Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

Research fuels religious debate over homosexuality
Science & Theology News ^ | May 5, 2006 | Shoshana Kordova

Posted on 05/05/2006 12:43:11 PM PDT by DBeers

Research fuels religious debate over homosexuality

Nurture versus nature and scripture versus science — the Abrahamic faiths continue their struggle to define views on homosexuality

“Steve,” a married 48-year-old Orthodox Jew from Jerusalem with six children, is proud of his success: After 18 months of counseling, he has restricted his sexual encounters with other men to only once in the last four months. Steve, who is not — in his words — “a biological homosexual,” attributes his restraint to a therapy group that uses religious values as part of the treatment.

As someone who until recently had a long-term male lover and regularly engaged in casual gay sex, Steve — who asked that his real name not be used — says that a few years ago he would not have thought he could stop having sex with men altogether. Now, though, he considers it a goal that is “absolutely in my reach.”

Steve’s therapy group is one of many around the world that aims to help people cope with unwanted homosexual inclinations. Such treatment — known as reorientation, reparative or conversion therapy — has been severely criticized by gay-rights activists and many mental-health professionals who say sexual orientation is generally unchangeable. At best, the therapy is unsuccessful, activists say. At worst, it is harmful.

The scriptures of all three major monotheistic religions — as understood by many in those traditions — condemn homosexual behavior, leaving Christians, Jews and Muslims who have same-sex attractions to choose between their religious values and their sexual orientation. The dilemma has led some psychologists, psychiatrists and religious leaders to break off from predominant psychological thinking and swim against the current of political correctness in their attempt to induce change in patients with unwanted sexual attractions.

The American Psychiatric Association, or APA, removed homosexuality in 1973 from the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, known as the DSM. In May 2000, the association stated: “Psychotherapeutic modalities to convert or ‘repair’ homosexuality are based on developmental theories whose scientific validity is questionable. Furthermore, anecdotal reports of ‘cures’ are counterbalanced by anecdotal claims of psychological harm. In the last four decades, ‘reparative’ therapists have not produced any rigorous scientific research to substantiate their claims of cure. Until there is such research available, APA recommends that ethical practitioners refrain from attempts to change individuals’ sexual orientation, keeping in mind the medical dictum to first, do no harm.”

But in 2001, a new wrinkle was added.  Robert Spitzer, a Columbia University psychiatrist who had helped spearhead the removal of homosexuality from the DSM, presented a study at an APA conference concluding that “there is evidence that change in sexual orientation following some form of reparative therapy does occur in some gay men and lesbians.”

In his research, Spitzer found that 66 percent of the men and 44 percent of the women had achieved “good heterosexual functioning,” and that 11 percent of the men and 37 percent of the women reported being entirely free of homosexual feelings. His research was based on telephone interviews with 200 people who reported a five-year change from homosexual to heterosexual attraction. Spitzer also found that the vast majority of the interviewees were religious and “highly motivated” to change their sexual orientation.

The study, published in Archives of Sexual Behavior in October 2003, was criticized by some of Spitzer’s peers for using biased respondents. Specifically, 65 percent of the participants had been told of the study by the National Association for the Research and Therapy of Homosexuality (NARTH), a secular group supporting the right to pursue change of sexual orientation, or by therapists and ministries devoted to encouraging homosexuals to abandon gay lifestyles. Critics also faulted the report for relying on self-reports and being inapplicable to society at large. “As scientists, we must disbelieve Spitzer’s data because they are so compromised by subject selection bias as to raise serious objections to any claims Spitzer might make about their meaning and generalizability,” wrote Kenneth Cohen, a counselor at Cornell University’s Gannett Health Center, in Archives of Sexual Behavior. Moreover, psychologists Michael Schroeder and Ariel Shidlo presented data at the same APA meeting contradicting Spitzer’s results. Their five-year study on the effects of homosexual “conversion therapies” found that 178 of their 202 subjects failed in such therapies and that most reported suffering mental stress or emotional pain from the treatment.

One of the key problems in determining the efficacy of reorientation therapy is that there is no single definition of sexual orientation.

“Whether one can say that sexual orientation is being changed depends on how narrowly one defines sexual orientation or if it can be defined at all,” wrote Warren Throckmorton, an associate professor of psychology at Grove City College in Pennsylvania, in a 1998 article in the Journal of Mental Health Counseling.

Most members of NARTH share the view that homosexuality is a developmental disorder. Adam Jessel, a NARTH member and therapist who has treated Steve, has said he tries to help his clients control their same-sex attraction, rather than to “cure” them. But Christian, Jewish and Muslim leaders have diverging doctrine on whether homosexual is an actual disorder and what its causes are.

Several respected scientific findings point to at least some involvement of biology in homosexuality. Among them is a 2005 genome study conducted by the University of Illinois at Chicago that found about 60 percent of gay brothers shared four stretches of DNA that appeared to be linked to sexual orientation. The findings first appeared in the March 2005 issue of Human Genetics. Brian Mustanski, a psychologist in the university’s department of psychiatry and lead author of the study, found the DNA stretches on three different chromosomes in the nucleus of cells of the human male. “There is no one gay gene,” said Mustanski. “Sexual orientation is a complex trait, so it’s not surprising that we found several DNA regions involved in its expression. Our best guess is that multiple genes, potentially interacting with environmental influences, explain differences in sexual orientation.”

