The Texas GOP Stands on a Platform of Ignorance

Everything really is bigger down in Texas, including our embarrassments.

Republican Party of Texas/FacebookRepublican Party of Texas/FacebookTexas has a lot of things to be proud of. The Republican Party of Texas, however, is not one of them. Turns out everything really is bigger down in Texas, including our embarrassments.

Taking cues from the national party, the Texas GOP invokes religion and false ideas of the Founding Fathers to promote their blatantly anti-science stances. Texas Gov. Rick Perry recently compared the homosexual "lifestyle" to being an alcoholic. In its recently-finished 2014 party platform, Texas Republicans offer the following stances on homosexuality and reparative therapy: 

Homosexuality: Homosexuality is a chosen behavior that is contrary to the fundamental unchanging truths that have been ordained by God in the Bible, recognized by our nation’s founders, and shared by the majority of Texans. Homosexuality must not be presented as an acceptable alternative lifestyle, in public policy, nor should family be redefined to include homosexual couples. We believe there should be no granting of special legal entitlements or creation of special status for homosexual behavior, regardless of state of origin. Additionally, we oppose any criminal or civil penalties against those who oppose homosexuality out of faith, conviction, or belief in traditional values.

Reparative Therapy: We recognize the legitimacy and efficacy of counseling, which offers reparative therapy and treatment for those patients seeking healing and wholeness from their homosexual lifestyle. No laws or executive orders shall be imposed to limit or restrict access to this type of therapy.

While homosexuality may not be "an acceptable alternative lifestyle" to some Republicans, the idea that it is an illness or disorder is almost universally dismissed by health organizations today. The American Psychological Association (APA), for example, "affirms that same-sex sexual and romantic attractions, feelings, and behaviors are normal and positive variations of human sexuality regardless of sexual orientation identity" and "opposes portrayals of sexual minority youths and adults as mentally ill due to their sexual orientation."

Similarly, the idea of reparative therapy has been widely dismissed by health professionals. In a 1999 publication ("Just the Facts About Sexual Orientation & Youth"), 10 health and education organizations—including the APA, the American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Counseling Association, and the National Association of Social Workers—asserted that "the most important fact about 'reparative therapy,' also sometimes known as 'conversion' therapy, is that it is based on an understanding of homosexuality that has been rejected by all the major health and mental health professions." The UK Council for Psychotherapy calls it "exploitative for a psychotherapist to offer treatment that might 'cure' or 'reduce' same sex attraction as to do so would be offering a treatment for which there is no illness."

Reparative therapy does have organizational supporters, including the National Association for Research and Therapy of Homosexuality (NARTH), which describes itself as "a multi-disciplinary professional and scientific organization dedicated to the service of persons who experience unwanted homosexual (same-sex) attractions (SSA)." NARTH executive director David Pruden recently told Texas radio station KUT that reparative therapy is no different than other therapies, saying:

"People seek counseling, they go to a therapist because something is distressing them. Therapists that I work with and we work with here at NARTH are simply therapists who are willing to acknowledge the belief that people's homosexual feelings are, in some cases, unwanted and unwelcome in their lives."

However, people who have endured such "therapy" don’t paint such an innocent picture of it. In a 2012 op-ed for Advocate.com, Peter Gajdics describes his reparative therapy experiences, which included "prolonged, near-fatal doses of five concurrent psychotropic medications" to help "suppress (his) libido". He continues:

When it became clear, despite the medications and almost-daily "feeling therapy," that my same-sex erotic desires were not diminishing, (Dr.) Alfonzo ordered me to bottle my feces and to sniff it whenever I was attracted to a man.

"You need to be reminded where homosexual men stick their penis," he said. "You need to be reminded that homosexual relations are not pleasurable." When none of that worked—I was still attracted to men, only now all erotic desire seemed to elicit the smell of feces—Alfonzo threatened to hook my genitals up to electrodes.

Even in less extreme cases, mental health professionals say reparative therapy—the very name of which is problematic, as it suggests that homosexuality is something that needs to be repaired—can cause psychological harm to patients. Jeff Lutes, an Austin-based licensed professional counselor, told KUT that no matter what methods this therapy uses, it pushes the idea that being normal means being heterosexual, which can lead to depression and suicidal thoughts when the therapy isn't successful. The Pan American Health Organization's position is that reparative therapies "lack medical justification and represent a serious threat to the health and well-being of affected people."

Since the medical world is pretty clear about homosexuality, how did the Texas GOP justify denouncing it and embracing reparative therapy? Oh, right, homosexuality is "contrary to the fundamental unchanging truths that have been ordained by God in the Bible, recognized by our nation’s founders, and shared by the majority of Texans."

The Bible does seem to be strongly against homosexual actions. (Though, to put that into perspective, the Bible also condones slavery.) And polls have found that almost four out of five Texans are "very or moderately religious". In fact, Texas is one of a few states that has a law against atheist politicians. The Texas Constitution stipulates that "no religious test shall ever be required as a qualification to any office, or public trust, in this State; nor shall any one be excluded from holding office on account of his religious sentiments, provided he acknowledge the existence of a Supreme Being."

But regardless of whether "the majority of Texans" reject homosexuality, it’s simply false to suggest that "the fundamental unchanging truths that have been ordained by God in the Bible" were recognized by our Founders as a sound basis for policy or political action. This toxic combination of church and state is exactly what they were trying to prevent.

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  • Sevo||

    "a chosen behavior that is contrary to the fundamental unchanging truths that have been ordained by God in the Bible, recognized by our nation’s founders, and shared by the majority of Texans."

    There's your problem, right there. Superstitions are never a good basis for any decision.

  • Rich||

  • Aloysious||

  • Michael Hihn||

    Well, Reason finally found people even crazier than Ron and Rand Paul on homosexuality! This is what happens when they say "leave it to the states" -- while lying through their teeth about our Constitution

    Ninth Amendment:

    The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.

    Retained by the people, NOT by the states.

    Who explains this to the Pauls? Anyone else think the Founders would allow states to deny or disparage unalienable rights endowed by a Creator?

  • Sevo||

    "Retained by the people, NOT by the states."

    Well, we've got a troll crazier than Alice!
    Uh, if the PEOPLE in the STATES elect to do something, why, look there!

  • Harvard||

    Yeah, unless, of course, they elect to interpret marriage in a way that chaffs you. Which they have in nearly every single election where the question has been on the ballot.

    Alice indeed. The man has merely peeked under the curtain.

  • Michael Hihn||

    Yeah, unless, of course, they elect to interpret marriage in a way that chaffs you. Which they have in nearly every single election where the question has been on the ballot.

    Another one believes that unalienable rights can be denied by a popular vote!! (OMG)

    For any other mentally afflicted:

    "Impossible to take away or give up

    http://www.merriam-webster.com.....nalienable

    Just as crazy as the Obamanauts.

  • ABC||

    "Impossible to take away or give up"

    any military enlisted person may slightly disagree with that statement.

  • Sevo||

    "any military enlisted person may slightly disagree with that statement."

    And that means what? That the government can screw people?
    OK.

  • Michael Hihn||

    I gave the definition of unalienable:

    "Impossible to take away or give up"

    And saw this "response:"

    "any military enlisted person may slightly disagree with that statement."

    1) Which fundamental, unalienable and/or God-given rights has that person lost or given away? Life? Liberty? Pursuit of Happiness? Any of the others?

    2) Should recruiting ads and posters say, "Defend the liberties of all Americans ... by losing your own?

    3) And what's your definition of unalienable rights? (Assuming you've read our Declaration of Independence)

  • Smokert5555||

    According to the USCMJ, the gov't can screw you. It is illegal to participate in sodomy, which is defined as oral or anal sex. Even if you're married to the other participant. It's not really enforced, but the regulation is there. Just like there is no double jeopardy in the military. You can be tried multiple times for the same crime.

  • Michael Hihn||

    just like there is no double jeopardy in the military. You can be tried multiple times for the same crime.

    1) There is no USCMJ
    2) You are also wrong on double jeopardy on the UMCJ
    .

    This from the official website of the US Army.

    The principles of double jeopardy come from the Fifth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution and serve to protect all U.S. citizens, including Soldiers subject to the Uniform Code of Military Justice.
    http://hihn.us/1rMUnlm
  • Uncle Jay||

    It means you can give up certain rights when you sign up in the US military. For example, free speech. You do not have the right to question a direct order if it is lawful, nor can you walk away from the armed forces, nor can you associate with others deemed "the enemy" according the powers that be in the military. There are other examples, but I'm sure you are smart enough to get the idea.

  • Michael Hihn||

    I'm sure you are smart enough to get the idea.

    (lol) Does the right to free speech still allow soldiers to speak in the public square? I'm sure you get the idea. Then again ...

  • politicsbyothermeans||

    Are you really arguing that servicemembers have all of the same rights as civilians?

    Can your boss put you in prison, or put you to death in certain circumstances, if you don't come to work?

    Will you go to jail if you lip off at your boss?

    Can your boss levy additional punishment against you if you get a DUI? Bounce a check? Stop paying your bills?

    I assume you're allowed to attend political events in your work attire. Yes?

    Can you go to prison for saying something rude about the President? Congress?

    Will you get fired and, quite likely, find future employment difficult to come by because you cheated on your spouse?

    Way to cherry pick that quote. The very next sentence is, "However, there are some situations where the Fifth Amendment does not provide total protection from successive punishments."

    A Soldier, for instance, can be convicted of a crime (or not) by a civilian court and then face non-judicial punishment (including confinement and hard labor) for the same crime. If you don't want to call that double jeopardy that's cool, be obtuse. It's so edgy.

    Go ahead and throw your juvenile lols and snickers around all you want. You're completely wrong.

  • Michael Hihn||

    When and if you make it to high school, you'll learn that double jeopardy applies to criminal charges only

    Way to cherry pick that quote.

    I didn't cherry-pick anything, chump. The word "non-judicial" tells us ... WHAT?

    If you don't want to call that double jeopardy that's cool, be obtuse. It's so edgy.

    (laughing) That's NOT double jeopardy in the constitutional sense.

    If you're really so ignorant on the Fifth Amendment, that's cool, be obtuse, make a public fool of yourself.

