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July 19th, 2012
Are You Sure That Isn’t Demon Rum Talking?
by Bruce |
So Towleroad posts the following…
Citing their Christian faith, Mike and Mari Fuller, owners of the Waha Bar & Grill in Idaho, say they will no longer sell Pepsi or MillerCoors beer because of those companies’ ties to the National Gay and Lesbian Chamber of Commerce.
Others have pointed out the list of products they still sell that also support gay equality. But the first thing that struck my inner Baptist boy about this story was…er…wait…this is a bar for goodness sakes.
The home I grew up in had no car, and when I was very young we took the bus downtown to go shopping and then walked my little legs off. I remember, and I am not kidding and not exaggerating, how my Baptist grandmother would point to the bars along our way and say “The devil lives there!”
Eventually I became a teenager and the instant some high school friends of mine gave me my first taste of illegal (for my age) rum and Coke I decided the devil might not be so bad after all. I’m a middle-aged gay man now with a taste for sugary cordials and fine tequilas. But I still count that distrust of the pleasures of drink as one of the pluses of the religious training I got way back when. It’s that little bird perched on my shoulder whenever I am miserable and depressed, telling me that there is no path to happiness in a bottle. I’d Like A Drink is fine. I Need A Drink is…ooooohhh…then you don’t get one Bruce Albert Garrett…
Unlike a reflexive distrust of sex and sexuality, a reflexive distrust of alcohol actually does have something to be said for it. Alcoholism, unlike homosexuality, really does cause health and social problems. And there is a pretty well known period in the history of this country of massive Christian opposition to the making and selling of alcohol on those grounds. So…listen…Mike, Mari…I appreciate your right to carry whatever products you choose, for whatever reason you want. But…seriously…I don’t think the Christian Women’s Temperance Union would approve of your line of work. Don’t you know how destructive alcohol is to the family and society?
July 17th, 2012
On My Honor, I Will Do My Best, To Hate The Stranger…
by Bruce |
Bill Browning argues that there was no secret committee…that it was just a hastily assembled pile of bullshit they threw together because they were getting pressure from some pretty big sources to rethink their cheapshit prejudices.
I don’t believe them. Their story has too many holes in it to be remotely believable. This is a spin put in place to cover their ass at the recent blowback they’ve been getting as opinions change on gays and lesbians. There’s more holes in their statements than a block of Swiss cheese.
I’m inclined to agree…this was the first thing that crossed my mind this afternoon when I saw the stories about this go by in the news stream. But it makes no difference. You had to know this organization, whatever noble work it initially set itself out to do, had become corrupted by hate long ago when they started in earnest kicking good kids out of their ranks when they dared to be honest about themselves. Prejudice and morality do not co-exist within the same heart. Whether or not the BSA leadership is lying through its teeth about this secret committee is beside the point. They are lying to every kid they take into their ranks now, and to their parents, and to their country.
I would like to point out since it seems to be getting lost in the conversation here that it’s not just gay kids that the BSA deems unworthy but also atheist kids. Basically what BSA is pushing is a mindset that gay kids and non believing kids cannot aspire to the moral character of a boy scout. It’s a mindset they’re determined to keep pushing on kids, both straight and gay, believing and non-believing. Picture a Cub Scout happy to belong to his troop, working hard for his badges, winning the approval of his parents and troop leaders. Picture that kid as a teenage Scout, at the threshold of adulthood, coming to terms with his sexual orientation. He’s gay, he knows it, he’s not sure what it means for him and the adult life ahead of him but he’s at the point now where he knows he is gay. And because a Scout is brave and a Scout is trustworthy and a Scout is honest he comes out to those he trusts most. And for his trouble he’s kicked out of the organization that taught him the moral values he now holds. What’s the message here? The message is obvious: you are not worthy to wear this uniform, because you are a homosexual. And homosexuals Are Not And Can Never Be trustworthy, loyal, helpful, friendly, courteous, kind, obedient, cheerful, thrifty, brave, clean and reverent.