Such findings have been used to argue all sides of the issue. Norman Goldwasser, an Orthodox Jewish psychologist who treats patients with unwanted homosexual inclinations at his Florida clinic, said he sees homosexuality as a result of traumatic experiences or dysfunctional family dynamics but also believes that biology can play a role. Goldwasser said homosexual tendencies can be modified or healed “just as other biologically oriented issues [can].” In short, he said that people’s biology need not become their destiny

But while some Orthodox rabbis have characterized homosexuality as a disease for at least some people with same-sex tendencies, the heads of the Conservative and Reform rabbis in Israel reject the concept of homosexuality as a psychological problem subject to change. “Jewish law clearly prohibits eating pork; no one would suggest that someone who has an inclination to eat pork has a psychological difficulty,” said Rabbi Andrew Sacks, director of the Conservative movement’s Rabbinical Assembly in Israel.

Not all Jews share the same viewpoint. “We don’t see it as a disease,” said Rabbi Kinneret Shiryon, chairperson of the Reform movement’s Israel Council of Progressive Rabbis. “There’s nothing to cure.”

The Roman Catholic Church, in a 1986 letter approved by Pope John Paul II, refers to homosexual inclination as an “objective disorder.” Some Catholics say, however, that the church’s reference to a disorder is meant in the philosophical, not psychological, sense. The letter rejects the “demeaning assumption that the sexual behavior of homosexual persons is always and totally compulsive,” said Father John Francis Harvey, author of the 1996 book The Truth About Homosexuality: The Cry of the Faithful.

Harvey is the founding director of a Catholic support group called Courage, which enlists a 12-step program similar to the one used by Alcoholics Anonymous, or AA, to help people with homosexual inclinations be chaste. By modeling its program after AA, Courage draws a comparison between homosexuality and alcoholism that is widespread among supporters of reorientation therapy. Just as alcoholics can conquer their addiction through will and effort, so too — Courage’s argument goes — can people with homosexual inclinations bring their desires under control.

Similar to the way other organizations look to treat homosexuality, Courage refers to its clients as “people with same-sex attractions” in an effort to portray homosexuality as one of many possible personal problems rather than as a description of identity. “We changed the terminology,” said Harvey, who has a master’s degree in psychology and a doctorate in theology. “We don’t like ‘gay,’ ‘lesbian’ or ‘homosexual.’ We see these as labels.”

Among some major Protestant denominations, including the Presbyterian and Episcopal Churches, there is a split over whether homosexuality really is a psychological problem and whether it can — or should — be treated.

“It’s not viewed as a disorder by the majority of the church,” said the Rev. Jan Nunley, communication deputy at the Episcopal Church, which consists of 2 million to 3 million worshipers in roughly 7,500 congregations across the United States. She added, however, that some member churches do attempt to treat people with homosexual inclinations. The church’s official position is that any religious or psychological treatment for sexual orientation must not be coercive or manipulative.

The Presbyterian Church sees the issue of whether sexual orientation can be chosen or changed as a matter of crucial significance, but says it is a question yet to be settled. However, the pastoral guide for OneByOne, a Presbyterian organization that helps churches reach out to people “struggling with homosexuality,” said that “the homosexual orientation is not chosen and, therefore, is not sinful in and of itself.”

There has not been a lot of reorientation therapy in the Presbyterian Church, said Kristin Johnson, executive director of OneByOne. The conservative wing has largely sufficed with voicing negative views of homosexuality, while the liberal wing sees no reason to advocate changing a drive it sees as “healthy and normal,” she said.

The Southern Baptist Convention rejects biology as a possible factor in the formation of homosexuality, instead pointing to environmental factors such as family dynamics and sexual abuse. Citing NARTH President Joseph Nicolosi, it says that because homosexuality is a condition — not an identity — that a homosexual person simply does not exist.

Muslim theologians, meanwhile, tend to see homosexuality as environmental, although some Muslim and Arab medical professionals are open to the possibility of biological factors.

While homosexuality is not a “normal behavior,” its causes have yet to be determined with certainty, said Dr. Hossam E. Fadel, chairman of the Islamic Medical Association of North America’s ethics committee.  Fadel said some Muslim clinicians in North America provide reorientation therapy. But in other parts of the world, Muslims and Arabs may be too frightened to either come out as gay or seek treatment to reduce their same-sex attractions.

It is quite rare for Arabs to seek treatment for homosexuality, said Dr. Issam Bannoura, director of the Bethlehem Mental Hospital in the West Bank. Bannoura classified homosexuality as untreatable abnormal behavior but not a disorder. “For such cases they don’t go to doctors in Arab society. It’s a great stigma for them,” he said.
Regardless of whether religious leaders and mental-health professionals view homosexuality as biological, genetic or both, those who support reparative therapy all agree on one thing: Some people can alter their sexual orientation.

As for “Steve,” he said that while he doesn’t know if he will be able to completely stop his homosexual behavior or come to terms with his attraction for men, he continues to believe that change is possible. “The will is greater than anything else in the world.”


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Extended News; Philosophy
KEYWORDS: gayagenda; gays; homosexualagenda; homosexuality; narth; psychology

1 posted on 05/05/2006 12:43:16 PM PDT by DBeers
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

To: AFA-Michigan; AggieCPA; Agitate; AliVeritas; AllTheRage; An American In Dairyland; Annie03; ...
Homosexual Agenda Ping!

If you oppose the homosexualization of society
-add yourself to the ping list!

To be included in or removed from the
HOMOSEXUAL AGENDA PING LIST,
please FReepMail either DBeers or DirtyHarryY2k.

Free Republic homosexual agenda keyword search
[ Add keyword = homosexualagenda to flag FR articles to this ping list ]

FYI

Lengthy. Lots of info & links...

