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Please, please, PLEASE — be my straight best friend!

Rob Tisinai

May 1st, 2014

The Public Discourse is a publication of the Witherspoon Institute (which financed Regnerus) and it has an odd pattern of inviting gay authors to talk about how much it sucks to be gay. These articles are accidentally revealing — I mean, brutal self-portraits if you read between the lines.

For instance, Doug Mainwaring is a gay dad who makes it clear he shouldn’t be a dad at all. Robert Oscar Lopez is an opponent of same-sex parenting who reveals he doesn’t understand same-sex parenting. And now Richard G. Evans is a celibate gay Catholic who inadvertently tells us how awful that celibate life is.

His article describes how he desperately needs Godly straight folk to befriend him.

I returned to the Church after thirty-five years away and was finally confirmed at age fifty. That night, I suppose I expected to be walking on both air and water. Stepping inside my empty apartment and realizing that I could either order take-out or not eat at all was too much for me. I felt forsaken by God, family, and friends, even though I knew that no one intentionally abandoned me. Especially not God! Still, the pain was there and acutely real.

Those who are blessed enough to be married and have families of their own can sometimes forget that those of us called to be celibate and permanently single still have a great need to connect with “family,” particularly on holidays and holy days. This applies to single people from many backgrounds: the widowed, priests, and, of course, those with SSA [same-sex attraction].

In other words, I deliberately cut myself off from intimacy and chose a community that says I’m afflicted with a tendency ordered toward an intrinsic moral evil. So obviously I’ll need to explain that I might get lonely. I need you to help me battle that, and believe it or not, it might even benefit you!

Although there are many exceptions, men from SSA backgrounds are probably less likely to have ever changed the oil in a car or excelled at traditionally masculine sports such as football. They may prefer to listen to classical music or jazz rather than rock or rap and enjoy a nice glass of wine rather than a bottle of beer. It’s not unlikely that we clean our homes better than you do, and we might even be gourmet cooks…

No offense intended, but some of you could actually learn a few things from us in these areas!

I may indeed be able to show you better ways of organizing tchotchkes and slicing fresh mango. But beware! An openly gay man might also teach you the benefits of nonconformity, independent thinking, and being true to yourself, so be ready to change the subject if that comes up.

Meanwhile, you have something to offer me!

But we can also learn from you. For example, I was pathetic at pretty much all sports as a child. I do not mean this as an indictment of him, but if my father had ever pulled me into the backyard to throw a baseball with me, or if he had ever taken me fishing, I would have been so thrilled that I probably would have announced it in “show and tell.” I also might have learned enough grace and skill to avoid being made the brunt of many cruel “sissy” jokes and being continually picked last on every team.

Yes, if I can pull myself away from the gym and you can get your ass off the couch, you can teach me to throw a ball. And if the author’s right, after I convince you to hang out with gay men, you can teach me how to deal with guys who have to be convinced to hang out with gay men. Win-win!

I could learn other things from you, as well. Like how it feels to have a loving, committed relationship with another human being. Because my religion made me give that up. But, hey, a baseball lesson would be nice, too.

If you want to be my friend, though, I’ll need some things from you.

First, let us be emotional and share our thoughts and feelings with you. No, I do not need to pour my heart out constantly—but I sometimes do. You, I hope, have a wife with whom you can do so. I do not. I am your perpetually single next-door neighbor—the one who is not ever going to be otherwise.

See, we’re not so different. You have someone who wants to hear your thoughts and feelings, and I can have somebody to plead with (that’s you!) to listen to mine, as long as I don’t do it too much. You don’t even actually have to listen. All I ask is that you grunt every so often as you change your oil while drinking a beer and playing the rap music.

Now of course I’ll fall in love with you, but it’s no biggie.

What would you do if a woman seemed to expect more from you than you could give her? You would, I hope, be very gentle with her, state your position, and be clear that you do not reject her as a person even though you reject her advances.

I would contend that, with another male who is committed to chastity, it is even easier, not harder, to deal with such a situation. First of all, we already know that the “crush” is a transient thing and cannot go anywhere. We are acutely aware of this, trust me.

See, a woman might stalk you, but I’m too pathetic and hopeless for that. I mean, if I weren’t aware I’m such a loser, it might be a problem. But I’m acutely aware of this, trust me. And I’ll be ever, ever, ever so grateful that you put up with me even though I’m, well, me.

So like us—love us—and do not ignore us even if you have had to give us the painful truth that we need to ease off a little. But remain available. It will mean the world to us if you do.

Now, as for next steps…

So how do you begin? Start by knocking off the “gay” or “faggot” jokes. Most of them are not funny anyway, and you may be telling them in front of someone who has a secret you never dreamed of and hurting that person immensely. You may be even preventing that person from ever telling you about his or her struggles.

Sure, some of those “gay” or “faggot” jokes are hilarious, but most of them are not. So please stop. Because there’s nothing a celibate gay wants more than a straight man who’s just sworn off fag jokes. And I bet there’s nothing a straight man who’s just sworn off fag jokes wants more than a celibate gay telling him about his struggles.

One last bit of cautionary advice:

We do not need you to “fix” us. We are working on that already, or we should be. But you are, by virtue of your manhood, part of the solution.

Indeed — your manhood truly is the solution to my celibacy. And really, that’s all I want.

Comments

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Hyhybt
May 1st, 2014 | LINK

Love your last line.

Baker
May 1st, 2014 | LINK

Why would a celibate, old, gay Catholic man like Mr. Evans want “to appeal particularly to heterosexual men”? If he doesn’t like living alone, why doesn’t he get a celibate, old, gay, Catholic roommate like himself?

Ben in Oakland
May 1st, 2014 | LINK

He also said this.

“I have occasionally told a friend or even posted on my Facebook page that I thought a certain man was very attractive. This has scandalized a few, and they have told me so. My answer to them is always the same: ‘When I chose celibacy, I did not become blind.; So try getting over the fact that I find attractive men attractive. I do. Appreciating the human form is not the sin here, whichever gender. The sin is in allowing it to lead you to lustful behavior.

Jesus would fain disagree, old sport. He did say that a man looking with lust upon a woman was the same as committing adultery with her in his heart.

I doubt he would make an exception for the poor self loathing old queer who was just looking at a man and “appreciating” him in a non-lustful way, of course.

It just amazes me what self hatred will do to a person.

Lindoro Almaviva
May 1st, 2014 | LINK

Can we lobby the Webster dictionary to change the definition of “Pathetic” and just put a link to this essay?

L. C. Burgundy
May 1st, 2014 | LINK

Tsk tsk, if Mr. Mainwaring just follow his religion’s teaching and stay in the closet where his religion tells him he belongs, he could have fit in with such ease instead of moping around like the forlorn puppy hoping he finds the little boy that won’t sadistically torture him:

“For some persons, revealing their homosexual tendencies to certain close friends, family members, a spiritual director, confessor, or members of a Church support group may provide some spiritual and emotional help…however, general public self-disclosures are not helpful and should not be encouraged.” -U.S. Roman Catholic Bishops

L. C. Burgundy
May 1st, 2014 | LINK

And of course my post should reference Mr. Evans, not Mr. Mainwaring, although the advice would apply to anyone who claims to be an observant Catholic and “SSA” (or homosexually-oriented or whatever the current Catholic buzzword is) on a public forum. Their bishops want them in the closet where they belong.

Ryan
May 1st, 2014 | LINK

This was a really rough read. I feel so sorry for this guy.

Ready-to-Halt
May 1st, 2014 | LINK

The writers on this site are quick to rally to the defense of a straight man who expressed his beliefs by contributing toward the cause of marriage inequality. They seem equally eager to heap ridicule upon a gay man who, out of dedication to his religious convictions, has foregone the prospect of marriage. Interesting.

I don’t share Mr. Evans’s beliefs. I feel pity and distress for him, caught between the rock of his faith and the hard place of his sexuality. I admire his self-sacrifice, though I think it tragically misguided. I shudder at the political agendas his story is enabling. But I don’t believe being mean-spirited toward him or others who believe and have chosen similarly will do a damn thing toward helping them to resolve that internal conflict.

Neil
May 1st, 2014 | LINK

Is Mr Evans, perhaps, angling for a free auto service and tune up?

Pat
May 1st, 2014 | LINK

Ready, what do you feel for those sincere devout straights who support Mr. Evans and believe that all with “SSA” should follow his example and their beliefs? Are they not bigots?

Baker
May 1st, 2014 | LINK

L.C. Burgundy, to be fair, the source of your quote (guidelines from the USCCB) included the qualifier “In the context of parish life,” before the word “however”. And also to be fair, guidelines from the USCCB are not authoritative.

Gene in L.A.
May 1st, 2014 | LINK

Laugh and cluck your tongues and shake your heads all you want to at this guy. I feel desperately sad for him and angry for all of us.

L. C. Burgundy
May 2nd, 2014 | LINK

I think what I stated stands. I can’t imagine that it was the intention of that document to mean that it was a-ok for Catholic people to come out online.

And whether that “guideline” is “authoritative” or not, the official position of the Roman Catholic bishops in the U.S. is that he is an intrinsically disordered being that belongs in the closet. Period.

I tried to live with this sort of viewpoint and this approach to religion for years. It’s great if you like being alone. This is a particularly sad coping mechanism we’re seeing here.

Pat
May 2nd, 2014 | LINK

I neither laugh or cluck my tongue. But I don’t believe that his celibacy might not be the right choice for him, and I reject the “there’s a lid for every pot” happy-flappy BS

KZ
May 2nd, 2014 | LINK

Loneliness, longing for male, heterosexual friends, and no ‘faggot’ jokes? Now I truly know that I will NEVER become celibate and ex-gay!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Paul Douglas
May 2nd, 2014 | LINK

Richard Evans is truly a pathetic individual. He has voluntarily walked back into the delusion of the romanist cult and this is what he gets for it. Nothing real except the hope of some nebulous future reward and the assuaging of some current church-inspired guilt. This is what you signed up for, Richard so man-up. Wanna be around men? There are wonderful gay men out there to get to know, relate to, and spend your life with & you can still be celibate or whatever. But invest your time in community that is worthwhile or stifle it, buddy.

Baker
May 2nd, 2014 | LINK

L.C. Burgundy, whether we’re talking about the “intention” or the words of the USCCB’s guidelines, it remains that the USCCB’s guidelines are non-binding, non-definitive and not authoritative Catholic teaching on their own. It would seem to reason that’s why they’re called guidelines. The USCCB’s intention would thus be to offer a guideline, to be interpreted prudentially, not a definitive binding rule covering every case and circumstance — or Mr. Evans in particular.

You claim that “the official position of the Roman Catholic bishops in the U.S. is that he is an intrinsically disordered being that belongs in the closet. Period.”

Not so. While it’s true that the USCCB teaches that the particular inclination to engage in homosexual acts is objectively/intrinsically disordered, the same USCCB document from which your quote came goes on to explain: “It is crucially important to understand that saying a person has a particular inclination that is disordered is not to say that the person as a whole is disordered. [...] Sometimes the Church is misinterpreted or misrepresented as teaching that persons with homosexual inclinations are objectively disordered, as if everything about them were disordered or rendered morally defective by this inclination. Rather, the disorder is in that particular inclination, which is not ordered toward the fulfillment of the natural ends of human sexuality. Because of this, acting in accord with such an inclination simply cannot contribute to the true good of the human person. Nevertheless, while the particular inclination to homosexual acts is disordered, the person retains his or her intrinsic human dignity and value.”

Importantly, the USCCB document also points out that this issue is not unique to homosexual persons: “Of course, heterosexual persons not uncommonly have disordered sexual inclinations as well. It is not enough for a sexual inclination to be heterosexual for it to be properly ordered. For example, any tendency toward sexual pleasure that is not subordinated to the greater goods of love and marriage is disordered, in that it inclines a person towards a use of sexuality that does not accord with the divine plan for creation.” And, “Furthermore, it is not only sexual inclinations that can be disordered within a human person. Other inclinations can likewise be disordered, such as those that lead to envy, malice, or greed. We are all damaged by the effects of sin, which causes desires to become disordered.”

You say, “It’s great if you like being alone,” but it’s not Catholic teaching that gay people must or even should be alone. To the contrary, the same USCCB document specifically says, “Living in isolation can ultimately exacerbate one’s disordered tendencies and undermine the practice of chastity,” and therefore gay people “should seek to form stable friendships among both homosexuals and heterosexuals. . . . A homosexual person can have an abiding relationship with another homosexual without genital sexual expression.” They could even live together in that chaste manner, in a loving, committed relationship.

Eric Payne
May 2nd, 2014 | LINK

Read to Haiti writes:

The writers on this site are quick to rally to the defense of a straight man who expressed his beliefs by contributing toward the cause of marriage inequality. They seem equally eager to heap ridicule upon a gay man who, out of dedication to his religious convictions, has foregone the prospect of marriage. Interesting.