  • Azathoth!!||

    A 'right' is neither 'unalienable' or a 'right' if it requires action on the part of another.

  • Michael Hihn||

    Relevance?

  • Michael Hihn||

    I asked:

    Anyone else think the Founders would allow states to deny or disparage unalienable rights endowed by a Creator?

    This response (laughing)

    Uh, if the PEOPLE in the STATES elect to do something, why, look there!

    Anyone else believe that unalienable rights can be denied with a popular vote?

    Anyone else who is clueless on the meaning of "unalienable?"

  • Sevo||

    Whooooosh!

  • Michael Hihn||

    Whooooosh!

    I'm sure that many things whiz over Sevo's head .. in this case TWICE!

    Why you people INSIST that unalienable rights can be denied by a popular vote? You've never seen our Constitution?

    From the very beginning of our Republic, some have always denied our concept of individual freedoms, to "justify" their own bigotry. Ron and Rand Paul are merely the latest.

  • Chumby||

    Doesn't paying for a marriage license and registering with the state to be declared "married" sorta take away from inalienable rights? And isn't one if the key reasons for wanting to be considered married so that folks can file joint returns for the coercive tax system?

  • Michael Hihn||

    Typical nonsense from the Christian Caliphate.

    Doesn't paying for a marriage license and registering with the state to be declared "married" sorta take away from inalienable rights?

    No different than recording a property deed, or automobile title. Even if it did, you're sorta left with the concept of equal rights.

    Does a driver's license deny unalienable rights?

    And isn't one if the key reasons for wanting to be considered married so that folks can file joint returns for the coercive tax system?

    That's even wackier.

    1) You AGAIN deny the concept of equal rights!
    2) Yeah, they want to pay less money to a coercive tax system -- on the same standards as everyone else (gasp)
    3) Extreme social conservatives want to keep all the gubmint bennies for themselves.

    You just cannot get around your contempt for equal rights, can you? On what authority do you base your rejection of individual liberty?

  • Chumby||

    (1) I'm not Christian.

    (2) You are arguing from a statist position.

    (3) You completely missed the point of the post because you thought I was Christian and because of (2) above.

    (A) If the state gets out if the marriage licensing business, then any perceived or actual discrimination goes away.

    (B) If you END the coercive tax system, then there is no debate over joint filing versus filing individually separately.

    The other stuff would be handled via free market: if your insurer accepts your same-sex spouse as being covered, great. If not, go with one that does and put social pressure on the one that doesn't.

  • Michael Hihn||

    Now even wackier! Only a "statist" would assume current tax and regulatory standards. Because they can always be repealed!! OMG

    That's your entire "point" which is just as wacky the second time. I was too kind/

    (2) You are arguing from a statist position.

    Like I said, wacky as hell.

    (3) You completely missed the point of the post because you thought I was Christian and because of (2) above.

    Nah. I said you were a wackjob for denying the concept of equal rights, so.... you repeat the SAME wackiness

    (A) If the state gets out if the marriage licensing business, then any perceived or actual discrimination goes away.

    But until that happens .... EQUAL RIGHTS! Hello?

    There are literally hundreds of tax and regulatory conflicts that you apparently know nothing about.

    (B) If you END the coercive tax system, then there is no debate over joint filing versus filing individually separately.

    Until that happens ... EQUAL RIGHTS!

    The other stuff would be handled via free market:

    What do we do until that happens?EQUAL RIGHTS

    You're saying that ayone who does not assume the total elimination of our coercive tax system ... supports that tax system. Ron Paul has conned you right out of your knickers.

  • Chumby||

    Your post is, uh, TRIPLE DOG DARE WHACKY!!! With three exclamation points!!! Ermahgahd!!!! Clearly whacky. Obviously whacky. Adjective, ADJECTIVE whacky.

    I'm not assuming current tax and regulatory standards, I'm accepting them as being present. Which is a position you take later in your post. You know, when you want the state to change those standards to ones for which you are advocating.

    I'm a "wackjob" for supporting the end of government involvement in a contract between adults? And that position denies folks (equal) rights?

    I'm not denying anyone (equal) rights. The state is. I'm calling for the end of the involvement of the group that is doing this. You are trying to partner with them so that they will do your bidding.

    Feel free to go into another ALL CAPS type rage, with some additional wishful thinking and ad hominem fallacies. Because making untrue statements about people (q.v., statement about Christian Caliphate, supporting inequity) is a great way to support an argument. (sarcasm).

    Also, I question one that takes a "...until that happens, we need to do this instead..." while simultaneously referring to the end game, best result as being wacky.

  • Michael Hihn||

    One more time for the mentally afflicted. Unless and until our tax system disappears, then the equal rights standard must apply.

    And -- laughing hysterically -- you said -- it's still here, chump -- that I was a statist because the tax system COULD be repealed.

    Now you even repeat that same wacky assertion that you denied in the same posting.

    I'm not denying anyone (equal) rights. The state is.

    I'm not sure I can dumb it down to your level, but:

    I'm calling for the end of the involvement of the group that is doing this.

    (snicker) So am I, chump. UNTIL that happens, equal rights must apply.

    You are trying to partner with them so that they will do your bidding.

    That's the same bullshit you just denied. I am a "statist" and "trying to partner with them" because I say equal rights must be honored under ANY tax assumptions.

    So you laugh, wipe the drool from your chin ad say, "You're applying equal rights in a tax system I want to end." (OMG)

    Every bit as wacky as Ron Paul.
    This feels like I'm kicking a cripple, or exploiting your mental handicap.

    Equal rights must apply under ANY tax system ... even NO tax system. (snicker)

    Are you done being a stalker yet?

  • Chumby||

    It bears repeating that you lashed out at me for being part of an organization/religion of which I'm not a member. Ad hominem, abusive coupled with wishful thinking. While I don't want to fall into "poising the well" territory, I think you are beyond slippery slope. Got credibility?

    From my perspective, you come off as biased given your penchant for ad hominems and ALL CAPS RAGE. So anything else you support regarding a position you want us all to migrate to could make yourself an irrelevant authority. Your definition of equal suits you. And potentially only you. Your multiple ad hominems don't help your argument. It just shows you are immature. I'm not interested in someone like you defining what is equal to me. This enhances my "ending the state involvement" position. It eliminates bias. Yours. Everyone else's. And you don't get equal with a tax system.

    Thanks for the additional ad hominems. Just to keep score, I'm:
    Mentally afflicted
    Wacky
    Dumb
    Drooling from my chin
    As wacky as Ron Paul
    Mentally Handicapped
    Like a cripple
    Part of the Christian Caliphate
    Oh, and a stalker (even though I was the first one to post in our discussion).

    Hope I didn't miss any.

    I called you a statist because you support the tax system. Period. The rest of your statement regarding the "voting to end the tax system" is a straw man because you never argued it. You posted it. I ignored it. It was a distraction because you weren't supporting that. You still aren't supporting it.

  • Chumby||

    I went back to look and it turns out I was second to post. I thought I was responding to Sevo. In my defense, how could I have not? I mean, you have accounted for over 15% of the posts on this article.

  • DJ Lure||

    Ron Paul has stated several times that the government, whether state or federal needs to get out of the business of marriage. I am not sure about Rand, but Ron takes the libertarian approach to marriage. Your statement therefore is wrong.

  • Michael Hihn||

    Ron Paul has stated several times that the government, whether state or federal needs to get out of the business of marriage

    Wrong. Ron Paul says he supports DOMA, and would have voted for it if he was in office. He's as big a can man as Charles Ponzi. Google ("Ron Paul" DOMA) with quotes as shown.

    Listen to his pathetic bullshit here, in his own voice.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vH0kHoWdK3M#t=138

    Listen closely as he says he opposes recognizing gay marriage because it would expand government benefits. So he trashes the 14th Amendment, and the entire concept of equal rights. He's an extreme social conservative, as is his son.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vH0kHoWdK3M#t=138

    To his brain-dead puppets, they think he simply opposes expanding the welfare state! (OMG)

    And he lies about the 10th Amendment, by ignoring the 9th. States Rights masquerading as federalism. Just like the Klan.

  • KarenStJ||

    Gay couples are just as married as any het couples for all the right reasons. We love each other and want to make our lives together. We are making those bonds...and nothing the states do can change our love and commitment. Period. You will fail if you try. It takes courage to love someone anyway, and our courage in loving our partners gives us the courage to stand up for our love. Just deal with it in public. If you can't deal with it in private...well, we're not in your private space anyway.

    The Texas GOP can only lie to itself when it says this is not true. Living in a matrix of lies is not a road forward to a good life.

  • Rhywun||

    "homosexuality tears at the fabric of society"

    Hey Texas, we're not ALL seamstresses.

  • On The Random, Mandelbrot||

    But some of us want to be.

  • Notorious G.K.C.||

    At the risk of violating ecumenism, I think that that this reparative therapy stuff is a toxic mixture of Protestant fanaticism and the attempted medicalization of human problems.

    Some Protestants seem to think that being free from sin means being free of temptation. A sounder view is that everyone is tempted, and the only real question is what one does with the temptation.

    If anyone is interested, here is a Catholic video showing people dealing with same-sex attraction - they don't have a disease in need of a cure, but simply face it as one of the numerous temptations and crosses of life. The video contains lengthy excerpts of interviews with same-sex attracted people who don't pretend to be anything else.

    http://vimeo.com/93079367

  • Notorious G.K.C.||

    I mean, not that their identity centers around their sexuality, but that they don't think they're incomplete persons unless they can be turned straight.

  • Notorious G.K.C.||

    This is closer to explicit proselytism than I usually get, and I apologize in advance if anyone is offended, but I feel like I need to distance myself from all the "pray away the gay" stuff.

  • EDG reppin' LBC||

    Why would you apologize for it, Eddie? We are pretty familiar with your views and Catholicism. You've never come across as a SoCon (or Bo's idea of a SoCon). It's part of you. Own it. Besides, this is the home of "Free Minds and Free Markets".

  • Notorious G.K.C.||

    Thank you, but I just wanted to clarify that, whether you agree with or not, the Catholic teaching on this point is *different* from that of the most vocal, in-your-face, conservative Protestants.