Forget all the values we have taught you. You have failed them all. You are not worthy to bear them in your heart. That’s an absolutely disgusting attack on the self worth of children, but also on American society. It is enforcing, under the guise of teaching important moral values, nothing more noble then cheap bar stool prejudices, teaching fear and loathing of neighbor against neighbor, and starting it young. You’ve got to be carefully taught…
Prejudice and morality do not co-exist within the same heart. One will eventually drive out the other. As long as Scouting teaches kids to distrust if not hate each other outright, whatever other moral values they claim to teach are rendered moot in the process. You cannot teach both moral character and prejudice at the same time.
June 27th, 2012
Mark Regnerus: Paul Cameron, But With An Actual University Job
by Bruce |
[Cross-posted over at Truth Wins Out…]
There’s a good Huffington Post article making the rounds now, by another professor at the University of Texas…this one an actual professor of sociology as opposed to “associate professor”. Money-quote here:
Had Regnerus walked down the hall and knocked on my door, I would have been happy to explain that stress and instability harm children in any family context. Love and support help children to thrive and succeed. Pseudo-science that demonizes gay and lesbian families contributes to stress, and is not good for children.
Just so. Robert George is probably having a good laugh right now at the fast one he’s just pulled, of kicking the kids of gay parents in the teeth even as his and other homophobes’ concern for their welfare is taken for granted by the corporate news media.
Reading this something that was nagging at me finally clicked. Mark Regnerus is basically Paul Cameron, but with a job at an actual University. Bear in mind, Cameron’s evil genius is in his ability to deftly gerrymander his data while making it seem like his conclusions are purely and honestly arrived at. His original claim, the zombie lie that never dies, that gay men have vastly shorter lifespans, is the classic case in point. When you look more closely, you see that all Cameron did was select a data set that guaranteed he’d get the outcome he wanted. But you have to really look at what he did to see that was what he was doing, and there of course, is the rub.
Eventually intelligent people of good will would see though it and dismiss it as junk science, but people of good will were never his audience. In the end what he was doing, was giving the kook pews something to wave around as proof that persecuting homosexuals is just good public policy and no, they’re not just saying that because they’re a bunch of knuckle dragging bigots.
Stripped away from all its formal academic pretenses, what you see is Regnerus is doing what Paul Cameron has always done: deftly select just the data that will give him the answer he wanted in the first place, in such a way as to appear to the casual observer that he’s not deliberately biasing the data. This is the essential Paul Cameron technique. Mark Regnerus is just another Paul Cameron, but with a University office. Maybe Paul should send him a diploma from ISIS. Grant him a PhD. This was as good a thesis as anything Paul himself could have produced.
June 23rd, 2012
And Speaking Of The Long History Of Heterosexual Marriage…
by Bruce |
This started coming across the wire the other day and I just have to repost it here. Alas, I’m suspecting many of my fellow Americans won’t even get it…
Yes, yes…I can hear it already. King Henry didn’t redefine marriage, it was still one man and one women. And the next woman. And the next. And the next. And the next. And the next.
May 21st, 2012
The Normalization Of Normality
by Bruce |
There is nothing more ordinary then human diversity. Some of us are blue eyed, some brown, some green. Some of us have blond hair, some black. Skin color, height, weight, proportion of leg to torso…ask anyone who observes and draws or photographs the human form how identical we are to one another. Some of us are left handed, some right. There are males, females, and also transgendered individuals. There are mathematicians, mechanics, chefs, doctors, painters, musicians, actors, soldiers, firefighters, teachers. There are people who just seem to light up a room whenever they walk into it no matter the gloom that was there before, and people who bring their own little grey cloud with them wherever they go. It is normal to be different. And very young children, generally, accept this in each other. As the song goes, You’ve Got To Be Carefully Taught.
For decades now the homophobes have warned about the “normalization” of homosexuality. Dire consequences would follow. Very dire consequences. What everyone is beginning to see now, finally, is that when the homophobic static is gone, normalcy returns. Here in Maryland, the Baltimore Sun today has an article about how the end of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell is playing in at the Naval Academy in Annapolis. The answer seems to be a catastrophic decent of society into pure unadulterated normalcy.
Gay cadets at the U.S. Military Academy and the Coast Guard Academy are forming clubs. Gay alumni at the Air Force Academy hosted their first football tailgate last fall, and gay alumni at the Air Force Academy and West Point held their annual dinners on campus for the first time.
