Its okay to be Gay

I’ve never really understood bigotry and hatred. Ignorance was not taught as a virtue in my house, and my parents strove hard to overcome their own intolerances to raise us to be better than they were. That is not to say that I have none, or that I am perfect. I am far from it, and I hope that when and if I begin to raise children, I can follow the amazing examples of my parents and try to ensure that they are raised without my own irrational fears and beliefs. That’s why, when asked to write about my views of homosexuality, I didn’t understand why I needed to. I didn’t understand why anyone would think it was anything other than okay to be gay.

So I did research.

I went online and I googled things like, “why is it not okay to be gay?” and “the bible and homosexuality.” I’m still pretty confused as to why people think there is anything wrong with being gay. All of the religious arguments I have found have no basis in any teaching of God, and all of the social arguments I have found either site studies that are at least 20 years old, or completely ignore the correlation between homosexual and heterosexual couples. Simply put, the only reason I can find that people have to say that homosexuality is not okay is that they are ignorant, cowardly douchebags.

So why are so many people afraid of homosexuality? Probably because fear is used to control the population, and homosexuals are something we can still teach people to fear.

The best article I could find that rationalized those fears is an article written by Mike Haley, a “reformed” homosexual who now lectures to gay kids to try and scare them straight. The article, entitled, Why Gay is not OK, reprinted on Beliefnet.Com was the first thing that popped up when I searched for why some people don’t think its okay to be gay. The article, written in 1999 articulates the same biased and backwards beliefs that I have seen around the internet on everything from the website of Fred Phelps to Tea Party blogs.  Some of you, just don’t seem to understand that the world has changed in the last 10 years.

Claims against Homosexuality –

1) Only a tiny minority of people are gay, so it doesn’t matter that they don’t get represented. No, seriously, this is one of their arguments. WTF? Can you come up with a less intelligent argument? Can you come up with a statistic that doesn’t show how much we need to defend the rights of those citizens more? This is basically saying so few people are gay that they don’t count as being human.  Criminy. THIS is as good as it gets?

2) Homosexuality isn’t genetic, its a lifestyle choice. Ok. Research is still out there on this one. We can prove that there are defiantly some genetic factors in becoming homosexual, but we can also prove that there are environmental and developmental factors. What we haven’t proven is that homosexuality isn’t a natural developing. In Fact, most research shows that it is a naturally occurring development, often siting situations where there is one gay and one straight twin in a set.  Not that any of that even matters, since its all points to being a lot less of a choice than being, say, Catholic or Episcopalian. Those are lifestyle choices that we do give rights to in America. Should we really consider any other lifestyle choice to be any less important, any less worthy of our support and respect? To think so is foolish, pigheaded, and wrong.

3) Homosexuals are sexual deviants incapable of love and monogamy. And neither or heterosexuals:

Alfred Kinsey has found in his studies that 50% of males and 26% of females had extramarital sex at least once during their lifetime. Depending on studies, it was estimated that 26–50% of men and 21–38% women, or 22.7% of men and 11.6% of women had extramarital sex. Other authors say that between 20% and 25% of Americans had sex with someone other than their spouse. However, one survey that measured the prevalence of adultery in the 12 months prior to the study showed rates of extramarital sex as low as 2.5% The results suggest that while 15–25% of married Americans have had extramarital sex at least once in their lifetime, extramarital sex occurred infrequently in any one year.

Adultery Entry from Wikipedia

The largest industry in the US is pornography.  Prostitution rates have risen all across the country. We are simply a nation of dirty scumbags. The divorce rate in the US is on the rise, still, despite being the highest national divorce rate in the world. We are a nation that doesn’t like to bang only one person. We still view domination of multiple sexual partners as a sign of virility in men. I think the monogamy issue is one that needs to be addressed purely across the board, not just in homosexual communities. Why should you hold them to any higher standards than you hold yourselves.

Everyone should just keep their genitals in their pants.

Now for the big one, and the one that Mr. Haley doesn’t comment on in his article, because he can’t: God doesn’t like homosexuals.

I have not been able to find any biblical evidence of this. I can’t find any Biblical evidence for God being against homosexuality at all. Here are a few things that I can find God having a problem with, and I don’t think many of us would disagree:

  • Rape
  • Sexual Abuse of Children
  • Beastiality
  • Prostitution
  • Orgies
  • Ritual sex in a Pagan Temple
  • Sexual relationships in which one person is dominated by another person in general.

Wow, I don’t see homosexuality on that list at all. The only reason I even take the time to point this out is because so many people are effected by their religious views. Always remember, the man standing at the front of your church is not GOD! He is a man, just like you, and he has the same fears and worries that you do.