But, Haiti, “out of dedication to his religious convictions” is not what is prompting his celibacy. What is prompting it is his desire to conform to what makes those around him more comfortable — his church’ hierarchy who “love the sinner, but hate the sin,” so, therefore, if he doesn’t “sin,” he’s the recipient of their love and good graces. It is his church and the members of that church in whose “good graces” he is attempting to stand, and not his God’s.

Eric Payne
May 2nd, 2014 | LINK

Hait, to continue:

If Evans acknowledges he was born gay, he’s also recognizing God made him gay.

The actions he’s taking would then indicate his God created him to endure a life of physical and mental torture, that God created him simply to test Evans’ mettle: “I made you homosexual. Live with it. But if you ever ACT on it, and fail to ask My forgiveness, you will suffer an eternity of hellfire and damnation.”

So, does Evans worship a loving, nurturing God… or one who treats mankind as an ant farm under His Divine Magnifying Glass? Is Evans’ Holy Father one who wants to see His children prosper and be happy, or one who’s chained His children to a wall in the basement, keeping them captive so that He can brutalize them?

I know which one it appears Evans worships… but I cannot understand why any thinking individual would make that choice.

Pat
May 2nd, 2014 | LINK

Never underestimate the allure of masochism Eric!

Victor
May 2nd, 2014 | LINK

I pray all these poor unfortunates truly find God one day. Because He sure as hell does not reside in the Catholic Church. People are chosen by God to be gay because that orientation and outsider view is an essential tonic for a world dying from conformity to illogical dogma. We are here to help solve these problems – not to waste His time to contort ourselves with self-flagellation meant to keep us from being who and what we were born to be. Any read of these torturous distortions of human life reveals very sad people who are wasting their lives to enable the very people they were sent here to save. God is a pretty smart guy. Stop second-guessing His decisions and live the life you were given. Spending an entire lifetime’s opportunities denying your nature is not only not constructive – it makes no sense.

Jay
May 2nd, 2014 | LINK

Yet another blog attacking gay people. Really sad. BTB has a penchant for blaming the victim, especially if the victim is gay.

Ben in Oakland
May 2nd, 2014 | LINK

Jay, he’s not a gay person. He is a person with same sex attractions. As the religious reich tells us repeatedly, being gay is not who you are, it”s what you do. Evans clearly accepts that definition of himself.

He’s also a homo-hating-homo, with the prime object of his disaffections being himself. This whole article, written for Witherspoon, no less, is one long pity party of homo-hating-homo propaganda.

I have a lot I’d like to say on this, but I am on vacation with my best friend and my family. If I can, I will write a little later.

MattNYC
May 2nd, 2014 | LINK

@Lindoro

Not only the definition of “pathetic” but I think DSM and other medical reference books should put this essay under any discussion of SOCE. And maybe entered into evidence at future trials involving SOCE.

Talk about not well-adjusted. I do feel for him to some extent.

“Widows/Widowers” do not choose their status–and can re-marry or at least be intimate with others. Priests and Nuns DO choose their situation and should know what to expect–that’s what Seminary is for. He’s forced himself into a prison of his own making (or by following the “orders” of a bunch of ignorant men).

Priya Lynn
May 2nd, 2014 | LINK

Pat said “I neither laugh or cluck my tongue. But I don’t believe that his celibacy might not be the right choice for him, and I reject the “there’s a lid for every pot” happy-flappy BS”

You’ve got to have a very twisted sense of right and wrong if you can read that and think this might be the right choice for him.

Jay said “Yet another blog attacking gay people. Really sad. BTB has a penchant for blaming the victim, especially if the victim is gay.”

What’s sorely missing from this piece is placing the blame where it belongs, on the religion and religious people that convinced this man to live a life of misery for no reason.

L. C. Burgundy
May 2nd, 2014 | LINK

Baker: “They could even live together in that chaste manner, in a loving, committed relationship.”

Oh brother. Talk about twisting the Roman Catholic rules. That little proposal is not even remotely suggested in any Catholic document and is not going to fly in anything but the truly heterodox Catholic parishes. Is this the sort of nonsense Courage is teaching now? I preferred it when they just planted pop psychology notions in parents’ heads about what made their kid gay.

I was Roman Catholic for 30 years and you’re not fooling me. Officially, gay people or SSA or the homosexually orientated or whatever aren’t to marry, aren’t to partner, and are barred from religious life. You’re a pew warmer and if you’re a good boy and far enough in the closet, maybe you can be a lector or an usher. You are expected to live alone and celibate for the balance of your life. In reality, that’s what happens anyway because other people aren’t generally looking for roommates by age 30 or 40. Exhibit 1: Mr. Evans.

Jay
May 2nd, 2014 | LINK

Priya Lynn said: “What’s sorely missing from this piece is placing the blame where it belongs, on the religion and religious people that convinced this man to live a life of misery for no reason.”

Precisely. Unfortunately, the pattern that has emerged from BTB bloggers is that it is much easier to blame gay people that to suggest that religion might be to blame for the bigotry that twists so many people, including gay people who drink that koolaid.

etseq
May 2nd, 2014 | LINK

It is standard official catholic apologists now to make certain claims that, like most apologetics, seem convincing until you read the only document that matters – the 1986 Pastoral Letter to the Bishops on the Pastoral Care of Homosexual Persons (devised, written and enforced by Ratzinger personally). Apologists claim that the RC teaching only relates to “acts” rather than identity, and that the Church opposes all forms of discrimination against “Homomsexual Persons”. What they don’t tell you is that this what the state of RC teaching PRIOR to Ratzinger’s intervention in 1986 in order to “toughen” the prior policy document of 1975 to discourage what he deemed as a culture of leniency that had developed in the US.
The “Pastoral Letter” was anything but pastoral, it radically re-pathologized homosexuality and reversed the Church’s prior support for limited gay rights legislation. But the most disgusting part of the document was its cynical attempt to blame gay rights activism for the violence gays suffer. The intention was clear – stay in the closet or suffer the consequences.
In prior documents, the RC church had labelled homomsexual acts as “instrinsically disordered” because they did not lead to procreation but it remained explicitly neutral on the status of a “Homosexual Person” (aka gay identity). This wasn’t sufficient for Ratzinger so he extended the analysis by claiming not only were acts disordered but the “Homosexual condition” must be an “objective disorder” since the desire or inclination is itself “a strong tendency towards an intrinsic moral evil.”
Further, when they “engage in homosexual activity they confirm within themselves a disordered sexual inclination which is essentially self-indulgent.”
But the coup de gras is the following:

“But the proper reaction to crimes committed against homosexual persons should not be to claim that the homosexual condition is not disordered. When such a claim is made and when homosexual activity is consequently condoned, or when civil legislation is introduced to protect behavior to which no one has any conceivable right, neither the Church nor society at large should be surprised when other distorted notions and practices gain ground, and irrational and violent reactions increase.”
So, gay sex is not only intrinsically disorder, gay people by their vary nature are “objectively disordered” which is “essentially self-indulgent” Considering how evil, disordered, and self-indulgent gay people are, if they have the gall to attempt to rebut these accusations, then they should not be surprised when they suffer violence from society that naturally reacts to such depravity.
Finally, forget about any legal protections that define gay people as a class because no law can “protect behavior to which no one has any conceivable right”

http://bilgrimage.blogspot.com/2009/12/defining-gay-persons-as-disordered.html

Timothy Kincaid
May 2nd, 2014 | LINK

So, does Evans worship a loving, nurturing God… or one who treats mankind as an ant farm under His Divine Magnifying Glass? Is Evans’ Holy Father one who wants to see His children prosper and be happy, or one who’s chained His children to a wall in the basement, keeping them captive so that He can brutalize them?

I know which one it appears Evans worships… but I cannot understand why any thinking individual would make that choice.

I tend to believe that we get the god we need. And I guess there are people out there who desperately need a judgmental angry old man in the sky who is looking for any reason to reject and punish.

It doesn’t sound terribly healthy or happy to me, but I suppose that it works for some. My only objection is when they decide that I have to have their judgmental angry old man in the sky as well.

Rob Tisinai
May 2nd, 2014 | LINK

From the comments:

“What’s sorely missing from this piece is placing the blame where it belongs, on the religion and religious people that convinced this man to live a life of misery for no reason.”

From the piece:

“In other words, I deliberately cut myself off from intimacy and chose a community that says I’m afflicted with a tendency ordered toward an intrinsic moral evil. So obviously I’ll need to explain that I might get lonely.”

And:

“I could learn other things from you, as well. Like how it feels to have a loving, committed relationship with another human being. Because my religion made me give that up.”

Timothy Kincaid
May 2nd, 2014 | LINK

As some have noted, Box Turtle Bulletin is not overtly hostile to religion or the religious.

We do not assign religion the blame for all things bad or as the sole source of anti-gay animus. We note that anti-gay animus preceded any of the current religions and is observable to some extent in some fairly non-religious societies.

We even note that some religious communities are actively working for greater equality and justice (though, for some reason, those threads do not seem to attract as many comments).

But fear not. There are many many many many many gay-themed websites that are extremely hostile to religion and religious people. Some never mention any progress within communities of faith while faithfully reporting any failure of any religious person, irrespectively of whether it has any connection to the gay community. If any readers are missing a little anti-religiousness, a quick visit to one of these sites can give you a quick fix.

But don’t stay away too long, you’ll be missed.

Pat
May 2nd, 2014 | LINK

Sorry Priya Lynn, perhaps I should have written more. The difference between us though, is I try not to tell others, or tell stories about what others, think or feel. So when I look at a 59 year old man “with SSA” who so clearly has placed his faith as the most important thing in his life, I do not rule out that he could do worse than to be celibate. He could for one obvious example, claim to be all that and have unsafe truckstop sex on the side. And my point about not every pot having a lid is to provoke the honest conversation about how likely, even if he could reframe his faith as allowing him to act on his attractions, such a person could find a compatible partner and develop a robust healthy emotional and sexual relationship with them.

I agree that Baker’s assertion that orthodox Catholicism would endorse “living together in a loving chaste relationship” is nonsense — I know too many conservative orthodox Catholics and to a one they would say just approving living and loving (but no sexing!) together would be scandalizing. Let’s blame such religious people, and not “religion”, too please. The religious impulse is too consistently prevalent in humans throughout history to repress or deny. How it manifests is what can be steered for better or worse. And again, my only point about this poor soul is that at his age and with his strongly held beliefs, he could be much worse off.

Todd
May 2nd, 2014 | LINK

Religion ruins everything. Or at least it’s ruining Richard G. Evans. Why worship a God who is at best indifferent to your pain and at worst causing and continuing to cause it?

Priya Lynn
May 2nd, 2014 | LINK

Timothy said “As some have noted, Box Turtle Bulletin is not overtly hostile to religion or the religious.”.

That’s an inaccurate characterization of Box Turtle Bulletin’s attitude towards religion or the religous. Box Turtle Bulletin favours religious speech over anti-religious speech. Any religous speech is allowed such as asserting that eternally torturing people for being in a same sex relationship is moral, (and is considered a respectable belief). Its acceptable for people to promote that attitude all the way to tone deaf comments like “We are all god’s children” which is ignorant, arrogant, and offensive to many atheists.

Religious people can suggest positive reasons why religious countries are more socially dysfunctional than non-religious countries but if I as an atheist express my opinion how it might be a negative aspect of religion that causes this my comment is deleted and I get an angry email about how my comment was “just a slur and an incredibly stupid one at that”
.
Timothy said “We do not assign religion the blame for all things bad or as the sole source of anti-gay animus.”.

I have never asserted that relgion is the blame for all things bad or that it is the sole source of anti-gay animus. Your insinuation that I do is unfair and similar to your several past unfair assertions that I “make every post about religion”.

Timothy said “We note that anti-gay animus preceded any of the current religions and is observable to some extent in some fairly non-religious societies.”.

There is no evidence that anti-gay animus preceded by all current religions. You’re in no place to make such an unsupported assertion. The only countries that are non-religious which have anti-gay animus are dictatorships where the dictator acts as a god and demands people worship him in the place of religion. Places like North Korea are pseudo-religious countries and although the official policy is anti-gay there is no polling to show what the masses think.

The truth is anti-gay animus occurs primarily amongst religious people with anti-gay atheists being quite rare in western countries.

Timothy said “We even note that some religious communities are actively working for greater equality and justice (though, for some reason, those threads do not seem to attract as many comments).”.

I’ve always acknowledged that many, perhaps most American chrisitans are pro-gay. Your constant false insinuations about my positions are unjust and unwelcome.

Priya Lynn
May 2nd, 2014 | LINK

Rob said “From the piece:

“In other words, I deliberately cut myself off from intimacy and chose a community that says I’m afflicted with a tendency ordered toward an intrinsic moral evil. So obviously I’ll need to explain that I might get lonely.”

And:

“I could learn other things from you, as well. Like how it feels to have a loving, committed relationship with another human being. Because my religion made me give that up.”

Yes, you’re correct, I missed that amongst flood of repetitive mocking and blaming of the victim – my apologies.

Your article still gave the impression that the victim is mostly to blame for the position he’s in rather than religion and religious people. It was unbalanced in that way.