2 posted on 05/05/2006 12:45:20 PM PDT by DBeers (†)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: DBeers

I guess being captured and held prisoner in Iraq has given the girl who wrote this a lot to think about!


3 posted on 05/05/2006 12:47:25 PM PDT by gr8eman (Everybody is a rocket scientist...until launch day!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: DBeers

The Gay lobby will fight any designation of homosexuality as a 'disorder' because that implies a 'cure' is possible.


4 posted on 05/05/2006 12:48:37 PM PDT by Semper Paratus
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: DBeers

"Our best guess is that multiple genes, potentially interacting with environmental influences, explain differences in sexual orientation.”

Best guess? That sounds scientific.


5 posted on 05/05/2006 12:49:30 PM PDT by mlc9852
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Semper Paratus


That is what they have been fighting all along that IT IS a "disordered" state.



6 posted on 05/05/2006 12:52:00 PM PDT by dcnd9
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 4 | View Replies]

To: DBeers

quote "the homosexual orientation is not chosen and, therefore, is not sinful in and of itself"

rofl!

So I guess people born with the need to kill people aren't committing a sin either since they didn't choose to be born with the need to murder people.


7 posted on 05/05/2006 12:54:25 PM PDT by conservative physics
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: DBeers

Steve is right.....

“The will is greater than anything else in the world.”

By the grace of God we can overcome anything!


8 posted on 05/05/2006 12:56:25 PM PDT by dcnd9
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: DBeers
It doesn't matter if homosexuality is biological or environmental or both. I'm a 24 year old male, as such, I have this overwhelming desire to have sex with as money fine looking women as I can.

But to do so would be a sin, and as such, I will wait for marriage and after marriage my wife is the only one who will share my bed. It doesn't matter that I was born lustful tendencies. What matters is what God empowers me to do about it and the choice I make.
9 posted on 05/05/2006 12:58:44 PM PDT by JamesP81
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: mlc9852
Best guess? That sounds scientific.

LOL -the false premised voodoo science was actually introduced just prior to the "best guess" throw away when Mustanski stated: "“There is no one gay gene,” “Sexual orientation is a complex trait,”"

Actually, NO gay gene or genes have been identified -he implies there are some. Additionally he declares that there is something he can not identify and or measure termed “sexual orientation" and goes further by terming his faithful belief in the existence of “sexual orientation" a trait (Trait: an innate genetically determined characteristic or condition)...

10 posted on 05/05/2006 1:02:39 PM PDT by DBeers (†)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 5 | View Replies]

To: DBeers

I get confused whether homosexuals want to believe they don't have a choice and we should just accept them or it is a choice and our children should choose homosexuality.


11 posted on 05/05/2006 1:09:51 PM PDT by mlc9852
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 10 | View Replies]

To: conservative physics
So I guess people born with the need to kill people aren't committing a sin either since they didn't choose to be born with the need to murder people.

According to most Christians, no, they're not... unless and until they act on that need. Note the quote. "The homosexual orientation is not chosen and, therefore, is not sinful..." It doesn't say "The act of homosexual fornication is not chosen and, therefore, is not sinful..." They're saying you can't choose to whom you're attracted and so won't be held accountable for that... but you can choose what to do about your attraction.

Put another way, since fornication between any two people is sinful, being attracted to another person of the same sex is just as sinful as being attracted to a person of the opposite sex to whom you are not married.

You don't sin, according to the popular view, until you actually commit a sinful act.

Of course, Christians with this view aren't familiar with Matthew 5:28. Those that are realize that all lust (heterosexual or homosexual) is sinful, that all of us are guilty of it, and that we all need God's forgiveness.

12 posted on 05/05/2006 1:22:37 PM PDT by bigLusr (Quidquid latine dictum sit altum viditur)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 7 | View Replies]

To: DBeers
"the Abrahamic faiths continue their struggle to define views on homosexuality"

Orthodox Judaism has no struggle in its definition of homosexuality.
Fake Rabbis-i.e. reform do not practice Judaism and if they have a struggle it is because they continually remake their beliefs
13 posted on 05/05/2006 1:28:53 PM PDT by avile
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: conservative physics
"So I guess people born with the need to kill people aren't committing a sin either since they didn't choose to be born with the need to murder people."

That's an interesting statement. Supposed the person born "with a need to kill" was mentally deficient / retarded to not be able to differentiate between right and wrong. The act of killing someone is certainly a sin. but if the one doing the killing is not capable of processing that critical tid bit of information, could he still be considered guilty of a sin?
14 posted on 05/05/2006 1:48:05 PM PDT by taxed2death (A few billion here, a few trillion there...we're all friends right?)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 7 | View Replies]

To: DBeers
What really amazes me about this whole nature vs. nurture debate on homosexuality is that conservatives and liberals tend to be on the other side of the fence when it comes to almost any behavior except sexual orientation. Stereotypical male and female behavior? Conservatives think it's inborn while liberals think it's cultural. Violent criminals? Conservatives want to lock them up because they can't be rehabilitated while liberals believe they can be rehabilitated. And so on.

Is consistency really that difficult to ask for? Yes, I know these issues can be different but if you can imagine sex roles being biological, is it that difficult to imagine that sexual orientation might also be biological, or vice versa?

15 posted on 05/05/2006 1:54:59 PM PDT by Question_Assumptions
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: JamesP81

Well put. It is part of the curse. It can be washed by the blood of the Lamb.


