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June 15, 2006

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hinla

Grant,

Thanks for your clearly written response.

The main objection I have to your substantive analysis is that you rely on federal law when you say that it is unclear whether gays are a suspect class.

Current marriage litigation is taking place at the state level. Consider the pending Washington litigation. Under Washington State law sexual orientation is already a suspect classification under well-settled precedent. So, that undermines your analysis. In some of the other states where marriage litigation is taking place, states opt for a sliding scale approach to equal protection law and the entire concept of suspect classes is irrelevant.

Another objection that I have to your argument is your suggestion that gays may be less likely to be monogamous and that's why they shouldn't have the right to marry. Many people have persuasively argued that if gays are less likely to be monogamous, part of the reason is because they can't get married in the first place. It's a "chicken or the egg" situation. If you want more info on this topic, you can look up William Eskridge's works; I believe he once wrote on this point.

Louis Kessler

"The government, rationally, prefers heterosexual marriages, because evidence reflects that they might be better at raising children, or might be more likely to remain monogomous, two interests which the government would rationally want to promote."

And if this is not true Grant, are you willing to admit there is no rational basis for making the distinction or a legitimate state interest at work here?

Point is y'all can't give a rational basis for making a distinction or point to a legitimate state interest without resorting to attempting to establish religious morality.

I can promise you whether your parents are two people of the same sex has little to do with how one turns out. It is very low on the list of significant factors compared to education poverty abuse and unconditional love.

And monogamy? You must be joking? Are you implying that hetero couples stay together more than homo couples?

Please do support this claim if monagamy and sucessful child raising are indeed the state interests you think prohibiting gay mariage would rationally advance. I'm pretty sure you cannot. And if you reveiew some of the strained arguments advanced by republicans in advancing their constitutional amendment, either could they.

But the point which you seem to be ignoring, and which makes this a equal protection issue is that gay people already live together as functioanlly married couples and raise children together in families.

After recognizing this fact, it should be moot whether the government does or does not have a rational basis for promoting heterosexual relationships over homosexual ones. They have a *much* bigger interest in avoiding uncessary costs and injustices that arise from this reality for which those marriage rights were created in the first place. Costs that could be avoided by simply affording someone who chooses to love someone of the same sex forever the same righst as someone who chooses to love someone from the opposite sex forever.

The fact is, same sex families already exist in significant numbers, and as such deserve equal protection of marriage rights privileges and presumptions.

Grant Evans

Hinla:

I think the focus here is on federal law because this is a national forum, and, as I imagine most posters here are lawyers, we can speak intelligently about federal law, but perhaps not on the nuances of state laws. The federal constitution thus provides a common ground. I think you are quite right that in states where sexual orientation is given a higher level of scrutiny under equal protection, discriminating against gay couples by not allowing them to marry is illegal.

Also, I do not mean to suggest that gay couples are less likely to be monogomous - I apologize if that is how it came across. I was merely suggesting that encouraging monogomy could be, along with child rearing, an interest involved when the state seeks to encourage marriage. From our limited interaction, I gather that you are much better versed than I on the sociological evidence of gay couple's monogomay and child-rearing success in comparison to heterosexual couples. I would never want to suggest that gay couples are less faithful - I frankly have no idea. But I think that your "chicken and the egg" point is very good and very true. If the state is seeking to encourage monogomy, you would think they would want to extend a tool for encouraging such behavior as widely as possible.

Law Fairy:

You, like Hinla, may have a better understanding than I of the sociological evidence (I am not an expert), but from my understanding, I do not consider it irrational to think that heterosexual couples may have more success in raising children, or in being monogomous (whichever is the purported state interest asserted). It might be wrong, it might be short-sighted, but it's not irrational. And ultimately, under that standard, courts should defer to the legislature. I think you and I simply disagree on whether this is rational (though, again, you may know more than I about the evidence).

Why do think sexual orientation should receive scricter scrutiny? I don't think it was the intention of the framers of the 14 amendment to do so. But of course, it was their intention to protect historically discriminated subpopulations, and gays certainly fit into that category. Do you think the Lawrence placed sexual orientation under intermediate (or even strict) scrutiny? I confess, I think that case is very confusing on exactly what the level of scrutiny is given to sexual orientation/equal protection claims.