It’s not all roses of course. Some worry about the effect coming out will have on their careers once they leave the academy. Others insist it will have little to no impact. But the effect here in Maryland, as elsewhere, of lifting the outcast status on gay people, that dangerous alien other label, has been mostly…business as usual. Or rather, business more usual then it previously could be when people had to be afraid. The sense you get is of peace descending, finally, after a long and brutal battle. We are all neighbors once more. Now that the fires of prejudice and hate are subsiding a sense of community becomes possible once again. Normalcy returns.
This recently, from a Canadian Evangelical…
Most of us evangelicals in Canada, regardless of personal beliefs about homosexuality, can admit that since same-sex marriage has been legalised in Canada, our society has not gone to hell in a hand basket, nor has traditional marriage, or our families been under attack. Scare tactics and wild-eyed fear-based rhetoric rarely turns out to be true. In actual practice, our society has become “live and let live” which is actually a rather tolerant and comfortable place to be.
Behold the dire consequence. A reader of Andrew Sullivan’s blog, responding to a question put to Maggie Gallagher about the harm to individuals and society where same-sex marriage has been legalized, noted that her reply was basically worry about the status of homophobes like herself…
Essentially, Maggie Gallagher is concerned about the affect of same-sex marriage on people like Maggie Gallagher. She cites no data or statistics or study which shows how any heterosexual marriages or children in families with same-sex parents have been damaged. She makes no claim that any such damages has occurred, only that people like her have been made social pariahs instead of the gay people who ought to be the pariahs. I’m sure there’s a social science term that describes what she is doing, but I guess I just find the complaint that “you’re making other people not like me” to be a rather petty and self-absorbed. Where, I wonder, is her concern about the affect on people other than Maggie Gallagher?
There’s the problem. To fear and loath your neighbor over some trivial difference just isn’t normal. To incite those fears and loathings in others is damaging to community and nation. Once the homophobic static is gone everyone just gets along with each other. The horrible outcome of the normalization of homosexuality is world where we are all neighbors once again and we just get on with life and things get back to…normal. The scapegoat, the hated other, no longer hate themselves, and are no longer hated. We are neighbors once again, each of us just going on about our business. And the only thing that warning anyone who will listen about the homosexual menace teaches them is what an creep you are.
May 19th, 2012
Sometimes The Pat Answer Is The Right One After All
by Bruce |
The longer I am in this debate, the more something emerges. Most people don’t really care much about gays. The subject doesn’t come up; and most adjusted straight men do not feel passionately on the subject one way or the other. And so you notice patterns. You find that most of the really impassioned anti-gay activists are just as motivated by personal passion – whether as an early victim of sex abuse (Paul Cameron), or as the father of a gay son (Charles Socarides), or as a single mother abandoned by her boyfriend (Maggie Gallagher), or someone fighting to restrain their own gay feelings (Ted Haggard, Larry Craig) – as pro-gay activists are.
He’s commenting on the story that the father of anti-gay junk science Paul (homosexuals live an average of 36 years) Cameron acknowledged finally his homosexual urges, saying that he’d been sexually abused as a child. You would watch that creep on various TV interviews and your gaydar would go off like a fire alarm. The only thing that surprises me here is he finally admitted it. Yeah, yeah…he claims he’s overcome his urges. Spends every waking hour of every day obsessing about the homosexual menace, but he’s overcome those homosexual urges. I’m going to overcome my chocolate chip cookie urges by spending nearly every waking hour thinking about chocolate chip cookies.
There was a time I understood what Sullivan is saying there to be occasionally true, but just too pat to rely on as an explanation for the extremely passionate homophobes. Now…not so much. Decades of seeing it over and over and over…it’s the other shoe that almost always drops eventually. Oh, they have a gay child…oh, they had a gay spouse…oh, they were abused as kids…oh, they’re gay…
But make no mistake, you also see the thoroughly heterosexual anti-gay crusader, who cheats on a spouse, has their own history of sexually abusing other people, or otherwise fails morally in some miserable spectacular way, and needs a scapegoat. And that’s where we come in. Newt Gingrich. Rush Limbaugh. They’re not all dealing with their own private confictedness about homosexuality, but they’re all nursing a private moral failure they need a scapegoat to dump it on.
