Why, Who, What, and How June 4, 2007
Why, Who, What, and How are questions that must be answered by those advocating for change. Answering these questions as a part of a meaningful, open, and honest discussion will be beneficial for everyone. A discussion that allows for more than points of emotional rhetoric, deliberate deceit and deception, threats and intimidations.
Those advocating for homosexuality, especially within the contexts of gay rights therefore should be able to support and defend their position in a meaningful, open, and honest discussion. Two words used by those advocating for gay rights are discrimination; and equality. Thus, when referring to homosexuals/gays/lesbians, Why is it discrimination and Why is about equality? Who are homosexuals/gays/ lesbians? Gay and lesbians are best seen as political sexual identities. What does it mean to be a homosexual/gay/lesbian? It is to self-identify by same-sex erotic attractions and behaviors. How does one become a homosexual/gay/lesbian? There are multiple pathways that lead one to pursuing homosexuality, homosexual behavior, likewise there are multiple pathways to overcoming homosexuality, homosexual behavior. The parameters of the discussion are best framed as Who one is a homosexual? or What one does, homosexuality.; The support is strongest for the latter. What is homosexuality? Homosexuality is a relationship issue. It is an illegitimate attempt to meet the legitimate need for same-sex intimacy. Physical sexual acts are often added to or substituted for those relational acts needed as a part of same-sex intimacy in relationships. A part of homosexuality is sexual immaturity and also involves learning. As a group, homosexuals are not a unitary, monolithic group and that is best indicated by names they use to self-identify themselves. Homosexual, Gay, Lesbian, Queer, but also, they use names associated with particular sexual behaviors. Not all homosexuals/gays/lesbians/queers want marriage. What do those advocating for homosexuality really want?
Changing language by those advocating for homosexuality is not uncommon. One very interesting example is the terms sexual preference and sexual orientation used in referenced to sexuality. In late 1960s and early 1970s during the beginning of what is now known as gay liberation, homosexuals/gay/lesbians used the term sexual preference to describe how they viewed their same-sex erotic attractions. Later around the middle 1980s those advocating for homosexuality begin using the term sexual orientation instead of sexual preference. The later implied choice by those practicing homosexuality, homosexual behavior. It was a social/political change to a more conservative period that led to those advocating for homosexuality to begin using the term sexual orientation instead of sexual preference. Also, significant in leading to this change in language was the consequences of male homosexual behavior, high rates of STDs and the HIV/AIDS epidemic which was tragic for gay males. Camille Paglia is an American social critic, intellectual, author and teacher. In 1971, she received a master’s degree in philosophy from Yale and a PhD in English Literature in 1974. Paglia is described as a libertarian, self-identifies as a bisexual and is supportive of homosexuality, while less supportive of gay rights.
From Stonewall to the first AIDS alert was only twelve short years. In the Eighties and early Nineties, displaced anxiety over the horrors of AIDS turned gay activists into rampaging nihilists and monomaniacs, who dishonestly blamed the disease on the government and trampled on the rights of the gay majority, and whose errors of judgment materially aided the rise and consolidation of the far right. AIDS did not appear out of nowhere. It was a direct result of the sexual revolution, which my generation unleashed with the best intentions, but whose worse effects were to be suffered primarily by gay men. In the West, despite much propaganda to the contrary, AIDS is a gay disease and will remain one for the foreseeable future. (Paglia, Vamps and Tramps. p.68)
The changing language is made even more important placed within the context of the 2003 United States Supreme Court’s ruling in Lawrence v. Texas. All things are lawful, but all things are not profitable. Lawrence v. Texas legalized homosexuality sodomy. The majority held that intimate consensual sexual conduct was part of the liberty protected by substantive due process under the Fourteenth Amendment. The statically documented fact known at that time was that the highest risk behavior for acquiring HIV/AIDS is receptive anal intercourse. This decision favors the liberty of the individual over the majority. But a strong argument can be made that the liberty of the individual may be overruled for the benefit, health, and welfare of the majority. What Lawrence v. Texas did was to further the continuation of the legitimization and normalization of homosexuality, homosexual behavior. Goodridge v. Massachusetts Department of Public Health may be seen as doing the same, the legitimization and normalization of homosexuality, homosexual behavior.
The disease first became evident among male homosexuals and intravenous drug users, and in the United States it remains disportionately concentrated in these two populations. (Rushing, The AIDS Epidemic: Social Dimensions of an Infectious Disease, p.1)
Before these two court decisions statically documented facts were available from local and state health departments and the United States Centers for Disease Control. These facts are the rising rates of STDs and HIV/AIDS among male homosexuals beginning in 2000. While the rates of STDs and HIV/AIDS have remained, constant or have even fallen among heterosexuals in the same time period. This information may be found online by visiting health departments and the CDC’s web pages.
In short, the gay lifestyle - if such a chaos can, after all, legitimately be called a lifestyle - it just doesn’t work: it doesn’t serve the two functions for which all social framework evolve: to constrain people’s natural impulses to behave badly and to meet their natural needs. While it’s impossible to provide an exhaustive analytic list of all the root causes and aggravants of this failure, we can asseverate at least some of the major causes. Many have been dissected, above, as elements of the Ten Misbehaviors; it only remains to discuss the failure of the gay community to provide a viable alternative to the heterosexual family. (Kirk and Madsen, After the Ball: How America Will Conquer Its Fear and Hatred of the Gays in the 90s, p.363)
The authors of this book published in 1989 self-identify as gay. Kirk graduated from Harvard University in 1980. Madsen has taught on the faculty of Harvard University. He is a public-communications expert, designed commercial advertising for Madsen Avenue, and guided strategy for the Positive Images Campaign. This campaign was the first national gay advertising effort in American.