So for a man to want to have himself held in an intimate passionate lip lock embrace with another man and have his junk spammed by another dude is way out of bounds from the natural perspective as how men are wired.
I guess I don't understand what you mean by "normal." Do you mean "average"? It certainly is the case that the average man is straight, not gay. But there's no moral precept I'm aware of that says we all have to do what the majority is doing. In fact, often the opposite is valued - going against the grain, being different, etc. I mean, if we look at it your way, what else isn't "normal"? Having blond hair? Most people don't. Being caucasian isn't "normal"? Your average person isn't. Living in America isn't "normal"? Most people do not.
You sound like you're appealing to some standard that exists in nature, but we know that homosexual animals exist in just about every species we've looked at, so its pretty obvious that you're simply referring to the Biblical standard when you say "natural" or "normal."
Some people are straight, and when they have straight sex, that's normal. Some people are gay, and when they have gay sex, that's normal. You can't say that what gay people are doing is "contrary to nature", because the nature of a gay person is to be gay (in addition to whatever other natures they have), to be sexually attracted to the same sex. What's unnatural is a gay man having sex with a woman, for instance.
So to have two men bonding with each other in this way is just creating all kinds of twisted craziness within the wiring of God's handywork.
Ah, right, but lesbians are ok. Why do the Christians always pick on the gay men? Everybody loves lesbians, that's my theory.
Well it is because it is sin, but not because it is correct or morally right, but once you get rid of Biblical morality and replace it with human wisdom, you get the worst of human behavior being thrust on the planet as liberty and freedom.
Gay sex is the worst of human behavior? Silly me, I thought that was rape, or murder, or child abuse. I guess those things aren't nearly as bad as two men doin' it.
Go into your local home improvement store and and grab a piece of 4x8 plywood and ask to have it cut in third's. After the guy finishes and you have it loaded onto the cart, reach out and put your hand around the top of his arm just below the deltoid and then look into his eyes and thank him.
Go to France, or many Muslim countries. Be introduced to another male that you have not met before.
Lean forward and kiss him on one or both cheeks. Write us back with a description of his response. Very likely, he'll simply return the gesture and think you're a pretty friendly guy ("unlike most Americans", he'll say to himself.)
A fight-or-flight response physical contact with another man is not "normal"; its unique to our prudish culture. The normal response is not to react defensivly to contact that is friendly in nature.
So saying that homosexuality appears in many spieces of animals making it perfectly acceptable for humans doesn't get much play from a Biblical perspective.
But, supposedly, it wasn't the Biblical perspective from which you were arguing at that point, or to which I was referring. Supposedly, it was the natural perspective from which you were speaking. Or did I misread?
I have no argument against the Biblical perspective. If you believe that the Bible tells you that homosexuality is a sin, I don't really care. I certainly don't accept the Bible as a legitimate authority on moral mattters, but that's not the subject of our discussion.
It is perfectly natural for a gay man to have sex with a woman.
No, it's completely unnatural - i.e., it's against his nature. He's gay, after all. It's as unnatural as you or I betraying our own natures and having sex with men.
This function has no purpose between two men.
The function is pleasure, which is the same function of the vast majority of sexual activities between human beings. An adult should not have to be told this.
I don't know the psychological components that precipitate the behavior, but nobody is born a homosexual.
This is nonsense; it's certainly directly contradicted by the science. I'm certain that you wish this was not so, but the majority, if not all, of homosexual persons are born that way.
Not the "Lesser" vessele. The weaker one.
Weaker is lesser. Nice of you to try and wave away the inherent sexism of your faith, however.
In all families that are running on all 8 cylinders, ther is a very capable and tremendously self sacrificing woman behind the scenes who is the power behind the success. And if the husband is doing is role properly, he is the visible body who also enshrines and protects the engine of the family, the woman/mom.
That's touching, but it certainly doesn't describe my family, in which the man and the woman hold equal roles; and my family is certainly "running on all cylenders."
