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Post 40

Wednesday, July 20, 2005 - 10:08amSanction this postReply
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Mark-

It's pointless to discuss whether or not homosexuality is a "natural" state, or not. The whole barnyard scenario you described has been gone over, to death. There are physiological things that can be learned about it, for sure, and sometimes that helps people understand things. For instance,  when some children are born, they have an androgyn (sp?) wash occur that either leaves them with an estrogen or testosterone deficiency. Women will have a more masculine makeup, men will have a more feminine makeup. That is nature. Nature and nurture both can lead, or combine. Whether or not a person has (or is analyzed as having) "confusion" really means no matter. What matters is their right to choose what pleases them, in terms of sexuality, and mate.  

The thing of it is, one doesn't have to be comfortable with homosexuals, or any other flavor of person. The right thing to do is to excercise tolerance, and acceptance. If that is not a given, then the onus for why it isn't falls back to the person doing the judging.




Post 41

Wednesday, July 20, 2005 - 12:09pmSanction this postReply
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See what happens when you go away for a day! Sorry- I'll get into this conversation in a few hours.- I am still alive.



Post 42

Wednesday, July 20, 2005 - 12:22pmSanction this postReply
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I concede that I know little about homosexuality and that some of my assertions concerning this subject are difficult to prove. However, after considering the arguments posted here, including the information and arguments contained in the link provided by Sarah, I still come back to the same conclusion. With no disrespect or disparagement intended toward anyone, homosexuality seems unnatural in the sense that it is antagonistic toward other aspects of humanness, such as the psychological visibility that may be achieved between a man and a woman. If this visibility is profoundly important and serves essential human needs, as theorized by Nathaniel Branden, then the question arises: do homosexual people forfeit important values/experiences by giving up the possibility of heterosexual relationships? To put this another way, if the profoundly important visibility that may attain between a particular man and a particular woman is essential to human flourishing because of the nature of humanness, but if such a supposedly unique experience can also attain between members of the same sex, how unique and profoundly important is the sexual visibility principle? I can hear the chorus: the experience is unique and essential for heterosexuals, just as it is for homosexuals. And perhaps this (unproven) assertion is true! But if it is true, why do homosexual men typically (not universally) have sexual relationships with a large number of men?

The link provided by Sarah was interesting and contains much that I wish I had time to explore in depth. However, some of the observations in her link support my impressions about this subject. For example, "homosexual" encounters tend to become less frequent in higher primates, more frequent in lower (less selective) primates; a major theory among scientists who try to understand the meaning of such animal behavior precisely accords with my observation about cows "bulling", namely that this behavior is a by-product of sexual drive and lack of selectivity; the alternative theory among scientists that Sarah stridently insists one must accept as true, namely that lower species engage in "homosexual" behavior as a consequence of  their "intent" (the very noun used to make this argument presented in Sarah's link), which is absurd because animals, even playful dogs and trained horses, do not have the capacity of intention. The link also cites the much publicized study of statistically higher correlation of sexual preference of identical twins (are they genetically identical?) raised apart, compared with fraternal twins.  However, this does not prove that homosexuality is an expression of genetic inevitability.  For example, if a female were born with less capacity for sensitivity and more "maleness", she could evolve into a happy heterosexual woman. However, if she were subjected to frightening trauma as a helpless child, she could reach false conclusions about her sexual identity that her slight "maleness", or slightly lessened "sensitivity" might (depending on her choices) accommodate, by reducing her felt aversion to "going against her deeper nature". Some of the "evidence" presented in the link appears pretty suspicious to me, as for example the claim that some species of birds observed somewhere were "exclusively homosexual"; and that it has been "proven" that some 2 or 3 year old children adamantly reject male or female roles and grow up to become homosexuals. Perhaps both assertions or bona fide and valid, but I've got real doubts about the truthfulness of such claims. 

I think that homosexuality is a normal human response to special adverse and abnormal circumstances. I have some idea of the struggle these people must face and the courage they must call on to do the things others take for granted. I sincerely hope that my sounding off about this has not caused discomfort to Mr. Kilbourne or to anyone else.