You seem to suggest that limiting marriage licenses to heterosexual couples does not pass rational basis because the government allows single people to adopt children. But I don't think marriage is about what the state allows, but is instead about what the state encourages. I think the ability to adopt should be widely granted, in order to provide loving homes for children. I think people should have an array of choices on how to build their families. However, the state may want to throw in a little extra incentive for people to get married to members of the opposite sex, as opposed to other family types. Why? I don't know. But as long as that decision is rational, I don't see a problem with it, from a constitutional perspective.

To recycle my not-entirely apt comparison, the state allows people to buy boats, and won't make laws that prevent them from buying boats and enjoying them, but the state provides some incentives for people to make a different choice with their money, because the state rationally thinks those choices are better. Boat buyers will just have to incur costs they wouldn't have had had they used the money on education or a home or a charitable contribution.

I think it is the same with marriage. Gay people are (or should be) allowed to live together, adopt or bear children and raise those children, make wills, share property, etc. They will just have to incur the transactional costs heterosexual married couples avoid, because the state rationally thinks heterosexual relations are better and wants to encourage them. I agree that we could avoid all of these transactional costs by extending marriage to everyone, but the government has rationally decided that the benefits of using this license as an incentive outweighs the benefits of extending the license to all, regardless of qualification.

Louis Kessler

"However, the state may want to throw in a little extra incentive for people to get married to members of the opposite sex, as opposed to other family types. Why? I don't know. But as long as that decision is rational, I don't see a problem with it, from a constitutional perspective."

"I agree that we could avoid all of these transactional costs by extending marriage to everyone, but the government has rationally decided that the benefits of using this license as an incentive outweighs the benefits of extending the license to all, regardless of qualification."


I'm sorry Grant, you will have to come up with a rational basis and a legitimate interest. (I would argue a substantial relation to an important state intrest but we can leave that argument for later) That is the whole point. You can't just conclude rationality or legitimacy just by the existence of a state act.

Your argument is completely empty otherwise.

If you cannot I suggest you look into yourself and try to honestly contend with why you would want to jump to a conclusion of rationality and legitimacy for a discriminatory practice without any substantive argument to back up your conclusion.

Louis Kessler

"It might be wrong, it might be short-sighted, but it's not irrational."
yes, rational implies, at minimum, logical. If it is wrong and short sighted, simply because you think it does not make it rational if it happens to be false.

Grant Evans

Louis:

Maybe I should clarify: limiting marriage licenses to heterosexual couples may prove to be short-sighted and wrong, but as of right now, based on the evidence, I do not consider it irrational or illogical. I would not consider extending marriage to homosexuals to be irrational or illogical either. I would not consider eliminating state licensing and governmental subsidizing of marriage all together to be irrational or illogical.

You are, of course, quite right that limiting marriage to heterosexual couples must have a rational basis in a legitimate state interest. I thought I had made both the basis and the interest clear, but these are hastily made comments, and I think a lot of what I write here is very jumbled, and I apologize for the confusion.

I think the interest can be in promoting the birth of children (which is legitimate, in that a growing population has many advantages for the state), of encouraging better child-rearing (which is legitimate, in that it results in better citizens), or in encouraging monogomy (which is legitimate in that it limits the spread of sexually transmitted diseases and abandoned children).

I think it is clear that marriage has a basis in all of these interests, and whether limiting marriage to heterosexual couples is a "rational basis" is the point of this debate, as I understand it. I think it is rational (though not clearly right - but that is not the standard), based on the evidence I have seen. I am opened to arguments to the contrary. I am also open to arguments as to why the level of scrutiny should be heightened, but I think the burden is on those seeking to change the definition of marriage or heighten the scrunity given to sexual orientation distinctions to establish why doing so would be good.

I do not dispute that the practice of limiting marriage to heterosexuals is discriminatory. The current marriage policy discriminates against homosexuals, polygamists, pedophiles and people who just plain don't want to get married. I just don't see how this discrimination is any different than that experienced by boat buyers under my previsou example - other than the obviously heightened emotions - since both are subject only to rational basis review.

If that is the difference, then is the emotional reaction of the victim of the discrimination what makes us want to subject the discrimination to heightened scrutiny? Is it how widespread or historically pervasive the discrimination is? Is it the size of population of victims? I'm not sure I understand how we decide what discrimination to subject to heightened scrutiny.

I have done as you have asked and looked into myself. I have found about a gallon of Mr. Pibb.

anon

A good test would be to go to a frat party at Duke or SMU and listen to which groups are ridiculed. Women, blacks and gays would be first on the list.

hinla

Grant,

Thanks for another reasoned response to my earlier post!

