Discussion in 'Debate & Marathon Threads Archive' started by stephenpe, May 9, 2012.
May 10, 2012
Same here Cerek!
Been waiting for more pastors to say the same thing! (that they will spend more time loving and not opposing gay rights etc)
The love of God is what draws people towards Him. Not condemnation, guilt...... i would like to read the article if you could pm me it?
I heard in a study that was done recently that the number 1 perception of christianity today is that we are anti-gay.....
Which i think is insane! What are we doing? The number 1 perception should be that we love other people! In 1 john it says that people will know we follow God by how we love other people.
Hi sizzla, I posted it on page 6.
I think this is a more valid perspective for sure, as you're reference a particular theory and body of research to support your claims. I'd be curious as to specifically what you've studied to have arrived at your conclusion that sexual orientation isn't 100% biologically determined? To clarify, I'm definitely not an expert, so I'm not disagreeing with you, but I think statements about something that can be scientifically proven should be based on the scientific evidence that's out there. Provided there is no scientific evidence, I think it makes sense to postulate based on the most relevant data that can be found. What articles or studies have you found to support your conclusion?
I can summarize the research out there for your benefit and the benefit of others, as I've definitely done a lot of research in the topic.
All that has been concluded so far is that there is no singular gay gene that has been discovered yet, and it's running out of places to hide since we've sequenced most of the human genome.
The prevailing theory at the moment, and one that I am a supporter of, because I myself have studied this topic in great detail (my major was human anthropological genetics) is that there are probably multiple genes affecting the appearance of homosexuality, and probably many different forms of homosexual attraction. The human genome is a complex thing, and it becomes more complex when you delve into incomplete dominance, epistasis, X-chromosome inactivation, and additive genetics. Genes interact in complex ways, especially regarding something as broad as human sexual attraction which draws upon many different systems in the body, including pheromone attraction, mental wiring, visual attraction, etc. Nobody who has ever experienced attraction to someone would ever say that it is a very simple thing. It is usually difficult to pinpoint just why you like the person.
In addition, there is a spectrum of homosexuality, and the factors that cause male homosexuality are likely different than the factors causing female homosexuality.
Twin studies show that there is a great likelihood of another twin raised in a different location still turning out to be gay, if their brother or sister is gay. Even studies that are questionable that religious right leaders like Rick Warren have cited say that if a twin is gay, "the other twin only has a 50% chance of being gay themselves". I don't think Rick Warren realized that the percentage of people being gay in the world is FAR less than 50% and that he downplayed a significant statistic. ANY evidence from twin studies that shows a trend that is different from the statistic in the general population (only about 4% of people are gay) pretty much confirms that homosexuality is genetic in nature (or related to womb environment). One paper I have read erroneously states that in order for a genetic basis to be concluded in twin studies, correlative homosexuality has to occur 100% of the time between separated twins, which is just logically incorrect.
There is little to NO evidence suggesting that homosexuality is brought about by environmental effects. There is anecdotal evidence that those who were molested when they were younger, or who had no fathers growing up have a greater chance of being gay, but statistical surveys do not support this.
There has also been evidence that sexuality may be affected by the type and concentration of hormones in the womb.
At this point there is not enough research to exactly pinpoint the cause of homosexuality, and papers written against the genetic basis of homosexuality point simply to the fact that scientists haven't yet worked out the complex interactions of genes, so their evidence is that there is no evidence yet.
All we know is that it isn't something sane people would choose, and that attempts to "cure" it usually end in disaster or relapse in the long-term even if there are short-term improvements. No gay-cures have been found to be medically effective, and in many cases are simply dangerous and abusive.
I'm not Christian, but I am religious. And it kills me that people use religion to explain why they are against gay rights. For me, religion always has been and always will be about love and service. It's about caring for humanity and being a good person. NOT about hurting people or inhibiting rights. It's about seeing good in everyone. I don't think God would want us to hate or hurt others.
So if you believe homosexuality is a sin, then that's fine. But there's no reason to vote against it, because that is hurting a lot of people. It's just not really anyone's business.
The more I look around at these issues, the more similarities I see between modern-day Christians and the Pharisees in the Bible. The Pharisees were the religious leaders of their time. They believed in a literal translation of the Books of Moses, added oral traditions to those and demanded strict adherence to these "laws" for one to be considered righteous. They became very prideful and arrogant in their religious superiority and condescending towards those they felt did not "measure up". They showed contempt and condemnation for those that broke "God's Law", rather than love and compassion for their fellow man. Sound familiar?
