Skip Narth, read Collins – UPDATED with NARTH statement

NARTH really wants to be on the same page with Francis Collins, the current Director of the National Institute of Health. Or at least they really want you to think they are. NARTH is now accusing Exgaywatch editor of somehow duping Francis Collins into criticizing a NARTH article by Dean Byrd which cited Collins. Yes, that is right, NARTH believes David (Skywalker) Roberts and the Jedi Knights at XGW used their mind tricks on the current director of the National Institute of Health, causing him to misrepresent a NARTH article.
You need to go read Roberts post at XGW to get the story.
About the current NARTH apologetic, there are a couple of observations I would like to offer.
Throughout the current article, NARTH confuses genetic with biological. Perhaps, “simple biological theory” means genetic to NARTH. But such a description obscures more than it clarifies. Note this passage:

In April, 2007, NARTH posted a peer-reviewed article which considered what science could and could not say about the genesis of homosexuality. The article basically focused on whether not homosexuality could be explained by a simple biological theory. The article cited a number of studies and scientists, including Dr. Francis S. Collins, and basically, concluded that evidence for a simple biological theory of homosexuality was lacking. The article made no mention of alterability of homosexuality.

The first problem here is that the NARTH article does not consider what “science could and could not say about the genesis of homosexuality.” It did not focus on “whether not homosexuality could be explained by a simple biological theory.” Nor did it conclude that “evidence for a simple biological theory of homosexuality was lacking.” What it did do was briefly discuss estimates of heritability based on several twin studies.
The problem with NARTH’s description is that biology is more than heritability. There are genetic factors which show up larger than expected by chance which is all Collins had to say about the matter. He did not opine on prenatal hormonal influences, such as prenatal testosterone. Collins did not opine on the reasons for maternal chromosomal skewing which occurs far more often in moms of gay men than in moms of straight men. Collins did not discuss brain scans demonstrating differential responses based on sexual orientation to male and female sweat. Nor did Collins say anything in his book about differences in brain symmetry between gays and straights. Thus, Collins did not review all of the biological evidence, nor did NARTH in its “peer-reviewed” article consider “what science could and could not say about the genesis of homosexuality” or demonstrate that a “simple biological theory was lacking.”
In the current article, NARTH labors to demonstrate that Collins agrees with them but doesn’t deal with the fact that he did not agree with them when he commented on the matter. If NARTH contacted Collins directly, it is not disclosed. Their problem is not with XGW but with Collins who said that the original article used his quotes which were “juxtaposed in a way that suggests a somewhat different conclusion that I intended. I would urge anyone who is concerned about the meaning to refer back to the original text.” (quote from Collins to Roberts).
That is good advice. Skip NARTH and go read the Language of God by Francis Collins.
UPDATE: In preparation for this post, I wrote David Pruden and asked if NARTH had made an attempt to contact Dr. Collins with their concerns. First of all, Mr. Pruden clarified that he did not write the article, but rather NARTH’s executive committee did.  Here is the response of NARTH’s executive committee to my inquiries:

If Dr. Collins had problems with a NARTH article, it was his responsibility to contact us.

So the problem here is Dr. Collins?
I also asked about NARTH’s peer review process. They wrote:

NARTH’s articles go through the Scientific Advisory Committee (SAC). Scientists, both affiliated and unaffiliated with NARTH, are peer-reviewers. As you are aware, peer reviews are blinded reviews and the identity of peer-reviewers remain anonymous; otherwise the peer review process would not work. The peer review process is similar to the peer review process at other places. Steve Simon’s involvement was noted at the end of the article which was posted in 2007.

So the reviewers are their advisors and some unnamed people who are not on their board. Most journals publish an editorial board member list so one can see the qualifications of those who vouch for the integrity of the content. The SAC is published but the outside reviewers are not.
I also asked if NARTH was going to publish the results of their Freedom of Information Request. They replied:

The FOI request resulted in a significant amount of information, only some of which was related to this article. Perhaps you might be willing to publish your communication with Dr. Collins to see how that compares to the information we have obtained.

Click the link in order to see what Dr. Collins wrote to David Roberts and me. I posted about the matter here in 2008 when PFOX’s Greg Quinlan misrepresented Collins’ views.

523 thoughts on “Skip Narth, read Collins – UPDATED with NARTH statement”

  1. Debbie,
    You’re muddying the waters with those quotes above:
    Collins did not say this – Byrd did:

    As Dr. Collins would agree, environment can influence gene expression, and free will determines the response to whatever predispositions might be present.

    In Fact most of Byrd’s article, beginning with the headline, is NARTH’s way of misrepresenting another person’s work so that it fits within their worldview and supports their agenda. They have a long and sad track record of doing this.

  2. There are stories to tell about professional retaliation for efforts taken in private also. Mary and Ann cannot know how those events also colored perceptions by those of us who sought a more conciliatory process in compliance with ethical demands and scripture.
    My dad used to say…”No good deed goes unpunished.” I have found that to be only rarely true, but certainly true in regards to efforts to refine and improve NARTH’s mission.
    It is extraordinarily sad.

  3. @ Jayhuck,
    I am referring to the confrontation of Christian leaders of wrongdoing…it is not taught, encouraged or coached for the laity.
    My example of Nathan and David in 2 Samuel 12 only works because David repents.
    Think of Martin Luther and his 95 theses…and the resultant schisms and wars that followed; culminating the the freedom of religion and freedom from religion.
    It is at the root of all of Warren Throckmorton’s transition…I believe.

  4. Nevertheless, this kind of conflict is never discussed in Christians circles, which is the culture we are coming from. You have to figure out how to do it from scratch.

    David,
    I’m a little unclear on what you are talking about here. Are you speaking about the efforts to change NARTH made by you and Warren?

  5. @David,

    FWIW, Carole, you missed the point by several orbits. But that shrill screed is certainly telling. You might want to find another blog that suits you better.

    Ah, the kind of thing David and Eddy were talking about.
    FWIW, there are several people who post here often and some much less often who offer intelligent discourse, ask interesting questions, can disagree w/out resorting to ad hominems, and a blog owner who offers a great, intriguing mix of topics.
    Could be there’s something wrong with your ears, but in any case, you can always choose to not read my posts if the tune isn’t to your liking.

  6. Warren is more virtuous and courageous than me by far.
    :).
    Jayhuck,
    Nevertheless, this kind of conflict is never discussed in Christians circles, which is the culture we are coming from. You have to figure out how to do it from scratch.
    In scripture there are only a few examples: Paul’s condemnation of Peter; Jesus’ reprimand of the disciples; David’s longstanding suffering waiting out King Saul.
    The strongest example of of Nathan’s rebuke of David for his murder of Bathsheba’s husband.
    These examples are never, never organized into a sermon for the laity…can you guess why?
    It is revolutionary.
    I disagree with Warren and David Roberts on this matter of demeaning and mocking sincere followers of Christ who engage in difficult truths at this site.

  7. It was a PRIVATE CORPORATION with a “PRIVATE TERMS OF SERVICE.”
    Heterosupremacists like Exodus are on the same line as White Supremacists, and Apple doesn’t allow THOSE apps.
    Denigrating an entire group of people as Exodus does, with its articles about how gay teens bring trouble upon themselves and you can’t be “whole” if you’re gay and you’re “broken” because of your inherent sexualiy is as unacceptable as when Stormfront.org says Jews control the media and are selfish and greedy because they’re Jewish.
    That’s why apple removed the app. NOT because it wanted to silence free speech. Because it violated their TOS.
    Exodus still has a website. Stormfront.org is still up and running. Neither have a problem getting their rhetoric out to the world.

  8. Yes, you continued with the language of “perferring” but it suddenly became very clear what you considered to be the parameters of such preferences when you contrasted the two “preferences”:
    you prefer your homosexuality.
    verses
    I liked falling in love, getting pregnant, being pregnant, having kids, grandkids.

    Oh, Timothy, what an amazing and non-stop judge you are! Isn’t it even remotely possible that Carole decided that she didn’t know enough about your homosexuality to elaborate? Or that if she did try to elaborate, you or someone else would immediately jump on some piece that she didn’t guess just right. So she said “your homosexuality” –which you should have a clear understanding of–and then gave more details about what she enjoyed about her own.
    David Roberts–
    It seems you missed my point. Go figure. I tried to focus on why we don’t just swallow whole what you feed us–or what Warren feeds us. So we ask questions trying to explore some of the backstory…only to have you (especially in the case of Ann) get downright rude. (‘sweetie’, ‘how passive-aggressive of you’, ‘haven’t you been paying attention’, etc, etc, ad nauseum.) And, to demonstrate that sometimes what you say is ‘tinged’ and isn’t exactly true, I brought in examples from the topic links. Your version: “I simply asked questions”….the reality version: your questions were preceded and followed by commentary and opinion. In that commentary you played the now infamous ‘gay victim’ trump card. This you added to your gushing praise for Collins, your self-proclaimed altruism and your personal summary on the evils of NARTH. If you can stand behind your statement “I simply asked questions”, it only indicates more why we shouldn’t just swallow whole what we read here or what we’re told to believe.
    And yes, we could take those other steps…we could chase down Collins but why is that necessary when you’re right here? Isn’t it logical that we start here…where the topic was brought to our attention and where one of the principles is actually in the conversation? You claim (and I tend to agree with you) that ‘this stuff has been hashed to death repeatedly’. Gotta ask yourself then what the fascination is that you and Warren have with dead horses? If it’s really been ‘hashed to death’, why isn’t it dead? Could it be that this blogsite aspires to be something more than a blogsite? More than discussion? Is the blogsite trying to be a vehicle of public pressure against NARTH. Gee, we’ve hashed it to death but NARTH won’t back off…let’s keep hashing and see if we can’t MAKE them.

  9. Anti-gay, Anti-abortion, Anti-american, Choice, Anti-tax, Anti-union, Anti-government. It is the propagandist who uses such phrases…please take your place next to Bahati and Sempa when you talk like that. Your goals are the same…to intimidate and marginalize rather than persuade and discuss.
    That has been the issue all along, Timothy. But you know that too, and I know that you are only using the blunt instrument on others that was first used on you.

    David, it is not my desire to use offensive of propagandist language.
    As I have said repeatedly – and say again now – I am amenable to switching to a word that you find to contain less baggage. I use “heterosexist” (and anti-gay and anti-abortion and anti-tax, etc.) because these words and terms have specific, easily understood, shared meaning. But if another word that you find less offensive is proffered, I can use it in replacement.
    However, I am not amenable to having ideas, thoughts, and concepts removed from consideration.
    And objecting to the words used to discuss an idea because we may fear or be uncomfortable with the idea is certainly not admirable. I very much hope that hasn’t happened.

  10. Teresa,
    Howdy. I’ve been away all day but came across this post of yours and was wondering if you would mind clarifying what you mean:

    There’s another aspect to this, which is the idea that I (we) deserve exactly what some other person or group has … I’m (we’re) entitled to have what you have. Where does justice leave off, and become simply an exercise in envy, or worse yet thuggery: personally and socially. And, what makes matters worse, I (we) want what you have without doing what you did to get it.

    This quote could easily apply to many things we talk about on this blog and I was just curious what you meant by it.
    Carole,
    For the record, I think you incorrectly read into statements made by others, something I’ve been guilty of as well so I don’t mean to come across as if I’m casting stones. By saying this I also don’t mean to condone the snarky comments that have been made. Like David said, sometimes its difficult not to make such comments on this thread. The blogosphere fails us at times when it comes to having truly meaningful conversations on such complex and emotionally-charged issues. I personally believe that if we were discussing this face to face we wouldn’t have most of the problems we do here.

  11. And if you read the articles in Exodus’ FAQ, you see they’re NOT just saying “oh, we believe gay people are great and all, WE just don’t practice gayness.” It’s MUCH more political and insidious than that.

  12. There’s another aspect to this, which is the idea that I (we) deserve exactly what some other person or group has … I’m (we’re) entitled to have what you have. Where does justice leave off, and become simply an exercise in envy, or worse yet thuggery: personally and socially. And, what makes matters worse, I (we) want what you have without doing what you did to get it.

    This quote could easily apply to many things we talk about on this blog and I was just curious what you meant by it.

    Jayhuck,
    Yes, this quote can apply to many things that we talk about on this blog; and, at the social level, even more. I don’t believe in ‘equality’ as a standard or implicit of/in anything; unless, we mean mediocrity in everything. So, here’s my take as a homosexual:
    Heterosexual is the normative. It’s what makes the world run at its elementary level. Nothing being equal, heterosexual trumps homosexual. Society has a vested interest in perpetuating itself; and, protecting that perpetuation.
    So, we’re left with the question is heterosexuality better than homosexuality? From a purely social view, in my opinion only, yes. However, there’s another question sitting right along side the first one, which is: are heterosexuals better than homosexuals? Person by person, the answer, again in my opinion, is no … simply because being human has intrinsic qualities of worth and dignity applicable to each one of us.
    Here’s where we mix up respect for each individual with an “I’m entitled to what you have” mentality. I’m a homosexual. I don’t think I’m entitled to be ‘married’ in the sense society understands it. I think as an individual, and not as a class, I should be able to keep a job if I’m performing adequately, and not be fired simply because I’m a homosexual.
    I think you see the difference. I know this Comment is not going to “warm the cockles” of too many hearts on this Blog; but, at the end of the day, these are simply my opinions. Mmm, maybe not just opinions, but beliefs born of much thought and experience.
    So, have at it.

  13. It is an interesting question.
    Jones and Yarhouse are the only ones I know of.
    And this is despite Christian Affiliated APA approved graduate schools at Fuller, George Fox, Rosemead, Pepperdine…and that is the west coast.

  14. A quote from David Roberts’ original article on the matter:

    I simply asked Dr. Collins questions and he answered after reading the original NARTH article himself.

    A paragraph of what David Roberts’ actually said to Dr. Collins in his first email:

    However, and this is the point I would like you to clarify–your words are being offered by such organizations to support their stand that those of us who have been attracted to the same sex romantically and physically since as long as we can remember, can reverse this attraction with a high degree of success (some even saying 100%) or that it can be prevented (heaping guilt on parents for whatever they must have done wrong). This is a conclusion which I do not think is supported by the facts–quite the contrary.

    I believe David honestly believes that he simply asked questions…but does anyone see a question in the paragraph I quoted? First we have the allegation that NARTH is using Collins quotes to support their stand on reversal of attraction with a high degree of success. NARTH did not speak at all to attraction reversal or success rates. Then the allegations of preventability and of heaping guilt on parents. NARTH did not speak to preventability in this article and I don’t recall a mention of parents at all.
    So, the truth is that David didn’t just simply ask questions. Like all of us, David has a tendency to minimize when it serves him and to exaggerate when it serves him. Because it’s a tendency for all of us, we come to a blogsite such as this and try to dig beyond the biases…NARTH’s, David’s, Warren’s,…heck, on a good day, even our own. 🙂 I honestly believe that that’s what Ann does. And I wince when the responses dodge the question and/or resort to personal attacks.
    In an earlier paragraph of David’s first email to Dr. Collins he made a claim that sounds as if he believes a homosexually-inclined individual has the right to live according to their personal beliefs and that he supports such individual rights. (Again, not keeping with ‘simply asked.) This certainly sounds as if he’s saying that if a person does believe it’s sin or ‘wrong for them’ then he supports them. Trouble is that I cannot find ANY evidence of this being true. I see the ongoing minimization of ex-gays and those who support them here; I witness the personal attacks. I see the efforts against NARTH and EXODUS…they seem more like attempts to point fingers, discredit and even ‘bring them down’ rather than efforts at correction.

  15. Teresa,

    From a purely social view, in my opinion only, yes.

    From a “purely” social view, or is this a social view that is colored by your religion? I’m curious

    Here’s where we mix up respect for each individual with an “I’m entitled to what you have” mentality. I’m a homosexual. I don’t think I’m entitled to be ‘married’ in the sense society understands it. I think as an individual, and not as a class, I should be able to keep a job if I’m performing adequately, and not be fired simply because I’m a homosexual.

    I see a great deal of this attitude in people who don’t support marriage equality for gay people. They view gay people as those who feel they are entitled to something, not that they are people who wish to be treated equally under the law. I think you could find similar attitudes directed at black people, or people of any other minority fighting for their place at the table.
    As a homosexual I don’t feel I am necessarily entitled to anything. However, heterosexuals did not have to pass some litmus test in order to be found worthy of marriage. Homosexuals in the same way do not have to prove themselves in any way to be found deserving of this type of equality.

    So, we’re left with the question is heterosexuality better than homosexuality?

    That really depends on what we mean by “better”. If the only definition of better involves procreation then I suppose you could answer the question with a yes. But there are several heterosexual couples out there who cannot conceive children. Do you feel they are less somehow than other heterosexuals. You logic seems to dictate that that is true, at least when it comes to furthering the species.

  16. Carole,
    Before leaving this Thread, I’d like to thank you for interjecting your thoughts on being a victim; or giving way to self-pity. Thanks, at least from me, for bringing us up-short on this. I know I can fall into this ‘character defect’, which is a pernicious, corrosive state of mind that leads to no good, personally and for groups that indulge in it.
    There’s another aspect to this, which is the idea that I (we) deserve exactly what some other person or group has … I’m (we’re) entitled to have what you have. Where does justice leave off, and become simply an exercise in envy, or worse yet thuggery: personally and socially. And, what makes matters worse, I (we) want what you have without doing what you did to get it.
    Carole, you brought up a very important point in all this. Much to ponder on, in all this. Debbie has brought this up before; but, at the time I wasn’t up to hearing it.
    Thank you for your insight and courage.

  17. I do think it is reasonable to ask, “Are Scientists intimidated by the GLBT advocacy groups?” And does this effect secular research on SSA?
    Spitzer and Bailey might comment on this. The reactions to their research was quite heated and personal.

  18. With all due respect, Eddy, have you spent the time I have tracking down where that article has been used, by whom and for what? What I said is absolutely, totally, 100% accurate. And even if NARTH had thought I somehow hoodwinked this incredibly smart man into making statements he didn’t want to, why didn’t they just contact him and explain themselves? Or more importantly, maybe they did and Collins still didn’t agree?
    This stuff has been hashed to death repeatedly. There is no honest way to make NARTH an injured party here. Or at least, not injured from without. And I’ve learned from observation that you have a great skill for Argument by Attrition.
    I spent hours and hours painstakingly writing various publications that repeated NARTH’s version of Dr. Collins, or repeated what had been further distorted by another party and then repeated again. One single publication, The Baptist Press of all things, made the correction. And then only because Bob Stith seemed to be a reasonable guy.
    I’m out of patience on this, and I don’t want to get mean in my frustration, so I’m not going to keep trying on this one. What you are saying, Eddy, is definitely the NARTH narrative on the issue, and you are free to hold to it. As I said, NARTH exists only because of that kind of blind faith. Meanwhile, there is a consequence to it all.

  19. So, NARTH as a scientific organization is responsible to report factually on the science of SSA.
    They generally report on the science of SSA for those with unwanted Same Sex Attractions…and they do that in a way that tends to talk about “cures” (this is Joe’s word used numerous times in my professional relationship with him…I urged him to stop doing so in 2005). They also recommend treatments which are experiential in nature, rather than scientific (i.e. evidence based practice).
    …and they do that in a way that tends to highlight the negative consequences of acting on one’s Same Sex attractions
    …and they tend to do that in a way that overlooks healthy functioning associated with identifying with one’s Same Sex Attractions.
    I can go on with the preferential style…
    It is perfectly acceptable for a Political Advocacy Group to do this…and God Knows, people with unwanted SSA deserve a capable and strong advocacy group. Anyone?
    As they persist with the Scientific Organization label but behave in a Political Advocacy role, they undermine their credibility…and the credibility of those who seek care from them for their Unwanted SSA.

  20. David Blakeslee
    I am going to say something that is due. For a very long time I’ve ignored this, but as it is becoming a matter of constancy, I have to say something.
    You will absolutely not want to hear this. You may deny it. Nevertheless, it is true.
    David, you personally engage in abuse towards me. Not my view, not my perspectives, but me. You do so in hurtful and demeaning ways. You do so when I’m here and evidently you do so when I have not even read the site in weeks.
    It has become a pattern. You justify it by imagining that I do as attack people personally as well. I don’t. And even if I did, that would still not take away from the fact that you are engaging in a pattern of abuse.
    I am now asking you to please stop.

  21. Juan,

    The Uganada thing is not that interesting to me.

    Think about how you feel about NARTH being criticized.
    Then imagine what it is like to be in a country that identifies as 90% Christian, like Uganda, but criminalizes homosexual behavior…and someone in the parliment is writing legislation to create a death sentence for it.
    If you are a Christian and act out on your sexual urges you could be criminally punished. But even worse, you could be identified by some vigilante group and beaten or killed “for God and Country.”
    It is pretty terrifying.

  22. Dean Byrd and NARTH “ganged up on?” Seriously Ann, they have a much larger bully pulpit here than Warren or me or most anyone who has reported on them. They can and do say whatever they want — frequently, through multiple channels. No one stopped them from saying anything.

    As I said, this was my original perception and then added the following –
    I wrongly felt as though fairness was being withheld from Dean Byrd and Francis Collins and narth because of a misunderstanding that, if given the proper channels, could be cleared up. I had no way of knowing the inside information that you already knew.

    And let me say once, without sarcasm, the obvious. Your comments about Blakeslee’s rather mundane explanation were obviously, at least to me, just an attempt to rub everyone’s nose in it (i.e. it’s not you for still not getting it, it’s everyone else for not being nice enough to explain it like he did).

    My comments, at the time and afterward, thanking David Blakeslee for clarifying what was not included in the original post or subsequent comments, were sincere and appreciated. If someone else, including you, would have imparted the same substantive information, I would have thanked you too. You chose to respond to me in a whole different way and manner.

    It was quite plain that you didn’t suddenly “see the light” after all these years of painstakingly well written rebuttal and explanation by Warren — not to mention endless subsequent spoon-feeding of the data in the comments.

    Another assumption that you want to believe so you make it true – just has nothing to do with the truth. In my comment to Dr. Throckmorton and David Blakeslee, I addressed my thoughts and knowledge about narth. Those are the truth.

    So with all due respect, Ann, check the log in your own eye first. I’ll apologize for not simply dropping out of the thread, but the rest really is on you. I honestly don’t think you want to get it

    Ok, what is the log I have in my eye to check? What is really up to me? What is it I am supposed to “get”?

    because you are too invested somehow in what NARTH does.

    Another assumption that you are making that you want to be true but, unfortunately, it is not. Sorry if this is truth is inconvenient to your beliefs.

  23. The Uganada thing is not that interesting to me.

    Quite frankly, you should be ashamed of yourself for that comment. These aren’t TV programs you are flipping through, they are people’s lives at stake, with multiple connections to places of power and faith.

    Also, I think there is a case to be made that Dr Francis menat what he wrote and was shamed by Wayne into back-pedaling.

    What does Wayne have to do with this? I’m not aware he was even in contact with Collins. And the only contact I’ve had with him has been posted multiple times and contains no “Jedi mind tricks” that one of the most brilliant geneticists in the world would fall helplessly in front of.
    The only thing to conclude here is that NARTH probably still exists at all because of people willing to ignore the preponderance of evidence against their credibility, and just like them for no good reason. Tell me how that makes sense?

  24. And, since you know nothing else about my life, you have assumed that I am “someone who has never had” experience x or experience y, experiences that might in some way parallel your own, even if they had nothing to do with sexuality. So much for assumptions. The pity party is for you alone or those who share your particular reason for seeking pity.

    Carole, I appreciate your point that your experiences as a woman making her way in male-dominated or male-centric culture are in some ways analogous to the experiences of a homosexual man making his way in a hetero-dominated, hetero-centric world.
    However, I would point out that Bowers v. Hardwick (in which the Supreme Court affirmed that fully consensual sex between two adult men could be criminalized, on no better grounds than that for as long as anyone could remember, most people found man-to-man sex distasteful) is only 25 years old.
    I was a teenager in high school when the SCOTUS said that it was okay for the state to arrest consenting adult homosexuals. And although I was still several years away from “coming out” to my family and close friends (a process that spanned the ages of 20-22), as a 15-year-old I was nonetheless outraged and stunned by Bowers. I was like, “How dare the Justices of the Supreme Court sully the American legal system with brazen logical fallacies, such as by arguing ad populum and ad antiquitatem!?!” (And yes, I knew terms like “ad populum” and “ad antiquitatem” at age 15, thanks to high-school Latin and lots of Isaac Asimov essays about logic.)
    If I’d been heterosexual but just as intellectually precocious, I still would’ve been outraged and stunned in a budding-teen-libertarian way, but on top of my sense that there was an irrational injustice behind the decision, I also felt personally stung, because I was quite aware of my own desires to engage in lots and lots of “oral sodomy” with Indiana Jones and Magnum P.I.!
    Anyway, Carole, my point is that it’s rather harsh and insensitive for you to call Timothy “pathetic”, because it was only 8 years ago that the SCOTUS (by a 6-3 decision, in Lawrence v. Texas) finally got around to affirming that — oops, wait a minute, on second thought, the State should not have the power to arrest people for consensual homosexuality.
    Thus, you should cut the man some slack.

  25. Carole,
    I’m still off-topic; so, back to Elizabeth Taylor. She seemed to typify in her life, a prescient look at where our ‘culture’ was headed. Watching her private life, which we were ‘invited’ to do, was like reading the tea leaves for our society, at large. Leave it to Beaver couldn’t survive the glamor, the chutzpah of an ‘edgy’ life.
    Yes, I agree, Carole, that off-stage, she:

    All in all, she seems to have been a person who, off the set, was seen as a loving, sensitive, giving person.

  26. Said from the point of view of someone who has never had the experience of ticking the “no I’m not f’ing married – you won’t let me” single box on every form he’s ever filled out.

    Didn’t take you long to claim the role of victim for yourself, Timothy. It’s supremely telling that since you know that I am a woman (and not a young one, at that) you have conveniently ignored that I belong to a group that has had the “kind of” experiences you refer to with your “no, I’m not f’ing married–you won’t…..”. And, since you know nothing else about my life, you have assumed that I am “someone who has never had” experience x or experience y, experiences that might in some way parallel your own, even if they had nothing to do with sexuality. So much for assumptions. The pity party is for you alone or those who share your particular reason for seeking pity.

    No, I’m not “stuck on” anything. But yes, heterosexism absolutely is all around us. Every day. Abundantly.
    And you have articulated how heterosexism is experienced very well. it is the constant underlying presumption that straight is intrinsically better. Always. For you, for your offspring, for your neighbors, for your grocery clerk, for your customers, for your second-cousin twice removed that you’ve never met.

    I wasn’t thinking of you at all when I wrote my comment, but your response sounds as if you really are the type of person I was suggesting when I said that there is a subgroup of gays who really are unable to accept that their trait is not preferred.
    Do you want me to prefer to be gay, Timothy? Will you only be happy if straights want to be gay? Yes , straights want to be straight. For themselves. For their offspring (which leads to more offspring). Other than that, most of us don’t give a damn. My cousin Vinny? Who cares? He’s not going to give me grandchildren nor great grandchildren. Ah, shoot me, Tim. I am a product of eons of evolution both biologically and psychogically (the two are, as you know, intertwined). But, you don’t like that evolution? You wish me not to prefer my heterosexuality? Well, shoot me, then, because I do prefer it, just as, I think, you prefer your homosexuality. I liked falling in love, getting pregnant, being pregnant, having kids, grandkids.
    When you say “intrinsically better” I guess that’s your way of accusing me and others like me of feeling superior? Right? Well, heterosexuality is certainly “better” for propagating the species. My telling you that I am glad I am heterosexual assures you that I feel superior to you, right? My God, you really do want to be a victim. You really do want to see yourself as put upon by the fates. “Oh, world, why me? Why me? I am a sufferer!”
    That’s just pathetic.
    It ain’t gonna happen–wanting us to want to be gay ain’t gonna happen. I never thought a guy like you who knows some science would be rolling around in this sticky tarpit of self- pity.
    Okay, so shoot me and those of my ilk: sexuality has allowed my genes to be passed on to the next generation. And, my reproductive drive coupled with my sexual orientation made conceiving those little gifts to the next generation a lot of fun–it wasn’t work, wasn’t distasteful, wasn’t misery. And my family life has been a joy. Does that tick you off somehow? That heterosexuality actually worked for me? For others? That’s it’s the way of the world? The majority? That you aren’t part of that majority? What you want on an emotional level is to wish away the biology that drives the rest of us. Can’t happen.
    Want to call me a heterosexist for preferring to be what I am and not caring that you are what you are? Go ahead. It’s just a word and you like name-calling.
    You want what biology can’t deliver–or you want straight to lie to you.

  27. FWIW, there are several people who post here often and some much less often who offer intelligent discourse, ask interesting questions, can disagree w/out resorting to ad hominems, and a blog owner who offers a great, intriguing mix of topics.

    The articles are good, the discourse not so much anymore. You should try some ad hominems, they are great with milk and sugar for breakfast — yummy! I buy them at a little Christian store down the street. But then I see you have already developed a taste for them.

  28. And now it has degraded into a 6th grade level of “conversation.” Keep in mind it only takes one side in such a situation to break the feed-back loop and prevent it from escalating (or rather degrading further).

  29. My drag name would be Minerva Huntington. ( First pet; street I grew up on) or Rusty Huntingdon if a male porn star. (First dog; street I grew up on)

    I especially like the “name of hometown” version, ’cause I was born in the capital of Thailand (really!), and what better name could there be for a gay male porn star than…
    Krung Thep Mahanakhon Amon Rattanakosin Mahinthara Yuthaya Mahadilok Phop Noppharat Ratchathani Burirom Udomratchaniwet Mahasathan Amon Phiman Awatan Sathit Sakkathattiya Witsanukam Prasit?
    😉
    P.S. For those who don’t feel like reading the wiki article, this is not one of those “Burma becoming Myanmar” post-colonial things. “Bangkok” and “Krung Thep” are both authentic Thai names for the city that go back centuries, but strictly speaking “Bangkok” was always a neighborhood / district / mini-city within the larger city of Krung Thep.

  30. Sorry to disappoint you–your repeated meme of “Christians are the big bad boys against us” doesn’t apply. The secular do visit Warren’s blog, in case you didn’t know.

    Oh yeah, that’s my meme alright. Christians are the root of all evil, say it all the time. I’ve been to that secular store, but their ad hominems are dry and tasteless, the others are heavenly 😉
    Ken – I would have one with 8th grade, but 6th will work.

  31. I don’t think you want to be perceived as someone who is emotionally undisciplined and/or intentionally tries to hurt others. Please don’t do it anymore.

    Why gosh no, honeybunch. And if I had any idea what you’all were talking about, I might even consider spending a few minutes over here bashing my head against the proverbial brick wall.
    But glad to see you are still thinking of me 🙂

  32. And now it has degraded into a 6th grade level of “conversation.”

    I’m trying my best to elevate the conversation, ken!
    Now, tell me — if you could be reincarnated, would you choose:
    a. Klingon (Q’omho sapiens aggressivus)
    b. bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus)
    c. human (Homo sapiens)
    d. gay male human (Homo sapiens arsenokoiticus)
    e. none of the above?

  33. Teresa, that’s a little hard to do on a blog about politics, religion and sex! With this bunch, sometimes you have to laugh to keep from crying. It wasn’t always that way.

  34. David,
    Sorry to disappoint you–your repeated meme of “Christians are the big bad boys against us” doesn’t apply. The secular do visit Warren’s blog, in case you didn’t know.

  35. LIttle did I know that a poster would come along who really does feel that unless and until heteros somehow don’t prefer heterosexuality, there can be no…justice?

    Speaking of using someone’s words in a way they did not intend. NARTH could use someone like you, carole. Your reaction does kinda prove a point, however.