16 posted on 05/05/2006 2:10:18 PM PDT by vpintheak (What's worse, a liberal, or a know it all posing as a Conservative?)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 9 | View Replies]

To: Question_Assumptions
The whole notion of "sexual orientation" is BS. Tab A goes in Slot B. That's the way we are made. Until I see a man with a vagina and ovaries or a woman with a penis and testicles I will not be convinced otherwise. Sexual attraction exists only to induce mating in order to propagate the species. Many humans happen to think sexual intercourse is fun and enjoyable, but that does not make any sexual intercourse or any attraction that leads to intercourse natural.
17 posted on 05/05/2006 2:17:07 PM PDT by Dems_R_Losers
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 15 | View Replies]

To: Dems_R_Losers
You are confusing "inborn" with "natural" or, more likely, "normal" or "desirable" or "correct". Some children are born fused to their twins. Some children are born with no brains. Some children are born with genetic defects like Down's Syndrome. That's the way they are born. That doesn't make it "normal", "desirable", or "correct". As for sexual desires having a reproductive purpose, people experience hunger to eat to survive but that can get out of control, too, and produce all sorts of problems. If you think every person is born perfect and correct and only bad choices mess them up, you better do some more research on all of the defects that plenty of children are born with. Something can be "inborn" and "natural" and still be a "defect" or "abnormal".

Please also note that I personally believe that behavior is a product of nature and nuture, which has implications that neither side likes.

18 posted on 05/05/2006 2:27:15 PM PDT by Question_Assumptions
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 17 | View Replies]

To: Question_Assumptions

I don't know of any "natural defects" that leave the victim 100% able in every aspect of mental cognition and physical health except one odd preference. If you could give me another example I might change my mind.


19 posted on 05/05/2006 3:34:36 PM PDT by nitzy (Every man needs a credo)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 18 | View Replies]

To: 1st-P-In-The-Pod; A_Conservative_in_Cambridge; af_vet_rr; agrace; ahayes; Alexander Rubin; ...
FRmail me to be added or removed from this Judaic/pro-Israel/Russian Jewry ping list.

Warning! This is a high-volume ping list.

20 posted on 05/05/2006 3:35:26 PM PDT by Alouette (Psalms of the Day: 39-43)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Semper Paratus
The Gay lobby will fight any designation of homosexuality as a 'disorder' because that implies a 'cure' is possible.

Not to mention "disorder" implies that homosexuality is abnormal.

21 posted on 05/05/2006 4:16:28 PM PDT by GATOR NAVY (Homeward bound from the Gulf)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 4 | View Replies]

To: Question_Assumptions
What really amazes me about this whole nature vs. nurture debate on homosexuality is that conservatives and liberals tend to be on the other side of the fence when it comes to almost any behavior except sexual orientation.

First, "sexual orientation" is not a behavior -as such, I would suggest your amazement to be unfounded. Second, I assume your anecdotal and stereotypical assumptions support at least one point; however, the point eludes me... Maybe if you would just cut to the chase e.g. "sexual orientation" is not a scientifically identified "trait" OR "sexual orientation" is a controversial subject?

Stereotypical male and female behavior? Conservatives think it's inborn while liberals think it's cultural.

Let me add that scientists have proved actual physical inborn differences between males and females -no speculation or critical thinking necessary. Oddly enough, human beings observed that are physically females tend to exhibit female traits while human beings observed that are physically males tend to exhibit male traits -they have even done statistically significant repeatable studies on this stuff...

Violent criminals? Conservatives want to lock them up because they can't be rehabilitated while liberals believe they can be rehabilitated.

I don't know what you are attempting by adding this stereotype into the mix? Are you suggesting that conservatives tend to feel habitually bad behavior implies potentially more bad behavior WHILE at the same time suggesting that liberals do not feel habitually bad behavior implies potentially more bad behavior YET think rehabilitation is necessary? Regardless my correct or incorrect assumptions as to your implied point(s), please elaborate specifically in regards to the homosexual condition -what point are you making specifically?

And so on.

Well, I would suggest you have not yet laid a foundation with which to "And so on" from...

Is consistency really that difficult to ask for?

I would suggest you might now have a better feel for where many apparent contradictions originate -garbage in, garbage out... I suggest you question your assumptions again...

Yes, I know these issues can be different but if you can imagine sex roles being biological, is it that difficult to imagine that sexual orientation might also be biological, or vice versa?

As stated prior -male and female are physically observable commodities -innate realities with many traits scientifically proved predominantly correlated to each sex exclusively. Sexual orientation at this time is but a leftist construct with no physical measurable scientific basis. Sexual orientation lacks ANY physical reality with which science might possibly even begin to associate any roles or traits to -sexual orientation at this time is ALL imagination...

22 posted on 05/05/2006 5:01:05 PM PDT by DBeers (†)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 15 | View Replies]

To: DBeers
A simple argument demonstrating that pederasty/anal intercourse is unnatural is showing the health results like shorter life span or such embarrassing afflictions like fecal incontinence.
23 posted on 05/05/2006 7:01:24 PM PDT by A. Pole (Deng Xiaoping: "It doesn't matter whether the cat is black or white, as long as it catches mice.")
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: nitzy
I don't know of any "natural defects" that leave the victim 100% able in every aspect of mental cognition and physical health except one odd preference. If you could give me another example I might change my mind.

There are all sorts of them, from a possible genetic component to addictions like alcoholism to minor mental defects ranging from functional autism and people who, for example, don't experience fear. Take a good look at all of the oddball human defects out there. There are plenty of very narrow ones.

24 posted on 05/05/2006 8:02:00 PM PDT by Question_Assumptions
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 19 | View Replies]

To: bigLusr
Put another way, since fornication between any two people is sinful, being attracted to another person of the same sex is just as sinful as being attracted to a person of the opposite sex to whom you are not married.