Priya Lynn
May 2nd, 2014 | LINK

Pat said “Sorry Priya Lynn, perhaps I should have written more. The difference between us though, is I try not to tell others, or tell stories about what others, think or feel. So when I look at a 59 year old man “with SSA” who so clearly has placed his faith as the most important thing in his life, I do not rule out that he could do worse than to be celibate. He could for one obvious example, claim to be all that and have unsafe truckstop sex on the side.”

I don’t deny that he could do worse, my point is that he would be better off without this belief that a god commands him to be celibate and will eternally torture him if he isn’t.

Pat said “And my point about not every pot having a lid is to provoke the honest conversation about how likely, even if he could reframe his faith as allowing him to act on his attractions, such a person could find a compatible partner and develop a robust healthy emotional and sexual relationship with them.”.

I do belive there is a pot for every lid but that for many people it is impossible to find that pot as their compatible lid may live a continent away and the odds of the two ever encountering each other virtually non-existant.

Pat said “Let’s blame such religious people, and not “religion”, too please.”.

I can’t see how you can seperate religion from religious people. What we do and believe springs from who we are, you can’t have people with destructive religious beliefs without religion.

Pat said “The religious impulse is too consistently prevalent in humans throughout history to repress or deny.”.

That’s clearly not true. Millions of people have put aside the religion they were indoctrinated into to become atheists. I do agree that for people deeply indoctrinated as children this will be very difficult as you can’t be reasoned out of a position that you were never reasoned into.

Priya Lynn
May 2nd, 2014 | LINK

Now I know Timothy won’t allow me to speak my mind unfettered on this so I’ll leave him with the last word but please dear readers be highly skeptical of any position he asserts I hold or any action he claims I’ve taken.

Pat
May 2nd, 2014 | LINK

Sorry if your comments are being censored P L. To your points to my comment, you seem split about religion. In one comment you assert majority of Christians are pro-gay (which I don’t see evidence for globally). That would seem to differentiate, if not separate some religious people from “religion”. I find attacking religion as religion ineffective compared to being more specific and holding people, and not an institution or even the whole fact of religion accountable.

Timothy Kincaid
May 2nd, 2014 | LINK

Pat,

It is simply untrue that Priya Lynn’s comments are censored. What she cannot do is what she has done in the past: make false assertions about what others say or believe. We have had to put her on moderation a few times in the past.

William Fisher
May 2nd, 2014 | LINK

Well, I’ve read through Mr Evans’s piece, and as a Roman Catholic myself, although I’m now more of a post-Catholic, I can relate to it. It brings tears to my eyes, and I mean that literally. He is allowing the Church’s abusive religious teaching on homosexuality to rule and wreck his life. In my view, he should stop it – and stop it NOW.

Baker
May 2nd, 2014 | LINK

L. C. Burgundy, it’s true that I’m not fooling you. It is you who is doing that. You claim that “officially, gay people or SSA or the homosexually orientated or whatever aren’t to marry, aren’t to partner, and are barred from religious life,” but your opinion is not official Catholic teaching. “Religious life” includes also many lay men and women, including many with SSA. It also includes men with SSA who’ve been ordained to the priesthood, even if some men, those with “deep-seated homosexual tendencies”, are “barred” from the ordained priesthood. As to marriage, many “persons with SSA” are not impotent with the opposite sex and many validly marry the opposite sex. And anyone, including gay people, can “partner” with others in the non-sexual sense of the word. A “loving, committed relationship” does not require a sex act or sexual attraction. You can even have one with your family.

You say “You are expected to live alone and celibate for the balance of your life.” If by “celibate”, you mean not have sex outside of a man-woman marriage, that part is Catholic teaching and applies to everyone, whether you’re gay, straight or whatever. But your “live alone” part is not Catholic teaching.

You say “people aren’t generally looking for roommates by age 30 or 40″, but that’s irrelevant to the question of what is permitted. Catholics, including “persons with SSA”, are permitted to have roommates at any age.

Baker
May 2nd, 2014 | LINK

Pat, I agree with you that “too many conservative orthodox Catholics would say just approving living and loving (but no sexing!) together would be scandalizing.” Fortunately, gay people can “live and love” without their approval and without upstaging Catholic teaching that “Jesus gave scandal above all”.

L. C. Burgundy
May 2nd, 2014 | LINK

Well, Mr. Baker, you seem very adroit at weaving a magnificent rug of deflection and fog around the pointy bits and nubs of Catholic teaching. Maybe your suggestions would be best suited in an e-mail to Mr. Evans. I’m not the one complaining about loneliness here. I’m all for celibacy – if that’s you’re called to in life. It’s a gift, not an obligation to be imposed.

And then there you wrote a bunch of words about marrying a woman. Pardon me, but I think I am what you would so delicately term as “impotent with the opposite sex.” I also think Mr. Evans tried that and it kind of didn’t work for him. Maybe he just needs a pep talk. (There also used to be this organization called Exodus International and they claimed to be able to fix miserable gays up for straight marriages…perhaps you heard of them?)

Oh, and I don’t know about you, but I can stand my family maybe 3 days at a time, tops. I love ‘em but, with the exception of my father, they drive me nuts.

Pat
May 2nd, 2014 | LINK

Priya Lynn wrote:

“I do belive there is a pot for every lid but that for many people it is impossible to find that pot as their compatible lid may live a continent away and the odds of the two ever encountering each other virtually non-existant.”

I’m sorry, but if the lid to your pot is a continent away and the odds you will meet are non-existent, then that is not your lid! The idea that everyone has a lid and must find it has led to misery for those who are still single, and I dare say Mr. Evans is best single.

The marriage equality cause having a perhaps unintended consequence of making gay singles feel incomplete is bad enough, but to say the victim is being blamed here when he clearly and unequivocally owns his decision to be celibate is such victim complex BS. What happened to live and let live and owning your choices?

Baker
May 3rd, 2014 | LINK

L.C. Burgundy, you say “I’m all for celibacy – if that’s you’re called to in life.” Well, per Catholic teaching, “everyone is called to chastity and everyone is given sufficient grace to live a life consistent with the Commandments regardless of their situation circumstances or inclinations.”

As to “marrying a woman” and impotence, chastity does not require that you marry a woman. Instead, per Catholic teaching, you can be “celibate” (which is not the same as “live alone”). Again, per Catholic teaching, you’ve been “given sufficient grace to live a life consistent with the Commandments regardless” of your impotence, sexual orientation and whatever other circumstances you may have.

You might say the Commandments are an “imposed” obligation, not a “suggestion”, but the Catholic Church teaches that you have free will along with sufficient grace to live a life consistent with them. And if you choose not to, it’s your choice.

etseq
May 3rd, 2014 | LINK

Baker is most likely a member of Courage – the Catholic celibacy/ex-gay group. I’m not quite sure why he thinks we will be impressed with all the “options” the church gives those who “suffer from SSA” but I would remind readers to see my comment above about the notorious 1986 Pastoral Letter, which radically changed RC dogma for the worse. In fact, prior to that Letter, there was a thriving affirming ministry called “Dignity” that had quasi-official status in most dioceses. However, after Ratzinger’s Letter, the Bishops declared it heretical and banned it from any Church property. Most members ended up converting to the Episcopal Church when it became apparent the Church was not going to accept anything less than celibacy. Courage has been promoted by the Bishops but for obvious reasons, its not very popular but has its own vicious sub-culture that is incredible hostile to gay rights.

L. C. Burgundy
May 3rd, 2014 | LINK

Ahh, more irrelevant words about marrying a woman and the misleading use of chastity vs. celibacy. More of the old Courage doublespeak. You mean celibacy is required, so just say it. Own it. Be proud of it. I realize the Courage ministry is absolutely tiny and mostly a front for bishops to look “pastoral” while simultaneously pushing their political agenda, but hey, I think Benedict once said he would not be disappointed to have a smaller, more loyal church.

Again, Mr. Evans is the person who is apparently looking for the pep talk, not me. He is apparently in error about the isolation the Catholic position engenders, so please correct him.

Baker
May 3rd, 2014 | LINK

etseq, I’m not “most likely a member of Courage”, and I don’t “think we will be impressed with all the ‘options’ the church gives those who ‘suffer from SSA’”. For example, some people may be impressed with the option of “eternal death”, while others may choose “eternal life”.

It is likewise with your “comment above about the notorious 1986 Pastoral Letter” where you had commented: “So, gay people by their vary nature are ‘objectively disordered’ which is ‘essentially self-indulgent’ Considering how evil, disordered, and self-indulgent gay people are”. Why would YOU say such things about gay people? The “Pastoral Letter” did not say those things. The letter said homosexual *acts* are evil and that the *inclination* to engage in homosexual acts is an objective disorder and essentially self-indulgent, not the homosexual person.

In regard to the homosexual person, the letter says the “person in his spiritual and physical dimensions, [is] created by God and heir, by grace, to eternal life. [...] The intrinsic dignity of each person must always be respected in word, in action and in law. [...] What is essential is that the fundamental liberty which characterizes the human person and gives him his dignity be recognized as belonging to the homosexual person as well.”

Steve
May 4th, 2014 | LINK

I have more respect for outright homophobes who truly say what they think about gay people, than douchebags like Baker who couch their disdain in fake concern and understanding.

And there is no such thing as “SSA”. That’s just a term the religious have made up to avoid saying that anyone is really gay. It’s all just behavior to them. Or superficial feelings that can be easily suppressed.

The idea that it’s ok to live with someone and maybe cuddle with them now and then, so as long as you don’t have sex is just absurd. It perfectly shows how emotionally stunted and sex obsessed religious extremists are. The only thing they care about is what people do with their genitals.

etseq
May 5th, 2014 | LINK

Baker – sounds like you and Richard G. Evans have alot in common. Maybe you could both find a masculine straight man to “model” your proper gender roles together…

Priya Lynn
May 5th, 2014 | LINK

Baker said ” The letter said homosexual *acts* are evil and that the *inclination* to engage in homosexual acts is an objective disorder and essentially self-indulgent, not the homosexual person.”.

That’s B.S. Our “inclinations” and behavior are not divorced from who we are as people, our “inclinations” and behavior spring from who we are as people. You can’t seperate them from the person, if the “inclination” and acts are evil and an objective disorder than the person is evil and objectively disordered.

Baker
May 5th, 2014 | LINK

Priya, it’s fine to say “our ‘inclinations’ and behavior spring from who we are as people”, but in Catholic teaching, a person’s identity can be layered like a cake or generations of children, with a fundamental Identity that is not disordered and free will (one’s own or another’s, perhaps of long ago), by which disordered identity, inclinations and behavior can subsequently manifest. Thus, rather than “divorce” the disordered identities, behaviors and inclinations, one can instead request an annulment, whereby the alleged marriage is found to have never existed.

Priya Lynn
May 5th, 2014 | LINK

Baker, you cannot divorce any person’s behavior or “inclinations” from who they are. Pretend there are layers if you want but there is no such thing as one layer not affecting the other, we are integrated beings, not a colony of identities or seperate things like generations of children. You can’t seperate free will from a person and still have a person. Behaviors and “inclinations” can no more be seperated from who a person is than the mechanisms that allow photosynthesis can be seperated from the nature of a plant.

What you’re left with is if the “inclination” and behavior is evil then the person is necessarily evil.
Catholic teaching is fundamentally flawed because it is based on believing things for which there is no evidence – that is not a virtue.

Baker
May 6th, 2014 | LINK

Priya, “divorce” is your straw man. Again, if we use the Catholic analogy, then rather than “divorce” a disordered inclination from an alleged “who you are”, a person can instead request an annulment, whereby one may discover that one’s true “who you are” has never been married to a disordered inclination, and what’s more, that one’s true “who you are” is one’s sinless creator who precedes even the birth of one’s alleged “who you are”.

“What you’re left with” is what you began with.

It’s not a “separation of free will from the person”. It’s an exercise of free will by the person. It’s a recognition of an integrated and true identity that “can no more be separated from who a person is than the mechanisms that allow photosynthesis can be separated from the nature of a plant.”

You can call it “B.S.” and say Catholic teaching is “based on believing things for which there is no evidence,” but Catholic teaching proposes the opposite, that “God provides men with constant evidence of himself in created realities.”

Perhaps it’s a matter of perspective. I appreciate many perspectives. Thank you for sharing yours.

Richard Rush
May 6th, 2014 | LINK

Baker said,

You can call it “B.S.” and say Catholic teaching is “based on believing things for which there is no evidence,” but Catholic teaching proposes the opposite, that “God provides men with constant evidence of himself in created realities.”

Great example of how Catholic “teaching” seeks to indoctrinate people into believing they see evidence when there is none whatsoever. It’s like being thirsty as you walk down a road in a desert, and your friend says, “Look, look at the evidence of water up ahead!” And then when you take a closer look, you realize the “evidence” was a mirage.

Ryan
May 6th, 2014 | LINK

Catholic acts (i.e., their prayers, beliefs, rituals, Communion, confession) are evil. And the inclination to engage in these evil acts is objectively disordered and monumentally self-indulgent and foolish. I hope Baker realizes that I am not saying anything remotely offense to him. I don’t have any problem with Catholics themselves. Just everything they say, think, believe, do, or feel.