I'm glad we agree that there's a STRONG case for same-sex marriage in certain state courts. I think it's important to emphasize this point. I think too many lazy people accuse state judges of being "activist" even though they never bothered to look at the state laws that the judges applied. In my opinion, those critics are being very irresponsible in their arguments.

As you can tell from my earlier policy arguments, I am all for same-sex marriage as a policy and philosophical matter. However, I'm willing to concede that the argument for same-sex marriage based on federal equal protection law is somewhat unclear. I think you AND Law Fairy both make relevant arguments.

You seem to adhere to a very traditional definition of "rational basis review." It is true that, on many occassions, the Court has equated rational basis review with extreme deference to legislators--even when those legislators were acting in poor judgment.

However, I think many legal commentators would argue that your definition of rational basis is outdated--and that Law Fairy's reasoning makes more sense. The Court's rational basis standard seems to have evolved, affording less deference to legislators and veering towards Law Fairy's style of analysis. Commentators have referred to this new standard as "rational basis with bite" or "a more searching rational basis review."

In my opinion at least, the evolution of the rational basis standard is still unclear. Explicit discussion of its evolution has been confined to legal scholarship. So, I think you and Law Fairy are both correct to some degree. After reading the majority opinion in Romer and O'Connor's concurrence in Lawrence, I am persuaded that "rational basis" is not what it used to be -- exactly what it is now, I'm not sure.

Your reading of "rational basis" seems to be very formalistic. With that in mind, I'm curious as to what you think about banning same-sex marriage as a form of sex discrimination.

As you may know, when the Hawaii Supreme Court held that opposite-sex-only marriage violated its constitution, it relied on sex discrimination arguments. The idea is that if I (a man) want to marry another man, it is because I am a man. Therefore, it is about my sex. Note that sex discrimination is subject to intermediate scrutiny under federal constitutional law.

The sex discrimination argument isn't just formalism. Many have argued that opposite-sex requirements for marriage are essentially grounded in unconstitutional sex stereotypes. For example, why do people think opposite-sex couples would make better parents? Arguably at least, it's because they make stereotyped arguments aboug gender complementation.

I should note that the Hawaii Court was not the only court to take the sex discrimination approach to analyze same-sex marriage. Concurring opinions in the Massachusetts and Vermont cases also took that approach.

I'm curious as to what you and others think about this.

Louis Kessler

Well, I think the emprical evidence proves you wrong on the child rearing. My guess is kids raised by gay couple do better on average in almost every way than kids of hetero couples, simply becaue gay people are the wealthiest demographic out there. But as others have pointed out, studies show all things being equal, having gay parents matters not to how one turns out.

I have no idea what you mean by promoting monogamy. Allowing gay marriage is promoting monagamy. My guess is those gay couple who want to be married stay together longer than the average herto couple, who can take marriage for granted.

Promoting child birth I think is your best argument, but I ask you, how is prohibiting gay people from marrying going to promote child birth? Is it that you think thses gay people who are not allowed to marry are suddenly going to become heterosexuals and start reproducing with members of the opposite sex? Doubtful.

The stronger argument is on the other side, that allowing gay marriage will provide more oportunities for unwanted children to be raised in a loving family. Disciminating against gay couples only hinders that goal.

I'm glad you've looked into yourself and saw Mr. Pibb. I was hoping you'd see a human history full of fear and discrimination against people who are different influenceing your subconcisous. Social institutions and prejudices are hard to overcome, and that applies to me as much as everyone else. I have plenty of animus and disgust for homosexuality ingrained in me. I'm just willing to recognize it and not allow it to affect what I know to be the spirit and substance of our constitutional protections.

hinla

Louis,

I know we agree on a lot, but just a point of information: Gays are NOT the wealthiest demographic out there. Gay wealth is a myth that opponents of gay rights have used to argue against sexual orientation antidiscrimination laws.

Census Data show that cohabiting same-sex couples on average make less than married opposite-sex couples. Other wage analyses show that gay men earn 17 to 28 percent less than similarly qualified heterosexual men (those studies control for variables like education, age, location, etc.).

For more info on the myth of gay affluence (and how it is used against gays), see M.V. Lee Badgett, _Money, Myths, and Change: the Economic Lives of Lesbians and Gay men_ (University of Chicago Press 2001).