    I apologize because I don't want my comments to have the perverse effect of alienating people and turning them *away* from the views I articulate.

  • uunderstand||

    The identity of a homosexual does not center around his/her sexuality? Evidently it does. Why else do they find it necessary to proclaim it?

  • Grand Moff Serious Man||

    IIRC, the Mormon church maintains that same-sex attraction is no sin. It's only sinful if you act on it.

  • Grand Moff Serious Man||

    IIRC, the Mormon church maintains that same-sex attraction is no sin. It's only sinful if you act on it.

  • Rhywun||

    So, gays should remain sexless hermits. How compassionate.

  • prolefeed||

    Yeah, Mormons can be kind of crazy about Teh Gaze. Speaking as someone who experienced that crazy at close range for several years.

    Really nice people about 95% of the time.

  • Cytotoxic||

    They'll still be higher up on the ladder than the Blacks in Mormonistan (Utah).

  • ||

    While I think that's generally true, and NARTH presents itself as a secular organization (har), Dr. Nicolosi one of the founding members (and my therapist for a while!) practices out of the Thomas Aquinas Psychological Clinic, so I don't think he's gunning from a protestant perspective.

    Oh and there's JONAH (Jews Offering New Alternatives to Homosexuality). I'm not sure where they found enough Jews who cared about other people's homosexuality to form an organization, but they did.

  • Notorious G.K.C.||

    This is unfortunate - here's a guy who may have had experiences like yours -

    http://prospect.org/article/my.....x-gay-life

    I emphasize that I have no idea if anyone can be "converted" to heterosexuality, but even if true, pushing such ideas on gays in the way families do is likely to be counterproductive, because the suggestion is that if you keep getting those temptations you're spiritually broken, and that can set people up for despair, like the guy in the article.

  • Notorious G.K.C.||

    But I don't think this Nicolosi fellow is necessarily orthodox - the Vatican-approved gay group Courage doesn't try to push heterosexuality on gays, though it promotes chaste living - I quote their Web page not to recruit for them, but simply for the purpose of showing that I'm not making up Catholic teachings on this point -

    "Courage members are under no obligation to try to develop heterosexual attractions, because there is no guarantee that a person will always succeed in such an endeavour. Courage's aim is to help persons with same-sex attractions develop a life of interior chastity in union with Christ. If any of our members wish to go to professionals to explore the possibility of heterosexual development, we will stand by them, by helping them to keep the deepening of their Catholic faith and obedience to Christ as their first priority. Courage itself does not provide professional therapy. Some of our members have found varying levels of heterosexual development to be a by-product of living a chaste life for a period of time; however, the goal and focus of Courage remains a life of interior chastity, humility, and holiness, which can be achieved by all, with God's grace."

    http://couragerc.net/FAQs.html

  • Notorious G.K.C.||

    ("gay group" is my term, not the term they would use.)

  • Notorious G.K.C.||

    And the American Prospect article claims that Dr. N. does not profess to be able to turn people hetero. I don't know what he said to you, though.

    But I'll say that the way families pressure their gay members, it could in practice be the same as calling on them to become hetero, and if they don't, they've let their family down - thus setting the gay person up for despair.

  • ||

    I'm familiar with Courage International. They're certainly more benign compared to many of these groups.

    I remember that he was insistent that therapy begin before I went to college and before I had any sexual experiences because it would be easier to make it stick, but I don't remember exactly how firm his claims were on me ending up hetero. Over the last 5 or so years all of these groups have walked back their insistence that you can live a "normal" life because so many of the poster children have ended up getting caught out on Grindr or in a gay bar "doing research."

  • Rhywun||

    Sorry, a life of chastity is not gonna cut it. If I were religious I would demand a full, rich existence - not condemnation to loneliness and disappointment.

  • Notorious G.K.C.||

    I'm not trying to convert you on the Internet, but only to distance myself a bit from those folks in Texas who tell gay people "it's your fault if you're not hetero!"

    (Incidentally, in his interviews, Pope Francis said evangelization should not initially prioritize these sexual teachings, but that the encounter with Christ should come first, and the specific implications dealt with afterwards. So conversion first, doctrine afterwards, though the doctrine is important).

  • Rhywun||

    No worries - I was speaking more to these organizations than to you. You can say anything you want to me, I won't care, and it won't change a thing :)

  • ||

    If I were religious I would demand a full, rich existence - not condemnation to loneliness and disappointment.

    Within Christian orthodoxy, according to Paul, it's most desirable to remain single, celibate, and fully dedicated to the task of evangelism. A "full, rich existence" in that context means something very different than it probably does to you.

  • KarenStJ||

    It's really only a "temptation" if you happen to see it as one.

    MY girlfriend isn't a temptation. (Well, she can be...) She is the person I love. I will NEVER, EVER be "repaired" enough to love a man as much as I love her. It would be a horrible thing to do to any man for me to marry him, and dare I say an evil thing to do to any children we might produce.

  • EDG reppin' LBC||

    The GOP always figures out how to turn away average Americans. Way to go!

  • Grand Moff Serious Man||

    Look, we as a nation must be vigilant lest those queer-o-sexuals corrupt our public morals with their sodomy, fabulous fashion sense, and syndicated Will & Grace marathons.

  • prolefeed||

    Even a cursory review of the niche categories at any pr0n site would disabuse someone of the notion that sodomy is just a gay thing any longer.

  • The Late P Brooks||

    Bo bait.

  • T.A.L.L||

    This is one of the best news commentary sites on the internet and I love coming here to read on a daily basis. Every once in a while though I see an article like this and cringe.

    I am a conservative Protestant Christian who in every fiber of my being has abandoned the GOP and on a regular basis tries to convince people that Libertarian (albeit a conservative form)ideas about politics is the way to go. I even voted for Ron Paul.

    First of all, whether they be religious in nature or not, ALL political parties "force" their system of philosophy/beliefs on those who elected them. To single out a religiously based political platform as "forcing" beliefs on others is border-lining on a subtle form of bigotry (anti-theism).

    Second, its obvious that there are some involved in this "therapy" that are neither Biblical or Biological/Medicinal in their approach. Lets not though act like the scientific world is united behind a single idea on the cause/existence/explanation/whatever for homosexual feelings/urges/desires/whatever.

    Lastly, mocking a belief system that says that homosexual behavior/feelings/urges is neither because of biology or society is is an expression of just as much ignorance you charge against the southern hillbilly caricature that is often presented as evangelicalism.

  • buybuydandavis||

    ###
    First of all, whether they be religious in nature or not, ALL political parties "force" their system of philosophy/beliefs on those who elected them.
    ###

    The cry of all totalitarians - "hey, everybody is a totalitarian".

    Thank you for your honesty about your own political preferences, but you're mistaken - we're not all totalitarians.

    In particular, libertarians are against forcing the entirety of their philosophy/beliefs on their neighbors. You live your life, I live mine, subject only to the constraint of that equal liberty.

    That's what makes for a libertarian - being willing to abide by the mutual agreement to letting our neighbors go to hell in a manner of their own choosing, limited only by you and your neighbor abiding by the terms of the agreement.

  • T.A.L.L||

    If that is what you got from my statement than I co0mmunicated poorly.

    Let me use an example. I voted for Ron Paul. I vote for him because we share a political philosophy. I understand though that should he get into office that his decisions will be impacted by far more than his political philosophy. His personal belief system, character, education, where he was educated, his mama, being a dad, living in Texas will all have a baring on why he votes a certain way, or, if he had become president, why he would or would not have invaded Iraq. In a sense, because I helped place him in office I have put myself in a position to allow his views to be forced upon me.

    We normally do not see it this way because when we talk about something being "forced" on us we are generally only referring to something we don't want.

  • Cytotoxic||

    mocking a belief system that says that homosexual behavior/feelings/urges is neither because of biology or society is is an expression of just as much ignorance you charge against the southern hillbilly caricature that is often presented as evangelicalism.

    No it isn't. You're just butthurt that Reason calls out SoCon bigotry and ignorance instead of coddling it.

  • T.A.L.L||

    Yes it is.

    The charge against the Christian is that he thinks all homosexuals are lawless, diseased, God haters. Any person who holds that view is rightly called ignorant.

    At the same time any person who thinks that the Christian believes what he does is because he thinks homosexuality is "icky" is and is a cruch-needing ditto head is displaying the same ignorance.

  • Cytotoxic||

    At the same time any person who thinks that the Christian believes what he does is because he thinks homosexuality is "icky" is and is a cruch-needing ditto head is displaying the same ignorance.

    Why? And where in the article does this happen?

  • T.A.L.L||

    In the title of the article.

  • Eric Bana||

    But let's not talk about religion. Just let people believe what they want to--it's not like beliefs inform actions.

    /sarc

  • T.A.L.L||

    Talking religion is fine. It should be an active conversation in the public square. All I am asking is lets not act like there isn't the same potential for ignorance and emotionally charged lunacy that is often lobbed at conservative evangelicalism as those who fine religion a farce.

  • Sevo||

    Absolutely true, and the Mud Mama religionists take it in the shorts shere, too.

  • Eric Bana||

    Talking religion is fine. It should be an active conversation in the public square.

    I'm glad you think that, and I agree. Some people think atheists should be disliked and mistrusted for wanting to discuss religious issues even though this article makes it extremely clear why it's necessary to discuss religion and politics. (Plus, this is the internet. This is the place where people come to talk about things.)

  • Jayburd||

    This should be great news for the Libertarian Party in Texas, right?

  • prolefeed||

    The Texas LP is one of the more active organizations in the nation -- have candidates for just about every congressional seat.

    Still getting single digits at the polls, though, for the most part.

    It's like the Rs in Texas WANT to alienate a group of people that ought to split 50-50 for them if they were remotely non-crazy/non-stupid.

  • Winston||

    This should be great news for the Libertarian Party in Texas, right?

    About as much as the California LP.

    It's extremely rich for Libertarians to attack the GOP for being crazy/stupid since it's not like libertarian ideas are considered sane and intelligent.

  • Jayburd||

    How about this for a party platform- "We do not recognize sexual oriention or marital status as constitutionally protected groups."