May 14th, 2012
Because Persecuting Homosexuals Is The Only Reason I Have For Living
by Bruce |
Via Right Wing Watch…
Jim Garlow was on Daystar TV’s “Celebration” program to promote his recent book “Miracles Are For Real,” but before the discussion about his book began, Garlow and hosts Marcus and Joni Lamb spent several minutes talking about President Obama’s statement last week in support of marriage equality.
Garlow weighed in, declaring that religious liberty and “the radical homosexual agenda” were on course for a head-on collision in America because “they cannot both exist in the same nation at the same time.”
Because persecuting homosexuals is a sacrament more vital to one’s own salvation then being baptized. If homosexuals can live their lives in peace we might as well close the church doors and wait for the rapture because salvation just isn’t possible anymore.
Oh, but he’s not through yet…
Garlow warned that advances in marriage equality will eventually force the Christian church underground because the gay agenda is all about “coercion, and crushing, and taking away our liberties and freedoms.” But nonetheless, Garlow said, Christians must be willing to stand up and speak out in opposition even though “we are coming into an era where it could cost us everything, including our lives”
Whereas homosexuals don’t have lives. And if they do our relentless incitement of religious passions toward them certainly isn’t costing any of them theirs.
May 9th, 2012
by Bruce |
I can appreciate that some people have deeply held religious beliefs. What I don’t appreciate is some people turning my hopes and dreams of love into their stepping stones to heaven. I can appreciate that some people have had a hard life. But only a runt uses that as an excuse to inflict pain on others. I can appreciate how it is to feel your peace and security threatened by forces you don’t understand. That has never once made me want to become that force against others. I have always wished you peace. You will need to let me have mine too though, because that’s just the way peace works.
May 8th, 2012
Planning A Cross-Country Road Trip Is So Much Easier For A Gay Guy When He’s Single
by Bruce |
The headline I was expecting…came as expected.
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — North Carolina voters approved a constitutional amendment on Tuesday defining marriage solely as a union between a man and a woman, making it the 30th state to adopt such a ban.
Thirty states. Thirty states. Oh…and it’s more then simply a ban on same-sex marriage. That amendment was an all out attack on same-sex couples having any legal rights that heterosexuals are bound to respect.
I have reflected often on the fact that the only reason I feel free to explore my country, take the long cross-country drives I love, is that I am single. The saving grace of it is that the side of my family that approves of constitutionally kicking their gay neighbors in the teeth all live in states I couldn’t visit anyway were I happily coupled. Should that day ever come, it will save me a lot of excuse making. Tell you what…you come visit us. We’d love to have you over! And your marriages are valid here so don’t worry.
April 30th, 2012
There Is No Gender Pay Discrimination And Anyway Why Aren’t You In The Kitchen Woman??
by Bruce |
This from Steve Benen on the Rachel Maddow blog…
If you didn’t catch “Meet the Press” yesterday, you missed a lively conversation about, among other things, women’s votes in 2012 and the policy controversies that have put women’s issues at the forefront of the political landscape.
As you’ll see in this clip, around the 5:20 mark, Rachel noted the pay disparity between men and women in this country, which prompted some unexpected pushback (and incessant interruptions) from Republican strategist Alex Castellanos.
Unexpected? Like the incessant interruptions? Golly it’s almost as if they wanted to just shut you up woman…
The angle to this to keep in mind is that the Republicans on the panel, Castellanos and Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-Wash.), simply reject the available facts on the wage gap. Despite ample evidence that shows women make less than men for the same work, Castellanos chooses to believe his own version of reality in which that’s not the case.
There’s simply no shared foundation of reality, which in turn shapes the policy debate in unproductive ways. The left sees gender-based pay disparity and looks for mechanisms to address the problem; the right rejects the existence of the disparity and sees no use for the solutions because, to them, there is no problem.
If I may…no. Just…no. You’re giving the right way too much credit for making a good faith argument here.
The problem isn’t that they don’t think gender pay disparity exists. They know damn well it exists. They don’t think that’s a problem. It is instead but a simple The Way God And Nature Intended Things To Be truth. Women just don’t belong in the workplace, let alone the family planning clinic. Giving them equal pay diminishes the rightful status of men and encourages women to abandon their role as child bearers and housekeepers. That said, the right also knows that in this day and age, at least here in the decadent west if not in many areas of the righteous middle east, people are generally sickened by caveman attitudes toward women. This is part of what they see as the decline of civilization. It’s getting so men can’t drag their women around by the hair anymore! So rather then give people their honest reasons why discrimination against women is a good thing they’re spreading a line of propaganda to the effect that there is no discrimination.
