October 11 was National Coming Out Day, and on October 23 Talon Talks hosted a debate on the University of Texas at Tyler campus between Professor Lopez and Father Key concerning the issue of gay marriage.
Lopez, my Constitutional Development professor from last semester, went about the argument by separating his Catholicism from his ideas about how to form a civil society.
He recognized that the 14th Amendment to the Constitution ensures equal treatment under the law. It doesn’t matter if the religious recognize their marriage, but the government is required by the text of the Bill of Rights to do so.
Key insisted God condemns homosexuality, and as we are, according to him, a Christian nation we must condemn it in kind. He claimed no society has ever accepted homosexuality (untrue by the way), and that all societies that have accepted it have been destroyed — an interesting contradiction.
Why is this even such a big deal in our culture? You have to go back a few thousand years to the founding of the Abrahamic religions: Judaism, Christianity, and Islam.
I’ll focus on Christian scriptures since Christianity is dominant here in the U.S. The Abrahamic religions are not particularly fond of sex.
Matter of fact, there is quite a lot distaste towards it, as if it were something about which you should be ashamed.
In particular there is animus toward female sexuality and just as much animus toward anything other than heterosexuality.
These ideas are born of an era of ignorance in one of the most illiterate and backward parts of the world.
Women were coveted property; hence the injunctions against their sexuality where a woman was stoned if found not to be a virgin by her husband on their wedding night (Deuteronomy 22:20).
Additionally, there was the law that, if a woman was raped, the father must be paid, and she must marry her rapist who may never divorce her (Deuteronomy 22:29).
Just as well, there was the command supposedly handed down by God that, after you committed mass murder, keep the virgins for yourselves (Numbers 31:18).
The Bible doesn’t expressly say what they did with them, but I think I know what they had in mind. I doubt it was for moral purposes.
I mention all this to give a context. This is where we are supposed to derive our morality concerning sex? That is an obscene suggestion.
Why would we treat a verse condemning homosexuality as a capital crime any more seriously than the rest? I have yet to see a single Christian father stoning his daughter for her “crimes”.
Tea Party candidate from Oklahoma Scott Esk said,”I never said I would author legislation to put homosexuals to death, but I didn’t have a problem with it.” (We all know these aren’t the principles of the Tea Party. That’s just how he ran.)
It’s obvious that the majority of Christians do not call for the death of homosexuals. Some merely want their rights limited, and others are very accepting.
Those accepting, forward-thinking Christians receive my commendation.
As to the rest who spout hate, fear and guilt, terrifying people, worst of all children, with the thought of Hell (a wicked falsification), you should be thankful that place does not exist for you.
Why would we go to a verse like Leviticus 20:13 to determine what is moral on the subject of homosexuality when we can use our own internal moral sense?
It defies our civil republic to concern ourselves with the private lives of others. What consenting adults do in the privacy of their home that causes no physical or fiscal harm to others ought not be the concern of anyone else.
Take a moment to separate morality from religion. What is moral? A moral action is an action that promotes the well-being of conscious creatures, and an immoral action does the opposite. This can be determined by reading The Republic, the works of Aristotle (quote number two sums it up nicely), and the works of Sam Harris.
How can we lash out at our fellow human beings solely for their nature? Does that maximize well-being? How can we tell them that they can’t be a member of the church because of the “sin” with which they were born?
Homosexuals are not being condemned for what they do but what they are. “We’re all children made in the image of God, and we should all love one another. Well except you.” They are told they are not welcome in church, and they can’t go to heaven.
This hatred disgusts me.
It is after all in their nature.
According to an article in Yale Scientific, homosexual behavior has been observed “…in more than 10% of prevailing species throughout the world.”
The New Mexico Whiptail Lizard is very interesting. It is a species entirely consisting of females. They survive by parthenogenesis. Basically, it’s a lesbian lizard that can reproduce, and you want to tell me that an occasional, naturally occurring abnormal sexual attraction in humans is out of the question?
“Homosexuality is not just a form of sex; it is a form of love, and it deserves our respect for that reason,” said author Christopher Hitchens. Why is it that we can’t look past something truly as trivial as a person’s sexual preference and simply accept them?
In actress Raven Symone’s recent interview with Oprah she expressed that she didn’t want to be labeled gay or much of anything else for that matter. She considers herself human and American.
That is beautiful. Someone willing to say, “I am a human who loves humans…” That is how we all should be, and we should stop looking to our ancient barbarian ancestors and instead look in our hearts and to our reason for what is moral.
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A version of this article first appeared on Patriot Talon.