In researching this article, I came across the blog of a young, openly gay, Mormon, Sneakers in Sacrament. Raised in a church that actively teaches that homosexuality is a burden keeping you from the true purpose of humanity, marrying and raising children, he has found his own ways to come to terms with God and his sexuality. He has a rather amazing article written on exactly what he believes and feels here. Its pretty long, but worth the read. I encourage anyone trying to come to terms with being gay and following God’s teachings to read it, and begin doing some research into exactly what your religion teaches, not from the preachers and priests, but from the voice of your God directly.

You’d be surprised.

Really, though, I’m still having the same problem I had at the beginning of all this. I don’t understand why anyone would think there is a problem with homosexuality. I can’t find any evidence from a credible source that anything about being gay is inherently wrong. Sure, there are plenty of pitfalls that need to be avoided, but none that don’t exist in the heterosexual community.

Really. Its okay to be gay.

6 thoughts on “Its okay to be Gay

  1. Daniel Woodmansee says:

    Read Romans 1:24-32, Leviticus 18:22, 20:13, Deuteronomy 23:17, these verses are just a few places in where God has commanded His people not to engage in homosexuality. The telling of the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrha based upon the dislike of the sin being committed in these large cities. I could go on and quote more, from the BIble, but I would say this. I am not a homophobe, I do not wish to exterminate homosexuals, and I do know several of them. God does love the person, has he loves everyone, He hates the sin we engage in. I feel that a person wishing to seek God and wants to be homosexual, will have a struggle to content with, persuding himself and God that sin can co-exsist together with God.

  2. James says:

    Very interesting points. Thanks for taking the time to write about this.

    A few thoughts on these so-called arguments against homosexuality:

    Claim 1 “Only a tiny minority of people are gay, so it doesn’t matter that they don’t get represented”…

    Conservative {and I believe rather reliable} statistics put the homosexual population in the United States at around 2%. Which is also about the same percentage of Jews in the United States. Such a small number hardly seems an adequate excuse to marginalize either demographic, in my opinion.

    I would also draw attention to the fact that, in a constitutional republic like ours, laws which establish inalienable rights which are not to be abridged without due process of law (free speech & assembly for instance), are designed to protect not the power-holding majority, but rather individuals.

    Claim 2 “Homosexuality isn’t genetic, its a lifestyle choice.”

    I would argue — and growing scientific research like that done in rams is suggesting — that homosexual orientation, like heterosexual orientation, is innate; genetic. Homosexual behavior, like heterosexual behavior or, you know, practicing a religion, are lifestyle choices. Choices which, I would also argue, free people should be able to make without fear of persecution by their government or society at large.

    Claim 3 “Homosexuals are sexual deviants incapable of love and monogamy.”

    The first is obviously a subjective moral judgment, one I most definitely do not agree with. I would draw attention to the fact that homosexuality (even exclusive) is found frequently in nature, in a wide array of species. That aside, I would also note that there is no evidence confirming that homosexual behavior is inherently harmful to individuals who engage in it nor to society at large. The same cannot be said, of course, for promiscuity, which is really the heart of this particular qualm which, as you pointed out, is a problem that plagues both homo- and heterosexuals alike. Promiscuity is NOT, I can attest, a symptom of same-sex attraction or relations.

    As for being incapable of love and monogamy, I am a homosexual and quite capable of both love and monogamy. In fact, I have a highly conventional attitude toward relationships. Far more conservative than many of my heterosexual peers, in fact.

    Furthermore, I have never engaged in a non-monogamous relationship and I cannot imagine that I ever would. Certainly not by choice. For someone like me, a thirty-something male, that is probably rather unusual. And I think it’s a damn shame that society on the whole needs to address. However, my homosexual orientation in no way limits my ability nor desire to be strictly monogamous.

    I should add that I am honest and objective enough to acknowledge that the homosexual community has had disproportionate struggles with issues like suicide, promiscuity, drug abuse and STD’s. This concerns me very much. But I am also knowledgeable enough to know there are a myriad of complex societal reasons for this which have little if anything to do with same-sex attraction or relations. Unfortunately, others with an agenda to demonize homosexuality at large choose to imagine there must be a correlation. Just as, I suppose, we are to imagine the fact that HIV disproportionately affects blacks must mean there is something inherently dysfunctional in being of African decent. Some are simply ignorant of many facts and perspectives which they haven’t been exposed to. I’d like to enlighten them. Others are just bigots who refuse to think beyond their preconceived notions. They never will, and I no longer waste my time on them.

