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Homosexuality

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Worldwide laws on homosexuality

Homosexuality is sexual attraction and activity between members of the same gender. Christians, Jews and Muslims almost universally view homosexual behavior as immoral or a sin. The issue of whether same-sex couples should be permitted to marry legally and therein afforded the same social benefits and protections has become a political focal point.

Contents

Morality

Views on the morality of homosexuality:

  • Homosexuality as fundamentally immoral: The Christian belief that God forbids homosexuality, and that homosexual activity violates His laws;
  • Homosexuality as tragic perversion: the belief that homosexuality is a perversion of the human identity and soul, so that it ought to inspire neither hatred nor acceptance, but pity;
  • Homosexuality as a disease: a common stance, implying that it is not a choice but rather an inborn "mutation";
  • Homosexuality as equally valid alternative: the belief that homosexuality is simply another perfectly natural sexual orientation to which certain individuals are predisposed often without possibility of choice;
  • Homosexuality as superior to heterosexuality: the belief that homosexuality is the truest expression of human sexuality, and that heterosexuality is inferior;

Teleology

Creationists believe that the human body and the cosmos generally were designed for a specified purpose. This view is known as teleology. Along these lines, the majority of creationists believe that the male and female sex organs were designed for each other, and not designed for the same sex. They draw this conclusion from the fact that the male and female sex organs are anatomically compatible, and delicately engineered for the purpose of procreation. They further conclude that the male and female sex organs were not designed to interact with their own kind, because they are not biologically compatible, so that homosexuals are forced to resort to many painful and dangerous activities to avoid the fact that their bodies were not designed for homosexuality. In addition, there is a host of diseases which are associated with homosexuality. Thus, many creationists conclude that homosexual activity is a misuse and abuse of sex organs, and a failure to use them as they were designed to be used.

Those holding more liberal views about homosexuality generally either see the purpose of the sex organs as being for pleasure (and thus homosexuality is compatible with their purpose because it is pleasurable), or that the sex organs have no "engineered purpose," and thus can be legitimately be used by an individual in any way he pleases. Thus, much of the difference of opinion stems from one's views on creationism. If one believes that the sex organs were designed for a heterosexual purpose, then homosexuality is clearly a misuse of the organs. If, on the other hand, the sex organs were not designed for a heterosexual purpose, then homosexuality is not a misuse of the organs.

The Bible on Homosexuality

If a man lies with a man as one lies with a woman, both of them have done what is detestable. They must be put to death; their blood will be on their own heads. Leviticus 20:13
Do you not know that the wicked will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor male prostitutes nor homosexual offenders. 1Corinthians 6:9
For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened. Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like mortal man and birds and animals and reptiles. Therefore God gave them over in the sinful desires of their hearts to sexual impurity for the degrading of their bodies with one another. They exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator—who is forever praised. Amen. Because of this, God gave them over to shameful lusts. Even their women exchanged natural relations for unnatural ones. In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed indecent acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their perversion. Romans 1:21-27

Behavioral studies

An article in the Washington Times stated the following:

In "The Male Couple," published in 1984, authors David P. McWhirter and Andrew M. Mattison report that in a study of 156 males in homosexual relationships lasting anywhere from one to 37 years, all couples with relationships more than five years had incorporated some provision for outside sexual activity.[1]

A study of the sexual profiles of 2,583 older homosexuals, published in the Journal of Sex Research, found that 2.7 percent claimed to have had sex with one partner only. Equal rights advocates argue that promiscuity, in the extent that it is found, is not innate to homosexuality but rather promoted by the lack of marriage and other social standards that help extend relationships for heterosexual couples.

Many people have reported leaving homosexuality and becoming heterosexual through their Christian faith.[2][3][4][5] However, the vast majority of homosexuals and modern psychology question the true success of reported conversions, and question the purported need to attempt conversion.[6]

Cause

The following have been proposed as causes of homosexuality:

Genetics

Some assert that a gene triggers homosexuality. This view has several problems. First, the gene has not been identified, so this view is not science, but mere speculation. Secondly, statistical studies give strong evidence that homosexuality is not caused by genetics, but is influenced by environment. For example, research has shown that adoptive brothers are more likely to both be homosexuals than the biological brothers, who share half their genes. In the journal Science it is reported that:

this ... suggests that there is no genetic component, but rather an environmental component shared in families" (Science, Vol. 262, page 2063, December 24, 1993).[7]

Finally, even if there were a genetic causation to the behavior, that would not still not make it acceptable. We all have the predisposition to sin. Being genetically predisposed to a certain attribute does not make the attribute any less harmful. The real issue is not whether it is genetic, but whether it is harmful.