  36. Oh Ann, still at it and my comment was so far back. Your passive-aggressiveness is so cute! I’m just glad to know you still care.

    I do. Speaking of passive-aggressiveness, it is interesting to note that you did not answer my initial simple question directed to you, and yet you chose to respond, passive-aggressively to me via a comment I made to another person. I am coming to believe that you do not take challenges very well, nor like to be called out for your inaccuracies. By the way, none of this has to do with being gay or straight, or equal rights, or anything else – just the method you are choosing to interact with another. It is very unbecoming and others take notice. I don’t think you want to be perceived as someone who is emotionally undisciplined and/or intentionally tries to hurt others. Please don’t do it anymore.

  37. I remember when I was young (pre-Civil War), the old folks were adamant about not talking about politics, religion, or sex. The grey-hairs had much wisdom, as witness how this thread has gone a wee-bit wild.
    Could we change the subject? I felt quite sad yesterday when I heard that Elizabeth Taylor had passed away. I have no reason why, particularly. I never saw many of her movies; and, the few I saw, I didn’t think she was a great actress. Somehow, I think it was the passing of an era … the passing of a person larger than life; someone of my time. Perhaps, it’s less about the person; and, more about mourning the passing of years.
    OK, back to the regularly scheduled Terminator Series.

  38. This is a much better way to say it than
    They are essentially “heterosexual supremacists” in they eyes of society.
    Thank you for being fair and measuring your words so that they are accurate.

    Oh Ann, still at it and my comment was so far back. Your passive-aggressiveness is so cute! I’m just glad to know you still care.
    Carry on.

  39. FWIW, Carole, you missed the point by several orbits. But that shrill screed is certainly telling. You might want to find another blog that suits you better.

  40. Just my experience with the two, earlier with Timothy, lately with David R.
    Marriage as an institution is broken and somewhat corrupted. I have always argued that this first happened with heterosexuals.
    Trying to repair it, to have it return to a more conservative, well defined institution preceded the whole gay marriage debate.
    It has very little to do with heterosexism, or paternalism or any number of other “isms.”

    Well, it need not have anything to do with heterosexism. The discussion could start from a place of inclusion and look at the real meaning of marriage and how it interacts with the state. It could have established principles related to objecting priorities and determine how these impact and are impacted by religion or the state or the culture.
    It might even come to the conclusion that marriage ought only be granted to white Christian heterosexual couples in which the man holds title to all property. And that could be the conclusion based on reason and logic and a desire to do what is best for society. And it need not be a racist, heterosexist, paternalist decision.
    However, if your reason and logic and desire to do what is best doesn’t even consider gay people, then yes it is heterosexist. By definition.
    I think the problem, David, is that you very much want to hold on to values of heterosexual superiority but that you very much don’t like to have those values pointed out to you.
    Why don’t you just proudly say, “Yes, I’m a heterosexist. I presume that straight people should always be deferred to in every situation and I care nothing about how I impact the lives of gay people.” Because the alternative – holding to views but not liking what they say about you or their consequences to others – has got to be disconcerting.
    And you can hardly expect gay people to keep it secret from you when you are doing things or taking positions that make their daily living more difficult. If your feelings are hurt by being confronted with how you disadvantage others, it can hardly be the fault of those saying, “excuse me, can I be treated the way that you are treated for a while?”

    Timothy and David R see marriage rights for gays and lesbians through a different window than many on the conservative side do. They resort to a polarizing and inflammatory name-calling technique as a way to control and truncate the debate.

    Well, no. I’m not, for example, accusing you of resorting to to a polarizing and inflammatory name-calling technique as a way to control and truncate the debate. That would be impolite of me.
    I am, however, giving definition and example to a word and, more importantly, the concept behind it.
    I’m not at all trying to “truncate debate.” I am, however, trying to make you aware of something that you are very resistant to hearing: that decision which impact the live of gay people – especially those which impact gay people FAR MORE than heterosexual people – cannot be made without considering the people you impact.
    Listen to the debates, David. Those in favor of giving gay people the same treatment as heterosexuals talk in terms of the people they are impacting. Those who are not talk about other things: their kids, their church, their faith, their culture. They believe that the lives and the experiences of gay people simply aren’t as important as their own.
    Yes there are a few who rant about the “militant homosexual activists who are after our children.” The ones who hatefully rant every bogus claim about gay people that they can find on the web. Those folks are homophobes.
    But they are pretty few. And I’m not talking about them. I’m talking about the ones who oppose equality without even really considering who ends up suffering for their decision.
    And the word for believing that gay people don’t quite matter as much as real people, are inherently inferior, love all God’s children but wouldn’t want to be one of ‘them’, is heterosexism.

    They have a good friend in Wayne Besen, who models for them how to talk in this debate.

    LOL
    Considering that Wayne once referred to me as a “typing monkey” for disagreeing with one of his positions, I hardly think that he models for me how to talk.
    I appreciate that Wayne dedicates tremendous time toward the goal of gay equality. I do. But he and I seldom see eye to eye on tactics, language, or our approach to either the ex-gay movement or people of faith.
    It isn’t actually true that all gay people are interchangeable.

  41. Carol,

    When you say “intrinsically better” I guess that’s your way of accusing me and others like me of feeling superior? Right? Well, heterosexuality is certainly “better” for propagating the species. My telling you that I am glad I am heterosexual assures you that I feel superior to you, right? My God, you really do want to be a victim. You really do want to see yourself as put upon by the fates. “Oh, world, why me? Why me? I am a sufferer!”
    That’s just pathetic.

    Honestly, I don’t think that’s what Timothy was saying. I’ll let him jump in and address the issue, but I see what he is saying differently. This is an example of why I think trying to discuss things this in-depth, emotional and complex on a blog is so problematic.

  42. Timothy–
    Sometimes it isn’t all about you. I was reading this thread and was responding to Jayhuck’s comment re the ‘dumb breeders’. Your comments came in while I was composing mine.
    Don’t have the interest in pursuing anything further with you. I find your attitude extremely distasteful and abrasive. (And no, not referring to your comments to me but rather your exercising judgement on both David B. and Throbert.) There had been some semblance of actual conversation here and the tone changed dramatically from measured give and take to total bashing when you entered the scene. I’m simply not interested.

  43. Eddy,
    First – shame on you for the mental image of a porn starring someone named Minerva Huntington…. I now need to go scrub my eyes 😉
    But as for this, what thread are you reading?:

    I just brought up the possibility of homosexism and, of course, that notion was refuted (not well, BTW, but refuted nonetheless)

    I just said that it exists.

    Bullying–let’s lay ALL of that on the straights (and religious conservatives)…Bias and Bigotry–if the gays have it, it’s only because the straights created it. Intolerance–again the domain of the conservatives; ‘gay intolerance’ is merely a natural response. Judgementalism and Prejudice–that’s the straights…we gays are simply telling it like it is.

    Huh? No one said anything even remotely like that.

    In future conversations, I hope we can recognize that ‘gays are just like straights’ is just a line…that there are real differences and it’s okay to explore them–even the differences that might be perceived as negative.

    In future conversations, I hope we don’t rant about what we imagine others are saying. It makes it more “conversation” and less “mindless hateful rambing”.

    Difference DOES NOT necessarily mean superiority or inferiority…just difference.

    True. And there are differences, if not as a matter of attribute then at least as a matter of trend or social direction.
    And if you can discuss them without being defensive or turning it into “yeah, but gays are worse” then sure, let’s discuss them. I’m not sure this is the right thread for that, but it’s a conversation that can be had.
    If, however, it turns into a Laurie-Higgins-worthy litany of every negative stereotype or personal grievance, real or imagined, then I don’t really want to play that game.

  44. Eddy,

    In future conversations, I hope we can recognize that ‘gays are just like straights’ is just a line…that there are real differences and it’s okay to explore them–even the differences that might be perceived as negative. Difference DOES NOT necessarily mean superiority or inferiority…just difference.

    If I haven’t said this enough in past threads I will say it again. There have been and always will be differences between individuals, groups etc. Differences do exist between minority groups whether they be AFrican American, Asian or Gay. I agree that differences don’t have to mean that one group feels superior or inferior.
    There are some gay people like some straight people, there are some who are not. I suppose it could be said there are some straight people who are more like gay people than others – whatever. I care more about equality under the law than I do about some idea that all people are like everyone else – that’s nonsense.

    Bullying–let’s lay ALL of that on the straights (and religious conservatives)…Bias and Bigotry–if the gays have it, it’s only because the straights created it. Intolerance–again the domain of the conservatives; ‘gay intolerance’ is merely a natural response. Judgementalism and Prejudice–that’s the straights…we gays are simply telling it like it is.

    I think gay people can be just as biased and intolerant as anyone else, however, I don’t know of any gay groups going around actively working to make sure straight people can’t marry – etc, etc… There are people in all minority groups who are intolerant, but I don’t think you can point to all of them and say that the intolerance most have had to fight against all their life doesn’t impact how they might speak against the majority which has maligned them.

  45. I find it interesting that the usual theme here is that ‘gays are just like straights’ except for the gender of who we’re attracted to EXCEPT when it comes to anything negative. I just brought up the possibility of homosexism and, of course, that notion was refuted (not well, BTW, but refuted nonetheless) Bullying–let’s lay ALL of that on the straights (and religious conservatives)…Bias and Bigotry–if the gays have it, it’s only because the straights created it. Intolerance–again the domain of the conservatives; ‘gay intolerance’ is merely a natural response. Judgementalism and Prejudice–that’s the straights…we gays are simply telling it like it is.
    In future conversations, I hope we can recognize that ‘gays are just like straights’ is just a line…that there are real differences and it’s okay to explore them–even the differences that might be perceived as negative. Difference DOES NOT necessarily mean superiority or inferiority…just difference.
    –Throbert–
    My drag name would be Minerva Huntington. ( First pet; street I grew up on) or Rusty Huntingdon if a male porn star. (First dog; street I grew up on)
    Dave Roberts and others–
    I agree…not fond of Apple gadgetry or it’s incompatibility. Not thrilled with MS. Even though I have a basic Windows OS, I use “Open Office” for documents, spreadsheets, etc. LOL. And somehow I wind up with toolbars offering MSN search, Norton search, Verizon search….but NO SEARCH ENGINE compares to Google!
    This weekend when I had car troubles that no one could quite get to the bottom of, I reduced the symptoms to a google search “corolla brake lights blow fuses” and had both the diagnosis and the cure in seconds!!!!! Then when my brother and I couldn’t get access to the brake lights after a half hour of doing everything we were supposed to, I googled “Corolla brake light access” and laughed when the very first answer went exactly to the particular frustration my brother and I were having, assured us that we had taken the right steps, cautioned against the next steps we were considering and said ‘if you’ve undone those three bolts, put down your tools. Just wrestle with the thing until it breaks free.’ (We had tried that route too but thought that we must be missing something since it still wasn’t budging.) Go Go Google!!!!

  46. If you are stuck on equating “inferior” with “not preferred” and “superior” with “preferred” then you will see “heterosexists” and “heterosexism” all around you and that will always agitate you for you will feel marginalized, victimized and… inferior.

    I don’t totally disagree with this, but I would phrase it thusly:
    If you are stuck on getting more and larger donations from riled-up gay people, you will encourage them to see heterosexism as an omnipresent threat that is forever ready to marginalize and victimize gay people.
    Similarly, if you are stuck on getting more and larger donations from riled-up Christian conservatives, you will encourage them to see gay-rights activism as an omnipresent threat that is forever ready to marginalize and victimize Christian conservatives.
    (Not that there’s anything inherently wrong with fundraising and soliciting voluntary donations — but the issue of Job Security For Activists and Fund-Solicitors can take on a life of its own and corrupt the entire discussion.)

  47. Oooooh, I guess I was getting uppity.

    [Checking “uppity” off the Gay-Tropes Bingo card]
    Now tell us how gay relationships are only 3/5 as good as straight ones… I’m only two squares away from a full picture frame!!

  48. They have a good friend in Wayne Besen, who models for them how to talk in this debate.

    The thing is – few people really care who is gay, who is not, and anyone in between, however, many will care and remember how they were treated. How we talk to and treat others is always a choice and as much as I can tell it has nothing to do with being gay or straight – it has to do with character, and this reveals whether what is said holds any value or substance.

  49. “Heterosexism is an unscientific system of attitudes, bias, and discrimination in which the heterosexual sexual orientation, heterosexuality, is viewed and treated as being superior to the homosexual sexual orientation, homosexuality.[1] Heterosexism deems homosexuals the inferiors of heterosexuals, which results in discrimination against homosexuals, commonly referred to as gays or gay people. ”
    In my neck of the woods I don’t know people who go around thinking themselves superior to homosexuals or thinking of homosexuals as inferior. I realize, however, there are those who do (the young, in particular) so in this regard, the def. makes some sense.
    However, there is a real downside, a cost to the use of the word. I think many who use the term “heterosexist” or “heterosexism” are concluding (or are pretending to conclude) that because the trait of homosexuality is not a preferred trait for straights (straights don’t wake up in the morning saying, “I wish I were gay or lesbian”; they don’t wish for gay or lesbian kids when they conceive; they don’t strive to convert their straight kids to gay or lesbian; they don’t watch gay actors or actresses or musicians, and say to themselves, “I want to be like them in their field of endeavor and also be gay or lesbian like them” …) that straights must think themselves superior to gays.
    It is true, of course, that not minding a trait in others is not saying we prefer the trait for ourselves. We value some traits over others: most would rather be tall than short -although most would like neither extreme; most would rather be smart than dull, although average isn’t the end of the world; most would rather be attractive than plain; most would rather be assertive than shy; most would rather be graceful rather than awkward.) Given opposites, most of us can easily claim our preference, yet we realize that for most traits, we fall somewhere in the middle, far from the extremes.
    However, for most, sexuality falls to the extremes. We are attracted to, we fall in love with either someone of our own gender or someone of the opposite gender. So, let me look at those extremes in terms of preference.
    We straights value our heterosexuality as a trait (when actually forced to think about it) and given a choice, would surely claim it as our strong preference. We do indeed see it as preferred over its “opposite”–homosexuality.
    I am sure you understand that. I feel I can safely conclude that many (maybe most?) gays who comment here value their homosexuality and given a choice, would claim it as preferred over its opposite- -heterosexuality. I know there are some who are gay who would prefer not to be. It is not a preference as a trait for themselves.
    So, let’s look at traits in this manner, whether we are talking about height, color of eyes or hair, or race, or facets of personality such as extroversion or introversion: we view traits as either neutral (perhaps something like hair color); as preferred (intelligence ); as not preferred (violent).
    Viewed in this manner, to the overwhelming majority of straights of all political ideologies, homosexuality is not a preferred trait when it comes to their own sexuality or that of their offspring. If you are stuck on equating “inferior” with “not preferred” and “superior” with “preferred” then you will see “heterosexists” and “heterosexism” all around you and that will always agitate you for you will feel marginalized, victimized and… inferior. If, however, being perpetually agitated, feeling marginalized and victimized and inferior is actually the kind of state you enjoy, you will be happy.
    Although I don’t know about anyone posting here, I suspect there really are people who want straights to view homosexuality as a neutral or a preferred trait, and they are deep-down angry at the world because they know they are asking for the impossible, and so they play word games, settling for “heterosexists feel superior.”
    So, if a person sees the trait as something they don’t prefer or don’t view as neutral for themselves (or for their offspring) it seems we heterosexuals are doomed to being called “heterosexists” by a subgroup of a subgroup.
    It’ll accomplish nothing. In fact, it will be counter-productive.
    The word “racist” has lost its meaning because it has been applied so promiscuously. Its misuse has turned counterproductive.

  50. David R –

    Nope, I don’t care for MS stuff either, I use Linux 🙂 And when the Android tablets get a little more polished, I may get one of them.

    I knew it. I could almost tell from your tone that you were a Linux user 🙂

  51. Its not applied broadly to all of heterosexual culture, only those who believe that heterosexuals are superior in whatever way to homosexuals.

    Jayhuck,
    This is a much better way to say it than

    They are essentially “heterosexual supremacists” in they eyes of society.

    Thank you for being fair and measuring your words so that they are accurate.

  52. It is the racism meme applied to heterosexual culture.
    These characterizations will only get worse…
    Kincaid and Roberts have been heading this direction for several years and they have arrived.

    I find it fascinating that I was referenced in the comments of a thread that I hadn’t even read. I guess my opinions have power even without being stated.
    😉
    If you are suggesting that I consider racism and heterosexism to be related in that both are based in presumptions of “how people are” resulting in the invisibility of those who differ, then yes I do. I am not heading down any direction on this, however, as I pretty much have always seen anti-gay advocacy as related to racism, sexism, or any other mindview that is based on social rejection of a group.
    Just as you didn’t see black people on Television before the 70’s, you didn’t see gay people on network TV before Will and Grace. “The audience” just couldn’t relate, you know.
    And I am not making this up: up until a decade or so ago, when you could get a major company to advertise in a gay-audience publication, they would just run whatever ad they were running in a “regular” publication. And more often than not it would have an overtly heterosexual theme. I should drink your vodka so that I’ll be more attractive to women? Really?
    No, it’s not a new observation. And it’s actually much much better than it used to be. Both for racial minorities and for gay folk.
    But I have for a while, however, been growing in my concern about a cultural phenomenon, for which I don’t yet have an “ist” term. It is the consistent banishment of moderate people of faith from television, movies, or other cultural visibility.
    The good guys on TV don’t go to church. And if there is anyone who is Christian, they are a raging loon trying to control everyone around them all to compensate for some secret personal horror.
    And it isn’t limited to scripted TV. The “Christain view” on some issue on the news isn’t given by Rev. Friendly from the Presbyterian Church explaining theology but by Pastor Nutjob from Community Church of Self-Righteousness there to rant about the sinners.
    Even Christian television is skewed towards miracle handkerchiefs, bizarrely made-up women, and assertions that God sent the latest natural disaster to punish someone (usually The Gays) for something or other.
    This results in a distorted picture of Christians as loons. And it results in a distorted response. Because raging nut-jobs are all people see, the only responses they hear are directed towards those nutjobs.
    And when you say, “hey, I’m not a loon” there’s always the response of, “oh, I don’t mean you. I mean those other kinda Christians.” Oh, no one ever puts down moderate, decent, neighbor-loving, Christians. They just pretend like they don’t exist.
    Maybe that helps you understand what we mean by “heterosexist.” It isn’t the gay haters (though they can be part) but the presumption that gay folk simply aren’t quite real people. They are an inferior group. They just don’t matter. Or exist. At least not in our community. Or our church. Or buying our products. Or voting in our district.
    Moderate (or, just not wacky) Christians take note. If you aren’t careful, you’re next.

  53. Carol,

    We straights value our heterosexuality as a trait (when actually forced to think about it) and given a choice, would surely claim it as our strong preference. We do indeed see it as preferred over its “opposite”–homosexuality.
    I am sure you understand that. I feel I can safely conclude that many (maybe most?) gays who comment here value their homosexuality and given a choice, would claim it as preferred over its opposite- -heterosexuality. I know there are some who are gay who would prefer not to be. It is not a preference as a trait for themselves.

    I think you are absolutely correct here. I wanted to take the opportunity to apologize for being off-putting during one of our conversations on another thread. I always appreciate what you write because it is well-written and thoughtful.
    I do not think, however, that when academics talk about heterosexism they are talking about an individual preferring their orientation for themselves over and above other types of orientations, although I would think that idea would fall under some banner of heterosexism. I usually hear the term discussed in regards to institutions or groups favoring heterosexuality over homosexuality when it comes to civil rights – where heterosexuality is viewed as the ideal to the detriment of gay people and institutions.
    Here is another defintion:

    Heterosexism is a form of discrimination that favors heterosexuals over lesbians, gay men, and bisexuals.
    Most legal systems are profoundly heterosexist, offering visitation rights, tax benefits, and other protections to opposite-sex couples that are not available to same-sex couples. Heterosexism is also a reality in the corporate world, where those who are oriented towards partners of the same sex are often denied promotions on the basis of their sexual orientation, or fired outright when their sexual orientation is discovered.
    Heterosexism is distinct from homophobia, though homophobia is in all likelihood the driving force behind heterosexism.

  54. David R –

    That’s part of were my little smirk towards Randy came from. Maybe if he had enough faith, he could live without those things 😉

    Hey – I’m a recent PC to Apple convert. Don’t be dissing my choice of OS and products 😉

  55. Throbert,

    Not to discourage people from using wikipedia, but you should read and cite it with discernment, and be aware that any given article on wikipedia is only as “reliable” as (a) its supporting bibliography, and (b) the volunteer writers and editors who chose to work on it.

    I would go one step further and suggest that people read and cite anything with discernment that they find online, whether it be from a so-called reputable source or not. 🙂

  56. This is true:

    Not to discourage people from using wikipedia, but you should read and cite it with discernment, and be aware that any given article on wikipedia is only as “reliable” as (a) its supporting bibliography, and (b) the volunteer writers and editors who chose to work on it.

  57. David Roberts-
    Thanks. I understand what you’re saying–even from my ‘hippie-radical’ “if only we could all just speak freely and let the listeners sort out what works for them” mentality.
    And perhaps Randy ought to be the one to spearhead a boycott of the Apple gadgets instead of supporting them with his dollars.
    I’ve never been a big fan of boycotts but I think there’s some dynamic going on that is beginning to resurrect those old notions of petitions and boycotts.

  58. I don’t want to get into a protracted discussion on the term heterosexism. All of our labels for things fall short, or are imperfect, to some degree or another. Some people will find them useful, others will find them offensive, and some will argue they have become meaningless due to their overuse. But to label all sorts of things seems to be part of our nature, and I don’t think that is necessarily an unhelpful thing to do. The attitude expressed by the term heterosexism exists. If we choose to try and define it so we can study and discuss that particular attitude I don’t think that’s a bad thing

  59. I do understand. It just seems to me that if Francis Collins and Dr. Throckmorton are taking issue with a perception that Dean Byrd is willfully distorting what Francis Collins wrote to advance narth, that he be given the chance to clarify his intreptation of what was written.

    I’m not quite sure that you do understand.
    Dr. Collins isn’t “taking issue” with anything other than that his character and his reputation are being threatened by the public distortion of his views and his work. Having clarified (three times) that NARTH’s characterization of his views and work is inaccurate, he has moved on. So let’s revise:

    It just seems to me that if Francis Collins and Dr. Throckmorton are is taking issue with a perception that Dean Byrd is willfully distorting what Francis Collins wrote to advance narth, that he be given the chance to clarify his intreptation of what was written.

    But Dr. Throckmorton is not taking issue with the perception that Dean Byrd’s distorted. Actually Dr. Throckmorton shares that perception.
    However, one may have various perceptions until a matter has become clear. Once clarified, it is no longer a matter of perception. Let’s revise:

    It just seems to me that if Francis Collins and Dr. Throckmorton are is taking issue with a perception that Dean Byrd is willfully distorting what Francis Collins wrote to advance narth, that he be given the chance to clarify his intreptation of what was written.

    I’m sure that Dr. Throckmorton is, indeed, concerned about whether Byrd’s distortion is/was intentional. But Byrd is not really the focal point of his criticism.
    The specific authorship being assigned to Byrd is less important than that this claim by NARTH has been repeated by NARTH or other associates twice after Collins has refuted it (once by NARTH board members under the guise of a subcommittee of ACPeds and again by a Mormon organization started by Byrd.) Indeed, it was as a NARTH leader that Byrd wrote, and it is NARTH’s board that is attacking Roberts, not Byrd.
    You will note that Dr. Throckmorton is not laser-focused on Byrd. His criticism is with NARTH.
    (And to be more correct, it is NARTH’s beliefs that NARTH was advancing rather than the organization itself)
    So, another revision:

    It just seems to me that if Francis Collins and Dr. Throckmorton are is taking issue with a perception that Dean Byrd NARTH is willfully distorting what Francis Collins wrote to advance narth their positions, that he Byrd and/or NARTHbe given the chance to clarify his intreptation of what was written.

    The paragraph, as written, implies that Byrd had never been given a chance to clarify. Additionally, it implies that Throckmorton’s objection is to Byrd’s (or NARTH’s) interpretation of what was written. Both are false.
    Byrd and NARTH have been specifically invited to clarity. By more than one person and on more than one occasion. They chose not to.
    Also, NARTH is free to believe what it will about Collins’ work. They are free to interpret anything they like from it. What is unethical and immoral is to imply that their interpretation is shared by Collins or that they are accurately representing his opinion or views.
    While I regularly interpret research and polls and findings and writings, I do not blatantly imply that the researcher, pollster, analyst, and author share my interpretation – especially after they have publicly refuted my claim.
    So, our final revision:

    It just seems to me that if Francis Collins and Dr. Throckmorton are is taking issue with a perception that Dean Byrd NARTH is willfully distorting what Francis Collins wrote to advance narth their positions, that he Byrd and/or NARTH be given the another chance to clarify his intreptation their distortion and misrepresentation of what was written.

    Or:

    It just seems to me that if Dr. Throckmorton is taking issue that NARTH is willfully distorting what Francis Collins wrote to advance their positions that Byrd and/or NARTH be given another chance to clarify their distortion and misrepresentation of what was written.

    And you are certainly entitled to that view.
    After NARTH having accused Roberts of being a liar and suggested that Collins is a gullible fool, I am less generous in the doling out of chances.

  60. Teresa,

    Here’s the nub of the issue. Heterosexuals shouldn’t have to have a litmus test to marry. It’s how society operates. Families are the basic building block of society. Heterosexuals get to marry; just because of every factor they bring to building, maintaining, growing a society.

    You make the assumption that all married heterosexual couples have kids, or even want to have kids. They do not, yet they are allowed to marry. And what of every factor that gay people and gay families bring to every factor of building, maintaining and growing a society?

    We, homosexuals, are not equal to heterosexuals in this capacity. And, btw, neither are single heterosexuals equal in this capacity. That’s why through the years, single people have often felt left out in social settings. It’s just the way it is.

    I think you may have missed my ramblings about equality and individuals and groups. Many minority groups are not equal to other groups or even to the one group that is seen as the majority. That doesn’t mean, however, that gay couples don’t deserve to be treated equally under the law. Marriage is about more than promulgation of the species, and understanding that gay couples do, in increasing numbers, have children, its hard to find any reason to exclude them from the institution.

    Everyone on the planet has issues with feeling not as good as, at certain times. It’s part of the human condition. But, we shouldn’t take those feelings and try to upset, corrupt, and ultimately destroy social cohesion.

    I think you confuse trying to corrupt and destroy social cohesion with a minority group asking to be treated equally under the law. Again, these same arguments harken back to arguments used to deny so many minority groups equal status. I find it surprising to see you using them. There is absolutely no evidence that gay marriage, if that is what we are talking about and it seems to be, corrupts or ultimately destroys social cohesion. Although I have to admit, I’m not entirely certain what you mean by the term.

  61. I spent hours and hours painstakingly writing various publications that repeated NARTH’s version of Dr. Collins, or repeated what had been further distorted by another party and then repeated again. One single publication, The Baptist Press of all things, made the correction. And then only because Bob Stith seemed to be a reasonable guy.

    David Roberts,
    Did you ever share this information on this blog?
    I’m also wondering if the people at the publications you wrote to, and who chose not to respond, are aware of the other side of you who writes here. If so, they are aware of your unwillingness to retract an inaccuracy or distortion you have made when it has been brought to your attantion. Your propensity for becoming sarcastic and resort to bullying when challenged or called out for inaccuracies is becoming your reputation. If you stopped all this ineffective posturing, perhaps what you say would be taken seriously. Asking someone else to do what you are unwilling to do does not bode well for credibility or integrity. If they know this side of you, which has nothing to do with being gay or straight, then that might be just one reason they chose not to respond to all your hard work.

  62. Ann,
    If you will please kindly point out where I said similar things about you, I will happily and readily apologize, if I have not already done so.
    And as it is late on a Friday I don’t readily recollect your efforts to have me stop the abuse and bullying techniques that I have inflicted on you for years. It might also be helpful to direct me to such efforts so that I can be reminded.

  63. You will absolutely not want to hear this. You may deny it. Nevertheless, it is true.
    David, you personally engage in abuse towards me. Not my view, not my perspectives, but me. You do so in hurtful and demeaning ways. You do so when I’m here and evidently you do so when I have not even read the site in weeks.
    It has become a pattern. You justify it by imagining that I do as attack people personally as well. I don’t. And even if I did, that would still not take away from the fact that you are engaging in a pattern of abuse.

    Timothy,
    Your comment reminds me of my efforts to have you stop the abuse and bullying techniques you inflicted on me for years.

  64. OK, so they are about the same but *should* be better. Fair enough. It is bewildering why they are so bad considering that the facts are generally in their favor.

    What facts are “generally” in NARTH’s favor? The facts certainly don’t favor the “father/son alienation” hypothesis that NARTH fervently clings to as the primary basis for explaining male homosexuality.
    To be fair, the facts also don’t favor a single “gay gene” etiology that some uninformed gay activists continue to parrot. So when NARTH is up against a scientifically-illiterate activist who’s talking about a “gay gene,” and NARTH is saying that there’s almost certainly no such thing as a “gay gene,” then in that particular argument the facts do happen to favor NARTH.
    But the scientific community as a whole does not expect to find a “gay gene” and is considering any number of etiologies for homosexuality, while NARTH remains stubbornly loyal to the “aloof father” idea, despite its lack of predictive power.
    For example, I’m not aware of any studies that have showed elevated rates of homosexuality among the sons of Navy men, despite the obvious fact that the career demands of Navy fathers mean that they’re often totally absent from the household for long months at a time during their sons’ crucial toddler years, and that this is peculiarly true of the Navy (compared with the other services) even during peacetime. NARTH claims that the a failure to bond with dad during years 2-4 is especially likely to contribute to male homosexuality, so if there’s truth to this, we might expect to see more homosexuality among sons of military fathers, and perhaps particularly among male “Navy brats.”

    Do you think there’s any chance they could re-brand and start over? I suspect most of the key people would need to be different to gain any credibility. I’d also like to see them become even more secular while welcoming the spiritual where it makes sense.

    Oh, geez… I hate to disappoint you, Notpreston, but NARTH is not going to become “more secular”, because NARTH’s entire raison d’etre is to produce quasi-scientific talking points for folks who have a theological beef with homosexuality.

  65. Concomitant with civil rights, comes responsibility. Responsibility for one’s own actions within the limits of one’s own space. Walking down the road of compassion, sympathy, empathy for our neighbors; doesn’t mean being complicit in bad behavior, or excusing irresponsibility.

    That is true.
    However, implicit in this thought is the presumption that gay people are, in whole, seeking rights without responsibility. Or that such efforts are either irresponsible or bad behavior. I do not think that is the case.
    Sure there are always some who want what they want and damn anyone else. But it is my belief that most gay people – and especially those most involved in the marriage movement – truly believe that equality is not only better for them but better for society.
    If I believed that marriage equality would result in the destabilization of the institution or in the disruption of social cohesion, I would oppose the effort. It isn’t that I just don’t care about such arguments, it is that I see them as lacking in any validity.
    And that is where the supporters of Proposition 8 had their downfall.
    For the very first time in court, their arguments were actually considered. Not as rhetoric, but actually given an opportunity to illustrate some evidence to support their views. They could not.

  66. Teresa,
    I don’t find your views outlandish.
    Each of us finds our own worth. Mine is different, but I can’t fault you for having views not to foreign to views I once held.
    And I think there could be valid arguments that would exclude same-sex couples from marriage recognition. You probably could articulate several.
    However such arguments tend not to fare well when applied sweepingly or to people as a class. When we go from some to many to all, then it becomes a matter of arguing that the murderer on death row and his pen pal are entitled, by merit of their heterosexuality, to marriage rights that are denied to the most upstanding, committed, and socially valuable same-sex couple, because of their homosexuality.
    If we are to apply legal (or even social) restrictions on people because of who they are, we should be able to explain the burdens we are imposing in terms that actually apply to them. To say “children raised by their biological parents do better” may be an argument that has strong emotional appeal, but how does it apply to the man on death row who murdered children or to the lesbians that are raising children who were not wanted by their biological parents.
    If the line we draw does not reflect the purpose that we are espousing for drawing the line, then it is not a valid line.

