Call Me Queer

Submitted By: Mike Spindell, Guest Blogger

391px-Stonewall_Inn_1969As you know part of my contribution as a guest blogger has been the fact that I write much from personal experience. This particular blog is one that I’ve thought about for awhile and have had some trepidation in writing because as you will see it touches on a very sensitive topic for most males. As a boy coming of age in the 1950’s one of the unvoiced, but omnipresent topics was male homosexuality. For a male growing up in that period, among the most upsetting epithets you could be called was queer. This was especially disturbing for those entering puberty, which in the 50’s context was coming into the macho essence of your own self worth. If you were queer you were deemed to be less of a male, a wimp, a fag and most essentially a loathsome pervert who did disgusting things with other males. People were bullied and beaten at school while being called degrading names. Even though I was always big for my age, I was a gentle and sensitive boy and while when attacked I would always fight back, I would be throwing punches through tears of frustration and rage at the injustice of it all. As I cried and fought, all those demeaning epithets would be hurled at me by the jeering bystanders. If I had the temerity to be winning, then other boys would attack me from behind. Finally, a teacher or Administrator would break it up, many times though my rescuer would sneer at the fact that my crying was “unmanly”.

At the same time in the 50’s, stories would occasionally appear in the papers and TV, of police raiding homosexual nightclubs and arresting the participants for engaging in lewd acts. These stories were always couched in vague terminology since homosexuality was such a sensitive topic, indeed most discussions of sexuality in general were not considered decent topics for open discussion in the media. Even though my parents were very open about sexuality for the time and I was told the “facts of life” at a young age, they never discussed homosexuality with me. To be honest I never asked because my father was what you would call a “Man’s Man”, or “hale fellow well met”. He was large and had a history as a brawler in his youth. I wanted to be like him have his respect, so although I could ask him anything about sex, I never asked him about homosexuality. Taboo subjects interested me. The mystique surrounding homosexuality perked my interest.  Through reading and from Freud, I tried to get a handle on what this strange “perversion” was and why it was considered so bad that it needed the intervention of law enforcement.  My attraction was always towards women, but I wanted to understand why some men (and some women) were attracted to the same sex. There simply wasn’t enough information at the time to give me any sort of understanding and Freud’s position was among the least helpful. What I did know is that having been called queer and fag, knowing how it hurt, my empathy for those who were homosexual and how they were treated increased. It is the question of do you side with the oppressors, or the oppressed?  What moved me to finally write this piece was a story out of Louisiana in the Huffington Post. It is about the Sheriff’s Office in Baton Rouge, Louisiana that has arrested at least a dozen men since 2011 for agreeing to have consensual sex with undercover police officers. What makes this case so bizarre for these times, yet so familiar when its law enforcement dealing with homosexuality, is that they were arrested under a law that had been declared unconstitutional?

“In all of the cases, the men were arrested under the state’s anti-sodomy law, which was struck down as unconstitutional by the U.S. Supreme Court’s 2003 ruling in Lawrence v. Texas.

“Technically invalid yet still on the books, the state’s “Crime Against Nature” law prohibits “unnatural carnal copulation by a human being with another of the same-sex or opposite-sex or with an animal” along with “solicitation by a human being of another with the intent to engage in any unnatural carnal copulation for compensation,” according to Louisiana legislature.

“This is a law that is currently on the Louisiana books, and the sheriff is charged with enforcing the laws passed by our Louisiana Legislature,” Casey Rayborn Hicks, a Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman, told the Baton Rouge Advocate. “Whether the law is valid is something for the courts to determine, but the sheriff will enforce the laws that are enacted.”

However, the Advocate also revealed that none of these cases had been prosecuted by District Attorney Hillar Moore III, whose office could find no evidence of any crime being committed by any of the arrested men.

Obviously, District Attorney Moore had more common sense than the Sheriff’s Office that formulated the “sting”. The statement by Mr. Hicks is thoroughly disingenuous to say the least. Knowing the “law on the books” was unconstitutional they did it anyway as their way of harassing gay men and most probably because of their own distaste for homosexuality. Before SCOTUS rulings such as Lawrence v. Texas , all over this country the police were harassing members of the LGBT community. Some of this harassment was done because of the predominant religious mores of the particular community and some was done because by nature many police officers and District Attorneys in the U.S. see themselves as macho defenders of justice and more importantly public morals.