Louis Kessler

Hinla, I was definitely under the spell of that myth, although I swear I do remember seeing a census statistic once that said homosexuals have the highest personal income of any demographic group. It is possible I didn't. I'll check it out later. Doc review results in way too much blog reading.

hinla

Just to clarify: economic studies show that gay couples generally have lower incomes. However, since gay couples are less likely to have children, the average gay couple ends up with greater *disposable* income.

hinla

p.s. I noticed a typing error in my earlier post. I meant to say... "The idea is that if I (a man) want to marry another man, [I CAN'T] because I am a man. Therefore, it is about my sex."

Grant Evans

Hinla:

I definately agree that rational basis review has become murky territory, more so I think in sexual orientation cases than in any other (because the level of scrutiny applied in Lawrence is never really made clear). I think I am a little old fashioned in my views on how the standard is applied, I suppose old habits die hard.

I think the sex discrimination argument you cite is strong, especially in light of Loving, since it essentially follows the same reasoning that prevailed there. I think that the success of the particular argument in Hawaii may be attributable to constitutional provisions peculiar to Hawaii, but I might be wrong. However, I don't particularly like the reasoning in that case (hopefully I don't make a mess of this, I really don't remember everything about it).

The case relied heavily on Loving, which I don't think applies as clearly as insinuated in that case.

First, Loving imposed criminal sanctions on those who married outside their race, whereas marriage licenses were simply denied to those seeking same-sex marriage. I think there is a difference, in terms of constitutional analysis, between prohibiting something criminally, and favoring something over something else.

Second, for equal protection purposes, similarly situated people must be treated similarly, and if a law is not discriminatory on its face, it will be found to be so only if its purpose and effect is to discriminate. In Loving, whites could marry any race, except black, and blacks could marry any race except white. The law essentially discriminated against whites and blacks only, not any other race, and as such, did not treat similarly situated people similarly, and its purpose and effect, I think, were clearly discriminatory.

The requirement that marriage be heterosexual, I think, treats similarly situated people similarly. All people, if they want to get married, must marry someone of the opposite sex. (I think this is a difficult part of the argument though, both sides just seem to spinning their tires in semantics).

Additionally, I do not think that the purpose or effect was clearly discriminatory. There is no real reason to deny interracial marriage, other than for discriminatory purposes, and certainly no reason to punish it criminally. However, there is a very real difference between men and women, and a legitimate reason to want to encourage men and women to marry over other alternative relationships. A committed relationship between opposite sexes has a very unique role to play in society, a role that no other relationship, no matter how loving and positive, can accomplish. Again, I am not saying those other relationship should be prohibited, only that it makes sense to me to encourage the singularly unique relationship. I suppose we could have a maximum age requirement and fertility test requirement for a marriage license as well, but that might not be worth the expense.

Third, sex is a quasi-suspect class, and as such, subject to intermediate scrutiny, unlike race, which was at issue in Loving, which is the ultimate example of a suspect classification subject to strict scrutiny. As such, I do not think the reasoning in Loving translates as well into the same-sex marriage context.

Also, while you are quite right that other courts have accepted the reasoning in Hawaii, other state courts have rejected it (I think it was called Baker v. something in Minnesota - but I might be wrong).

Also, I'm not sure that the idea of gender complementation is a mere stereotype. Many of the studies which discuss why married couples have greater success in rearing children than single parents cite the healthy benefits of having a man and a woman in the home. The fact is, men and women are different, and when they have a romantic, physically intimate relationship, that relationship is, at least potentially, different than any other, and when both act as parents, can have a beneficial impact on the children of that relationship.

Also, on an anecdotal note, in my experience, men and women, gay or not, are very different, and those differences can be wonderfully complementary, whether in marriage, friendship, or in professional or academic pursuits.

Louis:

I have no doubt I, as well as any other, has ingrained prejudices that are not rational. I think that it would be foolish to think that any of us look at the law independent of our upbringing and those ingrained prejudices. I think many who oppose gay marriage do so clouded by their prejudices against homosexuals. I think many who promote gay marriage do so clouded by their prejudices of religionists, or even heterosexuals. I hope that I have not been too clouded by my prejudices - I certainly try not to be.

But that notwithstanding, I feel very comfortable, with the evidence I have seen, that the state has a legitimate interest in promoting the very unique relationship between a man and woman above any other. I think it has nothing to do with the idea that the lure of tax breaks will convert homosexuals to heterosexual relationships, but that it will encourage those who may otherwise have children in a less committed relationship to consider the benefits of a more committed relationship, where children will know both biological parents, and parents will show a certain level of commitment to each other and to the child.

I think you are right about the monogomy argument - I get typing and brainstorming, and don't parse things out the way I should.