  • T.A.L.L||

    Well, as Libertarians we know the ultimate problem here is the Government got involved. Its never "just a little bit of paperwork and a little bit of money."

  • firstpriorities||

    Your suggestion; " We do not recognize sexual orientation or marital status as Constitutionally protected groups."

    Is the only Reasonable stance.

  • Christophe||

    WTF is a "constitutionally protected group" in the first place? Constitutionally protected from what exactly? All rights ascribe to the individual.

    Even the 14th amendment and its equal protection clause makes no mention of protected groups.

    "Constitutionally protected group" is complete nonsense we invented to that certain acts of violence against individuals would pass constitutional muster.

  • Michael Hihn||

    (LOL) You two got it TOTALLY BACKWARDS!!

    Other than the wacky left, who says there are constitutionally protected groups?

    All INDIVIDUALS have constitutionally protected rights, both enumerated and unenumerated. It's only hateful bigots, fascists and statists who create groups for the purpose of DENYING unalienable and/or God-Given rights

    Among the EXTREME social conservatives, many actually deny the Will of God ... in the Name of God!

    "Mass Movements don't need a god, but they do need a devil. Hatred unifies the True Believers."
    -Eric Hoffer, The True Believer

    Throughout human history, the greatest moral delusions have been promoted by those who convince themselves they are following a "higher cause" - the Fatherland, the Master Race, the Collective, a God or the Party. The militant self-righteous.

  • On The Random, Mandelbrot||

    Bad behaviour is human; to do true evil requires religion.

  • ||

    (LOL) You two got it TOTALLY BACKWARDS!!... All INDIVIDUALS have constitutionally protected rights, both enumerated and unenumerated.

    Thanks for the ALLCAPS to emphasize the fact that you are either functionally illiterate or too stupid to comprehend what you read. You just restated the exact fucking thing that the two people you were responding to said. Well done dude.

  • Michael Hihn||

    Or imbecility, like we see next from PM. (lol)

  • Michael Hihn||

    PM begins by lying about my words. (It's his style) Then he lies about the ones I responded to!

    One more time for the goobers: REAL words in italics.

    (LOL) You two got it TOTALLY BACKWARDS!!
    Other than the wacky left, who says there are constitutionally protected groups?...

    NO ANSWER!!!(lol)

    All INDIVIDUALS have constitutionally protected rights, both enumerated and unenumerated. It's only hateful bigots, fascists and statists who create groups for the purpose of DENYING unalienable and/or God-Given rights

    Correction: bigots, fascists, statists ... and goobers like PM (who is my sralker)

  • prolefeed||

    How about "fuck any adult you want, any way you want, so long as you have their consent, and we'll leave you alone"?

    That's the wording I'd use in a party platform.

  • Harvard||

    Might you add "and you can bake a cake for anyfuckingbody you want, or choose not to"? Just so's there isn't any grey area.

  • Michael Hihn||

    Duh, of course.

  • Jayburd||

    "and we re-affirm the individual's right to free association."

  • Jayburd||

    My personal opinion about homosexuality should have no bearing on my politics. My personal opinion about the Constitution should dictate my politics.

  • Marktaylor||

    So they think homosexuality is an abnormal behavior which it obviously is, and don't want the state to control or ban therapy that's voluntary. I love how Reason will abandon all reason and call in daddy statists to get what they want.

  • Dances-with-Trolls||

    Drink.

  • Eric Bana||

    Straw man/red herring much?

  • Sevo||

    Marktaylor|6.28.14 @ 11:30AM|#
    "So they think homosexuality is an abnormal behavior which it obviously is"

    And you know quite well that red hair is abnormal, right? And black skin? And being left-handed?

  • Marktaylor||

    A man who desires to procreate with a woman is normal. If he only desires prepubescent girls he will be unsuccessful at procreation. If he only desires post menopausal women he will not procreate (or pass on his genes). Same for dead people, animals, or people of the same sex. There is a standard for normal, I refuse to take part in this denial of reality just as I refuse those that claim there's no difference between men and women. Just because people enjoy engaging in this fantasy doesn't make it real.

    I don't give a shit, people have all sorts of abnormal behaviors. But when you want to make people bake fucking cakes and act like anyone who thinks people doing weird sexual shit has to be cheered I'm going to call bullshit. I think people who dress in animal costumes is weird too.

  • prolefeed||

    So they think homosexuality is an abnormal behavior which it obviously is

    "obviously" and "abnormal" don't mean what you think they do.

  • Virginian||

    Homosexuality is indeed abnormal, as is left handedness, color blindness, red hair, and many other human traits.

    deviating from the normal or average

  • Eric Bana||

    ...which is why left-handedness especially tears at the moral fabric of society.

  • ||

    My handwriting teacher was too lazy to force me to use my right hand. I was just told to tip my cursive book the other way and hope it turned out all right.

    When I taught in Korea I was told I had to force one of my students to use his right hand because his mother didn't want her son to be different. Meanwhile I was writing on the board with my left.

  • pogi||

    And with the wrong hand.

  • Michael Hihn||

    Did God have your bigotry in mind, when He shamelessly endowed ALL humans with equal, unalienable and/or God-Given Rights?

  • On The Random, Mandelbrot||

    Uhm. Which 'god'?

  • Michael Hihn||

    Ummm. Which 'god'?

    (lol) The God of sarcasm. See, we have these people denying the professed Will of their God ... in the very name of their God.

    I'm an atheist, but not all of us are hateful bigots. Some call that "tolerance."

  • SusanM||

    "Voluntary" is the key here. When the issue of reparative therapy is discussed in politics it's usually in the context of minors being compelled to attend these sessions and not a question of fully consenting adults. To my knowledge , no one has banned any voluntary exchanges between consenting adults. If any of these therapies ever actually passed any objective test for consistent effectiveness it might be a different story.

    But hey, a consenting adult can do any damnfool thing that doesn't hurt anyone else. Gay conversion therapy, Reiki, acupuncture or (god help us) soccer tickets - it doesn't matter what they throw their money away on.

  • Eric Bana||

    But hey, a consenting adult can do any damnfool thing that doesn't hurt anyone else.

    I agree with the legal/political aspect. I'm interested in discussing the cultural lenses behind such ideas. I think the belief that homosexuality "tears at the fabric of society" is an outrageous and harmful belief to have. I don't want hundreds of thousands/millions of people in the U.S. to suffer severe psychological and emotional distress because they think that their natural sexual desires are depraved, sinful, and damning. I'm interested in discussing these things because I want an end to homophobia.

  • T.A.L.L||

    I'll engage in that conversation. I also will lay this on the table: Belief that homosexuality is a sinful activity is not an automatic turn or does not automatically result in homophobia.

  • Eric Bana||

    In my opinion, homophobia is a range that includes beliefs that homosexuality is depraved and/or sinful.

  • T.A.L.L||

    Then for you, affirmation and acceptance is the only position acceptable. You have ended the conversation before its even possible to be had.

    I personally would define homophobia as: any action or attitude that places a persons human value below your or any others because of their sexual activity, particularly homosexual activity.

    The degrading of the value of an individuals is something Jesus said put you in danger of judgement.

  • SusanM||

    Okay, you think it's sinful. Now, what do you wish to do with that? Call me names? I can deal. Not sell me merchandise at your store? Kinda rude, but I work for my money so fuck you if you don't want it. What else? Do you want to...kill me? Maybe pass laws so the cops do your dirty holy work (as if they need the encouragement)? What's the next step after acknowledging your feelings on the matter?

  • T.A.L.L||

    Well, every situation you mentioned would, should I act in that manner, be entirely contrary to the faith that I hold. Seeing an activity done by my neighbor that is sinful does not provide a vacuum for my own sinful activity.

    If you were my neighbor I would hope, and would yes, pray, that we could engage in a conversation that would allow me to present an explanation of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. From there I would be your friend, your neighbor, and if needs be, your fence post repairer. Should you choose never to hear/listen/believe, I still am under obligation to love my neighbor as it is the most logical and complete form of loving the Lord my God with all my heart, all my soul, all my mind, and all my strength.

  • SusanM||

    If you can accept my saying "I'm sorry I don't believe it" I don't have a problem with the arrangement. Peaceful coexistence doesn't require a kumbaya lovefest.

  • T.A.L.L||

    I can accept that. Hope someday you meet someone truly in love with Jesus and not overtaken by psudo-Christianity.

  • Eric Bana||

    Then for you, affirmation and acceptance is the only position acceptable. You have ended the conversation before its even possible to be had.

    No, the conversation doesn't have to be over. When people disagree, we can discuss why we have our differences and perhaps refine or change our points of view. I don't think homosexuality should be viewed as a bad thing. Why would you?

  • Eric Bana||

    (I used to be a conservative Christian. But through engaging other people and their points of view, I radically changed my opinions and beliefs. Same goes for how I thought the Iraq war was a good idea.)

  • T.A.L.L||

    The Iraq war has now proven to be a bad idea, especially with the rising influence of Iran, the billions of wasted money, and the overwhelming cycle of death.

  • T.A.L.L||

    I think its a bad thing because it is presented in the Bible as an outward evidence of our bent to find and approve of ways that rebel against the in-planted knowledge of God that exists in every person.

  • Eric Bana||

    Do you think slavery is a bad thing? I find it a poor idea to venerate a book whose god said nothing about ending slavery and even seemed to accept it by saying how it should best be done.

    Furthermore, why is homosexuality immoral, or why does god proclaim it to be immoral?

  • T.A.L.L||

    Ah, the old slavery argument. I am sure my response is not going to include things you have not already heard.

    1. As Americans, slavery is viewed through the lens of our nations history. The problem with that is this: That what happened in our nation, as well as in western Europe, actually falls under what the Bible calls "man-stealing", which is clearly condemned.

    2. A "dulos", the most common form of slavery in Roman and Greek culture,and the most common term used in the New Testament, was 9 times out of 10, an economical relationship. In some cases the "dulos" even became an adopted son. Now granted under these conditions, abuse happened and the New Testament does give warning to the "master" in that case, especially a Christian master.