Even today when being Gay has been favorably portrayed in the media, when there are beloved Gay celebrities and when SCOTUS has ruled in favor of Gay Marriage, there are many who are horrified by the notion of homosexuality and consider it evil. Many of these people are in positions of power today and the vileness, to me at least; of their statements railing against the notion of Gay Rights proliferate even though those rights are now being recognized as Constitutional guarantees. Below are some links that will give you an idea of the amount of anti-gay bigotry that is hysterically increasing in the face of this country becoming far more accepting of people’s inherent right to their sexual preference.

There are many more quotations available, but let me point out that two of those links refer to people who were contenders for the GOP Presidential nomination and other was from a sitting Supreme Court Justice. Clearly the battle for the human rights of the LBGT community is far from over, even though much progress has been made. The fact is there are many in the United States that for religious reasons, personal prejudice and preference will keep battling against what seems to be a rising tide. I write this to emphasize that it is not time to rest in this issue which to me has an importance far beyond just the issue of who consenting adults have sex with. I have written before about the threat that religion of the extreme fundamentalist stripe creates towards the idea of democracy. . This blowback by religionists is taking place in many regions of the world.

“MOSCOW — A new law banning “homosexual propaganda” in Russia is raising concerns about the state of human rights in a country already notorious for silencing dissent.

The legislation is vague but its intent is clear: It is now “illegal to spread information about non-traditional sexual behavior” to minors (under 18), and there are hefty fines for those who disobey. Foreigners are also subject to fines and can be deported.”

This crackdown in Russia is now being pushed to further extremes and affects visitors there:

“In an even wider crackdown in Russia over expressions of homosexuality, gay athletes and fans will be prohibited from displays of affection and the wearing of pro-homosexual rainbow pins and badges during the 2014 Olympics. Violators face steep fines and jail time, foreigners will face similar penalties plus deportation.”

Much of this Russian zeal to crackdown on homosexuals stems from pressure coming from the Russian Orthodox Church upon Putin and other Russian officialdom.  In post Communist Russia the Orthodox Church has been a major player and has undergone a tremendous resurgence. It has definitely been an important political player and Putin et. al. have courted their support. The Russian Orthodox Church probably outdoes the Catholic Church in its opposition to homosexuality. However, homophobia in Russia has a long history and in 1933 Stalin also came down hard on homosexuals and led one of his characteristic purges.

“In 1933, Joseph Stalin added Article 121 to the entire Soviet Union criminal code, which made male homosexuality a crime punishable by up to five years in prison with hard labor. The precise reason for Article 121 is in some dispute among historians. The few official government statements made about the law tended to confuse homosexuality with pedophilia and was tied up with a belief that homosexuality was only practiced among fascists or the aristocracy. The law remained intact until after the dissolution of the Soviet Union; it was repealed in 1993.”

On Friday Professor Turley even posted a blog about the situation in Russia.

Another example of “legal” homophobia around the world are the attacks on homosexuals by various African Governments and the draconian penalties for being homosexual that are being imposed:

“More than two-thirds of African countries have laws criminalizing homosexual acts, and despite accounting for a significant percentage of new infections in many countries, men who have sex with men tend to be left out of the HIV response.”

As we can see there is still significant oppression of homosexuals around the world and I haven’t even gotten into the dangerous situations in many other countries for those who don’t meet the standard heterosexual criteria. In the U.S. Russia’s anti-homosexual laws have drawn praise from a source that seems a surprise, but then again maybe not a surprise at all:

As the hub of the Soviet Union, Russia was reviled for rights abuses by many U.S. conservatives during the Cold War. Now some are voicing support and admiration as Russian authorities crack down on gay-rights activism. The latest step drawing praise from social conservatives is a bill signed into law Sunday by President Vladimir Putin that would impose hefty fines for holding gay pride rallies or providing information about the gay community to minors.

“You admire some of the things they’re doing in Russia against propaganda,” said Austin Ruse, president of the U.S.-based Catholic Family and Human Rights Institute. “On the other hand, you know it would be impossible to do that here.” Ruse, whose institute is seeking accreditation at the United Nations, plans to travel to Russia this summer to meet with government officials and civic leaders. “We want to let them know they do in fact have support among American NGOs (non-governmental organizations) on social issues,” he said.

