Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Finding the Unexpected

Blog Ally Boi from Troy made a wonderfully Wonkette-esque post today about James Dobson's, dba Focus on the Family, latest attempt to demonstrate confusion between gender, sexual, and biological orientations.

Expecting more entertainment from the topics listed on the right sidebar ("Change of Sexual Orientation Is Possible", "How to Prevent Homosexuality"), I clicked through them -- and was quite frankly floored.


Homosexuality is rarely “chosen.” It’s unfair to tell a homosexual individual that he or she chose that lifestyle to pursue sexual excitement or some other motive. After all, Dr. Dobson says, “who among us would knowingly choose a path that would result in alienation from family, rejection from friends, disdain from the heterosexual world, exposure to sexually transmitted diseases such as AIDS and tuberculosis, and even a shorter lifespan?”

No evidence indicates that homosexuality is inherited. This is true despite the beliefs of 35 percent of America adults, who heard or read highly publicized mainstream media claims to the contrary, especially in the early 1990s. Dr. Dobson notes, “There are no respected geneticists in the world today who claim to have found a so-called ‘gay gene’ or other indicators of genetic transmission.”

Or this:

Most homosexuals are not pedophiles. But there is a vigorous homosexual-led campaign now under way to end the taboo.

The more you read through this, the more Dobson's worldview becomes comprehensible. First, he believes that homosexuality is a behavioral disorder brought about by involuntary childhood sexual exploitation. This is why he promotes reparative therapy; if homosexuality is a behavioral disorder, it is expected that it would respond to therapy in a fashion similar to other behavioral disorders.

The second portion is a bit odder -- namely, that these selfsame disordered individuals have the desire to sexually exploit children, which apparently would then perpetuate more homosexuality. To his credit, he admits that not all gays are pedophiles; however, he follows that up with an argument that the actions of "pro-homosexual" groups to lower the age of consent somehow implies that we are.

The danger in this is that, while all of Dobson's proofs are, upon examination, spurious to the point of being laughable, he has a great deal of prima facie evidence that supports his conclusions. If one looks at the history of NAMBLA, it wasn't too long ago that they were an accepted part of the gay rights movement and umbrella gay movements. National and international gay organizations HAVE demanded the removal of age-of-consent laws and passed resolutions to that effect. Indeed, it could be argued that the effects of pedophilia that bothered gays apparently had more to do with losing elections than it did with the exploitation of children.

Furthermore, the practices of the "gay community" now add further fuel to the fire. In the case of Matthew Limon, for instance, who was sentenced harshly for having sex with an underage minor (after two previous convictions for exactly the same thing), "gay rights" groups argued that his sentence was "unfair" because it wouldn't have been as harsh had it been heterosexual sex and because it was "consensual".

The sheer lunacy of both arguments should be obvious. In the case of the latter, if children can consent to sex, there are thousands of pedophiles in this country who need to appeal their sentences. Relative to the former, apparently the fact was lost on the community that the man was a repeat sex offender under Kansas law. That the allegation that the state's "Romeo and Juliet" statute, meant to prevent young lovers from being arrested willy-nilly, should be used to argue against a harsh sentence for someone behaving in the fashion of a sexual predator makes gays look like fools -- or like we're conniving to legalize unrestricted sex among and with minors.

Aside from the blatant, what else do gays do? Oppose as "a gay issue" parental notification laws that say sexually-active teens who want abortions should be required to have the same level of parental notification and consent for the abortion that they would need to have their ears pierced or to get a Tylenol from the school nurse. Loudly scream about the awfulness of teaching teens to abstain from sex until they're older. Finally -- my personal favorite -- proclaim undying love and support for the ACLU as they try to get NAMBLA off the hook for promoting pedophilia.

Dobson's arguments are at best flimsy and at most flat-out false. However, when your opponents keep shooting themselves in the foot, you don't HAVE to have good arguments to win.

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