  • T.A.L.L||

    3. The clearest case in the New Testament is found in Philemon. Philemon was a rich man who probably had several "dulos'". One ran away, which according to Roman law, would have been more like a soldier going AWAL, then a slave running away in American history. He also likely stole something from Philemon. Somehow this slave ends up meeting Paul, converts to Christianity, and for a short time helps Paul in his ministry in Rome. Paul send him back to Philemon with the letter we find in the Bible called Philemon. Paul, in a not so subtle way, tells Philemon that this slave is now,and should be treated as, his own brother. Paul does even give a nudge at the idea of freeing the dulos from any financial and legal obligation he has to Philemon. Don't you consider that a radical teaching concerning the issue of slavery. That a man, who every part of society says is below you, must now, under Christian obligation, be treated as your own flesh and blood brother?

  • T.A.L.L||

    Not all, but most and many, who led the charge to end the western form of slavery did so on an evangelical theology based on sola scriptora, or the Bible alone. So the argument that the Bible plays and played no part in ending slavery in American history simply isn't true.

  • Eric Bana||

    The Bible was also used to justify slavery.

    So at best Paul said slaves should be treated well and gave a nudge about freeing them? (Not to mention the Old Testament acceptance of slavery and rules about how one should go about it from God.)

    More importantly, why didn't God directly and plainly make it clear that slavery is immoral? And why did God proclaim homosexuality to be immoral?

  • T.A.L.L||

    "Treated well?" That is all you see there? Personally I am blown away by the expectation that is presented.

    Ah, well, the Bible has been used to justify a lot hasn't it. That fact actually plays no part in its own validity. Like a using a gun for a crime does not implicate the flawless design of the gun or the laws of physics that carried the bullet to its destination.

  • T.A.L.L||

    Well, if you are speaking to slavery in the context of American history then IT DOES! Ad why does God call it immoral, because it debases human life, the most valuable thing, above all things, found in creation.

    To try and keep it brief, the slavery concept in the Old Testament is/has many similarities to the Greek/Roman idea.

    The common form of slavery, and the one the New Testament addresses, is where I, broke and homeless, sell myself as a slave. I can, after a time, save money to free myself. The master can, if he so chooses adopt me or even just give me legal privilege over his stuff. The negative is that how I am treated, what I get paid, my living conditions are not legally protected. I have freely chosen to become his stuff. So, when the New Testament comes along and says that my master has a moral obligation to do right by me, and I have a moral obligation to do right by him (like not steal his stuff) it is proposing a radical change in societal structure. The teaching on slavery, when understanding from its context, fits more the employer/employee relationship and is distant from a western view of slavery, which it does condemn.

  • T.A.L.L||

    Why is homosexuality immoral in the context of the Bible?

    1. The human body is declared as holy. All things in Scripture that are declared holy come with direct instruction as to how it must be approached. In this case, I am only rightly allowed access to another persons body if I am willing to make a covenant of marriage.

    2. The first example of one person given access to another in the covenant of marriage involved a man and woman and was instigated by God himself.

    Any resistance to what God has laid down is seen as an attempt to undermine His authority and therefore immoral. immoral.

  • Eric Bana||

    Well, God seemed to be pretty harsh with slaves: Exodus 21:20-21: Anyone who beats their male or female slave with a rod must be punished if the slave dies as a direct result, but they are not to be punished if the slave recovers after a day or two, since the slave is their property.

    And female slaves seemed to get the short end of the stick: Exodus 21:7-11 If a man sells his daughter as a servant, she is not to go free as male servants do.

    And foreigners could be taken as slaves in what seems to be close to a pretty bad form of slavery: Leviticus 25:44-46 Your male and female slaves are to come from the nations around you; from them you may buy slaves. You may also buy some of the temporary residents living among you and members of their clans born in your country, and they will become your property. You can bequeath them to your children as inherited property and can make them slaves for life, but you must not rule over your fellow Israelites ruthlessly.

    I would simply expect the all-moral supreme being of the world to say clearly that slavery is immoral and that it is wrong to practice it when he laid out morality in the book he was supposed to have inspired. Why didn't the Christian God do that?

  • T.A.L.L||

    Those are some great examples there. (No Sarcasm) Since the later part of Exodus, most of Leviticus, and Deuteronomy overlap I think it would be ok to address all of these passages with a single answer. Hope that is ok with you.

    I think you are still seeing these passages with your American history background. Notice in the texts you quoted that one underlining principle in each is that just because a person is your slave, which, once again, resembles closer to an economic relationship than a western civilization form of slavery, their value as a human being is not to be debased.

    Lets also not pretend those texts you quoted don't come with a context. Females slaves were not allowed to be set free not because God hates women but because alone, she would have been very vulnerable.

    Historically, this was Israel's problem. They thought that they were good, God approved people, if they kept the letter of the law. They didn't see that God was trying to teach them about their own sinfulness. The prophets of the Old Testament preached over and over and over, some even commenting on slavery, that Israel was missing the point. The point was not that it was ok to beat your slave to within an inch of their life, but that this was a person who has rights and also bares the image of God.

  • Eric Bana||

    Notice in the texts you quoted that one underlining principle in each is that just because a person is your slave, which, once again, resembles closer to an economic relationship than a western civilization form of slavery, their value as a human being is not to be debased.

    Exodus 21:20-21 allows masters to beat their slaves harshly since slaves are property. That debases their value as a human being. They can also be bequeathed to one's children and used as property in Leviticus 25:44-46. That debases their value as a human being.

    Females slaves were not allowed to be set free not because God hates women but because alone, she would have been very vulnerable.

    It's clear to me that slavery is not an answer to that problem.

    Notice that you never answered the question: Why did God not clearly and directly say that slavery was immoral and that it should not be practiced? It would have helped a lot in world history. When I stopped engaging in special pleading for Christianity and the Bible, things changed. I adopted the idea that the Bible was not inspired by a supreme being at all, but was only written by ancient people with ancient moral systems, just like any other supposed holy book.

    I've got to go. It was enjoyable talking with you.

  • Robert||

    Why did God not clearly and directly say that slavery was immoral and that it should not be practiced? It would have helped a lot in world history.


    Because then they'd've gotten themselves another God, probably one that could kick Jehova's ass.

  • Jayburd||

    Maybe we could amend the Bible.

  • gaoxiaen||

    Slavery is probably better than killing them all, as the ancient Israelites are reputed to have done.

  • Eric Bana||

    The first example of one person given access to another in the covenant of marriage involved a man and woman and was instigated by God himself.

    I'm still curious as to why God declared homosexuality is immoral.

  • T.A.L.L||

    Well, God ceases to be God if He is not an authority to/of/in Himself.

    All I can answer is the explanation and standard given in the Bible. From my vantage point, I don't see a single inch of room from me to have a right to demand an answer.

    Another way of saying it. The fact that a murder/rapist's life is just as valuable as mine is grounded entirely on the fact that God declares it to be so.

    The fact that the ground around the burning bush was holy was because God declared it to be so. It had nothing to do with the dirt, grass or flowers.

  • Michael Hihn||

    T.A.L.L. "The fact that a murder/rapist's life is just as valuable as mine is grounded entirely on the fact that God declares it to be so."

    So who's been spreading all that bullshit about Hell, eternal damnation, punishing children and grandchildren for the sins of their ancestors. Which God are you talking about, certainly not the Christian God. It was the Christian God who commanded the immediate death of anyone who dared to follow another prophet -- even to killing your own brother, spouse, child or friend.

    THAT God is vicious and hateful God. Or have you never read the Bible?

    The fact that the ground around the burning bush was holy was because God declared it to be so. It had nothing to do with the dirt, grass or flowers.

    Well, that was useless. The same God who commanded mass genocide of the Canaanites? Ever hear of the Great Flood?

  • Michael Hihn||

    Why is homosexuality immoral in the context of the Bible?

    Only to bigots and liars, who pick and choose which parts of the Bible to follow, and which parts are ... incon-veeeen-ient for them to follow.

    Any resistance to what God has laid down is seen as an attempt to undermine His authority and therefore immoral. immoral.

    By those same bigots and liars. I'll believe them when they follow all of God's barbarities in Leviticus and Deuteronomy. Your crap fails to anyone who knows the Bible that you distort in your apostasy.

    Let us know when you advocate the IMMEDIATE killing of ANYONE who follows a different prophet ... even your own brother, spouse, child or friend.

    Or when you'll defend stoning a woman to death who was not a virgin on her wedding night ... but okay if a man wasn't.

    Even the Koran has no such moral atrocities.

    Back to the point, how do you defend placing your own will against the Will of God?

  • Michael Hihn||

    Thank goodness our Founders were so strongly supportive of Separation.

  • Baelzar||

    Serious question:

    If being gay is a choice, then do all men have the capability to choose to be gay?

    For example, you could choose to be gay. You could choose to deny sexual attraction to the opposite sex (perhaps even be repulsed by it), and instead be attracted only to the same sex. If being gay is a choice, then this follows.

    Have you ever tried it? You should, if you espouse the belief that sexuality is a choice.

    See, no matter how hard I try, I'm unable to change it for an instant. Why would I try, you ask? Because I'm curious if it's possible. It really brings home to me that sexual preference is one of the most fundamental parts of me. Unchangeable.

    How can you reconcile this?

  • Robert||

    I don't think it's unchangeable, but I do think it's not changeable by will. People's preferences for most things can change, and many of them do over their lifetimes, but never by choice. I see no reason why sexual preference would be an exception to this truism, any more or less than preference for blondes vs. brunettes.

  • ||

    No, the conversation doesn't have to be over. When people disagree, we can discuss why we have our differences and perhaps refine or change our points of view.

    "You're objectively, irredeemably wrong, but feel free to stick around and explain your beliefs so that I can explain to you why they are wrong" is "conversation" only in the most academic sense of the term. You're describing something a lot closer to a monologue.

  • Sevo||

    "The degrading of the value of an individuals is something Jesus said put you in danger of judgement."

    Well, you have a problem there; that Jesus guy seems never to have existed.
    So you wanna talk about what the unicorns told you?

  • T.A.L.L||

    You know, if I said that Napoleon never existed I think you would have some room to ask me about unicorns.

    Never met Napoleon. I've read a lot about him since a lot of people who met and knew him wrote about him. I also can read about how his navy and army left a massive influence that can still be seen today.