Priya Lynn
May 6th, 2014 | LINK

Baker said “Priya, “divorce” is your straw man.”.

Its not a straw man. You say seperate the layers, you say you can “request an annulment” from your gayness, I say divorce, it amounts to the same thing.

Baker said “Again, if we use the Catholic analogy, then rather than “divorce” a disordered inclination from an alleged “who you are”, a person can instead request an annulment, whereby one may discover that one’s true “who you are” has never been married to a disordered inclination,”.

Who we are attracted to is a core part of our being. It is impossible to stop our attractions, one can “request an annulment” but it will never happen. What we feel IS our true self, any claim to the contrary is just B.S. If the “inclination” is disordered and gay sex evil then it necessarily follows the person is disordered and evil. You can never seperate the person from what they are desiring.

Baker said and what’s more, that one’s true “who you are” is one’s sinless creator who precedes even the birth of one’s alleged “who you are”.”.

Utter nonsense. There is no evidence for your god despite people millions of people searching intensively for thousands of years. It is not reasonable to assume such a god exists and certainly no loving and just god who eternally tortures people for harmless acts can exist.

Baker said “It’s not a “separation of free will from the person”. It’s an exercise of free will by the person.”.

One cannot choose not to feel same sex attractions. You can never sperate the attractions from the person, free will is not absolute. You cannot free will yourelf to levitate, walk through walls, or stop being gay.

Baker said “It’s a recognition of an integrated and true identity that “can no more be separated from who a person is than the mechanisms that allow photosynthesis can be separated from the nature of a plant.”

What you’re saying is precisely the opposite of that. You’re saying who we are can be divided like children of different generations or layers on a cake. We can’t. That’s what an intregrated identity means.

Baker said “You can call it “B.S.” and say Catholic teaching is “based on believing things for which there is no evidence,” but Catholic teaching proposes the opposite, that “God provides men with constant evidence of himself in created realities.”

You’re assuming that if Catholicism teaches something it must be true, we know that is not the case. Catholicism once taught the sun revolved around the earth. The onus is on you to prove your extraordinary claims are true and no catholic has done so. Talk of “created realities” is the “begging the question” logical fallacy where you assume your conclusion in your argument even though you haven’t proven it. There is nothing in any reality that requires the existence of a god to explain it and no evidence for a god so it is unreasonable to assume there is a god.

Ben in Oakland
May 6th, 2014 | LINK

Priya, you forgot the biggest assumption of all.

The assumption that whatever the being you label as god, whatever it is he tells you…

That he is telling you the truth.

As the OT tells us, his ways are not our ways. We already know that this fountain of morality is happy to slaughter people for their sins, even the little babies who couldn’t sin even if they wanted to. He is happy to condemn you to burn in hell forever, even if it was his fault that you never got the memo.

His ways are not our ways. Right,

Eric Payne
May 6th, 2014 | LINK

Ben in Oskland said:

As the OT tells us, his ways are not our ways. We already know that this fountain of morality is happy to slaughter people for their sins, even the little babies who couldn’t sin even if they wanted to. He is happy to condemn you to burn in hell forever, even if it was his fault that you never got the memo.

But, Ben, they’ve got that seeming paradox covered… because babies are born in sin, and born of sin…

Except in those parts where “The Good Book” contradicts itself.

Priya Lynn
May 6th, 2014 | LINK

Eric said “But, Ben, they’ve got that seeming paradox covered… because babies are born in sin, and born of sin…”.

That belief is based on the idea that all generations after Eve inherit her guilt – an absurd idea to say the least. So, no they don’t have it covered.

Timothy Kincaid
May 6th, 2014 | LINK

I, for one, am weary of the evangelists of various stripes selling their beliefs about religion.

Can we give it a rest for a while? Maybe just until the next time religion is tangentially mentioned, at which time y’all can pull out your cudgels and resume.

Eric Payne
May 6th, 2014 | LINK

Oriya,

They’ve got it covered to their satisfaction.

I’ve got to hand it to LDS, though — they’ve got faith down to actuarial science to such a point, in a great number of wards/stakes, they send their parishioners/adherents actual invoices for tithes.

Priya Lynn
May 6th, 2014 | LINK

Right Eric, it takes very little to satisfy them.

Priya Lynn
May 6th, 2014 | LINK

Religion is far from tangential to this post.

Eric Payne
May 6th, 2014 | LINK

Priya,

Cut him some slack. He’s just trying to stay happy.

Baker
May 6th, 2014 | LINK

Priya, you say, “You say separate the layers,” but I didn’t say “separate the layers”. Likewise, you say, “I say divorce, it amounts to the same thing [as annulment],” but just because you say something doesn’t make it true.

You say “who we are attracted to is a core part of our being,” and someone else can reply, “Yes, I’m attracted to Jesus and he’s not only a core part of my being but he is my being and my rock, and he’s not gay.” Or, someone can reply, “My experience is that who I’ve been attracted to has shifted, and whether the shift has been a little or lot, a shifting foundation does not make for a good foundation or core of my being. Therefore, I don’t conclude that who I’m attracted to is a core part of my being.” Or another may reply, “‘A core part’ implies there are more parts to the core, but core is unitary and indivisible. Who I’m attracted to might have some importance in my life, but I don’t find it to be the core of my life. I therefore reject your proposition on multiple grounds.” Similar objections apply to your claim that “what we feel IS our true self”.

You say “There is no evidence for your god despite people millions of people searching intensively for thousands of years,” while millions of other people have testified to the evidence across the same “thousands of years”. You can say they’re wrong, crazy, indoctrinated, mistaken or whatever, and other people can say the same about you.

You say “one cannot choose not to feel same sex attraction,” but what “one” are you talking about??? For example, if I’m not feeling any same-sex or opposite-sex attraction right now, and according to you, “what we feel is our true self,” then does that mean my “true self” is not gay or straight right now?

You can say “free will is not absolute”, and someone else can say “Everything is possible for one who has faith.” Again, we return to the question of WHO, as in WHO “cannot free will yourself to levitate, walk through walls, or stop being gay”. As in WHO are you, really? According to you, who we are depends on our feelings. If so, maybe if you had the right feelings, you could walk through walls.

You say, “You’re saying who we are can be divided like children of different generations or layers on a cake.” No, you’re only partly reflecting what I said. Per Catholic teaching, we can have false identification of “who we are” and call that “who we are”, but our true identity remains integrated within us, and like pushing the reset button with our free will, our sense of “who we are” can be righted and restored by the grace of God. You should not read that as saying that your false identity can change its sexual orientation. Instead, it may be realizing that your false identity is not your true identity, and that your true identity is not homosexually oriented.

And no, I’m not “assuming that if Catholicism teaches something it must be true”. If you reread what I said, I very clearly said “Catholic teaching PROPOSES”. If you need proof, that’s your onus. I’m not concerned with your onus.

Priya Lynn
May 6th, 2014 | LINK

Baker said “You say “who we are attracted to is a core part of our being,” and someone else can reply, “Yes, I’m attracted to Jesus and he’s not only a core part of my being but he is my being and my rock, and he’s not gay.”.

Jesus is imaginary and if you’re suggesting anyone has a romantic/sexual attraction to this imaginary friend I don’t believe you.

Baker said “Or, someone can reply, “My experience is that who I’ve been attracted to has shifted, and whether the shift has been a little or lot, a shifting foundation does not make for a good foundation or core of my being. Therefore, I don’t conclude that who I’m attracted to is a core part of my being.”

Anyone who says their attractions have shifted is a liar. There’s never been any proof anyone has changed orientation, no credible cases of it. There’s a reason why no one professing to have changed orientations has been willing to put their claim to the test with a no-lie MRI or penile plethsysmograph – it just doesn’t happen. As part of “exgay” therapy gays are taught that if they want to change orientation they have to believe there is no such thing as a gay person, that we are all heterosexual, and you have to believe you are heterosexual to stop having same sex attractions. That’s why lying about having changed orientations is so prevalent.

Baker said “Or another may reply, “‘A core part’ implies there are more parts to the core, but core is unitary and indivisible. Who I’m attracted to might have some importance in my life, but I don’t find it to be the core of my life. I therefore reject your proposition on multiple grounds.” Similar objections apply to your claim that “what we feel IS our true self”.”.

There may be a tiny minority of people for whom attraction to others matters little but for the vast majority of us, and virtually all gays you are attempting to preach to, who we are attracted to is a core part of who we are and no attempt to minimize its importance will succeed. You have no rational objections to the fact that what we feel reflects who we are.

I said “There is no evidence for your god despite people millions of people searching intensively for thousands of years,” while millions of other people have testified to the evidence across the same “thousands of years”.

Baker said “You can say they’re wrong, crazy, indoctrinated, mistaken or whatever, and other people can say the same about you.”.

Certainly they can, but I have scientific principles on my side, they are ignoring scientific principles and logic to reach those conclusions.

I said “one cannot choose not to feel same sex attraction,”

Baker said “|but what “one” are you talking about??? For example, if I’m not feeling any same-sex or opposite-sex attraction right now, and according to you, “what we feel is our true self,” then does that mean my “true self” is not gay or straight right now?”.

Your sophistry doesn’t impress anyone. As I’m sure you’re aware by “one”| I mean any person. Obviously I wasn’t saying anyone expreriences sexual/romantic attractions all the time. But aside from the tiny handful of assexuals everyone feels sexual/romantic attractions at some time, and you can never stop or change those.

Baker said “You can say “free will is not absolute”, and someone else can say “Everything is possible for one who has faith.””.

There’s never been any evidence that everything is possible with faith and no one has been able to substantiate claims of levitation, or walking through walls. Extraordinary claims require extraordinay evidence, the onus is on you to prove extraordinary claims, not me to disprove them – that is the overwhelming scientific concensus.

Baker said “Again, we return to the question of WHO, as in WHO “cannot free will yourself to levitate, walk through walls, or stop being gay”. As in WHO are you, really? According to you, who we are depends on our feelings. If so, maybe if you had the right feelings, you could walk through walls.”.

That was incredibly childish of you. Please attempt to stick to logic regardless of how unfamiliar it is to you.

I said “You’re saying who we are can be divided like children of different generations or layers on a cake.”

Baker said “No, you’re only partly reflecting what I said. Per Catholic teaching, we can have false identification of “who we are” and call that “who we are”, but our true identity remains integrated within us, and like pushing the reset button with our free will, our sense of “who we are” can be righted and restored by the grace of God.”.

Your in no position to tell any gay or lesbian (or anyone) who they are. The individual knows best and your attempt to push your beliefs on them is arrogant and immoral.

Baker said “You should not read that as saying that your false identity can change its sexual orientation. Instead, it may be realizing that your false identity is not your true identity, and that your true identity is not homosexually oriented.”.

The idea that anyone who believes they are same sex attracted is mistaken is utterly absurd. Gays and lesbians may lie to themselves (as anti-gay christian organizations like yours encourage them to do) and say they are heterosexual or “not homosexually oriented” but that will never stop them from having same sex attractions. That’s what you’re pushing: Lying to onself in order to gain the approval of an imaginary god ;and anti-gay religious bigots.

Baker said “And no, I’m not “assuming that if Catholicism teaches something it must be true”. If you reread what I said, I very clearly said “Catholic teaching PROPOSES”. If you need proof, that’s your onus. I’m not concerned with your onus.”.

Once again, the overwhelming concensus of the scientific community (that gave us all the astounding achievements we now have whereas religion has given us none) is that the onus is on the person making extraordinary claims to prove they are true, not on the skeptic to prove they are false. Science is on my side, not yours. All you have is blind faith which is in no sense a virtue.

Priya Lynn
May 6th, 2014 | LINK

Baker, if its true that “Everything is possible for one who has faith” then appear in my living room when you read this and I’ll convert to Catholicism at once.

If you’re just going to childishly say “I didn’t say that, I said “someone else can say that” then you are just an insincere troll, you’re wasting my time and you should stop immediately.

Ben in Oakland
May 6th, 2014 | LINK

The Catholic Church is way overly concerned about my onus. That’s the whole problem.

Baker
May 7th, 2014 | LINK

Priya, you say “There’s never been any proof anyone has changed orientation.” The standard of “proof” is the same as the standard of proof for sexual orientation, and that is not an agreed upon, objective, scientific, empirical test, because there isn’t one. Instead, we have dogmatic statements like “There is no such thing as sexual orientation”, and other vague, subjective descriptions like the APA’s statement that “sexual orientation defines the group of people in which one is likely to find satisfying and fulfilling romantic relationships”. Seriously, do you believe Mr. Evans is “likely to find satisfying and fulfilling romantic relationships” with men? Women? Neither men nor women?

Here’s another so-called definition: “Sexual orientation also refers to a person’s sense of identity based on emotional, romantic, and/or sexual attractions, related behaviors, and membership in a community of others who share those attractions.” Therefore, if a person’s “sense of identity” changes (and there’s no agreed upon, objective, scientific, empirical standard for what that means), then his sexual orientation could change from “straight” to “bisexual” to “gay” to “straight with SSA” or whatever.

You say “There’s never been any evidence that everything is possible with faith” and “I have scientific principles on my side,” but supernatural faith is not within the purview of science. Science can’t prove or disprove that supernatural faith is behind anything or not behind anything. The only “scientific consensus” on the subject is that there is no scientific consensus on the subject.

You say, “Your in no position to tell any gay or lesbian (or anyone) who they are. The individual knows best and your attempt to push your beliefs on them is arrogant and immoral.” You need to work on your reading comprehension. Your “arrogant and immoral” notions are your affair with yourself. I’m not telling anyone who they are. I referred to Catholic teaching because it came up in discussion in relation to the story.

You say “The idea that anyone who believes they are same sex attracted is mistaken is utterly absurd.” That’s not my idea. Must be yours. I wrote about a person who is NOT mistaken about his/her sexual orientation in regard to any identity.

You say “if its true that ‘Everything is possible for one who has faith’ then appear in my living room when you read this and I’ll convert to Catholicism at once.” That’s up to you. If it’s something you want, you are the one who has to have faith.

Now, “Can we give [the religion and science vs religion blather] a rest for a while?” I think our kind and patient host has suggested something along those lines. It’s been pleasant chatting with you, Priya.

Libria
May 7th, 2014 | LINK

Nice cherry picking, Baker.

From APA’s statement – first sentence: “Sexual orientation refers to an enduring pattern of emotional, romantic, and/or sexual attractions to men, women, or both sexes”

And: “Although there is insufficient evidence to support the use of psychological interventions to change sexual orientation, some individuals modified their sexual orientation identity (i.e., group membership and affiliation), behavior, and values.

Yes, APA does agree person can change behavior or orientation identity(self-labeling) but not attraction.
And we know sexual orientation refers to sexual attraction to men or women. It’s pretty simple.

There is objective, scientific test: MRI or penile plethysmograph .

Eric Payne
May 7th, 2014 | LINK

Libria says:

There is objective, scientific test: MRI or penile plethysmograph.

Or just find their private stash of porn.

Baker
May 7th, 2014 | LINK

Libria, you can pick all the cherries from all the trees, but it remains that there is no agreed upon, objective, scientific, empirical test or definition for sexual orientation. The APA itself offers several differing definitions.

Neither MRI nor penile plethysmograph is an agreed upon, validated, objective, empirical, scientific test for sexual orientation. They’re devices that provide limited measurements of physiology, but the devices themselves don’t measure or define, for example, “an enduring pattern of emotional, romantic, and/or sexual attractions to men, women, or both sexes”. A human can define or interpret that, but different humans can and do interpret it differently. And importantly, whatever interpretation is made of the device outputs, there is no agreed upon, validated, objective, empirical, scientific standard for sexual orientation by which to determine whether the interpretation is correct or incorrect.

You say “APA does agree person can change behavior or orientation identity(self-labeling) but not attraction,” but your statement lacks specificity. What attraction are you talking about? If you mean SEXUAL attraction, you should note that there is no requirement for any sexual attraction in your chosen APA definition of sexual orientation.

You say, “we know sexual orientation refers to sexual attraction to men or women,” but what you should know is that you’re refuting your previous APA quote that said “Sexual orientation refers to an enduring pattern of emotional, romantic, and/or sexual attractions to men, women, or both sexes.” And even that definition differs from other additional APA definitions of sexual orientation.

It’s pretty simple: There is no agreed upon, objective, scientific, empirical test or definition for sexual orientation. Anyone can make up his/her/their own definition as he/she/they pleases. It’s a concept, says the APA, of recent invention. I’ve been hearing a growing number of people of late who view the lesbian/gay/bisexual sexual orientation triad as already outdated, that it should respect all genders and even non-gendered distinctions, not just male and female but also non-binary gendered people, the transgendered, the androgynous look, the wrinkled look, and whatever floats anyone’s boat, they say.

Eric Payne
May 7th, 2014 | LINK

Baker says, in part:

I’ve been hearing a growing number of people of late who view the lesbian/gay/bisexual sexual orientation triad as already outdated, that it should respect all genders and even non-gendered distinctions, not just male and female but also non-binary gendered people, the transgendered, the androgynous look, the wrinkled look, and whatever floats anyone’s boat, they say.

Why? Because none of them are hetero- normative?

Discrimination in any form, done simply for the sake of alienating some group of persons, is intrinsically wrong.

But it’s problematic for me to drop all these non-heterosexual orientations/gender identities under one cumulative umbrella.

Ben in Oakland
May 7th, 2014 | LINK

“Libria, you can pick all the cherries from all the trees, but it remains that there is no agreed upon, objective, scientific, empirical test or definition for sexual orientation. The APA itself offers several differing definitions.”

So, baker, in other words,heterosexuality doesn’t exist, either, and all of those heterosexuals who claim to be so, naturally, normally, for their entire lives, are simply deluded?

Baker
May 7th, 2014 | LINK

Eric, I should have said straight/gay/bisexual was outdated. People want to expand the set of orientations so as to not alienate or discriminate against people who aren’t focused on the traditional male vs female gender distinctions.

Priya Lynn
May 7th, 2014 | LINK

Baker said “Priya, you say “There’s never been any proof anyone has changed orientation.” The standard of “proof” is the same as the standard of proof for sexual orientation, and that is not an agreed upon, objective, scientific, empirical test, because there isn’t one.”.

There may not be a universally agreed upon test, but there are objective, scientific, and empirical tests called no-lie MRIs and penile plethysmograph. Sexual orientation can be tested and there has never been a single person who’s demonstrated a change in orientation.

Baker said “Here’s another so-called definition: “Sexual orientation also refers to a person’s sense of identity based on emotional, romantic, and/or sexual attractions, related behaviors, and membership in a community of others who share those attractions.” Therefore, if a person’s “sense of identity” changes (and there’s no agreed upon, objective, scientific, empirical standard for what that means), then his sexual orientation could change from “straight” to “bisexual” to “gay” to “straight with SSA” or whatever.”.

That definition is a political one used to help promote the false idea that people can change orientations. What one identifies as, or calls oneself often has nothing to do with their orientation. As Libria pointed out the APA says “Sexual orientation refers to an enduring pattern of emotional, romantic, and/or sexual attractions to men, women, or both sexes”. That is the only practical definition of sexual orientation and it is the one the general public understands. If we can’t agree on that definition then its time you stopped trolling here because you’re incapable of being honest. Merely changing one’s identity has no effect whatsoever on their sexual orientation.

I said “There’s never been any evidence that everything is possible with faith” and “I have scientific principles on my side,”

Baker said “supernatural faith is not within the purview of science. Science can’t prove or disprove that supernatural faith is behind anything or not behind anything. The only “scientific consensus” on the subject is that there is no scientific consensus on the subject.”.

Wrong. 97% of the members of the National Academy of Science do not believe in a personal god that interferes in the affairs of humans. The scientific concensus is that your god does not exist, and the overwhelming scientific concensus is that the onus is on you to prove your extraordinary claim of the existence of the supernatural, not on science to disprove it.

I said “The idea that anyone who believes they are same sex attracted is mistaken is utterly absurd.”

Baker said “That’s not my idea. Must be yours. I wrote about a person who is NOT mistaken about his/her sexual orientation in regard to any identity.”

Oh, no, its most certainly your idea, not mine. Witness your own words:

Again, if we use the Catholic analogy, then rather than “divorce” a disordered inclination from an alleged “who you are”, a person can instead request an annulment, whereby one may discover that one’s true “who you are” has never been married to a disordered inclination, and what’s more, that one’s true “who you are” is one’s sinless creator who precedes even the birth of one’s alleged “who you are”….Per Catholic teaching, we can have false identification of “who we are” and call that “who we are”, but our true identity remains integrated within us, and like pushing the reset button with our free will, our sense of “who we are” can be righted and restored by the grace of God. You should not read that as saying that your false identity can change its sexual orientation. Instead, it may be realizing that your false identity is not your true identity, and that your true identity is not homosexually oriented.”.

You repeatedly expressed the belief that a person may “discover” that what they thought was their orientation is not their “true who you are”. Once again, its common sense that no one who believes they are same sex attracted is mistaken. If one is same sex attracted it necessarily follows that their “true identity IS homosexually oriented”.

I said “if its true that ‘Everything is possible for one who has faith’ then appear in my living room when you read this and I’ll convert to Catholicism at once.”

Baker said “That’s up to you. If it’s something you want, you are the one who has to have faith.”.

What I want is to live in accordance with reality, faith has nothing to do with it. If you can’t prove “everything is possible for one who has faith” then I’m quite content as an atheist and you shouldn’t be making such outrageous claims – its dishonest.

Libria
May 7th, 2014 | LINK

Baker:
Libria, you say,“we know sexual orientation refers to !sexual attraction! to men or women,” but what you should know is that you’re refuting your previous APA quote that said “Sexual orientation refers to an enduring pattern of !emotional, romantic, and/or sexual attractions to men, women, or both sexes!.”

Semantics! You know what i meant.
Btw,you said: “other vague, subjective descriptions like the APA’s statement”.
APA’s statement is not vague. Narrow definiton of sexual orientation is “Sexual orientation refers to an enduring pattern of emotional, romantic, and/or sexual attractions to men, women, or both sexes”
Wider definition is “Sexual orientation also refers to a person’s sense of identity based on emotional, romantic, and/or sexual attractions, related behaviors, and membership in a community of others who share those attractions.”
Oh, and penile plethysmograph and magnetic resonance imaging is not scientific enough for you, ok..
But congratulations, you are smarter than whole APA and physicians, scientists, and professors. Inform the scientific community that MRI is a fraud and sexual orientation does not exist.

Baker
May 7th, 2014 | LINK

Ben, that could depend on whom you ask. Some would say heterosexuality exists, but not as most people understand it. Others may say it’s always improper to classify anyone as heterosexual. Some married persons may believe their attraction is exclusively to their “spouse” and not to the opposite sex per se, and thus not properly labelled as heterosexual. Some claim to have been heterosexual until marriage but then ceased to be heterosexual.

Priya Lynn
May 7th, 2014 | LINK

Baker said “Libria, you can pick all the cherries from all the trees, but it remains that there is no agreed upon, objective, scientific, empirical test or definition for sexual orientation. The APA itself offers several differing definitions.”.

The words you’re getting hung up on is “agreed upon”. The vast majority do agree upon a definition, it is only those with an anti-gay political agenda like you who promote an impractical and dishonest definition of sexual orientation. You are simply lying about what the APA says. They make it clear at all times that the defintion of sexual orientation is who you are romantically/sexually attracted to. That is the only practical, honest definition and that is how the vast majority of the public understands sexual orientation. And once again, there may be no agree upon test for sexual orientation (because people like you want to keep up the “you can change” lie) but there are objective, scientific, and empiracle tests, the no-lie MRI and penile plethysmograph. There’s a reason no one claiming to have changed orientation has been willing to put their claim to the test – they’re all lying, as they’ve been counselled to do.

Baker said “Neither MRI nor penile plethysmograph is an agreed upon, validated, objective, empirical, scientific test for sexual orientation. They’re devices that provide limited measurements of physiology, but the devices themselves don’t measure or define, for example, “an enduring pattern of emotional, romantic, and/or sexual attractions to men, women, or both sexes”. A human can define or interpret that, but different humans can and do interpret it differently.”.

Once again, you’re hanging your hat upon the words “agree upon” and it is only those with an anti-gay political agenda such as yourself who don’t agree what sexual orientation is. You don’t want to agree upon a defintion because that would make it much more difficult for you to lie and obfuscate about the truth that no one can change sexual orientation. The no-lie MRI and penile Plethysmograph verify immediate physical attraction to men, women,or both. We know these attractions are enduring because we have millions of examples of those who’ve never changed their attractions including many who’ve desperately tried to do so for decades but we have no examples of anyone who has actually demonstrated a change in physical attractions – ever.

Baker said And importantly, whatever interpretation is made of the device outputs, there is no agreed upon, validated, objective, empirical, scientific standard for sexual orientation by which to determine whether the interpretation is correct or incorrect.”.

Again, stop trying to hide behind your intentional attempt to deceive by not agreeing that sexual orientation is who we are attracted to. Sexual arousal determines attractions, period.

Libria said “the APA does agree person can change behavior or orientation identity(self-labeling) but not attraction,”

Baker said “but your statement lacks specificity. What attraction are you talking about? If you mean SEXUAL attraction, you should note that there is no requirement for any sexual attraction in your chosen APA definition of sexual orientation.”.

We mean romantic and/or sexual attraction, or as I put it “who you are attracted to”. That is a specific requirement of the APA defintion of sexual orientation. And few people would deny that romantic and sexual attraction are intimately related (not the honest ones anyway).

Baker said “I’ve been hearing a growing number of people of late who view the lesbian/gay/bisexual sexual orientation triad as already outdated, that it should respect all genders and even non-gendered distinctions, not just male and female but also non-binary gendered people, the transgendered, the androgynous look, the wrinkled look, and whatever floats anyone’s boat, they say.”.

You’re conflating things like gender identity with sexual orientation. Its intentional because it facilitates your deceptions. A few may feel the lesbian/gay/bisexual list of sexual orientations is incomplete or inaccurate but what still remains is that sexual orientation is “who you are attracted to”, regardless of what labels you choose to put on that group of people.

You’re desperate to avoid the only practical and honest defintion of sexual orientation because you want to deceive people about the ability to change same sex attractions into opposite sex attractions and you don’t want to admit to yourself that you’re being dishonest. You are a shameful, evil person who’s facilitating the harm of innocent gays and lesbians. When you tell someone that they can stop being gay if they want it bad enough, that God will change them if they pray hard enough, and that doesn’t happen, the emotional results are often devastating. You are partially responsible for those who’ve been devastated or even killed themselves because of dishonesty like yours.

Priya Lynn
May 7th, 2014 | LINK

Baker said “Ben, that could depend on whom you ask. Some would say heterosexuality exists, but not as most people understand it. Others may say it’s always improper to classify anyone as heterosexual. Some married persons may believe their attraction is exclusively to their “spouse” and not to the opposite sex per se, and thus not properly labelled as heterosexual. Some claim to have been heterosexual until marriage but then ceased to be heterosexual.”.

Please stop with the obfuscation. “Some”, the odd person, may say any crazy thing but what matters is not what “some” out in left field person says, what matters is what the authorities say and what the vast majority of people believe. What matters is what is a practical and honest definition of sexual orientation and your’s is neither.

The mental and physical health authorites and the vast majority of the population agrees that heterosexuality and gayness exist, that no one is only attracted to their spouse and there is no such thing as stopping being heterosexual or gay after marriage.

You’re constant attempts to muddy the waters on well accepted scientific principles is just a dishonest attempt to facilitate your telling the lie that people can change who they are attracted to without feeling you are doing anything wrong – you most certainly are.

Priya Lynn
May 7th, 2014 | LINK

A quote from poster boy “ex-gay” John Paulk is fitting:

“It’s funny, for those of us that worked in it, behind closed doors, we knew we hadn’t really changed,” he says. “Our situations had changed—we had gotten married, and some of us had children, so our roles had changed. I was a husband and father; that was my identity. And the homosexuality had been tamped down. But you can only push it down for so long, and it would eke its way out every so often.”

…“I would be in hotel rooms, and I would be on my face sobbing and crying on the bed,” he says. “I felt like a liar and a hypocrite. Having to go out and give hope to these people. I was in despair knowing that what I was telling them was not entirely honest. I couldn’t do it anymore.”

etseq
May 7th, 2014 | LINK

Can we get some better apologists please? I have to chuckle though at the blatant contradictory metaphysics being employed by a proud adherent of the One True Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church, as demonstrated by the miracle of Apostolic Succession together with the charism of Papal Infallibility, which vouchsafes the Church from any and all error regarding faith and morals. All of which rests on a belief in objective, absolute Truth, as defined and promulgated by the Church in accordance with Aristotelian/Thomistic Natural law. Contrast that with the bizarre post-modern approach taken by our Catholic spambot, who apparently has the Catechism memorized but when it comes to non-mythological disciplines, such as Psychology, Sociology, Biology, Genetics, etc. his blind obedience to the Magisterium becomes a curious heuristic through which to “interpret” modern science. Words suddenly lose objective meaning, subjectivity is privileged, and scientific consensus is rejected as an oppressive system of social control. It is almost like a parody of foucault that ironically demonstrates the absurdity of post-structuralism. The Roman Catholic Church has historically rejected subjectivism and nominalism when it comes to Natural Law but I supposed a Papal Dispensation was obtained for their use in the war against Modernity.

Finally, seems the original author, Richard G Evans, like most ex-gay/celibates types, has a history that contradicts their tidy narrative. In fact, just a few years ago he apparently left the Catholic Church for the Episcopal Church where he “no longer feel(s) [he] must be celibate or burn” See his comment on a blog post from 2010.

http://killingthebuddha.com/ktblog/rude-awakening-for-progressive-catholics/

“Richard G Evans
November 20th, 2010 at 5:07 pm

Amazing, Rick. I returned to “Rome” after 35 years at age 49, was confirmed at age 50, and very actively involved in parish work for nearly 5 years. This fall all of my ever increasing discomfort with the “new politics” of Roman Catholicism, as well as what I believe to be historical contradictions both before and after Vatican II regarding the Church’s role in the world, caused me to rethink my position. And yet I wished to remain Catholic, as I truly love my Church…2 weeks ago I also joined the Episcopal Church and worldwide Anglican communion. I am now an unashamedly gay catholic Christian. I no longer feel I must be celibate or burn. And I still have the traditions of the Faith which I learned as a child. Thank you for your words, Rick. And welcome home PAST Rome.”

Rob Tisinai
May 7th, 2014 | LINK

etseq, that’s an amazing find!

Baker
May 7th, 2014 | LINK

Priya, I already posted on the subject of your so-called “no-lie” MRI and penile plethysmograph tests. They’re not established to actually test “sexual orientation” (e.g. “an enduring pattern of emotional, romantic, and/or sexual attractions to men, women, or both sexes”), and also and accordingly, not established to be “no-lie”. And as the tests generally involve looking at pornography, they can’t and haven’t been tested on volunteers who object to pornography.

In regard to one of the many differing APA definitions of sexual orientation, tou say “That definition is political”. In other words, that definition doesn’t fit your political agenda. But it remains one of the APA’s definitions of sexual orientation.

You say, “If we can’t agree on that definition then its time you stopped trolling here because you’re incapable of being honest.” I agree on every definition, but not to the exclusion of the ones you don’t like. They’re all the APA’s definitions.

You say “Merely changing one’s identity has no effect whatsoever on their sexual orientation,” but that’s a matter of opinion, same as the definition of “sexual orientation” is a matter of opinion.

You say, “97% of the members of the National Academy of Science do not believe in a personal god that interferes in the affairs of humans,” but you’re referring to a poll of their personal opinions on a non-science matter. It’s not a “scientific consensus”. Again, the supernatural is not within the purview of science. Science can’t prove or disprove the existence of a supernatural being nor whether any affair of humans is affected by a supernatural being.

You say “You repeatedly expressed the belief that a person may ‘discover’ that what they thought was their orientation is not their ‘true who you are’”. No, that’s your backwards misinterpretation. What I said was that a person may discover that his false identity is not his true identity and that his true identity is not homosexually oriented and has never been married to a disordered inclination. Again, it’s about a person who is NOT mistaken about his sexual orientation in regard to any identity. The sexual orientation of each identity may be exactly what he believes it to be in regard to that particular identity. His issue is which identity is his true identity. (NB: If you attempt to read any of this with some notion in your head that a person’s “identity” is a sexual orientation, you are going to be off to a bad start. The identity of the person in my example is NOT a sexual orientation.)

You say “no one who believes they are same sex attracted is mistaken,” but you’ve repeatedly been mistaken.

You say “If you can’t prove ‘everything is possible for one who has faith’ then I’m quite content as an atheist and you shouldn’t be making such outrageous claims – its dishonest.” It’s not my claim and I didn’t claim it’s true. I only said someone can say it. There’s nothing “outrageous” about saying someone can say it. Most anyone can say it. But if you want proof whether the claim is true, the claim is quite clear that it’s up to you.

Priya Lynn
May 7th, 2014 | LINK

Hypocritically, Baker continues to post after pleading “Now, “Can we give [the religion and science vs religion blather] a rest for a while?” I think our kind and patient host has suggested something along those lines. It’s been pleasant chatting with you, Priya.”.

Obviously he’s content for me not to respond to his posts but he’s not content for him not to respond to my posts as he’s posted three times since he asked that “we” give it a rest.

Baker said “Priya, I already posted on the subject of your so-called “no-lie” MRI and penile plethysmograph tests. They’re not established to actually test “sexual orientation” (e.g. “an enduring pattern of emotional, romantic, and/or sexual attractions to men, women, or both sexes”), and also and accordingly, not established to be “no-lie”. And as the tests generally involve looking at pornography, they can’t and haven’t been tested on volunteers who object to pornography.”.

Baker, they’re well established tests to determine the present state of one’s attractions. Since no one has ever demonstrated a change of attractions they establish that this is “an enduring pattern”. The “I don’t look at pornography” excuse is just a convenient way to avoid being exposed as a liar. If anyone truly believed they had changed orientation and they could save thousands of people from eternal torture by proving it they’d be falling all over themselves to get tested.

Baker said “In regard to one of the many differing APA definitions of sexual orientation, tou say “That definition is political”. In other words, that definition doesn’t fit your political agenda. But it remains one of the APA’s definitions of sexual orientation.”.

Now you’re lying. I never said the APA’s definition of sexual orientation is political, I said YOURS is. YOUR definition where you claim sexual orientation is determined by sexual identity (what one labels themselves). You are also lying about the APA having many different definitions of sexual orientation, their position is 100% consistent: sexual orientation is who you’re attracted to.

I said “If we can’t agree on that definition then its time you stopped trolling here because you’re incapable of being honest.”

Baker said “I agree on every definition, but not to the exclusion of the ones you don’t like. They’re all the APA’s definitions.”. No, you’re lying. The APA only defines sexual orientation as who you are attracted to. You keep claiming that its valid to define sexual orientation as “what you label yourself”. That is irrational and dishonest. Your definition of sexual orientation is incompatible with the APA’s defnition and the way the vast majority of teh public understands it. Only anti-gay bigots seeking to oppress gays with dishonest tactics define sexual orientation in terms of self-labeling.

I said “Merely changing one’s identity has no effect whatsoever on their sexual orientation,”

Baker said “but that’s a matter of opinion, same as the definition of “sexual orientation” is a matter of opinion.”.

No, its not a matter of opinion, There is no proven example of anyone changing orientation despite thousands desperately trying to do so. There are millions of examples of people who’s orientation has never changed. The claim that people can change same sex attractions into opposite sex attractions is an extraordiary one. The overwhelming concensus of the scientific community is that extraordianary claims require extraordinary evidence and the onus is on you to prove your claim, not on anyone to disprove it. You are utterly unable to justify logically your use of a defintion of sexual orientation other than “who we are attracted to”. Whereas clearly that defintion is the only practical, logical, and honest one. That’s why you won’t agree to it, if you did it would hamper your dishonest attempts to claim people can change same sex attractions into opposite sex attractions.

I said “97% of the members of the National Academy of Science do not believe in a personal god that interferes in the affairs of humans,”.

Baker said “but you’re referring to a poll of their personal opinions on a non-science matter. It’s not a “scientific consensus”.”.

ALL things are a scientific matter. It is an extraodinary claim to say there are things that can’t be explained by science, once again, the onus is on you to prove your claim, not on the skeptic to disprove it.

Baker said “Again, the supernatural is not within the purview of science. Science can’t prove or disprove the existence of a supernatural being nor whether any affair of humans is affected by a supernatural being.”.

You haven’t established that, that is an extraordinary claim. The overwhelming concensus of scientists is that the onus is on you to prove your claim, not on science to disprove it. Despite thousands of years of millions of people desperately searching for evidence your god exists none has been found. The only reasonable conclusion is that your god does not exist. There is no reality for which a god is required to create an explanation. It’s Occam’s razor, if an explanation can be made without a particular step there is no reason to believe that particular step (a god) exists. Science is on my side, you have nothing but unsupported assertions and blind faith which is not a virtue. You should be ashamed of yourself.

I said “You repeatedly expressed the belief that a person may ‘discover’ that what they thought was their orientation is not their ‘true who you are’”.

Baker said No, that’s your backwards misinterpretation. What I said was that a person may discover that his false identity is not his true identity and that his true identity is not homosexually oriented and has never been married to a disordered inclination. Again, it’s about a person who is NOT mistaken about his sexual orientation in regard to any identity.”.

Nonsense. If a person has a “false identity” as you assert they may then it necessarily follows they are mistaken about their sexual orientation. I interpreted you precisely, it is you who’s trying to wiggle out of the meaning of your words. The only true identity is that which reflects who a person is attracted to, no one is mistaken about who they are attracted to so any identity that does not reflect that is a false identity. If you are same sex attracted you are “homosexually oriented” and that is that person’s “inclination” whether you want to call it disorderd or not. If the “inclination” is disordered and the behavior is evil, the person is disordred and evil, you can never seperate who a person is from their “inclinations” and behaviors.

Baker said “The sexual orientation of each identity may be exactly what he believes it to be in regard to that particular identity. His issue is which identity is his true identity. (NB: If you attempt to read any of this with some notion in your head that a person’s “identity” is a sexual orientation, you are going to be off to a bad start. The identity of the person in my example is NOT a sexual orientation.)”.

See, now you’re contradicting yourself (or what, as you childishly and dishonestly put it, “one person might say”). What you said was “Here’s another so-called definition: “Sexual orientation also refers to a person’s sense of identity…Therefore, if a person’s “sense of identity” changes (and there’s no agreed upon, objective, scientific, empirical standard for what that means), then his sexual orientation could change from “straight” to “bisexual” to “gay” to “straight with SSA” or whatever.”. There you said a person’s identity is a sexual orientation, and now because it suits your dishonest purposes you’re saying it isn’t. You’re a disgrace, you should be ashamed of yourself.
I said “no one who believes they are same sex attracted is mistaken,”

Baker said “but you’ve repeatedly been mistaken.”.

You assert that I’ve been repeatedly mistaken but your assertion is unsupported, you’ve not given proof of a single example of me being mistaken. Instead it is you who dissembles, conflates sperate issues to avoid accountability and deceive and contradicts himself readily when it suits your immediate purpose.

I said “If you can’t prove ‘everything is possible for one who has faith’ then I’m quite content as an atheist and you shouldn’t be making such outrageous claims – its dishonest.

Baker said “It’s not my claim and I didn’t claim it’s true. I only said someone can say it. There’s nothing “outrageous” about saying someone can say it. Most anyone can say it.”.

That’s another good example of your attempt to deceive. Instead of accepting responsibility for your claims, you phrase them as “Someone can say” “another definition is” and then when you are confronted with rational arguments against your claim you change the subject and avoid admitting you’re obviously wrong by disingenously saying “I didn’t say that”.

Baker said ” But if you want proof whether the claim is true, the claim is quite clear that it’s up to you.”.

Absolutely not. That is an extraordiary claim and it is the overwhelming concensus of the scientific community that such claims require extraordinary proof and the onus is on you to prove your claim (and it is YOUR claim despite your attempt to hide behind “someone can say it”) not on the skeptic to disprove it.

It is not normal for a person to be as obsessed with suppressing gayness as you are. When you tell someone that they can stop being gay if they want it bad enough, that God will change them if they pray hard enough, and that doesn’t happen, the emotional results are often devastating and sometimes result in suicide. For you to callously promote this shows you are a sick person. No mentally healthy person is this obsessed with suppressing gayness and at the same time so indifferent to the harm they’re causing. You need to get help. You need counselling from a reputable (non-catholic) source.

Ben in Oakland
May 7th, 2014 | LINK

Some would say that this is a virtuoso display of pedantry, sophistry, and social solipsism. Some would say that some would say all kinds of things, denied by objective reality, and still claim that they are right simply be use they are too solipsistic to see their solipsism.

I’d Certainly say that.

Eric Payne
May 7th, 2014 | LINK

Ben in Oakland says:

Some would say that this is a virtuoso display of pedantry, sophistry, and social solipsism. Some would say that some would say all kinds of things, denied by objective reality, and still claim that they are right simply be use they are too solipsistic to see their solipsism.

And some would say the amazing amount of back-bending, doubling back and further explanations of explanations Baker posts is simple bullshittery.

I’d certainly say that.

etseq
May 7th, 2014 | LINK

Rob,

Oh, there is a lot more on this “celibate” guy – he has been all over the map as far back as the mid 2000s in blog comments, articles, etc. The more research I have done, the less angry I am and just sad for the guy. He is an older man, who obviously has struggled with accepting himself for decades. If his latest article wasn’t so condescending and critical of gay rights, I’d say leave him alone but since he has signed onto the ROL, Dougie M., Witherspoon/Regnerus agenda and has made no effort to hide his identity on the internet (he always used his full name – no handles), he has really opened himself up for charges of hypocrisy.

Ben in Oakland
May 7th, 2014 | LINK

Estes, do you mean that being the kind of homo hating homo that would write anything for Witherspoon wouldn’t be sufficient?

etseq
May 7th, 2014 | LINK

No, its definitely sufficient and I’ll be tweeting out links to several of the links I found on the net. Normally, the politically active ex-gays elicit the opposite of empathy from me – I hold them more responsible in some ways for the damage they do, especially to kids. Seeing this guy go from anti-gay to pro-gay then back to anti-gay just makes me hope that he ends up back in the better place. Again, won’t stop be from exposing him but just makes me sad rather than mad…

Baker
May 7th, 2014 | LINK

Priya, you say “Now you’re lying. I never said the APA’s definition of sexual orientation is political, I said YOURS is. YOUR definition where you claim sexual orientation is determined by sexual identity”.

Well, in case you do not realize it, when I wrote “Here’s another so-called definition: ‘Sexual orientation also refers to a person’s sense of identity based on emotional, romantic, and/or sexual attractions, related behaviors, and membership in a community of others who share those attractions.’,” that definition provided is one of the APA’s definitions. You then quoted it and said “That definition is a political one used to help promote the false idea that people can change orientations.”

You say, “You keep claiming that its valid to define sexual orientation as ‘what you label yourself’. That is irrational and dishonest.” What are you talking about? I provided an APA definition. If you think their definition is irrational and dishonest, take it up with them.

You say, “You are also lying about the APA having many different definitions of sexual orientation, their position is 100% consistent: sexual orientation is who you’re attracted to.” No, the APA identifies multiple different definitions for sexual orientation, whether you recognize that fact or not, as I’ve already listed, and they do not include nor do they boil down to “sexual orientation is who you’re attracted to”. Sexual orientation is not a “who”. The very first sentence on their related web page says “Sexual orientation refers to an enduring pattern of emotional, romantic, and/or sexual attractions to men, women, or both sexes.” You can also check Wikipedia, which states that “Sexual orientation is an enduring personal quality [...]“. Again, that is not a “who”. Likewise, “gay” is not “who you are”. You are not a sexual orientation.

You say “they’re well established tests to determine the present state of one’s attractions.” The specific issue is tests for sexual orientation, which can mean different things depending on which definition one uses. And depending on the definition, the “test” can amount to little more than deciding for oneself what one’s sexual orientation currently is, and you can retest at different times and come up with different answers over time. A self-test is in fact the most commonly used test/method and can even be said to be “well-established” on that basis.

But if you’re talking about a physiological test like an MRI or penile plethysmograph, such tests are nowhere near ready for dictating a randomly selected person’s sexual orientation under the APA’s definition.

You say “There is no proven example of anyone changing orientation despite thousands desperately trying to do so.” We’ve been over this already. It depends on the definition and test. Likewise, it could be structured such that you can’t prove that you’re gay or whatever sexual orientation you claim to have.

You say, “You are utterly unable to justify logically your use of a definition of sexual orientation other than ‘who we are attracted to’.” Of course I can. You can check the fourth paragraph of this post for starters. I also note, for example, that your purported “definition” (1) has no time reference to it other than the present “are”, unlike the APA definition that includes the word “enduring”; (2) doesn’t identify the judge; (3) refers to “we” rather than to an individual person; (4) does not scope the attraction to just “emotional, romantic, and/or sexual” as in the APA definition, and consequently could include, for example, intellectual attraction to a good teacher, or to a good leader for guidance, to a celebrity for popularity, to a crowd of people for social reasons, to one’s own infant child or family members for familial reasons, etc; (5) has no age limitation meaning one could have a sexual orientation to children, etc.

You say “The claim that people can change same sex attractions into opposite sex attractions is an extraordinary one.” But it’s not extraordinary if the definition/standard and test are not extraordinary. Just saying it’s “extraordinary” doesn’t make it so. Again, a “well-established” test can be a person deciding for himself. And with that test, it’s not been “extraordinary” for quite a number of people to claim/decide for themselves that they’ve had a change in sexual orientation.

You say “ALL things are a scientific matter. It is an extraordinary claim to say there are things that can’t be explained by science.” Previously you cited the National Academy of Sciences as if you respect what they say, and they say “Because [supernatural entities] are not a part of nature, supernatural entities cannot be investigated by science”, and for example, “Creationism, intelligent design, and other claims of supernatural intervention in the origin of life or of species are not science because they are not testable by the methods of science.”

Science isn’t on your side. Some men in white coats may be coming to your side.

The rest of your post, as always, is simply more of your never ending lunacy.

etseq
May 7th, 2014 | LINK

More word salad from the celibacy concern troll…Maybe you will get the point in Latin, the language your cult fetishizes:

Brevior saltare cum deformibus viris est vita!

Trans: Life is too short to dance with ugly men!

Ben in Oakland
May 8th, 2014 | LINK

Etseq, you left out the most important quote from Humpty Dumpty. Unfortunately, I don’t have it in the original Wonderlandish, so we’ll have to go with the best English translation: “words mean what I say they mean. Nothing more and nothing less.”

William Fisher
May 8th, 2014 | LINK

Baker, you still haven’t told us what meaning, if any, YOU attach to the term “sexual orientation”. Unless and until you do that, any assertion of yours on the matter is, for all practical purposes, quite meaningless.

Ben in Oakland
May 8th, 2014 | LINK

My guess is that underneath it all, baker’s a homo-hating-homo. I’ve encountered the method before.

Priya Lynn
May 8th, 2014 | LINK

Baker, you’re just going in circles, I’ve heard and refuted all your B.S. at least three times before. You’ve lied repeatedly about what I’ve said, about what the APA said, and what you’ve said. You’ve contradicted yourself repeatedly, conflated unrelated issues, and produced a flood of word salad. On top of that you’ve repeatedly made assertions with phrases like “Some would say” and “another defnition is” in order to avoid taking responsibility for YOUR assertions and to give yourself an excuse to change the subject when I’ve asked you to justify those assertions. You are a weasily, dishonest person and so I will not be wasting any effort refuting your idiocy for a fourth time.

No normal person is as obsessed with suppressing gayness as you are. What your obsession shows is that you are a sick person and until you accept that you will never get on the road to wellness.

When you tell someone that they can stop being gay if they want it bad enough, that God will change them if they pray hard enough, and that doesn’t happen, the emotional results are often devastating and sometimes result in suicide. For you to callously promote this is a grave injustice. No mentally healthy person is this obsessed with suppressing gayness and at the same time so indifferent to the harm they’re causing. If you want to loathe yourself for your harmless gayness, that is one thing, but please stop trying to drag innocent gays and lesbians into your cesspool. You need help. Please get counselling from a reputable (non-catholic) source.

Baker
May 8th, 2014 | LINK

William Fisher, apply your reasoning to your own post.

Baker
May 8th, 2014 | LINK

Priya, it is true that I’ve “made assertions with phrases like ‘Some would say’ and ‘another definition is’”. For example, I wrote “Here’s another so-called definition: ‘Sexual orientation also refers to a person’s sense of identity based on emotional, romantic, and/or sexual attractions, related behaviors, and membership in a community of others who share those attractions.’”

It’s not offered “to avoid taking responsibility” for anything. Rather, it’s offered as something for consideration in regard to claims of sexual orientation change, possible or actual.

You dismissed the definition and said, “That definition is a political one used to help promote the false idea that people can change orientations.”

I then pointed out that it’s “one of the APA’s definitions of sexual orientation.”

You responded: “Now you’re lying. I never said the APA’s definition of sexual orientation is political, I said YOURS is. YOUR definition where you claim sexual orientation is determined by sexual identity (what one labels themselves). You are also lying about the APA having many different definitions of sexual orientation, their position is 100% consistent: sexual orientation is who you’re attracted to.”

You are mistaken, to put it mildly. The definition I posted is not mine. It is one of the APA’s definitions found at http://www.apa.org/topics/lgbt/orientation.aspx?item=2

I respect the demonstrable fact that there are many definitions for “sexual orientation”, same as there are different definitions for “gay”. And if someone flies a rainbow flag over his “fabulous” home that he shares with his boyfriend and poodles but he says he’s not “gay” (or “homosexual” or “bisexual”), I respect that he may very well be telling the truth. Telling you this is not “suppressing gayness”. It’s respecting diversity.

In regard to your “obsession” about “suppressing gayness”, I don’t share it but you’re free to believe whatever you want. Again, I respect diversity. Including with my vote.

Be gay always!

William Fisher
May 8th, 2014 | LINK

Baker:

“Sexual orientation refers to an enduring pattern of emotional, romantic, and/or sexual attractions to men, women, or both sexes. Sexual orientation also refers to a person’s sense of identity based on those attractions, related behaviors, and membership in a community of others who share those attractions.” – APA

The PRIMARY sense of the term “sexual orientation” is that contained in the first of the above sentences. A person’s sense of identity based on his/her sexual attractions can be changed, no doubt. So also can related behaviours and membership in a community of others who share those attractions. But can sexual orientation as defined in the first sentence change? The evidence suggests that it may, but most usually does not, and that change of this kind in males is definitely exceptional. More to the point, can sexual orientation in this sense be DELIBERATELY changed, e.g. by means of “ex-gay ministry” or “conversion therapy”?

An absolute denial of the possibility would perhaps be reckless. After all, you can seldom or never prove a universal negative. But while I cannot prove that NO-ONE’S sexual orientation has EVER been changed by such means – and the same could be said equally about the cure of organic illnesses by Christian Science, spirit healing, or any other form of hocus-pocus that you care to think of – the weight of the evidence is that change of sexual orientation in that primary sense cannot be deliberately engineered. To encourage people to waste precious years or even decades of their lives, as sometimes happens, on such a wild-goose chase is deceitful and profoundly immoral.