And you certainly haven't addressed any of my points about "nature" or what is "natural." It appears that you've defined "natural" as "what straight men do", which means that your conclusion that "homosexuality is unnatural" is a great big useless excercise in circular reasoning.
If that is the custom, then the contact method is processed through the brain the same as a handshake.
Which means its natural.
But go and grap the same man outside of a greeting, say walk up without the greeting and reach out and clasp him while asking a question, and he will flex, naturally.
Right. Because you're not being friendly; you're being agrresive and possibly belligerent.
Not because men are equipped with an inherent aversion to touching each other, or being intimate with each other.
Have a woman do that, and if she is feminine in her personna, he will not tense up and flex.
No, he will. People get tense when you seize them and interrogate them intensly, as you describe, regardless of the sex of the interogator.
That's what your subjects are responding to - the agression and belligerency of the gesture, not the physical contact of a man and a man, or a woman and a man.
As far as muslim countries backing legitimacy for homosexuality based on their greeting customs
I don't recall making that argument. Of course Muslim countries are violently oppressive to homosexuals; that's the reason why they don't feel any shame about men kissing each other in greeting. The idea of your average Muslim man being gay is as alien to their culture as the idea of your best friend being a pedophile is to you.
It just doesn't cross your mind, so you don't think twice when your friend takes his 9-year-old daughter down to the beach; homosexuality is so deviant in the Muslim world that it just doesn't cross a man's mind when he's kissing his best friend on the cheek.
you'ld better hope that we win this war over there because muslims will not take the time to establish a dialog with you on homosexuality as they are cutting your arms off.
There is currently no knowledge on where and when people "become" homosexual and so whether people are born homosexual.
If there's no indication that there's a time when a gay person "becomes" gay, then its pretty obvious to me that the reasonable conclusion is that they were born that way.
I was born straight, in so much as an infant can be said to have a sexual preference. We don't balk at this construction for straight people, so I don't see a reason to deny it for gay people.
Your corrections are noted but I don't find them compelling. And not that you intended to, of course, but your corrections don't support the opposite view - that people are caused to become gay by some quirk of their upbringing. Were that true, there would be no gay people - our society has, for many many generations, done all it could do to prevent homosexuality in people. Yet, there have been gay people for as long as there have been people.
Real life events can condition people to be, or at least to conduct and enjoy, homosexual acts.
Like what people?
Weaker is not lesser, unless the only attribute you judge quality of people is physical.
It's not clear to me how you so drastically misinterpreted the context of this element of the conversation between LB and me to conclude that we were discussing physical strength. LB's comments alone should have been enough to indicate that it was spiritual or moral weakness to which LB was referring.
There is no sexism in noting that the female gender is in general weaker than males.
Morally weaker? Spiritually weaker? I would definately describe those as sexist positions.
There is no indication that there's a time when an English speaking person becomes English speaking.
Sure there is - their first word. My first word was "hot." I had touched a stove and burned myself. (Not a bright kid, really.)
But here's the thing. While you have to have spoken English at some point to be considered a speaker of English, we regularly ascribe sexual preferences to persons who have never had sex; to persons who are not even sufficiently physically developed to be capable of sexual intercourse. A significant number of gay persons report knowing that they were gay, or at least different, long before they had anything approaching sexual desires or feelings.
Now, there's no known convergencies in the environmental histories of gay persons at that early age that would explain why they're gay. There's a significant weight of evidence for a genetic basis for homosexuality, in males at least.
And I'm supposed to take seriously the idea that "we don't know that people are born gay"? C'mon, already. There's more than enough data for us to come to a tentative conclusion. Unless you're already ideologically committed to the idea that our sexual preferences are entirely a matter of choice, not heredity.
That's also far from obvious.
Then I guess you don't read the papers, or something? Seems to me to be pretty obvious indeed that, were there a way to avoid having a gay child, we'd have figured it out during the 2000 years where we were hating gay people and disowning gay children.
Already holmes has agreed that it is not a matter of choice. We simply don't know what environmental circumstances might encourage or discourage homosexuality.