    As for the destruction of Sodom & Gomorrah, I would suggest Daniel Woodmansee reread his bible, many of the “sins” of Sodom are as follows: “This was the guilt of your sister Sodom: she and her daughters had pride, excess of food and prosperous ease, but did not aid the poor and needy. They were haughty and did abominable things before me; therefore I removed them when I saw it.” Ezekiel 16:46-50 [ source ]

    Furthermore, the incident at Lot’s home was in it’s proper context an angry mob demanding to rape visitors to the city. Sexual orientation has no relevance to the immorality of such a thing. Surely on that point we could agree…

    Nevermind the inherent violence in this, in ancient (and modern Middle Eastern cultures), hospitality to strangers is an absolute. It is chiefly for this reason that someone like Lot, supposedly a righteous man, would have found it quite acceptable to offer his own daughters up in the stead of the visitors. It wasn’t to spare the visitors exposure to a (violent) homosexual act, it was to spare them a degrading assault, period. Had the angels been female, Lot would have been no less inclined to prevent the townsfolk from having their way with them. This should go without saying, but some people are too myopic to see the obvious.

    Yes, one can find Levitical laws prohibiting homosexuality, as well as eating shellfish, pork, wearing blended fabrics, fortune-telling, etc. These laws were intended for the children of Israel {and most quite practical, for the time}. As many hypocritical Christians will point out, they don’t have to pay attention to these laws (except the anti-homosexual one) because Jesus fulfilled a new covenant.

    Of course, whether the god of the old testament or even if Jesus himself were cited as condemning homosexuality (which to our knowledge he did not), it wouldn’t change anything for me as I am not a Jew, a Muslim nor a Christian, and as such I will not be held to these prohibitions. I’ll eat all the shellfish, pork, and wear all the blended fabrics and share the most intimate aspects of myself with a member of the same sex as I damn well please. I’ll make no apologies for this, either. There is simply no rational, logical reason to attach any guilt, shame or stigma to same-sex attraction or relationships.

    Lastly, time changes. Regardless the religious justifications, it is no longer acceptable to keep slaves or treat women (and children) as property in civilized societies like ours. Nor should it be acceptable to cite (or twist) religious texts into justifications to demonize natural, non-harmful behaviors. Particularly one as innocent as sharing one’s love and life with the person one’s heart has become attached to.

    I wish more religious folks would practice what they preach, and spend more time encouraging people to build loving, satisfying relationships; spending less time wringing their hands over the racial and gender ratios of those relationships.

    {Apologies for the length…}

    1. Daniel & James,

      Thank you both for your comments.

      I don’t claim to be a religious authority, and it would be hubris for me to claim to speak on behalf of God.

      I do know a few things though.

      1) I’m not perfect.
      2) I’m probably a LOT more sinful than James’ monogamous homosexual relationships.
      3) I definitely do not follow any of the laws of Leviticus. I like a good pepperoni pizza.
      4) I’m glad that I have friends on both sides of most issues that are willing to talk to about things without judgment and anger.
      5) If America is going to be a nation of equality, it must be equal for all of its citizens.
      6) The Berret is making a comeback. Seriously, we’ll all be rocking them this time next year.
      7) Using humor is a great way to defuse a tense situation.

      Thank you,

  3. Daniel Woodmansee says:

    I agree, humor is a great tool in defusing any tense situation. James is entitled to his point of view the same as me, Matt, and anyone living in this great nation. I find the interaction stimulating. I am not trying to point fingers in anyone’s direction, because that leaves three fingers pointing at myself. Relationships are important in all aspects of life from friends, family, and even religon. I respect James’ belief to live his life as he wishes, I was merely arguing with Matt’s statement of no Biblical evidence. Keep up the good work Matt, this way I have something to argue with you while waiting for the next campfire discussion.

  4. Teigan H. says:

    I have something to add to this, or rather, to the comments. As a non-religious bi-sexual woman I have come across additional arguments that haven’t been listed. Really, it boils down to societies still standing prejudice against women.

    1)Gay men are “understandable” because men will “stick their dicks in anything”, but lesbians are unnatural.
    2)Bisexual men again will stick their dicks in anything, but bisexual women are sluts and greedy. To this day it’s still unusual to hear a woman talking about enjoying sex. Men can talk about jacking off, but if a woman talks about double clicking the mouse it’s hilarious/horrifying/embarrassing. Shit, women still hide their fucking tampons from men.

    Meh, I don’t know where I’m going with this, but I thought I’d give a woman’s view to this argument.

    I like both men and women. I have never slept with a woman, but like my straight compatriots that were having wet dreams about Cindy Crawford when they were 15, I was fantasizing about Jonny Lang and Angelina Jolie. I like sex. I’m not ashamed to admit it in situations where sex is appropriate to talk about. (Work is really not appropriate, fyi).

    I really wish the US/World would get rid of their 50 year old mentality that women don’t want to have sex and that if they are lesbians they just need a good dicking.

    And in a round about way that brings me back to societies prejudice against men. “Women are submissive, men are not.” Therefor men that like other men are playing the wrong role, and women that like other women again are playing the wrong role. Haven’t you heard “Which one is the woman” *snickersnicker* Neither of them you asshats! They’re BOTH MEN!

  5. Teigan H. says:

    That was “brings me back to societies prejudice against women” not against men. Blarg.

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