Baker
May 8th, 2014 | LINK

William Fisher, whether any particular definition is the primary sense of a term is a matter of opinion, not only in regard to the term at hand but also in regard to the term “primary sense”. For example, I don’t believe any of the APA’s long or vague definitions on that page are the popular everyday sense of the term “sexual orientation”. I checked common everyday dictionaries and found instead such things as “one’s natural preference in sexual partners” and “the inclination of an individual with respect to heterosexual, homosexual, and bisexual behavior.”

Secondly (and just because I state it secondly doesn’t mean it’s not as important or more important or more relevant than the first point), none of the sentences that you quoted nor any on the APA page mandate that the first definition must be a requirement of the second definition or any other definition. The first definition requires “an enduring pattern” but the second definition does not.

Likewise, the APA later says on that same page that “one’s sexual orientation defines the group of people in which one is likely to find the satisfying and fulfilling romantic relationships.” There’s not even an attraction requirement in that definition, nor any “enduring pattern” requirement, nor any mention of “men, women, or both sexes”.

The meanings of the definitions are themselves also open to interpretation. For example, “romantic” can mean “having no basis in fact; imaginary” and “imbued with or dominated by idealism, a desire for adventure” and “characterized by a preoccupation with love”. There’s plenty of room in those definitions for “romantic” to amount to whimsy, transient or enduring, or to be restricted in accordance with one’s religious beliefs.

In regard to your question “But can sexual orientation as defined in the first sentence change?”, one obvious clue is that definition itself allows for change by requiring only an “enduring” not a fixed or permanent pattern of attraction, and thus on that basis alone one could answer “yes”. But there are additional reasons for “yes” as I’ll get into in the paragraphs below.

You say “the evidence suggests that it may, but most usually does not,” but here again, that depends on what constitutes “enduring”. For example, if more than a few young adults experiment with their sexuality but eventually settle this way or that, then it may be said that their patterns of attractions were not enduring and not “definitely exceptional”. And so here again, we have more support for a “yes” answer to the question “can sexual orientation as defined in the first sentence change?”

You ask, “More to the point, can sexual orientation in this sense be DELIBERATELY changed, e.g. by means of ‘ex-gay ministry’ or ‘conversion therapy’?”

Building further on the previous “yes”, I think it’s possible that ministry/therapy could contribute in some degree to a change in sexual orientation. I cannot say how much of a change on a population basis, but for a particular individual person, it might contribute substantially, in any direction — less gay, more gay, etc. But whether it’s a small change or a large change, any change is change. People might forget that point when considering whether “change” can be “deliberately engineered.”

Perhaps you had in mind a change from “gay” to “bisexual” or “bisexual” to “straight”. Here again, even a small change could cause a shift between these labels. The APA page notes, “Research over several decades has demonstrated that sexual orientation ranges along a continuum, from exclusive attraction to the other sex to exclusive attraction to the same sex.” If we assume that the labels “gay”, “bisexual” and “straight” correspond to specific ranges along the aforementioned continuum, even a small shift could shift some persons from one label to another if those persons had previously been close to the dividing points along the continuum. This point can thus be construed as further support for a “yes” answer to your question.

You say that “To encourage people to waste precious years or even decades of their lives, as sometimes happens, on such a wild-goose chase is deceitful and profoundly immoral.” Different people have different opinions and different values on the subject. I appreciate it when people share their opinions and views. Thank you for sharing yours.

etseq
May 8th, 2014 | LINK

I think we’ve reached the point of no return and “don’t feed the trolls” applies…

Ben in Oakland
May 9th, 2014 | LINK

Baker, first you say sexual orientation doesn’t exist and has no inherent meaning, then you talk about changing it. Then you say that it’s all about personal interpretation, again detaching it from actual experience.

All of this is a transparent attempt to delegitimize the existence of gay people and our experiences in our lives. You’re not the first person to do this, and you won’t be the last.

I agree with Etseq. You’re not being honest, just playing word games. I don’t see what you get out of it, except perhaps the legitimization of your experience. Personally, I don’t wish to provide the lube for your intellectual masturbation.

Have a nice day.

Baker
May 9th, 2014 | LINK

Ben, you guessed wrong. Thanks anyway.

William Fisher
May 9th, 2014 | LINK

Baker, you can play word games until the moon fails, but you won’t thereby abolish reality.

The evidence that either “ministry” or “therapy” can change anyone’s sexual orientation – in the sense of whether those to whom they are sexually attracted are of the other sex, of the same sex, or of both sexes – or can contribute in any degree to a change in sexual orientation in that sense, is extremely poor. Like the evidence for the efficacy of, for example, “psychic surgery”, it’s poor enough to justify the conclusion that it doesn’t work.

Pleading that something else that can loosely be referred to as sexual orientation, e.g. one’s sense of identity, one’s sexual behaviour, or whom one hangs around with, can be altered is simply a dishonest and clumsy attempt to cloud the issue and to justify deceiving people.

Timothy Kincaid
May 9th, 2014 | LINK

Okay, this is going nowhere. Rather than have any meaningful conversation (which requires a shared meaning of words) there is instead an endless debate on what words mean.

So, for the sake of argument, I hereby declare (cue the trumpets) with much aplomb and great ceremonial dignity, that for the sake of conversation and debate on this thread at this site,

Sexual orientation is defined as the innate direction of one’s emotional, sexual, and (for those who believe in such a thing) spiritual attraction.

Baker, if that is something you can work with in terms of having conversation, then fine. Otherwise I’d suggest that people politely disengage with you because at this point it is beginning to appear that you are debating for the sake of debating and do not desire meaningful conversation.

Eric Payne
May 9th, 2014 | LINK

Doesn’t it all depend on what the definition of “is” is?

Sorry… couldn’t resist, not with Lewinski being back in the news, comparing herself to Tyler Clementi ferchristsake…

Richard Rush
May 9th, 2014 | LINK

Baker, you must be living in abject torment over your own sexuality. Otherwise, I cannot imagine why you would go to such extremes of pondering, parsing, and dissecting the definition of sexual orientation, and then continue to ruminate over it.

For myself, it couldn’t be simpler: I’m attracted to guys, and in 69 years of life I have never encountered a female that I found sexually attractive. My partner of 33 years would say the same thing. If I also felt attracted to women, I’d like to think I would just shrug, and say I’m bisexual, but the world we live in doesn’t make it quite that easy . . . yet. In my teens I thought that maybe my attractions would change, but of course, in hindsight, it was just wishful thinking due to social “expectations.”

In the 21st Century, a person’s torment over their sexuality is almost entirely due to being directly or indirectly subjected to the suffocating bondage of intolerant religious beliefs. When I was growing up, intolerance was pervasive throughout society, and although religious history may have been the root cause, I just didn’t perceive it as such.

When sexual orientation is in conflict with religion, it is pathetic how often people are duped into believing it’s their sexuality that needs fixing instead of their adherence to thoroughly unsubstantiated beliefs which were largely designed to do what they do best ~ suck people into a suffocating bondage without them realizing what is happening to them.

Priya Lynn
May 9th, 2014 | LINK

Baker, its time you fullfilled your own request made dozens of comments ago:

“Now, “Can we give [the religion and science vs religion blather] a rest for a while?” I think our kind and patient host has suggested something along those lines.”

Priya Lynn
May 9th, 2014 | LINK

Apparently for Baker “giving it a rest” doesn’t apply to himself, only to others.

Baker
May 9th, 2014 | LINK

William Fisher, I would agree, as the APA has also noted, that the research on the subject is poor, caused by, not least, an often inconsistent and/or often undefined terminology and methodology. It is not dishonest to point out that various things which been called “sexual orientation”, or “sexual preference” or whatever the term of the moment may be, can be altered. It’s a statement of fact with which you and the APA have agreed. Respectful people respect facts.

Eric Payne
May 9th, 2014 | LINK

Baker,

Give it a rest already.

Your definition of “sexual orientation,” and the mental gymnastics you pet yourself through to give yourself an “out” as to orientation being innate are not only cumbersome — they’re tiring.

You don’t want to be gay. Fine, we get that.

You know, Baker, according to the DSM IV, there’s a disorder named “egodystonic homosexuality.” It might do you well to consult a professional therapist.

ego-dystonic homosexuality n.
A psychosexual disorder in which an individual has persistent distress associated with same-sex preference and is unable to initiate or maintain heterosexual relationships, usually experiencing a strong need to change the behavior or, at least, to alleviate the distress associated with the homosexual preference.

In layman’s terms, it’s the inability of a homosexually oriented person to recognize their orientation as being a normal sexual orientation.

Baker, it appears you have issues; issue which an electronic on-line forum, or any public forum, are ill-equipped to offer aid or assistance. Please, seek a non-church dogma leashed professional.

Baker
May 9th, 2014 | LINK

Timothy, I’m not sure how to interpret your definition. It’s a novel addition in that I don’t recall any study that used it. Is “spiritual attraction” a supernatural attraction, and how is it testable? “Innate” too is an interesting addition, considering that the APA’s definition(s) doesn’t define sexual orientation as innate, not to mention the difficulties in regard to testing innateness. I appreciate that you offered your definition “for the sake of argument”, but as I’d think you already know, one of the many religious arguments is that a heterosexual orientation is “innate” by “design” as “right reason”, they say, would dictate. Were you intending that to be considered in understanding your definition?

Baker
May 9th, 2014 | LINK

Priya, it was not a unilateral request upon one person. It was a question using the word “we”. Unless “we”, not just one person, act in accordance with the request, then the answer is not “yes”. Further, there was no time specified in the request, and thus it may remain open. Yet, Timothy has now himself added a spiritual aspect to the discussion.

Baker
May 9th, 2014 | LINK

Eric, sorry to burst your delusion, but I do not suffer from your “egodystonic homosexuality” disorder or anything else that you imagine me to have. But I’m happy to be your patient if you wish to play doctor, because I know you are just fooling yourself. And regarding “an ‘out’ as to orientation being innate”, the APA maintains an “out” for itself by not declaring it to be innate.

Eric Payne
May 9th, 2014 | LINK

Yeah. Sure. Whatever you say.

Baker
May 9th, 2014 | LINK

It’s been an interesting chat, but the one who’s been called a “homo-hating-homo” with “egodystonic homosexuality disorder” is treating many of his “homo” friends to a vacation. Feel free to include yourself in that group if you want. I’m sure you can appreciate the vacation too. Thanks for chatting!

Timothy Kincaid
May 9th, 2014 | LINK

Baker,

Clearly you have no interest in communicating. I have little use for determined obfuscation or word games intended at stroking ones own ego.

I’m disengaging and encourage others to do likewise.

Timothy Kincaid
May 9th, 2014 | LINK

Priya Lynn,

If you want Baker to give it a rest, don’t respond.

Libria
May 9th, 2014 | LINK

Sorry, Timothy.
Baker:

APA, APA, APA…blah,blah
APA is not the only scientific and professional organization that defines the sexual orientation in this way.

American Psychological Association, American psychiatric association, American Academy of Pediatrics, Royal College of Psychiatrists, The World Health Organization…
There is a the scientific consensus on sexual orientation.
And human experience(and common sense) speaks for itself.

Priya Lynn
May 9th, 2014 | LINK

I haven’t responded for some time Timothy.

Timothy Kincaid
May 9th, 2014 | LINK

Thank you

William Fisher
May 9th, 2014 | LINK

Baker, it most certainly is dishonest to make claims about sexual orientation, and its alleged mutability by means of “ex-gay ministry” or “conversion therapy”, if the term is being used in such a way as to give the impression that it refers to sexual attraction to people of one sex or the other (or both), when the person is REALLY and covertly using the term to refer to something else. Anyone discovered to have been using language in this way when giving sworn evidence in court would get done for perjury, and rightly so. They would not escape conviction and due punishment by pleading that “different people have different opinions and different values on the subject”. Respectful people not only respect facts; they refrain from stating them in a misleading and therefore deceitful way.

StraightGrandmother
May 9th, 2014 | LINK

I can’t find the sweet article where so many of you wished me well on my hip replacement. Your kind thoughts are appreciated.

I wish I could say it went well, but it didn’t. Today is day 10 and the first relatively pain free day. The surgeon was great, did a fine job. But the nursing and patient support staff not so much, shall we say. It’s all a horrid story I would at this point rather not share the details of. Well one, I stiff armed the nurses aid who insisted on rolling me over on my incision the day after surgery, the day which they gave me NO PAIN MEDICATION, the day after my surgery. Nurses aid now claiming workmanship comp, but I did NOT get rolled over. When I say “No” I really mean it.

Today is the BEST day, my primary care stepped in and prescribed me proper pain meds which I took this afternoon, so bottom line I’m better. And I hope every day better. I haven’t decided if I should take the Xanax the Primary care prescribed for me to take tonight. It was a completely traumatizing ordeal. But now, after 10 days, now I have hope and manageable pain.

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