All right, I'm done with longsuffering. Twice now some guy named "Chino Blanco" from Hong Kong has left comments on a few of my blog entries where I mentioned the whole Proposition 8 issue, effectively flaming me for my opinion and telling me I'm all wrong and should change. Well, I'm done with it. I prefer to be the nice guy, but sometimes you have to put your foot down.
Notice to this "Chino Blanco": I will now delete all comments you leave behind, so don't bother. To incite you to further anger, I'm going to tell you how I really feel on this topic. None of what you are about to read is the "party line" from my church, though it may sound suspiciously like it -- as it turns out, I feel the same way as the "party line" (so there!). Here goes, and I'm not going to soften it by any statements of "I believe" -- this is the way it is, as far as I'm concerned:
Religious: Marriage between a man and a woman is a special and sacred thing. Faithfully participating in and honoring this institution is absolutely required for anybody to receive the greatest blessings from God. A man is incomplete without a loving wife, as a woman is without a loving husband.
Social: Marriages between a man and a woman provide the foundation for successful societies by creating environments of safety, support, and well-being for both the man and the woman, and in which healthy families can be created. All children should be reared in a stable and secure home where both a mother and a father are present and supportive, and where children can learn to be fully responsible members of society.
Biological: Gay and lesbian behavior is deviant behavior that is not "normal" from any social, philosophical, or scientific perspective; and is a behavior that is just as distasteful and reprehensible to the human species as incest. It is not behavior that is "forced" upon fully rational people by the forces of genetics, but is rather elective behavior chosen by the participants. Where genetics may play a role in bringing forth the appetite to participate in this behavior, it is similar to other unacceptable behaviors, such as schizophrenia or other forms of clinical psychosis, that may deserve medical treatment.
You are entitled to your view, I am entitled to mine. The people will decide this issue in November in California, and, if the people choose poorly, the people will ultimately reap the consequences. This is not a belief of mine, but something that I know. The equalization of homosexual pairings with that of heterosexual marriages would have long-lasting and negative social consequences which would undermine the very safety and security of our civilization.
Religious: You either believe the Bible, or you don't. If you believe the Bible, homosexual pairings is a great sin. Of course, there are plenty of well-learned people who will get anybody wrapped around the axle as they go on about translation of words, what was really meant by such-and-such, and the historical context of the material therein. Nevertheless, I believe what it very clearly says in Leviticus 18:22:
Thou shalt not lie with mankind, as with womankind: it is abomination.
And in Leviticus 20:
If a man also lie with mankind, as he lieth with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination: they shall surely be put to death; their blood shall be upon them.
I do not mean by quoting this that I believe capital punishment is appropriate for those who engage in this behavior, as this was clearly part of the Mosaic Law where all manner of things were punished by capital punishment, but it does illustrate how seriously this behavior was treated in those times.
Not only do I believe the Old Testament in the Bible, but I believe the New Testament, where Paul severally indicated that homosexual behavior was wrong. One example is from Romans 1 where Paul is talking about those upon whom the wrath of God will rest:
And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet.
Not only do I believe the Old Testament and the New Testament, but I believe the modern-day prophets, as well. Indeed, it has been said here that, "The Church has a single, undeviating standard of sexual morality: intimate relations are proper only between a husband and a wife united in the bonds of matrimony."
This excludes all other forms. Period.
Social: It has been shown in study after study that children who come from two parent homes (regardless of the sex of the "parents") perform better in schools, are happier, and are more socially adjusted (i.e. having two "parents", regardless of their sex, is important). However, studies have also shown that children of same sex "parents" don't perform as well as their peers in the areas of math or language (see the research results of one Dr. Sotirios Sarantakos), are more likely to be singled out for bullying or isolation in school, are far more likely to be sexually confused, and, in adoption cases, are more likely to suffer sexual or psychological abuse at the hands of a "parent" (see results of Cameron and Cameron of the Family Research Institute).
Biological: Human beings are designed as a binary sex. It is how our species propagates. Significant genetic deviations from the norm are generally incapable of reproducing and are terminated by natural processes, typically prematurely as compared to the balance of the population. It has only been in the last several hundred years that humans, as a species, have been able to understand some of the natural processes involved in reproduction, and have been able to derive methods to treat or avoid a variety of genetic aberrations that lead to disease, disorders, or deformities. In addition, we have made great strides in helping those who can't reproduce through natural means.
The human race has a knack for compassion for those who, through the random throw of the genetic dice, end up with an unfortunate combination of DNA as compared to the rest of us. So it is that we care for those who are sick, deformed, and diseased; help those who really want to have children, and attempt to prolong the life of those that nature, of it's own volition, would terminate early.
Homosexual behavior, if it is indeed driven by genetic predispositions, is of this same order. It is a reproductive dead-end, as nature would have it, and nature would have it be so for the benefit of the human species as a whole. Humanity is learning tricks to circumvent this, with unknown ramifications for the future and potentially far-reaching consequences to the viability of our species as a whole. As a reproductive dead-end, however, this behavior would be clearly "wrong" from nature's perspective.
There are a variety of problems that are inherent in our genetics that do not manifest themselves physically, but instead arise socially or intellectually. For these, as a compassionate people, we find medications or other treatments that can help these people live more normal lives. Anti-social behavior of other types, such as a propensity to commit criminal actions like theft or violence, may be the result of a genetic disposition to perform these actions. Nevertheless, we do not excuse the thief or the murderer from their actions unless it is very clear that they are mentally incapacitated to the extent that they do not understand the difference between what society says is "right" versus what society says is "wrong", in which case we drug them and/or lock them up.
Homosexual behavior, if it is not driven by genetic predispositions, would then be a learned or a selected behavior, with the same consequences -- a reproductive dead-end. If this is the case, it then would fall under the same pathos of other deviant social behaviors that are worthy of medication and condemnation.
However, people don't really see it this way. I would not advocate locking up homosexual people for their behavior, any more than I would lock up the twelve-year-old girl who steals clothing from a store at the mall, or the homeless man who struggles with alcoholism. Are all of these examples of misbehavior the result of purely genetic predispositions? There may be something to that, but ultimately these people have their freedom of choice. As one columnist put it, they "are every bit as volitional as any other people. They are fully human -- and are fully accountable for all their choices and actions."
Nevertheless, while I wouldn't lock these people up or force them to take drugs, I do not condone or accept their behavior. And I never will.
Let it be known, however, that I do know and work with many people who are homosexual. I see them practically every day. I am not one of those people who are isolated along with others who are exactly the same as me -- I work side-by-side with them, I respect them, and I appreciate them. My personal views on their sexual behavior are mine alone, and I do not attempt to enforce my standards of morality upon them. Indeed, it never comes up. They know that I am a male married to a female, and together we have had several children; and we have silently agreed to mutually not discuss it.
Nevertheless, while I greatly respect them as people, it is inappropriate for them -- a social minority group -- to force upon the remainder of us, who subscribe to the more natural and traditional sexual lifestyle, concepts that are considered deviant by social norms. The State of California already provides all the legal rights and benefits of marriage to same-sex partners. The California Family Code includes wording that says that "domestic partners shall have all the rights, protections and benefits" of married spouses. There are absolutely no exceptions to this.
Yet it is that the gay and lesbian community wants to take something as precious to me as my marriage to my wife, and equate it to their socially- and biologically-deviant behavior. They already enjoy all the rights and privileges of marriage afforded to them by the State, but now they want to take that word, that precious word and institution of "marriage", which, in one word, describes natural human behavior since the dawn of time; and call it their own. This I can not let stand, and I will do my best to make it not be so.
So, Mr. "Chino Blanco", the voters will decide in November. I know how I will vote (Yes on Prop 8!), and I know how you would vote (but you're not even a California voter, I'd wager!). If the proposition fails in November, I have absolutely no doubt you will gloat and rise up in a pompous display, shouting from the rooftops that justice has been served. But if it succeeds, I will not; you will not hear me gloat. I will simply continue to go about my life quietly loving my wife and teaching my children and hopefully instilling within them a love of God and his commandments, one of the earliest of which reads:
Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh. -- Genesis 2:24