Wage discrimination? No such thing! So nothing to see here people….move along…move along…
Now can we get back to preventing insurance from paying for contraception…?
The Gutter Takes Offense
by Bruce |
They’re saying Dan Savage has stirred up a hornet’s nest…
Dan Savage Speech Controversy: ‘It Gets Better’ Creator Offends Christian Students
Dan Savage offended some Christian teens when he told them “We can learn to ignore the bull—t in the Bible about gay people.”
After many students walked out of the speech, one of whom appeared to be crying, Savage said, “It’s funny, as someone who’s on the receiving end of beatings that are justified by the bible, how pansy-assed some people react when you push back.”
Right on cue the usual suspects wing up the noise machine…
Fox News reports that Savage’s comments upset the executive director of GOProud, a gay conservative group.
“Dan Savage should apologize for his comments and should apologize to the high school students in attendance whom he called ‘pansy-asses,’” Jimmy LaSalvia told Fox. “It is ironic that someone whose claim to fame is fighting bullying would resort to bullying tactics in attacking high school students who were offended by his outrageous remarks.”
There is so much to unpack here. Firstly, the headline. This is that right wing propaganda everyone has bought into over the years, that the only authentic Christians are the right wing bigots and everyone else is just faking it. How many of the kids who stayed to hear what Savage had to say, regardless of what they thought of it, also identified as Christian? We don’t get that information in any of the mainstream news stories I’ve seen on this. No, no…it was Christians, capital ‘C’ who walked out and who Savage tossed a going away insult at. Those were the only Christians in that auditorium that day.
Secondly, Savage didn’t stir up anything…that bubbling open sewer that calls itself the moral majority needs no stirring, it is always on the boil. This incident wouldn’t look more like the usual case of right wing manufactured outrage if those kids were wearing t-shirts that said “We Are Here To Take Offense At Anything You Have To Say”. I am expected to believe that none of the kids in that group who walked out knew who Dan Savage was or what his positions were on sex, gay sex, and the bible am I? Right. Pull the other one.
Suddenly it’s We’re Not The Bullies, Dan Savage Is The Bully, Because He Insulted Us!!! Yes. Yes he did. And a well earned insult it was too. In the Twitter fury that followed, LOLGOP Tweeted: “I’ve not yet met one conservative Christian who is considering suicide because of bullying as thousands of LGBT youth do every day.” Just so. It is grotesque to watch the right wing noise machine compare Dan Savage’s crack about the kids walking out of his talk to what gay kids deal with every day of their lives, usually at the hands of kids like the ones who walked out. This from The Christian Post:
The 17-year-old California student, whose name was not given, told CitizenLink’s Karla Dial that Savage said people using the Bible to justify their views on homosexuality being a sin often cite Leviticus and Romans in saying that “being gay is wrong.”
“Right after that, he said we can ignore all the ‘B.S.’ in the Bible,” the student told CitizenLink, which is affiliated with faith-based organization Focus on the Family.
The student said she suddenly reacted by blurting out “That’s bull!” before storming out of the auditorium along with several other students. Savage reportedly called the students pansies upon noticing their exit.
That passage in Leviticus Savage was telling them was BS, and which the student there is righteously affirming, calls for homosexuals to be put to death, adding “Their blood is upon them”. Yes, we can throw death threats at our classmates and we’re just quoting the bible, but if you call us pansies you’re a bully.
Look at what this tells you about the mindset here. It was a rash of gay kids killing themselves at the beginning of the previous school year that prompted Savage to start his “It Get’s Better” campaign, which has never gotten anything but raspberries from the wingers. Yet now they rise in a righteous howl of anger at a small group of fundamentalist kids being called pansies. Look at it. No…really look at it. These are people who just can’t figure out why tormenting gay kids to death would be such a big deal with anyone other then it’s some kind of political posturing. The way they see it we’re posturing so they get to posture too. That gay kids are being made so miserable by the torrent of hatred being directed at them that they want to kill themselves just doesn’t seem like it should be such a big deal to the wingers.