  67. Eddy,

    Oh, Timothy, what an amazing and non-stop judge you are!

    I’m just curious. Is this the way that you begin conversations with people outside this blogsite? I do hope that I am more courteous to you and apologize if I am not.
    But as to your comment, I disagree. I do not think that I saw a “this v. that” comparison where Carole only intended to share her own happiness. I just can’t come to the same conclusion as you based on the context of her comment.
    If you reread the entire paragraph that Carole wrote, I think that you will agree that there is a pattern in which Carole cast her sexual orientation in terms of children and grandchildren, love and family. This was not a matter of “you prefer yours and I prefer mine.”
    And I think that if you read her entire comment, it is consistent. As she put in her final salvo

    You want what biology can’t deliver–or you want straight to lie to you.

  68. Jayhuck,

    From a “purely” social view, or is this a social view that is colored by your religion? I’m curious

    My view is colored by many factors: age, common sense, biology, and I’m a Christian.

    However, heterosexuals did not have to pass some litmus test in order to be found worthy of marriage. Homosexuals in the same way do not have to prove themselves in any way to be found deserving of this type of equality.

    Here’s the nub of the issue. Heterosexuals shouldn’t have to have a litmus test to marry. It’s how society operates. Families are the basic building block of society. Heterosexuals get to marry; just because of every factor they bring to building, maintaining, growing a society.
    We, homosexuals, are not equal to heterosexuals in this capacity. And, btw, neither are single heterosexuals equal in this capacity. That’s why through the years, single people have often felt left out in social settings. It’s just the way it is.
    Everyone on the planet has issues with feeling not as good as, at certain times. It’s part of the human condition. But, we shouldn’t take those feelings and try to upset, corrupt, and ultimately destroy social cohesion.

    I think you could find similar attitudes directed at black people, or people of any other minority fighting for their place at the table.

    Now, here’s a hot button issue, if there ever was one. Concomitant with civil rights, comes responsibility. Responsibility for one’s own actions within the limits of one’s own space. Walking down the road of compassion, sympathy, empathy for our neighbors; doesn’t mean being complicit in bad behavior, or excusing irresponsibility.
    Jayhuck, we’re all products of our environment, but we don’t have to be victims of it.

  69. David,
    The magazines and other news sources which reported false characterizations about Dr. Collins views did not retract those statements because you are mean.

  70. Honestly, if I were the devil and I wanted to lead people away from Christ, I doubt I could do any better than Christs’ followers.

  71. Jayhuck,
    I have known Warren for a long time and respect him deeply. Especially his effort to process the data on Same Sex Attraction through the highest Christian filter: the truth.
    It is a redemptive process for him, I think, based upon some of his past decisions and based upon the bad behaviors of fellow Christians.
    His concerns early on at NARTH were largely theoretical…that there were multiple reasons for SSA as opposed to the monolithic one proposed by Joe Nicolosi. Through Warren’s efforts some broadening of the etiology of SSA did occur at NARTH…some. And Dean Byrd acknowledged to me personally and privately many times that for NARTH to grow and survive this had to occur.
    A chronology of events followed, and these are Warren’s stories to tell, of repeated efforts to reign in odd political views, odd theoretical and treatment regimens, and odd people who were endorsed by NARTH. These efforts took him to board rooms around the country to both challenge NARTH’s view of SSA as myopic and to warn some who mindlessly endorsed all that NARTH said and did.
    In the last 4 months of my tenure as a member of the Scientific Advisory Board I attempted on multiple occasions to cajole, correct and persuade various leaders at NARTH to depoliticize their website and create a larger identity around being “scientific” to include representing soundly all theories associated with SSA.
    All of this was done through back-channels in a collaborative and respectful manner.
    The response, from my point of view (subjective), was to acknowledge short-comings, to talk about the importance of unity, to demonize the GLBT advocacy groups or the APA, and to take little or no corrective action.
    David Roberts, above, criticizes people like Ann and Mary for their wish to find a redemptive process. It is a deep demand within Christianity to seek it privately first. He is wrong to mock them.
    Warren and I and others have attempted to do this on multiple occasions, Mary and Ann could not have known this.

  72. Warren, I was thinking. … Would it be useful for you to put up a page here on NARTH, making clear what you and David have just discussed? The topic comes up frequently, and it seems to me it would be helpful to have a page to direct people to for the straight scoop.

  73. David Roberts, above, criticizes people like Ann and Mary for their wish to find a redemptive process. It is a deep demand within Christianity to seek it privately first. He is wrong to mock them.

    Are they trying to find a “redemptive process” or are they trying to find an excuse for bad behavior? I’m honestly not sure what they are trying to do. I find it odd that you seem to know their true intentions.
    I appreciate your efforts in trying to reign in NARTH, but that in no way detracts from what I said above.

  74. I am a little puzzled about how NARTH can keep doing this kind of thing without observers catching the pattern.

    @Warren, David Blakeslee, et. al.,
    First, thank you David Blakeslee and Warren for sharing an inside story that really demonstrated Christian behavior at its best. You are both to be commended for your conduct.
    Being Catholic, I was associated with the Catholic ‘change’ ministries, Courage/Encourage. Courage is absolutely enamored with NARTH. NARTH is heavily promoted through Courage literature, conferences, meetings. I’ve tried on numerous occasions, unfortunately not in the Christian manner as Warren and David Blakeslee demonstrated, I’m afraid; to demonstrate to various people, some in quite high positions, the difficulty with NARTH. They didn’t want to hear anything adverse about NARTH. They wouldn’t listen, read, or try to understand.
    The Courage position in very politicized; albeit, in a shadowy way. Anything that NARTH says is the gospel; anything from the gay is evil, bad, etc. If the gay states anything, it’s gotta be wrong. If NARTH states something, knee-jerk with Courage it’s right.
    In the end, this will damage only NARTH and Courage. They’ve become blind to anything outside their myopic view. They seem incapable of seeing a “we” in any of this. I feel great sorrow for those involved in Courage/Encourage because of this.
    Thank you, again, gentlemen, for sharing what you have; and, most importantly, showing a Christian attitude and behavior. I only wish my behavior was half as good.

  75. NARTH is about the following

    They misrepresent, obfuscate, twist others’ words around and seem to have little desire for the truth. These are the values they display to the professional and non-professional alike. They are not a credible organization and I don’t think anyone in the professional world takes them seriously outside themselves. The same would go for the American College of Pediatricians.

  76. Honestly, if I were the devil and I wanted to lead people away from Christ, I doubt I could do any better than Christs’ followers.

    His most effective disguise is as an angel of light.

  77. NARTH continues to fight the battles of the 1990s. Those days are over. I know activists stretch the truth a lot on both sides but NARTH should deal with what is now in science and not what was. My guess is that part of why they continue to bang on 1990s research is because those battles are relatively easy to win. The brain evidence for orientation is much more difficult for them, hence, you see them going on and on about genetics.

    Yes, I’m afraid that’s true. And whatever good they may be to do is sadly mitigated by this retroactive stance.

  78. I disagree with your assessment, Ken. I don’t find the first statement of Byrd’s you quote to be problematic. He could logically conclude what he did from Collins.
    And you are saying that Byrd inferred what Collins also says he did: “That certainly doesn’t imply, however, that those other undefined factors are inherently alterable.” Where did Byrd say or imply that any of the factors that may predispose one to homosexuality are “inherently alterable”? I infer from his article that a possibility of altering exists if Collins is right that heritability and other factors only predispose one to homosexuality rather than predetermine the outcome. Frankly, I am surprised that Collins would make the leap to put those words in Byrd’s mouth. And it does sounds as if he may have been egged on to do it.
    I also think Byrd is somewhat justified in his misgivings about Roberts’ understanding or opinions of NARTH. Did Collins really know much about NARTH before this flap began, I wonder?
    Please do not construe my attempts to get at the facts here as a position of support for NARTH across the board. But they do have a rightful place at the table.
    Lastly, is there anything that NARTH does that you approve of or find to be legitimate, David Roberts? Are you dispassionately examining the facts?

  79. What good does NARTH do? Just curious…

    I think they provide an alternative for those who feel their options may be limited. They also provide an outlet and a platform for psychologists and shrinks who are disenchanted with APA or who feel APA does not represent the whole field. They have a right to their views, but of course, not to misquote or misrepresent others’ work.

  80. You’re muddying the waters with those quotes above:
    Collins did not say this – Byrd did

    I know that. How did I state otherwise? You inferred incorrectly again. My, we do have a problem with that here, don’t we?

  81. How can you say he is quoting Collin’s accurately when the author himself is saying that he is not. Am I perhaps inferring incorrectly….. again?

    No, Warren cleared that up in his subsequent comment. I felt (still do to some extent) that Byrd was deducing not incorrectly that Collins may think homosexuality might be alterable to some extent, regardless of what factors predispose one to it.

  82. Debbie Thurman# ~ Mar 22, 2011 at 10:15 am
    “I felt (still do to some extent) that Byrd was deducing not incorrectly that Collins may think homosexuality might be alterable to some extent, regardless of what factors predispose one to it.”
    Even if it was an honest misunderstanding, Byrd should have checked with Collins before attributing claims to him he didn’t make. David Roberts had no trouble getting Collins to clarify the matter, why couldn’t Byrd?
    and this isn’t an isolated incident with NARTH. Mis-representing research is an endemic problem at NARTH.

  83. You’re seriously comparing the misrepresentations (intentional or not) of a supposedly professional agency to a comment made about you in the comments section of a blog article?

    Jon Trouten,
    A mis-representation is a mis-representation. A lie is a lie. To withhold a retraction, regardless how the subject or person is prioritized, still leaves a mis-representation and an untruth. And this speaks to the credibility and integrity of the person who is not retracting the comments, whether it be narth or David Roberts, or Dean Byrd.

    I would think that it would be in NARTH’s best professional interest to apologize for misrepresenting the work of other professionals. It’s not very professional to do otherwise.

    After the information David Blakeslee imparted, which was succinct and had substance, I absolutely agree with your second comment.

  84. Ann: You’re seriously comparing the misrepresentations (intentional or not) of a supposedly professional agency to a comment made about you in the comments section of a blog article?
    I would think that it would be in NARTH’s best professional interest to apologize for misrepresenting the work of other professionals. It’s not very professional to do otherwise.

  85. Debbie,
    I owe you an apology. The quote you listed was Collin’s, the interpretation of that quote is from Byrd, where he twists it just enough to be more NARTH-friendly.
    I don’t understand what you mean with this quote though:

    He quoted Collins accurately (I also just read those excerpts from his book) and in context, as far as I can see.The only problem I would have with it is the title, which is probably misleading.

    How can you say he is quoting Collin’s accurately when the author himself is saying that he is not. Am I perhaps inferring incorrectly….. again? 🙂

  86. To further clarify my position, I agree with Warren’s statement here:

    The first problem here is that the NARTH article does not consider what “science could and could not say about the genesis of homosexuality.” It did not focus on “whether not homosexuality could be explained by a simple biological theory.” Nor did it conclude that “evidence for a simple biological theory of homosexuality was lacking.” What it did do was briefly discuss estimates of heritability based on several twin studies.

    This explanation by NARTH was weaker than Byrd’s article.

    1. @Debbie – When you say their current explanation was weaker than Byrd’s article, I agree. They have been going from marginal to much worse. I know of no scientist, gay, straight, liberal or conservative or anywhere in between that believe same-sex attraction is directly and exclusively inherited. NARTH continues to fight the battles of the 1990s. Those days are over. I know activists stretch the truth a lot on both sides but NARTH should deal with what is now in science and not what was. My guess is that part of why they continue to bang on 1990s research is because those battles are relatively easy to win. The brain evidence for orientation is much more difficult for them, hence, you see them going on and on about genetics.

  87. What good does NARTH do?

    They misrepresent, obfuscate, twist others’ words around and seem to have little desire for the truth. These are the values they display to the professional and non-professional alike. They are not a credible organization and I don’t think anyone in the professional world takes them seriously outside themselves. The same would go for the American College of Pediatricians.

  88. David Blakeslee,
    Thank you – I agree with your comments and appreciate you answering my question about narth. It is kind of what I thought but since I wasn’t sure, thought I would ask.

  89. Now, after Collins has weighed in on the article, it’s up to NARTH to apologize for the misunderstanding and move on.

    Has NARTH ever apologized for misrepresenting another’s work? I’m just curious because I don’t remember them doing this.

  90. Has NARTH ever apologized for misrepresenting another’s work? I’m just curious because I don’t remember them doing this.

    Jayhuck,
    You are unique, as is Timothy, for apologizing when you have misrepresened someone or something, whether it was intentional or unintentional. I have not followed narth as many others have, so I do not know if they mis-represent, or apologize, if they do. I do know David Roberts has misrepresented me on this thread and I asked him to retract it – so far he has not. I don’t see this as any different from what he is accusing narth of.

  91. If Collins says he meant that homosexuality could be or is one of the human behavior traits excluded from his “virtually none of them,” then I guess we have to take him at his word. But Byrd could not have known that when he wrote his article, and his assessment was not outlandish at the time. Now, after Collins has weighed in on the article, it’s up to NARTH to apologize for the misunderstanding and move on.
    I don’t quite agree with the way you have written this, however:

    The passage on 262 is not about homosexuality, but if you include it in an article on homosexuality, saying it came from Collins book, then the impression is that Collins believes homosexuality is due to childhood experiences and free will choice.

    I don’t think that is the conclusion. I think the conclusion is more along the lines of Collins believing that those things may influence homosexuality, not predetermine them. If genes are not predeterminers, then why would we believe he thinks environment is?

  92. For reference, here again are the two passages from Collins’ book appendix that I believe are in question:

    Evidence from twin studies does in fact support the conclusion that heritable factors play a role in male homosexuality. However, the likelihood that the identical twin of a homosexual male will also be gay is about 20 percent (compared with 2-4 percent of males in the general population), indicating that sexual orientation is genetically influenced but not hardwired by DNA, and that whatever genes are involved represent predispositions, not predeterminations (p. 260).
    There is an inescapable component of heritability to many human behavior traits. For virtually none of them is heredity ever close to predictive. Environment, particularly childhood experiences, and the prominent role of individual free will choices have a profound effect on us (p. 262).

    1. Debbie wrote:

      For reference, here again are the two passages from Collins’ book appendix that I believe are in question:
      Evidence from twin studies does in fact support the conclusion that heritable factors play a role in male homosexuality. However, the likelihood that the identical twin of a homosexual male will also be gay is about 20 percent (compared with 2-4 percent of males in the general population), indicating that sexual orientation is genetically influenced but not hardwired by DNA, and that whatever genes are involved represent predispositions, not predeterminations (p. 260).
      There is an inescapable component of heritability to many human behavior traits. For virtually none of them is heredity ever close to predictive. Environment, particularly childhood experiences, and the prominent role of individual free will choices have a profound effect on us (p. 262).

      Collins objected to juxtaposing these passages together as if he meant to include homosexuality in the phrase “many human behavior traits” with the subsequent reference to childhood experiences and free will choices. The passage on 262 is not about homosexuality, but if you include it in an article on homosexuality, saying it came from Collins book, then the impression is that Collins believes homosexuality is due to childhood experiences and free will choice. As Collins pointed out to Roberts, his words were juxtaposed to give a different meaning than he intended.
      When I read that section of his book, I did not take him to be opining on sexual orientation specifically when he wrote the conclusion page 262. There are many traits which are generally determined by a multitude of factors, but the set of factors are different for each factor. And once in place some are more alterable than others. When I read the Byrd article, I thought it was fairly tame but that he was making a case for free will in the development of homosexuality which I don’t understand, nor do I believe Collins meant that. And then lo and behold, Collins affirmed that impression.

  93. I really don’t see what the argument is … Dr. Collins .. who is the expert and author of the quoted/misquoted book is in disagreement with the smearing of his words as has already been clearly evidenced by his own letter on the topic. NARTH .. rather than listen to the author, has decided to smear someone else in the process and ignore the author/expert they are quoting/misquoting. Perhaps this is common in the blogosphere but is it not common (or at least shouldn’t be) for a Christian organization. My impression (from other threads) was that most of the people participating on this thread already find fault with NARTH for their unprofessional approach .. so … I really don’t see what there is to argue about.
    Dave

  94. Mary, dear, I want them to be remembered because they are true

    Okay. You shall be known as a man for a quick observation that is niethr complete nor thorough and in step with the many that you niether took the time nor the care to discover otherwise.

  95. Wow. Ann and Mary bring the crazy then Thurman brings up the rear.

    Stephen,
    What do you mean when you say “bring the crazy” and “brings up the rear”?

  96. It’s a figure of speech, Ann. What I mean is that you and Mary pretty reliably bring the crazy to the discussion – aka. the irrational nonsense – and then Mrs Thurman can be relied upon to drive the last nail into the coffin of reason.
    Before you go all victim on us you might stop to read over this thread in which several very intelligent posters tried to take you by the hand to walk you through the argument but you would have none of it, you insisted the balloon was red when everyone with eyes to see could see it was blue. So boo hoo. I’m the big bad man and you’re the pretty princess. Nighty night. Sleep tight.

  97. Mary: If you told me X, and then I said that you implied Y, and then you said, no, I did not mean to imply Y but rather X and then I kept telling people that Mary said X but saying X implies that she means Y, you would not like it. Furthermore, X would still not be Y, no matter how convinced I was that X=Y

    If this were the case, I would make one statement about my work and let the rest of the blogosphere have their antics. Read the person’s work or get out of the argument. Besides, no matter how many times someone tells me I read the bible incorrectly and have assumed an implication where none it exists – I continue to do so. Seems Collins left the subject wide open.

  98. wow, some people here really REALLY want NARTH’s misrepresentation to be “correct.”

    A perfect example of the inference of something not actually stated. And not attributed to any real person, either. That’s what I’m talking about. (Warren meant to say he would be inferring Y rather than Mary implying Y in her statement from his example.)
    Lest you perceive me as “one of those people, Emily,” I have no real feelings either way about Collins or Byrd, NIH or NARTH. I do hold to the belief that one ought to be very careful in the use of previously published material, scientific or literary or whatever. That’s what permissions are for, when they are acknowledged. Copyrights are also violated all day long in the blogosphere, FWIW.

  99. Mary,

    Besides, no matter how many times someone tells me I read the bible incorrectly and have assumed an implication where none it exists…

    The difference here is that we can actually speak with the author of the work and ask him what he meant. Which is what happened. With the Bible, we don’t really have that opportunity.

  100. Wow. Ann and Mary bring the crazy then Thurman brings up the rear.
    This thread is a perfect paradigm of why we can’t have a reasonable discourse about matters that concern some of us nearly.
    Because some of us are dealing from the crazy deck.

  101. wow, some people here really REALLY want NARTH’s misrepresentation to be “correct.” Instead of so desperately trying to get science to back up the belief that gay people are not hard-wired and can change their sexual orientation, why not just stick to religious belief?? Isn’t that supposed to be “greater” than science, anyway?

  102. Mary: If you told me X, and then I said that you implied Y, and then you said, no, I did not mean to imply Y but rather X and then I kept telling people that Mary said X but saying X implies that she means Y, you would not like it. Furthermore, X would still not be Y, no matter how convinced I was that X=Y.

    LOL. While this is an egregious crime in the scientific world, it is business as usual, every day, in the blogosphere. But of course, only the kettle is black, not the pot.

  103. David Blakeslee – Thanks for providing that background.
    What is strange about this situation is that correcting the original article would not require a huge fix. Simply placing Collins words about free will in their proper context and noting that they did not specifically relate to same-sex attraction would help. Also, noting that free will does not imply choice of attraction would help. All Collins discussed was genetic factors but did not opine on how these factors related to the behavioral expression of sexual orientation or the ability to use free will to do anything about them. When he mentioned childhood factors, Collins was not referral specifically to homosexuality. He expressed no opinion on that topic.
    If NARTH is really interested in being scientific, then they will do these easy steps and follow that with balanced articles about the research undermining reparative drive theory — since of course they are so interested in causal factors.

  104. Wow. Ann and Mary bring the crazy then Thurman brings up the rear.
    This thread is a perfect paradigm of why we can’t have a reasonable discourse about matters that concern some of us nearly.
    Because some of us are dealing from the crazy deck.

    Do you want me to remember these remarks the next time we have a discussion or should I just dismiss them?

  105. wow, some people here really REALLY want NARTH’s misrepresentation to be “correct.”

    Actually, I can give a rats ass about who is right. I, however – instead of taking sides did go and purchase Collins’ book and have started reading it. From that point, I will make a decision as to what he wrote. Emily – maybe you should do the same?

  106. I have Collins book and know what he said. However, the issue is still that the dispute is actually between Dr. Collins and NARTH with Collins being the expert on both genetics and what he meant when he wrote what he wrote.
    If Dean Byrd simply interpreted him incorrectly, then when Collins expressed concerns about it and issued his statement, it seems to me that the thing to do would be to correct the article or even just add the statement to the article as an addendum as Byrd did the comment from Steve Simon. Just add it on and let the reader decide.
    Instead, they have accused XGW of a false charge and continued in other venues (Amer College of Peds and the recent LDS article in the SLC paper) to make the same interpretation.

  107. Ann, what more do you need? What would NARTH have to do before you realized what they are about?
    Dr. Collins writes a book. Byrd takes quotes from that book and intertwines them with his own and others statements. Dr. Collins says they are using his words to say something he did not intend, i.e. changing the meaning. Repeat. Repeat. Repeat with emphasis on NIH website, directly showing disdain for groups misrepresenting his work for their own purposes.
    Byrd has not been banished to a dungeon, he could have said anything in response that he wanted. He could have contacted Dr. Collins. He could have responded to me or to Warren. None of this happened, and really, the only opinion that matters here, as was stated, is the person whose work has been, by his own statement, misused.
    You are arguing from a position that has no merit. The only conclusion is that you wish to believe NARTH in spite of the evidence, therefore no more evidence will change your mind. Continued debate will be useless.

  108. I have read Ann’s posts on this blog for several years. David, your comments are based on sarcasm and ignorance. Ann writes what she means and does not mince words or try to. Sure sounds like you are trying to mix up her words into something they are not. Take what she writes at face value – nothing malicious.

  109. David,
    Why don’t you do the right thing and retract what you said about me, lest you put yourself on the same level as what you accuse narth of.

  110. Honestly, I get tired of the he said, she said game. I can see both sides to this issue. Personally, I don’t like the idea that someone’s remarks are being embellished but I can’t say that those embellishments are not implied by his own writing. It’s just that he did not say them directly.

  111. You are arguing from a position that has no merit. The only conclusion is that you wish to believe NARTH in spite of the evidence, therefore no more evidence will change your mind. Continued debate will be useless.

    Just look at how you are doing what you accuse narth and David Byrd of – you are distorting what I am saying, making assumptions that become your truth, actually lying that I wish to believe narth, and wrapping it all up by closing down the conversation.

  112. People do that all the time. Warren – I wouldn’t like it – but that is what it is.

  113. Mary, if you read Warren’s post, you will see that is not the case. What NARTH does significantly changes the meaning of Dr. Collin’s words. This is why he has gone to such lengths to make that clear.
    The real mystery here is why Pruden is addressing a four year old issue now.

  114. Actually, Timothy, I once walked up to a nun and said “And YOU call yourself a ‘Daughter of CHARITY?” when I witnessed her treat another student abominably.
    But as to the rest of your comment to me:
    I’m dismayed that you can’t see it. You’ve come on gangbusters in at least three comments now. Two directed at David B, one directed at Carole. In all three of them, you weren’t a fellow blogger…you were JUDGE. You declared what you found them guilty of…you entertained NO possibility (and still don’t) that you could be misreading or over-reacting…and once you pronounced your judgement you went sailing off on a rant.
    I laughed when you said to David B. that you don’t personally attack people.

    So no, Carole, I don’t want you to be unhappy with your orientation. I just want you to treat it – and others – responsibly.

    Uh…if you say you want her to do this, you’re actually accusing her of treating ‘it–and others–irresponsibly. Based on your judgement of her words. (Most of us admit that dialoguing with strangers, in writing rather than face to face, on difficult subjects can breed misunderstanding. But you left no room for the fact that you might have misunderstood. You pronounced the judgement I cited.

    I’m not “accusing” you of feeling superior. You have pretty much already staked out your position. It’s certainly not missing from this paragraph.

    After Carole explained for the second or third time ‘difference’ rather than ‘superiority’, you seem to craftily call her out as either a liar or deluded here. You’re actually good with these kinds of ‘what the heck did he just say’ statements. You put ‘accusing’ in quotes which gives a bit of inflection to it…then you follow with ‘you have pretty much…’ and ‘it’s certainly not missing…’. So, if you weren’t trying to say “I’m not accusing you…you accuse yourself” then you might want to work on your word skills because that’s certainly what came across.

    You are not evolutionarily driven or biologically compelled to see gay people as inferior.

    Would you need to say this if you weren’t directly inferring that she does see gay people as inferior? (We’re back to ‘deluded’ or ‘liar’ on that one.)

    And I hope and believe that you are the sort of person who would reject rather than embrace racist or other hate-based impulses. You have chosen to believe such impulses to be wrong.
    It is within your ability to do the same for your views about gay people.
    If you choose.

    She has it within her ability, does she? If she chooses? Meaning it’s not yet in her experience…meaning that currently she has racist and other hate-based impulses towards gay people. Yeah, Timothy, you don’t resort to calling names, you assassinate a person’s character all from your interpretation of their written words.

  115. Jayhuck,
    Just my experience with the two, earlier with Timothy, lately with David R.
    Marriage as an institution is broken and somewhat corrupted. I have always argued that this first happened with heterosexuals.
    Trying to repair it, to have it return to a more conservative, well defined institution preceded the whole gay marriage debate.
    It has very little to do with heterosexism, or paternalism or any number of other “isms.”
    Timothy and David R see marriage rights for gays and lesbians through a different window than many on the conservative side do. They resort to a polarizing and inflammatory name-calling technique as a way to control and truncate the debate.
    They have a good friend in Wayne Besen, who models for them how to talk in this debate.

  116. You’re right, Jayhuck; I should’ve written “some gay activists will always be suckers for strategies that are ‘flashy,’ even if these strategies are predictably prone to backfire.”
    And of course, this isn’t a problem unique to gay activism — in any type of activism, there will be a temptation to keep coming back to methods that gain a huge amount of short-lived press coverage and high-fives from people who already agree with you, even if these methods are ultimately off-putting to society at large.

  117. It’s not applied broadly to all of heterosexual culture, only those who believe that heterosexuals are superior in whatever way to homosexuals.

    It appears to me that if you use a nebulous phrase like “in whatever way” to define and describe “heterosexism,” the result will be a inevitable tendency to apply “heterosexism” broadly.

  118. Luckily, that is why I posted a definition from a more reliable source than myself

    Grasshopper, the first rule of citing wikipedia is NOT to assume that any given article or definition is “reliable” simply because it appears on wikipedia.
    In this case, the article flagrantly breaks wikipedia’s “Neutral Point-of-View” requirement in the very first sentence, by defining “heterosexism” as “unscientific,” and the article continues in the same Consciousness-Raising vein.
    And in paragraph 3, we get: “Given that all current cultures are heterosexist to some degree, and the global culture is as well, it can be argued that all people carry extrinsic heterosexist attitudes
    To repeat what I said, if “heterosexism” is delimited in terms that are vague or elastic or otherwise not actually delimiting, the tendency will be to find heterosexism everywhere. And indeed, according to this article, the label “heterosexist” applies to EVERY SINGLE PERSON ON THE PLANET.
    This is not good encyclopedic writing. (It’s pretty good pamphleteering, though.)

  119. Throbert (I keep wanting to shorten your name but it would be wrong) ;),

    And of course, this isn’t a problem unique to gay activism — in any type of activism, there will be a temptation to keep coming back to methods that gain a huge amount of short-lived press coverage and high-fives from people who already agree with you, even if these methods are ultimately off-putting to society at large.

    Yeah – I agree!

  120. Carole,

    What I do know is you are only about discourse for a very, very short while, as long as no one says something with which you disagree. When that happens, you go into flame-throwing mode. Whether that’s because you have a hair-trigger temper or because you find it comforting or because you think it somehow effective, I don’t know.

    I think you might be projecting just a little. You’ve proven that you’re very adept at flame-throwing.

  121. Eddy,
    Calling someone “pathetic” is the kind of thing I expect people to say when they’ve lost the war of ideas. Its name calling, pure and simple.
    Carol,

    Hey, Eddy! (Sometimes, you just gotta laugh!!),

    Now there is something we can agree on!

  122. If you will please kindly point out where I said similar things about you, I will happily and readily apologize, if I have not already done so.

    No need to – you have already apologized and it will always be appreciated. Your comment to David Blakeslee reminded me of when I would say the same things to you for years. I would like to say I am sorry to you for bringing it up – it was unneccessary for me to do so and I guess, in some way, is an indicator that past hurts take awhile to forget, even if forgiven. I am sorry Timothy for revisiting something that your apology adequately took care of.

  123. Carole,
    I think you proved you could stoop to just about any level required when you called Timothy “pathetic”. Thank goodness for your rational and tempered dialogue. LOL

  124. Carole,
    On my way to settle in for the evening and just wanted to say I am grateful that Eddy, who I admire and respect, spoke up to challenge what was being said in response to your comments. I appreciate what you write and it seems to always make me sit up straight and pay close attention 😀

  125. Teresa,
    I agree and still think there is something more to this story. When biases become more important than the truth, or seeking the truth, then all we have is what we had before – subjective interpretations that support biases. We can all assume why Dean Byrd or narth hasn’t retracted their initial interpretation or we could seek truth by asking him. Perhaps there is something we don’t know.

  126. This might be easier to read:
    Because at the end of the day they’re still…[theorists]…stubbornly trying to shore up their outdated pet theory with arguments to the authority of a mainstream scientist whose prestige they envy but whose thinking they neither accept nor even necessarily understand.

  127. Ann and Mary, here’s the problem with the dialogue you propose between Byrd and Collins:
    Suppose Byrd conceded that his NARTH article had been “sloppy” (D’oh!) in quoting Collins, and as a quid pro quo, Collins conceded that NARTH’s misrepresentation of his words may not have been intentional or malicious, but was simply, well, “sloppy reporting.”
    What do think NARTH would be saying on its website and newsletters the next day? I daresay the headline would be something like “NIH Director Admits NARTH Did Not Lie”.
    The part about the citations of Collins being “sloppy” might be mentioned in fine print at the bottom, along with a mea culpa from Byrd — “oopsie, Pobody’s Nerfect!”
    But what people remembered from the story would be “Collins exonerates NARTH.”

  128. Throbert – NARTH is still NARTH, true. But if they had posted Collins accurately, I probably would not have posted about it, or if I did, it would have been to warn that apocalypse was near.

  129. Instead of all this confirmation bias and the he said/he said, and all the subjective interpretations, why not suggest and/or allow Dean Byrd and Francis Collins to address each other regarding this issue, come to a written determination what the truth is, and then let them mutually share that with the rest of us

    Great idea!

  130. Throbert,
    I do understand. It just seems to me that if Francis Collins and Dr. Throckmorton are taking issue with a perception that Dean Byrd is willfully distorting what Francis Collins wrote to advance narth, that he be given the chance to clarify his intreptation of what was written.

