Thursday, June 01, 2006

Maybe we're creating the problem

I'm having a discussion on the blog about homosexuality... and the point I'm trying to make deserves its own post:

What if you (and society) taught your kids that long-term, male-female relationships aren't normal… and  what if society didn't provide a social structure that honored those relationships. What if those relationships had to be hidden – kept out of sight in everyday experience. What if they had to be denied to family and friends. What effect do you think that would have on such relationships?

More promiscuity? More self-doubt and even self-loathing (as exemplified by many younger gay people)? Suicide? (I personally know a gay man who contemplated suicide in his early twenties because he thought his 'urges' meant his life was ruined). Maybe a flamboyant "in your face" kind of attitude too...

The other blogger points out that the homosexual "lifestyle" isn't really compatible with raising a family. But why isn't it? (If that's true.) How do we expect homosexuals to form lasting, monogamous relationships when society and the people around them tell them they can't/won't form a real relationship?

People don't see it, but its the lack of acceptance that's part of the problem. By paying lip service to homosexuals (I don't dislike them), but still segregating "them" you are perpetuating the situation.


12 comments:

bombsoverbaghdad said...

The problem is your asking people to approve of relationships that have heretofor, in the whole of human history, been condemned. Throughout history, incest and homosexuality have always been condemned. I'm talking about in tribes in Hawaii, not just by the Catholic Church.

Gotta run. Will check back tonight.

Intellectual Insurgent said...

The "whole of human history" condoned slavery. It's in the Bible. Does that mean it is okay to enslave people since history (this amorphous arbiter of moral values) has always supported the master?

Reign of Reason said...

Hey BoB, you are right, but II beat me to the punch.

yes -- its gonna take some re-education on our part. But if we stick to logic (asking "hey, why do I care what consenting adults do?) we can come to the realization that in a free society government has no business regulating interpersonal relationships.

mrsleep said...

All I can add to this is "live and let live". I don't like anyone who overtly displays there lifestyle, be it hetero, homo, animal, mineral, etc. If you can maintain a relatively low profile, I can deal with it. If you are "in my face" about your choices, then I have a serious problem with it.

I was damn near scarred for life, when I was 16 years old, and going on my first big date, "the Junior Prom", in San Francisco. This was back in 1972. I was driving to the Restaurant for Dinner, and say two 45 - 50ish men in the back seat of a taxi cab "necking". I damn near gagged.

Do I consider same sex relationships "normal"? No. Do I believe we should accept this? Yes. Do I think we should celebrate it? No. If they are happy, and contributing members of society, great. Do I support same sex marriage? I must admit I have a problem with it, but I haven't quite worked out why? Do I support Civil Unions. Yes. How I fully rationalized all the different legal ramifications? No.

Have I really added to the converstation? Probably not.

Reign of Reason said...

I understand people being freaked out... I was when I was in college, but since making gay friends 99% of it has gone away.

Like all prejudice, it fades when you put a face to the stereotype.

Odysseus said...

In the great Greek civilisation, homosexual relationships were quite common and accepted as normal. Just ask someone who's taken a philosophy class. And the Catholic church must be for homosexuality, especially if it involves a preist and choirboys, because they have actively abetted and protected perpetrators of what the rest of civilization calls abuse.

Reign of Reason said...

Good point O... But once Christianity -- or I should say organized christian religion got involved, homosexual relationships were demonized.

However, it does demonstrate the power of social pressure. Like I mentioned, I know gay people that had a very hard time dealing with their sexuality as adolescents – to a point of considering suicide. What an unnecessary stressor. Religion has been society’s “best” weapon for controlling the behavior of its citizens. When coupled with law, it becomes tyrannical.

Unfortunately we have a lot of politicians in this country that would like to follow that model.

bombsoverbaghdad said...

I can believe that being gay must be a very difficult feeling. There must be a tremendous amount of guilt, and I have compassion for that. I'm not saying it's not OK to be gay. I'm saying that as a society, we have to have certain basic standards, and men marrying men doesn't comport with MINE. Others are free to disagree, as I used to support gay marriage.

I'm with Mr. Sleep. It's kinda hard to explain . . .

Reign of Reason said...

I understand your personal aversion... And I now gay people I know have a problem with personal feelings on the issue. It's when someone takes those "feelings" and tries to give them the force of law (or fails to address laws that discriminate).

Just Ask said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Just Ask said...

I whole heartedly agree with your sentiments and have wondered similar things for a long time. It's interesting that bombsoverbaghdad mentioned tribes in Hawaii, of all places. It's been a long time, so don't quote me here where it came from, but I believe it was an "In the Life" episode on PBS way back in 1998 or so, where they talked about homosexuality in different cultures. Back then, Hawaii was working on becoming the first state to amend its consititution to ban homosexual marriage, after the courts initially cleared it as legal (it was the first state to do so, well before the much more publicized MA affair.) Anyhow, Hawaii was an interesting subject, because according to this special, I guess native hawaiian culture approved of homosexuality, and even thought homosexuals had a special, unique place in society. I wish I had the original source, but I guess what I'm trying to say here is that to blindly believe that in every culture and every society throughout the whole human of human history condemned homosexual is a pretty bold, and probably inaccurate statement.

Reign of Reason said...

JA - as you point out, cultural bias is powerful -- some societies revere those that others burn at the stake.

Again: if we can just get past the "personal likes/dislikes" thing and base our law on protecting our rights we'd be on the correct road.