I would also like to know how you've divined the "spirit" of our constitution? From what I've divined, it doesn't concern itself with marriage at all - if anything, I think it would just as soon leave marriage to the churches and ignore it all together, let the states figure it out if they want to. From what many state courts have divined of their constitutions, marriage is for everbody. From others, only heterosexuals. And federal courts, well, who knows?

Also, I agree that allowing children to be adopted by a gay couple will allow more unwanted children to be raised in loving homes. I have said nothing about not allowing anyone to adopt or act as foster parents. I'm only talking about marriage.

Grant Evans

That last post was ridiculously long. I am embarrassed.

This is the last one, I promise.

Louis Kessler

Oh, you know, liberty, justice and equal protection. The spirit of the constitution should be to live and let live and treat people as equals in the eyes of the law.

To me, the answer is so obvious becasue I live in a place where there are many gay couples living in defaco marriages and many of them raise children in defacto families. Allowing them to get married so they have the rights that other couples have with respect to their families and children hurts no one and not allowing it treats similarly situated people differently based on their sexual orientation.

Again, marriage was never explicitly defined as betwen a man and a woman until the religious right made gay marriage an issue in the mid 1990s.

It might be different if so many gay people weren't already married as a functional matter, but becasue they are you are treating similarly situated people differently based on a suspect criteria and without a rational basis tied to a legitimate state interest.

The evidence just so overwhelming and the animus that motivates the other side is so blunt and obvious.
It isn't moderate people like you Grant who are the main proponents of banning gay marriage through a constitutional amendment.
They are motivated by the desire to establish their religious morality as the law of the land. That alone should give you pause.


The Law Fairy

"Also, on an anecdotal note, in my experience, men and women, gay or not, are very different, and those differences can be wonderfully complementary, whether in marriage, friendship, or in professional or academic pursuits."

Grant, I'm sorry to do this to you, but I really need to hear what these important differences are. I fail to see how enforced gender roles are at all helpful or beneficial to society and children. In fact, I think they are *highly* detrimental.

Bob

Louis,

You said: "Majority doesn't and shoudn't always rule, Bob, that is feature #1 of Con law."

Really? Tell me, how are laws made in this country? In Congress, right? How do they pass laws? They vote, right? Are laws passed by the majority, or the minority? Laws are reviewed by the Supreme Court, right? Does the Court uphold or overturn laws by majority, or minority? What the hell are talking about when you say that the #1 feature of Con Law is that the majority does not rule?

"You claim that this issue should not be a constutional one, yet you say Bowers was an invasion of privacy by the State."

You don't think that it wasn't? You don't see where the state is judging private acts between two consenting people?

"You say "majority rules, right or wrong, get it?"

Yes, I was being sarcastic. Get it?

"then you call the state of Georgia enforing the will of the majority in Bowers an "invasion of privacy""

Absolutley.

"and seem to be pleased it was overtunred and that privacy rights exist."

Absolutley.

"Either then you are for a majority within a state being able to meddle in private affairs,"

I am not.

" or you think it is a constitutional issue such that some majority supported laws violating that privacy are invalid under the Constitution."

I do.

"You can't have it both ways, especially so glaringly."

I maintain that I am consistent.

"You are a confused and poor thinker Bob."

You are confused and a poor reader.

"You're not too smart, I like that in a man"

My guess is Mae West, but I didn't look it up. It sounds like something she would say.

Kimball Corson

Hold it, Folks, I just got the word. The homophobics are right. According to a recently disclosed Pentagon policy document, denominated a Defense Department Instruction, homosexuality is a mental disorder to be grouped with mental retardation and other personality disorders. The document was found and verified by a researcher at the Univ. of Calif at Santa Barbara. well I guess that just about wraps up this thread. Darn, I thought I knew better. But our progressive military has spoken and that is that. So there. Isn't leadership wonderful?

Kimball Corson

It is truly interesting to see homophobic prejudice and humane reaction to it dressed up and paraded about in so many different suits of clothes, from the legal, to the sociological, to the ethical, to the anthropological, to the conjectural normative -- all to justify the right of population group A to mind the business population group B or to negate that right -where the true core issue is the visceral reaction to the “presumed practice” of anal intercourse or, more broadly, same sex sex on the part of Group A. If the “presumed practice” were instead, by wild hypothesis, say ‘literary correspondence,’ could we imagine this thread and its analyses without laughing at the absurdity of it? But absurd it is nonetheless, as participants struggle so to make one or another suit of clothes fit or not fit, as the case may be, to rationalize their positions, without anyone emotionally coming at all close to getting a grip on the core issue for others.