How is one to go forth and multiply--following God's command--when the means is sin in the form of attraction? Perhaps you meant to say "lust after," which is different. Your general idea is certainly biblical.

You don't sin, according to the popular view, until you actually commit a sinful act.

I wonder how many of those calling themselves Christians that hold to that view also accept a works righteousness view of salvation. The Bible clearly rules out both.
25 posted on 05/05/2006 8:06:57 PM PDT by Das Outsider (Are Marxist academics and apostate bishops trustworthy enough to tell you who the "real" Jesus is?)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 12 | View Replies]

To: DBeers
>>The Southern Baptist Convention rejects biology as a possible factor in the formation of homosexuality, instead pointing to environmental factors such as family dynamics and sexual abuse. <<

I wonder how they know that...

The bible says homosexuality is a sin - that is not is dispute. But i don't see where the biological nature or environmental nature is something we have such a vested interest in. My inclination is to let interested researchers work out the science - its not like anything they can find can change what the bible says.
26 posted on 05/05/2006 8:16:56 PM PDT by gondramB (He who angers you, in part, controls you. But he may not enjoy what the rest of you does about it.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: DBeers
First, "sexual orientation" is not a behavior -as such, I would suggest your amazement to be unfounded.

You are splitting hairs. It's a mental preference that leads to certain behaviors.

Second, I assume your anecdotal and stereotypical assumptions support at least one point; however, the point eludes me... Maybe if you would just cut to the chase e.g. "sexual orientation" is not a scientifically identified "trait" OR "sexual orientation" is a controversial subject?

Do you think that women are naturally specifically attracted to men and not to women and that men are naturally specifically attracted to women and not men or do you think that men and women are blank slates that that learn to be attracted to members of the opposite sex. If you think that men and women can be born with an attraction to a specific (opposite) sex, then it's possible for a person's brain to be (mis-)wired to attract them to the same sex. Either sexual attraction is learned, inborn, or some combination of the two. If it has an inborn component, then that inborn component can be wired wrong.

Let me add that scientists have proved actual physical inborn differences between males and females -no speculation or critical thinking necessary.

Yet as critics of nature will tell you, scientists also have proven that there is a range of inborn behavior such that some women can be very butch and masculine and some men very wimpy and feminine. And, oddly enough, gay men are often considered effeminate and lesbians are often considered butch.

Oddly enough, human beings observed that are physically females tend to exhibit female traits while human beings observed that are physically males tend to exhibit male traits -they have even done statistically significant repeatable studies on this stuff...

I'm not disputing that. But look at the word you are using -- "tend". Most "tend" to. Some don't. Most women tend to be attracted to men and vice-versa. That does not mean that some men and women can't be wired the wrong way. We all start out as a sperm and egg and are built in the womb to be one way or the other. And don't think mistakes (some mighty big) don't happen during human development.

I don't know what you are attempting by adding this stereotype into the mix? Are you suggesting that conservatives tend to feel habitually bad behavior implies potentially more bad behavior WHILE at the same time suggesting that liberals do not feel habitually bad behavior implies potentially more bad behavior YET think rehabilitation is necessary? Regardless my correct or incorrect assumptions as to your implied point(s), please elaborate specifically in regards to the homosexual condition -what point are you making specifically?

I think that at least some conservatives believe that classes of criminals, including sociopaths and child molesters, are mentally defective and can't be fixed. Further, I think at least some conservatives accept that some people are born this way, though you would be correct to point out that others don't.

As stated prior -male and female are physically observable commodities -innate realities with many traits scientifically proved predominantly correlated to each sex exclusively.

Again, look at your words. To "predominantly correlate" is not an absolute correlation. That means that some men or women can fall outside of the norm -- like being attracted to the wrong sex.

Sexual orientation at this time is but a leftist construct with no physical measurable scientific basis. Sexual orientation lacks ANY physical reality with which science might possibly even begin to associate any roles or traits to -sexual orientation at this time is ALL imagination...

It's clear that men and women are designed to be attracted to the opposite sex and normally are. Why is it impossible to believe that if a brain can be programmed to be attracted to the opposite sex (or better at language or math or whatever) that it can be misprogrammed since we all start out physiologically unisex and develop into a male or female? You are aware that children are born with indeterminate physical sex and all sorts of other odd defects, right? If a person's physical development can go wrong, why can't their mental development? And, by the way, yes, they've noticed structural differences in gay brains, too.

Please note that I'm not claiming the biological tendency must be followed. I do think that people have some choice in the matter, too.

27 posted on 05/05/2006 8:22:45 PM PDT by Question_Assumptions
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 22 | View Replies]

To: Question_Assumptions
You are splitting hairs. It's a mental preference that leads to certain behaviors.

Actually no -I am simply telling you the bald headed man has no hair regardless the various toupees you might introduce for discussion...

Society legislates activities, scientists measure physical realities... I will consider it amazing if anyone finds a way to objectively predict mental preferences without at least one physical attribute to associate and correlate the preferences with (science) rather than depending upon (faith) subjective self declaration e.g. "feelings"...

Scientists can no more identify a Christian as they can identify a homosexual UNLESS they correlate to an activity and make assumptions e.g. an individual states they were born a Christian, or states they prefer to go to church, or is seen in a church etcetera... NOTHING innate about that -the mental preference is ASSUMED to exist...

Either sexual attraction is learned, inborn, or some combination of the two. If it has an inborn component, then that inborn component can be wired wrong.

As to the debate regarding homosexual activity being disordered -some specific cause of sexual attraction not yet found only matters to homosexual activists...