Epigenetics

Environmental influences

Many hold the view that early childhood experiences predispose people to homosexuality. From a very young age, a child's experiences gained from the environment allow a predisposition for homosexual practice. Very few would deny this is at least a contributor. The Bible states, "Raise a child in the ways of the Lord and he will not depart from it" Proverbs 22:6 (NKJV). In short, parents play an important role in influencing their children's choices. However, despite the effect of parents on their children, children are still responsible for their own actions. The environmental aspect triggers social behaviors within society that could in part be the origin of what scientists call, the homosexuality gene. The fact that a child is socialized to be homosexual does not make the behavior any less tragic than a child that is socialized to be a sociopath.

Choice

Most people of faith believe that homosexuality is a choice. Many recovering homosexuals describe their homosexuality as being caused by a combination of socialization and choice, and that their return to a healthy, heterosexual lifestyle was also the result of choice, self-discipline, and faith.

Disease

Several studies have reported an increased risk of acquiring a communicable disease from homosexual sex than with heterosexual sex. However, all sexual transmitted diseases effecting homosexuals also effect heterosexuals.[8][9][10][11]

AIDS

As of 1998, 54% of all AIDS cases in the United States were homosexual men and the Center for Disease Control stated that nearly 90 percent of these men (48% of new cases) acquired HIV through sexual activity with other men.[12] In Western nations, HIV is overrepresented in homosexuals, however worldwide, the vast majority of HIV cases are among heterosexuals.[13]

Intestinal Parasites

An article in the Canadian Medical Association Journal stated the following in its abstract;

In a controlled study 67.5% of 200 homosexual men but only 16% of 100 heterosexual men were found to be infected with intestinal parasites.[14]

These findings suggest that the male homosexual community may be an important reservoir of potentially pathogenic protozoa.If left untreated, these parasites can cause an increased occurrences of stomach flu or liver problems.

Syphilis

According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC):

While surveillance data are not available by risk behavior, a separate CDC analysis suggests that approximately 64 percent of all adult P&S syphilis cases in 2004 were among men who have sex with men, up from an estimated 5 percent in 1999....Syphilis increases, especially among men who have sex with men, demonstrate the need to continually adapt our strategies to eliminate syphilis in the United States,” said Dr. Ronald O. Valdiserri, acting director of CDC’s HIV, STD and TB prevention programs.[15]

Gonorrhea

The CDC had the following to report concerning gonorrhea:

CDC conducted sentinel surveillance in 28 cities and found the proportion of cases resistant to fluoroquinolone antibiotics (a first-line treatment for gonorrhea) increased from 4.1 percent in 2003 to 6.8 percent in 2004. Resistance is especially worrisome in men who have sex with men, where it was eight times higher than among heterosexuals (23.8 percent vs. 2.9 percent). In April 2004, CDC recommended that fluoroquinolones no longer be used as treatment for gonorrhea among men who have sex with men. These antibiotics were also not recommended to treat the disease in anyone in California or Hawaii, where resistance has been widespread for years. Outside of these states, the prevalence of fluoroquinolone resistance among heterosexuals remains low at 1.3 percent.[15]

Mental Health

Recent studies indicate that homosexuals have a substantially greater risk of suffering from a psychiatric problems (suicide, depression, bulimia, antisocial personality disorder, and substance abuse). However, research has only proven correllation, not causation. Many studies caution that social stigma may be to blame for such psychiatric problems.[16]

Also, a national survey of lesbians was published in the Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology which found that 75 percent of the approximate 2,000 respondents had pursued psychological counseling of some type, many for treatment of long-term depression or sadness.

Laws

Hate crimes

In recent years hate crimes laws have become a threat to Christians who would denounce homosexuality as immoral behavior. In 1996, Wisconsin resident David Ott was charged with a hate crime after he attempted to share with a homosexual how God delivered him from the lifestyle. Ott escaped a jail sentence only at great personal cost, $7,000 dollars in legal fees and sensitivity training conducted by two lesbians. In 2004, Swedish authorities arrested and charged Ake Green, a pastor, with a hate crime. He faced a month-long sentence for the so-called "crime" of preaching a sermon based on Romans 1, which condemns homosexuality. In October 2004, 11 Christians were arrested, charged with a hate crime, and spent a night in jail for preaching at a homosexual pride event in Philadelphia. The “Philadelphia 11” ultimately faced up to 47 years behind bars and $90,000 in fines.[17]

Marriage

References

See Also

External Links

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