  131. Mary: If you told me X, and then I said that you implied Y, and then you said, no, I did not mean to imply Y but rather X and then I kept telling people that Mary said X but saying X implies that she means Y, you would not like it. Furthermore, X would still not be Y, no matter how convinced I was that X=Y.

    Warren: I would suggest that the inaccuracy is really beside the point, or at least it’s only a secondary matter. The main thing is that NARTH is trying to ride the coattails of the NIH director, in the hopes that some of his scientific prestige will rub off on them.
    Thus, even if by some accident or miracle NARTH had managed to quote Collins in a non-misleading way, it still wouldn’t really be to NARTH’s credit.
    Because at the end of the day they’re still homeopaths or Lysenkoists stubbornly trying to shore up their outdated pet theory with arguments to the authority of a mainstream scientist whose prestige they envy but whose thinking they neither accept nor even necessarily understand.
    So if they had quoted Collins in a way that wasn’t at all misleading, Collins might still have reason to get annoyed at NARTH and say to them, “Look, it’s patently obvious that you jive turkeys would barely pass an undergrad-level genetics course and you’re only quoting from my book because I’m the NIH director. So knock it off!”
    (And to be totally clear, I’m not comparing ALL “change therapy” to Lysenkoism, the ideologically-driven bogus science that wrought havoc on Soviet agriculture; I’m specifically talking about Nicolosi’s one-size-fits-all Freudian model.)

  132. I do not know Dean Byrd, nor have I ever communicated with him. I am not sure, however, I thought you knew both he and Francis Collins. If so, it seems that it would be in character for you to contact Dean Byrd as you did Francis Collins and ask his reasoning for doing what you are interpreting/accusing him of. Perhaps you have – I am just not sure. Further, I thought it might be helpful to ask them to come to a difinitive and mutual clarification as to what Francis Collins said and what he meant by it, specifically addressing the issue of homosexuality, so further speculation can be put to rest.

  133. Ann# ~ Mar 21, 2011 at 12:56 pm
    “Instead of all this confirmation bias and the he said/he said, and all the subjective interpretations, why not suggest and/or allow Dean Byrd and Francis Collins to address each other regarding this issue, come to a written determination what the truth is, and then let them mutually share that with the rest of us.”
    In all the time I’ve followed NARTH, I have never seen them publish/post a retraction. Certainly not of the form: “whoops sorry we made a mistake/mis-interpreted something.” At best, they would removed the page and not say anything about it.

  134. Instead of all this confirmation bias and the he said/he said, and all the subjective interpretations, why not suggest and/or allow Dean Byrd and Francis Collins to address each other regarding this issue, come to a written determination what the truth is, and then let them mutually share that with the rest of us.

  135. Timothy,

    I am, however, giving definition and example to a word and, more importantly, the concept behind it.

    Yes you are, finally. Colored by your perspective, of course. Rather than dropping word bombs for the last 2 years, you are finally talking in detail about what you mean by such words.
    Anti-gay, Anti-abortion, Anti-american, Choice, Anti-tax, Anti-union, Anti-government. It is the propagandist who uses such phrases…please take your place next to Bahati and Sempa when you talk like that. Your goals are the same…to intimidate and marginalize rather than persuade and discuss.
    That has been the issue all along, Timothy. But you know that too, and I know that you are only using the blunt instrument on others that was first used on you.

  136. Well, my team lost (Ohio State).
    This thread is so convoluted and toxic in places that I can’t begin to tease it out.
    The simple fact is that NARTH refuses to accept the word of the Director of the NIH about his own writing. I didn’t raise the issue again. Dave Roberts at XGW did not raise the issue again. NARTH did with their strange little article.
    Enough.
    Please everyone, go have a nice weekend and try again later.

  137. Eddy,
    Calling someone “pathetic” is the kind of thing I expect people to say when they’ve lost the war of ideas. Its name calling, pure and simple.
    Carol,

    Hey, Eddy! (Sometimes, you just gotta laugh!!),

    Now there is something we can agree on!

  138. Ann, hey, thanks. I too appreciate Eddy’s comments. Those of others as well.
    BTW, maybe I can sneak this in on this thread–I have been meaning to give this link to you but I’d have to find on what thread to post it, and that would take a lot of searching.
    You asked either Evan or Drowssap if they had seen any studies/research on those who have been blind since birth and attractions. This is an interesting read from a while back. It doesn’t address sexual orientation, but I suppose the researcher could expand his sample the next time around. The results certainly point to at least some level of “instinctive” idea of what is attractive.
    http://www.nytimes.com/2010/04/18/magazine/18fob-Bergner-t.html?_r=1&adxnnl=1&adxnnlx=1301112677-aar9gAcCbKUJoemj+fBsgw

  139. 1.causing or evoking pity, sympathetic sadness, sorrow, etc.; pitiful
    2. affecting or moving the feelings.
    3. pertaining to or caused by the feelings.
    Jayhuck,
    Other than the word ‘pitiful’ at the end of line one, ‘pathetic’ doesn’t strike me as ‘stooping to a new depth’. Can you elaborate?

  140. Carole,
    On my way to settle in for the evening and just wanted to say I am grateful that Eddy, who I admire and respect, spoke up to challenge what was being said in response to your comments. I appreciate what you write and it seems to always make me sit up straight and pay close attention 😀

  141. Carole,
    I think you proved you could stoop to just about any level required when you called Timothy “pathetic”. Thank goodness for your rational and tempered dialogue. LOL

  142. Carole,

    What I do know is you are only about discourse for a very, very short while, as long as no one says something with which you disagree. When that happens, you go into flame-throwing mode. Whether that’s because you have a hair-trigger temper or because you find it comforting or because you think it somehow effective, I don’t know.

    I think you might be projecting just a little. You’ve proven that you’re very adept at flame-throwing.

  143. It just doesn’t get any better with you, Timothy. Just doesn’t.
    I wrote a lengthy post (Mar 24, 7:11) questioning the ultimate wisdom/efficacy of the use of “heterosexistm” heterosexism” and then proceeded to point out the danger of equating one’s a contentment with one’s orientation as “feeling superior.” I said

    , We straights value our heterosexuality as a trait (when actually forced to think about it) and given a choice, would surely claim it as our strong preference. We do indeed see it as preferred over its “opposite”–homosexuality.
    I am sure you understand that. I feel I can safely conclude that many (maybe most?) gays who comment here value their homosexuality and given a choice, would claim it as preferred over its opposite- -heterosexuality. I know there are some who are gay who would prefer not to be. It is not a preference as a trait for themselves.

    From that, your conclusion of what I had said?

    And you have articulated how heterosexism is experienced very well. it is the constant underlying presumption that straight is intrinsically better. Always. For you, for your offspring, for your neighbors, for your grocery clerk, for your customers, for your second-cousin twice removed that you’ve never met.

    Now, however, you wish to avoid talking about that, and concentrate on my reference to family in my second post to offer it up as proof, evidence of my heterosexism. Seems I can only think of myself in terms of family and you in terms of S-E-X. You can do better than that. Or should I not expect more from you? Oh, are you a homosexist? A heterophobe? An anti-hetero? A sexist? Anti-mother? Sexistheterophobic?
    And this:

    You are actually angry, Carole, that I don’t agree with you that I’m inferior. You may want to reconsider that view; there are a lot of historical examples of this presumption, but none of them ended well

    You prove my point here, once again. You want to draw that conclusion. You have chosen to believe that. Well, wait….you may not believe it at all. Perhaps you are convinced heterosexists surround you; perhaps you pimp the notion as a strategy.
    What I do know is you are only about discourse for a very, very short while, as long as no one says something with which you disagree. When that happens, you go into flame-throwing mode. Whether that’s because you have a hair-trigger temper or because you find it comforting or because you think it somehow effective, I don’t know.
    This goes nowhere.

  144. Actually, Timothy, I once walked up to a nun and said “And YOU call yourself a ‘Daughter of CHARITY?” when I witnessed her treat another student abominably.
    But as to the rest of your comment to me:
    I’m dismayed that you can’t see it. You’ve come on gangbusters in at least three comments now. Two directed at David B, one directed at Carole. In all three of them, you weren’t a fellow blogger…you were JUDGE. You declared what you found them guilty of…you entertained NO possibility (and still don’t) that you could be misreading or over-reacting…and once you pronounced your judgement you went sailing off on a rant.
    I laughed when you said to David B. that you don’t personally attack people.

    So no, Carole, I don’t want you to be unhappy with your orientation. I just want you to treat it – and others – responsibly.

    Uh…if you say you want her to do this, you’re actually accusing her of treating ‘it–and others–irresponsibly. Based on your judgement of her words. (Most of us admit that dialoguing with strangers, in writing rather than face to face, on difficult subjects can breed misunderstanding. But you left no room for the fact that you might have misunderstood. You pronounced the judgement I cited.

    I’m not “accusing” you of feeling superior. You have pretty much already staked out your position. It’s certainly not missing from this paragraph.

    After Carole explained for the second or third time ‘difference’ rather than ‘superiority’, you seem to craftily call her out as either a liar or deluded here. You’re actually good with these kinds of ‘what the heck did he just say’ statements. You put ‘accusing’ in quotes which gives a bit of inflection to it…then you follow with ‘you have pretty much…’ and ‘it’s certainly not missing…’. So, if you weren’t trying to say “I’m not accusing you…you accuse yourself” then you might want to work on your word skills because that’s certainly what came across.

    You are not evolutionarily driven or biologically compelled to see gay people as inferior.

    Would you need to say this if you weren’t directly inferring that she does see gay people as inferior? (We’re back to ‘deluded’ or ‘liar’ on that one.)

    And I hope and believe that you are the sort of person who would reject rather than embrace racist or other hate-based impulses. You have chosen to believe such impulses to be wrong.
    It is within your ability to do the same for your views about gay people.
    If you choose.

    She has it within her ability, does she? If she chooses? Meaning it’s not yet in her experience…meaning that currently she has racist and other hate-based impulses towards gay people. Yeah, Timothy, you don’t resort to calling names, you assassinate a person’s character all from your interpretation of their written words.

  145. Teresa,

    Here’s the nub of the issue. Heterosexuals shouldn’t have to have a litmus test to marry. It’s how society operates. Families are the basic building block of society. Heterosexuals get to marry; just because of every factor they bring to building, maintaining, growing a society.

    You make the assumption that all married heterosexual couples have kids, or even want to have kids. They do not, yet they are allowed to marry. And what of every factor that gay people and gay families bring to every factor of building, maintaining and growing a society?

    We, homosexuals, are not equal to heterosexuals in this capacity. And, btw, neither are single heterosexuals equal in this capacity. That’s why through the years, single people have often felt left out in social settings. It’s just the way it is.

    I think you may have missed my ramblings about equality and individuals and groups. Many minority groups are not equal to other groups or even to the one group that is seen as the majority. That doesn’t mean, however, that gay couples don’t deserve to be treated equally under the law. Marriage is about more than promulgation of the species, and understanding that gay couples do, in increasing numbers, have children, its hard to find any reason to exclude them from the institution.

    Everyone on the planet has issues with feeling not as good as, at certain times. It’s part of the human condition. But, we shouldn’t take those feelings and try to upset, corrupt, and ultimately destroy social cohesion.

    I think you confuse trying to corrupt and destroy social cohesion with a minority group asking to be treated equally under the law. Again, these same arguments harken back to arguments used to deny so many minority groups equal status. I find it surprising to see you using them. There is absolutely no evidence that gay marriage, if that is what we are talking about and it seems to be, corrupts or ultimately destroys social cohesion. Although I have to admit, I’m not entirely certain what you mean by the term.

  146. If you will please kindly point out where I said similar things about you, I will happily and readily apologize, if I have not already done so.

    No need to – you have already apologized and it will always be appreciated. Your comment to David Blakeslee reminded me of when I would say the same things to you for years. I would like to say I am sorry to you for bringing it up – it was unneccessary for me to do so and I guess, in some way, is an indicator that past hurts take awhile to forget, even if forgiven. I am sorry Timothy for revisiting something that your apology adequately took care of.

  147. Concomitant with civil rights, comes responsibility. Responsibility for one’s own actions within the limits of one’s own space. Walking down the road of compassion, sympathy, empathy for our neighbors; doesn’t mean being complicit in bad behavior, or excusing irresponsibility.

    That is true.
    However, implicit in this thought is the presumption that gay people are, in whole, seeking rights without responsibility. Or that such efforts are either irresponsible or bad behavior. I do not think that is the case.
    Sure there are always some who want what they want and damn anyone else. But it is my belief that most gay people – and especially those most involved in the marriage movement – truly believe that equality is not only better for them but better for society.
    If I believed that marriage equality would result in the destabilization of the institution or in the disruption of social cohesion, I would oppose the effort. It isn’t that I just don’t care about such arguments, it is that I see them as lacking in any validity.
    And that is where the supporters of Proposition 8 had their downfall.
    For the very first time in court, their arguments were actually considered. Not as rhetoric, but actually given an opportunity to illustrate some evidence to support their views. They could not.

  148. Ann,
    If you will please kindly point out where I said similar things about you, I will happily and readily apologize, if I have not already done so.
    And as it is late on a Friday I don’t readily recollect your efforts to have me stop the abuse and bullying techniques that I have inflicted on you for years. It might also be helpful to direct me to such efforts so that I can be reminded.

  149. Jayhuck,

    From a “purely” social view, or is this a social view that is colored by your religion? I’m curious

    My view is colored by many factors: age, common sense, biology, and I’m a Christian.

    However, heterosexuals did not have to pass some litmus test in order to be found worthy of marriage. Homosexuals in the same way do not have to prove themselves in any way to be found deserving of this type of equality.

    Here’s the nub of the issue. Heterosexuals shouldn’t have to have a litmus test to marry. It’s how society operates. Families are the basic building block of society. Heterosexuals get to marry; just because of every factor they bring to building, maintaining, growing a society.
    We, homosexuals, are not equal to heterosexuals in this capacity. And, btw, neither are single heterosexuals equal in this capacity. That’s why through the years, single people have often felt left out in social settings. It’s just the way it is.
    Everyone on the planet has issues with feeling not as good as, at certain times. It’s part of the human condition. But, we shouldn’t take those feelings and try to upset, corrupt, and ultimately destroy social cohesion.

    I think you could find similar attitudes directed at black people, or people of any other minority fighting for their place at the table.

    Now, here’s a hot button issue, if there ever was one. Concomitant with civil rights, comes responsibility. Responsibility for one’s own actions within the limits of one’s own space. Walking down the road of compassion, sympathy, empathy for our neighbors; doesn’t mean being complicit in bad behavior, or excusing irresponsibility.
    Jayhuck, we’re all products of our environment, but we don’t have to be victims of it.

  150. David,
    The magazines and other news sources which reported false characterizations about Dr. Collins views did not retract those statements because you are mean.

  151. You will absolutely not want to hear this. You may deny it. Nevertheless, it is true.
    David, you personally engage in abuse towards me. Not my view, not my perspectives, but me. You do so in hurtful and demeaning ways. You do so when I’m here and evidently you do so when I have not even read the site in weeks.
    It has become a pattern. You justify it by imagining that I do as attack people personally as well. I don’t. And even if I did, that would still not take away from the fact that you are engaging in a pattern of abuse.

    Timothy,
    Your comment reminds me of my efforts to have you stop the abuse and bullying techniques you inflicted on me for years.

  152. Teresa,
    I don’t find your views outlandish.
    Each of us finds our own worth. Mine is different, but I can’t fault you for having views not to foreign to views I once held.
    And I think there could be valid arguments that would exclude same-sex couples from marriage recognition. You probably could articulate several.
    However such arguments tend not to fare well when applied sweepingly or to people as a class. When we go from some to many to all, then it becomes a matter of arguing that the murderer on death row and his pen pal are entitled, by merit of their heterosexuality, to marriage rights that are denied to the most upstanding, committed, and socially valuable same-sex couple, because of their homosexuality.
    If we are to apply legal (or even social) restrictions on people because of who they are, we should be able to explain the burdens we are imposing in terms that actually apply to them. To say “children raised by their biological parents do better” may be an argument that has strong emotional appeal, but how does it apply to the man on death row who murdered children or to the lesbians that are raising children who were not wanted by their biological parents.
    If the line we draw does not reflect the purpose that we are espousing for drawing the line, then it is not a valid line.

  153. I spent hours and hours painstakingly writing various publications that repeated NARTH’s version of Dr. Collins, or repeated what had been further distorted by another party and then repeated again. One single publication, The Baptist Press of all things, made the correction. And then only because Bob Stith seemed to be a reasonable guy.

    David Roberts,
    Did you ever share this information on this blog?
    I’m also wondering if the people at the publications you wrote to, and who chose not to respond, are aware of the other side of you who writes here. If so, they are aware of your unwillingness to retract an inaccuracy or distortion you have made when it has been brought to your attantion. Your propensity for becoming sarcastic and resort to bullying when challenged or called out for inaccuracies is becoming your reputation. If you stopped all this ineffective posturing, perhaps what you say would be taken seriously. Asking someone else to do what you are unwilling to do does not bode well for credibility or integrity. If they know this side of you, which has nothing to do with being gay or straight, then that might be just one reason they chose not to respond to all your hard work.

  154. Eddy,

    Oh, Timothy, what an amazing and non-stop judge you are!

    I’m just curious. Is this the way that you begin conversations with people outside this blogsite? I do hope that I am more courteous to you and apologize if I am not.
    But as to your comment, I disagree. I do not think that I saw a “this v. that” comparison where Carole only intended to share her own happiness. I just can’t come to the same conclusion as you based on the context of her comment.
    If you reread the entire paragraph that Carole wrote, I think that you will agree that there is a pattern in which Carole cast her sexual orientation in terms of children and grandchildren, love and family. This was not a matter of “you prefer yours and I prefer mine.”
    And I think that if you read her entire comment, it is consistent. As she put in her final salvo

    You want what biology can’t deliver–or you want straight to lie to you.

  155. OK, so they are about the same but *should* be better. Fair enough. It is bewildering why they are so bad considering that the facts are generally in their favor.

    What facts are “generally” in NARTH’s favor? The facts certainly don’t favor the “father/son alienation” hypothesis that NARTH fervently clings to as the primary basis for explaining male homosexuality.
    To be fair, the facts also don’t favor a single “gay gene” etiology that some uninformed gay activists continue to parrot. So when NARTH is up against a scientifically-illiterate activist who’s talking about a “gay gene,” and NARTH is saying that there’s almost certainly no such thing as a “gay gene,” then in that particular argument the facts do happen to favor NARTH.
    But the scientific community as a whole does not expect to find a “gay gene” and is considering any number of etiologies for homosexuality, while NARTH remains stubbornly loyal to the “aloof father” idea, despite its lack of predictive power.
    For example, I’m not aware of any studies that have showed elevated rates of homosexuality among the sons of Navy men, despite the obvious fact that the career demands of Navy fathers mean that they’re often totally absent from the household for long months at a time during their sons’ crucial toddler years, and that this is peculiarly true of the Navy (compared with the other services) even during peacetime. NARTH claims that the a failure to bond with dad during years 2-4 is especially likely to contribute to male homosexuality, so if there’s truth to this, we might expect to see more homosexuality among sons of military fathers, and perhaps particularly among male “Navy brats.”

    Do you think there’s any chance they could re-brand and start over? I suspect most of the key people would need to be different to gain any credibility. I’d also like to see them become even more secular while welcoming the spiritual where it makes sense.

    Oh, geez… I hate to disappoint you, Notpreston, but NARTH is not going to become “more secular”, because NARTH’s entire raison d’etre is to produce quasi-scientific talking points for folks who have a theological beef with homosexuality.

  156. Teresa,

    From a purely social view, in my opinion only, yes.

    From a “purely” social view, or is this a social view that is colored by your religion? I’m curious

    Here’s where we mix up respect for each individual with an “I’m entitled to what you have” mentality. I’m a homosexual. I don’t think I’m entitled to be ‘married’ in the sense society understands it. I think as an individual, and not as a class, I should be able to keep a job if I’m performing adequately, and not be fired simply because I’m a homosexual.

    I see a great deal of this attitude in people who don’t support marriage equality for gay people. They view gay people as those who feel they are entitled to something, not that they are people who wish to be treated equally under the law. I think you could find similar attitudes directed at black people, or people of any other minority fighting for their place at the table.
    As a homosexual I don’t feel I am necessarily entitled to anything. However, heterosexuals did not have to pass some litmus test in order to be found worthy of marriage. Homosexuals in the same way do not have to prove themselves in any way to be found deserving of this type of equality.

    So, we’re left with the question is heterosexuality better than homosexuality?

    That really depends on what we mean by “better”. If the only definition of better involves procreation then I suppose you could answer the question with a yes. But there are several heterosexual couples out there who cannot conceive children. Do you feel they are less somehow than other heterosexuals. You logic seems to dictate that that is true, at least when it comes to furthering the species.

  157. Anti-gay, Anti-abortion, Anti-american, Choice, Anti-tax, Anti-union, Anti-government. It is the propagandist who uses such phrases…please take your place next to Bahati and Sempa when you talk like that. Your goals are the same…to intimidate and marginalize rather than persuade and discuss.
    That has been the issue all along, Timothy. But you know that too, and I know that you are only using the blunt instrument on others that was first used on you.

    David, it is not my desire to use offensive of propagandist language.
    As I have said repeatedly – and say again now – I am amenable to switching to a word that you find to contain less baggage. I use “heterosexist” (and anti-gay and anti-abortion and anti-tax, etc.) because these words and terms have specific, easily understood, shared meaning. But if another word that you find less offensive is proffered, I can use it in replacement.
    However, I am not amenable to having ideas, thoughts, and concepts removed from consideration.
    And objecting to the words used to discuss an idea because we may fear or be uncomfortable with the idea is certainly not admirable. I very much hope that hasn’t happened.

  158. There’s another aspect to this, which is the idea that I (we) deserve exactly what some other person or group has … I’m (we’re) entitled to have what you have. Where does justice leave off, and become simply an exercise in envy, or worse yet thuggery: personally and socially. And, what makes matters worse, I (we) want what you have without doing what you did to get it.

    This quote could easily apply to many things we talk about on this blog and I was just curious what you meant by it.

    Jayhuck,
    Yes, this quote can apply to many things that we talk about on this blog; and, at the social level, even more. I don’t believe in ‘equality’ as a standard or implicit of/in anything; unless, we mean mediocrity in everything. So, here’s my take as a homosexual:
    Heterosexual is the normative. It’s what makes the world run at its elementary level. Nothing being equal, heterosexual trumps homosexual. Society has a vested interest in perpetuating itself; and, protecting that perpetuation.
    So, we’re left with the question is heterosexuality better than homosexuality? From a purely social view, in my opinion only, yes. However, there’s another question sitting right along side the first one, which is: are heterosexuals better than homosexuals? Person by person, the answer, again in my opinion, is no … simply because being human has intrinsic qualities of worth and dignity applicable to each one of us.
    Here’s where we mix up respect for each individual with an “I’m entitled to what you have” mentality. I’m a homosexual. I don’t think I’m entitled to be ‘married’ in the sense society understands it. I think as an individual, and not as a class, I should be able to keep a job if I’m performing adequately, and not be fired simply because I’m a homosexual.
    I think you see the difference. I know this Comment is not going to “warm the cockles” of too many hearts on this Blog; but, at the end of the day, these are simply my opinions. Mmm, maybe not just opinions, but beliefs born of much thought and experience.
    So, have at it.

  159. Yes, you continued with the language of “perferring” but it suddenly became very clear what you considered to be the parameters of such preferences when you contrasted the two “preferences”:
    you prefer your homosexuality.
    verses
    I liked falling in love, getting pregnant, being pregnant, having kids, grandkids.

    Oh, Timothy, what an amazing and non-stop judge you are! Isn’t it even remotely possible that Carole decided that she didn’t know enough about your homosexuality to elaborate? Or that if she did try to elaborate, you or someone else would immediately jump on some piece that she didn’t guess just right. So she said “your homosexuality” –which you should have a clear understanding of–and then gave more details about what she enjoyed about her own.
    David Roberts–
    It seems you missed my point. Go figure. I tried to focus on why we don’t just swallow whole what you feed us–or what Warren feeds us. So we ask questions trying to explore some of the backstory…only to have you (especially in the case of Ann) get downright rude. (‘sweetie’, ‘how passive-aggressive of you’, ‘haven’t you been paying attention’, etc, etc, ad nauseum.) And, to demonstrate that sometimes what you say is ‘tinged’ and isn’t exactly true, I brought in examples from the topic links. Your version: “I simply asked questions”….the reality version: your questions were preceded and followed by commentary and opinion. In that commentary you played the now infamous ‘gay victim’ trump card. This you added to your gushing praise for Collins, your self-proclaimed altruism and your personal summary on the evils of NARTH. If you can stand behind your statement “I simply asked questions”, it only indicates more why we shouldn’t just swallow whole what we read here or what we’re told to believe.
    And yes, we could take those other steps…we could chase down Collins but why is that necessary when you’re right here? Isn’t it logical that we start here…where the topic was brought to our attention and where one of the principles is actually in the conversation? You claim (and I tend to agree with you) that ‘this stuff has been hashed to death repeatedly’. Gotta ask yourself then what the fascination is that you and Warren have with dead horses? If it’s really been ‘hashed to death’, why isn’t it dead? Could it be that this blogsite aspires to be something more than a blogsite? More than discussion? Is the blogsite trying to be a vehicle of public pressure against NARTH. Gee, we’ve hashed it to death but NARTH won’t back off…let’s keep hashing and see if we can’t MAKE them.

  160. David Blakeslee
    I am going to say something that is due. For a very long time I’ve ignored this, but as it is becoming a matter of constancy, I have to say something.
    You will absolutely not want to hear this. You may deny it. Nevertheless, it is true.
    David, you personally engage in abuse towards me. Not my view, not my perspectives, but me. You do so in hurtful and demeaning ways. You do so when I’m here and evidently you do so when I have not even read the site in weeks.
    It has become a pattern. You justify it by imagining that I do as attack people personally as well. I don’t. And even if I did, that would still not take away from the fact that you are engaging in a pattern of abuse.
    I am now asking you to please stop.

  161. Teresa,
    Howdy. I’ve been away all day but came across this post of yours and was wondering if you would mind clarifying what you mean:

    There’s another aspect to this, which is the idea that I (we) deserve exactly what some other person or group has … I’m (we’re) entitled to have what you have. Where does justice leave off, and become simply an exercise in envy, or worse yet thuggery: personally and socially. And, what makes matters worse, I (we) want what you have without doing what you did to get it.

    This quote could easily apply to many things we talk about on this blog and I was just curious what you meant by it.
    Carole,
    For the record, I think you incorrectly read into statements made by others, something I’ve been guilty of as well so I don’t mean to come across as if I’m casting stones. By saying this I also don’t mean to condone the snarky comments that have been made. Like David said, sometimes its difficult not to make such comments on this thread. The blogosphere fails us at times when it comes to having truly meaningful conversations on such complex and emotionally-charged issues. I personally believe that if we were discussing this face to face we wouldn’t have most of the problems we do here.

  162. carole,
    I’ll approach this from the perspective that underneath all that, uhhh… passion… you really do want to understand my perspective.

    Do you want me to prefer to be gay, Timothy? Will you only be happy if straights want to be gay? Yes , straights want to be straight. For themselves. For their offspring (which leads to more offspring). Other than that, most of us don’t give a damn. My cousin Vinny? Who cares? He’s not going to give me grandchildren nor great grandchildren. Ah, shoot me, Tim. I am a product of eons of evolution both biologically and psychogically (the two are, as you know, intertwined). But, you don’t like that evolution? You wish me not to prefer my heterosexuality? Well, shoot me, then, because I do prefer it, just as, I think, you prefer your homosexuality. I liked falling in love, getting pregnant, being pregnant, having kids, grandkids.

    Look here at what you said, Carole. You started with the question of whether one should be happy with one’s orientation, and ended in a whole different place. Yes, you continued with the language of “perferring” but it suddenly became very clear what you considered to be the parameters of such preferences when you contrasted the two “preferences”:

    you prefer your homosexuality.

    verses

    I liked falling in love, getting pregnant, being pregnant, having kids, grandkids.

    This illustrates that you see straight folks in terms of love and family. But when speaking of gay people, this contrast only sees gay people in terms of their sexuality.
    That, Carole, is what I’m trying to communicate to you and others here. The attitude and worldview that diminishes the humanity of a person and sees them only in terms of sex can easily justify any treatment of such people. If someone disapproves of their sexuality – and they are seen only in terms o their sexuality – then there isn’t even a space for conversation about love and family.
    So no, Carole, I don’t want you to be unhappy with your orientation. I just want you to treat it – and others – responsibly.
    I’m white. (Well, actually, I am a beige guy who is extremely tired of the question, “what is your ethnicity”, but I still fall into the “white” category.) And I am a man. And I am educated. And happen to be lucky enough to fall a bit above the middle on the attraction scale.
    And every one of those characteristics comes with advantages. I do get better service in a store, I do get a pass for minor infractions, I do get the presumption of innocence that would not be automatically given to a black guy or hispanic girl or homely white-trash kid. That isn’t a matter of arrogance, it’s just reality.
    Maybe it’s no big formal thing. Maybe it’s just the restaurant bathroom key that suddenly is “missing” or the condescending tone that “explains” things in terms “they can understand” or the casual mention that you have to drive extra careful through Koreatown.
    But how i respond to these privileged that were doled out to me by accident of birth is up to me. I can enjoy them and pretend that they don’t exist and become irate and punitive when they are pointed out to me – ala 1950’s Strom Thurmond – or I can try to be sensitive and aware. Yeah, maybe I can’t heal society, but we each choose whether or not to consciously contribute to the problem.

    When you say “intrinsically better” I guess that’s your way of accusing me and others like me of feeling superior? Right? Well, heterosexuality is certainly “better” for propagating the species. My telling you that I am glad I am heterosexual assures you that I feel superior to you, right? My God, you really do want to be a victim. You really do want to see yourself as put upon by the fates. “Oh, world, why me? Why me? I am a sufferer!”
    That’s just pathetic.

    I’m not “accusing” you of feeling superior. You have pretty much already staked out your position. It’s certainly not missing from this paragraph.
    Now you can believe that your heterosexuality (love, family, etc.) is certainly better than my homosexuality (sex) if you like. But I’m perplexed at your irate indignation when I don’t just ‘accept that my trait is not preferred’, know my station, and not annoy my betters.
    You are actually angry, Carole, that I don’t agree with you that I’m inferior. You may want to reconsider that view; there are a lot of historical examples of this presumption, but none of them ended well.
    But, though I’m sure you know this, my point here isn’t that you should want to not be heterosexual. Nor that you should feel some shame or burden for being heterosexual. Nothing I’ve said should lead you to that conclusion.
    Nor am I wanting to “call names.” I’m not here to say “Carole’s heterosexist, na na na na na nahh” (And can we all please stop with the ‘don’t call me names’ tactic when we want to shut down a topic?)
    I have no desire to demean you. Truly.
    But I do want to bring to your attention that inequality does exist. And to remind you that you do get to choose how you will respond when people point out that inequality exists.
    You are not evolutionarily driven or biologically compelled to see gay people as inferior. Or certainly no more than your evolutionary and biological compulsions to despise or demean people of other races, the handicapped, those more wealthy or less wealthy, or people who were raised with different religious, political, or social views. (Even our evolutionary and biological impulses toward people with red hair can be overcome. Imagine!)
    And I hope and believe that you are the sort of person who would reject rather than embrace racist or other hate-based impulses. You have chosen to believe such impulses to be wrong.
    It is within your ability to do the same for your views about gay people.
    If you choose.

  163. Well, my team lost (Ohio State).
    This thread is so convoluted and toxic in places that I can’t begin to tease it out.
    The simple fact is that NARTH refuses to accept the word of the Director of the NIH about his own writing. I didn’t raise the issue again. Dave Roberts at XGW did not raise the issue again. NARTH did with their strange little article.
    Enough.
    Please everyone, go have a nice weekend and try again later.