A few posters have commented on my alleged discomfort with this, my upset about that, my fear or intolerance or bigotry, not to mention my supposedly narrow cultural outlook. This is really evidence that the political mainstream has successfully promoted the notion that investigating this subject is out-of-bounds; that decent and responsible people ought not to question the received orthodoxy about this topic. Obviously, the discussion properly ought not be about my mental state for thinking what I think, but about facts and issues relating to the subject.

If it eventually is proven that homosexuality is an expression of one's physiology, rather than a sort of emotional problem, I will gladly eat my words.





Post 43

Wednesday, July 20, 2005 - 10:23amSanction this postReply
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On the same subject but in a slightly different vein, what international responsibility does the U.S. government have to recognize foreign gay marriages? I havenít done any research but from what can I see the U.S. government automatically recognizes straight marriages in regards to visitors or foreign residents in this country. What happens when other countries start making gay marriages legal, as some European nations have done/are doing? Itís one thing for the states to not recognize contracts from other states, but what about the same thing between different countries?

 
Must the government accept unconditionally these foreign contracts? Can the government discriminate legally, or realistically, against the legal contracts of foreign nationals? What retaliatory power would these nations have against this discrimination?
 
What happens when gay Americans start marrying overseas, or when gay Americans are marrying foreign nationals in foreign countries with foreign legal contracts? Could this possibly force the U.S. to recognize gay marriage?




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Post 44

Wednesday, July 20, 2005 - 1:29pmSanction this postReply
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Hi Mark:

I haven't personally taken any offense to your questioning, I don't think there is anything wrong with being curious about what determines sexual preference... just that personally, for myself, I don't really care. It seems to only come up with regards to homosexuality - I am not sure how much time anyone spends wondering what makes straight people straight. For myself, being attracted to and falling in love with someone is a physical and emotional response to recognizing grains of my most inner and essential being in another person. The gender of the package is not important to me, although certainly the packaging is. I am attracted to the way a person's hand curls around a cigarette, the sound of their laughter, a nice ass... the same sorts of things as anyone. It just isn't gender specific.

Just off the cuff, it seems like if that is caused by a trauma or abnormality, how fortunate.



Post 45

Wednesday, July 20, 2005 - 2:56pmSanction this postReply
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Mark,

Bonobos are our closest primate cousins, and they have same-sex sexual relations about as much as they have opposite-sex sexual relations. Do a net search on them.

Jordan




Post 46

Wednesday, July 20, 2005 - 3:59pmSanction this postReply
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Perhaps Iíve missed something, but I fail to see how the argument of whether or not homosexuality is natural/nurtural/genetic works against equal rights for gay couples. As Ashley F. stated earlier, we humans have created and take part in a host of things that are not natural. These things donít necessarily negate our humanity, or make some people less worthy of equal rights than others.

 

I donít know how Mark H. came to the conclusion that homosexuals are tormented. We let tormented straight people get married. We let criminals, child abusers/molesters, rapists, drug abusers, psychotics, religious fanatics, handicaps, etc., enjoy the benefits of marriage as long as they marry a person of the opposite sex.

 

If a fully sentient, balanced, human being chooses to marry someone of the same sex because this makes them happy, and this does not infringe on anyone elseís rights, why is there even a question about this? Itís only the business of the two people entering into the contract.




Post 47

Wednesday, July 20, 2005 - 4:52pmSanction this postReply
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The problem, M. Banker, is when that contract becomes a violation of rights to those who choose not to enter/are currently not involved in said contract. Tax breaks because you happen to be governmentally "married" is wrong, just as tax breaks for businesses with X number of promised employees is wrong.

Gay marriage is not about equal rights, it's about equal theft.



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Post 48

Wednesday, July 20, 2005 - 5:05pmSanction this postReply
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Letís all of us hetero males do an exercise, (especially Bidinotto. I know heís at least as sick as I am.) Letís imagine the image of Ashley standing in an air-conditioned cabana by a salt-water pool wearing a strap-on dildo. She and her friends are cool with us taking a seat in the corner, with our scotch; we just have to promise to keep our filthy mouths shut.