For those who believe their religious morality is the "best" morality and should be "protected" (aka "enforced") through law, it is worth noting that Jesus had nothing good to say about the Pharisees. In fact, the Pharisees (and the Sadducees who were similar in their religious arrogance) were the only two groups Jesus actually showed something akin to disdain for. He openly criticized their restrictive interpretations of God's Law as well as their actions towards fellow believers. He chastised them for abusing their power of religious authority rather than using it to benefit their fellow man.
Again, that sounds eerily similar to what we see too often in our country today. I'm not talking about the crazy extremists like Phelps or even Sean Harris. Although they do a tremendous amount of damage, they are SO extreme that many people understand they don't serve as a true representative of "Christians" in general.
Still, the fact the primary perception of Christianity today is "anti-gay" should tell us we are definitely going about this the wrong way.
Thanks so much Peregrin5 - very helpful post indeed!
Laws can be changed. It does not have to be the marriage law to ensure that people can be at the bedside of other people. Just have the laws changed that states that anyone who wants to be by the bedside can.
I would love them, but I would of course not accept those choices. And I would blame myself.
Just like I would blame myself if my child grew up and didn't take school seriously, or was a cold hearted person, or became a criminal. If I'm the parent, its my fault.
The studying I did was 10ish years ago in school. I don't remember any specific studies. But again to me, it is like personality traits. My DNA can have me more likely to be a calm, angry, patient, even tempered, etc. type of person. The way I am raised though will impact how far to one side of that I go or to another. Based on the DNA I am more likely to be a certain type of personality, but the environment I am raised in can definitely impact it as well. I believe sexuality is the same way. People can be born more or less likely to sway one way or another, and then something in the environment can sway it or not. What that thing is that would sway it, there is no way to tell, because every person reacts differently to different situations.
Overall this is based on basic human observation.
I'm probably beating a dead horse here, but marriage being stricted to man/woman is a religious belief, not governmental one. Given the separation of church & state, I'm not sure why a man/man or woman/woman marriage should be prohibited because it goes against some underlying beliefs of a particular religion?
There was an interesting post on the previous page by Peregrin5 which I had some great info. I believe that one of the summaries was that, while there is no absolutely identified cause of homosexuality, the evidence currently available suggests that it is not environmentally determined.
I hear what you're saying, and it makes intuitive sense given that the manifestations of most biological predispositions are influenced by environmental variables.
Again, I'm not highly familiar with the research, so I'd defer to those that had. However, given the fact that all existing research at present indicates a biological origin, with no evidence for environmental influence, I'd say that holding a belief to the contrary may be on shaky ground from a scientific perspective. I'd also say that, even if one were to have a viewpoint in contrast to the current evidence, one would most likely need to have a relative amount of expertise in the area, rather than simply a lay person's casual findings based on old evidence.
Thank you both. I sincerely appreciate it.
I know I state my positions and opinions very strongly at times (perhaps too strongly), but I really do try to respect EVERY perspective and viewpoint, even those directly opposed to my own.
Bandnerd - if we were not on opposite sides of those issues, there would never be any "balance". We all need someone to present a completely different POV so we can, hopefully, see issues from a different perspective. I try to be as open-minded as I can when looking at those different perspectives.
Peregrin - I feel your dad and I are similar in our feelings, but maybe I've progressed a little farther down the path (no disrespect to your dad, at all). I used to feel very much like he does - I was stubbornly opposed to gay "marriage" at all. I was willing to concede allowing "civil unions" for gays, but felt the term "marriage" should be preserved strictly for a man and a woman. Then President Bush suggested we actual make than an Amendment to the U.S. Constitution (not a state constitution). That just flipped a switch for me and I suddenly realized just how ridiculous all the arguments I had offered for the "sanctity of the term 'marriage' " really were.
If I truly believed gays deserved the same, basic rights as hetero couples, why did I keep insisting they call their relationship a "union" instead of a "marriage". It just did not make sense anymore.
I didn't have the chance to vote against the "Marriage Protection Amendment", but stated then that I would vote against it if it were ever proposed at the state level - which is exactly what I did.
Some language, but worth a look-see.
I love this picture:
People have gotten angry at me for just that reason before. :lol:
Oh my gosh...that's funny! Because I most certainly DO get mad when someone is eating donuts while I diet! :lol:
I was tought to be disgusted by gays. Like, for real...it wasn't just that my stepdad was repulsed by gays and talked freely of that, but he attempted to force me to believe the same.
We had a very, very difficult relationship back in the day... :unsure:
For a long time, my belief was that I didn't care if two people were in a homosexual relationship, but I thought it was best to not have kids because it complicated things. I thought the very same thing about two-race couples (by which I really meant black and white couples). I grew, changed, really considered the issues, evolved...whatever you want to call it...and I no longer hold those beliefs.