I myself do not concern myself with the homosexual elusive IF because homosexual activists' faith in the orientation "missing link" is not relevant to a debate of facts. So, why bring it up?

Homosexual activists attempt to prove homosexual activity normal while heterosexuals do not need to prove heterosexuality is normal because it is objectively obvious -there are males and females & procreation populates the species...

Conversely, homosexual activity is objectively disordered - regardless the unhealthy issues inherent to the disordred activity, a population that practiced homosexual sex would become extinct -again, no proof is necessary...

Yet as critics of nature will tell you, scientists also have proven that there is a range of inborn behavior such that some women can be very butch and masculine and some men very wimpy and feminine. And, oddly enough, gay men are often considered effeminate and lesbians are often considered butch.

LOL -where exactly is this proved research? You seem to have skipped a step and fell back into false premise land. Let me reitterate the hurdle you consistently ignore: Sexual orientation lacks ANY physical reality with which science might possibly even begin to associate any roles or traits to -sexual orientation at this time is ALL imagination...

I'm not disputing that. But look at the word you are using -- "tend". Most "tend" to. Some don't.

I am glad you concede it is not possible to dispute reality. As to the term "tend" -you understand that there are exceptions that deviate from the norm e.g. abnormal e.g. homosexual activity. A man that is driven to have sex with another man is deviating from the norm NOT creating a new norm with no scientific basis!

Again, look at your words. To "predominantly correlate" is not an absolute correlation.

Yes! You are correct -so what! I just pointed out above WHY this is a reality not relevant to the discussion...

And, by the way, yes, they've noticed structural differences in gay brains, too.

Stop the presses -THERE IS NO "GAY" BRAIN. Again it appears you have skipped a step and fell back into false premise land. Now what do you really mean -- Do you mean the brains of men who have engaged in homosexual activity over a certain duration of time have changed as a result of the activity or some unknown factor X - OR - do you actually suggest that infant brains can be measured at birth and homosexual activity can be predicted e.g. the "GAY" BRAIN?

Please note that I'm not claiming the biological tendency must be followed. I do think that people have some choice in the matter, too.

Actually people can ALL choose to engage in or not engage in sexual activity unless they are raped -WHATEVER their tendency...

28 posted on 05/05/2006 11:01:26 PM PDT by DBeers (†)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 27 | View Replies]

To: DBeers
"Actually people can ALL choose to engage in or not engage in sexual activity unless they are raped -WHATEVER their tendency..."

I agree but that doesn't mean that gay people have a choice in being attracted to the same sex.

Heres how I can prove that no matter how someone gets their sexual orientation, it is set; If Jesus himself came down from Heaven and told you that not only is gay sex moral, its immoral to not have gay sex, could you have sex with a member of the same sex? Of course not, your not attracted to the same sex. Its set in stone that way.

There is nothing that will change my sexual attractions. Gay sex is gross, and the gay Vito theme on the Sopranos makes me cringe. Do you honestly think that a normal straight guy would just decide he wants a man?
29 posted on 05/05/2006 11:14:34 PM PDT by RHINO369
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 28 | View Replies]

To: DBeers

Maybe it's nature's way of reducing the population growth a bit. Other techniques used in the past include wars, famines, plagues, floods, and so on. Perhaps this is just another self-regulation being done.


30 posted on 05/05/2006 11:17:33 PM PDT by Cementjungle
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: RHINO369

>>There is nothing that will change my sexual attractions. Gay sex is gross, and the gay Vito theme on the Sopranos makes me cringe. Do you honestly think that a normal straight guy would just decide he wants a man?<<

That makes sense to me.

I have not studied this so I just have my layman's reaction.

I'm quite sure I did not choose to be straight - it just came naturally - its a part of who I am - what makes "Me." So it does not not seem strange to me to think that gay people don't choose that either.

Now, I've known girls who had gay flings but I know other women who find that idea as offensive as I would find trying to sleep with a man (I'm in the "I would probably prefer to just die instead" category).

I don't think the women who won't sleep with other women are simply making a choice - I think they are in some way different from women who are able to enjoy that.


31 posted on 05/06/2006 9:40:35 AM PDT by gondramB (He who angers you, in part, controls you. But he may not enjoy what the rest of you does about it.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 29 | View Replies]

To: RHINO369
I agree but that doesn't mean that gay people have a choice in being attracted to the same sex.

That is not the point I argue -society can not legislate feelings as society can not read minds. People may feel compelled to do any number of things; however, action involves choice OTHERWISE people would never be guilty of crimes...

Heres how I can prove that no matter how someone gets their sexual orientation, it is set;

It is your belief that there is some innate physical entity separate from the objectively obvious and undeniable physical sexual attributes exclusively male and female called orientation -a belief that scientists have not proved. Not able to prove something even exists HOW can one claim it to be "set"? Sexual organs are set -"orientation" is a construct that in the case of homosexuals has no physical premise...

Without physical premise it was at one time theorized that disordered sexual orientation was a mental condition; however, the APA recently based upon no science declared this not to be the case.

If orientation is not mental OR physical it should necessarily follow that there is no such animal unless one claims belief in an innate unprovable mystical premise for sexual orientation... Regardless, the approach there is no proof of an innate "set" sexual orientation - there is ONLY belief... Promoting such a belief is in essence promoting homosexual agenda propaganda...

32 posted on 05/06/2006 1:04:19 PM PDT by DBeers (†)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 29 | View Replies]

To: DBeers
I'm not promoting a homosexual agenda, I'm just saying their attraction is probably set in stone, and those who continue you just dismiss homosexuality as immorality of the weak are clearly wrong. Plus just because a person can't make a decision to not be gay doesn't in any way make it normal. Its abnormal. I figure there may be a way to cure homosexuality, be threw drugs or therapy.