    What were you saying about unicorns?

  • Sevo||

    T.A.L.L|6.28.14 @ 3:06PM|#
    "You know, if I said that Napoleon never existed I think you would have some room to ask me about unicorns."

    Ignorant faith combined with 5yo logic; expected of superstitionists.

  • Sevo||

    Oh, and once more; there is not one shred of evidence that junior ever existed.

  • T.A.L.L||

    Throwing out exaggerations, insults, and declarative statements does not make for a great argument.

    So you really think that my belief is tied to some inner hope that I just really really hope Jesus is real?

    Can you prove or defend your argument that Jesus never existed and that I am just following some God in the gaps, superstition?

  • wwhorton||

    So, there seem to be two things happening here. There's a debate (and I'm using that word loosely) over the merits of Christianity, and I guess really a specific interpretation of the Bible, and there's a debate over whether a person can hold a particular opinion about homosexuality without infringing on the rights of others.

    I'm an atheist. Personally, I get creeped out when you start talking about "God-given" rights, because if God gave them to you God can take them away. And since God doesn't hold press conferences, that means one of his human prophets will be doing the speaking. You can see where I'd be a mite suspicious.

    I don't care about anyone's religious beliefs. I think you should believe whatever you'd like, and I respect your decision in that regard. I reserve the right to my own opinions about your beliefs, particularly when your opinions about other people are based on those beliefs.

    Why you believe homosexuality is immoral is irrelevant to me. As long as it doesn't find its way into law or my personal rights (wouldn't in this case, but for the sake of argument) it doesn't matter.

  • Sevo||

    T.A.L.L|6.28.14 @ 3:23PM|#
    "Throwing out exaggerations, insults, and declarative statements does not make for a great argument."

    Insipid sophistry about historical figures not only doesn't make an argument, it suggests you're an imbecile.
    ---------------------
    "So you really think that my belief is tied to some inner hope that I just really really hope Jesus is real?"

    Now, let's see what was posted:
    "The degrading of the value of an individuals is something Jesus said put you in danger of judgement."
    So you tell me.
    ----------------------
    "Can you prove or defend your argument that Jesus never existed and that I am just following some God in the gaps, superstition?"

    Fail. You prove he existed; I claim there is no evidence of such.
    You are a slimy sort, aren't you?

  • T.A.L.L||

    And here we go:

    The New Testament is the most documented ancient manuscript in human history. The earliest scrap dates to before 100 AD and the first total collection dates around 150 AD. The New Testament documents are quoted by early church fathers and early historians starting around 100 AD, some by men who knew men who knew Jesus. The earliest church creed dates AT most 50 years after Jesus' death and presumed resurrection.

    Although you may not believe WHAT is said about him in those documents, the big giant vast majority of scholars, both Christian and secular, are convinced that a historical person named Jesus lived in the Palestinian region during the time Augustus Caesar.

  • Sevo||

    "The New Testament is the most documented ancient manuscript in human history. The earliest scrap dates to before 100 AD and the first total collection dates around 150 AD. The New Testament documents are quoted by early church fathers and early historians starting around 100 AD, some by men who knew men who knew Jesus. The earliest church creed dates AT most 50 years after Jesus' death and presumed resurrection."

    So you admit you have NO EVIDENCE whatsoever, regardless of your arm-waving about a collection of documented myths? Who do you think is fooled by that sort of bullshit?
    ------------
    "Although you may not believe WHAT is said about him in those documents, the big giant vast majority of scholars, both Christian and secular, are convinced that a historical person named Jesus lived in the Palestinian region during the time Augustus Caesar."

    Unless, of course, you mean the guy who did the gardening at that time, and aside from being a blatant appeal to authority, that is an outright LIE. Yes, a LIE; is that clear?
    Sorry, god-talker; FAIL.

  • ||

    I'm always amused when Sevo busts out the "HURRRR DURRRR THERE R TEH NO JEEEEBUS YOU RELIGIOUS FUCKSTICK CUNTSACK IGNORANT HILLBILLY DID I USE ENOUGH PROFANITY AND CAPS YET??!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!!one!!eleventy!!"

    Considering the number of scholars who hold his view could be counted on one hand.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Historicity_of_Jesus

    B-b-b-b-b-ut MUH JEEEEBUS BONER!!!!

    Thank god you're not religious or anything!

  • Sevo||

    PM|6.28.14 @ 9:34PM|#
    "I'm always amused when Sevo busts out the "HURRRR DURRRR THERE R TEH NO JEEEEBUS YOU RELIGIOUS FUCKSTICK CUNTSACK IGNORANT HILLBILLY DID I USE ENOUGH PROFANITY AND CAPS YET??!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!!one!!eleventy!!"

    As an imbecilic bleever, I'm sure you look for any possible excuse to claim your stupidity is somehow less than stupid.
    Now, do you have any evidence that junior existed, or just a bunch of caps to prove you're not real bright?

  • Sevo||

    Oh, and I wasted time looking at the wiki link:
    Yes, someone called Jesus might have existed sometime close to that time the xians claim and maybe he might have made some statements that might somehow be close to some of the statements the xians claim that junior might have said and maybe someone wrote them down, and we can get enough people to agree to this to make the unsupported claim in the headline and you're a fucking idiot.
    Buzz off, jackass.

  • Michael Hihn||

    SEVO: "So you admit you have NO EVIDENCE whatsoever,"

    (lol) WHERE?

  • Sevo||

    Michael Hihn|6.30.14 @ 7:32AM|#
    SEVO: "So you admit you have NO EVIDENCE whatsoever,"
    (lol) WHERE?"

    Uh, WIH is that?

  • Michael Hihn||

    Uh, WIH is that?

    (lol) What did I quote of yours? Umm, "hhere" does he admit that he has no evidence whatsoever? STILL confused?

    He has as much evidence as we have for the existence of Aristotle. Do you deny Aristotle ever existed? Why?

    How about Christopher Columbus?

  • craiginmass||

    "Can you prove or defend your argument that Jesus never existed and that I am just following some God in the gaps, superstition?"

    You can't prove that the flying pasta monster is not the true God......

    Since you consider yourself a libertarian, it's worth noting what the "God of Libertarians" says about the subject:

    "Faith, as such, is extremely detrimental to human life: it is the negation of reason"

    "If I were to speak your kind of language, I would say that man's only moral commandment is: Thou shalt think. But a 'moral commandment' is a contradiction in terms. "

    "The alleged short-cut to knowledge, which is faith, is only a short circuit destroying the mind."

    She said only the weak minded would even consider faith - and she also called it MUCH worse than "neutral". That is, if she could have wiped it from the face of the earth, she would have.

    I cannot imagine how you can align your thinking with this publication or any of the so-called libertarian echo chambers being funded by the Koch Brothers. The real idea of all of this is pretty simple - to lower taxes and increase profits for resource extraction billionaires.

    They caught you in their net. But that's not surprising as you've already proven that you believe just about anything coming from "authority".

  • Michael Hihn||

    SEVO: "Oh, and once more; there is not one shred of evidence that junior ever existed."

    1) Just as much proof as Aristotle having existed. (snicker)

    2) Not all of us atheists are hateful bigots like Sevo. Or as stucking fupid.

    I'm quite certain that Aristotle existed. And George Washington! Julius Caesar! Marco Polo!!

  • Sevo||

    "2) Not all of us atheists are hateful bigots like Sevo. Or as stucking fupid."

    True.
    Your insecurity is not my problem, idjit.

  • Michael Hihn||

    Your insecurity is not my problem, idjit.

    Speaking of idjits (snicker) Do you deny that Aristotle ever existed? Julius Caesar? Marco Polo? Christopher Columbus? Or are you full of crap on that also?

    Your getting your knickers in a twist, having been called out as a liar and a fool. Too bad.

    Did Thomas Jefferson exist?

  • SusanM||

    As do I. But we're a long way from that yet. Given the stigma still hanging over being gay or trans it's not unreasonable to want to try to change. The "Fabric of society" crap is just the inane vocalization of persistent attitudes in most places. Despite progress in the media it's still a choice between torturing yourself by living a lie or by living the truth - it's still emotional distress either way and will be for a while.

    And while it's pretty sleazy that the Ex-Gay crowd takes advantage of this, if it gives someone solace to unconvincingly say "I like pussy...yeah, that's the ticket" then they shouldn't be looked down on.

  • On The Random, Mandelbrot||

    As a trans* woman, I can reliably report that the pain of living the truth is offset somewhat by honoring one's individual integrity. The most frequent judgment comes from those who hold socially and publicly pious or religious views. I work everyday to change one individuals' perception, simply to make my environment safe.

    As an atheist, I can state that my honesty and lifelong adherence to personal responsibility, compassion and empathy have nothing to do with any particular sky fairy. As a youth I was unable to reconcile the world around me with a 'supreme being'. I still cannot.

    Thus, I manage to inhabit two of the most socially maligned circles in the Venn diagram of life in the US; and some one wants to talk to me about gods' message? Pfft.

  • Sevo||

    Gotta be tough; give 'em pfft.

  • T.A.L.L||

    I will even grant the argument that the taboo nature of homosexuality in western culture, up until recently, was because of a combination of Elizabethan societal rules and the heavy influence of Puritan ethics in the last 200-300 years.

  • OneOut||

    I'm not sure but I believe such "therapy" is illegal in California.

  • SusanM||

  • Scarecrow Repair||

    Let's see .....

    A) Homosexuality is genetic. Therefore it has evolved to exist, and therefore nature has some use for it. Therefore is it natural. Therefore it is none of government's business to treat as unnatural or sinful.

    B) Homosexuality is a choice. Since government's only true business is to enforce redress by victims, and the only victims of homosexuality are those who choose to practice it, it is none of government's business.

  • Robert||

    I don't think it's genetic, nor do I think it's a choice. I think it, like all other preferences, is involuntary and a result of who-knows-what processes, including possibly the truly random.

  • Michael Hihn||

    Even Ronald Reagan said homosexuality is NOT a choice. He also said, regarding gay schoolteachers, that they are no threat to our children because homosexuality is not communicable, like measles.

  • DJF||

    If its not nature and its not nurture then it must be Magic Fairy Dust.

