,5,6,7) if any address comparing unmarried and married homosexual couples? Do they show no benefits from marriage? Or do they show some benefits?

    In the Scandinavia study, you cite that increasing the statistical average of divorce rates weakens marriage. Should we therefore, by that logic, prevent those who are statistically more likely to divorce from marrying, in order to encourage low divorce rates (and, also, lower marriage rates)? Do couples who marry and divorce only weaken the statistics of marriage, or do they weaken other people's marriages, and how?

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  25. I'm also trying to find where in the sources you found says that homosexual parents of children, primarily men, are more likely to abuse or assault one another. Of those, I do not see that they studied homosexual parents of children, but only that they studied homosexual individuals. Also, the studies cited seem to indicate that women partnered with women are less likely to experience domestic abuse than women partnered with men, which contradicts your claim, as the National Violence Against Women Survey found it to be about half. And all the evidence more shows that domestic violence is primarily perpetrated by men, so that if you date men, there is a chance of that violence. Some of your non-random studies found higher prevalence among the group surveyed, but there were no attempts at a random sampling to make an overarching statistical statement, so they should not be used as you do.

    Also, this seems to deal with raising children, but not whether we should let them marry - there seems to be no data suggesting that allowing someone to civilly marry has any impact on domestic abuse.

    You mention too that children of same-sex couples would be more likely to live with single parents due to the added risk of divorce - but if there were no such thing as civil marriage, they would 100% be living with single parents, due to not being able to marry. If living with single parents is a concern, then civil marriage should be appropriate, and there doesn't seem to be any indication that preventing parents from marrying is more healthy for children then them marrying and divorcing.

    You also add opinion and bias into your article stating that children would "learn that same-sex behavior is acceptable" and that they would be more likely to experiment, but no data shows unhealthy outcomes for children such as you claim.

    And another point of bias, not supported by any reasonable evidence, you state that some potential increases teaching or considering that homosexual behavior is normal and beneficial, which I do not see taught in any curriculum, and there is no more a factual basis to make this statement than to say that heterosexual behavior is "normal" or "benecificial" and promoted or encouraged, which is not what marriage does.

    And you misrepresent the APA statement, which is no place states that social influences are a part - in fact it states the opposite, and does not state at all what factors have been identified. Same sex marriage has not been shown as an identifying factor at all, and to claim such is quite disingenuous.

    You continue to go on about sexual behavior, when not addressing relationships, confusing the two - and presenting a correlation quite loosely as a reason to deny civil marriage equality, which is not supported by any of your data.

    I have never seen anyone present that sexual behavior is harmless and benign, but you claim that that is the case when it comes to heterosexual and homosexual behavior.

    The last two paragraphs of your essay are not intellectual at all, but show a lot of your bias - mentioning "Race" and "judicial fiat" which are entirely out of place in your essay unless you admit it is simply not supposed to be an analysis of the data.

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  26. First let me say that I have love for all people. These issues bring up a lot of hate and really divide us as Americans. I try to put myself in the shoes of both parties involving ssm and hetro marriage.

    I disagree with ssm. I do believe that Adults should be able to choose to do what they want as far as sexual orientation goes. However, I feel like the gay community has kept pushing and pushing and pushing the issue. The whole give them an inch and they take a foot routine.

    I personally can agree with some others who have commented here, saying that they are scared for their grandchildren. I am 30 and am married, but don't have any kids yet. I would love to have some and may still, but I constantly think about the world that we live in and that it isn't much of a place to raise kids anymore. The world is WAY to FAST these days. Kids are growing up to fast and I think they have trouble understanding the difference between fantasy and reality. Videos games and movies play a big part in this. Way to many shootings and just insane evil crimes over the past years.

    Everybody wants to talk bad on GOD. I think most people forget the reason America was created was so we could have freedom and worship GOD. I will be honest. The freedom of religion I believe meant you are free to worship GOD. At that time most of the Americans had very similar beliefs, so it was easy to agree. One problem over the years is that America has become known as the "melting pot." The problem with having a "melting pot," is that you have so many different beliefs. A lot of people want to come into our country reap the benefits, but don't car about America, our culture, or helping our future.

    The truth is I believe our country has been successful thus far because the majority knew and trusted GOD. Through the years the contracts drawn up to protect us have been the ones to take our own rights and beliefs from us. Slowly but surely we have turned away from GOD as a whole and you can see the negativity coming about due to this. I actually think that everything is on track, because you can read about these type of events in Revelations in the Bible. I am not here to degrade anybody or even push my beliefs on anybody. In fact I never even post on sites. I normally only read the comments. I just want to address some things that I have felt after many years of hearing about this topic and just let some things out.

    One thing I will say that has bothered me is that when they change the military "don't ask, don't tell" policy. This is what confused me. When I went into the Navy at 18 years old, I was put into an all male division. Some were male/female. Anyway, we would take showers everyday together, except no male/females were allowed to shower together. I think most people would think it unacceptable to have a straight male shower with a group of females, so why should a gay male/female be able to shower with a group of males/female? Should he shower with the females? It is a strange and small example, but it kind of shows how things don't seem to fit. Aside from the earlier mentioned sexual issue, it seems to me another piece of the puzzle that doesn't fit. It reminds me when I was in elementary school and they would say if you look at the map of the world, that it looks like the continents could have fit together at one point, but that they didn't. Well many years later they figured out that it had been one land mass at one time. At the time I didn't believe it, it had to fit just by looking at it, but because they said it didn't it couldn't be right.

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  27. I guess what I am rambling about, is basically I feel that the gay community has wanted most of these rights to feel accepted and to have the "normal" people say that what they do is okay. People don't like to have religion pushed on them, but if you look at the facts most things done by HONEST/GODLY people have benefited everybody involved. That is why America has been able to help other countries and be able to be a leader, we have been BLESSED to do so. However, can you really say that about the gay community? I mean what positive things will come for me and my family?

    I am sure that my comments will upset some and that is not what I mean to do. Others will pick apart my comments, look for errors and tell me I have no facts to back up my thoughts. All I can say is I speak from my heart which has done me no harm this far in life. I am blessed in many ways and will ALWAYS credit GOD for taking care of me and producing many miracles in my life! I hope that maybe HE can do the same for others on here if HE hasn't already. I personally think that being active in the gay lifestyle is a sin. However, I know that the Bible states that a sin is a sin, so do I think it is any worse than when I may comment even what I would consider a simple sin? No, I don't. However, I am not out there trying to convince somebody that the sins I commit are okay and aren't really sins and that everybody around me should accept them and agree with me.

    Lastly, our country is in turmoil. The government is corrupt, the people and children are mislead, and most people are just trying to survive. I pray that everyone here will be blessed and we wait the day that WE ALL FACE THE TRUTH TOGETHER!! GOD BLESS US ALL!!

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