And the reason for that is simple, obvious, and sickening. The way the right wing sees it, if the kid is gay then being treated like human garbage is what they should expect. Because they are.
Think I’m engaging in hyperbole there? When did you ever see the kind of outrage on the right toward the tormenting of gay kids that you are seeing now being directed at Dan Savage after he called the fundamentalists who walked out of his talk “pansies”. When have you ever heard a winger get upset at gay kids being called that? Cut me a break. They call gay people that and worse all the fucking time and they don’t particularly care if gay kids get called names or not. Who is fighting tooth and nail to prevent anti-bullying campaigns from specifically protecting gay kids from being bullied? The same people who are bellyaching about what Dan Savage said to a group of fundamentalists, that’s who.
How often do I have to see this before I’m allowed to call it what it is? The way the right wing sees it, the way fundamentalist bigots see it, it is only natural to treat gay kids like human garbage. Because they are. God hates them. My bible tells me so and if yours doesn’t you are not a Christian. Make no mistake, the outrage here isn’t entirely manufactured, but if you think it’s out of sympathy for the kids Savage insulted you are still not getting it. The problem isn’t that Dan Savage insulted a group of fundamentalist kids. It’s that he told them to leave their gay peers alone, using language they routinely use against their gay peers. He stood up for the gay kids. There’s where the anger is coming from.
Brutalizing gay people is one of their most cherished religious sacraments. You mess with that and you will hear the gutter scream like they are being crucified.
[Update…] “Theirs was not an act born of suffering. It was a proud show of disdain.” – Christian author John Shore.
April 8th, 2012
I Am Not Obsessed With Sex Sex Sex Sex Sex Sex Sex Sex Sex Sex Sex Sex
by Bruce |
Roy Edroso writes gleefully about the argument Andrew Sullivan and Rod Dreher are having about what it means to be a good Christian. I won’t go into detail about it here, you should just go read Roy’s post over at Alicublog. But (since I can’t post comments over there because the JS-Kit commenting engine he uses is just too goddamned cranky) I want to just take note of one thing that leaped out at me. This is Dreher speaking…
It’s interesting how so many liberal Christians accuse conservatives of being obsessed with sex, yet so much of their own writing and activism focuses on sex and sexuality, especially homosexuality.
In case you missed it, Dreher is saying right there that whenever you talk about Teh Gay you are talking about sex. Equal marriage rights for gay couples? Sex. Protecting gay people from discrimination in the workplace? Sex. Anti-bullying campaigns in the schools to protect gay kids? Sex. The horrific rise in anti-gay violence in recent years? Sex.
But no, he’s not obsessed with sex. He’s a bigot who can’t see the people for the homosexuals. He is a man who simply cannot grasp that homosexuals might have lives too, apart from their bedroom shenanigans, just like the heterosexuals do. Heterosexuals have lives, homosexuals have sex.
Remember, this is the guy who wrote an entire post off of a news story about a man surviving the home invasion massacre that killed his entire family, to vent about how shocked he was to discover “a bisexual culture” in East Texas. No he’s not obsessed with sex, he’s a bigot. His hated other is that ingrown hair, that burr under his saddle, that itch he just can’t scratch. Everything he reads that even remotely touches on gay people, even the massacre of an entire family, becomes a story about sex because that is all homosexuals amount to. He is not obsessed with sex. He’s obsessed with homosexsexsexsexsexsexsexsexsexsexsexsexuals.
April 6th, 2012
Today In News You Probably Didn’t Know Was Old News
by Bruce |
I am reminded of a colleague who reiterated, “all my homosexual patients
are quite sick”, to which I finally replied “so are all my heterosexual patients.”
-Ernest van den Haag, psychotherapist
There is nothing wrong with homosexuals. That is a simple statement of fact. Not opinion. Fact. Well researched, well established, scientific fact. And it has been well established fact for quite a very long time. If you were born in the 1960s or later, then this fact is older then you are.