Iím going to sit down. I assume about 90% of you are still with me. Is this natural? (No, itís fucking divine, thatís why were sitting here!) I have no rational explanation. The best I can muster is that I will gain some psychological visibility by seeing, across the room, in Bidinottoís eyes, precisely what pained exaltation looks like.

Now for the politics. Of course gay marriage should be honored. To argue against it that it means more welfare or more Ďgovít in the marriage businessí is absurd. Getting the govít out will take generations, or at least you will admit weíre nowhere near close? Gay marriage is close.

If blacks were still not allowed welfare, govít student loans, FHA mortgages, etc. would you seriously be for denying letting them in on these? Because it would mean more tax-theft? You would deny them these things until the day that these things are gone? Thatís how you propose we achieve equal treatment? Atrocious.

Jon



Post 49

Wednesday, July 20, 2005 - 5:31pmSanction this postReply
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Yes, Jon, on principle, I would disallow the enlargement of a group of people who use the government to steal from others. Period, even if you want to play the race card, stating that blacks aren't allowed to do theft action X is a good argument to get rid of theft action X, not allow additional individuals to loot.

It will take even longer to get government out of marriage if more people are added to its interest group. That would mean a larger constituency than before to overcome the theft of governmental marriage.



Post 50

Wednesday, July 20, 2005 - 5:41pmSanction this postReply
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And slavery of blacks is a good argument for slavery of whites. Weíll work it all out once slavery is abolished.



Post 51

Wednesday, July 20, 2005 - 5:59pmSanction this postReply
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It occurs to me that some might not follow my analogy.

Steven wants to wrong a group, gays, by denying them human treatment vis-ŗ-vis marriage in furtherance of a supposedly greater good: Getting the government out of the Ďmarriage business.í

I suggest an analogy: Itís 1859. Letís deny whites human treatment vis-ŗ-vis freedom in hope that the resulting suffering will convince those whites to finally oppose slavery.

Not the most straight-away analogy, sorry.

My point being that wronging a group because this will make easier getting rid of the ďbiggerĒ wrong, is not right.

Jon



Post 52

Wednesday, July 20, 2005 - 6:27pmSanction this postReply
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"Gay marriage is not about equal rights, it's about equal theft."

I am still a bit confused about how a tax break for one person/company/group violates the rights of someone else. Do I not know enough about taxes? How does my tax liability have anything to do with anyone else?

Please respond to this as I am genuinely unsure, not just trying to wind you up.

But secondly, surely you don't honestly believe that anyone gets married for the tax benefits? Much less homos. In two-income no kid households, I don't even know that filing jointly makes any sense. What tax benefits are you talking about specifically, because I am under the impression that this is sort of a myth in the first place (that gays want to get married to get all sorts of tax benefits).



Post 53

Wednesday, July 20, 2005 - 6:35pmSanction this postReply
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"Letís all of us hetero males do an exercise..."

Nice one. We'll have to get that on the agenda for the next SOLOC. It can go right after the Mr. SOLOverse competition.

"It occurs to me that some might not follow my analogy."

Jon, I followed your analogy. Earlier as I was reading these posts I was trying to think of analogies for myself to see if I could find another perspective that would make me feel any differently. I was thinking: what if tomorrow feminists took over the schools, and all the public schools closed the doors to male students to try and stop the cycle of male dominance and oppression. Would you guys be outraged? Or wouldja say "Rock on, the state shouldn't be educating kids in the first place; we're halfway there now."





Post 54

Wednesday, July 20, 2005 - 6:50pmSanction this postReply
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I am so happy we agree on all this. Oh my god, holy shit, I am so happy right now.



Post 55

Wednesday, July 20, 2005 - 7:02pmSanction this postReply
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Ashley, your description of sexual attraction is poignant and alluring, whatever its nature.
Jordan, I wouldn't know a bonobol from a cannibal, but I doubt the example that tries to prove that bonobol girls frequently prefer other bonobol girls over dejected bonobol guys proves much of anything.
John, you seem to excell in the art of jumping to unwarranted conclusions. What did I post that argues against respecting the natural right of gays to do anything that's peaceful?