  164. And if you read the articles in Exodus’ FAQ, you see they’re NOT just saying “oh, we believe gay people are great and all, WE just don’t practice gayness.” It’s MUCH more political and insidious than that.

  165. It was a PRIVATE CORPORATION with a “PRIVATE TERMS OF SERVICE.”
    Heterosupremacists like Exodus are on the same line as White Supremacists, and Apple doesn’t allow THOSE apps.
    Denigrating an entire group of people as Exodus does, with its articles about how gay teens bring trouble upon themselves and you can’t be “whole” if you’re gay and you’re “broken” because of your inherent sexualiy is as unacceptable as when Stormfront.org says Jews control the media and are selfish and greedy because they’re Jewish.
    That’s why apple removed the app. NOT because it wanted to silence free speech. Because it violated their TOS.
    Exodus still has a website. Stormfront.org is still up and running. Neither have a problem getting their rhetoric out to the world.

  166. Ann, hey, thanks. I too appreciate Eddy’s comments. Those of others as well.
    BTW, maybe I can sneak this in on this thread–I have been meaning to give this link to you but I’d have to find on what thread to post it, and that would take a lot of searching.
    You asked either Evan or Drowssap if they had seen any studies/research on those who have been blind since birth and attractions. This is an interesting read from a while back. It doesn’t address sexual orientation, but I suppose the researcher could expand his sample the next time around. The results certainly point to at least some level of “instinctive” idea of what is attractive.
    http://www.nytimes.com/2010/04/18/magazine/18fob-Bergner-t.html?_r=1&adxnnl=1&adxnnlx=1301112677-aar9gAcCbKUJoemj+fBsgw

  167. 1.causing or evoking pity, sympathetic sadness, sorrow, etc.; pitiful
    2. affecting or moving the feelings.
    3. pertaining to or caused by the feelings.
    Jayhuck,
    Other than the word ‘pitiful’ at the end of line one, ‘pathetic’ doesn’t strike me as ‘stooping to a new depth’. Can you elaborate?

  168. 1.causing or evoking pity, sympathetic sadness, sorrow, etc.; pitiful
    2. affecting or moving the feelings.
    3. pertaining to or caused by the feelings.
    Jayhuck,
    Other than the word ‘pitiful’ at the end of line one, ‘pathetic’ doesn’t strike me as ‘stooping to a new depth’. Can you elaborate?

  169. Carole,
    On my way to settle in for the evening and just wanted to say I am grateful that Eddy, who I admire and respect, spoke up to challenge what was being said in response to your comments. I appreciate what you write and it seems to always make me sit up straight and pay close attention 😀

  170. but then again, apple was intimidated,

    Ann, I don’t think Apple was intimidated. I believe it is a Corporation with a history of pro-gay ideology. The apps don’t necessarily get the scrutiny up-front. In Apple’s world it was, probably, an oversight.
    BTW, I thought the TWO (Truth Wins Out) was uncalled for. Exodus should have been able to keep their app. If we take this stuff far enough, none of us will be able to say much of anything, anywhere without being labeled as hate-speech, discriminatory, racist, sexist, homophobes, etc.
    Homosexuals are not a monolith, as I think Eddy pointed out about other groups ?. Some of us find this gay-activism way over-the-top. Just my opinion, however, as a homosexual.

  171. Carole,
    I think you proved you could stoop to just about any level required when you called Timothy “pathetic”. Thank goodness for your rational and tempered dialogue. LOL

  172. Juan,

    The Uganada thing is not that interesting to me.

    Think about how you feel about NARTH being criticized.
    Then imagine what it is like to be in a country that identifies as 90% Christian, like Uganda, but criminalizes homosexual behavior…and someone in the parliment is writing legislation to create a death sentence for it.
    If you are a Christian and act out on your sexual urges you could be criminally punished. But even worse, you could be identified by some vigilante group and beaten or killed “for God and Country.”
    It is pretty terrifying.

  173. It is an interesting question.
    Jones and Yarhouse are the only ones I know of.
    And this is despite Christian Affiliated APA approved graduate schools at Fuller, George Fox, Rosemead, Pepperdine…and that is the west coast.

  174. It just doesn’t get any better with you, Timothy. Just doesn’t.
    I wrote a lengthy post (Mar 24, 7:11) questioning the ultimate wisdom/efficacy of the use of “heterosexistm” heterosexism” and then proceeded to point out the danger of equating one’s a contentment with one’s orientation as “feeling superior.” I said

    , We straights value our heterosexuality as a trait (when actually forced to think about it) and given a choice, would surely claim it as our strong preference. We do indeed see it as preferred over its “opposite”–homosexuality.
    I am sure you understand that. I feel I can safely conclude that many (maybe most?) gays who comment here value their homosexuality and given a choice, would claim it as preferred over its opposite- -heterosexuality. I know there are some who are gay who would prefer not to be. It is not a preference as a trait for themselves.

    From that, your conclusion of what I had said?

    And you have articulated how heterosexism is experienced very well. it is the constant underlying presumption that straight is intrinsically better. Always. For you, for your offspring, for your neighbors, for your grocery clerk, for your customers, for your second-cousin twice removed that you’ve never met.

    Now, however, you wish to avoid talking about that, and concentrate on my reference to family in my second post to offer it up as proof, evidence of my heterosexism. Seems I can only think of myself in terms of family and you in terms of S-E-X. You can do better than that. Or should I not expect more from you? Oh, are you a homosexist? A heterophobe? An anti-hetero? A sexist? Anti-mother? Sexistheterophobic?
    And this:

    You are actually angry, Carole, that I don’t agree with you that I’m inferior. You may want to reconsider that view; there are a lot of historical examples of this presumption, but none of them ended well

    You prove my point here, once again. You want to draw that conclusion. You have chosen to believe that. Well, wait….you may not believe it at all. Perhaps you are convinced heterosexists surround you; perhaps you pimp the notion as a strategy.
    What I do know is you are only about discourse for a very, very short while, as long as no one says something with which you disagree. When that happens, you go into flame-throwing mode. Whether that’s because you have a hair-trigger temper or because you find it comforting or because you think it somehow effective, I don’t know.
    This goes nowhere.

  175. It just doesn’t get any better with you, Timothy. Just doesn’t.
    I wrote a lengthy post (Mar 24, 7:11) questioning the ultimate wisdom/efficacy of the use of “heterosexistm” heterosexism” and then proceeded to point out the danger of equating one’s a contentment with one’s orientation as “feeling superior.” I said

    , We straights value our heterosexuality as a trait (when actually forced to think about it) and given a choice, would surely claim it as our strong preference. We do indeed see it as preferred over its “opposite”–homosexuality.
    I am sure you understand that. I feel I can safely conclude that many (maybe most?) gays who comment here value their homosexuality and given a choice, would claim it as preferred over its opposite- -heterosexuality. I know there are some who are gay who would prefer not to be. It is not a preference as a trait for themselves.

    From that, your conclusion of what I had said?

    And you have articulated how heterosexism is experienced very well. it is the constant underlying presumption that straight is intrinsically better. Always. For you, for your offspring, for your neighbors, for your grocery clerk, for your customers, for your second-cousin twice removed that you’ve never met.

    Now, however, you wish to avoid talking about that, and concentrate on my reference to family in my second post to offer it up as proof, evidence of my heterosexism. Seems I can only think of myself in terms of family and you in terms of S-E-X. You can do better than that. Or should I not expect more from you? Oh, are you a homosexist? A heterophobe? An anti-hetero? A sexist? Anti-mother? Sexistheterophobic?
    And this:

    You are actually angry, Carole, that I don’t agree with you that I’m inferior. You may want to reconsider that view; there are a lot of historical examples of this presumption, but none of them ended well

    You prove my point here, once again. You want to draw that conclusion. You have chosen to believe that. Well, wait….you may not believe it at all. Perhaps you are convinced heterosexists surround you; perhaps you pimp the notion as a strategy.
    What I do know is you are only about discourse for a very, very short while, as long as no one says something with which you disagree. When that happens, you go into flame-throwing mode. Whether that’s because you have a hair-trigger temper or because you find it comforting or because you think it somehow effective, I don’t know.
    This goes nowhere.

  176. I do think it is reasonable to ask, “Are Scientists intimidated by the GLBT advocacy groups?” And does this effect secular research on SSA?

    I hold scientists in the highest esteem and would be very disappointed if they were intimidated by glbt advocacy groups, but then again, apple was intimidated, so maybe it is a possibility. Is there any secular scientific research being done and, if so, what is the reasoning for doing it?

  177. I do think it is reasonable to ask, “Are Scientists intimidated by the GLBT advocacy groups?” And does this effect secular research on SSA?
    Spitzer and Bailey might comment on this. The reactions to their research was quite heated and personal.

  178. So, NARTH as a scientific organization is responsible to report factually on the science of SSA.
    They generally report on the science of SSA for those with unwanted Same Sex Attractions…and they do that in a way that tends to talk about “cures” (this is Joe’s word used numerous times in my professional relationship with him…I urged him to stop doing so in 2005). They also recommend treatments which are experiential in nature, rather than scientific (i.e. evidence based practice).
    …and they do that in a way that tends to highlight the negative consequences of acting on one’s Same Sex attractions
    …and they tend to do that in a way that overlooks healthy functioning associated with identifying with one’s Same Sex Attractions.
    I can go on with the preferential style…
    It is perfectly acceptable for a Political Advocacy Group to do this…and God Knows, people with unwanted SSA deserve a capable and strong advocacy group. Anyone?
    As they persist with the Scientific Organization label but behave in a Political Advocacy role, they undermine their credibility…and the credibility of those who seek care from them for their Unwanted SSA.

  179. With all due respect, Eddy, have you spent the time I have tracking down where that article has been used, by whom and for what? What I said is absolutely, totally, 100% accurate. And even if NARTH had thought I somehow hoodwinked this incredibly smart man into making statements he didn’t want to, why didn’t they just contact him and explain themselves? Or more importantly, maybe they did and Collins still didn’t agree?
    This stuff has been hashed to death repeatedly. There is no honest way to make NARTH an injured party here. Or at least, not injured from without. And I’ve learned from observation that you have a great skill for Argument by Attrition.
    I spent hours and hours painstakingly writing various publications that repeated NARTH’s version of Dr. Collins, or repeated what had been further distorted by another party and then repeated again. One single publication, The Baptist Press of all things, made the correction. And then only because Bob Stith seemed to be a reasonable guy.
    I’m out of patience on this, and I don’t want to get mean in my frustration, so I’m not going to keep trying on this one. What you are saying, Eddy, is definitely the NARTH narrative on the issue, and you are free to hold to it. As I said, NARTH exists only because of that kind of blind faith. Meanwhile, there is a consequence to it all.

  180. Dean Byrd and NARTH “ganged up on?” Seriously Ann, they have a much larger bully pulpit here than Warren or me or most anyone who has reported on them. They can and do say whatever they want — frequently, through multiple channels. No one stopped them from saying anything.

    As I said, this was my original perception and then added the following –
    I wrongly felt as though fairness was being withheld from Dean Byrd and Francis Collins and narth because of a misunderstanding that, if given the proper channels, could be cleared up. I had no way of knowing the inside information that you already knew.

    And let me say once, without sarcasm, the obvious. Your comments about Blakeslee’s rather mundane explanation were obviously, at least to me, just an attempt to rub everyone’s nose in it (i.e. it’s not you for still not getting it, it’s everyone else for not being nice enough to explain it like he did).

    My comments, at the time and afterward, thanking David Blakeslee for clarifying what was not included in the original post or subsequent comments, were sincere and appreciated. If someone else, including you, would have imparted the same substantive information, I would have thanked you too. You chose to respond to me in a whole different way and manner.

    It was quite plain that you didn’t suddenly “see the light” after all these years of painstakingly well written rebuttal and explanation by Warren — not to mention endless subsequent spoon-feeding of the data in the comments.

    Another assumption that you want to believe so you make it true – just has nothing to do with the truth. In my comment to Dr. Throckmorton and David Blakeslee, I addressed my thoughts and knowledge about narth. Those are the truth.

    So with all due respect, Ann, check the log in your own eye first. I’ll apologize for not simply dropping out of the thread, but the rest really is on you. I honestly don’t think you want to get it

    Ok, what is the log I have in my eye to check? What is really up to me? What is it I am supposed to “get”?

    because you are too invested somehow in what NARTH does.

    Another assumption that you are making that you want to be true but, unfortunately, it is not. Sorry if this is truth is inconvenient to your beliefs.

  181. A quote from David Roberts’ original article on the matter:

    I simply asked Dr. Collins questions and he answered after reading the original NARTH article himself.

    A paragraph of what David Roberts’ actually said to Dr. Collins in his first email:

    However, and this is the point I would like you to clarify–your words are being offered by such organizations to support their stand that those of us who have been attracted to the same sex romantically and physically since as long as we can remember, can reverse this attraction with a high degree of success (some even saying 100%) or that it can be prevented (heaping guilt on parents for whatever they must have done wrong). This is a conclusion which I do not think is supported by the facts–quite the contrary.

    I believe David honestly believes that he simply asked questions…but does anyone see a question in the paragraph I quoted? First we have the allegation that NARTH is using Collins quotes to support their stand on reversal of attraction with a high degree of success. NARTH did not speak at all to attraction reversal or success rates. Then the allegations of preventability and of heaping guilt on parents. NARTH did not speak to preventability in this article and I don’t recall a mention of parents at all.
    So, the truth is that David didn’t just simply ask questions. Like all of us, David has a tendency to minimize when it serves him and to exaggerate when it serves him. Because it’s a tendency for all of us, we come to a blogsite such as this and try to dig beyond the biases…NARTH’s, David’s, Warren’s,…heck, on a good day, even our own. 🙂 I honestly believe that that’s what Ann does. And I wince when the responses dodge the question and/or resort to personal attacks.
    In an earlier paragraph of David’s first email to Dr. Collins he made a claim that sounds as if he believes a homosexually-inclined individual has the right to live according to their personal beliefs and that he supports such individual rights. (Again, not keeping with ‘simply asked.) This certainly sounds as if he’s saying that if a person does believe it’s sin or ‘wrong for them’ then he supports them. Trouble is that I cannot find ANY evidence of this being true. I see the ongoing minimization of ex-gays and those who support them here; I witness the personal attacks. I see the efforts against NARTH and EXODUS…they seem more like attempts to point fingers, discredit and even ‘bring them down’ rather than efforts at correction.

  182. OK, so they are about the same but *should* be better. Fair enough. It is bewildering why they are so bad considering that the facts are generally in their favor.
    Do you think there’s any chance they could re-brand and start over? I suspect most of the key people would need to be different to gain any credibility. I’d also like to see them become even more secular while welcoming the spiritual where it makes sense.

  183. The Uganada thing is not that interesting to me.

    Quite frankly, you should be ashamed of yourself for that comment. These aren’t TV programs you are flipping through, they are people’s lives at stake, with multiple connections to places of power and faith.

    Also, I think there is a case to be made that Dr Francis menat what he wrote and was shamed by Wayne into back-pedaling.

    What does Wayne have to do with this? I’m not aware he was even in contact with Collins. And the only contact I’ve had with him has been posted multiple times and contains no “Jedi mind tricks” that one of the most brilliant geneticists in the world would fall helplessly in front of.
    The only thing to conclude here is that NARTH probably still exists at all because of people willing to ignore the preponderance of evidence against their credibility, and just like them for no good reason. Tell me how that makes sense?

  184. carole,
    I’ll approach this from the perspective that underneath all that, uhhh… passion… you really do want to understand my perspective.

    Do you want me to prefer to be gay, Timothy? Will you only be happy if straights want to be gay? Yes , straights want to be straight. For themselves. For their offspring (which leads to more offspring). Other than that, most of us don’t give a damn. My cousin Vinny? Who cares? He’s not going to give me grandchildren nor great grandchildren. Ah, shoot me, Tim. I am a product of eons of evolution both biologically and psychogically (the two are, as you know, intertwined). But, you don’t like that evolution? You wish me not to prefer my heterosexuality? Well, shoot me, then, because I do prefer it, just as, I think, you prefer your homosexuality. I liked falling in love, getting pregnant, being pregnant, having kids, grandkids.

    Look here at what you said, Carole. You started with the question of whether one should be happy with one’s orientation, and ended in a whole different place. Yes, you continued with the language of “perferring” but it suddenly became very clear what you considered to be the parameters of such preferences when you contrasted the two “preferences”:

    you prefer your homosexuality.

    verses

    I liked falling in love, getting pregnant, being pregnant, having kids, grandkids.

    This illustrates that you see straight folks in terms of love and family. But when speaking of gay people, this contrast only sees gay people in terms of their sexuality.
    That, Carole, is what I’m trying to communicate to you and others here. The attitude and worldview that diminishes the humanity of a person and sees them only in terms of sex can easily justify any treatment of such people. If someone disapproves of their sexuality – and they are seen only in terms o their sexuality – then there isn’t even a space for conversation about love and family.
    So no, Carole, I don’t want you to be unhappy with your orientation. I just want you to treat it – and others – responsibly.
    I’m white. (Well, actually, I am a beige guy who is extremely tired of the question, “what is your ethnicity”, but I still fall into the “white” category.) And I am a man. And I am educated. And happen to be lucky enough to fall a bit above the middle on the attraction scale.
    And every one of those characteristics comes with advantages. I do get better service in a store, I do get a pass for minor infractions, I do get the presumption of innocence that would not be automatically given to a black guy or hispanic girl or homely white-trash kid. That isn’t a matter of arrogance, it’s just reality.
    Maybe it’s no big formal thing. Maybe it’s just the restaurant bathroom key that suddenly is “missing” or the condescending tone that “explains” things in terms “they can understand” or the casual mention that you have to drive extra careful through Koreatown.
    But how i respond to these privileged that were doled out to me by accident of birth is up to me. I can enjoy them and pretend that they don’t exist and become irate and punitive when they are pointed out to me – ala 1950’s Strom Thurmond – or I can try to be sensitive and aware. Yeah, maybe I can’t heal society, but we each choose whether or not to consciously contribute to the problem.

    When you say “intrinsically better” I guess that’s your way of accusing me and others like me of feeling superior? Right? Well, heterosexuality is certainly “better” for propagating the species. My telling you that I am glad I am heterosexual assures you that I feel superior to you, right? My God, you really do want to be a victim. You really do want to see yourself as put upon by the fates. “Oh, world, why me? Why me? I am a sufferer!”
    That’s just pathetic.

    I’m not “accusing” you of feeling superior. You have pretty much already staked out your position. It’s certainly not missing from this paragraph.
    Now you can believe that your heterosexuality (love, family, etc.) is certainly better than my homosexuality (sex) if you like. But I’m perplexed at your irate indignation when I don’t just ‘accept that my trait is not preferred’, know my station, and not annoy my betters.
    You are actually angry, Carole, that I don’t agree with you that I’m inferior. You may want to reconsider that view; there are a lot of historical examples of this presumption, but none of them ended well.
    But, though I’m sure you know this, my point here isn’t that you should want to not be heterosexual. Nor that you should feel some shame or burden for being heterosexual. Nothing I’ve said should lead you to that conclusion.
    Nor am I wanting to “call names.” I’m not here to say “Carole’s heterosexist, na na na na na nahh” (And can we all please stop with the ‘don’t call me names’ tactic when we want to shut down a topic?)
    I have no desire to demean you. Truly.
    But I do want to bring to your attention that inequality does exist. And to remind you that you do get to choose how you will respond when people point out that inequality exists.
    You are not evolutionarily driven or biologically compelled to see gay people as inferior. Or certainly no more than your evolutionary and biological compulsions to despise or demean people of other races, the handicapped, those more wealthy or less wealthy, or people who were raised with different religious, political, or social views. (Even our evolutionary and biological impulses toward people with red hair can be overcome. Imagine!)
    And I hope and believe that you are the sort of person who would reject rather than embrace racist or other hate-based impulses. You have chosen to believe such impulses to be wrong.
    It is within your ability to do the same for your views about gay people.
    If you choose.

  185. Juan,
    Thanks for checking in, but,

    I don’t think NARTH is any worse than TWO, Exgaywatch, Box Turtle, and others.

    Eek!
    Narth, by purporting to be a scientific organization has to be 2-3 times as good as a couple of blogs and an advocacy group.
    They have the experts, the research and the ethical guidelines to do so.

  186. I read through Warren’s “Nature/Nurture” powerpoint and the two things that jumped out at me are 1) Bem’s explanation for how genes can play a role makes a lot of sense to me and 2) that gender noncomformity and same sex attraction may be very closely related. But is this another area where the gay influence is discouraging gender-affirmation?

  187. David, I think that’s being a little harsh on Ann. I also don’t understand why NARTH is entirely dismissed except for the fact that people disagree with them. They link to lots of information and make reasonable assessments on much of it.
    Warren’s dismissal of NARTH sounds more like what TWO or Box Turtle would say, rather than a seemingly open-minded individual.

  188. Carole, those two longer posts were brilliant. Please keep it up.
    Ann, I’m with you on the NARTH confusion. NARTH has made a lot of dumb moves but I think a complete dismissal without even analyzing what they put forth is inappropriate. I don’t think NARTH is any worse than TWO, Exgaywatch, Box Turtle, and others. All use various argumentative tactics to support their positions.
    Also, I think there is a case to be made that Dr Francis menat what he wrote and was shamed by Wayne into back-pedaling. He only said he was disturbed that “special interest groups distort my scientific observations to make a point against homosexuality”. To me, this sounds like he was more concerned about how he appeared to the gay community than that he was actually mis-represented. There’s not much ambiguity in what he wrote in his book.
    Wayne did the exact same thing to Richard Dawkins where he got him to uncomfortably summarize on camera some of the unlikely evolutionary scenarios that might accomodate homosexuality. Wayne is very good at this.
    Basically, whenever Wayne is around, you have to be very careful about how you interpret what people say and write. Many, many people are very careful about how they present their views about homosexuality in public which may be very different from what they would say in private and actually believe. Trust me on that one!
    Warren and Ken, I actually think there was some very good material on this thread. I even think Timothy’s writings have been interesting even though I distinctly disagree. The Uganada thing is not that interesting to me.
    David B and Debbie have also made some really good points (and I’m probably missing others).

  189. I felt Dean Byrd and narth were being ganged up on and bullied (again), and not being given an opportunity to tell their side of the story – which I thought might hold some information that could cast a different light onto the information that was already known.

    A big reason this thread devolved into sarcasm is that it’s so difficult to respond to comments like these over and over without it. Dean Byrd and NARTH “ganged up on?” Seriously Ann, they have a much larger bully pulpit here than Warren or me or most anyone who has reported on them. They can and do say whatever they want — frequently, through multiple channels. No one stopped them from saying anything.
    And let me say once, without sarcasm, the obvious. Your comments about Blakeslee’s rather mundane explanation were obviously, at least to me, just an attempt to rub everyone’s nose in it (i.e. it’s not you for still not getting it, it’s everyone else for not being nice enough to explain it like he did). It was quite plain that you didn’t suddenly “see the light” after all these years of painstakingly well written rebuttal and explanation by Warren — not to mention endless subsequent spoon-feeding of the data in the comments.
    So with all due respect, Ann, check the log in your own eye first. I’ll apologize for not simply dropping out of the thread, but the rest really is on you. I honestly don’t think you want to get it, because you are too invested somehow in what NARTH does.

  190. See if there where posts you might have worded differently. Posts that might have detracted from the discussion rather than helped it.

    Ken,
    I am sure you are correct and apologize if this was the case.

  191. Teresa & Carole,
    I share your sentiments about Elizabeth Taylor. She certainly lived a very interesting life and, I too, feel the passing of an era.
    Teresa,
    I also share you thoughts on Carole and Debbie – two insightful, honest, and intelligent women who I admire and have learned much from.

  192. Ann# ~ Mar 25, 2011 at 2:31 pm
    I would suggest Ann that your re-read your comments in this thread. See if there where posts you might have worded differently. Posts that might have detracted from the discussion rather than helped it.

  193. but then again, apple was intimidated,

    Ann, I don’t think Apple was intimidated. I believe it is a Corporation with a history of pro-gay ideology. The apps don’t necessarily get the scrutiny up-front. In Apple’s world it was, probably, an oversight.
    BTW, I thought the TWO (Truth Wins Out) was uncalled for. Exodus should have been able to keep their app. If we take this stuff far enough, none of us will be able to say much of anything, anywhere without being labeled as hate-speech, discriminatory, racist, sexist, homophobes, etc.
    Homosexuals are not a monolith, as I think Eddy pointed out about other groups ?. Some of us find this gay-activism way over-the-top. Just my opinion, however, as a homosexual.

  194. I do think it is reasonable to ask, “Are Scientists intimidated by the GLBT advocacy groups?” And does this effect secular research on SSA?

    I hold scientists in the highest esteem and would be very disappointed if they were intimidated by glbt advocacy groups, but then again, apple was intimidated, so maybe it is a possibility. Is there any secular scientific research being done and, if so, what is the reasoning for doing it?

  195. David Blakeslee, Dr. Throckmorton,
    Much has been made about my inability or unwillingness to understand Narth and the things they are accused of doing. I do not have the same vested interest as some do to get back at narth for a real or incorrectly perceived wrong or to find fault with them to advance another position. I was perplexed that so much effort was expended with posts, comments, etc. about what seemed to say the same thing year after year. I thought if narth, Dean Byrd, etc. could be told that there was a discrepancy to what Francis Collins said and how narth interpreted it, they would then understand the error and change it. If they did not agree with the correction and understood something else from Francis Collins originally (prior to the correction), then they could take it up with him and come to a mutual understanding of what was meant and how to interpret it. I have seen too many times where a statement was made and then Wayne Besen or someone else intervened and then the statement changed or was altered or modified. I’m not sure what he tells them, however, it is a concern of mine. I think Apple is the latest example of that. I did not know if the same thing happened with Francis Collins and thought the right and fair and honest thing to do would be to ask the two people involved to come to a mutual understanding. Perhaps it is my simple mind but I thought that was better than how it was being handled here on this blog. My questions were sincere as were my suggestions. It wasn’t until David Blakeslee answered them in such a simple, succinct, and direct manner, without sarcasm, without personal attacks, and without contempt, rather, with the information I needed to understand that narth was aware and attempts were made to rectify their stance, and they were unwilling to do so. That is all I needed to know. So simple.
    Dr. Throckmorton – You said it was hard for any regular reader to not know about narth and the things they do. Knowing about narth from your perspective does not mean a reader has to hold the same interest or form the same opinion. I cannot say I hold the same negative feelings or knowledge about them that you and many others here have. I do know, however, when I see an injustice or unfairness, and that was my perception, when I read the original post. I felt Dean Byrd and narth were being ganged up on and bullied (again), and not being given an opportunity to tell their side of the story – which I thought might hold some information that could cast a different light onto the information that was already known. I must confess, I value fairness – without it, I fear for all of us as a society. I wrongly felt as though fairness was being withheld from Dean Byrd and Francis Collins and narth because of a misunderstanding that, if given the proper channels, could be cleared up. I had no way of knowing the inside information that you already knew.
    I appreciate David Blakeslee for being fair to me and transcending all the other things people were saying by just answering my questions. It made all the difference in how I understood what really is such a simple matter of right and wrong.

  196. Thanks Nick C,
    Here is the money quote:

    Speaking of gay teens, Truth Wins Out claimed that a key rationale for the petition was “stopping a virulently anti-gay organization from peddling false speech at the expense of vulnerable LGBT youth.” This has an ironically familiar ring to it. The right is forever saying it is teens and children who should be protected from gay content. With this precedent established those Christian activists can now make the exact same case in opposing any gay apps they don’t like.

  197. OK, so they are about the same but *should* be better. Fair enough. It is bewildering why they are so bad considering that the facts are generally in their favor.
    Do you think there’s any chance they could re-brand and start over? I suspect most of the key people would need to be different to gain any credibility. I’d also like to see them become even more secular while welcoming the spiritual where it makes sense.

  198. @ Jayhuck

    Warren,
    Is this some of the “brain evidence” for orientation that you mentioned above:
    Brain Scans Provide Evidence that Sexual Orientation is Biological
    I would be interested to read up on the other evidence that is out there. Would you be able to provide some links to the research itself or articles discussing the findings?

    I haven’t seen a response. You may want to go here
    http://wthrockmorton.com/catholic-university-powerpoint-presentation/

  199. Juan,
    Thanks for checking in, but,

    I don’t think NARTH is any worse than TWO, Exgaywatch, Box Turtle, and others.

    Eek!
    Narth, by purporting to be a scientific organization has to be 2-3 times as good as a couple of blogs and an advocacy group.
    They have the experts, the research and the ethical guidelines to do so.

  200. I read through Warren’s “Nature/Nurture” powerpoint and the two things that jumped out at me are 1) Bem’s explanation for how genes can play a role makes a lot of sense to me and 2) that gender noncomformity and same sex attraction may be very closely related. But is this another area where the gay influence is discouraging gender-affirmation?

  201. David, I think that’s being a little harsh on Ann. I also don’t understand why NARTH is entirely dismissed except for the fact that people disagree with them. They link to lots of information and make reasonable assessments on much of it.
    Warren’s dismissal of NARTH sounds more like what TWO or Box Turtle would say, rather than a seemingly open-minded individual.

  202. Carole, those two longer posts were brilliant. Please keep it up.
    Ann, I’m with you on the NARTH confusion. NARTH has made a lot of dumb moves but I think a complete dismissal without even analyzing what they put forth is inappropriate. I don’t think NARTH is any worse than TWO, Exgaywatch, Box Turtle, and others. All use various argumentative tactics to support their positions.
    Also, I think there is a case to be made that Dr Francis menat what he wrote and was shamed by Wayne into back-pedaling. He only said he was disturbed that “special interest groups distort my scientific observations to make a point against homosexuality”. To me, this sounds like he was more concerned about how he appeared to the gay community than that he was actually mis-represented. There’s not much ambiguity in what he wrote in his book.
    Wayne did the exact same thing to Richard Dawkins where he got him to uncomfortably summarize on camera some of the unlikely evolutionary scenarios that might accomodate homosexuality. Wayne is very good at this.
    Basically, whenever Wayne is around, you have to be very careful about how you interpret what people say and write. Many, many people are very careful about how they present their views about homosexuality in public which may be very different from what they would say in private and actually believe. Trust me on that one!
    Warren and Ken, I actually think there was some very good material on this thread. I even think Timothy’s writings have been interesting even though I distinctly disagree. The Uganada thing is not that interesting to me.
    David B and Debbie have also made some really good points (and I’m probably missing others).

  203. I felt Dean Byrd and narth were being ganged up on and bullied (again), and not being given an opportunity to tell their side of the story – which I thought might hold some information that could cast a different light onto the information that was already known.

    A big reason this thread devolved into sarcasm is that it’s so difficult to respond to comments like these over and over without it. Dean Byrd and NARTH “ganged up on?” Seriously Ann, they have a much larger bully pulpit here than Warren or me or most anyone who has reported on them. They can and do say whatever they want — frequently, through multiple channels. No one stopped them from saying anything.
    And let me say once, without sarcasm, the obvious. Your comments about Blakeslee’s rather mundane explanation were obviously, at least to me, just an attempt to rub everyone’s nose in it (i.e. it’s not you for still not getting it, it’s everyone else for not being nice enough to explain it like he did). It was quite plain that you didn’t suddenly “see the light” after all these years of painstakingly well written rebuttal and explanation by Warren — not to mention endless subsequent spoon-feeding of the data in the comments.
    So with all due respect, Ann, check the log in your own eye first. I’ll apologize for not simply dropping out of the thread, but the rest really is on you. I honestly don’t think you want to get it, because you are too invested somehow in what NARTH does.