The idea that all gay people were born in environments that are substantially different than straight people is a myth. You know what? You can raise two kids in exactly the same way, and one will turn out straight and the other gay. There are plenty of gay people who were raised exactly the same way as straight people, and do you know what? They turned out gay anyway.
The only reason to conclude that environment and not heredity is responsible is out of a prior ideological committment to deny a hereditary basis to sexual orientation. There's absolutely no evidence that there's a certain type of environment that will result in a gay child. On the other hand, there's a lot of evidence that there's a hereditary component to sexuality, so much so that this is the overwhelming consensus view of science.
But, hey, you tell me who you're going to believe.
Yet if, at the time of that first word, you were adopted by Chinese parents, taken to China, and brought up where only Chinese was spoken, you would likely have turned out to be a Chinese speaker and not an English speaker.
More likely, I would be at least partially bi-lingual.
However, we don't do this arbitrarily. Presumably we base it on observed behavior.
Presumably? How about you check on that and get back to me.
That this is unknown does not prove that there is no environmental involvement.
No; what it proves is that your side of the argument is an argument constructed entirely on ignorance.
On my side there is evidence; on your side, none. To reasonable people that's enough to settle the issue, at least tenatively.
I won't comment on the rest of your post, except to say that it is mostly a rant.
I've described the consensus view of the scientific community, which you would attempt to overturn on the basis of, what exactly? Certainly no evidence as far as I can tell from your posts.
If you want to call that a "rant" so that you can ignore it, that's fine with me. You've more than made my point for me.
That would be wrong. That is an argument from incredulity.
No, Holmes, that's called "looking at the evidence and coming to a conclusion."
You know, what people do when they're approaching something rationally.
Genetics has pretty well been ruled out as a sole arbiter of orientation and so no one can be "born" gay, because of that. Perhaps gestational environment can heavily influence this, and so be born with a general guide to preference, but culture and experience will still shape you.
And, yet I repeat, there's no coherent model, no known influence that is a reliable predictor of future homosexuality. Your side asserts that just because we can't find it doesn't mean its not there.
I'm telling you that because you can't find it, there's no reason to take your side seriously yet. When you can come back with a coherent model of how experience shapes sexual preference, which takes into account the fact that many homosexuals had exactly the same experiences as many straight people, then we'll have something to talk about.
You're right that the lack of evidence doesn't mean that your position is wrong; the problem is that, as yet, there's no reason to believe that your position is right, either.
Here's an experiment you can run. Stop having sex with females and masturbating to female images. Try hanging out in exclusively male, and perhaps homosexual environments. I give you two months at most before you are tempted to try it, perhaps 6 before you totally give in. If you enjoy it, you will want to continue from time to time, even if your primary urge remains for women.
So, what you're saying is that (for instance) prisons make people gay? The phenomenon is known as "situational homosexuality" and contrary to your assertion, there's little evidence that persons who engage in same-sex activity in such a situation continue it after the situation changes.
If you are designed to be weaker then you are not necessarily lesser.
I can see some merit in your argument, but if all other things are equal - which I grant you may not neccessarily be the case - if you're weaker in one area, and only equal in all the others, then by simple addition, you're the lesser one.
You said that if we have no evidence one way or the other, it is rational to draw a conclusion.
But that's not the situation at hand. We have abundant evidence on one side, and a lack of evidence on the other. That's the situation, and drawing a conclusion from that situation - that the former side is probably right and the latter side probably not - is how rational people come to decisions.
The argument from incredulity is an argument that proceeds from a premise that a proposition is not credible. That is not what I have done.
What I have done is provide an argument for why I find your position to lack credibility.
You asked me for it, I gave it to you, you totally skipped over it in this reply in order to reassert your claim.
Really? Because I'm looking for it in the three rounds of posting we've done so far, and I don't see where you did that. I see where you asserted that evidence had been provided, and I see where you're asserting that again right now, but I don't actually see the evidence.
There is evidence that most will NOT continue engaging in homosexual activity, but some will. One is enough.
Only because you and NMR are talking about something different than I am. You're referring to homosexual acts, and you're quite correct - no gene in the world can make you do a homosexual act if you don't want to.
But I'm talking about preference. You've described a situation where people have no option but homosexual activity (or no activity at all) and so it's no surprise that we see persons not predisposed to homosexuality perform homosexual acts. The question is not what they do; its what they have a preference for.
And now you act like a single person who continues to occasionally engage in homosexual acts proves that you can be "trained" to be gay. But obviously it doesn't - that person to which you refer is bisexual. Remember that word? It refers to someone who engages in sex with both men and women. Can you give me a single example of someone who enjoyed sex with women who went into prison, or boy's school, or a rugby team, or whatever, and came out as someone who refuses to have sex with women and instead prefers only sex with men?
Think maybe this is indicative of something.
Yes. That we have a need for sexual enjoyment and release, and we're willing to make compromises in compromising situations in order to obtain that release.
The fact that you can admit there is such a thing as "situational homosexuality" and still hold on to your theory that people are born gay is a bit surprising. That inherently means there are other ways than "nature" to become gay.
No. Not to "become gay" - to have homosexual sex.
You and NMR continually conflate the two, but I don't see any valid reason for doing so. I kissed a guy in college, but it was to further my chances with an attractive woman. It was a homosexual act done by a heterosexual. Raping a lesbian doesn't make her straight, or even bisexual. Her (unwilling) participation in a heterosexual act doesn't mean she's not still a homosexual.
Again, you didn't even address cultures where men are expected to engage in homosexual activity and so have a higher rate.
Situational homosexuality. Cultural pressure makes people do things that they wouldn't otherwise choose to do based on their own preferences.
Seems obvious to me.
Let me introduce an additional argument. If human sexual preference is environmental and not congenital, why are the strongest predictors for eventual homosexuality physical and not situational or experiential?
That's your scientific evidence? Gore Vidal? Color me not impressed.
Well this is not exactly true. Check through the cultural breakdown on homosexuality. You will discover that situational certainly does play a part in homosexual expression and activity
No, it is exactly true. And your response doesn't seem to indicate that you understood the question. The significant predictors of whether or not a human being will be homosexual are things like finger length, genetic history, etc - and not things like child sexual abuse, drug use, foster situations, or other environmental situations.
Why would this be the case if sexual orientation were environmental? If it's environmental, why is it that the most accurate predictors can be assessed long before environment has had a chance to operate?
Look, you've made a sterling case, and I definately overstated the claim to say that we're born into our orientation. Clearly environment has a role to play in shaping experience and development. But its clear that the most significant influences are congenital, and I'm guilty of nothing more than oversimplifcation to assert to LB that people are born gay. Call it a shorthand, if you will, to avoid the enormous scope of dialog in the scientific community about influences on human behavior; a dialog that itself is many orders of magnitude larger than the piddling little discussion I was having with LB over whether or not it's "right" for gay people to have gay sex. The fact that he'd rather talk about that, and ignore the amazing depth of the question of the origin of human behavior, is simply further confirmation of the small-mindedness of the Christian moralist.
I made a mistake to assert that people are born gay. I should have refuted LB's erroneous assertion with the complicated truth, not the simple generalization. But that truth is way beyond the scope of the argument I was having with him, and I hope you'll agree that my basic point stands - claims that gay sex is "unnatural" are incoherent; nothing is more natural than people having the sex that they enjoy and want to have.
One caveat, Xians can use another sense of the word "natural" that we generally would not use and then they would be correct. This is sort of complex, and yes it is semantics, though it is 100% correct. The problem of course is that Xians usually equivocate.
LB seems to have bailed from the discussion, because it was my hope to plumb exactly what he meant by "natural", since in a statement like "it's neither natural nor Biblical", it's incoherent to be operating under a definition of "natural" that means "Biblical." It's circular.
It seemed like what he meant by "natural" was "what most people do", but such a definition obviously doesn't support his points.