I have no desire to get into a scientific debate about this. I have stated what I personally believe based on my own personal study (research study of people) and my own observations of people and how they develop in life.
I compare sexuality with patience. Some people develop it one way, some develop it another.
I believe homosexuality to be wrong and while I can respect the people I can not tolerate promoting something that I believe to be wrong.
I do believe it is my place because my goal is not just to have a good life for myself, but I want the society as a whole to have good lives. Promoting homosexual marriage leads to other things I do not believe are right.
It is not that I think gay people are bad, we all are bad in certain ways. Nobody is really more bad than another. but to promote an act that is bad, that is what I can not do. This is where the argument will always come to a head. Some will say the act is fine some will say it is not. There is no scientific evidence that could change the belief that homosexual acts are wrong.
And that picture that was posted, which someone said they loved, I have to admit, kinda gross to me. That is not something that I want to ever have to look at.
Very funny Mike.
I'm not trying to be funny; I just don't see the consequences you're hinting at.
I was trying to avoid getting into that aspect during this discussion, but.
One thing gay marriage can lead to is gay couples having children. While there may not be a problem with this and the couples could do a great job, to me it is not ideal.
To me it is the same as a single woman wanting to go and have a child on her own, it is not ideal and I do not agree with it. To me the ideal is to have a mother and a father to raise children. I also understand that this does not always work out and some mother and father combinations do not always do the best job, but to me it is the ideal situation and should be the goal. While the ideal does not always happen and even when it does it doesn't always work out, it should be the goal.
This is just one example of what can/does happen.
I know, I know...who am I to say what the ideal is. (I'm just guessing that would be the response of some)
Please watch this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FSQQK2Vuf9Q
Also, a consequence is our society becoming more and more acceptable of things that are wrong. Gay marriage just happens to be one of these things that is in the spotlight.
May 11, 2012
As I said, gay couples could do a great job raising children. As could a single mother, but I don't think either of those is the ideal situation, the best possible situation, the right situation.
One thing I have said in the past, one positive about gay couples, less procreation in a world that is already too populated.
If they can do a great job then I don't see what your problem is. What is "ideal" for you? And don't just say "one man, one woman" because that's not answering my question.
... but how is it wrong? Who are you to say what is and what isn't "wrong"? A 50-year-old marrying a 12-year-old? Yes, that's wrong. But two consenting adults who love each other? I fail to see how that's "wrong."
Callmebob, I'm not trying to challenge your religious views on homosexuality, as I think religious debate is inherently non-scientific and not based in rationality, but based on a belief that there are absolute right and wrongs that exist because God says so, not because they can be justified or proven. I personally hold some of those beliefs, and respect others' beliefs as I would expect my own to be respected in this area.
What I'm not clear on is if you are defending your right to scientifically believe something in spite of evidence, or your religious right? If you're defending the latter when you say,
then I'm fully supportive. If you're trying to say, however, that you your beliefs should be respected on a scientific or rational level simply because you have those beliefs, I disagree. I disagree because, as I've mentioned before, scientific and rational questions aren't matters of opinion like which color you like best, or which religious belief you chose to find personally valid.
You may not be interested in getting into a scientific debate about homosexuality, and that's fair, but you probably can't expect to be taken seriously in a discussion that involves reason or scientific fact if you're going to ignore both of those things when you state opinions, even when you're presented with contradictory evidence.
In terms of your comments about gay marriage being harmful, the issues you've mentioned again aren't borne out by current evidence. There's no support that gay couples are worse parents. On the contrary, evidence suggests they can provide a positive climate for child development.
You also mentioned that acceptance of gay marriage leads to acceptance of things that are wrong in society? What are you thinking about that has become accepted because of changing views on gay marriage?
Just like how I feel that it is wrong to say "oh my god" in a derogatory way. I don't let my students say that in my classroom because I feel it is wrong and I don't like it. I'd personally rather them call each other stupid than hear them say that. Some teacher don't think it is wrong and let their students say it. We disagree on what is right and wrong.
What specifically do you find a heterosexual couple could provide that a homosexual couple could not? I'm guessing a preliminary response would be that a heterosexual couple includes a mother, and that mothers are important. However, I'd challenge you to take it a step further - specifically what variables do mothers contribute to childrearing that a second partner in a homosexual relationship could not, other than conventional wisdom about the importance of "a mother's love?"
Again, I think there's some confusion here - there are really two separate conversations happening side by side. One is a conversation about religious morality and theology, and another is the scientific accuracy that homosexuality contributes to problems in society. Still a third is how non-religiously based law should treat a homosexual couple.
Ed, I have to admit, you lost me a little bit there in your questioning.
So you're going to compare someone's life to a phrase which students can be conditioned to not say? Makes a lot of sense.
Sorry - which part?