Homosexuality Part I

(In the interest of full disclosure, your not so humble columnist is a heterosexual man and therefore is less than qualified to write on this subject, but I am the only one here, so somebody has to do it.)

In researching for these columns, I came across a staggering array of statistics, many at odds with one another. In just merely looking for a base number of the percentage of homosexuals within the population, I found a range of two percent to six percent, with claims that from twenty to forty-five percent of people have had homosexual experiences. Recent polling in the United States (2004 and 2008) indicates a gay population of about four percent.

It is no wonder that the subject has so many varying points of view if researchers cannot even agree on how many people are actually homosexual.

Numbers aside, homosexuality has had a varied history, as well. Until 1973, the American Psychiatric Association classified homosexuality as a disorder. In Ancient Rome, however, all the emperors, save one, took male lovers.  In some societies, male relationships with adolescent youths were encouraged and even celebrated. Artwork, throughout history, depicts both gays and lesbians in a positive light. Even in the Middle East, Persians had “wine boys” serve them in the taverns of the day.

So, how is a homosexual “born?”

Well, even that question is debated among professionals.

While the general consensus among most is that homosexuals are “born that way,” the American Academy of Pediatrics in 2004 stated:

“Sexual orientation probably is not determined by any one factor but by a combination of genetic, hormonal, and environmental influences.”

Interesting. What “environmental influences” would cause someone to “choose” or “become” gay?

(Since I am trying to treat a serious subject with respect, I will refrain from any jokes about Tele Tubbies, Mr. Roger’s Neighborhood or Bert and Ernie.)

The Religious Right and even some moderates and liberals claim that homosexuality is a choice. There are varying reasons behind their claims, but in my view, those claims are just a feeble attempt at justifying that last acceptable form of bigotry.


(Part II of III tomorrow.)

William Stephenson Clark


Filed under GLBT Rights

7 responses to “Homosexuality Part I

  1. tosmarttobegop

    Oh my favorite topic sex, actual it is one aspect of the interesting subject of human beings. My favorite topping is chocolate in case anyone is interested.
    Humans are one of the most sexual species, one among a few that engages in sexual activity for other then having babies.

    There are varying degrees of sex and its activity that can be confused ending up being related to Homosexuality. Some are not homosexual rather they are sexual and simple do not limit to someone of the opposite sex. “If you can’t be with the one you love… love the one you are with.

    The Greeks and Romans for that matter often thought of it as a form of birth control.
    You had fun with the boys and had sex with the wife.
    This kept the possibility of some unwanted or unfit heir coming along and demanding their birth right. You were assured it is the safest form of sex that would not bring pregnancy.

    I make a difference between what is called Bi-sexual and homosexual.
    I have never had a extended discussion with a bi male but have with bi females.
    It is the differences between how man have sex and women have sex that is the deciding factor as to who they want to have sex with. Women are more attentive and deliberate in how they have sex. Men are often down and dirty get to it in their fashion.

    I also make a difference between those who just have had a homosexual experience and true homosexually. Many a boy has had a homosexual experience but it was not because they wanted to have sex with another boy.

    It is as simply as this, if 13 y.o. Johnny asks his parents if 13 y.o. Mary down the street can sleep over with them alone in the bedroom? It is no way!
    But if the same 13 y.o. asks if 13 y.o. Jimmy down the street can sleep over it is OK.

    I have been told it is also the case with girls, in fact one woman told me if a woman said she has never kissed another girl she is lying. But then I do not think there are such absolutes.

    Not ever boy has had sexual experience with another boy or every girl has kissed another girl. But it does not mean they have homosexual tendencies if they have.

    Like our author, I have only a glancing knowledge for the most part of homosexually.
    Knowing only what I have asked or been told, but one thing I am sure of it is not a choice.
    With the social stigma who would choose it over being accepted as “normal”.

    To say it is a choice is to also say that heterosexually is a choice.
    Both being something more deep then simply the physical senses.

  2. For me it all comes down to treating every human with dignity.

    I find myself sympathetic to everyone except those with mean spirits. Maybe that’s a cover for their own hurts but I’m not a person likely to hang in with a stranger and uncover what they’ve so carefully covered with meanness. My psyche is too important and mean-spiritedness seems to be highly contagious, infecting and then feeding off others.

  3. indypendent

    There is a big difference between the religious folks and the Religious Right – in my opinion.