Depression is common (much more so than homosexuality) and can be caused by hereditary and environmental causes, but it can be managed with drugs.
33 posted on 05/06/2006 1:32:54 PM PDT by RHINO369
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 32 | View Replies]

To: JamesP81
But to do so would be a sin, and as such, I will wait for marriage and after marriage my wife is the only one who will share my bed. It doesn't matter that I was born lustful tendencies. What matters is what God empowers me to do about it and the choice I make.

Amen to that. We can do all things through Christ who strengthens us. My wife and I waited until after marriage as well. We are so completely grateful that we did.

34 posted on 05/06/2006 1:43:13 PM PDT by Hoodat ( Silly Dems, AYBABTU.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 9 | View Replies]

To: RHINO369
I figure there may be a way to cure homosexuality, be threw drugs or therapy.

There may be ways to control or modify the behavior (psychology) BUT the APA has decreed this approach a sacred cow to be avoided at all costs.

A physical "cure" would first require scientifically identifying the innate exclusively homosexual "thing(s)" or causes of objective conditions that some belief exist but science has yet to find.

Either way -not much happening now regarding help for those suffering the homosexual disorder -the leftists apparently like it that way -less homosexuals = less votes?

35 posted on 05/06/2006 2:03:31 PM PDT by DBeers (†)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 33 | View Replies]

To: DBeers
Its not happening because the political correctness of this society refuses to let certain things be studied.

One way to reduce homosexuality is to make child molestation a one strike and your out crime. Alot of homosexuality is thought to occur because as a child they were molested, and that changes how their brain develops.
36 posted on 05/06/2006 2:13:20 PM PDT by RHINO369
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 35 | View Replies]

To: DBeers

Recommeded read: A wonderful book, summarizing how this terrible politically driven tragedy came to be, robbing gender confused indivuals from any hope of help: Homosexuality and the Politics of Truth, by Harbard professor Jeffrey Satinover.

As a result of the horrible decision of the ALA, today therapists can lose their licences if they are "caught" treating people who want to stop their deleterious homosexual encounters.

Recommeded: Do a good dead and let all the young people you know who have been brainwashed into homosexual behavior know they do have choices, despite the APA having done its best to rob such people of a choice for the past 30 years. Direct them to: www.Jonahweb.org and www.NARTH.org.


37 posted on 05/06/2006 11:22:06 PM PDT by Seeing More Clearly Now (How many thousands of lives and families has the American Psychological Association destroyed?)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: DBeers
You can find a good review of the reasearch into differences in brain physiology between heterosexual and homosexual men here (feel free to ignore the Kinsey stuff -- I do). Now you can argue that those differences are caused by homosexual behavior rather than producing homosexual behavior, but there is evidence that sexual orientation and behavior can be set at birth (e.g., the case of David Reimer) and that sexual orientation and behavior is influenced by genetics (e.g., Turner's Syndrome). Also, Steve Sailor wrote a pretty funny article published in National Review called Why Lesbians Aren't Gay that suggests that gays and lesbians have a whole host of atypical views and behaviors that extend well beyond sexual preference.

I think the most indicative research into what's really going on is the twin study by J. Michael Bailey and Richard Pillard that showed 52% of identical twins shared being gay, 22% of fraternal twins shared being gay, and 5% of non-related adopted brothers shared being gay. That's exactly what you'd expect if it was a combination of nature and nurture because other separated twin studies have shown similar correlation for other tendencies including political beliefs. In other words, genetics give people a tencency to be a certain way but they have the ability to change and choose differently. If it were 100% genetic or inborn, you'd expect 100% of identical twins to share the same sexual orientation. If it were non-genetic, you'd expect that 5% number (which, contrary to Kinsey's 10% and the 2% given by some anti-gay activists, is what marketing types assume as the percentage of gays and it's their business to get that right without politics getting in the way). The ~50%, ~25%, and ~5% is exactly what you'd expect if genetics were about half of what determines whether a person will be gay or not. But it also means that a person can also decide what they want to be or be persuaded to be something different than their natural tendency. And, no, that's not the absolute either-or choice that advocates on both sides of the debate are looking for. It means that a person can have a tendency to be gay or lesbian but it also means that people can be shifted from one side to the other.

38 posted on 05/06/2006 11:28:59 PM PDT by Question_Assumptions
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 28 | View Replies]

To: JamesP81

good post


39 posted on 05/09/2006 7:54:00 PM PDT by thehumanlynx (“All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing.” -Edmund Burke)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 9 | View Replies]

To: JamesP81

also, I'm 25 y/o male, and share your same sentiment about the sanctity of the marriage bed. In December, my wait will be over. HOORAY. I'll have to catch up on missed time, but I encourage you to stay committed as it will all be worth it eventually.


40 posted on 05/09/2006 7:55:20 PM PDT by thehumanlynx (“All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing.” -Edmund Burke)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 9 | View Replies]

To: RHINO369; gondramB
There is nothing that will change my sexual attractions. Gay sex is gross,

Although I recognize the effort to continually be masculine at all times, as such, I would probably say the same things at times.. but...
If you were inundated with homosexuality constantly for years and years, it was glorified, you were told that it was okay and even desirable, your wife cheated on you and left you, you were forced to move to key west where all the happiest people you knew were gay adn so on and so on... It is completely arrogant to believe that you alone are capable of being unaffected by certain things. How many people never believe they would cheat on their wife but start to flirt (innocently) and it escalates to a 4 month affair? You are not so special that you are so deadset in a mindset that it couldnt change. Many things can change over time.

