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Debate: Homosexuality

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Homosexuality has been linked to various adverse conditions. While any society should protect the personal freedoms of its citizens, there is always a point at which liberty must be curtailed to protect the society as a whole. Homosexuality has been linked to various adverse conditions. While any society should protect the personal freedoms of its citizens, there is always a point at which liberty must be curtailed to protect the society as a whole.
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Revision as of 19:09, 21 January 2008

Is homosexuality right or wrong?



Background and Context of Debate:

Judgement: Should other individuals be able to judge?


Homosexuality has been linked to various adverse conditions. While any society should protect the personal freedoms of its citizens, there is always a point at which liberty must be curtailed to protect the society as a whole.


Homosexuality is not wrong in that it should not be judged by others. Homosexuality may in fact be wrong in they eyes of a particular dogmatic sects, but this in know way implies that the act is necessarily wrong and should not be judged by man. Whether or not homosexuality is wrong in other areas such as in the context of religious beliefs is completely another debate and should not be considered in this context.

Nature vs. nurture? Is homosexuality natural or a social phenomena?


  • Homosexuality is a natural phenomenon that can also be found in the animal kingdom Scott Bidstrup "Gay Marriage: the Arguments and the Motives" 2004 - "Among the approximately 1500 animal species whose behavior has been extensively studied, homosexual behavior in animals has been described in at least 450 of those species. It runs the gamut, too, ranging from occasional displays of affection to life-long pair bonding including sex and even adopting and raising orphans, going so far as the rejection by force of potential heterosexual partners, even when in heat. The reality is that it is so common that it begs an explanation, and sociobiologists have proposed a wide variety of explanations to account for it. The fact that it is so common also means that it clearly has evolutionary significance, which applies as much to humans as it does to other animal species."


  • Psychiatric and medical illnesses accompany homosexuality Dr. Rick Fitzgibbons of Catholic Medical Association 7/20/05 - "The [American Psychiatric Association] has chosen to ignore the significant medical research which has documented serious psychiatric and medical illnesses associated with those same-sex attractions and behaviors. This research and that on the needs of children for a father and a mother have been reviewed in several important recent papers from the University of South Carolina School of Medicine and the University of Utah School of Medicine...Well-designed research studies have shown that many psychiatric disorders are far more prevalent, three to five times, in teen-agers and adults with same-sex attraction [SSA]. These include major depression, suicidal ideation and attempts, anxiety disorders, substance abuse, conduct disorder, low self-esteem in males and sexual promiscuity with an inability to maintain committed relationships. It is important to note that 'homophobia' is not the cause of these disorders, as many of these studies were done in cultures in which homosexuality is widely accepted. Another recent study has shown that a high percentage, 32%, of males with SSA have been abused by other males with SSA." [find studies]

Religion: Does homosexuality check out on religious grounds?


