If you are one of those “enlightened” people who have no moral problem with homosexual behavior or same sex marriage, then repeat after me:
I, (fill in your name here), am an enlightened person who has no moral problem with homosexual behavior or same sex “marriage.”
If you said the above, you’ve taken an important step in the right direction. Homosexuality is constituted solely by subjective feelings and volitional acts on which there is no moral consensus.
Did you think that homosexuality is a morally neutral condition like biological sex, race and ethnicity, and nationality? It’s not. So much for that “enlightened” label.
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Welcome to the discussion. We all live and learn so don’t feel too bad.
“Oh, but that debate is over,” you say. “The liberals have won. Just look at the polling data showing how the younger generation feels.”
That’s right — they feel. Now they are going to have to be forced to think. And for many, I know, it will be a painful new experience. Nevertheless adulthood and civilization demands it.
Michael Cook, the editor of MercatorNet, recently wrote in an article titled, “No White Flag. Ever.”:
Acceptance of the moral legitimacy of homosexuality and same-sex marriage upends pillars of Western culture, including the Enlightenment approach to science as the exploration of reality with reason and evidence. And if you think that I am drawing too long a bow, just read a recent article in the Journal of Medical Ethics by two British women, Rachel Bingham and Natalie Banner. It is a gem of ideological fanaticism.
The mise en scène is a discussion of homosexuality’s controversial history as a psychiatric disorder. In the first edition of the Bible of psychiatry, the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM), in 1952, it was classified as a “sociopathic personality disorder.” In the second edition in 1968 this was softened by classifying homosexuality as a “sexual deviation.” In 1972, in the third edition, however, after years of lobbying and debate, it was declassified the by the American Psychiatric Association. Victory! Homosexuality, according to the world’s leading psychiatric body, was a normal form of sexual expression.
What reasons were put forward for this amazing turn of events? This is where the analysis of Bingham and Banner — who have not a milligram of homophobic bile between them — gets interesting. There weren’t any. “It is widely accepted,” they write, “that ultimately the removal of homosexuality was not so much an outcome of new scientific knowledge, as … ‘an action demanded by the ideological temper of the times.’” In other words, declassification was a nakedly political decision. Evidence, shmevidence. Who needs that?
But the change left an embarrassing gap in the discipline of psychiatry. If political pressure, and not reason or facts, explains the declassification of homosexuality, could anything be described as a “disorder” or “deviation”? How about ADHD? Personality disorders? Bipolar disorder in childhood?
Regarding the kids, first, few graduates of American public schools are up to the task of wrestling with articles like Michael Cook’s (read it in full here), let alone articles like this one: “A Clash of Orthodoxies.”
Second, haven’t we learned our lesson about listening to children and taking them seriously? Surely the intellectual legacy of those protesting college kids from the late 1960s is more than enough to steer us away from making the same mistake again.
Some argue that because 31 U.S. states have state constitutional amendments banning legal recognition of same-sex marriage, and 16 states currently allow it, the battle is lost for those who are winning 31-16. Yes, you read that right. Oh, and by the way, inside that 16, five of the states the decision was made not by the people but by the courts. In many of the rest, the vote in the respective legislatures was close.
One conservative actually said recently that the Supreme Court’s DOMA ruling ended the debate. Sure, just like Dred Scott and Roe v. Wade settled things in slavery and abortion. The same writer said that social conservatives are ready to lay down their arms. Don’t ask me to explain that. It’s clear some people need to spend more time at Barbwire.com.
The potential political fallout for this struggle is easy to envision. Barbwire’s editor-in-chief Matt Barber recently spoke with OneNewsNow.com:
If [the Republican Party moves] away from these non-negotiable, transcendent issues on marriage, human sexuality, morality, life and other things, they will commit political suicide.[…]
Barber contends that if the Republican Party abandons its base, conservatives and people of faith, “then we will see Democrat rule in perpetuity at least for the next several decades.”
Barber says he believes in the Ronald Reagan approach to take over the Republican Party and reform from within. But if the Republican Party continues on its current trajectory then “we’ll have no choice as Christians but to break away and form a third party.”
That split will mean Democrats will reign supreme for the long haul.
That sure doesn’t sound to me like there’s a plan to lay down arms or surrender.
The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Barb Wire.