2. Choosing our Words
3. The Right to Therapy
4. Responding to gay activism
5. Life expectancy of homosexually active persons
6. Suicide Studies
7. Age of Consent
8. Speaking the truth with love
9. Attack on Ex-Gay Ministries
10. Review of "Real Boys" by W. Pollack
11. American Bishops support Vatican action
12. Preparing for the Boy Scout Case
13. Baptists in Chicago
23. October 13, 2001
Friendship, Forgiveness, Freedom
26. February 5, 2003
No, you haven't missed any issues of Heartbeat
News, and you have not been dropped from the distribution list.
Canticle, the Magazine for Todays Catholic Woman
is holding its third conference in Irving, Texas, March 21 and 22.
coloring book - The Art of Raphael
is now available
Homosexuality and Hope from the Catholic Medical
Association is available Translators required.
WRONG WITH SAME-SEX MARRIAGE AND HOMOSEXUAL PRIESTS
26. February 22, 2003
Aids in Africa
Funding should be cut from those organizations whose
willful blindness has resulted in so many deaths. Perhaps a good lawyer should start a
class-action suit against these organizations on the behalf of the African victims.
The gay activists blame the undeniable problems from which homosexually active persons
suffer on social discrimination, which they label "heterosexism" and define as
the belief that sexual relations between a man and a woman are normal and should be
privileged by society and those between persons of the same sex are abnormal. Gay
activists insist that such a belief is the equivalent of racism and should be stamped out
by a massive anti-bias education campaign. They are well aware that this would require
changing language, literature, laws, social customs, and religious beliefs throughout all
Even if they were to succeed in this gigantic enterprise, homosexually attracted
children would still feel different than their non-homosexual parents and peers.
Homosexual acts still could not create children. Education can't change these facts and
anecdotal evidence suggests that an aggressive educational program may produce an
unintended backlash. The vast majority of people, even those experiencing homosexual
attractions do not want to be homosexually attracted. A substantial portion of the
population are repulsed by the very idea of homosexual acts, indeed many homosexuals
report initial repulsion to the behavior. The majority of parents do not want their
children to be homosexually active.
What can be changed is the homosexual condition. It can be prevented and treated.
2. CHOOSING OUR WORDS
The words "homosexual" and "heterosexual" were made up in the 19th
century. Unfortunately the public has come to believe that human beings can be divided
into permanent and stable categories based on their unalterable sexual orientation. When
we use the words "heterosexual" and "homosexual" as nouns or to define
a person as in "homosexual man," we are perpetuating that misconception.
Therefore, when I write I try to replace the word "homosexual" used as a noun
with other terms -- terms which remind people that we are all either male or female.
Changing language requires discipline. I continually come across examples in my own
writing where I fell into using homosexual as a noun. It is sometimes extremely difficult
to find the right term for the context. Here are a few suggestions.
In general we can speak of "men and women who engage in homosexual behavior"
When writing in a religious context: "Men and women who experience homosexual
temptations" or the broader category of "persons experiencing
When writing in a medical context: "Men who have sex with men." In terms of
the spread of disease, those who are not having sex with men are not at risk.
When writing in a psychological context: "Men and women who experience same-sex
attractions" or "men and women with homosexual attractions."
When writing about the political struggle: "Gay activists." Since "gay" and "lesbian"
refer to men and women who hold a particular ideological view of
sexuality, "ex-gay" -- that is a person who
has renounced that ideology -- is an appropriate term.
When they use "gay,
and transgendered," we can respond with
"men and women suffering from gender identity
problems." In particular, we need to focus attention on the abuse of the medical
process known as sex reassignment. As a woman, I resent the idea that cutting off a man's
private parts and pumping him full of hormones makes him a woman. Every cell of his body
still contains DNA which reads "male." The fact that
transsexuality is extremely hard to treat after
adolescence is all the more reason to encourage early identification and treatment of
Gender Identity Disorder.
Of course never use any of the insulting terms, since these reflect badly on the user.
Instead of "heterosexual", whenever possible I use "men and women".
When reporting on research, it is important to distinguish between a sample that includes
men and women in general and one in which the men and women who do not experience same-sex
attraction or engage in same-sex relations are separated from those who do.
3. THE RIGHT TO THERAPY
Those of us engaged in the battle against the gay agenda are too often forced into a
defensive position because our opponents have defined the issues -- gay rights, hate
crimes, gay marriage, gays in the military, gay youth suicide, gay scouts. In order to
succeed in turning the tide, we need a carefully crafted communication strategy. We need a
strategy that is easily defendable and easily understood, one where we have the high
ground. At this moment such a strategy could be based on a strong defense of THE RIGHT TO
It is very clear that gay activists are trying to make therapy for same-sex attraction
illegal. In a Washington Times opinion piece (December 28,1999), Dr. Laura Schlessinger
wrote that she had received "hundreds and hundreds of letters from doctors and
therapists, as well as from ad hoc groups of mental health professionals, who are
frightened to offer any support to homosexuals seeking ways to normalize their sexuality,
because of 'official' positions from their various professional associations."
The attacks on those who provide therapy for homosexually attracted persons or even
support the idea that change is possible are spreading around the world. The Catholic
Archdiocese of Melbourne has come under attack from gay activists for promoting "an
American-based fundamentalist Christian group [Courage] which believes the sexual
orientation of gays and lesbians can be changed by prayer and therapy." The
Archbishop was warned by Michael Kelly, spokesman for the Rainbow Sash, that simply
mentioning the possibility of change could drive homosexuals to "the brink of despair
The heart of the gay activists' communication strategy is that homosexuality is an
unchangeable condition. They insist that therapy doesn't work, even though they know that
it can. They attempt justify their claim by defining success in absolute terms: before
treatment the person must have never experienced opposite attraction or engaged in
heterosexual relations and after treatment the person must be totally heterosexual in
behavior and never have another same-sex thought or temptation for the rest of his life.
It would be equivalent of saying that no diet program works unless the person never gains
back one ounce and is never tempted to indulge. The gay activists know that the majority
of homosexually active persons have had some heterosexual experience, so this gives them
an out. They can say that those who change weren't really "homosexual." The
activists also admit when pushed that change of behavior is possible. They pretend that
therapy is directed only to changing behavior, even though the therapists and support
groups consider a person to have succeeded in changing only when the sexual attraction
patterns are also altered. Many people coming out of homosexuality consider celibacy is a
worthy goal, but gay activists refuse to consider a person changed unless they are
heterosexually active. In no other area of psychological healing is treatment denied
because the therapist can't guarantee an absolute and total cure. Do therapists refuse to
treat depression because the client might some time in the future have a blue day?
However, even if the gay activists' narrow criteria for success were accepted, their
claim that there are no reports of change in the literature is false. Robert Goetz, New
Directions Ministries in Toronto reviewed of 17 published studies and found reports on 44
individuals who had been exclusively or predominantly homosexual and experienced a full
shift of sexual orientation.
Warren Throckmorton, who reviewed the literature on modifying sexual orientation, found
that those gay affirming researchers, who had reported that such efforts rarely succeeded,
neglected to include a number of significant studies. Throckmorton concludes:
"Narrowly, the question to be addressed is: Do conversion therapy techniques work to
change unwanted sexual arousal? I submit that the case against conversion therapy requires
opponents to demonstrate that no clients have benefited from such procedures or that any
benefits are too costly in some objective way to be pursued even if they work. The
available evidence supports the observation of many counselors -- that many individuals
with same-gender sexual orientation have been able to change through a variety of
counseling approaches." [Throckmorton, M. (1996) Efforts to modify sexual
orientation: A review of outcome literature and ethical issues. Journal of Mental Health
and Counseling. 20, 4: 283 -305.]
While the facts are on our side, we have to present those facts in a way which is
easily understood and accepted. A communications strategy requires a number of elements:
Theme, Spokespersons, Target, Repetition.
THEME -- THE RIGHT TO THERAPY
Tragically we live in an age, where the majority of people today do not understand the
concept of natural law. Their understanding of human psychology has been distorted by the
media and they react negatively to words like tradition, truth, morality, sin, and right
and wrong. But they do support the idea of "rights." Therefore, we need to be
for "rights." People have the right to know that therapy is available and to
receive therapy which respects their religious and moral convictions.
We can point out the irony that the same professional organizations, which oppose
individuals' right to choose therapy to designed to change their pattern of sexual
attraction, support the right of men suffering from the delusion that they are women to
have their genitals cut off, even though genital mutilation does not always succeed in
alleviating the client's psychological problems and cannot change the fact that every cell
in his mutilated body remains indelibly marked male.
Homosexually active men and women may choose therapy for a variety of reasons. They may
belong to a religion that regards same-sex activity as a sin. They may have found the
homosexual lifestyle unfulfilling. They may wish to marry and have children. Given that
50% of men who have sex with men will, according to epidemiologists, become infected with
HIV or another potentially fatal disease, they may wish to protect their health. Whatever
the reason, why can't they make this decision? Why shouldn't they be informed about the
various forms of therapy available and the potential for success?
Because the gay activists know that information about therapy successes undercuts the
their public claim that homosexuality is an unchangeable attribute. The success of some
makes those won't try feel bad. The availability of therapy sends a message that
homosexuality is something from which a number of people want to be free.
The writings of the gay activists who oppose therapy reveal that their ultimate goal is
the destruction of "heterosexism," defined as societal attitudes which favor the
sexual union of men and women. In pursuit of a non-heterosexist world they are willing to
sacrifice the rights of individuals who want out of homosexuality.
SPOKESPERSONS - THOSE WHO HAVE COME OUT OF HOMOSEXUALITY
A communication strategy requires spokespersons. We have the testimony of brave souls
who have succeeded in coming out of homosexuality. Although many of them prefer to simply
live their new lives, a few have been willing to speak out for the truth that real change
is possible. We need to let them speak for themselves, to listen to them, and to tell
So far as possible, religious leaders, therapists, pro-family activists, and political
conservatives need to step into the background. One Ann Paulk is worth a thousand Jerry
Falwells. When asked to give a quote or appear on TV, the spokespersons for conservative
values should refer the media to acknowledged leaders of the ex-Gay movement. We can thank
God that at this moment we are blessed with men and women who have experienced freedom for
a number of years.
We must be careful to recommend only those who have been in recovery for some time and
who are associated with solid groups. Recovery takes time and premature media exposure can
be dangerous for individual.
TARGET - THE PROFESSIONAL ASSOCIATIONS WHO HAVE CAVED INTO PRESSURE
If we are for therapy, who is against it? A small group of extremists who have taken
over professional organizations, in particular the American Psychiatric Association and
American Psychological Association. These takeovers were effected by threats,
demonstrations, the shouting down of opponents, and the misuse of research. In his book
"Homosexuality and American Psychiatry: The Politics of Diagnosis," Ronald Bayer
provides a clear account of the politics behind the decision to remove homosexuality from
the American Psychiatric Association's Diagnostic and Statistical Manual. Bayer's book is
a must read for those who are involved in this issue not because Bayer is on our side,
indeed he supports the gay activists' agenda, but because he reveals what really happened.
According to Bayer: "The result was not a conclusion based on an approximation of the
scientific truth as dictated by reason, but was instead an action demanded by the
ideological temper of the time."
We have to be very careful not to sound as if we are against ordinary homosexually
attracted men and women. They are victims. They have the right to refuse therapy, but we
have a duty to protect those who want therapy and to let those who are confused know that
a number of forms of therapy are available.
In this regard, we need to stress the importance of freedom of religion. Those who
believe that all homosexual acts are condemned by God have a right to therapy which
respects their belief and helps them to find freedom from unwanted sexual feelings. On the
other hand, if, because of pressure from professional associations, a time comes when
therapy to change a person's pattern of sexual attraction is only available from religious
counselors and religion-based support groups, men and women who are not religious will be
denied the help they need. Therefore, the right to non-religion based therapy for same-sex
attraction must be defended.
The unprofessionalness of the professional organizations which discourage therapy and
the researchers they use to back up their statements must be exposed. This can be done by
showing through direct quotes how they have abandoned objectivity, promoted the sexual
liberation agenda, opposed religious freedom, and become tools of gay militants. The
public needs to be constantly reminded that the American Psychological Association was
censured for promoting a defender of pedophiles and that Kinsey, their favorite researcher
and his institute, protected pedophiles.
In order for a communication strategy to work, the public must hear the same clear
simple message over and over. This takes time, at least a year, probably 2 or 3. It takes
discipline to remember when you are speaking, writing on the subject, or just talking to
friends to repeat the key phrase "I support the right to therapy for homosexually
attracted individuals." It is even better if the statement can be backed up with
personal experience "I know people who have come out of homosexuality, you should
talk to them."
Repetition will work if members of support groups, religious organizations, pro-family
activists, conservative political action groups, and therapists around the world
informally agree to use the same language.
Those who have not seen the evidence for change may reference the files marked
"Change" on Dale's Disk or contact Exodus International in Seattle or
Regeneration Ministries in Baltimore MD. These organizations can supply a list of books
and pamphlets containing testimonies of those who have come out of homosexuality.
Many people find Jeff Satinover's book "Homosexuality and the Politics of
Truth" to be the most compelling presentation of the subject. He writes"...in
the eight years between 1966 and 1974 alone, just the Medline database -- which excludes
many psychotherapy journals -- listed over a thousand articles on the treatment of
homosexuality... These reports clearly contradict claims that change is flatly impossible.
Indeed, it would be more accurate to say that all the existing evidence suggests strongly
that homosexuality is quite changeable. Most psychotherapists will allow that in the
treatment of any condition, a 30 percent rate may be anticipated."
Satinover concludes with the following:
"I have been extraordinarily fortunate to have met many people who have emerged
from the gay life. When I see the personal difficulties they have squarely faced, the
sheer courage they have displayed not only in facing these difficulties but also in
confronting a culture that uses every possible means to deny the validity of their values,
goals, and experiences, I truly stand back in wonder... It is these people -- former
homosexuals and those who are still struggling, all across America and aboard -- who stand
for me as a model of everything good and possible in a world that takes the human heart,
and the God of that heart, seriously. In my various explorations within the worlds of
psychoanalysis, psychotherapy, and psychiatry, I have simply never before seen such
The evidence is overwhelming and eventually the truth must overcome the lies.
4. RESPONDING TO GAY ACTIVISM
Those who favor homosexual equality -- treating same sex relationships as though they
were in every way equal to opposite sex relationships in marriage -- are staging a full
court press: pushing for gays in the military, gay scouts, gay marriage, gay educational
programs, gay adoption, and gay surrogate parenting, plus directly attacking Exodus,
Courage, and reparative therapy. This week there was an article on gay priests with AIDS
which received a great deal of publicity. On the positive side there have been a number of
excellent articles opposing the gay agenda, one by Jeff Jacoby in the Boston Globe, a
column by Mona Charen and two columns by Mackubin Thomas Owens, on gays in the military in
the Providence Journal. On the other hand, the gay agenda is being promoted world wide.
Just this week I received word of initiatives in Australia, Canada, Europe, and South
The gay agenda is succeeding because the public is convinced that homosexuality is
genetically determined and unchangeable. While each separate attack must be addressed,
unless the underlying falsehood is addressed the activists will succeed in undermining
societal respect for the family, natural law, and all Bible-based religion.
The problem for those who defend the truth is that truth is infinitely more complex
that the lie. Same-sex attraction does not have a single cause and, because each person
who experiences same-sex attraction and/or engages in same-sex behavior has a unique
history, no one remedy is appropriate for all.
For Christians chastity according to one's state in life is the appropriate goal, not
the substitution of heterosexual sins for homosexual sins, but freedom from sexual sin.
Not all of those who come out of homosexuality will marry. Some of those who come out of
homosexuality feel that they are called to celibacy. For others marriage is simply not an
Dr. Laura, the radio psychologist, has initiated a dialogue on the question of therapy
and change with Dr. Robert Spitzer who, as chair of the APA's Task Force on Nomenclature,
was highly influential in the decisions dealing with homosexuality. I have heard that he
will be on 20/20 Friday talking about the treatment of homosexuality and is looking for
testimonies of people who have come out of homosexuality through therapy, but not through
religious support programs. I wonder if this is not like looking for people who have come
out of alcoholism through therapy and not through AA.
In the 1920's therapists tried and failed to cure alcoholism, this did not mean that
there was no way to effectively treat the problem, but that the problem required a
different and more comprehensive approach. The 12 step program of AA proved successful
where therapy had failed, but even so many of those who come to AA do not succeed in
maintaining sobriety. No one, however, suggests that AA should be disbanded because it
doesn't succeed with everyone. Those who come to AA are encouraged to attend 90 meetings
in the first 90 days and to "keep coming." Doesn't it stand to reason that the
far more complex problem of homosexuality may require an even more holistic approach --
daily support, psychological insight, inner healing, and spiritual counseling.
I envision the recovery process as slow and moving in stages: first freedom from the
sexual behavior with others; then freedom from compulsive fantasy and solitary sexual
activity; in the next stage, strong temptations would still occur in moments of stress,
but gradually these would become less frequent, and the person would become more able to
resist them. Finally, opposite sex attractions might or might not appear spontaneously
after a number of years. Recovery can be complicated by a history of sexual child abuse,
deep rejection from parents and peers, multiple addictions and substance abuse. In a few
instances, the person may suffer from other psychological problems such as social anxiety
or borderline personality disorder which need to be addressed separately.
I would very much like to hear from those who have come out of homosexuality about what
works and what doesn't.
Most of all we must encourage everyone to pray for those struggling with same-sex
5. LIFE EXPECTANCY OF HOMOSEXUALLY ACTIVE PERSONS
In the last few weeks I have received several questions about the life expectancy of
homosexually active persons as compared to that of the general population. Paul Cameron,
William Playfair, and Stephen Wellum published an article "The Longevity of
Homosexuals: Before and After the AIDS Epidemic"in Omega: Journal of Death and
Dying. (Vol. 29, issue 3, pages 249 - 272) and many of the published statements on
this subject are probably based on this research. I suggest that anyone interested in this
topic obtain a copy of the original article.
The research has been criticized for drawing conclusions not totally justified by the
method. The problem is that the study compares obituaries in gay newspapers to those in
general newspapers and there is no way to judge if the selective obituaries in the gay
papers are comparable to the complete list of deaths found in an ordinary newspaper. It is
possible that many homosexuals drift out of the active homosexual community as they age
and return to their families or to solitary lives and thus are at the time of death in old
age no longer considered "gay." However, the fact that 6,570 obituaries of
homosexual men and 163 of homosexual women were studied provides interesting, if not
conclusive, evidence that being homosexually active and "out" carries risks.
What conclusions can be drawn from Cameron et al's exhaustive review of
obituaries? 1) There is an amazing dearth of obituaries of homosexuals over 65; and 2) a
large number of homosexuals die young from accidents, violence, and disease. Particularly
chilling is the list of the ages, occupations, and causes of death on homosexual men who
did not die of AIDS and of lesbian women. One is struck by the number of murders and
suicides. Given the high rates of sexually transmitted diseases, drug and alcohol abuse,
smoking, suicide, and domestic violence among homosexually active persons, the contention
that homosexually active persons have a dramatically shortened life expectancy is
certainly justified. In the list of causes of death, there are numerous cases of death
from cancer, heart disease, and respiratory failure in persons under 45. A number of STDs
have been linked to cancer, in particular hepatitis B and C and human papilloma virus both
of which are epidemic in the gay community. There is also some research to suggest that
the common sexually transmitted disease chlamydia may be a causal factor in some forms of
heart disease. Thus, some of these deaths may be linked to homosexual behavior. Cameron et
al also present a review of other studies suggesting a dearth of homosexually active
persons over 65.
I personally would not use the statistic that life expectancy for homosexual men
without AIDS is 41, but I would feel confident quoting the actual findings of the review
of obituaries, in combination with the massive research on the high rates of STDs,
substance abuse, violence, and suicide among homosexually active persons.
[The research was updated in the Dec. 1995 edition of Family
6. SUICIDE STUDIES
In its October issue Archives of General Psychiatry published two studies on the
relationship between suicide and homosexuality and three commentaries on these studies by
experts in the field. In an elegantly designed co-twin study Herrell et al found that men
with same-sex partners were 6.5 times as likely as their co-twins to have attempted
suicide. The higher rate was not explained by mental health or substance abuse disorders.
The second article reported on a New Zealand birth cohort study, which
has followed 1007 individuals since birth. Fergusson et al found that, at age 21, the 28
classified as gay, lesbian or bisexual were significantly more likely to have had mental
health problems than the 979 classed as heterosexual. The following is an excerpt from a
chart included in the report:
|Psychiatric disorders age 14 -21
|Generalized anxiety disorder
|Other substance abuse/dependence
In other words at age 21 the GLB portion of the cohort has significantly
more problems in every category.
In a commentary, J. Bailey, who has published a number of studies on homosexuality,
wrote: "Several reactions to the new studies are predictable. First, some mental
health professionals who opposed the successful 1973 referendum to remove homosexuality
from DSM-III5 will feel vindicated. Second, some social conservatives will attribute the
findings to the inevitable consequences of the choice of a homosexual lifestyle. Third,
and in stark contrast to the other 2 positions, many people will conclude that widespread
prejudice against homosexual people causes them to be unhappy or worse, mentally ill.
Commitment to any of these positions would be premature, however, and should be
discouraged. In fact, a number of potential interpretations of the findings need to be
considered, and progress toward scientific understanding will be achieved only by
eliminating competing explanations."
After looking at a number of other explanations Bailey concludes, "It is unlikely
that any one of these models will explain all of the differences in the psychopathology
between homosexual and heterosexual people. Perhaps social ostracism causes gay men and
lesbians to become depressed, but why would it cause gay men to have eating disorders? Two
things are certain, however. First, more research is needed to understand the fascinating
and important findings of Fergusson et al and Herrell et al. Second, it would be a shame
most of all for gay men and lesbians whose mental health is at stake if
sociopolitical concerns prevented researchers from conscientious consideration of any
What can we learn from these studies? First, these studies confirm that when the
general population is studied the percentage of homosexually active or self-identified
persons is low - 2.8% of the 1007 in the New Zealand study (20 people who self-identified
as gay, lesbian, or bisexual and 8 others who reported same-sex experience after age 16).
Of the 6,537 men in the Herrell et al study only 120 reported any same gender partners
Second, contrary to the claims made by gay activists, homosexually active persons as a
group are not as psychological healthy as the general population.
Even if the cause of these problems could be proved to be societal oppression resulting
in internalized homophobia as claimed by gay activists (which is highly unlikely), the
question remains: "What is the proper response?" If homosexual attraction were
an untreatable, unchangeable condition, then treating internalized homophobia would be the
only remedy, but given the massive evidence that homosexual attraction can be prevented
and in many (but admittedly not all) cases successful treated then, given the risks
associated with homosexual attraction, shouldn't homosexually attracted persons and
parents of children at risk be informed of their options? At the least, shouldn't treating
homosexuality be offered as an option?
"Sexual Orientation and Suicidality," Archives of General
Psychiatry, Oct. 1999, Vol. 56, No. 10, pages 867 - 888. -"A Co-twin Control Study in
Adult Men" by R. Herrell, J. Goldberg, W. True, V. Ramakrishnan, M. Lyons, S. Eisen,
"Is Sexual Orientation Related to Mental Health Problems and
Suicidality in Young People?" by D. Fergusson, L. Horwood, A. Beautrais.;
"Homosexuality, Psychopathology, and Suicidality," R. Friedman.;
Suicide and Sexual Orientation," G. Remafedi.
"Homosexuality and Mental Illness," J. Bailey.
7. AGE OF CONSENT - REASONS WHY LOWERING THE AGE OF CONSENT FOR
HOMOSEXUAL RELATIONS WILL CAUSE SEVERE HARM TO AN ALREADY VULNERABLE POPULATION
Governments routinely restrict the activity of children and adolescents in order to
protect them. Laws governing driving, drinking, smoking, and sexual activity have included
arbitrary age limits. Setting such limits involves weighing the risks against the liberty
rights. In most cases protection of the minor has taken precedence over the minor's
liberty to engage in high or even moderate risk behavior.
In several countries gay activists are pushing for a lowering of the age of consent for
homosexual sex. In some places it is higher than the age of consent for heterosexual sex.
The question which needs to be addressed is: Does homosexual sexual activity between
adults and adolescents 16 to 18 carry risks sufficient to justify the criminalization of
such behavior? Does such sexual activity carry more risk to the minor than heterosexual
The answer to both questions is yes. The evidence is overwhelming. The following report
summarizes an extensive body of literature which demonstrates conclusively that
criminalizing homosexual activity between adolescents and adults represents a reasonable
public health policy. Many of the article referenced report high rates of multiple
problems associated with homosexual activity for adolescents 16 to 18.
THE RISK OF INFECTION WITH HIV OR OTHER STDS
Epidemiologist estimate that one out of two men who have sex with men will eventually
become HIV positive. (Hessel 1989)(Hoover 1991)( Morris 1994). Men who begin to engage in
sex with men at an earlier age are more likely to seroconvert (become HIV positive) and to
seroconvert earlier. A study of 425 men age 17 to 22 who engaged in sex with men found
that 15.2% of the 79 who began this activity before age 15 and 11.6% of the 224 who
initiated the activity age 15 to 19 were already HIV-positive. (Lemp 1994) The risk of
seroconversion is higher for men under 30.(Osmond 1994)(Remafedi 1994) The older a
homosexually active man is the more likely it is that he will be HIV positive.(Rotello
Adult men who have sex with male adolescents 16 to 18 are more likely to be HIV
positive, because they are more likely to engage in sexual activity in public or
semi-public places, to engage in sexual activity with persons they do not know, to engage
in sex while under the influence of drugs and alcohol, to engage unprotected anal sex, and
to have multiple sexual partners. Those homosexually attracted men who are at low risk for
HIV -- those in long-term committed relationships, those who do not combine drug and
alcohol use with sex, and those whose sexual activity usually involves autoeroticism --
are also less likely to engage in sex with adolescents.
There is no evidence that safe-sex education has significantly reduced the risks.
(Stall 1988) (Kelly 1991)(Gold 1992) While men who have sex with men are more likely to
use condoms than they were in the past, the number of infected men has risen to the point
where an occasional failure to use protections or failure of the protection to work
properly will result in a cumulative infection rate of 50%.(Kelly 1987)
Men currently being infected are more likely to be infected with a strain of the virus
which is resistant to one or more of the drugs used to control the disease. (Little
1999)(Boden 1999) The risk for homosexually active adolescent males is extremely
high.(Goldman 1994) (Brown 1997)(Stiffman 1990) Because contact tracing and other normal
public health measures for preventing the spread of sexually transmitted diseases are not
used to control the spread of HIV, restricting adult/adolescent homosexual activity is a
prudent means of protecting this extremely vulnerable population.
Adolescents who have sex with men are also at risk for other serious and in some cases
potentially fatal diseases, including: Hepatitis A, B, and C, Human Papilloma Virus (which
can cause cancer), Chlamydia (some forms of which have been linked to heart disease),
Syphilis, Gonorrhea, Gay Bowel Syndrome, Herpes (including Herpes 8 which is the cause of
Kaposi's Sarcoma. (Zenliman 1988) Many of these diseases are on the increase. There is
also the risk of injury from unusual sexual practices.
PROSTITUTION AND RUNAWAYS
Adolescent boys 14 to 18 who have sex with men over 21 are frequently runaways or
prostituting themselves for drugs, money, or being kept by the older person. Most male
prostitutes who service men are in this age category. If the age of consent is 18, it is
not necessary to prove an exchange of money only that the prostitute was under age.
Prostitution is psychologically and physically dangerous.(Coleman 1989) (Rotheram-Borus
1992) (Savin-Williams 1994)
The following quote from Kruks (1991) illustrates the vulnerability of adolescents to
"Gay male street youth, as well as nonlesbian female street youths, seem to be
particularly vulnerable for emotional as well as sexual exploitation... The nongay male
street youths engaging in survival sex obviously are looking for little beyond material
sustenance from their 'clients,' who are only very rarely female. But the youths (male and
female) who seek love from males frequently end up in what is known as 'sugar daddy'
"These relationships are often extremely damaging for a number of reasons. The
'sugar daddy' usually presents himself to the youth in a loving caretaker role. For a
street youth who has a past history of rejection and/or abuse, the promise of being loved
and cared for is a compelling one. However, these relationships in many ways have similar
dynamics to incest.
"Many gay youths coming to YSD [Youth Services Dept. of Los Angeles Gay and
Lesbian Community Service Center] for services have long histories of being involved in a
succession of 'sugar daddy' relationships. Each of these is a cycle of falling in love,
believing that life will now be wonderful forever and that this older adult truly loves
the young person, discovering that in fact it is just sex that the adult wants, feeling
the impact of one more betrayal, and ending up on the streets again. The whole cycle last
an average of 1-2 months, and the youth often becomes extremely suicidal at the end of
each cycle." (p.518)
SEXUAL ABUSE AND RAPE
A large percentage of adolescents 14 to 18 who engage with sex with adults have been
victims of sexual abuse as children or rape. (Furnold 1978) (Janus 1984) (Martin 1988)
(Allers 1991) The abuser may have been an adult, family member, or older child. Due to low
self-regard, the victim may not always have recognized the abuse as abuse. A adolescent
who was sexually abused or raped may be especially vulnerable to sexual exploitation by an
SUBSTANCE ABUSE AND HIGH RISK BEHAVIOR
Adolescents who are homosexually active are highly likely to abuse drugs and alcohol.
(Remafedi 1987) (Shifrin 1992) (Rotheram-Borus 1994) (Garafalo 1998) This leads to unsafe
sexual behaviors and risk taking. Adults wishing to engage in homosexual sex with an
adolescent often offer drugs or use substances to lower resistance.
SEX WITH STRANGERS AND SEX IN PUBLIC PLACES
Much of the sexual activity between adolescents and adults takes place in public or
semi-public places, between strangers or people who have met for the first time
immediately before sex. (Roesler 1972) This type of sexual activity carries an extremely
high risk of infection with STD and violence.
COMING OUT ANXIETY AND EMOTIONAL INSTABILITY
Adolescents 14 to 18 experiencing same-sex attractions are in an emotionally vulnerable
position. They feel isolated and confused. In some cases their first sexual relationship
provokes intense emotions. Almost none of these first relationships are permanent and the
adolescent can be left emotionally devastated. Suicide attempts sometimes follow the
breakup of first relationships.(Lock 1998)
A number of gay-affirming therapists have written extensively on the problems
associated with "coming-out" as a homosexual. (Cates 1987) (D'Augelli 1993)
Their analysis suggests that in many cases normal social and emotional development is
delayed and the homosexually attracted young adult responds in ways more appropriate to a
young teenager. This suggests that higher age restrictions represent a reasonable means of
protecting a vulnerable population from exploitation and high risk behavior.
Two new and well designed studies have found that adolescents self-identified as
homosexual are more likely to have suicidal ideation and to attempt suicide than
non-homosexually identified adolescents. (Herrell 1999) (Fergusson 1999) Numerous other
studies have found similar vulnerability (Remafedi 1991) (Hershberger 1995) (Kournay 1987)
These adolescents are already at high risk and need to be protected from adults who would
exploit their vulnerability.
The pederast is a adult male who is attracted to adolescent boys. The adult who is
attracted to adolescents is usually not interested in a permanent relationship, but
expects that the current boy will be replaced with another adolescent. Attraction is to
the age group. Most pederasts are attracted to boys who have not sexually matured - age
12to 15. Keeping the age of consent at 18 prevents the pederast from claiming that he
thought his victim was 16. It is very difficult to confuse an 12 year old with an 18 year
old. While numerous studies have shown the negative effects of adult/child sex (Finkelhor
1993) (Bagley 1994), pederasts and their supporters have argued that adult/adolescent
homosexual activity is not always damaging to the adolescent (Sandfort 1984) (Bauserman
1991) (Rind 1998) and have advocated the lower of the age of consent. (Mirkin 1999)
ADOLESCENTS WHO ARE CONFUSED OR EXPERIMENTING
A substantial number of adolescents who engage in same-activity later decide that they
are not homosexual. Experimentation between peers in one thing, but an adult seducing a
confused or vulnerable adolescent into a homosexual relationship is another. The adult may
try to convince a vulnerable adolescent that he is permanently and unchangeably homosexual
because he is physically aroused by homosexual activity.
REBELLION AGAINST PARENTS
Adolescence is a period of breaking away from parental rules. In some case adolescents
may declare they are homosexual or engage in homosexual behavior as an act of rebellion
(Barnhouse 1977). An adult who encourages this rebellion and then takes advantage of the
adolescent can deepen the already existing problems.
REFERENCES for AGE OF CONSENT
The following articles are referenced in "Age of Consent."
Many of the articles contain a litany of problems associated with adolescent
homosexuality. Rather than repeat the citations over and over, each reference is
associated with just one section.
Allers, C., Benjack, K. (1991) Connections between childhood abuse and
HIV infection. Journal of Counseling Development. 70: 309 -313.
Bagley, C., Wood, M., Young, L.(1994) Victim to abuser: Mental health
and behavioral sequels of child sexual abuse in a community survey of young adult males. Child
Abuse & Neglect.18, 8: 683.
Barnhouse, R. (1977) Homosexuality: A Symbolic Confusion. NY:
Seabury Press, 59 - 61.
Bauserman, R. (1991) Objectivity and ideology: Criticism of Theo
Sandfort's research on man-boy sexual relations. Journal of Homosexuality. 20, 1
& 2: 297 - 312.
Boden, D. et al (1999) HIV-1 drug resistance in newly infected
individuals. Journal of the American Medical Association. 282, 12: 1135 - 1149.
Brown, L., Danovosky, M., Lourie, K., DiClemente, R., Ponton, L. (1997)
Adolescents with psychiatric disorders and the risk of HIV. Journal of the American
Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry. 36, 11: 1609 - 1616.
Cates, J., (1987) Adolescent sexuality: Gay and lesbian issues. Child
Welfare. 66, 4: 353 - 365.
Coleman, E. (1989) The development of male prostitution activity among
gay and bisexual adolescents. Journal of Homosexuality. 17, 1&2: 131 - 149.
D'Augelli, A., Hershberger, S. (1993) Lesbian, gay, and bisexual youth
in community settings: Personal challenges and mental health problems. American Journal
of Community Psychology. 21, 4: 421 - 448.
Fergusson, D. et al (1999) Is Sexual Orientation Related to
Mental Health Problems and Suicidality in Young People? Archives of General Psychiatry.
56, 10: 876 - 880.
Finkelhor, D. et al (1993) A Sourcebook on Child Sexual
Abuse. Newbury Park: Sage.
Furnald, R. (1978) Male juvenile prostitution. Unpublished master's
thesis. Los Angeles, CA: UCLA.
Garofalo, R., Wolf, R., Kessel, S., Palfrey, J., DuRant, R., (1998) The
association between health risk behaviors and sexual orientation among a school-based
sample of adolescents: Youth risk behavior survey. Pediatrics. 101, 5: 895 - 898.
Gold, R., Skinner, (1992) Situational factors and thought processes
associated with unprotected intercourse in young gay men. AIDS. 6: 1021 - 1030.
Goldman, E. (1994) Psychological Factors Generate HIV Resurgence in
Young Gay Men. Clinical Psychiatry News. October 5.
Herrell, R. et al (1999) A Co-twin Control Study in Adult
Men" Archives of General Psychiatry. 56, 10: 867 - 874.
Hershberger, S., D'Augelli, A. (1995) The impact of victimization on
the mental health and suicidality of lesbian, gay, and bisexual youth. Developmental
Psychology. 31, 1: 65 - 74.
Hessol, N., Lifson, A., O'Malley, P., Doll, L., Jaffe, H., Rutherford,
G. (1989) Prevalence, incidence and progression of human immunodeficiency virus infection
in homosexual and bisexual men in hepatitis B vaccine trials, 1978 - 1988. American
Journal of Epidemiology. 130, 6: 1167 - 1175
Hoover, D., Munoz, A., Carey, V., Chmiel, J., Taylor, J., Margolick,
J., Kingsley, L., Vermund, S. (1991) Estimating the 1978 - 1990 and future spread of human
Iimunodeficiency virus type 1 in subgroups of homosexual men. American Journal of
Epidemiology 134, 10: 1190 - 1205
Janus, M., Scanlon, B., Prince, V. (1984) Youth prostitution (in A.W.
Burgess. Sex Rings and Child Pornography. Lexington MA: DC Heath
Kelly, J., St. Lawrence, J. (1987) Letter to the Editor. The Lancet.
Kelly, J., St. Lawrence, J., Brasfield, T. (1991) Predictors of
vulnerability to AIDS risk behavior relapse. Journal of Consulting and Clinical
Psychology 59, 1: 163 - 166.
Kourany, R., (1987) Suicide among homosexual adolescents. Journal of
Homosexuality. 13, 4: 111 - 117.
Kruks, G. (1991) Gay and lesbian homeless/street youth: Special issues
and concerns. Journal of Adolescent Health. 12: 515 -519.
Lemp, G., Hirozawa, A., Givertz, D., Nieri, G., Anderson, L., Linegren,
M., Janssen, R., Katz, M. (1994) Seroprevalence of HIV and risk behaviors among young
homosexual and bisexual men. Journal of the American Medical Association. 272, 6:
449 - 454.
Little, S. et al (1999) Reduced antiretroviral drug
susceptibility among patients with primary HIV infection. Journal of the American
Medical Association. 282, 12: 1142 - 1149.
Lock, J., Kleis, B. (1998) A primer on homophobia for the child and
adolescent psychiatrist. Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent
Psychiatry. 37, 6: 671 - 673.
Martin, A., Hetrick, E. (1988) The stigmatization of the gay and
lesbian adolescent. Journal of Homosexuality. 15 : 163 - 183.
Morris, M., Dean, L. (1994) Effects of sexual behavior change on
long-term human immunodeficiency virus prevalence among homosexual men. American Journal
of Epidemiology. 140, 3: 217 - 32
Mirkin, H. (1999) The pattern of sexual politics: Feminism,
homosexuality and pedophilia. Journal of Homosexuality. 37, 2: 1 - 24.
Osmond, D., Page, K., Wiley, J., Garrett, K., Sheppard, H., Moss, A.,
Schrager, K., Winkelstein, W. (1994) HIV Infection in Homosexual and Bisexual Men 18 to 29
years of age: The San Francisco Young Men's Health Study. American Journal of Public
Health. 84, 12: 1933 - 1937.
Remafedi, G. (1987) Adolescent homosexuality: Psychosocial and medical
implications. Pediatrics. 79, 3: 331 - 337
Remafedi, G., Farrow, J., Deischer, R. (1991) Risk factors for
attempted suicide in gay and bisexual youth. Pediatrics. 87: 869 - 875.
Remafedi, G. (1994). Predictors of unprotected intercourse among gay
and bisexual youth: knowledge, beliefs, and behavior. Pediatrics. 94:163 - 168.
Rind, B., Tromovitch, P., Bauserman, R. (1998) A meta-analytic
examination of assumed properties of child sexual abuse using college samples. Psychological
Bulletin. 124, 1 : 1 - 25.
Roesler, T., Deisher, R. (1972) Youthful male homosexuality: Homosexual
experiences and the process of developing homosexual identity in males aged 16 to 22
years. Journal of the American Medical Association. 219, 8: 1018 - 1023.
Rotello, G. (1997). Sexual Ecology: AIDS and the Destiny of Gay Men.
Rotheram-Borus, M., Meyer-Bahlburg, H., Rosario, M., Koopman, C.,
Haignere, C., Exner, T., Mattieu, M., Henderson, R., Gruen, R. (1992) Lifetime sexual
behaviors among predominantly minority male runaways and gay/bisexual adolescents in New
York City. Aids Education and Prevention, Supplement. Fall: 34 - 42.
Rotheram-Borus, M., Rosario, M., Meyer-Bahlburg, H., Koopman, C.,
Dopkins, S., Davies, M. (1994) Sexual and substance use acts of gay and bisexual male
adolescents in New York City. Journal of Sex Research. 31, 1: 47 - 57.
Sandfort, T. (1984) Sex in pedophiliac relationships: An empirical
investigation among a non-representative group of boys. Journal of Sex Research.
20, 2:123 -142.
Savin-Williams, R. (1994) Verbal and physical abuse as stressors in the
lives of lesbian, gay male, and bisexual youths: Associations with school problems,
running away, substance abuse, prostitution, and suicide. Journal of Consulting and
Clinical Psychology. 62, 2: 261 - 269.
Shifrin, F., Solis, M. (1992) Chemical dependency in gay and lesbian
youth. Journal of Chemical Dependency Treatment. 5, 1: 67-76
Stall, R., Coates, T., Hoff, C. (1988) Behavioral risk reduction for
HIV infection among gay and bisexual men. American Psychologist. 43, 11: 878 - 885.
Stiffman, A., Earls, F. (1990) Behavioral risk for human
immunodeficiency virus infection in adolescent medical patients. Pediatrics. 85, 3:
303 - 310.
Zenilman, J. (1988) Sexually transmitted diseases in homosexual
adolescents. Journal of Adolescent Health Care. 9: 129 - 138.
8. SPEAKING THE TRUTH WITH LOVE
Cardinal Francis George, the Catholic archbishop of Chicago, chose in spite of pleas
from pro-family Catholics, to address the National Association of Catholic Diocesan
Lesbian & Gay Ministries, which met in his archdiocese in October. According to
published reports, he then surprised his audience by his unqualified support of the
Christian teaching on sexuality: "Church's teaching, the teaching of Jesus Christ,
from Divine Revelation [is that] the gift of human sexuality is oriented toward uniting a
man and woman in marriage for life, for their own unity in Christ , and for the giving of
new life to children." "That teaching," he said, "will not change
because it cannot change, based as it is in faith and in human nature itself."
"To deny that the power of God's grace enables homosexuals to live chastely is to
deny, effectively, that Jesus has risen from the dead."
The courage of Cardinal George and the recent meeting between gay activists and the
Rev. Jerry Falwell represent an authentically Christian approach to the problem. Hopeful
these actions will encourage other religious leaders to speak the truth with love.
9. ATTACK ON EX-GAY MINISTRIES
I was asked to comment on the paper "Why reparative therapy and ex-gay ministries
fail" by Kim Mills, Education Director of the Human Rights Campaign (Aug. 1998). Ms.
Mills' report was written as a response to the highly successful ad campaign featuring men
and women who have come out of homosexuality. Although Mills quotes a number of sources
which say that it impossible to come out of homosexuality, the existence of people who
have proves that these sources are incorrect. (Those who would like to reviewed the
massive, documented evidence of change will find a list of some of the studies in the
files marked "Change" on Dale's Disk.) The errors in this piece go far beyond
Mills attacks the consistent teaching of scripture, as held by Jews and Christians for
over 3,000 years, namely that all sexual activity outside marriage, including adultery,
fornication, incest, and homosexuality, is contrary to God's law. She writes: "These
organizations [ex-gay ministries] selectively cite the Bible as proof that homosexuality
is a sin." In fact, ex-gay ministries hold that homosexual acts are sinful, because
the scriptures allow no other conclusion.
That said, believers have only two options to live celibately or to seek healing. It is
the duty of the Church to offer its prayers and support to all those struggling with
sexual temptations. Mills reviews the sad history of those who sought healing and then
fell back into homosexual behavior. If programs which offer help are not as successful as
they should be, then the Church needs to pray harder and to work harder to find approaches
which are more likely to be successful. As the existing programs mature, we are seeing
more people achieve freedom. No self-help or 12 step program can promise that everyone who
comes to them will persevere. Contrary to Mills' contention a number of the studies on
treatment include follow-up information and document change of attraction pattern not just
Mills information is out of date. She quotes Fr. Harvey, founder of Courage, as
believing that change is impossible. It is true that when he began his ministry to
homosexually tempted persons, Fr. Harvey did not want to promote a false hope or encourage
quick marriage. Freedom from sinful behavior was a sufficient goal. Over the years, Fr.
Harvey has recognized that many of the members of Courage want to achieve the freedom to
marry. Courage now supports those whose goal is complete freedom from homosexual desires,
not just freedom from homosexual behavior.
Those who wish to explore the possibility of change because they wish to marry and have
children or because they wish to avoid contracting one of the infectious diseases spread
by homosexual contact among men, have a right to know about and receive mental health
care. Believers have a right to mental health care which respects their religious
Last month I had the pleasure of attending Regeneration's 20 anniversary dinner.
Regeneration is a ministry bringing healing to homosexuals and others suffering from
sexual brokenness in the Baltimore MD area. The next day I spoke at the Day Seven
Ministries conference in Pennsylvania, on the absolute necessity of forgiveness.
I was blessed to see that how many of those who have come out of homosexuality have
achieved stability and maturity. Their witness is essential in the battles that are ahead.
They need our unfailing support and our prayers. I have found that I can give people all
the facts, but when they meet someone who has come out of homosexuality, they finally
10. REAL MISINFORMATION
Review of Real Boys: Rescuing Our Sons from the Myths of Boyhood, by William
Pollack (1999) NY: Holt.
This book, which has made the NY Times best seller list, is one of those by a liberal
who has discovered the obvious -- namely that boys are different from girls. This insight
might be welcomed were it not accompanied by a chapter on homosexuality which is
Chapter 9 "Being 'Different': Being Gay" repeats the false information
routinely disseminated by gay activists and references discredited studies. For example
Pollack writes: "being gay is not something that mental health
professionals should attempt to change (or that they can change)." Notice that
the "should" is placed before the "can". The fact is that therapy to
deal with homosexual attractions can be successful, and young boys and their parents have
a right to know this.
After rejecting the overwhelming evidence of the effect of early childhood experiences
in the formation of same-sex attraction, Pollack references the discredited 1953 study of
identical twins by Kallman. Kallman reported that 100% of the identical twin males he
studied were concordant for sexual orientation. A number of studies since then, studies
which Pollack should be aware of, found that identical twins are often discordant for
sexual orientation and Kallman later admitted his study wasn't statistically projectable.
After encouraging parents to accept their son's homosexuality, Pollack then goes on to
discuss the risks of AIDS and push for more sex education. Studies on the efficacy of
education aimed at encouraging men who have sex with men to use "precautions"
has determined that, in spite of almost universal knowledge of the ways to avoid
infection, for the foreseeable future 50% of men who have sex with men will become HIV
Pollack arrogantly disseminates false information and in doing so puts the boys at
[The references which refute Pollack can be found on
Dale's Disk in the files labeled:
CHILD, and GENETIC.
|The Massachusetts News reported June 14,
Research of Harvard Psychologist Seriously Flawed,
Students at Belmont Hill School Thought It Was a Farce
The research that made Harvard psychologist William Pollack a famous expert on American
boys and frightened American parents and educators is seriously flawed, if not fraudulent,
according to people familiar with the study. It became the basis of Pollacks
bestseller, "c." ...
Full text of that article and links
to many related ones
11. AMERICAN BISHOPS SUPPORT VATICAN ACTION
CLEAR AND CONSTANT TEACHING
On July 13, 1999, Cardinal Ratzinger's office, with the approval of John Paul II,
issued a notification that is extremely important to all those struggling to promote the
truth about homosexual acts and inclinations. The notification states:
"...the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith is obliged to declare for the
good of the Catholic faithful that the positions advanced by Sister Jeannine Gramick and
Father Robert Nugent regarding the intrinsic evil of homosexual acts and the objective
disorder of the homosexual inclination are doctrinally unacceptable because they do not
faithfully convey the clear and constant teaching of the Catholic Church in this
The notification reviews the unsuccessful attempts by church leaders to obtain from these
two individuals interior assent to the authentic teachings on homosexuality. Nugent and
Gramick claim to be treating homosexual persons "with respect, compassion and
sensitivity", but the notification points out that,
"... the promotion of errors and ambiguities is not consistent with a Christian
attitude of true respect and compassion. Persons who are struggling with homosexuality, no
less than any others, have the right to receive the authentic teaching of the church from
those who minister to them."
During the recent meeting of the American bishops, supporters of Nugent and Gramick held a
press conference and presented a petition signed by 4,500 Catholic religious and 50
religious congregations calling on the American bishops to ask the Vatican to reconsider
the notification. Bishop Fiorenza of Galveston-Houston issued a 4 page response in the
name of the full body of bishops defending the notification.
THE APPLICATION OF THE NOTIFICATION TO ALL IN MINISTRY
What applies to Nugent and Gramick must logically apply to all those engaged in
ministry to homosexually tempted persons, all those who teach theology in Catholic schools
at any level, and all those who teach on issues involving marriage and sexuality.
Therefore, Catholics have the right to ask that all in such positions give interior assent
to the following:
1) Homosexual acts are intrinsically evil and can never be approved.
2) Homosexual inclination while not a sin is a tendency ordered toward an intrinsic
moral evil, and thus the inclination itself must be seen as an objective disorder.
3) This teaching is unchangeable.
It may be that some of those who support Nugent and Gramick do so because they believe the
gay activist propaganda that homosexual attraction is genetically determined and
unchangeable. The teaching authority of the church has not taken a position on the causes
or treatment of homosexual inclination, since regardless of the cause or potential for
change all persons are called to live chastity according to their state in life. However,
those who question the clear and unchangeable teaching on this matter may be helped toward
acceptance by being exposed to the substantial and credible evidence that homosexual
attractions are rooted in childhood experiences and can be prevented and treated.
The effect of the notification and the support given it by the American bishops spreads
beyond Catholic schools and ministries. Public schools may not discriminate on the basis
of religious belief. In a number of areas of this country, school boards have adopted
policies condemning discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation. These policies are
sometimes implemented in a manner that discriminates against students who hold orthodox
The gay activists hold that homosexual acts and homosexual relationships are in every
way equal to those between men and women and that to deny this is to be guilty of anti-gay
bigotry, bias, invidious discrimination, homophobia, and/or heterosexism. The notification
of July 13 makes it clear that religious freedom requires that students not only be
allowed to hold the belief that homosexual acts are intrinsically evil and homosexual
inclination an objective disorder and that this teaching is unchangeable, but that they
also be allowed to voice this opinion in public without fear of retribution of any kind.
This, of course, doesn't in any way justify verbal abuse or violence against homosexually
The gay activists argue that the mere voicing of such beliefs causes emotional damage
to homosexually attracted students and faculty and they are undoubtedly correct. Being
confronted with the teaching that one's behavior is sinful is never a pleasant experience,
but freedom of religious includes the right of religious groups to articulate and promote
their understanding of the moral law. If the schools choose to embark on an open
discussion of the question of the morality of homosexual acts, they cannot exclude one
side on the grounds that it is religious and then promote a moral view that demeans the
religious beliefs of the students.
Furthermore, a number of other religions, agree in whole or in part with the Catholic
teaching on homosexuality. Therefore, any educational program which demeans these beliefs
constitutes a threat to the religious freedom of the students and cannot be tolerated.
Freedom of religion is one of the most precious human rights, protected by national
constitutions and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Parents and those groups who
defend religious freedom need to vigilantly monitor educational institutions and other
government-run institutions to assure that freedom of religion in this area is protected.
Bishop Fiorenza's statement is available at: www.nccbuscc.org.
Courage, the authentic Catholic ministry to homosexuals also has a statement on the
12. BOY SCOUTS
The Boy Scouts will undoubtedly appeal the ruling of the New Jersey court, which denied
the organization the right to define the meaning of their own oath and set standards for
membership. According to Judge Handler's concurring opinion, the NJ decision is based on a
desire to eliminate discrimination. He writes: "One particular stereotype that we
renounce today is that homosexuals are inherently immoral." According to the judge
"Such stereotypes, baseless assumptions, and unsupported generalizations reflecting a
discredited view of homosexuality as criminal, immoral and improper are discordant with
current law and public policy. Accordingly, they cannot serve to define contemporary
social mores and morality."
While having homosexual inclinations is not in itself immoral, engaging in homosexual
acts is. The NJ courts do not have the right to decide what is or is not moral. Their
attempt to do so is a direct attack on freedom of religion. I would be happy to help
anyone working on a brief in favor of the Boy Scouts and hope that many religious
organizations will do so.
However, briefs are not enough, we need to educate the public on the impact of the
decision on religious freedom -- religious freedom must include the right to say that
homosexual acts are intrinsically evil, the homosexual inclination is objectively
disordered, and this teaching will not change, to do so publicly, and to base policy
decisions on this belief.
Other arguments can also be made. For example, a review of the research on
self-identified "gay" adolescent boys produces substantial evidence that these
boys are at high risk for a number of problems (suicide substance abuse, disease, conduct
disorders) . Membership in the Boy Scouts by openly "gay" boys would probably
not in the best interests of the boys. They need professional help -- help the ordinary
troop leader cannot provide.
13. FREEDOM OF RELIGION THREATENED
According to a story by Frank York, World Net Daily, the leaders of the Council of
Religious Leaders of Metropolitan Chicago sent a letter to Paige Patterson, head of the
Southern Baptist Convention expressing concern that evangelistic efforts associated with
the planned Southern Baptist convention in Chicago next summer might spark violence and
Bishop Joseph Sprague of the United Methodist Church's Northern Illinois Conference
worries that preaching against homosexuality "creates a climate in which hate can
fester." According to a 1998 report from the Women's Division of the United Methodist
Church: "An example of giving societal permission to engage in violence against gay
and lesbian people is the recent media campaign with the misleading slogans of 'Truth in
Love' and 'Hope not Hate.' Such slick campaigns, though couched in seemingly kind and
Christian words, promote bigotry."
Besides vigorously defending freedom of religion, I think we also need to do some
research on anti-homosexual violence. According to a report by the National Coalition of
Anti-Violence Programs, in the U.S. in1998, 2,552 were identified as anti-homosexual, of
these 110 required inpatient hospitalization. (New York Times 7 April 1999) I have seen a
few anecdotes which suggest that such violence is committed by young men who have a
history of sexual molestation by males, substance abuse, violence, and general anti-social
behavior. In other words, these do not appear to be young men who have spent a great deal
of time in Church or who are influenced by religious messages. In some cases homosexual
men are seen as easy prey for robbers because they are willing to accompany a total
stranger into a secluded place. For example, in Lincoln RI a man well-known to the
bar-going homosexual community was found murdered in his home. He had spent the evening
drinking in a bar and police speculate that someone he took home murdered him.
Someone needs to review the records of "anti-homosexual" violence and
interview the incarcerated perpetrators, since a next year will undoubtedly see another
push for "hate crime" legislation.