Post 56

Wednesday, July 20, 2005 - 7:10pmSanction this postReply
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John, you seem to excell in the art of jumping to unwarranted conclusions.

Hello pot, have you met the kettle?

Sarah



Post 57

Wednesday, July 20, 2005 - 8:09pmSanction this postReply
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I agree that the government has no business involving itself in the relationships of individuals, but if we the people must tolerate government recognition of marriage, then it behooves us to force the government to treat gay, bisexual, and transgender individuals no differently from straight individuals. As far as I'm concerned, a marriage is nothing more than a commitment to a permanent relationship between lovers. By that standard, Adam and Steve next door, who've been together twenty years, is as much a married couple as my wife and me.

Either gay marriage, or no marriage at all. We should tolerate no other position from the government.



Post 58

Wednesday, July 20, 2005 - 8:25pmSanction this postReply
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Steven Druckenmiller - Post 35 - I have no problem in limiting the government to enforcing civil union contracts, rather than issuing them.  That sounds fine to me.  Let's reduce the role of government wherever it is reasonable to do so.

Jon and Ashley - Thanks for doing a great job in arguing against Steven Druckenmiller's Post 35 repeat of the argument against establishing a new tax benefit group.  The problem is to get the governments to reduce taxes to a minimum and then to levy them evenly and without discrimination.  It is a tough problem, but that does not justify keeping any 2 consenting adults from enjoying the many benefits that come with a close partnership recognized by contract, such as a civil union.




Post 59

Thursday, July 21, 2005 - 2:30amSanction this postReply
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Mark Humphrey,

If it eventually is proven that homosexuality is an expression of one's physiology, rather than a sort of emotional problem, I will gladly eat my words.
Isn't psychology merely physiology of the brain?

I think that homosexuality is a normal human response to special adverse and abnormal circumstances.
Normal is, by definition, anything average, it does not include notions of right or wrong, good or bad. Einstein had abnormal cognitive abilities. But as homosexuality is a common thing, it is by definition, normal. If you mean to imply that we deny our natural human responses because we live in a society that has evolved, that we try to match the surviving pieces of hunt or run psychology of 5000 years ago, to a society based on new criterion, then clearly it is proven wrong by the fact that many animals, still having their primitive reactions, engage in homosexual activity. If you think it contradicting our 'need' to propagate, then anyone choosing not to have children, should be denied marriage.

But if it is true, why do homosexual men typically (not universally) have sexual relationships with a large number of men?
I guess for the same reason that many men would choose to have sexual relations with many women and vice versa - in my younger days i thought it more cool than abnormal to hook many females, it helped me build self-esteem. Though i would imagine that anyone; man, woman, gay or straight constantly reminded that they are abnormal, reacting on emotional problems, could develop an enhanced need for acceptance.

If we, proven wrong by statistics, say that homosexuality is abnormal, and on those grounds deem it wrong for gay people to get married... what types of abnormal people, what types of minorities, should we then deem unfit for legally sanctioned marriage... disabled people, ventriloquists, presidents, objectivists...?

Magna Carta of 1215 article 40; "To no one will we sell, to no one will we refuse or delay, right or justice." This has been translated and used in many forms, the US Bill of Rights has its "No person shall be ... deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law." the problem arises when the law itself is used to deprive certain individuals certain liberties.

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) article 7: "All are equal before the law and are entitled without any discrimination to equal protection of the law. All are entitled to equal protection against any discrimination in violation of this Declaration and against any incitement to such discrimination." article 16: "Men and women of full age, without any limitation due to race, nationality or religion, have the right to marry and to found a family. They are entitled to equal rights as to marriage, during marriage and at its dissolution.
2. Marriage shall be entered into only with the free and full consent of the intending spouses.
3. The family is the natural and fundamental group unit of society and is entitled to protection by society and the State. "

I don't find your post offending towards gay people, i see it as an honest, non-aggressive, intolerant response.

(Edited by SÝren Olin
on 7/21, 3:59am)




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