  • Cytotoxic||

    I love how butthurt and mendacious SoCon turds get when they're called out on their BS.

  • Smokert5555||

    Where did you come up with the idea that homosexuality is abnormal? Being in a minority doesn't make it abnormal. You can't call trying to change a person's sexuality "therapy". The only real objection to homosexuality is on religious grounds. But when the same religions condone slavery, murder and abuse, and can't even follow what their own books say, the religious objection loses any merit.

  • lap83||

    "Though, to put that into perspective, the Bible also condones slavery."

    So that's the logic you want to use?

    The constitution SEEMS to support free speech. Though, to put that into perspective, the guys who wrote it also condoned slavery.

  • lap83||

    That attitude of, "Oh, aren't we sooo much more enlightened and moral than those ancient fools who did XYZ just because we live today and not then" is the kind of sickeningly self-righteous elitism I associate more with progs, not libertarians.

    As if anyone who lives today has ANYTHING to do with the fact that slavery doesn't exist.

  • Eric Bana||

    I don't automatically venerate the constitution. I recognize that parts of it are bad such as allowing slavery and establishing a federal postal monopoly. Many people automatically venerate the entirety of the Bible even when there are strange parts of it, i.e. condoning slavery. I don't think people should accept slavery just because the Constitution said so or that people should condemn homosexuality just because the Bible says so.

  • T.A.L.L||

    I appreciate your desire to defend the Bible, but the flaw in the comment you quoted is that Bible does not condone slavery. I would urge you to spend more time in the book. Have more confidence in the Scriptures brother.

  • Sevo||

    "Have more confidence in the Scriptures brother."

    Mythology interests some.

  • MSD62581||

    Kind of like the belief that the universe came into being on its own?

  • Sevo||

    MSD62581|6.29.14 @ 2:47AM|#
    "Kind of like the belief that the universe came into being on its own?"

    So your skydaddy was the product of an earlier skydaddy who was a product of...
    Did you have a point? Or just a random idiotic statement?

  • Eric Bana||

    the Bible does not condone slavery.

    Well, there are at least some awfully confusing things in the bible then. It's pretty easy to say why people used the bible to justify slavery. Look at my comment above with Exodus 21:20-21, Exodus 21:7-11, Leviticus 25:44-46.

    Having confidence in the Scriptures is special pleading.

  • MSD62581||

    He's correct. It does not. Slavery was a fact of life all over the world at the time. Many people at the time sold themselves into slavery to pay off debts or avoid starvation. Slavery was also abolished first in Christian lands.

  • Michael Hihn||

    "Slavery was also abolished first in Christian lands."

    Deceptive bullshit. It was those same "Christian lands" who brought slavery (and slaves) to the New World.

    It was an explicitly secular state, America, which FINALLY banned slavery after nearly 2000 years of Christianity. And once we separated Chrich and State, it took us a mere 70 years.

    Christianity - 1800 years of slavery
    Secular America - 70 years

  • On The Random, Mandelbrot||

    Wow. Just WOW!!!
    So I guess you are one who writes off the entire old testament; destruction, enslavement and slaughter of the tribe which do not believe as you? Wow.

  • T.A.L.L||

    I'm not sure I understand what you are saying here.

  • Sevo||

    T.A.L.L|6.28.14 @ 10:44PM|#
    "I'm not sure I understand what you are saying here."

    Willful ignorance is the hallmark of bleevers.

  • Michael Hihn||

    T.A.L.L "I'm not sure I understand what you are saying here."

    It would apply to the Jews stealing their "homeland" by committing mass genocide against the Canaanites. As commanded by God.

  • ||

    The constitution SEEMS to support free speech. Though, to put that into perspective, the guys who wrote it also condoned slavery.

    And as popular morality shifted we were able to edit the constitution to remove such things as the 3/5ths compromise, and implement a corrective.

    With the Bible when morality shifts the only thing that can be done is selective reading and handwaving. Many of these arguments could be stopped in their tracks by rejecting saying "the old covenant has passed away. The Old Testament is there to remind us what it's like living under the law without Christ acting as mediator between man and God," and while some do that, you still have Christians mining the Old Testament for things to be angry about, and so you have critics of Christians mining the Old Testament for things Christians should be embarrassed about.

  • On The Random, Mandelbrot||

    +5 Golden Idols

  • ace_m82||

    "A" is wrong. "A" need not be illegal unless it harms some unwilling participant.

    Adultery is wrong. Adultery need not be illegal unless it harms some unwilling participant.

    Replace "A" with non-marital sex, lusts, homosexual acts, etc.

    Huh, almost like being a Fundamentalist Christian and a libertarian isn't logically impossible...

  • ||

    Your response is tucked under my comment and yet has nothing to do with it.

    Huh, almost like you responded to me without reading what I wrote.

  • ace_m82||

    Nope. It has everything to do with it. It refers to the "handwaving".

  • ||

    I do not permit a woman to teach or to assume authority over a man; she must be quiet.

    I've seen two response to this. One is that women in some particular congregation were interrupting services and so they were told to pipe down until after service and then ask her husband any questions that they had about it. This was printed in the notes of the Bible I grew up with. Handwaving.

    The other, which was done by the church I grew up in, was to purge women from leadership posts because the pastor was "convicted" that the passage had bearing on how modern churches should be run. Really phenomenal people were demoted or let go from our family church's staff due to this policy change. What fun.

  • ace_m82||

    Women weren't educated in those days, so the first does make best answer.

    Also, it says "I do not permit", in other words, Paul. Though it was certainly not an iron rule because Priscilla and Aquilla (wife mentioned before her husband!) taught Apollos.

  • Chumby||

    Adultery does harm an unwilling participant. For it to be adultery, it involves someone who has made a commitment (an agreement) with another person and then broke it.

    I agree with you on the other items.

  • ace_m82||

    Adultery is the messy one, though all that is broken is the contract (maybe). So the cheated takes the money of the cheater and they separate.

  • Chumby||

    With this specific contract, there is a substantial emotional component that isn't present in most other contracts.

    I know the wife of one of the Kennebunk Zumba johns. They have several young kids. It must have been embarrassing to have to come to work knowing that everyone knows. Messy indeed.

  • Smokert5555||

    The people who wrote the constitution were not gods. God should know that it's wrong to own another human being, right? People make mistakes and hopefully, correct them. Does anybody today, common folk or national leaders, condone slavery? This shows that we can overcome our bad behavior. Has god come out to say slavery is wrong? Not at all. This can be construed to mean god still has no problem with slavery.

  • Michael Hihn||

    There were Slave States and Free States, within an overall Union that once granted more to State Sovereignty. So you may be overstating the overcoming of bad behavior for mankind.

    But an excellent point on God condoning slavery ... especially when Jesus essentially condemned most of the moral barbarities and atrocities in Mosaic Law.

  • ABC||

    Since when did Pandering To The Base(TM) require any scientific accuracy?

    GOT PANDERING GOP?

    Yes they do.

  • Tony||

    Polite Christians are the most annoying fucking people on earth.

  • ||

    I see your polite Christians and raise you "fans of any given boyband."

  • ||

    So you converted and learned manners?

  • dj kumquat||

    the APA has allowed politics to trump science, as any good long time reader of reason magazine knows.

  • ||

    Seriously. For 20 years after Evelyn Hooker showed that gay men and women's tests were indistinguishable from straight men and women's tests when read by leading experts in various testing modalities popularly used in the '50s, homosexuality remained a pathology diagnosis in the DSM.

    Although I'm guessing that's not what you mean, is it?

  • ||

    You have to admit there's no shortage of irony in holding up the APA as your standard considering that Reason routinely publishes material castigating psychiatry as pseudo-science and lambasting the APA for pathologizing aberrant behavior. Not to mention that the self-same APA classified homosexuality as a mental disorder until the mid 1970's.

  • ||

    Not sure if you're telling me that, McCann that or Mr. kumquat that. My post is agreeing with the good DJ above that the APA is more responsive to political pressure rather than evidence.

    I only commented on it because Mr. kumquat seemed to be repeating a pernicious red herring, popular among conservatives who dislike homosexuality, that it was removed because of political pressure, which conveniently ignores that for 20 years they had been ignoring evidence that it shouldn't have been on the DSM list of pathologies in the first place, which is why the political pressure became necessary in the first place.

  • Sevo||

    "I only commented on it because Mr. kumquat seemed to be repeating a pernicious red herring, popular among conservatives who dislike homosexuality, that it was removed because of political pressure, which conveniently ignores that for 20 years they had been ignoring evidence that it shouldn't have been on the DSM list of pathologies in the first place, which is why the political pressure became necessary in the first place."

    Jesse, I'm pretty sure I agree with you, but can you post this without three or four conditional clauses?
    Hey, it's Saturday evening; I had some wine with dinner.

  • ||

    The red herring is that it took political pressure, largely from gay activists to have homosexuality removed from the list of pathologies in the DSM. It's true, and that happened, BUT the reason for the political pressure was that the APA had left it on the list for 20 years after homosexuality had been shown to not be pathological.

    If you stop at the APA dropping it because of political pressure you can say "aha! see it should still be on the list, those homos are sick in the head." but if you take into account that 20 years of institutional failure to address evidence led to that pressure, that argument falls very very flat.

    (sorry for the late reply, I was out)

  • MelvinUdall||

    Reason - beclowning themselves and helping the Democrat Party yet again.

    Let's look at the suggested impact on law, all that should really matter:

    "We believe there should be no granting of special legal entitlements or creation of special status [...] we oppose any criminal or civil penalties against those who oppose [...] No laws or executive orders shall be imposed to limit or restrict access to this type of therapy."

    OH THE HUMANITY! Oh, wait...

    That sounds like protecting liberty and preventing forced inequality.

    So basically everything a libertarian should agree with, but Reason opposes it to show how enlightened they are.

  • ||

    Coming to the correct conclusion for the wrong reasons is heresy!

  • Sevo||

    Really don't like those icky gays, PM? The voices in your head says they're, uh, not like you, PM?