Among others commending Russia’s anti-gay efforts was Peter LaBarbera of Americans for Truth About Homosexuality.”Russians do not want to follow America’s reckless and decadent promotion of gender confusion, sexual perversion, and anti-biblical ideologies to youth,” LaBarbera said on his website.

In a sign of Russia’s evolving stature among some U.S. social conservatives, the Illinois-based World Congress of Families plans to hold its eighth international conference at the Kremlin’s Palace of Congresses in Moscow next year. Past conferences in Europe, Mexico and Australia have brought together opponents of abortion and same-sex marriage from dozens of countries.”

My premise is that the battle for the right to be of different sexual orientation is a subset of the battle to impose a religious based morality on people under the color of law. The issue of Gay rights is just one aspect of this threat. It has assumed almost a center stage in the battle to theocratize governments because for males all over the world, the idea of not being “man enough” hits at the core of their being. I reject the whole concept that a male’s self worth should be tied up in his sexual preferences and experiences. Many who have known me view me in macho terms. As the son of a “man’s man” I learned how to interact with other males and can talk sports, cars and women with the best of them. There is a swagger to my walk and with my height and large head many friends called and call me “Big Mike”. I played many sports and while never a good athlete I was competent as a player. Those who really know me best though see my more sensitive, feminine and in many ways better side. I’m a bit of a gossip; I love Broadway Musicals; loved Judy Garland and Peter Allen and I cry copiously in both joy and sorrow. Yes those are clichés used regarding Gay men, but these clichés apply to me as well.

I believe that for the human race finally to learn to live together peacefully and harmoniously we need to learn to stop making these distinctions about what is the natural state for perhaps ten percent of all of humans and indeed animals. Our sexual drives are complex and the need to satisfy our sexual urges is what drives us to interact with others. Sexuality needs to be viewed in its true sense as a spectrum of responses humans make in the search for pleasure and fulfillment. A good part of sexuality is curiosity and indeed one of the reasons humans have progressed so far is that we have an insatiable curiosity. This leads me to my own confession which I alluded to in the title and in my opening of this blog. In the 60’s and in the early 70’s I was an active participant in what was known as the sexual revolution. For the homosexual community the opening battle for their rights could be said to have occurred in the Stonewall Riots. I had many gay friends and acquaintances when those protests began on June 28th 1969. I even knew some who directly participated.

When news of the protests reached the media I cried in joy at the unity in fighting back against police repression and the corruption it engendered. In the following days I shared the sense of triumph coming from those protests with my Gay friends. To me looking back this was the opening shot of the fight for Gay freedom. Since I was so openly a supporter of freedom from oppression for the Gay community it was inevitable that a few years later one of my Gay male friends would proposition me. That this occurred was well known in my social group and there was good natured pressure on me to at least give it a try. This pressure arose partly because at the time I was involved in a ménage with two women and they playfully taunted me that what was good for the goose, was good for the gander. It was with much fear and trepidation that I took my male friend up on his offer. My experience was a good one and there was pleasure to be had, but it also confirmed for me that my sexual preference was for the female body. So it goes and it matters not if it had led me on a different relationship path. It was said back in the day that one could be a married man for years, but if a man had even one homosexual experience he was a queer. That is frankly nonsense and is believed by ignorant people. Admittedly I gave into peer pressure and in a sense I can’t claim that my experiment was one of courage, but I would also be lying if I denied that I was curious about the difference between gay and straight sex. The truth is that there is really very little difference except body structure and the limits that imposes. The underlying reality though is that normal human interaction between individuals doesn’t differ to any great degree and depends primarily on the personality of the participants. I look back upon my experiments in sexuality with warmth and a certain amount of pride that I was able to satisfy my curiosity along with the pleasure it brought.

However, that is not my point. What one does with their sexuality, provided it is consensual and among peers, is nobody’s business but that of the participants. One’s sexuality neither defines ones character, nor does it define one’s self worth. Those “paragons” of morality, who would call those whose sexual practices don’t conform to their own “evil,” are to my mind somewhat crazy. Why should any of us care how people get their pleasure as long as it harms no one?

In many places of the world, in many eras of civilization’s long history, religion has made sexuality a target of hatred. Some, but certainly not all religions target sexuality as a means of gaining political power. In many eras through history religion and government have had a symbiotic relationship, with religious belief being used to assist the powers that be in retaining their power and their positions atop a society’s hierarchy. We see in the Gospels of Christianity for instance a Jesus who disdains wealth, abjures the rich and would even break bread with those looked down upon by society. Jesus never once deals with homosexuality. Yet the Roman Catholic Church began under the control of the Roman Emperor and so the emphasis of Jesus strictures to “turn the other cheek” or the difficulties of a rich man getting into Heaven were downplayed and the Pentateuch’s sexual rigidity was brought to the forefront. I don’t mean to single out Christianity in this respect, because we see the same pattern existing in all great religions. Economic disparity and oppression are hard to justify morally and certainly would put any religion on a collision course with the elite’s power that they seek to share, so sexuality becomes an easy focus. Those with political power and wealth don’t mind sexual repression since it never interferes with their own pleasures and it certainly helps to keep the common folk down. Since most places throughout human history have been dominated by Alpha Males repression of homosexuality has found approval, but no more so than repression of women’s rights. The irony is that some of the most “Alpha” of males like the Spartan Army and Alexander The Great were probably gay, or at the least “Bi”. Then of course they were pagans and in many of those religions sexuality was of little import.

The prejudice against the LBGT community is a real evil that we face simply because it is a prejudice against the reality of human nature. To demonize people for their sexuality, their sex, the color of their skin or for their ethnicity is the real evil in this world. I support, nay demand, full citizenship rights for the LBGT community and if in your opposition to that natural state you want to call me queer, go right ahead, I’ll wear the mantle proudly.

Submitted By: Mike Spindell, Guest Blogger

525 thoughts on “Call Me Queer”

  1. DavidM says: you are doing here exactly what you did when you argued scientifically in support of someone’s claim that 78% of Americans are pro-choice.

    Yes, you are right, I am using logic to refute your silly claims. That is honest dialogue, you just do not like the outcome because it conflicts with your pre-conceived and bigoted notions.

    Homosexuality occurs naturally in over 1500 species, and in humans. That is science, all of your religious interpretation to the contrary. Whether that is a 10% error in a highly complex gestational system or serves some hidden evolutionary purpose is immaterial, it happens, and it is harmless.

    Your interpretation of what is “natural” is wrong, and even if it were right your awed reverence for what is “natural” is wrong: Nature is brutally unfair and unkind. Humans do not have to be.

  2. DavidM,

    Did you get dropped on your head once too many time? We’re you born this way or is this the phenomon of too much Inbreeding?

  3. DavidM: As science has proven, nobody is born gay.

    Science has not proven any such thing. Your interpretation of science is all you can point at, and as a research scientist with both formal statistical training and genetic analysis training in graduate school, I claim your interpretation is flawed and non-scientific.

    We do not understand the relationship between the genome and development in more than rough outline; we know not everything in our development is encoded in our genes; there are epigenetic factors, and apparently random environmental factors as well, and many of these are not a matter of choice at all but beyond our control.

    Why would it make a difference to us if somebody’s homosexuality is in their genes (and beyond their control) or a result of their fetal developmental environment (and beyond their control) or a result of the physical environment in which they were raised (and beyond their control)?

    It doesn’t. But it is quite apparent from brain studies under fMRI that when people are exposed to erotic images, the attraction (homosexual AND heterosexual) or lack thereof is not a conscious choice, the brain activity (and other measurable physical indicators, like blood flow, temperature and sweat reaction) that indicates sexual attraction is subconscious.

    If “born” is a synonym for “naturally occurring” then clearly there are people that are naturally homosexuals, just as the majority are naturally heterosexual. If you think that is “against natural design,” then your conception of natural design is simply wrong, you do not understand it as well as you think.

    1. Tony, or whatever your real name is, you are doing here exactly what you did when you argued scientifically in support of someone’s claim that 78% of Americans are pro-choice. This is not honest dialogue. Others here experience glee in such clever deceit. I do not.

  4. The “debate”, David, is that you insist you get to determine for others what constitutes “morality” based on a bronze age book of fairy tales. You don’t have a legal leg to stand on in justifying denying homosexuals equal rights and equal protection under the law. It has come to this point: The lady doth protest too much, methinks.

    You don’t like homosexuality? Don’t be a homosexual. Your personal problem solved right as rain for you. But you should learn that where your rights end is where others begin. Part of that is realizing that what goes on between consenting adults is none of your business.

  5. DavidM says: He does what feels good and so choice seems more fatalistic and innate. This seems to be the primary way of living for you as well as homosexuals.

    On the contrary; my rationality serves my emotions, so I do what I know will feel good and right in the future, and in retrospect. I rationally know that whatever I do, I will remember it, and I will have to live with it, so what I do I can do without future shame or regret. To the extent I can predict my own future feelings, which is to a great extent, I am successful at that.

    DavidM says: In contrast, a spiritual person lives above his animalistic tendencies.

    No, in contrast, a spiritual person lies to himself, forgives himself his sins and pretends it is forgiveness by a higher power, a spiritual person rationalizes his oppression of other people as being for their own good, or for the good of society when in fact it is to the detriment of it. Or when “good” is just redefined by the spiritual person to mean other people are coerced into acting in accordance with his wishes. Which of course, he will always deflect by lying to himself and others as the wishes of some mystical higher being.

    The medical facts are incontrovertible; the rational mind serves the emotional mind. But rationality was retained by evolution for a reason, and that reason is it moderates emotionality and improves survival and reproduction by doing so. The way it moderates emotionality is by predicting outcomes of actions before they happen, and those predictions are also processed by the emotional mind, so it has comparative situations to choose from, and can choose the most emotionally satisfying of them. Unlike dogs and cats and mice, the rationally minded animals can do more than react to their immediate feelings, they can react to their future feelings, as anticipated by the rational mind. The rational mind provides a longer term perspective. But the goal remains the same, emotional management.

    And that is how I live my life. My rational mind serves my emotional mind quite well, it protects it from emotional harms and finds opportunity for emotional profit.

    You fail to understand that relationship at your own peril. But then, you never have been able to grasp basic science or logic, so you are always in peril.

  6. @RWL:

    Who knows? It’s also the “locker rooms” of their choice. What was that movie, Porky’s??? The part that will probably cause a lot of backlash is, the kids can’t have gone through any surgery yet, so it is all just whatever they feel they are inside. Plus, boys on the girls sports teams.

    Squeeky Fromm
    Girl Reporter

  7. @RWL:

    Yeah, that oughta be a hoot. 1 Little Tommy Tranny isn’t comfortable going tinkle in the Boys Restroom. Which is something that must be fixed!

    Sooo, because of his discomfort, he gets to go tinkle in the Girls Room, which makes 99 girls uncomfortable going tinkle. Which is something that must be ignored!

    This is the kind of silliness that all the screwed-up gay gender stuff will result in. Which, will just chase more parents out of the public schools.

    Squeeky Fromm
    Girl Reporter

    1. Squeeky,

      Lol. You’re too funny. You are on the wrong blog, Squeeky. I am wondering how this is going to work. I am unable to find the actual law, and I would like Professor JT or any legal expert to provide a more indepth analysis of this bill, and whether or not this bill will hold up in the CA courts.

  8. BREAKING NEWS: Califorina Gov. Brown signed into law a bill allowing transgender students to play on sports team of their choice, and to use restrooms of their choice, fox news reporting.

  9. DavidM: For example, if you decided to be unfaithful to your wife, if you chose to dwell on her shortcomings rather than her strengths, and many other choices like these can lead you into a position where you suddenly find yourself not feeling like you love your wife anymore.

    But what makes you think that is a “decision?”

    There is no rational reason to choose to be unfaithful; there is no rational reason to dwell on her shortcomings. What great purpose would such rational choices be based upon? None. Cheating on my wife would be the result of a feeling, not a rational choice. Dwelling upon anything wrong with my wife would also be a result of a feeling, or lack of love, not a rational choice.

    Feelings are important, love is a feeling, and if dwelling upon such things would make me fall out of love with my wife, then doing so would be entirely irrational. Certainly not a reasoned choice.

    DavidM says: their love is as valid and real as anybody else’s love. I just perceive that their relationships are based more on lust than love,

    And once again you show your hypocrisy. As real and as valid as anybody else’s … but based on lust [so not as real and valid as anybody else’s].

    DavidM says: The erotic kind of love you talk about is a lesser kind of love that deals with feelings and emotions,

    ALL love deals with feelings and emotions. My love for my daughter is a feeling. It is not a rational choice. My love for my mother is a feeling, as is the love for my siblings and friends. I do not love my mother for a reason, and there is no reason that would make me not love her anymore. It is not a chosen act. I never made a choice to treat my wife or daughter the same as myself. You have it backwards. The urge to do that is a result of love, love isn’t the result of a decision to choose that.

    I cannot just go find some stranger in the mall, make a decision to treat them with the same concern and affection as I treat myself, and then suddenly feel love for them. That is ludicrous, and not how the mind works at all. We do not rationally choose to love somebody.

    1. Tony C wrote: “Cheating on my wife would be the result of a feeling, not a rational choice. Dwelling upon anything wrong with my wife would also be a result of a feeling, or lack of love, not a rational choice.”

      It seems that you see no distinction between a spiritual person and a carnal person. Someone who is carnal lives by his feelings and emotions. He does what feels good and so choice seems more fatalistic and innate. This seems to be the primary way of living for you as well as homosexuals.

      In contrast, a spiritual person lives above his animalistic tendencies. In the case of being tempted to cheat on his wife, he still has power over himself to choose not to do what his feeling or the temptress is pressuring him to do. You say people have no choice. I say they do. Homosexual activists put out there that they have no choice either. It is like the way liberals deal with alcoholism. There is nothing anyone can do about it. We just see it in different ways.

      Tony C wrote: ” if dwelling upon such things would make me fall out of love with my wife, then doing so would be entirely irrational.”

      It depends upon what your focus is. If you were able to see all factors and predict the future clearly, then you would be right, but our vision is not clear and so our decisions are rational only based upon certain factors, not all factors. You might dwell on her shortcomings based upon the rational choice and intention to help her change and become a better person. That would be a proximal rational choice. But in doing so, you may begin to think in ways that you had not anticipated. You may begin to be cognizant of just how many shortcomings she has, and this may lead you to think there are too many problems, and this may eventually lead you to think that you cannot be happy with this person. This is how deception works. Your choices led you to become this way. Looking back, you could have made different choices and had a different outcome.

      In sexuality, these choices are crucial. It is a reason that past generations made a big deal about virginity. Once going down the road of sexuality, it begins to shape you and your sexuality becomes very ingrained and difficult to change. Some say your sexuality eventually becomes impossible to change, but this isn’t entirely accurate because we know of many who have changed it.

      Tony C wrote: “And once again you show your hypocrisy. As real and as valid as anybody else’s … but based on lust [so not as real and valid as anybody else’s].”

      In order to see hypocrisy in me, you seem to be shifting the subject from being about relationships based on lust to being about love based on lust. That is not what I said, so there is no hypocrisy. Their LOVE is real and valid, when they have that love between them and many of them do. However, most of their relationships end up being focused more on lust than love. This is reflected in the high number of sexual partners they have and the lack of long term commitments. Heterosexuals who base their relationships on lust also suffer from the same problem. Take a promiscuous heterosexual and a promiscuous homosexual, and there will be little difference between them because they both base relationships and their sexuality primarily on lust. However, there are a higher percentage of heterosexuals who do not live this way. Because of the innate biology and natural function of sex toward reproduction and even the natural distinctiveness that coitus has as opposed to homosexual sex, and the complementary nature of the male and female bond as opposed to a same sex bond, the heterosexuals not given to promiscuity forge more long term relationships and more easily craft it based upon love rather than lust. Two homosexual men could have a very loving and beautiful relationship with another man, but when they introduce sexuality into it, it changes the nature of it into something different. The sexual activists want to claim that this something different is exactly what happens when a man and a women enter into marital relations with one another, but it is not. The problem is not unique to homosexuals either. Heterosexuals can fall into the same trap, having a good brother / sister type of close connection and friendship, then they introduce sexuality and the nature of the relationship changes. Obviously if they move that direction with the intention of marriage and creating children and a family, this could be a beautiful thing, but if their relationship is really one of friendship instead, they end up doing something wrong by introducing sexuality into the relationship.

      As I have said before, the debate is not really an equality debate with homosexuals and heterosexuals. It is a human sexuality debate concerning what is sexual morality and what constitutes sexual immorality. Obviously those who believe there is no such thing as sexual immorality are going to see it in a different way. As science has proven, nobody is born gay. It is a combination of inherited behavioral tendencies, environment and rearing, and cognitive functions involving choices and what they choose to think about..

  10. DavidM: Plus, I do not conflate love and lust, I recognize the signs of both. You claiming that I have conflated them is you claiming something you cannot possibly know, and the same goes for your claim of knowing how homosexuals feel about each other and that they are conflating the two: You don’t read minds, you cannot possibly know what they are feeling or if it corresponds to love or lust or both.

    By saying they have conflated the two, you are just implicitly asserting your preconceived notion that it is impossible for homosexuals to feel actual love for each other, which results in a circular argument: You just know they cannot feel love, therefore what they claim is love cannot be love, therefore you think they have made a mistake of thinking their lust is love. But you are wrong, the problem is in your assumption. They also know the difference between love and lust, you are not the final judge of what is love and what is not, your egotistical implicit assertion that you are notwithstanding, and what they feel is actual love for each other.

    If anybody here is not feeling actual love it is you, since by your claim it is your rational choice. Love is not something turned on and off by rational choice; I cannot wake up and say that henceforth between 12 and 4 I will no longer feel love for my wife.

    1. Tony C wrote: “You claiming that I have conflated them…”

      I’m not making a claim. It is my perception. I could be wrong.

      Tony C wrote: “By saying they have conflated the two, you are just implicitly asserting your preconceived notion that it is impossible for homosexuals to feel actual love for each other…”

      No, I have never claimed that they cannot feel actual love for each other. The actual love between two homosexual partners is very real. I have said this many times, and their love is as valid and real as anybody else’s love. I just perceive that their relationships are based more on lust than love, but they use the same word love to describe both. I base that on the biological constraints indicating why they have sex (not to raise a family, not to produce children, etc.) and statistics regarding gay promiscuity (e.g., about one-fourth of them having had over 1,000 sexual partners). Incidentally, the situation with female homosexuality is very different than male homosexuality. They probably should be treated differently.

      Love has to do with wanting what is best for someone else. When you treat someone else with the same concern and affection that you have for your own self, that is love. This kind of love describes the love that exists between a father and daughter, between neighbors, as well as between a husband and wife. The erotic kind of love you talk about is a lesser kind of love that deals with feelings and emotions, and it is more related to lust. I think a lot of sexual deviation is related to people confusing the appropriate role of sex when you really care for someone. Clearly you have a different way of looking at it. I’m just sharing something about how I think differently about it because when words are thrown around and they mean one thing to you and something different to me, we are very likely going to misunderstand one another. Perhaps you need to change your understanding of love, or perhaps I need to change my understanding, but this is the way it is right now.

      Tony C wrote: “I cannot wake up and say that henceforth between 12 and 4 I will no longer feel love for my wife.”

      I understand what you mean here, but you are describing a situation where there has been a reciprocal effect involving multiple factors. Although there is not a single choice in an instant of time to change yourself this way, I am pretty sure you understand how your choices can create an eventual lack of love for your wife. For example, if you decided to be unfaithful to your wife, if you chose to dwell on her shortcomings rather than her strengths, and many other choices like these can lead you into a position where you suddenly find yourself not feeling like you love your wife anymore.

      It seems to me that defining love as that feeling conflates the kind of love that should exist in family relationships like parents to children, siblings to each other, and between spouses. There is an aspect of that love that is rational and stems from a decision that regardless of how I feel, I will do what is best for this person because I am committed to this relationship. Making the right choices here will lead down a path where I also feel that secondary kind of love even stronger than before. It is a love that seems innate and ingrained and part of my very soul.

  11. DavidM: No, he doesn’t. And if he thinks he does, he is just lying to himself. Destroy his emotional centers with cancer and his mind will be completely lost; it has been done more than once by brain tumors.

  12. DavidM: Love is an emotion and a feeling. Those are not rationally chosen. One does not choose to love and one cannot choose to not love; just as one does not choose to be sexually attracted to the same gender or a different gender.

    You have your entire theory of the mind bass-ackwards; the rational mind serves the emotional mind, and the emotional mind is the final arbiter of all decisions. In people that have lost their emotional processing centers through disease or accident, but have their rational mind intact, they will spin rationalizations for hours over the most trivial of decisions, like which shirt to wear, because such decisions are ultimately referred to the emotional centers to decide what it likes.

    But without emotion they do not get bored, they do not see their endless rationalizations as being ludicrous, they do not want to do anything else, they do not worry about being late, they do not feel shame or embarrassment at not making a decision or wasting time.

    That is because the rational mind is a servant to the emotions, it is not the master of the emotions. The best it can do in terms of “control” is convince the emotional mind to forego one action due to the future emotions that action will generate: e.g. Do not hit this guy, you will end up in jail, lose your job, and you will regret it. The emotion of significant future regret can trump the emotion of immediate anger gratification.

    That is how the mind works. Any love you feel for your wife is not your rational choice, you are rationalizing your choice after feeling the emotion.

    I love my wife. That is a feeling I have, there does not have to be a why, or a “what I love about my wife.” It does not have to be rational or reasoned. I am in love, and I have been for 25 years, and I expect to be for the rest of my life. It is something I feel, not something I decided.

    1. Tony C wrote: “the rational mind serves the emotional mind…”

      Only in the carnal person. A spiritual person has his emotions and other carnal desires subservient to his mind.

  13. David M:

    no and I am not assuming Idaho is 100% white.

    that NBC article I linked to says black births to unwed mothers is 72% of all births if I read it right.

  14. DavidM: The SCOTUS wrote that in New York state not long after independence, the area had not a single case of divorce in over 100 years. Such indicates how much we have changed in regards to our value of marriage.

    No it doesn’t. “Not long after independence” women were subjugated, without rights, without jobs, and essentially the property and slaves of their husbands; both for labor and sex, and had been so for hundreds of years.

    Your statistic is invalid, you might as well be quoting the number of black slaves that filed against their owners to end that relationship.

    This doesn’t reflect how we have changed in how much we value marriage, it reflects what happens when women gain some equality and can fend for themselves and work on their own and do not need a husband or male relative to get a loan or credit card or bank account, or permission to get a job or an education. It reflects what happens when only the wealthiest women (by inheritance) in the country have any actual autonomy.

    This claim of yours is either ignorant or purposely misleading. If anything changed about “how we value marriage,” it is rejecting the “value” that women can be forced by society to both marry and remain in a marriage with somebody they never loved and do not like, and be forced to bear their children. Divorces under such circumstances were typically male choices to divorce infertile women so they could remarry and have children.

    If the implicit endorsement in Revolutionary-era marriage of slavery and subjugation of women is what has changed, then good riddance.

    1. “The SCOTUS wrote that in New York state not long after independence, the area had not a single case of divorce in over 100 years. Such indicates how much we have changed in regards to our value of marriage.”


      Using this is really the height of ignorance. NY State had one of the most severe divorce laws in the country. So much so that in the early 1960’s the wife of NY Governor Nelson Rockefeller had to take up Nevada residence for 6 weeks in order to get a mutually agreed upon divorce.

  15. VV: If my friend tell me he is going to commit suicide, I will try to talk him out of it. But I believe suicide is both a Right and the correct and appropriate rational response in certain situations, the best choice for the individual, their friends and family and children, and society at large. If my friend is in such a situation, I will do my best, within the law, to provide aid and comfort in his final days. Life is finite, and for many of us the day will come when we have contributed all we will, had all the happiness and adventure we are going to have, and what remains is pain, expense, and imminent death anyway. In such circumstances I think suicide can be a courageous choice and the final altruistic contribution of the individual to those they love, to minimize the misery and pain (physical and emotional) of waiting for the end, and to preserve for their inheritors assets better used to aid those with long lives yet to live, instead of selfishly wasting them on a few more weeks of consciousness.

    That is my opinion, and I don’t demand those fearful of death share it. But like quitting a job, ending a business or ending a marriage, I do not think all choices to end something are automatically bad choices. They can be good choices, particularly when the cause of the choice is not something that can be healed or reversed or undone.

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