  • American Constitutional principles of the Separation of Church and State and the First Amendment would disallow any projection of religious moral belief onto constitutional law through a ban on gay-marriage:
    • The Economist "The case for gay marriage" 2/26/04 - "It is no business of the state to impose a religious choice. Indeed, in America the constitution expressly bans the involvement of the state in religious matters, so it would be especially outrageous if the constitution were now to be used for religious ends [that aim to ban gay marriage]."
  • Civil marriages don't interfere with religious doctrine and a Church's freedom to deny its own marriage services to gays:
    • Debatabase - "Gay couples should be allowed the option to undergo civil marriages; this does not entail any religious ceremonies and ought to be acceptable to those who object to gay marriages on the grounds of their religious beliefs."
  • Biblical passages that are claimed by anti-gay believers to condemn homosexuality are being misinterpreted by these groups. **Rev. Jonathan Loppnow and Rev. Paul C. Evans "Same Gender Sexual Behavior and the Scriptures" 1/7/98 - "Contrary to what many people have been taught, there is nothing in the Bible which condemns people with a homosexual orientation having same gender relationships. In fact, did you know the word 'homosexual' does not occur in the Bible at all in the original languages it was written in? This publication is called 'Same Gender Sexual Behavior and the Scriptures' because the scriptural texts considered only deal with sexual behavior not with homosexual sexuality as a whole or homosexual orientation."
  • Legalized gay marriage will not impede on churches' independent ability to not marry gays. **Gay and Lesbian Advocates and Defenders - "A major myth about ending discrimination in civil marriage is that it will somehow compel religious faiths to change their doctrine or practices about who they marry. This is flatly incorrect. We have freedom of religion in this country. When a court or legislature ends discrimination in civil (governmental) marriage, there is no compulsory impact on any faith. Each faith is-and will remain-free to define its own requirements for its marriage rite: who, what, when, where and why. Some people say marriage is a sacrament. And it is for some religious faiths. But the government is not in the sacrament business. The only 'marriage' to which the couples in the Massachusetts case are seeking access is civil/governmental marriage. Governmental marriage already exists side by side with each faith's different rules for their religious rite of marriage. Nothing can change that."
  • Many faiths and branches of faiths welcome homosexuality.
    • Buddhism has many sects that celebrate gay relationships freely and encourage legal marriages.[1]
    • At the 1996 Unitarian Universalist General Assembly, delegates voted overwhelmingly that because of "the inherent worth and dignity of every person", same-sex couples should have the same freedom to marry as other couples.[2]
    • America's Reform Jewish rabbis gave their formal, theological blessing on same-sex marriage in 2000.[3]
    • Jews in general - "As the most liberal group of whites in America, Jews already support laws protecting homosexuals from discrimination in housing, employment, and other aspects of public life."
  • Dutch clergy made a massive shift toward overwhelmingly favoring its national gay marriage laws: A survey conducted in 1989 when the Danish government legalized gay marriage revealed that 72% of Danish clergy were opposed to the law. A survey conducted in 1995 indicated that 89 percent of the Danish clergy now admit that the law is a good one and has had many beneficial effects.[4]


Biblical passages advanced as condemning homosexuality:

  • Genesis 19:5[5] Many interpret this passage as citing homosexual behavior which allegedly contributed to the destruction of ancient cities Sodom and Gomorrah. This story became the source of the word sodomy. Ben Witherington III "Was Sodom into Sodomy?" - "The verb yada 'to know' is used to mean sexual sharing in the Sodom story [opposed to meaning 'to know' in a social sense], when Lot offers his daughters for them 'to know' (i.e. have sexual intercourse with). It's probable that it means the same thing earlier, when the citizens of Sodom ask Lot to bring out his guests so they may 'know' them. Lot accuses them of acting wickedly--an odd charge if all they meant is that they wanted to interrogate them to discover if they were spies. The biblical echoes of the Sodom story, furthermore, all clearly refer to sexual sin. Jeremiah 49:18 criticizes Jerusalem for its sexual sin, and says it is like Sodom. Ezekiel 16:49 is sometimes cited to prove that the sin of Sodom was only inhospitality. But the next verse says the residents of Sodom were destroyed because they did 'abominable things before me.' Abominable, is the very term Lev. 18:22 and 20:13 uses to criticize homosexual intercourse."
  • Leviticus 18:22 - "You shall not lie with a male as with a woman; this is an abomination".[6].
  • First Corinthians 6:8-10.[7]
  • Romans 1 Verse 27b - "Men committed shameless acts with men and received in their own persons the due penalty for their sin."[8]
  • Paul - verses and interpretations that sodomy is wrong - verse 26 - "they have exchanged the natural use for that which is contrary to nature." - Ben Witherington III cites this as an illustration of a biblical rebuke of sodomy.

Sodomy and health: Is homosexual sodomy OK health-wise?



Sexual culture: Is the sexual culture surrounding homosexuality OK?



Argument that homosexuals exibit "rampant promiscuity" and an "inability to maintain committed relationships: Dr. Rick Fitzgibbons of Catholic Medical Association 7/20/05 - "The peer-reviewed literature demonstrates that an inability to maintain committed relationships and rampant promiscuity are the norm in the homosexual lifestyle. To illustrate this, one recent study in Amsterdam, by Xiridou, demonstrated that 86% of the new cases of AIDS came from those in committed relationships, and that those in casual relationships averaged between 16-28 sexual partners per year."


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