That is the way sin works, it starts out small and what was once just a little mistake has snowballed and you end up in a place that you never thought you would be

And although it is unlikely that I would ever switch to craving some homo sex, it is possible because I am fallible. I am not immune to making mistakes and neither are you.

Gay people act in a way that they choose to. You can go out and be gay for a night if you want and then go back to your wife, and you were just as gay as the lifelong homo. Its a choice to live a life in defiance of nature and more importantly God.

41 posted on 05/09/2006 8:24:16 PM PDT by thehumanlynx (“All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing.” -Edmund Burke)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 29 | View Replies]

To: thehumanlynx

Its not being masculine, its telling the truth. Gay people obviously are drawn to being gay from something. Because almost all of them weren't raised in some gay paradise, they were raised in comparable living conditions as I was.

You couldn't pay me enough money to have sex with a man, but I'd probably have sex with the ugliest woman in the world for 1000 bucks.


42 posted on 05/09/2006 8:55:48 PM PDT by RHINO369
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 41 | View Replies]

To: JamesP81

AMEN! CONTRATS ON YOUR STAND.

More power to you.

And may God lead you and His best mate to each other in His best timing. And may you have the most fulfilling Friendship possible the rest of your natural days.


43 posted on 05/09/2006 9:06:35 PM PDT by Quix ( PREPARE . . . PRAY . . . PLACE your trust, hope, faith and life in God's hands moment by moment)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 9 | View Replies]

To: thehumanlynx
>>If you were inundated with homosexuality constantly for years and years, it was glorified, you were told that it was okay and even desirable, your wife cheated on you and left you, you were forced to move to key west where all the happiest people you knew were gay adn so on and so on... It is completely arrogant to believe that you alone are capable of being unaffected by certain things. How many people never believe they would cheat on their wife but start to flirt (innocently) and it escalates to a 4 month affair? You are not so special that you are so deadset in a mindset that it couldnt change. Many things can change over time.<<

I went to Rocky Horror for years had lots of gay friends and live in the city with highest concentration of Gays where lots of them seem quite happy - I watched Queer as folk (for a couple of years before it got lame and Will and Grace. I've been able to examine my sexuality in a nonjudgmental atmosphere and this allowed me to be quite sure I have not ever felt any inclination whatsoever to be gay.

So no, for me I don't think it could change. Other people are apparently bisexual and have a choice.

Besides, give all the influences you cite, if homosexuality was controlled by environment the number of gays should be sky rocketing.
44 posted on 05/10/2006 5:11:37 AM PDT by gondramB (He who angers you, in part, controls you. But he may not enjoy what the rest of you does about it.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 41 | View Replies]

To: gondramB
ok nevermind, the point is that its a choice and you or anyone else could choose to do it at any one point.

Other people... ALL of them have a choice. Congrats on being above the influence, and never having your worldview altered in the slightest way.

45 posted on 05/10/2006 3:35:16 PM PDT by thehumanlynx (“All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing.” -Edmund Burke)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 44 | View Replies]

To: thehumanlynx
>>Other people... ALL of them have a choice. Congrats on being above the influence, and never having your worldview altered in the slightest way.<<

I'm sorry if it sounded that way- of course I am indfluenced by what goes on around me. But on this one topic, and speaking only for myself, I have found heterosexuality to be a core part of who I am am ratheer than a choice. But since I have know quite a few bisexuals (mainly women but also a few men) so I understand that not everyone is like me on this.
46 posted on 05/10/2006 4:32:15 PM PDT by gondramB (He who angers you, in part, controls you. But he may not enjoy what the rest of you does about it.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 45 | View Replies]

To: gondramB
I am blantantly heterosexual as well, repulsed by all things gay (unlike you) but I recognize that under certain circumstances, albeit extreme ones, the potential for me to do some gay experimenting still exists. As it does for you, that is all I am saying. Doing those things may be the last thing either one of us would consider, but in a certain environment it could happen. Thats all I am saying...

I just find that people, guys especially, tend to heartily say "NO NO NO WAY, never me" it just seems illogical and arrogant.

Take pornography for example. A person may think that is disgusting as they drive by a prostitute or a strip club, thinking that it is deplorable. But they look at SI swimsuit one day, that turns into MAXIM magazine, which turns into playboy, which leads to the cess pool of the internet where they get caught up in a vile disgusting world that they would have NEVER thought they could get into, and so on...

That sort of thing happens. Thats all I'm saying. Now I have forgotten what the original story was even about.. LOL have good one.

47 posted on 05/15/2006 11:49:35 AM PDT by thehumanlynx (“All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing.” -Edmund Burke)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 46 | View Replies]

To: thehumanlynx

>>As it does for you, that is all I am saying. Doing those things may be the last thing either one of us would consider, but in a certain environment it could happen. Thats all I am saying...<<

I can't by logic rule that out. All I can say is that I have not ever felt same sex attraction and growing in Atlanta I have been exposed plenty. I would think it would have come up by now but I understand your point.


48 posted on 05/15/2006 12:56:31 PM PDT by gondramB (He who angers you, in part, controls you. But he may not enjoy what the rest of you does about it.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 47 | View Replies]

To: gondramB

Thats all I was saying. And I was pretty amazed the first time I drove through Atlanta at the number of gay establishments that littered the side of the road. Glad we could figure one another out. Until our next meeting, have a nice life.


49 posted on 05/17/2006 7:52:18 PM PDT by thehumanlynx (“All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing.” -Edmund Burke)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 48 | View Replies]

Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.

Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794
FreeRepublic.com is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson