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Friday, April 11, 2008

Gay Rights

Once again the issue of Gay Rights has become a topic of conversation but not much is said about what those specific rights are. Those supporting them maintain that homosexuals should have the same rights as heterosexuals – not an unreasonable position one would think. But those opposing the position of Gay Rights feel that the hidden agenda is to force the acceptance of homosexuality as “normal”. The definition of normal is “the usual condition, level, or quantity” and the essential position of those opposing Gay Rights is that homosexuality is “abnormal” but I don’t think this position holds up under scrutiny. Then there are those who oppose homosexuality because it is expressly forbidden in both the Bible and Koran and thus not within God’s Law.

On the secular side we have the Darwinists who maintain that man is descended from a common ancestor with the ape and thus nothing more than an intelligent animal, but an animal nonetheless. An observation of the animal kingdom shows that homosexuality is present in animals. Admittedly it is not widespread but it is present and thus it can be considered normal in the sense that a certain percentage of animals are homosexual. Given that man is an animal then homosexuality is a normal condition for a certain percentage of the population but what the evolutionary purpose is remains a mystery. The argument seems to be that homosexuality cannot be normal because if it were the species would die out, but of course this hasn’t happened so there must be some other unknown purpose. However, the fact is that homosexuality is found in animals as well as in man and that it has always been thus and will probably continue to be so and therefore, this is a normal condition relative to the species.

But then there are those who maintain that man is not descended from the apes but is a direct creation of God and the Creator has expressly forbidden any deviant sexual practices including homosexuality. Of course what is not explored in any detail among all of this rhetoric is all of those deviant practices, which include masturbation. So the argument seems to rest not on the practices forbidden by God other than homosexuality. However, if God made us all and he made us in different colors and different sexes then He also made homosexuals. If all of God’s creations are perfect – in the sense that He made them – then homosexuals are normal, are made by God, and His purpose is unknown. Perhaps God made homosexuals as a test in tolerance and forgiveness for those who are now persecuting them. Whatever, His reason, there is no doubt but that homosexuals are normal in the sense they have always been a percentage of the population both in man and in the animal world.

But the Bible (and Koran) is God’s word and they specifically forbid homosexuality. Of course neither of these holy books was written by God even though they are published as the word of God. Both books were written by men long after the events described in them and rarely – if ever – written by anyone who had a direct contact with God. Therefore, whether or not God has forbidden these sexual practices or even the dietary restrictions included in these holy books can only be described as arguable. And this brings us to the issue of Gay Rights – precisely what rights are we talking about?

When all of the sound and fury is ignored it seems that we are really only talking about two “rights” and those are the right to marry and the right to serve in the military, all other rights seem to spring from these two. The right to marry seems to be covered under the Constitutional guarantee for equal rights under the law. Now it can be argued that “marriage” is a sacred institution and thus protected under the Freedom of Religion guarantee so in effect we are only talking about semantics. It seems the state cannot deny the right to marry or to issue a marriage license due to equal protection so in effect all that needs to be done is to define a Secular Marriage – in effect a civil union and a Sacred Marriage – one conducted in a religious ceremony. This seems like a simple solution and to deny same sex unions seems to violate the Constitution.

The issue of Gays in the military is a much thornier one. The reality is that Gays are already in the military and have always been in the military. In fact the Macedonian Army under Phillip II had a “Sacred Band” of 300 soldiers composed entirely of homosexuals and this elite unit was the equivalent of Phillip’s Special Forces who were deployed in front of the Phalanx and acted as the shock troops. This is one historical example but homosexuals have been in every army since there was an army – including the American Army. If you accept the common estimate that 7% of the male population is homosexual and another 15% are bisexual then an estimate of 20% of all males have homosexual tendencies seems logical. A military division consists of between 10,000 and 15,000 men so this would indicate that at this very moment there are between 2000 and 3000 homosexuals on active duty in every Army Division. And this does not seem to be a problem with discipline or morale.

But there is an even greater issue here and that is the equal rights issue. Heterosexual soldiers are allowed into the military so to deny homosexuals into the military seems to be a clear case of discrimination based on sexual orientation. The counter argument seems to be that Gays can serve as long as they remain celibate but this restriction isn’t placed on heterosexual soldiers so this also appears to be a clear case of discrimination based on sexual orientation. Clearly the rules should apply equally and they do not, instead the homosexuals are being discriminated against solely on the basis of their sexual orientation. If they were applying for a job or membership in a club, they could not be denied and the state would support their claim of discrimination so the government’s position relative to the military is hypocritical at best and outright discrimination at its worst. The policy of "Don't Ask Don't Tell" is totally ridiculous and this restriction on homosexuals should be lifted because it is clearly unconstitutional.

1 comment:

Coye said...

People should read this.