Kimball Corson

It is truly interesting to see homophobic prejudice and humane reaction to it dressed up and paraded about in so many different suits of clothes, from the legal, to the sociological, to the ethical, to the anthropological, to the conjectural normative -- all to justify the right of population group A to mind the business population group B or to negate that right – where the real core issue is the visceral reaction to the “presumed practice” of anal intercourse or, more broadly, same sex sex on the part of Group A. If the “presumed practice” were instead, by wild hypothesis, say ‘literary correspondence,’ could we imagine this thread and its analyses without laughing at the absurdity of it? But absurd it is nonetheless, no matter how hard and because participants struggle to make one or another suit of clothes fit or not fit, as the case may be, without emotionally coming to grips with the core issue for others.

Kimball Corson

Sorry for the double post. I am having browser/web problems this evening.

drew.catt

Wow, lots of comments here. I can't comment on all of them but I can respond to Bob's address to me.

Not, I never once said that a man sticking his penis in another man's anus is normal... I simply said it wasn;t disordered. Normalcy, as far as I can tell, implies that a majority practice the urge. I'm willing, for the sake of argument, to accept your claim that only a small percentage of the population practice anal sex (though I think we'd be all surprised by the number of people, straight and gay, that do it).

However, normalcy does not equal ordered. Something can be normal and still be highly disordered. Smoking for instance. The concept of order implies the proper use of something. Consequently a 'disordered' urge is something that interfers with the proper use of a thing. As I've already stated, anal sex does not intefer with the proper use of the anus. It is not a disordered urge,

But that isn't what you're arguing is it? You're saying, primarily, that its disordered because its morally reprehensible. In short, because the majority says so.

That's more than fine, as you said, what people find reprehensible is going to be up to them, and the majority of Americans probably do find the concept of gay marriage (if not gay sex) reprehensible. But I would disagree with you that the majority decides what is disordered or not... the majority decides what is normal... nothing more.

As a side note, I seems that, and I know, lots of heterosexuals care about homosexuality and the lifestyle. I'm not saying that you're the type of guy that would actively go and hunt down and harass a homosexual couple, but I know lots of people that would. In fact, I come from a country that is rabidly homophobic... so much so that if a gay man were to be beaten and killed in the street no one would care.

Lastly, you make the classic mistake that so many people make. You equate my support for gay marriage, and an acceptance of a homosexual lifestyle as similar acceptance for thins like having sex with sheep or with minors. Why? Have I given you any indication that I support those things. The conclusion doesn't necessarily follow from the logic (as I'm sure you would admit). I find it funny though that you manage to somehow equate a consensual activity with having sex with sheep (an animal not capable of consent) and children (humans legally not capable of consent). I don't find those actions acceptable (morally or legally), nor would I encourage anyone to engage in them.

The only thing I can imagine is that you took my comment ("but then, I'm not you") as some sort of insult. It was not. Reasonable people can obviously disagree, and we do.

Bob

As per my dictionary, the Webster's Ninth Collegiate

Disorder - not functioning in a normal or healthy way.

This was not the only definition, of course. My point here is that the word "normal" equates, for all practical purposes as used by myself on this subject (not smoking or whatever other analogy you wish to bring up), with "order," hence the word "disorder" equates with the word "abnormal."

I am saying it is disordered, not because it is morally reprehensible, but because it is abnormal.

And yes, the majority says find it morally reprehensible, but that is their right to believe what they like. I don't look at it as a moral issue, I see it as unnatural and gross. BTW, are there any other mammals or primates that engage in homosexual behavior? If not, then I would argue that it is unnatural.

Just to be clear, it is my personal opinion that homosexuality is reprehensible, but I defend their rights to do whatever they please. But I defend their choices not because I accept their behavior, but because I am a proponent for privacy rights. I would hope they keep it behind closed doors to the same degree that heterosexuals do (and yes, I realize that there are many public heterosexual exposures).

Kimball Corson

"Unnatural and gross" is getting there emotionally. But such acts are not so for homosexuals who exist in significant numbers. Why is it not so for them? What is it in their experience that defeats that view? We need some help here. Also, even if it is unnatural and gross to some of us, why should we be so personally torqued about what other consenting adults do when we are not compelled to do it? Why do we want to preclude them? What is at the base of this conflict, that roils us so emotionally?

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