Skip to comments.New Study: Sexual Orientation Can Be Changed
Posted on 07/07/2009 8:57:48 AM PDT by DesertRenegade
click here to read article
I believe I understand. Very pragmatic. (That’s supposed to be approving rather than snarky.)
Therefore, my tautology is implicit. You, on the other hand, attempt to win the argument by redefining the terms, and including a pathology under the definition of normal.
It appears to me that you're attempting to make your argument by conflating two meanings of normal.
For example if you are defining normal as ""the average or mean", there are an awful lot of people reading these words whose sexual behavior is "deviant" - in fact it's highly likely that most people reading these words have in this sense engaged in "deviant" sexual behavior of one sort or another.
And if you take "average" heterosexual sex acts your standard, you are certainly going to find some homosexuals less deviant from average heterosexual practices than some of their heterosexual counterparts, for example in a purely statistical sense homosexual couple practicing oral and anal sex are statistically a lot less "abnormal" than a heterosexual couple engaged in the more extreme sorts of S&M.
OTOH, if you are defining normal as "free from any mental disorder; sane", and you define homosexuality as a mental disorder, you have to keep in mind that there is no sexual act possible for a homosexual couple that cannot be committed by at least one partner at a time during heterosexual lovemaking. It's not the sexual act itself that can be deviant in the sense of "not heterosexual", it's the fact that both partners to the act happen be the same sex that on this view makes it more deviant than the same act performed by a heterosexual couple.
(For example, on this view homosexual lovers are more "abnormal" than heterosexual lovers, even if the homosexual couple are in a physically unconsummated relationship, sitting around drinking weak tea and playing Scrabble on Saturday night, while their heterosexual neighbors across the hall are taking turns flogging each other at the local dungeon).
So while I don't have a problem with regarding homosexuality as more "abnormal" in the statistical sense that heterosexuality, I think you get into much murkier waters if you try to describe it as abnormal in a functional psychological sense, especially as you're always going to have some homosexuals in relationships clearly ethically superior on any reasonable functional grounds to at least some of their heterosexual counterparts.
This isnt a study at all. It doesnt consist of an experiment with study participants, methodology, measurements, analysis or results. Instead, according to this so-called journal which I have a copy of NARTH mined nearly 100 years of research on attempts to change sexual orientation. Of course, the vast majority of those studies were done when aversion therapy was commonly practiced, when many people sought therapy because they were convicted of homosexual offenses before Lawrence v. Texas to avoid jail, when few clinicians bothered to do any kind of follow-up, and when the APA still considered homosexuality a mental illness. Much of this paper is an updated regurgitation of several other articles already posted on NARTHs web site.
Also, the so-called peer reviewed journal is not actually a journal. The Journal of Human Sexuality is actually a booklet published by NARTH themselves. In fact, its structured more like a book than a journal, with only one article whose title matches the title on the front cover. This journal is billed as volume 1, and was, according to its acknowledgment, conceived back when Joseph Nicolosi was still president at NARTH. At this rate, I would expect volume 2 to show up sometime in 2011.
The word I used to describe heterosexually oriented people was “normal”. I did not attach any moral riders to that term. The inverse of “normal” is “abnormal” or “deviant”. Once again, denotative, not judgmental.
But in fact, certain behaviors that are statistically deviant may also be considered wrong. People are free to exercise their moral as well as their mathmatical judgment. There is ample precedent in western — indeed, almost ALL — culture for the social rejection of homosexuality. Few human behaviors are so universally shunned, or tolerated only under aberrant circumstances as homosexuality. Even divorced from any religious context, it is arguable that homosexuality is “wrong”, at least for any workable social purpose. Maybe it’s wrong because it’s deviant, or maybe it’s deviant because it’s wrong. But both of those dimensions are present.
And while psychiatrists may be bound to evaluate homosexuality on a purely objective basis, the rest of society is free to apply whatever moral yardstick it chooses to that behavior.
Indeed. I think you strike the right balance there. My only worry was that people not conflate deviant with immoral and you addressed that very well while preserveing the ability to make moral judgements. I’m not a therapist but over the years my parents drilled into me the understanding that that is one of the biggest problems people face in owning up to and addressing problems in their lives so I nitpick whenever I think I’ve run into it.
Homosexuality = death bump
Sometimes an ex-homosexual male will marry an ex-homosexual woman, which is probably a better arrangement that having ex-homosexuals marry heterosexuals.
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