    The Religious Right is a group of people who have to prove they are better than everyone else. They have the one true god. They have eternal life in Heaven. They have the superior morals. And the list goes on.

    So why wouldn’t they hate homosexuality? It is a way for the Religous Right leaders to keep their minions in line. You know that line – the line that keeps plopping their money into that preacher’s pockets.

    As for the religious folks – these are people who may not like homosexuality but they would never dream of discriminating against a homosexual. There are religious folks who live by the Golden Rule – live and let live.

    When I think back to my childhood, there were homosexuals in my neighborhood but nobody gave them any grief. They were good neighbors, good people and even went to church. In fact, these folks were living better lives than most of the so-called church people.

    When the so-called Religious Right (the Moral Majority back in the Reagan years) got into politics was this issue of homosexuality and gay marriage brought out into the national spotlight.

    And to further the nastiness, Republicans have used this as a wedge issue to keep their minions in line to vote for every ‘R’ on the ballot.

  4. indypendent

    I agree with fnord that it is a matter of treating every human with dignity.

    What is so maddening to me is when a Religious Right person will tell me they do not hate the person, they hate the sin of homosexuality.

    That is usually when I respond – I don’t hate you as a person, I hate the sin of lying.

  5. Reid Makes a Promise to Dan Choi for Gay Rights

    Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid often raises the ire of liberal activists because of the slow pace of legislating in the Senate.

    He acknowledged as much today at Netroots Nation, the largest gathering of liberal bloggers and activists of the year: “I know there are times, I’m told, that I get on your nerves,” he said, eliciting laughter. “I’m here to tell you, you get on my nerves.”

    Reid said, however, that he and the left need each other. And he promised to keep up his end of the bargain with two moves: a commitment to reforming the filibuster, and a moving pledge – made personally to Lt. Dan Choi – to repeal the military’s “don’t ask, don’t tell” law.

    Choi this week was discharged from the military for being openly gay. Since coming out, the Iraq war veteran has been an outspoken advocate for repealing don’t ask, don’t tell.

    Before Reid began to answer questions from the conference audience today, the discussion moderator handed him Choi’s West Point ring as a gift. Reid expressed his gratitude but said he could not accept the gift.

    “He earned his ring,” Reid said. “I’m going to give it back to him.”

    Choi joined Reid on stage and gave the majority leader a hug. Audience members shouted at Reid to keep the ring until “don’t ask, don’t tell” is repealed.

    “When the bill’s signed, I’ll keep it safely and then give it back to him,” he said.

    more —

    • indypendent

      I can understand the frustration with Obama and Democrats for not pushing harder on the repeal of DADT.

      But I always come back to this one point – what other political party is even talking about this repeal being necessary?

      If we simply throw up our hands at the slowness of getting this ridiculous DADT repealed, are we really willing to throw the baby out with the bath water?

      Because if Republicans get back into power – the repeal of DADT will immediately be put on the ‘hell no way, no how shelf’ and do we really want that?

      So even if the reality of Obama not jumping in there and immediately repealing DADT is offensive, we really don’t have any other game in town.

      And perhaps Lt Dan Choi realizes this and this is why he met with Reid on that stage – to push for equality of homosexuals in whatever place that is at least willing to listen?

      I know, it is little comfort to people who want action taken now.

  6. tosmarttobegop

    Paul wrote the letters to the Corinthians, he did not start the letters out to whom it may concern or to the current occupant. He wrote them to the people of the faith and it was instructions as to what to do and what not to do.

    And again Leviticus is written to people of the faith and not to who ever happens to dig them out of the trash. That is something that those who are using the Bible to justify and rectify their detestations.
    Have forgotten or simply over look if the roles were reversed and it was them that was being subjected to someone else’s. Say the Hindus or the Buddhists were saying that the Christians had to live by their religious beliefs it would not be so plain to them.

    I talked to my friend who is a fundamentalist about how it seem that the faith is changing into something that is not recognizable. He agreed and said they seem to be taking God out of it other then to use him as a whopping stick to bash other’s heads.

    They are modern day Pharisees, using religious belief to put others down but not to better them selves and be better in Christ.

    I just read an e-mail from the Christian Pharisees of Kansas which is what their groups should change their name to. Christians are to boycott Home depot, Because they participated in the Gay Pride paraded and extend benefits to same sex partners. Even offered under their insurance to pay part of a sex change operation.

    Now how much of that is true I have no idea, they often jump at every knock in the dark in the name of God.