Jim Burroway over at Box Turtle Bulletin writes…
Study of 100 Homosexuals: 1957. There had been a string of high profile arrests of very prominent and well-known men in Britain in the early 1950s, including Lord Montagu, his cousin, Maj. Michael Pitt-Rivers, and journalist Peter Wildeblood, all of whom had been charged and convicted of homosexual offenses. Their arrests opened the debate over whether homosexual acts between consenting adults should remain criminalized.
So in 1954 a study was convened under the leadership of Lord Wolfenden whose name would later be attached to a report recommending the complete decriminalization of homosexual relationships among consenting adults in Britain. And how did they come to this conclusion? Well they didn’t consult the bible, and they didn’t ask the prejudices of their day. They did something positively unique for that day when it came to the subject of homosexuality.
They looked for evidence.
One problem with the published research on gay men was that virtually all of it was based on clinical or criminal populations, which Curran and Parr acknowledged would not necessarily be representative of the general population of gay men. In their report, they acknowledged that their sample would likely exhibit higher rates of psychiatric problems or criminal recidivism. But when they looked into the files of these 100 men who had been referred to their practice, the authors observed:
…[I]n spite of the probability that any group of homosexuals referred to a psychiatrist might be expected to be heavily weighted in the direction of psychiatric abnormality, no fewer than 51 % were considered to be free from gross personality disorder, neurosis, or psychosis during their adult lives. Only one was certifiably defective and none certifiably insane. They included a number of important and talented individuals of high integrity, successful, efficient, and respected members of the community. Only two had been on any criminal charge other than homosexuality. Very few showed the traditional “pansy” picture of homosexuals; indeed, only 21 were noted to have at all obvious homosexual personality traits, only one of these being a paedophiliac.
So in spite of their having difficulty recruiting a completely representative sample of gay men, in spite of their sample being weighted toward mental patents and criminals, they found less mental aberration then they would have otherwise expected. In fact slightly better then half their sample showed no signs of gross mental illness at all.
Only half the patients showed significant psychiatric abnormality other than their sexual deviation, and such associated abnormalities were often slight. Moreover, many of these abnormalities were explicable as a reaction to the difficulties of being homosexual. Symptomatic homosexuality was rare.
And then it gets down to brass tacks. Is homosexuality a disease? Is this even a problem?
If homosexuality is a disease (as has often been suggested), it is in a vast number of cases monosymptomatic, non-progressive, and compatible with subjective well-being and objective efficiency. In our series, both practicing and non-practicing homosexuals were on the whole successful and valuable members of society, quite unlike the popular conception of such persons as vicious, criminal, effete, or depraved. Only one-fifth were at all obviously ” pansy,” and we found no reason to regard most of the patients as physically, intellectually, or emotionally immature (unless the basic criterion for ” immaturity” is that of being homosexual-a circular argument).
What they’re saying here is that if homosexuality is a disease then its one that has only one symptom (homosexuality) does not get worse if untreated, and does not negatively impact the overall health and well being of the individual who has it. Really…can you even call it a disease in that case?
This is similar to what American researcher Evelyn Hooker in her 1957 paper The Adjustment of the Male Overt Homosexual found: well adjusted homosexuals are clinically indistinguishable from well adjusted heterosexuals. From her Wiki entry…
She gathered two groups of men: one group would be exclusively homosexual, the other exclusively heterosexual. She contacted the Mattachine Society to find homosexual men. She had greater difficulty finding heterosexual men. She also had to use her home to conduct the interview to protect people’s anonymity…
Hooker realized that all extant science on homosexuality consisted of studies conducted on homosexual men who had already been committed to mental institutions or imprisoned for sexual offenses. Her experiment was simple and elegant and beautiful in the way all great science is simple and elegant and beautiful.
She recruited two groups of sexually active young men, one gay and one straight. From both groups she eliminated anyone who had ever been in therapy or trouble with the law. Then she gave each group a battery of what were then standard clinical psychiatric tests…
Hooker used three different psychological tests for her study: the TAT, the Make-a-Picture-Story test (MAPS test), and the Rorschach inkblot test.
She used trained professionals who were skilled in administering each of the tests. The testers did not know whether they were testing a homosexual man or a heterosexual. When she got the results back she further anonymized them so nobody looking at the tests could tell who administered the test. Standard double-blind technique.
Then she did something simple and beautiful…
After a year of work, Hooker presented a team of 3 expert evaluators with 60 unmarked psychological profiles.