  204. See if there where posts you might have worded differently. Posts that might have detracted from the discussion rather than helped it.

    Ken,
    I am sure you are correct and apologize if this was the case.

  205. Teresa & Carole,
    I share your sentiments about Elizabeth Taylor. She certainly lived a very interesting life and, I too, feel the passing of an era.
    Teresa,
    I also share you thoughts on Carole and Debbie – two insightful, honest, and intelligent women who I admire and have learned much from.

  206. Ann# ~ Mar 25, 2011 at 2:31 pm
    I would suggest Ann that your re-read your comments in this thread. See if there where posts you might have worded differently. Posts that might have detracted from the discussion rather than helped it.

  207. David Blakeslee, Dr. Throckmorton,
    Much has been made about my inability or unwillingness to understand Narth and the things they are accused of doing. I do not have the same vested interest as some do to get back at narth for a real or incorrectly perceived wrong or to find fault with them to advance another position. I was perplexed that so much effort was expended with posts, comments, etc. about what seemed to say the same thing year after year. I thought if narth, Dean Byrd, etc. could be told that there was a discrepancy to what Francis Collins said and how narth interpreted it, they would then understand the error and change it. If they did not agree with the correction and understood something else from Francis Collins originally (prior to the correction), then they could take it up with him and come to a mutual understanding of what was meant and how to interpret it. I have seen too many times where a statement was made and then Wayne Besen or someone else intervened and then the statement changed or was altered or modified. I’m not sure what he tells them, however, it is a concern of mine. I think Apple is the latest example of that. I did not know if the same thing happened with Francis Collins and thought the right and fair and honest thing to do would be to ask the two people involved to come to a mutual understanding. Perhaps it is my simple mind but I thought that was better than how it was being handled here on this blog. My questions were sincere as were my suggestions. It wasn’t until David Blakeslee answered them in such a simple, succinct, and direct manner, without sarcasm, without personal attacks, and without contempt, rather, with the information I needed to understand that narth was aware and attempts were made to rectify their stance, and they were unwilling to do so. That is all I needed to know. So simple.
    Dr. Throckmorton – You said it was hard for any regular reader to not know about narth and the things they do. Knowing about narth from your perspective does not mean a reader has to hold the same interest or form the same opinion. I cannot say I hold the same negative feelings or knowledge about them that you and many others here have. I do know, however, when I see an injustice or unfairness, and that was my perception, when I read the original post. I felt Dean Byrd and narth were being ganged up on and bullied (again), and not being given an opportunity to tell their side of the story – which I thought might hold some information that could cast a different light onto the information that was already known. I must confess, I value fairness – without it, I fear for all of us as a society. I wrongly felt as though fairness was being withheld from Dean Byrd and Francis Collins and narth because of a misunderstanding that, if given the proper channels, could be cleared up. I had no way of knowing the inside information that you already knew.
    I appreciate David Blakeslee for being fair to me and transcending all the other things people were saying by just answering my questions. It made all the difference in how I understood what really is such a simple matter of right and wrong.

  208. Timothy,

    I am, however, giving definition and example to a word and, more importantly, the concept behind it.

    Yes you are, finally. Colored by your perspective, of course. Rather than dropping word bombs for the last 2 years, you are finally talking in detail about what you mean by such words.
    Anti-gay, Anti-abortion, Anti-american, Choice, Anti-tax, Anti-union, Anti-government. It is the propagandist who uses such phrases…please take your place next to Bahati and Sempa when you talk like that. Your goals are the same…to intimidate and marginalize rather than persuade and discuss.
    That has been the issue all along, Timothy. But you know that too, and I know that you are only using the blunt instrument on others that was first used on you.

  209. Thanks Nick C,
    Here is the money quote:

    Speaking of gay teens, Truth Wins Out claimed that a key rationale for the petition was “stopping a virulently anti-gay organization from peddling false speech at the expense of vulnerable LGBT youth.” This has an ironically familiar ring to it. The right is forever saying it is teens and children who should be protected from gay content. With this precedent established those Christian activists can now make the exact same case in opposing any gay apps they don’t like.

  210. @ Jayhuck

    Warren,
    Is this some of the “brain evidence” for orientation that you mentioned above:
    Brain Scans Provide Evidence that Sexual Orientation is Biological
    I would be interested to read up on the other evidence that is out there. Would you be able to provide some links to the research itself or articles discussing the findings?

    I haven’t seen a response. You may want to go here
    http://wthrockmorton.com/catholic-university-powerpoint-presentation/

  211. Carole,
    Before leaving this Thread, I’d like to thank you for interjecting your thoughts on being a victim; or giving way to self-pity. Thanks, at least from me, for bringing us up-short on this. I know I can fall into this ‘character defect’, which is a pernicious, corrosive state of mind that leads to no good, personally and for groups that indulge in it.
    There’s another aspect to this, which is the idea that I (we) deserve exactly what some other person or group has … I’m (we’re) entitled to have what you have. Where does justice leave off, and become simply an exercise in envy, or worse yet thuggery: personally and socially. And, what makes matters worse, I (we) want what you have without doing what you did to get it.
    Carole, you brought up a very important point in all this. Much to ponder on, in all this. Debbie has brought this up before; but, at the time I wasn’t up to hearing it.
    Thank you for your insight and courage.

  212. Carole,
    I’m still off-topic; so, back to Elizabeth Taylor. She seemed to typify in her life, a prescient look at where our ‘culture’ was headed. Watching her private life, which we were ‘invited’ to do, was like reading the tea leaves for our society, at large. Leave it to Beaver couldn’t survive the glamor, the chutzpah of an ‘edgy’ life.
    Yes, I agree, Carole, that off-stage, she:

    All in all, she seems to have been a person who, off the set, was seen as a loving, sensitive, giving person.

  213. Ken said:

    And now it has degraded into a 6th grade level of “conversation.” Keep in mind it only takes one side in such a situation to break the feed-back loop and prevent it from escalating (or rather degrading further).

    Agreed. I have let this off topic and snarky stuff go on because I am really much more interested in other topics – such as the developments in Uganda – but I agree with ken, if you have nothing much to add, just move on to another topic.

  214. LIttle did I know that a poster would come along who really does feel that unless and until heteros somehow don’t prefer heterosexuality, there can be no…justice?

    Speaking of using someone’s words in a way they did not intend. NARTH could use someone like you, carole. Your reaction does kinda prove a point, however.

  215. Teresa,
    I feel her best performance (of those I saw) was in Whose Afraid of Virginia Woolfe.
    Yes, the passing of an era–Liz has always been around since I’ve been alive.
    When I was a very small kid I recall her face and that of Eddie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds plastered all over the movie mags that lined the shelves of the Rexall Pharmacy my mother visited. While she busied herself at the front desk, I looked at all the faces on all those mags–there were scores of them every month in those days. As a kid, I came to view Liz as a home wrecker, I suppose. That was how she was portrayed at that time.
    I do recall my mother and older sister telling me it was very sad that she had lost her husband, the one “she really loved” in a tragic accident. In that era she had been portrayed as the damsel who lost her true love.
    Then, I recall her bouts with alcohol, painkillers, maybe both. I remember the drunken shouting matches with Burton and how the magazines began tailing them, shooting them from afar with their telephoto lenses as the paparazzi do today. In fact, to me it seems Liz and Burton were in the vanguard of the modern day cele photo frenzies.
    She seems to be the first HW star that I equated with addiction–I guess I was at that age when I paid attention to such stuff. Sad that today we think of so many of them equated with addiction. Celebrity is usually not a productive state of being.
    All in all, she seems to have been a person who, off the set, was seen as a loving, sensitive, giving person.

  216. Throbert,
    Your input is appreciated, but my involvement in this detour began with my post that said that while there was truth to the fact that some went around feeling “superior” to gays and that because that was so the term “heterosexist” made some sense, there was a down side to its use.
    I concluded by stating,

    So, if a person sees the trait as something they don’t prefer or don’t view as neutral for themselves (or for their offspring) it seems we heterosexuals are doomed to being called “heterosexists” by a subgroup of a subgroup.
    It’ll accomplish nothing. In fact, it will be counter-productive

    .
    I hold to that. However, I don’t mind at all that someone expresses the opposite view. What I do find very irritating is a response that perverts my words, (

    it is the constant underlying presumption that straight is intrinsically better. Always. For you, for your offspring, for your neighbors, for your grocery clerk, for your customers, for your second-cousin twice removed that you’ve never met.

    Never said that.
    And the second thing I find irritating is the assumption that I (or anyone else on this blog) cannot possibly arrive at reasonable, fair conclusion unless I have had the exact same experience):

    said from the point of view of someone who has never had the experience ….

    LIttle did I know that a poster would come along who really does feel that unless and until heteros somehow don’t prefer heterosexuality, there can be no…justice?
    Now, to your points about homosexual acts and the law and SCOTUS and Timothy and cutting him slack for all he has suffered. Yours are well-made points, even if a bit hystrionic in that in most states, and in most places in most states, no two consenting adults would have faced legal actions, even with laws still on the books(there are many, many unbelievable laws on the books)–still, points well-taken.
    You have suggested that while women have faced similar treatment, their treatment is not analogous to that of gays and that therefore, I ought to cut Timothy some slack. (BTW, I called his attitude “pathetic”- I hold to that as well).
    I left the comment about women general, Throbert, for a reason. Suffice it to say that many people have stories of mistreatment; some have horrendous stories, and yes, their mistreatment occurred because of their inclusion in a subgroup of society, a subgroup that was not “protected” as others were…but the details aren’t necessary. “Who’s been the greater victim?” Peeing contests serve no purpose. That’s the whole point.

  217. Ken said:

    And now it has degraded into a 6th grade level of “conversation.” Keep in mind it only takes one side in such a situation to break the feed-back loop and prevent it from escalating (or rather degrading further).

    Agreed. I have let this off topic and snarky stuff go on because I am really much more interested in other topics – such as the developments in Uganda – but I agree with ken, if you have nothing much to add, just move on to another topic.

  218. And now it has degraded into a 6th grade level of “conversation.”

    I’m trying my best to elevate the conversation, ken!
    Now, tell me — if you could be reincarnated, would you choose:
    a. Klingon (Q’omho sapiens aggressivus)
    b. bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus)
    c. human (Homo sapiens)
    d. gay male human (Homo sapiens arsenokoiticus)
    e. none of the above?

  219. Teresa, that’s a little hard to do on a blog about politics, religion and sex! With this bunch, sometimes you have to laugh to keep from crying. It wasn’t always that way.

  220. I remember when I was young (pre-Civil War), the old folks were adamant about not talking about politics, religion, or sex. The grey-hairs had much wisdom, as witness how this thread has gone a wee-bit wild.
    Could we change the subject? I felt quite sad yesterday when I heard that Elizabeth Taylor had passed away. I have no reason why, particularly. I never saw many of her movies; and, the few I saw, I didn’t think she was a great actress. Somehow, I think it was the passing of an era … the passing of a person larger than life; someone of my time. Perhaps, it’s less about the person; and, more about mourning the passing of years.
    OK, back to the regularly scheduled Terminator Series.

  221. And, since you know nothing else about my life, you have assumed that I am “someone who has never had” experience x or experience y, experiences that might in some way parallel your own, even if they had nothing to do with sexuality. So much for assumptions. The pity party is for you alone or those who share your particular reason for seeking pity.

    Carole, I appreciate your point that your experiences as a woman making her way in male-dominated or male-centric culture are in some ways analogous to the experiences of a homosexual man making his way in a hetero-dominated, hetero-centric world.
    However, I would point out that Bowers v. Hardwick (in which the Supreme Court affirmed that fully consensual sex between two adult men could be criminalized, on no better grounds than that for as long as anyone could remember, most people found man-to-man sex distasteful) is only 25 years old.
    I was a teenager in high school when the SCOTUS said that it was okay for the state to arrest consenting adult homosexuals. And although I was still several years away from “coming out” to my family and close friends (a process that spanned the ages of 20-22), as a 15-year-old I was nonetheless outraged and stunned by Bowers. I was like, “How dare the Justices of the Supreme Court sully the American legal system with brazen logical fallacies, such as by arguing ad populum and ad antiquitatem!?!” (And yes, I knew terms like “ad populum” and “ad antiquitatem” at age 15, thanks to high-school Latin and lots of Isaac Asimov essays about logic.)
    If I’d been heterosexual but just as intellectually precocious, I still would’ve been outraged and stunned in a budding-teen-libertarian way, but on top of my sense that there was an irrational injustice behind the decision, I also felt personally stung, because I was quite aware of my own desires to engage in lots and lots of “oral sodomy” with Indiana Jones and Magnum P.I.!
    Anyway, Carole, my point is that it’s rather harsh and insensitive for you to call Timothy “pathetic”, because it was only 8 years ago that the SCOTUS (by a 6-3 decision, in Lawrence v. Texas) finally got around to affirming that — oops, wait a minute, on second thought, the State should not have the power to arrest people for consensual homosexuality.
    Thus, you should cut the man some slack.

  222. Sorry to disappoint you–your repeated meme of “Christians are the big bad boys against us” doesn’t apply. The secular do visit Warren’s blog, in case you didn’t know.

    Oh yeah, that’s my meme alright. Christians are the root of all evil, say it all the time. I’ve been to that secular store, but their ad hominems are dry and tasteless, the others are heavenly 😉
    Ken – I would have one with 8th grade, but 6th will work.

  223. David,
    Sorry to disappoint you–your repeated meme of “Christians are the big bad boys against us” doesn’t apply. The secular do visit Warren’s blog, in case you didn’t know.

  224. And now it has degraded into a 6th grade level of “conversation.” Keep in mind it only takes one side in such a situation to break the feed-back loop and prevent it from escalating (or rather degrading further).

  225. FWIW, there are several people who post here often and some much less often who offer intelligent discourse, ask interesting questions, can disagree w/out resorting to ad hominems, and a blog owner who offers a great, intriguing mix of topics.

    The articles are good, the discourse not so much anymore. You should try some ad hominems, they are great with milk and sugar for breakfast — yummy! I buy them at a little Christian store down the street. But then I see you have already developed a taste for them.

  226. I don’t think you want to be perceived as someone who is emotionally undisciplined and/or intentionally tries to hurt others. Please don’t do it anymore.

    Why gosh no, honeybunch. And if I had any idea what you’all were talking about, I might even consider spending a few minutes over here bashing my head against the proverbial brick wall.
    But glad to see you are still thinking of me 🙂

  227. @David,

    FWIW, Carole, you missed the point by several orbits. But that shrill screed is certainly telling. You might want to find another blog that suits you better.

    Ah, the kind of thing David and Eddy were talking about.
    FWIW, there are several people who post here often and some much less often who offer intelligent discourse, ask interesting questions, can disagree w/out resorting to ad hominems, and a blog owner who offers a great, intriguing mix of topics.
    Could be there’s something wrong with your ears, but in any case, you can always choose to not read my posts if the tune isn’t to your liking.

  228. Oh Ann, still at it and my comment was so far back. Your passive-aggressiveness is so cute! I’m just glad to know you still care.

    I do. Speaking of passive-aggressiveness, it is interesting to note that you did not answer my initial simple question directed to you, and yet you chose to respond, passive-aggressively to me via a comment I made to another person. I am coming to believe that you do not take challenges very well, nor like to be called out for your inaccuracies. By the way, none of this has to do with being gay or straight, or equal rights, or anything else – just the method you are choosing to interact with another. It is very unbecoming and others take notice. I don’t think you want to be perceived as someone who is emotionally undisciplined and/or intentionally tries to hurt others. Please don’t do it anymore.

  229. FWIW, Carole, you missed the point by several orbits. But that shrill screed is certainly telling. You might want to find another blog that suits you better.

  230. Teresa,
    I feel her best performance (of those I saw) was in Whose Afraid of Virginia Woolfe.
    Yes, the passing of an era–Liz has always been around since I’ve been alive.
    When I was a very small kid I recall her face and that of Eddie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds plastered all over the movie mags that lined the shelves of the Rexall Pharmacy my mother visited. While she busied herself at the front desk, I looked at all the faces on all those mags–there were scores of them every month in those days. As a kid, I came to view Liz as a home wrecker, I suppose. That was how she was portrayed at that time.
    I do recall my mother and older sister telling me it was very sad that she had lost her husband, the one “she really loved” in a tragic accident. In that era she had been portrayed as the damsel who lost her true love.
    Then, I recall her bouts with alcohol, painkillers, maybe both. I remember the drunken shouting matches with Burton and how the magazines began tailing them, shooting them from afar with their telephoto lenses as the paparazzi do today. In fact, to me it seems Liz and Burton were in the vanguard of the modern day cele photo frenzies.
    She seems to be the first HW star that I equated with addiction–I guess I was at that age when I paid attention to such stuff. Sad that today we think of so many of them equated with addiction. Celebrity is usually not a productive state of being.
    All in all, she seems to have been a person who, off the set, was seen as a loving, sensitive, giving person.

  231. Throbert,
    Your input is appreciated, but my involvement in this detour began with my post that said that while there was truth to the fact that some went around feeling “superior” to gays and that because that was so the term “heterosexist” made some sense, there was a down side to its use.
    I concluded by stating,

    So, if a person sees the trait as something they don’t prefer or don’t view as neutral for themselves (or for their offspring) it seems we heterosexuals are doomed to being called “heterosexists” by a subgroup of a subgroup.
    It’ll accomplish nothing. In fact, it will be counter-productive

    .
    I hold to that. However, I don’t mind at all that someone expresses the opposite view. What I do find very irritating is a response that perverts my words, (

    it is the constant underlying presumption that straight is intrinsically better. Always. For you, for your offspring, for your neighbors, for your grocery clerk, for your customers, for your second-cousin twice removed that you’ve never met.

    Never said that.
    And the second thing I find irritating is the assumption that I (or anyone else on this blog) cannot possibly arrive at reasonable, fair conclusion unless I have had the exact same experience):

    said from the point of view of someone who has never had the experience ….

    LIttle did I know that a poster would come along who really does feel that unless and until heteros somehow don’t prefer heterosexuality, there can be no…justice?
    Now, to your points about homosexual acts and the law and SCOTUS and Timothy and cutting him slack for all he has suffered. Yours are well-made points, even if a bit hystrionic in that in most states, and in most places in most states, no two consenting adults would have faced legal actions, even with laws still on the books(there are many, many unbelievable laws on the books)–still, points well-taken.
    You have suggested that while women have faced similar treatment, their treatment is not analogous to that of gays and that therefore, I ought to cut Timothy some slack. (BTW, I called his attitude “pathetic”- I hold to that as well).
    I left the comment about women general, Throbert, for a reason. Suffice it to say that many people have stories of mistreatment; some have horrendous stories, and yes, their mistreatment occurred because of their inclusion in a subgroup of society, a subgroup that was not “protected” as others were…but the details aren’t necessary. “Who’s been the greater victim?” Peeing contests serve no purpose. That’s the whole point.

  232. On the tendentious “Which is better?” and “Why would anyone choose to be gay?” questions, my response in the past has been this:
    I don’t personally subscribe to reincarnation, but suppose for the sake of discussion that someday I find myself in the hereafter and the Reincarnation Angel-Clerk says to me, “Guess what, sir or madam? Not only is reincarnation for reals, but we have pre-qualified you to live again in the demographic identity of your choosing! Male or female, brown or yellow or red or white, straight or bisexual or gay — it’s up to you if you act now!
    Well, although I have no memories of “choosing” homosexuality in this life, if the choice of reincarnation as a male homosexual were offered to me in the afterlife, I would strongly consider being “born gay” a second time around.
    P.S. Mind you, if we only got ONE chance for reincarnation, I might opt to be a woman rather than a man, regardless of orientation, just so I would have a better sense of how the other 50% of humanity lives. But if it turns out we can be reincarnated multiple times, then I would certainly pick the “male homosexual” option again from time to time, while also trying other identities.
    P.P.S. Actually, my FIRST choice for reincarnation would be “a Klingon of either sex, or the nearest analogue to Klingons in the real universe”; and if the Reincarnation Angel informed me that my options were restricted to lifeforms on this planet, then my SECOND choice would be “bottlenose dolphin.” But if neither of those was a menu choice and I had to be a human again, then I wouldn’t rule out being a homosexual Homo sapiens.

  233. Carol,

    When you say “intrinsically better” I guess that’s your way of accusing me and others like me of feeling superior? Right? Well, heterosexuality is certainly “better” for propagating the species. My telling you that I am glad I am heterosexual assures you that I feel superior to you, right? My God, you really do want to be a victim. You really do want to see yourself as put upon by the fates. “Oh, world, why me? Why me? I am a sufferer!”
    That’s just pathetic.

    Honestly, I don’t think that’s what Timothy was saying. I’ll let him jump in and address the issue, but I see what he is saying differently. This is an example of why I think trying to discuss things this in-depth, emotional and complex on a blog is so problematic.

  234. My drag name would be Minerva Huntington. ( First pet; street I grew up on) or Rusty Huntingdon if a male porn star. (First dog; street I grew up on)

    I especially like the “name of hometown” version, ’cause I was born in the capital of Thailand (really!), and what better name could there be for a gay male porn star than…
    Krung Thep Mahanakhon Amon Rattanakosin Mahinthara Yuthaya Mahadilok Phop Noppharat Ratchathani Burirom Udomratchaniwet Mahasathan Amon Phiman Awatan Sathit Sakkathattiya Witsanukam Prasit?
    😉
    P.S. For those who don’t feel like reading the wiki article, this is not one of those “Burma becoming Myanmar” post-colonial things. “Bangkok” and “Krung Thep” are both authentic Thai names for the city that go back centuries, but strictly speaking “Bangkok” was always a neighborhood / district / mini-city within the larger city of Krung Thep.

  235. Said from the point of view of someone who has never had the experience of ticking the “no I’m not f’ing married – you won’t let me” single box on every form he’s ever filled out.

    Didn’t take you long to claim the role of victim for yourself, Timothy. It’s supremely telling that since you know that I am a woman (and not a young one, at that) you have conveniently ignored that I belong to a group that has had the “kind of” experiences you refer to with your “no, I’m not f’ing married–you won’t…..”. And, since you know nothing else about my life, you have assumed that I am “someone who has never had” experience x or experience y, experiences that might in some way parallel your own, even if they had nothing to do with sexuality. So much for assumptions. The pity party is for you alone or those who share your particular reason for seeking pity.

    No, I’m not “stuck on” anything. But yes, heterosexism absolutely is all around us. Every day. Abundantly.
    And you have articulated how heterosexism is experienced very well. it is the constant underlying presumption that straight is intrinsically better. Always. For you, for your offspring, for your neighbors, for your grocery clerk, for your customers, for your second-cousin twice removed that you’ve never met.

    I wasn’t thinking of you at all when I wrote my comment, but your response sounds as if you really are the type of person I was suggesting when I said that there is a subgroup of gays who really are unable to accept that their trait is not preferred.
    Do you want me to prefer to be gay, Timothy? Will you only be happy if straights want to be gay? Yes , straights want to be straight. For themselves. For their offspring (which leads to more offspring). Other than that, most of us don’t give a damn. My cousin Vinny? Who cares? He’s not going to give me grandchildren nor great grandchildren. Ah, shoot me, Tim. I am a product of eons of evolution both biologically and psychogically (the two are, as you know, intertwined). But, you don’t like that evolution? You wish me not to prefer my heterosexuality? Well, shoot me, then, because I do prefer it, just as, I think, you prefer your homosexuality. I liked falling in love, getting pregnant, being pregnant, having kids, grandkids.
    When you say “intrinsically better” I guess that’s your way of accusing me and others like me of feeling superior? Right? Well, heterosexuality is certainly “better” for propagating the species. My telling you that I am glad I am heterosexual assures you that I feel superior to you, right? My God, you really do want to be a victim. You really do want to see yourself as put upon by the fates. “Oh, world, why me? Why me? I am a sufferer!”
    That’s just pathetic.
    It ain’t gonna happen–wanting us to want to be gay ain’t gonna happen. I never thought a guy like you who knows some science would be rolling around in this sticky tarpit of self- pity.
    Okay, so shoot me and those of my ilk: sexuality has allowed my genes to be passed on to the next generation. And, my reproductive drive coupled with my sexual orientation made conceiving those little gifts to the next generation a lot of fun–it wasn’t work, wasn’t distasteful, wasn’t misery. And my family life has been a joy. Does that tick you off somehow? That heterosexuality actually worked for me? For others? That’s it’s the way of the world? The majority? That you aren’t part of that majority? What you want on an emotional level is to wish away the biology that drives the rest of us. Can’t happen.
    Want to call me a heterosexist for preferring to be what I am and not caring that you are what you are? Go ahead. It’s just a word and you like name-calling.
    You want what biology can’t deliver–or you want straight to lie to you.

  236. Eddy,

    In future conversations, I hope we can recognize that ‘gays are just like straights’ is just a line…that there are real differences and it’s okay to explore them–even the differences that might be perceived as negative. Difference DOES NOT necessarily mean superiority or inferiority…just difference.

    If I haven’t said this enough in past threads I will say it again. There have been and always will be differences between individuals, groups etc. Differences do exist between minority groups whether they be AFrican American, Asian or Gay. I agree that differences don’t have to mean that one group feels superior or inferior.
    There are some gay people like some straight people, there are some who are not. I suppose it could be said there are some straight people who are more like gay people than others – whatever. I care more about equality under the law than I do about some idea that all people are like everyone else – that’s nonsense.

    Bullying–let’s lay ALL of that on the straights (and religious conservatives)…Bias and Bigotry–if the gays have it, it’s only because the straights created it. Intolerance–again the domain of the conservatives; ‘gay intolerance’ is merely a natural response. Judgementalism and Prejudice–that’s the straights…we gays are simply telling it like it is.

    I think gay people can be just as biased and intolerant as anyone else, however, I don’t know of any gay groups going around actively working to make sure straight people can’t marry – etc, etc… There are people in all minority groups who are intolerant, but I don’t think you can point to all of them and say that the intolerance most have had to fight against all their life doesn’t impact how they might speak against the majority which has maligned them.

  237. Timothy–
    Sometimes it isn’t all about you. I was reading this thread and was responding to Jayhuck’s comment re the ‘dumb breeders’. Your comments came in while I was composing mine.
    Don’t have the interest in pursuing anything further with you. I find your attitude extremely distasteful and abrasive. (And no, not referring to your comments to me but rather your exercising judgement on both David B. and Throbert.) There had been some semblance of actual conversation here and the tone changed dramatically from measured give and take to total bashing when you entered the scene. I’m simply not interested.

  238. Eddy,
    First – shame on you for the mental image of a porn starring someone named Minerva Huntington…. I now need to go scrub my eyes 😉
    But as for this, what thread are you reading?:

    I just brought up the possibility of homosexism and, of course, that notion was refuted (not well, BTW, but refuted nonetheless)

    I just said that it exists.

    Bullying–let’s lay ALL of that on the straights (and religious conservatives)…Bias and Bigotry–if the gays have it, it’s only because the straights created it. Intolerance–again the domain of the conservatives; ‘gay intolerance’ is merely a natural response. Judgementalism and Prejudice–that’s the straights…we gays are simply telling it like it is.

    Huh? No one said anything even remotely like that.

    In future conversations, I hope we can recognize that ‘gays are just like straights’ is just a line…that there are real differences and it’s okay to explore them–even the differences that might be perceived as negative.

    In future conversations, I hope we don’t rant about what we imagine others are saying. It makes it more “conversation” and less “mindless hateful rambing”.

    Difference DOES NOT necessarily mean superiority or inferiority…just difference.

    True. And there are differences, if not as a matter of attribute then at least as a matter of trend or social direction.
    And if you can discuss them without being defensive or turning it into “yeah, but gays are worse” then sure, let’s discuss them. I’m not sure this is the right thread for that, but it’s a conversation that can be had.
    If, however, it turns into a Laurie-Higgins-worthy litany of every negative stereotype or personal grievance, real or imagined, then I don’t really want to play that game.

  239. If you are stuck on equating “inferior” with “not preferred” and “superior” with “preferred” then you will see “heterosexists” and “heterosexism” all around you and that will always agitate you for you will feel marginalized, victimized and… inferior.

    I don’t totally disagree with this, but I would phrase it thusly:
    If you are stuck on getting more and larger donations from riled-up gay people, you will encourage them to see heterosexism as an omnipresent threat that is forever ready to marginalize and victimize gay people.
    Similarly, if you are stuck on getting more and larger donations from riled-up Christian conservatives, you will encourage them to see gay-rights activism as an omnipresent threat that is forever ready to marginalize and victimize Christian conservatives.
    (Not that there’s anything inherently wrong with fundraising and soliciting voluntary donations — but the issue of Job Security For Activists and Fund-Solicitors can take on a life of its own and corrupt the entire discussion.)

  240. Throbert…
    Just a thought… knee-jerk reactionism isn’t pretty in either liberal group-thinking or in “look at me, I’m not a liberal” snarkiness.
    Ooooh, I get it, you are independent and not defined by your sexuality. Well goodie for you. That makes you special.
    But I’m more impressed by those who articulate a position than I am by those who define themselves by what they are not (though it certainly feels better to ‘not be like him’ doesn’t it?). Do you believe what you believe because you’ve thought about it, or because it’s the opposite of what The Left believes?
    Oh, and though it probably hasn’t occurred to you… but I’m not a liberal either.

  241. This is a much better way to say it than
    They are essentially “heterosexual supremacists” in they eyes of society.
    Thank you for being fair and measuring your words so that they are accurate.

    Oh Ann, still at it and my comment was so far back. Your passive-aggressiveness is so cute! I’m just glad to know you still care.
    Carry on.

  242. Just my experience with the two, earlier with Timothy, lately with David R.
    Marriage as an institution is broken and somewhat corrupted. I have always argued that this first happened with heterosexuals.
    Trying to repair it, to have it return to a more conservative, well defined institution preceded the whole gay marriage debate.
    It has very little to do with heterosexism, or paternalism or any number of other “isms.”

    Well, it need not have anything to do with heterosexism. The discussion could start from a place of inclusion and look at the real meaning of marriage and how it interacts with the state. It could have established principles related to objecting priorities and determine how these impact and are impacted by religion or the state or the culture.
    It might even come to the conclusion that marriage ought only be granted to white Christian heterosexual couples in which the man holds title to all property. And that could be the conclusion based on reason and logic and a desire to do what is best for society. And it need not be a racist, heterosexist, paternalist decision.
    However, if your reason and logic and desire to do what is best doesn’t even consider gay people, then yes it is heterosexist. By definition.
    I think the problem, David, is that you very much want to hold on to values of heterosexual superiority but that you very much don’t like to have those values pointed out to you.
    Why don’t you just proudly say, “Yes, I’m a heterosexist. I presume that straight people should always be deferred to in every situation and I care nothing about how I impact the lives of gay people.” Because the alternative – holding to views but not liking what they say about you or their consequences to others – has got to be disconcerting.
    And you can hardly expect gay people to keep it secret from you when you are doing things or taking positions that make their daily living more difficult. If your feelings are hurt by being confronted with how you disadvantage others, it can hardly be the fault of those saying, “excuse me, can I be treated the way that you are treated for a while?”

    Timothy and David R see marriage rights for gays and lesbians through a different window than many on the conservative side do. They resort to a polarizing and inflammatory name-calling technique as a way to control and truncate the debate.