  • MSD62581||

    Ah, the intellectually lazy " the Bible also condones slavery" argument. First of all, the Hebrew word for slave, "eved," is derived from the root avad, meaning "to work." In Biblical times, slavery was seen as a more humane way to treat conquered armies and prisoners rather than mass slaughter. Also at this time, poor people would sell themselves into slavery as a way to prevent starvation or pay off debts. The charge for abolition was lead almost exclusively by Christians and slavery was abolished first in Christian lands. This was in direct contrast to anti-Christian writers like Edward Gibbon, David Hume and Immanuel Kant who defended slavery at the same time.

  • ABC||

    Apologize much?

  • ABC||

    Ad Hominem much?

  • MSD62581||

    Not an apology. Just a series of correct statements. Funny how you get those two confused.

  • Sevo||

    ..."In Biblical times, slavery was seen as a more humane way to treat conquered armies and prisoners rather than mass slaughter."...

    Yeah, and?

  • MSD62581||

    It wasn't quite as easy to be an abolitionist back then as many make it out to be. Considering that people were choosing slavery over starvation and debt and that prisoners and conquered warriors were regularly killed. In addition, its not like there was some kind of religion or a bunch of secular humanista who advocatwd for slavery's end.

  • toolkien||

    This is how the Republicans continue to lose the real political battles. All real issues that have proper "interest" for an individual are economic. This country is on the brink of economic/market/monetary collapse and the GOP continues alienating a sector of society, who just MIGHT be fiscally "conservative", to join ranks with the Other Party. At some point, when you base a large part of your platform on a collection of Faerie Stories, you're going to drive a goodly portion of people into the same ranks, setting aside the idiom that "enemy of an enemy may not be a friend, but - damnit - it's still the lesser of two evils". The GOP needs to get over the "queers are here" and worry about vital issues. The middle class has more than 50% of it's earnings/labor taxed/regulated/inflated away. Let's worry about that, and align all people who just might pissed off about that - regardless of color or orientation or whatever. In other words, be properly disinterested in how people conduct their lives and we just might align enough people to turn back the devastating economic/fiscal/monetary policies. But then again, I don't think that's on the GOP agenda anyway. Socially conservative and fiscally liberal (Statist). That's a whole lot of "no thanks" for me.

  • Michael Hihn||

    The middle class has more than 50% of it's earnings/labor taxed/regulated/inflated away.

    But the rich subsidize 35% of the entire tax burden of the core middle class ($40-99k) -- up from 25% before the Bush tax cuts.

  • Michael Hihn||

    Ooops. I meant the rich subsidize 35% of the entire federal income tax burden for that core middle class.

  • ace_m82||

    "However, people who have endured such "therapy" don’t paint such an innocent picture of it. In a 2012 op-ed for Advocate.com, Peter Gajdics describes his reparative therapy experiences..."

    Fascinating. I didn't know we based our science on anecdotal evidence.

    "the idea that it is an illness or disorder is almost universally dismissed by health organizations today"

    Fascinating. I didn't know we based our science on consensus. Also, I fail to see where the platform implies that it is an illness or disorder (simply that it is wrong).

    Now, I will not even bother trying to argue that this should be in a party's platform (it shouldn't). I also fail to see how this platform necessitates a violation of NAP.

  • ||

    Who suggested a violation of the NAP?

    Also, what do we base standards for psychological care on other than aggregate anecdotal evidence? It's not chemistry where you can have 30 beakers of Patient X and 30 pipets of talk therapy and see what works and what doesn't. Peter Gajdic isn't the only person. In fact reparative therapy advocates have had to radically change what they say they're capable of doing because every time they hold up someone as a poster boy for the movement they end up in a gay bar.

    This is a therapy without success stories. And the platform is a response to laws in other states meant to prevent desperate parents from putting their children in the hands of charlatans, some of whom are abusive and some of whom are just snakeoil salesmen.

  • ace_m82||

    "Also, what do we base standards for psychological care on other than aggregate anecdotal evidence?"

    Studies. With control groups. Or really anything other than anecdotal evidence.

    "This is a therapy without success stories."

    Except there are success stories. You just don't hear about them because you [A] don't look for them and [B] they don't get reported in the news you read. Neither of these are really your fault, but denying the fact doesn't stop it from being so.

    "And the platform is a response to laws in other states meant to prevent desperate parents from putting their children in the hands of charlatans..."

    If they are successful, then they aren't charlatans. Remember, if there is ANY success in gay aversion therapy, then a lot of people's worldview is instantly ruined. They will do anything to prevent that, usually starting with ridicule (Alinsky-style).

  • ||

    If they are successful, then they aren't charlatans. Remember, if there is ANY success in gay aversion therapy, then a lot of people's worldview is instantly ruined. They will do anything to prevent that, usually starting with ridicule (Alinsky-style).

    Do you have some success stories? I've undergone ex-gay therapy and have kept up on it. Femmy gay men who marry a butch lesbian only to eventually stray doesn't really make for a good success story. I know a few people who have practiced celibacy for decades and are anxious about their lack of human connection, but I don't consider that a success either.

    I'm also not sure I'd consider people who had a gay experience in highschool and freaked out about it thinking they were gay, who ended up having some therapy and then continuing on with their otherwise straight life "successful" conversion.

  • ace_m82||

    The Jones and Yarhouse study has longitudinal data.

  • ||

    Thanks for looking into that. I'll give it a look when I get a minute.

  • ||

    Just to be clear: aversion therapy is not what reparative therapists offer although some use it as part of their tool kit. If your idea of successful reparative therapy is shocking someone's genitals every time they see a man until they find the sight of men distressing, then you're a rather unpleasant person.

    Studies. With control groups.

    Please find me in another thread and show me some of these for reparative therapy. Again, my therapist was considered top notch in the field and all he had were anecdotal evidence of hard cases who were desperate and blamed their homosexuality for their troubles rather than poor life decisions. His anecdotes also lacked long term follow up.

  • ace_m82||

    "If your idea of successful reparative therapy is shocking someone's genitals every time they see a man until they find the sight of men distressing, then you're a rather unpleasant person."

    I wouldn't do such a thing, but if the person volunteers and can leave at any time... NAP isn't violated. The person chose it. But no, I'm not defending that (but none of my research showed such a thing was done, perhaps long ago).

    Yeah, as for control groups, not terribly likely in there kind of studies (been doing some studying). Also, kind of unethical in most cases. Still, those who want to change have a good chance of success.

  • Tony||

    When an overwhelming consensus of scientists agrees on something, we call that the truth, provisionally. You wanting to believe something despite what experts say is the exact opposite of science. In your defense, you're hardly the only one here who struggles with this.

  • ace_m82||

    How are your humors doing? Feeling sanguine? Maybe some bloodletting will make you feel better.

  • Cloudbuster||

    The sleight-of-hand in the gay marriage debate is the nature of the "rights" in question. The Bill of Rights is predominantly a charter of negative rights. All the rights enumerated in the bill of rights of this nature: the government protects whatever right in question by simply *not* doing stuff to you.

    There are no positive rights listed. Positive rights are "rights" where others are required to grant you something. They are popular in modern progressive Constitutions and U.N. charters: the "right" to health care (implies that someone has an obligation to provide you with health care whether they want to or not); the "right" to housing (implies that someone has the obligation to fork up the expense of housing you, whether they want to or not).

    Libertarians are usually opposed to positive rights, because they require compelling the labor of others in order to provide you the "right."

    Homosexuals already have the negative right of gay marriage. Just say "we're married." Nobody's stopping you.

    The problem is that in the U.S., being married comes with a whole lot of "gimmes" that the government is obligated to provide: tax status, social security benefits, inheritance benefits, health care benefits, property rights.

    All these are, if anything, positive rights, and can not be construed as the type of negative rights included among enumerated and unenumerated rights in the Bill of Rights.

  • Michael Hihn||

    Homosexuals already have the negative right of gay marriage. Just say "we're married." Nobody's stopping you.

    You said tnat IN PUBLIC? You're THAT confused on the issue here?

    The Christian Caliphate rejects what you properly call negative rights -- so they reject the 9th Amendment, as do Ron and Rand Paul.

    And you were doing so well until that.

    Oh yeah, do you ALSO deny all the anti-gay laws on the books -- in violation of the Bill of Rights, AND of negative rights???

  • Normajeana||

    "You need to be reminded where homosexual men stick their penis," he said. Hmmm, I wonder if this DOCTOR would want to remind RAPISTS where men stick their penis by having them get some menstrual blood and sniff it?

  • ||

    "the Bible also condones slavery."

    Texas probably would as well, if they could get away with it.

  • Michael Hihn||

    That was precisely Texas' problem with Mexico ... which had banned slavery (before the US did).

  • MacDaddy81||

    You mean besides the government being taken over by a dictator who ignored the 1824 Constitution and tried to evict settlers who had been invited to Texas by the government of Mexico?

  • Michael Hihn||

    You mean the 1824 Constitution which prohibited slavery in Mexico?
    The ban on further immigration to Texas from the United States ... because those immigrants also imported slaves, in direct violation of that same Mexican Constitution ... and Texas' refusal to honor the constitutional ban on slavery?

    And of course, the Texas Constitution explicitly allowed slavery, and the continued importation of slaves from the United States.

  • KRoyall||

    The decision by the APA to remove homosexuality from the list of mental disorders in the early 70's was a political one. It was not based on any new science or research. Even if the desire toward members of the same sex is innate, the choice to act on those urges is a choice.

    There are gay people who are not comfortable with the homosexual lifestyle and wish to change, why make it illegal for them to seek treatment? Not a very Libertarian point of view.

  • Michael Hihn||

    By what strange process do you conclude that anyone wants to make it illegal to seek treatment?

    The decision by the APA to remove homosexuality from the list of mental disorders in the early 70's was a political one. It was not based on any new science or research.

    Umm, 50 years on continual research, once they got past the hate-filled bigots who didn't want any research.

    Even if the desire toward members of the same sex is innate, the choice to act on those urges is a choice.

    So what?

  • ProLifeLibertarian||

    The Texas GOP is wrong on homosexuality, and I'm pretty certain they're wrong on war. But if they vehemently oppose abortion as much as I do, then they're better than the likes of Wendy Davis.

    And no, I never liked George Bush.

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  • Nothing Left to Cut? Congress can’t live within their means.
  • And much more.

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