…she passed the results out to the experts and asked them if they could identify the homosexuals.
No one could.
First, she contacted Bruno Klopfer, an expert on Rorschach tests to see if he would be able to identify the sexual orientation of people through their results at those tests. His ability to differentiate was no better than chance.
Then Edwin Shneidman, creator of the MAPS test, also analyzed the 60 profiles. It took him six months and he too found that both groups were highly similar in their psychological make-up.
The third expert was Dr Mortimer Mayer who was so certain he would be able to tell the two groups apart that he went through the process twice.
The three evaluators agreed that in terms of adjustment, there were no differences between the members of each group
Well adjusted homosexuals are clinically indistinguishable from well adjusted heterosexuals. This was what the Wolfsden researchers also found. And this is what everyone who objectively studies gay people has found ever since.
The experiment, which other researchers subsequently repeated, demonstrates that most self-identified homosexuals are no worse in social adjustment than the general population
When you study sick homosexuals, people who have already been committed to mental institutions or sent to jail for sex crimes, then what you find are sick homosexuals. But if you did the same thing with heterosexuals, only studying those in mental institutions or jail, you would also conclude the same about heterosexuals and nobody does that. The Christianist web site Lifesite tries to downplay Hooker’s study thusly…
Despite the fact that the purpose of the study was ostensibly to examine the possibility of mental instability in homosexuals, individuals who showed signs of mental instability were removed from the groups, which further predetermined the study’s conclusion.
But that was the point. If homosexuality was the result of mental dysfunction, as NARTH and their companions in the anti-gay industrial complex insist, then removing the individuals who showed signs of mental instability would have made not a whit of difference in the outcome. The experts Hooker contacted to evaluate her test results would have still been able to identify the homosexuals because homosexuals are mentally unstable, whether they show it outwardly or not. That the experts could not identify the homosexuals with those mentally unstable individuals removed proved decisively that the old models of homosexuality were wrong.
I am reminded of a colleague who reiterated, “all my homosexual patients are quite sick”, to which I finally replied “so are all my heterosexual patients”…
“If homosexuality is a disease (as has often been suggested), it is in a vast number of cases monosymptomatic, non-progressive, and compatible with subjective well-being and objective efficiency. In our series, both practicing and non-practicing homosexuals were on the whole successful and valuable members of society, quite unlike the popular conception of such persons as vicious, criminal, effete, or depraved”…
“The three evaluators agreed that in terms of adjustment, there were no differences between the members of each group”…
Understand this if you understand nothing else about the anti-gay industrial complex: this is knowledge that is over a half century old now. There is nothing new here. Most of the people reading this post will have been born after modern science clearly and unambiguously established this fact: there is nothing wrong with homosexuals. This has been understood in the science for over half a century.
January 28th, 2012
by Bruce |
Newt Gingrich says yesterday that same-sex marriage is paganism. Presumably unlike having a wife and a mistress.
Postcards From The Gutter
by Bruce |
Behold, the human cesspool of righteousness…
Tennessee Lawmaker Compares Homosexuality To ‘Pedophilia, Prostitution, Murder’
The so-called “license to bully” bill…would allow students to share any “religious, philosophical, or political views” that are “unpopular,” regardless of their consequences to the learning environment, and limits educators’ ability to curb such harassment.
Equality advocates lodged an email protest campaign against the measure, but were particularly surprised by the reaction of state Rep. John Ragan (R). In a long letter to one opponent of the bill, Ragan replied that gay “feelings” can be controlled by “mentally healthy adult human beings,” and concluded by stating, “Should society avoid disapproving of pedophilia, prostitution, murder, etc., because practitioners of those behaviors may commit suicide at higher rates?”
(Emphasis mine) What you have to understand about the human gutter is it has no bottom. Here is a man who wants to enable the very bullying that causes gay kids to kill themselves, saying the fact that gays are more likely to commit suicide is proof that there’s something wrong with them. Nice way to prove a point huh?
No bigot, there’s something wrong with you. Something profoundly, terribly wrong with you. Mentally healthy adult human beings? I’m laughing in your face. What do you call an adult who can abuse kids, can create a climate where kids can be easily abused, and does not see anything wrong with what they’re doing?
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