    Well, no. I’m not, for example, accusing you of resorting to to a polarizing and inflammatory name-calling technique as a way to control and truncate the debate. That would be impolite of me.
    I am, however, giving definition and example to a word and, more importantly, the concept behind it.
    I’m not at all trying to “truncate debate.” I am, however, trying to make you aware of something that you are very resistant to hearing: that decision which impact the live of gay people – especially those which impact gay people FAR MORE than heterosexual people – cannot be made without considering the people you impact.
    Listen to the debates, David. Those in favor of giving gay people the same treatment as heterosexuals talk in terms of the people they are impacting. Those who are not talk about other things: their kids, their church, their faith, their culture. They believe that the lives and the experiences of gay people simply aren’t as important as their own.
    Yes there are a few who rant about the “militant homosexual activists who are after our children.” The ones who hatefully rant every bogus claim about gay people that they can find on the web. Those folks are homophobes.
    But they are pretty few. And I’m not talking about them. I’m talking about the ones who oppose equality without even really considering who ends up suffering for their decision.
    And the word for believing that gay people don’t quite matter as much as real people, are inherently inferior, love all God’s children but wouldn’t want to be one of ‘them’, is heterosexism.

    They have a good friend in Wayne Besen, who models for them how to talk in this debate.

    LOL
    Considering that Wayne once referred to me as a “typing monkey” for disagreeing with one of his positions, I hardly think that he models for me how to talk.
    I appreciate that Wayne dedicates tremendous time toward the goal of gay equality. I do. But he and I seldom see eye to eye on tactics, language, or our approach to either the ex-gay movement or people of faith.
    It isn’t actually true that all gay people are interchangeable.

  243. I find it interesting that the usual theme here is that ‘gays are just like straights’ except for the gender of who we’re attracted to EXCEPT when it comes to anything negative. I just brought up the possibility of homosexism and, of course, that notion was refuted (not well, BTW, but refuted nonetheless) Bullying–let’s lay ALL of that on the straights (and religious conservatives)…Bias and Bigotry–if the gays have it, it’s only because the straights created it. Intolerance–again the domain of the conservatives; ‘gay intolerance’ is merely a natural response. Judgementalism and Prejudice–that’s the straights…we gays are simply telling it like it is.
    In future conversations, I hope we can recognize that ‘gays are just like straights’ is just a line…that there are real differences and it’s okay to explore them–even the differences that might be perceived as negative. Difference DOES NOT necessarily mean superiority or inferiority…just difference.
    –Throbert–
    My drag name would be Minerva Huntington. ( First pet; street I grew up on) or Rusty Huntingdon if a male porn star. (First dog; street I grew up on)
    Dave Roberts and others–
    I agree…not fond of Apple gadgetry or it’s incompatibility. Not thrilled with MS. Even though I have a basic Windows OS, I use “Open Office” for documents, spreadsheets, etc. LOL. And somehow I wind up with toolbars offering MSN search, Norton search, Verizon search….but NO SEARCH ENGINE compares to Google!
    This weekend when I had car troubles that no one could quite get to the bottom of, I reduced the symptoms to a google search “corolla brake lights blow fuses” and had both the diagnosis and the cure in seconds!!!!! Then when my brother and I couldn’t get access to the brake lights after a half hour of doing everything we were supposed to, I googled “Corolla brake light access” and laughed when the very first answer went exactly to the particular frustration my brother and I were having, assured us that we had taken the right steps, cautioned against the next steps we were considering and said ‘if you’ve undone those three bolts, put down your tools. Just wrestle with the thing until it breaks free.’ (We had tried that route too but thought that we must be missing something since it still wasn’t budging.) Go Go Google!!!!

  244. They have a good friend in Wayne Besen, who models for them how to talk in this debate.

    The thing is – few people really care who is gay, who is not, and anyone in between, however, many will care and remember how they were treated. How we talk to and treat others is always a choice and as much as I can tell it has nothing to do with being gay or straight – it has to do with character, and this reveals whether what is said holds any value or substance.

  245. Oooooh, I guess I was getting uppity.

    [Checking “uppity” off the Gay-Tropes Bingo card]
    Now tell us how gay relationships are only 3/5 as good as straight ones… I’m only two squares away from a full picture frame!!

  246. Its not applied broadly to all of heterosexual culture, only those who believe that heterosexuals are superior in whatever way to homosexuals.

    Jayhuck,
    This is a much better way to say it than

    They are essentially “heterosexual supremacists” in they eyes of society.

    Thank you for being fair and measuring your words so that they are accurate.

  247. David R –

    Nope, I don’t care for MS stuff either, I use Linux 🙂 And when the Android tablets get a little more polished, I may get one of them.

    I knew it. I could almost tell from your tone that you were a Linux user 🙂

  248. Carole,

    If you are stuck on equating “inferior” with “not preferred” and “superior” with “preferred” then you will see “heterosexists” and “heterosexism” all around you and that will always agitate you for you will feel marginalized, victimized and… inferior. If, however, being perpetually agitated, feeling marginalized and victimized and inferior is actually the kind of state you enjoy, you will be happy.

    Said from the point of view of someone who has never had the experience of ticking the “no I’m not f’ing married – you won’t let me” single box on every form he’s ever filled out.
    No, I’m not “stuck on” anything. But yes, heterosexism absolutely is all around us. Every day. Abundantly.
    And you have articulated how heterosexism is experienced very well. it is the constant underlying presumption that straight is intrinsically better. Always. For you, for your offspring, for your neighbors, for your grocery clerk, for your customers, for your second-cousin twice removed that you’ve never met.
    Not that anyone has anything against gay people (or black people, or muslims, or whomever) they just would want to be one. Or wish that on anyone. Or expose their kids to it too much. Or think about it.
    Nowadays it seems strange to suggest that white people are, well, just better than black people. But that was a prevailing attitude not long ago. Not hatred, mind you, just… well… they’re God’s children too and we love them but… you wouldn’t want your child to marry one. (My father in all best of intentions once told me that it didn’t matter to him even if a girl I dated was black. His best intentions were, sadly, still held vestiges of the presumption that white was better.)
    So yeah, we “not preferred” people notice that we are “not preferred.” No, it doesn’t make me feel perpetually agitated, feeling marginalized and victimized and inferior, but it’s there. Even from very very well intentioned people who feel compelled to tell you how supportive they are.
    I think your mention of other attributes is also spot on. Ask Eddy about presumptions of height. Chairs, sinks, walkways, the entire word is designed around presumptions of “how tall people are.” Not out of malice, just because shorter people don’t exist. Well, there are specialty stores, of course, for ‘people like that’ but real people aren’t short.
    (And yes, Eddy, sometimes people in a gay setting do make presumptions about others. We can forget that there are straight folks in a group who have to be considered. Of course there are not very many settings in which gay folk are the overwhelming majority, but sometimes straight folk can become invisible there.)
    And, Carole, I have to say that this is perhaps the best example of heterosexism that I’ve come across:

    Although I don’t know about anyone posting here, I suspect there really are people who want straights to view homosexuality as a neutral or a preferred trait, and they are deep-down angry at the world because they know they are asking for the impossible, and so they play word games, settling for “heterosexists feel superior.”

    Ooooh, I guess I was getting uppity.

  249. David R –

    That’s part of were my little smirk towards Randy came from. Maybe if he had enough faith, he could live without those things 😉

    Hey – I’m a recent PC to Apple convert. Don’t be dissing my choice of OS and products 😉

  250. The real kicker, Eddy, is that I do not and have not ever owned a single Apple product for just that reason — I like open systems and they are not one. Apple does not seek to be open on anything, and they go out of their way to make their systems incompatible with the market as a whole. That’s why I had to laugh these past few days when phrases like “denied a place in the public square” come up. Apple is the antithesis of open. That’s their right, but I don’t support them with my dollars. There are many alternatives.
    That’s part of were my little smirk towards Randy came from. Maybe if he had enough faith, he could live without those things 😉

  251. It is the racism meme applied to heterosexual culture.
    These characterizations will only get worse…
    Kincaid and Roberts have been heading this direction for several years and they have arrived.

    I find it fascinating that I was referenced in the comments of a thread that I hadn’t even read. I guess my opinions have power even without being stated.
    😉
    If you are suggesting that I consider racism and heterosexism to be related in that both are based in presumptions of “how people are” resulting in the invisibility of those who differ, then yes I do. I am not heading down any direction on this, however, as I pretty much have always seen anti-gay advocacy as related to racism, sexism, or any other mindview that is based on social rejection of a group.
    Just as you didn’t see black people on Television before the 70’s, you didn’t see gay people on network TV before Will and Grace. “The audience” just couldn’t relate, you know.
    And I am not making this up: up until a decade or so ago, when you could get a major company to advertise in a gay-audience publication, they would just run whatever ad they were running in a “regular” publication. And more often than not it would have an overtly heterosexual theme. I should drink your vodka so that I’ll be more attractive to women? Really?
    No, it’s not a new observation. And it’s actually much much better than it used to be. Both for racial minorities and for gay folk.
    But I have for a while, however, been growing in my concern about a cultural phenomenon, for which I don’t yet have an “ist” term. It is the consistent banishment of moderate people of faith from television, movies, or other cultural visibility.
    The good guys on TV don’t go to church. And if there is anyone who is Christian, they are a raging loon trying to control everyone around them all to compensate for some secret personal horror.
    And it isn’t limited to scripted TV. The “Christain view” on some issue on the news isn’t given by Rev. Friendly from the Presbyterian Church explaining theology but by Pastor Nutjob from Community Church of Self-Righteousness there to rant about the sinners.
    Even Christian television is skewed towards miracle handkerchiefs, bizarrely made-up women, and assertions that God sent the latest natural disaster to punish someone (usually The Gays) for something or other.
    This results in a distorted picture of Christians as loons. And it results in a distorted response. Because raging nut-jobs are all people see, the only responses they hear are directed towards those nutjobs.
    And when you say, “hey, I’m not a loon” there’s always the response of, “oh, I don’t mean you. I mean those other kinda Christians.” Oh, no one ever puts down moderate, decent, neighbor-loving, Christians. They just pretend like they don’t exist.
    Maybe that helps you understand what we mean by “heterosexist.” It isn’t the gay haters (though they can be part) but the presumption that gay folk simply aren’t quite real people. They are an inferior group. They just don’t matter. Or exist. At least not in our community. Or our church. Or buying our products. Or voting in our district.
    Moderate (or, just not wacky) Christians take note. If you aren’t careful, you’re next.

  252. I don’t want to get into a protracted discussion on the term heterosexism. All of our labels for things fall short, or are imperfect, to some degree or another. Some people will find them useful, others will find them offensive, and some will argue they have become meaningless due to their overuse. But to label all sorts of things seems to be part of our nature, and I don’t think that is necessarily an unhelpful thing to do. The attitude expressed by the term heterosexism exists. If we choose to try and define it so we can study and discuss that particular attitude I don’t think that’s a bad thing

  253. Throbert,

    Not to discourage people from using wikipedia, but you should read and cite it with discernment, and be aware that any given article on wikipedia is only as “reliable” as (a) its supporting bibliography, and (b) the volunteer writers and editors who chose to work on it.

    I would go one step further and suggest that people read and cite anything with discernment that they find online, whether it be from a so-called reputable source or not. 🙂

  254. Carol,

    We straights value our heterosexuality as a trait (when actually forced to think about it) and given a choice, would surely claim it as our strong preference. We do indeed see it as preferred over its “opposite”–homosexuality.
    I am sure you understand that. I feel I can safely conclude that many (maybe most?) gays who comment here value their homosexuality and given a choice, would claim it as preferred over its opposite- -heterosexuality. I know there are some who are gay who would prefer not to be. It is not a preference as a trait for themselves.

    I think you are absolutely correct here. I wanted to take the opportunity to apologize for being off-putting during one of our conversations on another thread. I always appreciate what you write because it is well-written and thoughtful.
    I do not think, however, that when academics talk about heterosexism they are talking about an individual preferring their orientation for themselves over and above other types of orientations, although I would think that idea would fall under some banner of heterosexism. I usually hear the term discussed in regards to institutions or groups favoring heterosexuality over homosexuality when it comes to civil rights – where heterosexuality is viewed as the ideal to the detriment of gay people and institutions.
    Here is another defintion:

    Heterosexism is a form of discrimination that favors heterosexuals over lesbians, gay men, and bisexuals.
    Most legal systems are profoundly heterosexist, offering visitation rights, tax benefits, and other protections to opposite-sex couples that are not available to same-sex couples. Heterosexism is also a reality in the corporate world, where those who are oriented towards partners of the same sex are often denied promotions on the basis of their sexual orientation, or fired outright when their sexual orientation is discovered.
    Heterosexism is distinct from homophobia, though homophobia is in all likelihood the driving force behind heterosexism.

  255. This is true:

    Not to discourage people from using wikipedia, but you should read and cite it with discernment, and be aware that any given article on wikipedia is only as “reliable” as (a) its supporting bibliography, and (b) the volunteer writers and editors who chose to work on it.

  256. “Heterosexism is an unscientific system of attitudes, bias, and discrimination in which the heterosexual sexual orientation, heterosexuality, is viewed and treated as being superior to the homosexual sexual orientation, homosexuality.[1] Heterosexism deems homosexuals the inferiors of heterosexuals, which results in discrimination against homosexuals, commonly referred to as gays or gay people. ”
    In my neck of the woods I don’t know people who go around thinking themselves superior to homosexuals or thinking of homosexuals as inferior. I realize, however, there are those who do (the young, in particular) so in this regard, the def. makes some sense.
    However, there is a real downside, a cost to the use of the word. I think many who use the term “heterosexist” or “heterosexism” are concluding (or are pretending to conclude) that because the trait of homosexuality is not a preferred trait for straights (straights don’t wake up in the morning saying, “I wish I were gay or lesbian”; they don’t wish for gay or lesbian kids when they conceive; they don’t strive to convert their straight kids to gay or lesbian; they don’t watch gay actors or actresses or musicians, and say to themselves, “I want to be like them in their field of endeavor and also be gay or lesbian like them” …) that straights must think themselves superior to gays.
    It is true, of course, that not minding a trait in others is not saying we prefer the trait for ourselves. We value some traits over others: most would rather be tall than short -although most would like neither extreme; most would rather be smart than dull, although average isn’t the end of the world; most would rather be attractive than plain; most would rather be assertive than shy; most would rather be graceful rather than awkward.) Given opposites, most of us can easily claim our preference, yet we realize that for most traits, we fall somewhere in the middle, far from the extremes.
    However, for most, sexuality falls to the extremes. We are attracted to, we fall in love with either someone of our own gender or someone of the opposite gender. So, let me look at those extremes in terms of preference.
    We straights value our heterosexuality as a trait (when actually forced to think about it) and given a choice, would surely claim it as our strong preference. We do indeed see it as preferred over its “opposite”–homosexuality.
    I am sure you understand that. I feel I can safely conclude that many (maybe most?) gays who comment here value their homosexuality and given a choice, would claim it as preferred over its opposite- -heterosexuality. I know there are some who are gay who would prefer not to be. It is not a preference as a trait for themselves.
    So, let’s look at traits in this manner, whether we are talking about height, color of eyes or hair, or race, or facets of personality such as extroversion or introversion: we view traits as either neutral (perhaps something like hair color); as preferred (intelligence ); as not preferred (violent).
    Viewed in this manner, to the overwhelming majority of straights of all political ideologies, homosexuality is not a preferred trait when it comes to their own sexuality or that of their offspring. If you are stuck on equating “inferior” with “not preferred” and “superior” with “preferred” then you will see “heterosexists” and “heterosexism” all around you and that will always agitate you for you will feel marginalized, victimized and… inferior. If, however, being perpetually agitated, feeling marginalized and victimized and inferior is actually the kind of state you enjoy, you will be happy.
    Although I don’t know about anyone posting here, I suspect there really are people who want straights to view homosexuality as a neutral or a preferred trait, and they are deep-down angry at the world because they know they are asking for the impossible, and so they play word games, settling for “heterosexists feel superior.”
    So, if a person sees the trait as something they don’t prefer or don’t view as neutral for themselves (or for their offspring) it seems we heterosexuals are doomed to being called “heterosexists” by a subgroup of a subgroup.
    It’ll accomplish nothing. In fact, it will be counter-productive.
    The word “racist” has lost its meaning because it has been applied so promiscuously. Its misuse has turned counterproductive.

  257. David B –

    Timothy and David R see marriage rights for gays and lesbians through a different window than many on the conservative side do. They resort to a polarizing and inflammatory name-calling technique as a way to control and truncate the debate.

    That first part is true, however I find no evidence to suggest they do the latter, or that they are in any way aligned with Mr Besen. A good deal of the Evangelical Christian community resort to inflammatory name calling of gay people – name calling that makes Besen’s words seem flowery or flattery, as I said before, by comparison.
    Timothy was part of an effort, not too long ago, to try and build bridges between the conservative Evangelical Christian and gay communities. I find it incredibly unfair that you would level that sort of criticism at him.

  258. Well, you’re welcome to shorten it to “Rob,” if you like, since that’s my real name!

    I thought so. I should have said your “online/blog name” above. That comment was simply for humor’s sake.

  259. Eddy,

    Is the application of the term heterosexism to others also ‘unscientific’? What is the accurate gauge or measure of attitudes, bias and discrimination? Is viewing and treating homosexuals differently automatically a superiority trip? Does the counter position of ‘homosexism’ exist? Let me rephrase that one…I KNOW it exists, I’ve overheard enough ‘dumb breeder’ comments in my life…but I’m wondering if there are broader applications.

    It is from Wikipedia. They use the same basic definition for “Racism”. I used to hear “dumb breeder” comments as well, although I’ve never found that term to be used to justify a position that homosexuals are better and deserve more rights and privileges than heterosexuals. When I have heard it, it seemed mostly to be used by young gay people as a retort/rebuttal to anti-gay folk and the terms they suffered at their hands. I don’t think I’ve ever read a somewhat serious article by any pro-gay organization calling straight people “dumb breeders” and suggesting that straight people don’t deserve the same rights as gay folk. Something like that may exist I just haven’t seen it.
    That term seems to have been used similarly to the way “honky” was used by some in the African American community.

  260. David Roberts-
    Thanks. I understand what you’re saying–even from my ‘hippie-radical’ “if only we could all just speak freely and let the listeners sort out what works for them” mentality.
    And perhaps Randy ought to be the one to spearhead a boycott of the Apple gadgets instead of supporting them with his dollars.
    I’ve never been a big fan of boycotts but I think there’s some dynamic going on that is beginning to resurrect those old notions of petitions and boycotts.

  261. Debbie,

    What good does NARTH do? Just curious…

    I think they provide an alternative for those who feel their options may be limited. They also provide an outlet and a platform for psychologists and shrinks who are disenchanted with APA or who feel APA does not represent the whole field. They have a right to their views, but of course, not to misquote or misrepresent others’ work.

    I disagree.
    I think that they provide a disservice to those who seek alternate explanations, positions, responses or views.
    They are an embarrassment that reflects badly on anyone who might disagree with popular sentiment or explanation of orientation. Their lack of professionalism, their drive to put presumptions ahead of research, and their eagerness in misquoting others all serve to present an image that anyone who posits anything other than “predetermined orientation at birth” is a quack.
    Not to mention their welcoming and advancing of every loon that comes along, no matter that they have – shall we say unconventional – views on slavery, bullying, or child rearing. (That it is to people like Schoenwolf and Berger that they turn for peer review should tell you something about the quality of their work.)
    When your two sources are the organization of professionals and a group that makes UFO-chasers seem rational, they certainly aren’t helping those who disagree with the APA.

  262. NARTH has chosen another path. Instead of apologize, they twice repeated their error

    This is key — Collins was quite gracious and gave NARTH ample room to save face by merely admitting that they had “chosen their words carelessly” or “failed to adequately fact-check” or something to that effect.

  263. On the tendentious “Which is better?” and “Why would anyone choose to be gay?” questions, my response in the past has been this:
    I don’t personally subscribe to reincarnation, but suppose for the sake of discussion that someday I find myself in the hereafter and the Reincarnation Angel-Clerk says to me, “Guess what, sir or madam? Not only is reincarnation for reals, but we have pre-qualified you to live again in the demographic identity of your choosing! Male or female, brown or yellow or red or white, straight or bisexual or gay — it’s up to you if you act now!
    Well, although I have no memories of “choosing” homosexuality in this life, if the choice of reincarnation as a male homosexual were offered to me in the afterlife, I would strongly consider being “born gay” a second time around.
    P.S. Mind you, if we only got ONE chance for reincarnation, I might opt to be a woman rather than a man, regardless of orientation, just so I would have a better sense of how the other 50% of humanity lives. But if it turns out we can be reincarnated multiple times, then I would certainly pick the “male homosexual” option again from time to time, while also trying other identities.
    P.P.S. Actually, my FIRST choice for reincarnation would be “a Klingon of either sex, or the nearest analogue to Klingons in the real universe”; and if the Reincarnation Angel informed me that my options were restricted to lifeforms on this planet, then my SECOND choice would be “bottlenose dolphin.” But if neither of those was a menu choice and I had to be a human again, then I wouldn’t rule out being a homosexual Homo sapiens.

  264. BTW: where did that particular definition of heterosexism come from?

    It’s from the wikipedia entry, Eddy.
    Not to discourage people from using wikipedia, but you should read and cite it with discernment, and be aware that any given article on wikipedia is only as “reliable” as (a) its supporting bibliography, and (b) the volunteer writers and editors who chose to work on it.
    (The “homophobia” article on wikipedia, although far from perfect, isn’t nearly as tendentious and viewpoint-laden as the “heterosexism” one. Part of the reason for this is that the “homophobia” article has been around a lot longer and has gone through more rounds of debate and editing.)

  265. If Collins says he meant that homosexuality could be or is one of the human behavior traits excluded from his “virtually none of them,” then I guess we have to take him at his word. But Byrd could not have known that when he wrote his article, and his assessment was not outlandish at the time. Now, after Collins has weighed in on the article, it’s up to NARTH to apologize for the misunderstanding and move on.
    NARTH has chosen another path. Instead of apologize, they twice repeated their error, once writing as the American College of Pediatrics and once writing as the Foundation of Attraction Research. And having again been slapped down, by Collins on the NIH website and by some Brigham Young professors in the Salt Lake Tribune, they decided to blame their woes on David Roberts rather than on their penchant for ‘honest misunderstanding of others’ work’.
    I’m absolutely certain that you agree with me, with Warren and with David Roberts that the path they have chosen is deserving of all the criticism that they are now receiving.

  266. Throbert (I keep wanting to shorten your name but it would be wrong)

    Well, you’re welcome to shorten it to “Rob,” if you like, since that’s my real name!
    (“Throbert” has been my standard online handle since the late ’90s — it came out of one of those threads about “The Formula for Your Porn Star Name” where you combine the name of your hometown with the name of a childhood pet, or sometimes it might be the name of your favorite alcoholic beverage plus the surname of an elementary school teacher, e.g., Cosmopolitan Lipkowicz, or whatever.
    Anyway, my first childhood pet was the imaginatively named Goldy the Goldfish, and I thought “Goldy” sounded much too femme for a male porn star, so someone else suggested “Throbert” and I’ve used it ever since!)

  267. Beyond that, thanks all. It’s been mostly good reading today. (LOL. Yeah, even you David Roberts…except for the personal digs against Randy Thomas and his love for gadgets.)

    Eddy, I can’t really keep commenting as I’m avoiding real work. But I want to reply, as I’m being totally serious. No sarcasm here, let’s just look at this. Apple is a pro-gay rights company. They have made that clear. They contributed heavily to defeat prop 8. And now, they have twice made it clear they do not tolerate anti-gay or pro-exgay materials in their store. This a much stronger stance than any other tech company I know of.
    Obviously it’s a personal issue, just like it is when someone does not shop somewhere that tends to abuse workers overseas, etc. But does it not seem a bit of a contradiction for Randy (and others there) to revel so much in their Apple devices? Randy already has an iPad 2, and has blogged about it. He’s given Apple hundreds or even thousands of dollars now, and he keeps on. At what point does that look like hypocrisy?
    I’m being serious. Whether I think it would be silly to avoid their products or not is not the issue. They take this stuff *very seriously* so that’s a different matter. It’s not like their aren’t other phones and computers out there.
    Why is that such an absurd observation?

  268. I do understand. It just seems to me that if Francis Collins and Dr. Throckmorton are taking issue with a perception that Dean Byrd is willfully distorting what Francis Collins wrote to advance narth, that he be given the chance to clarify his intreptation of what was written.

    I’m not quite sure that you do understand.
    Dr. Collins isn’t “taking issue” with anything other than that his character and his reputation are being threatened by the public distortion of his views and his work. Having clarified (three times) that NARTH’s characterization of his views and work is inaccurate, he has moved on. So let’s revise:

    It just seems to me that if Francis Collins and Dr. Throckmorton are is taking issue with a perception that Dean Byrd is willfully distorting what Francis Collins wrote to advance narth, that he be given the chance to clarify his intreptation of what was written.

    But Dr. Throckmorton is not taking issue with the perception that Dean Byrd’s distorted. Actually Dr. Throckmorton shares that perception.
    However, one may have various perceptions until a matter has become clear. Once clarified, it is no longer a matter of perception. Let’s revise:

    It just seems to me that if Francis Collins and Dr. Throckmorton are is taking issue with a perception that Dean Byrd is willfully distorting what Francis Collins wrote to advance narth, that he be given the chance to clarify his intreptation of what was written.

    I’m sure that Dr. Throckmorton is, indeed, concerned about whether Byrd’s distortion is/was intentional. But Byrd is not really the focal point of his criticism.
    The specific authorship being assigned to Byrd is less important than that this claim by NARTH has been repeated by NARTH or other associates twice after Collins has refuted it (once by NARTH board members under the guise of a subcommittee of ACPeds and again by a Mormon organization started by Byrd.) Indeed, it was as a NARTH leader that Byrd wrote, and it is NARTH’s board that is attacking Roberts, not Byrd.
    You will note that Dr. Throckmorton is not laser-focused on Byrd. His criticism is with NARTH.
    (And to be more correct, it is NARTH’s beliefs that NARTH was advancing rather than the organization itself)
    So, another revision:

    It just seems to me that if Francis Collins and Dr. Throckmorton are is taking issue with a perception that Dean Byrd NARTH is willfully distorting what Francis Collins wrote to advance narth their positions, that he Byrd and/or NARTHbe given the chance to clarify his intreptation of what was written.

    The paragraph, as written, implies that Byrd had never been given a chance to clarify. Additionally, it implies that Throckmorton’s objection is to Byrd’s (or NARTH’s) interpretation of what was written. Both are false.
    Byrd and NARTH have been specifically invited to clarity. By more than one person and on more than one occasion. They chose not to.
    Also, NARTH is free to believe what it will about Collins’ work. They are free to interpret anything they like from it. What is unethical and immoral is to imply that their interpretation is shared by Collins or that they are accurately representing his opinion or views.
    While I regularly interpret research and polls and findings and writings, I do not blatantly imply that the researcher, pollster, analyst, and author share my interpretation – especially after they have publicly refuted my claim.
    So, our final revision:

    It just seems to me that if Francis Collins and Dr. Throckmorton are is taking issue with a perception that Dean Byrd NARTH is willfully distorting what Francis Collins wrote to advance narth their positions, that he Byrd and/or NARTH be given the another chance to clarify his intreptation their distortion and misrepresentation of what was written.

    Or:

    It just seems to me that if Dr. Throckmorton is taking issue that NARTH is willfully distorting what Francis Collins wrote to advance their positions that Byrd and/or NARTH be given another chance to clarify their distortion and misrepresentation of what was written.

    And you are certainly entitled to that view.
    After NARTH having accused Roberts of being a liar and suggested that Collins is a gullible fool, I am less generous in the doling out of chances.

  269. Of course, if there is software on the iPhone that prevents you from obtaining apps from non-Apple sites and thus forces everyone to use only Apple-approved apps, then banning the “Exodus app” from the Apple site is tantamount to banning the Exodus app from existence.

    Robert, Apple controls *everything* about their devices. In that the Exodus app is an *Apple iPhone App*, then yes, short of people who jailbreak their phones, the Exodus *Apple iPhone App* is no longer. As Apple says often and in various ways, “if you don’t like how we run it, don’t use it.” I’m not sure I’ve missed that update where everyone is granted the right of exposure on a heavily policed, proprietary system.
    People can complain about the methods here, but the core issue is absolutely reasonable. Apple didn’t catch it at first, probably because the system is automated at certain levels. A rather quick petition and 146,000 signatures managed to get their attention and a human being had a look. Either way, they then delisted the app as being in violation of their developer TOS. This was entirely predictable, and Exodus *must* have known it would happen.
    Really, Apple can not only remove any app they wish from their store, they can snatch it right off your phone if they care too. For that matter, they can deactivate your phone if they don’t like what you are doing to it — and you own the phone. This is the ethos into which Exodus brought their app. Anyone claiming now that this was a “free speech” issue, you haven’t a leg or even a toe to stand on.
    As I said before, the curious thing is, why do Exodus leadership support such an “anti-ex-gay” company by buying their equipment?

  270. Heterosexism is an unscientific system of attitudes, bias, and discrimination in which the heterosexual sexual orientation, heterosexuality, is viewed and treated as being superior to the homosexual sexual orientation, homosexuality.

    Is the application of the term heterosexism to others also ‘unscientific’? What is the accurate gauge or measure of attitudes, bias and discrimination? Is viewing and treating homosexuals differently automatically a superiority trip? Does the counter position of ‘homosexism’ exist? Let me rephrase that one…I KNOW it exists, I’ve overheard enough ‘dumb breeder’ comments in my life…but I’m wondering if there are broader applications.
    BTW: where did that particular definition of heterosexism come from? I see it has a citation marking or two so assume it should be credited to some source.
    —-

    (All of this while you freely accept comments from bloggers who declare things like ‘We aren’t out to silence EXODUS’ and ‘We aren’t trying to stop people who believe like they do from following their beliefs’.)
    Somehow, that story, that also embraces the cherished American traditions of freedom of speech and thought escaped your radar.

    That’s the entirety of my personal commentary on the I-Phone app. I apologize for not clarifying that I wasn’t appealing to the legal traditions regarding freedom of speech but rather to the tradition–to the spirit of freedom of speech and thought. (The one time I was quoted, it was just the one sentence and “and thought” was omitted.)
    So it seems that, sometimes out of the same mouths, we hear ‘no one is trying to silence them’…’no one is trying to shut them down’ and then a bit later ‘it’s perfectly understandable why they should be silenced or shut down’. It feels like a genuine breech of logic to have those contradictory statements all stand unchallenged. Not sure whether we’re dealing with understatement, overstatement, mindless blog rebuttal for rebuttal’s sake but it seems to be an evidence of the gobbledygook of polarization.
    BTW: Coming up with justifications for the polarization leads precisely NOWHERE. It means that NO ONE, including those who have turned from past bad attitudes and those who have a sincere desire to build some kind of workable bridge, …NO ONE can pursue meaningful non-polarized discussion as long as there are some out there still fueling that fire. And, until we can build some bridge of communication, we have no effective tools to effectively put out the fire. It’s a hopeless Catch-22!
    Beyond that, thanks all. It’s been mostly good reading today. (LOL. Yeah, even you David Roberts…except for the personal digs against Randy Thomas and his love for gadgets.)

  271. It means it can’t be loaded onto the iphone.

    Thanks for the explanation, ken.
    So in a very limited sense, it’s fair to say that Apple’s action is a type of quasi-censorship, especially if you’re making a “moral argument” against censorship, rather than a legal one.
    It’s merely “quasi” in that Apple isn’t a government agency — but banning the Exodus app from the App Store is, at least, burdensome to iPhone owners who would like to have the Exodus app but would also like to continue using the App Store. And there is a “morally censorious” element in that Apple’s ban of the Exodus app isn’t content-neutral (i.e., it’s not based on the argument that the 3rd-party software is unstable or poses a security risk), and content-neutrality has often been a factor when SCOTUS and other courts analyze First Amendment cases.
    All that said, it’s not censorship in any proper legal sense because (as others have pointed out) Apple has a right to set various conditions and limits on the use of its product.

  272. Luckily, that is why I posted a definition from a more reliable source than myself

    Grasshopper, the first rule of citing wikipedia is NOT to assume that any given article or definition is “reliable” simply because it appears on wikipedia.
    In this case, the article flagrantly breaks wikipedia’s “Neutral Point-of-View” requirement in the very first sentence, by defining “heterosexism” as “unscientific,” and the article continues in the same Consciousness-Raising vein.
    And in paragraph 3, we get: “Given that all current cultures are heterosexist to some degree, and the global culture is as well, it can be argued that all people carry extrinsic heterosexist attitudes
    To repeat what I said, if “heterosexism” is delimited in terms that are vague or elastic or otherwise not actually delimiting, the tendency will be to find heterosexism everywhere. And indeed, according to this article, the label “heterosexist” applies to EVERY SINGLE PERSON ON THE PLANET.
    This is not good encyclopedic writing. (It’s pretty good pamphleteering, though.)

  273. Jayhuck,
    Just my experience with the two, earlier with Timothy, lately with David R.
    Marriage as an institution is broken and somewhat corrupted. I have always argued that this first happened with heterosexuals.
    Trying to repair it, to have it return to a more conservative, well defined institution preceded the whole gay marriage debate.
    It has very little to do with heterosexism, or paternalism or any number of other “isms.”
    Timothy and David R see marriage rights for gays and lesbians through a different window than many on the conservative side do. They resort to a polarizing and inflammatory name-calling technique as a way to control and truncate the debate.
    They have a good friend in Wayne Besen, who models for them how to talk in this debate.

  274. Throbert…
    Just a thought… knee-jerk reactionism isn’t pretty in either liberal group-thinking or in “look at me, I’m not a liberal” snarkiness.
    Ooooh, I get it, you are independent and not defined by your sexuality. Well goodie for you. That makes you special.
    But I’m more impressed by those who articulate a position than I am by those who define themselves by what they are not (though it certainly feels better to ‘not be like him’ doesn’t it?). Do you believe what you believe because you’ve thought about it, or because it’s the opposite of what The Left believes?
    Oh, and though it probably hasn’t occurred to you… but I’m not a liberal either.

  275. Throbert…
    Just a thought… knee-jerk reactionism isn’t pretty in either liberal group-thinking or in “look at me, I’m not a liberal” snarkiness.
    Ooooh, I get it, you are independent and not defined by your sexuality. Well goodie for you. That makes you special.
    But I’m more impressed by those who articulate a position than I am by those who define themselves by what they are not (though it certainly feels better to ‘not be like him’ doesn’t it?). Do you believe what you believe because you’ve thought about it, or because it’s the opposite of what The Left believes?
    Oh, and though it probably hasn’t occurred to you… but I’m not a liberal either.

  276. Throbert McGee# ~ Mar 24, 2011 at 3:35 pm
    “Of course, if there is software on the iPhone that prevents you from obtaining apps from non-Apple sites and thus forces everyone to use only Apple-approved apps, then banning the “Exodus app” from the Apple site is tantamount to banning the Exodus app from existence.’
    Yes this is the case, Apple only allows approved apps to be downloaded,so no 3rd party (unapproved) apps can be installed. Now the system has been cracked and you can configure your iphone to accept unapproved apps if you hack it. However if you do so, you will no longer be able to download from the app-store.
    “So, could someone please to ‘splain for me what the actual, practical impact of Apple’s crackdown on the Exodus app is?”
    It means it can’t be loaded onto the iphone.

  277. Throbert (I keep wanting to shorten your name but it would be wrong) ;),

    And of course, this isn’t a problem unique to gay activism — in any type of activism, there will be a temptation to keep coming back to methods that gain a huge amount of short-lived press coverage and high-fives from people who already agree with you, even if these methods are ultimately off-putting to society at large.

    Yeah – I agree!

  278. You’re right, Jayhuck; I should’ve written “some gay activists will always be suckers for strategies that are ‘flashy,’ even if these strategies are predictably prone to backfire.”
    And of course, this isn’t a problem unique to gay activism — in any type of activism, there will be a temptation to keep coming back to methods that gain a huge amount of short-lived press coverage and high-fives from people who already agree with you, even if these methods are ultimately off-putting to society at large.

  279. Throbert,

    It appears to me that if you use a nebulous phrase like “in whatever way” to define and describe “heterosexism,” the result will be a inevitable tendency to apply “heterosexism” broadly.

    Luckily, that is why I posted a definition from a more reliable source than myself 🙂 My attempt at defining the term is likely to fall short since I’m still trying to fully understand the concept 🙂

  280. It’s not applied broadly to all of heterosexual culture, only those who believe that heterosexuals are superior in whatever way to homosexuals.

    It appears to me that if you use a nebulous phrase like “in whatever way” to define and describe “heterosexism,” the result will be a inevitable tendency to apply “heterosexism” broadly.

  281. David B –

    Kincaid and Roberts have been heading this direction for several years and they have arrived.

    I don’t understand what you mean by saying these people have been heading this direction for several years. Do you mind elaborating?

  282. Throbert,

    When have gay activists ever let easily-predictable backfiring damp their enthusiasm?

    I don’t think its fair of you to lump all “gay activists” together to suggest they all follow some predictable backfiring path. They do not.

  283. David B –

    It is the racism meme applied to heterosexual culture.

    Its not applied broadly to all of heterosexual culture, only those who believe that heterosexuals are superior in whatever way to homosexuals.

    Heterosexism is an unscientific system of attitudes, bias, and discrimination in which the heterosexual sexual orientation, heterosexuality, is viewed and treated as being superior to the homosexual sexual orientation, homosexuality.[1] Heterosexism deems homosexuals the inferiors of heterosexuals, which results in discrimination against homosexuals, commonly referred to as gays or gay people.

  284. Carole,

    If you are stuck on equating “inferior” with “not preferred” and “superior” with “preferred” then you will see “heterosexists” and “heterosexism” all around you and that will always agitate you for you will feel marginalized, victimized and… inferior. If, however, being perpetually agitated, feeling marginalized and victimized and inferior is actually the kind of state you enjoy, you will be happy.

    Said from the point of view of someone who has never had the experience of ticking the “no I’m not f’ing married – you won’t let me” single box on every form he’s ever filled out.
    No, I’m not “stuck on” anything. But yes, heterosexism absolutely is all around us. Every day. Abundantly.
    And you have articulated how heterosexism is experienced very well. it is the constant underlying presumption that straight is intrinsically better. Always. For you, for your offspring, for your neighbors, for your grocery clerk, for your customers, for your second-cousin twice removed that you’ve never met.
    Not that anyone has anything against gay people (or black people, or muslims, or whomever) they just would want to be one. Or wish that on anyone. Or expose their kids to it too much. Or think about it.
    Nowadays it seems strange to suggest that white people are, well, just better than black people. But that was a prevailing attitude not long ago. Not hatred, mind you, just… well… they’re God’s children too and we love them but… you wouldn’t want your child to marry one. (My father in all best of intentions once told me that it didn’t matter to him even if a girl I dated was black. His best intentions were, sadly, still held vestiges of the presumption that white was better.)
    So yeah, we “not preferred” people notice that we are “not preferred.” No, it doesn’t make me feel perpetually agitated, feeling marginalized and victimized and inferior, but it’s there. Even from very very well intentioned people who feel compelled to tell you how supportive they are.
    I think your mention of other attributes is also spot on. Ask Eddy about presumptions of height. Chairs, sinks, walkways, the entire word is designed around presumptions of “how tall people are.” Not out of malice, just because shorter people don’t exist. Well, there are specialty stores, of course, for ‘people like that’ but real people aren’t short.
    (And yes, Eddy, sometimes people in a gay setting do make presumptions about others. We can forget that there are straight folks in a group who have to be considered. Of course there are not very many settings in which gay folk are the overwhelming majority, but sometimes straight folk can become invisible there.)
    And, Carole, I have to say that this is perhaps the best example of heterosexism that I’ve come across:

    Although I don’t know about anyone posting here, I suspect there really are people who want straights to view homosexuality as a neutral or a preferred trait, and they are deep-down angry at the world because they know they are asking for the impossible, and so they play word games, settling for “heterosexists feel superior.”

    Ooooh, I guess I was getting uppity.

  285. So to me it looks like a move that has a lot of potential to backfire.

    When have gay activists ever let easily-predictable backfiring damp their enthusiasm?

  286. I brought up the fact that Exodus’ app was evangelistic in nature (i.e. designed to convert others to their way of thinking) not because that is itself necessarily a horrible thing

    What you wrote was:

    They want people to load this thing up and then share it as a way to lend credibility leeched from Apple to their own cause.

    Generally, when people use “leech” as a metaphor, they mean to underscore that they’re talking about “a horrible thing.”
    (NB: The verb “to leach” isn’t always highly negative because it can refer to a sort of passive, osmotic transfer of dissolved nutrients via percolating water. But “to leech” is nearly always extremely negative because it implies that resources are being drained via active and deliberate parasitism, in the manner of bloodsucking worms.)

  287. The real kicker, Eddy, is that I do not and have not ever owned a single Apple product for just that reason — I like open systems and they are not one. Apple does not seek to be open on anything, and they go out of their way to make their systems incompatible with the market as a whole. That’s why I had to laugh these past few days when phrases like “denied a place in the public square” come up. Apple is the antithesis of open. That’s their right, but I don’t support them with my dollars. There are many alternatives.
    That’s part of were my little smirk towards Randy came from. Maybe if he had enough faith, he could live without those things 😉

  288. Well .. I don’t see this as a free speech issue since Apple has a right to determine what they have on their phone. However I question the petition route. It would have been better for gay affirming orginazations to have developed their own app(s). If they try to do this now .. I think it is a sure bet that certain groups would petition against their app.
    So to me it looks like a move that has a lot of potential to backfire.
    Dave

  289. It is the racism meme applied to heterosexual culture.

    When I hear people use terms like “white privilege” or “heterosexual privilege” or “[fill in the blank] privilege,” the phrase that pops into my head as the historic antecedent of this Envy-Driven thinking is:
    kulak privilege”
    (The kulaks being those Russian and Ukrainian peasants who had the extreme rudeness to be more successful and affluent than the rest of the peasantry, and thus became subject to purges and liquidation as “Class Enemies” during the collectivization of Soviet agriculture.)

  290. Okay, I’m trying to play catch-up with the whole “Exodus iPhone app” story — I have a “classic iPod” but have never used or owned an iPhone (or any analogous non-Apple phone). In fact, it’s been several years since I even owned a cell phone!
    So anyway, I understand what an “iPhone app” is, more or less, but the part I’m not clear on is the degree of control that Apple actually has over 3rd-party apps, and also the mechanism by which apps are distributed.
    In practical terms, what I gather is that Apple has banned the “Exodus app” from the Official Apple® iPhone® App-store™, but it’s not clear to me that this prevents iPhone owners from distributing and obtaining the “Exodus app” via non-Apple sites.
    Of course, if there is software on the iPhone that prevents you from obtaining apps from non-Apple sites and thus forces everyone to use only Apple-approved apps, then banning the “Exodus app” from the Apple site is tantamount to banning the Exodus app from existence.
    So, could someone please to ‘splain for me what the actual, practical impact of Apple’s crackdown on the Exodus app is?

  291. It is the racism meme applied to heterosexual culture.
    These characterizations will only get worse…
    Kincaid and Roberts have been heading this direction for several years and they have arrived.

  292. David B –

    Timothy and David R see marriage rights for gays and lesbians through a different window than many on the conservative side do. They resort to a polarizing and inflammatory name-calling technique as a way to control and truncate the debate.

    That first part is true, however I find no evidence to suggest they do the latter, or that they are in any way aligned with Mr Besen. A good deal of the Evangelical Christian community resort to inflammatory name calling of gay people – name calling that makes Besen’s words seem flowery or flattery, as I said before, by comparison.
    Timothy was part of an effort, not too long ago, to try and build bridges between the conservative Evangelical Christian and gay communities. I find it incredibly unfair that you would level that sort of criticism at him.

  293. Well, you’re welcome to shorten it to “Rob,” if you like, since that’s my real name!

    I thought so. I should have said your “online/blog name” above. That comment was simply for humor’s sake.

  294. Eddy,

    Is the application of the term heterosexism to others also ‘unscientific’? What is the accurate gauge or measure of attitudes, bias and discrimination? Is viewing and treating homosexuals differently automatically a superiority trip? Does the counter position of ‘homosexism’ exist? Let me rephrase that one…I KNOW it exists, I’ve overheard enough ‘dumb breeder’ comments in my life…but I’m wondering if there are broader applications.

    It is from Wikipedia. They use the same basic definition for “Racism”. I used to hear “dumb breeder” comments as well, although I’ve never found that term to be used to justify a position that homosexuals are better and deserve more rights and privileges than heterosexuals. When I have heard it, it seemed mostly to be used by young gay people as a retort/rebuttal to anti-gay folk and the terms they suffered at their hands. I don’t think I’ve ever read a somewhat serious article by any pro-gay organization calling straight people “dumb breeders” and suggesting that straight people don’t deserve the same rights as gay folk. Something like that may exist I just haven’t seen it.
    That term seems to have been used similarly to the way “honky” was used by some in the African American community.

  295. Debbie,

    What good does NARTH do? Just curious…

    I think they provide an alternative for those who feel their options may be limited. They also provide an outlet and a platform for psychologists and shrinks who are disenchanted with APA or who feel APA does not represent the whole field. They have a right to their views, but of course, not to misquote or misrepresent others’ work.

    I disagree.
    I think that they provide a disservice to those who seek alternate explanations, positions, responses or views.
    They are an embarrassment that reflects badly on anyone who might disagree with popular sentiment or explanation of orientation. Their lack of professionalism, their drive to put presumptions ahead of research, and their eagerness in misquoting others all serve to present an image that anyone who posits anything other than “predetermined orientation at birth” is a quack.
    Not to mention their welcoming and advancing of every loon that comes along, no matter that they have – shall we say unconventional – views on slavery, bullying, or child rearing. (That it is to people like Schoenwolf and Berger that they turn for peer review should tell you something about the quality of their work.)
    When your two sources are the organization of professionals and a group that makes UFO-chasers seem rational, they certainly aren’t helping those who disagree with the APA.

  296. NARTH has chosen another path. Instead of apologize, they twice repeated their error

    This is key — Collins was quite gracious and gave NARTH ample room to save face by merely admitting that they had “chosen their words carelessly” or “failed to adequately fact-check” or something to that effect.

  297. BTW: where did that particular definition of heterosexism come from?

    It’s from the wikipedia entry, Eddy.
    Not to discourage people from using wikipedia, but you should read and cite it with discernment, and be aware that any given article on wikipedia is only as “reliable” as (a) its supporting bibliography, and (b) the volunteer writers and editors who chose to work on it.
    (The “homophobia” article on wikipedia, although far from perfect, isn’t nearly as tendentious and viewpoint-laden as the “heterosexism” one. Part of the reason for this is that the “homophobia” article has been around a lot longer and has gone through more rounds of debate and editing.)

  298. If Collins says he meant that homosexuality could be or is one of the human behavior traits excluded from his “virtually none of them,” then I guess we have to take him at his word. But Byrd could not have known that when he wrote his article, and his assessment was not outlandish at the time. Now, after Collins has weighed in on the article, it’s up to NARTH to apologize for the misunderstanding and move on.
    NARTH has chosen another path. Instead of apologize, they twice repeated their error, once writing as the American College of Pediatrics and once writing as the Foundation of Attraction Research. And having again been slapped down, by Collins on the NIH website and by some Brigham Young professors in the Salt Lake Tribune, they decided to blame their woes on David Roberts rather than on their penchant for ‘honest misunderstanding of others’ work’.
    I’m absolutely certain that you agree with me, with Warren and with David Roberts that the path they have chosen is deserving of all the criticism that they are now receiving.

  299. Throbert (I keep wanting to shorten your name but it would be wrong)

    Well, you’re welcome to shorten it to “Rob,” if you like, since that’s my real name!
    (“Throbert” has been my standard online handle since the late ’90s — it came out of one of those threads about “The Formula for Your Porn Star Name” where you combine the name of your hometown with the name of a childhood pet, or sometimes it might be the name of your favorite alcoholic beverage plus the surname of an elementary school teacher, e.g., Cosmopolitan Lipkowicz, or whatever.
    Anyway, my first childhood pet was the imaginatively named Goldy the Goldfish, and I thought “Goldy” sounded much too femme for a male porn star, so someone else suggested “Throbert” and I’ve used it ever since!)

  300. Beyond that, thanks all. It’s been mostly good reading today. (LOL. Yeah, even you David Roberts…except for the personal digs against Randy Thomas and his love for gadgets.)

    Eddy, I can’t really keep commenting as I’m avoiding real work. But I want to reply, as I’m being totally serious. No sarcasm here, let’s just look at this. Apple is a pro-gay rights company. They have made that clear. They contributed heavily to defeat prop 8. And now, they have twice made it clear they do not tolerate anti-gay or pro-exgay materials in their store. This a much stronger stance than any other tech company I know of.
    Obviously it’s a personal issue, just like it is when someone does not shop somewhere that tends to abuse workers overseas, etc. But does it not seem a bit of a contradiction for Randy (and others there) to revel so much in their Apple devices? Randy already has an iPad 2, and has blogged about it. He’s given Apple hundreds or even thousands of dollars now, and he keeps on. At what point does that look like hypocrisy?
    I’m being serious. Whether I think it would be silly to avoid their products or not is not the issue. They take this stuff *very seriously* so that’s a different matter. It’s not like their aren’t other phones and computers out there.
    Why is that such an absurd observation?

  301. Of course, if there is software on the iPhone that prevents you from obtaining apps from non-Apple sites and thus forces everyone to use only Apple-approved apps, then banning the “Exodus app” from the Apple site is tantamount to banning the Exodus app from existence.

    Robert, Apple controls *everything* about their devices. In that the Exodus app is an *Apple iPhone App*, then yes, short of people who jailbreak their phones, the Exodus *Apple iPhone App* is no longer. As Apple says often and in various ways, “if you don’t like how we run it, don’t use it.” I’m not sure I’ve missed that update where everyone is granted the right of exposure on a heavily policed, proprietary system.
    People can complain about the methods here, but the core issue is absolutely reasonable. Apple didn’t catch it at first, probably because the system is automated at certain levels. A rather quick petition and 146,000 signatures managed to get their attention and a human being had a look. Either way, they then delisted the app as being in violation of their developer TOS. This was entirely predictable, and Exodus *must* have known it would happen.
    Really, Apple can not only remove any app they wish from their store, they can snatch it right off your phone if they care too. For that matter, they can deactivate your phone if they don’t like what you are doing to it — and you own the phone. This is the ethos into which Exodus brought their app. Anyone claiming now that this was a “free speech” issue, you haven’t a leg or even a toe to stand on.
    As I said before, the curious thing is, why do Exodus leadership support such an “anti-ex-gay” company by buying their equipment?

  302. Heterosexism is an unscientific system of attitudes, bias, and discrimination in which the heterosexual sexual orientation, heterosexuality, is viewed and treated as being superior to the homosexual sexual orientation, homosexuality.

    Is the application of the term heterosexism to others also ‘unscientific’? What is the accurate gauge or measure of attitudes, bias and discrimination? Is viewing and treating homosexuals differently automatically a superiority trip? Does the counter position of ‘homosexism’ exist? Let me rephrase that one…I KNOW it exists, I’ve overheard enough ‘dumb breeder’ comments in my life…but I’m wondering if there are broader applications.
    BTW: where did that particular definition of heterosexism come from? I see it has a citation marking or two so assume it should be credited to some source.
    —-

    (All of this while you freely accept comments from bloggers who declare things like ‘We aren’t out to silence EXODUS’ and ‘We aren’t trying to stop people who believe like they do from following their beliefs’.)
    Somehow, that story, that also embraces the cherished American traditions of freedom of speech and thought escaped your radar.

    That’s the entirety of my personal commentary on the I-Phone app. I apologize for not clarifying that I wasn’t appealing to the legal traditions regarding freedom of speech but rather to the tradition–to the spirit of freedom of speech and thought. (The one time I was quoted, it was just the one sentence and “and thought” was omitted.)
    So it seems that, sometimes out of the same mouths, we hear ‘no one is trying to silence them’…’no one is trying to shut them down’ and then a bit later ‘it’s perfectly understandable why they should be silenced or shut down’. It feels like a genuine breech of logic to have those contradictory statements all stand unchallenged. Not sure whether we’re dealing with understatement, overstatement, mindless blog rebuttal for rebuttal’s sake but it seems to be an evidence of the gobbledygook of polarization.
    BTW: Coming up with justifications for the polarization leads precisely NOWHERE. It means that NO ONE, including those who have turned from past bad attitudes and those who have a sincere desire to build some kind of workable bridge, …NO ONE can pursue meaningful non-polarized discussion as long as there are some out there still fueling that fire. And, until we can build some bridge of communication, we have no effective tools to effectively put out the fire. It’s a hopeless Catch-22!
    Beyond that, thanks all. It’s been mostly good reading today. (LOL. Yeah, even you David Roberts…except for the personal digs against Randy Thomas and his love for gadgets.)

  303. It means it can’t be loaded onto the iphone.

    Thanks for the explanation, ken.
    So in a very limited sense, it’s fair to say that Apple’s action is a type of quasi-censorship, especially if you’re making a “moral argument” against censorship, rather than a legal one.
    It’s merely “quasi” in that Apple isn’t a government agency — but banning the Exodus app from the App Store is, at least, burdensome to iPhone owners who would like to have the Exodus app but would also like to continue using the App Store. And there is a “morally censorious” element in that Apple’s ban of the Exodus app isn’t content-neutral (i.e., it’s not based on the argument that the 3rd-party software is unstable or poses a security risk), and content-neutrality has often been a factor when SCOTUS and other courts analyze First Amendment cases.
    All that said, it’s not censorship in any proper legal sense because (as others have pointed out) Apple has a right to set various conditions and limits on the use of its product.

  304. Ann,
    I understand, or at least I think I understand what you are asking. I will let David defend himself rather than step in and possibly make matter worse.

  305. I pretty much agree with David here. I would equate term heterosexual supremacists to heterosexism. If you understand that definition, I think you’ll find plenty of evidence for it in Exodus’ words.

    Jayhuck,
    This does not answer my question.

  306. Ann,

    Where is the back-up for this kind of statement – or is another assumption that you want others to believe?

    I pretty much agree with David here. I would equate term heterosexual supremacists to heterosexism. If you understand that definition, I think you’ll find plenty of evidence for it in Exodus’ words.

  307. They are essentially “heterosexual supremacists” in they eyes of society.

    Where is the back-up for this kind of statement – or is another assumption that you want others to believe?

  308. Throbert McGee# ~ Mar 24, 2011 at 3:35 pm
    “Of course, if there is software on the iPhone that prevents you from obtaining apps from non-Apple sites and thus forces everyone to use only Apple-approved apps, then banning the “Exodus app” from the Apple site is tantamount to banning the Exodus app from existence.’
    Yes this is the case, Apple only allows approved apps to be downloaded,so no 3rd party (unapproved) apps can be installed. Now the system has been cracked and you can configure your iphone to accept unapproved apps if you hack it. However if you do so, you will no longer be able to download from the app-store.
    “So, could someone please to ‘splain for me what the actual, practical impact of Apple’s crackdown on the Exodus app is?”
    It means it can’t be loaded onto the iphone.

  309. Throbert,

    It appears to me that if you use a nebulous phrase like “in whatever way” to define and describe “heterosexism,” the result will be a inevitable tendency to apply “heterosexism” broadly.

    Luckily, that is why I posted a definition from a more reliable source than myself 🙂 My attempt at defining the term is likely to fall short since I’m still trying to fully understand the concept 🙂

  310. David B –

    Kincaid and Roberts have been heading this direction for several years and they have arrived.

    I don’t understand what you mean by saying these people have been heading this direction for several years. Do you mind elaborating?

  311. Throbert,

    When have gay activists ever let easily-predictable backfiring damp their enthusiasm?

    I don’t think its fair of you to lump all “gay activists” together to suggest they all follow some predictable backfiring path. They do not.

  312. David B –

    It is the racism meme applied to heterosexual culture.

    Its not applied broadly to all of heterosexual culture, only those who believe that heterosexuals are superior in whatever way to homosexuals.

    Heterosexism is an unscientific system of attitudes, bias, and discrimination in which the heterosexual sexual orientation, heterosexuality, is viewed and treated as being superior to the homosexual sexual orientation, homosexuality.[1] Heterosexism deems homosexuals the inferiors of heterosexuals, which results in discrimination against homosexuals, commonly referred to as gays or gay people.

  313. So to me it looks like a move that has a lot of potential to backfire.

    When have gay activists ever let easily-predictable backfiring damp their enthusiasm?

  314. I brought up the fact that Exodus’ app was evangelistic in nature (i.e. designed to convert others to their way of thinking) not because that is itself necessarily a horrible thing

    What you wrote was:

    They want people to load this thing up and then share it as a way to lend credibility leeched from Apple to their own cause.

    Generally, when people use “leech” as a metaphor, they mean to underscore that they’re talking about “a horrible thing.”
    (NB: The verb “to leach” isn’t always highly negative because it can refer to a sort of passive, osmotic transfer of dissolved nutrients via percolating water. But “to leech” is nearly always extremely negative because it implies that resources are being drained via active and deliberate parasitism, in the manner of bloodsucking worms.)

  315. Well .. I don’t see this as a free speech issue since Apple has a right to determine what they have on their phone. However I question the petition route. It would have been better for gay affirming orginazations to have developed their own app(s). If they try to do this now .. I think it is a sure bet that certain groups would petition against their app.
    So to me it looks like a move that has a lot of potential to backfire.
    Dave

  316. It is the racism meme applied to heterosexual culture.

    When I hear people use terms like “white privilege” or “heterosexual privilege” or “[fill in the blank] privilege,” the phrase that pops into my head as the historic antecedent of this Envy-Driven thinking is:
    kulak privilege”
    (The kulaks being those Russian and Ukrainian peasants who had the extreme rudeness to be more successful and affluent than the rest of the peasantry, and thus became subject to purges and liquidation as “Class Enemies” during the collectivization of Soviet agriculture.)

  317. Since this is now going down the ad hominem alley, I am backing away. I would counter with factual logic some of David’s points, but it’s not worth it.

    Yes, I thought so.

  318. Okay, I’m trying to play catch-up with the whole “Exodus iPhone app” story — I have a “classic iPod” but have never used or owned an iPhone (or any analogous non-Apple phone). In fact, it’s been several years since I even owned a cell phone!
    So anyway, I understand what an “iPhone app” is, more or less, but the part I’m not clear on is the degree of control that Apple actually has over 3rd-party apps, and also the mechanism by which apps are distributed.
    In practical terms, what I gather is that Apple has banned the “Exodus app” from the Official Apple® iPhone® App-store™, but it’s not clear to me that this prevents iPhone owners from distributing and obtaining the “Exodus app” via non-Apple sites.
    Of course, if there is software on the iPhone that prevents you from obtaining apps from non-Apple sites and thus forces everyone to use only Apple-approved apps, then banning the “Exodus app” from the Apple site is tantamount to banning the Exodus app from existence.
    So, could someone please to ‘splain for me what the actual, practical impact of Apple’s crackdown on the Exodus app is?

  319. Just wondering who you think is Warren’s alter ago in the gay community, David. Who is regularly taking folks like Besen to task for his intolerance?

    Ever hear of a guy named Chris Barron? There are more but you can do your own research on that.

    Sorry, but I have to ask one more question of David. Is the MCC (Metropolitan Community Church) app not an evangelistic tool? Just wondering.

    First, there are plenty of church and ministry apps in the App Store that do not lead to pro-gay theology, the MCC issue is moot. I brought up the fact that Exodus’ app was evangelistic in nature (i.e. designed to convert others to their way of thinking) not because that is itself necessarily a horrible thing, but because it goes against what Exodus has stated about it in their interviews and press releases.
    With a proprietary, closed, heavily controlled environment like Apple, this entire question is really moot. They have full control, and they can legally and morally decide what they want in there. They have demonstrated themselves to be a pro-gay rights organization. Not only has Exodus fought against gay rights, they don’t believe they exist (special rights). They are essentially “heterosexual supremacists” in they eyes of society.
    Considering what everyone knew about Apple before hand, perhaps we should ask why Exodus’ people spend so much money on Apple devices in the first place. Isn’t that misplaced support in their world? I’m not sure there is an Apple toy that Randy Thomas doesn’t already own in multiples — and he brags about it. Change is possible Randy, you can resist the temptation to support those who are part of “evil principalities and powers.” You can live without your toys.

  320. It is the racism meme applied to heterosexual culture.
    These characterizations will only get worse…
    Kincaid and Roberts have been heading this direction for several years and they have arrived.

  321. Debbie,

    Just wondering who you think is Warren’s alter ago in the gay community, David. Who is regularly taking folks like Besen to task for his intolerance?

    I understand I am not a person of Warren’s influence or stature, but I have done this several times as an individual. This does not excuse the man, but lets make it clear that Waynes’ words are hardly on par with what we seem coming out of those conservative religious organizations listed by David.

  322. You mean like the collective rebukes we see from Exodus, et al, on the tactics of the AFA, FRC, Liberty Counsel, AFTAH, Illinoise (sub other states here) Family Association, PFOX, Greg Quinlan, and on and on and on?

    Just wondering who you think is Warren’s alter ago in the gay community, David. Who is regularly taking folks like Besen to task for his intolerance?

  323. Yes, you’ve pegged Besen correctly, David. He also has a penchant for snooping around undercover, and has even done that in various support groups in order to denigrate Exodus. He was secretly sitting in a room behind me last year and I didn’t even know it until later. I would gladly have spoken with him had I known. Though I’ve been the object of some of his past rants (and I shot back across his bow), I have no axes to grind with him or others these days. That all got very tiresome for me.
    And some rebukes have come, I believe, from within the gay community for his recent bullying tactics. I don’t want to see Warren “fight the battle” for Exodus. It’s not expected. There does appear to be a lack of balance in the “news” that’s covered here sometimes. Still, he knows that starting a topic such as that would only bring out the worst in those who would feel compelled to comment here. I get that.

  324. Those rebuke’s need to come from the gay community and I doubt they will ever come…because they are effective. It is a permissible form of bashing the religiously devout.

    You mean like the collective rebukes we see from Exodus, et al, on the tactics of the AFA, FRC, Liberty Counsel, AFTAH, Illinoise (sub other states here) Family Association, PFOX, Greg Quinlan, and on and on and on? I would love to read those (aside from the occasional peep that outside forces shamed out of them). Or were all those conveniently “private” to supposedly comply with Mathew 8?

    I have struggled with this idea of the iPhone apps and freedom of speech. I’ve been trying to figure out if this kind of speech is actually protected by the Constitution.

    I am generally like-minded in your views of free speech, but I honestly don’t see this the same way. First, it has nothing to do with the First Amendment as Apple is not a government entity – they can legally do as they wish in this matter. Apple is already a closed, highly regulated environment — the antithesis of the “public square.” No one should be surprised that they police their properties heavily — that’s just the way it is. Therefore, this is a matter of holding Apple to their own rules. If they want to open the doors and modify their practices, drastically changing their own game, have at it. I would then say it’s all fair.
    As it is, however, Apple plays by a very strict set of their own rules, under which the entire philosophy behind Exodus is unwelcome. People using their apps know the score, and seeing this representation of an organization that insists gays and lesbians are not only essentially evil in their lives, but flawed and curable, is a massive contradiction. (Yes, yes, I realize their current spin is much more moderated, but that’s all it is, spin).
    The app is fundamentally evangelistic in nature — a recruiting tool (I can finally throw that one back at someone as it’s entirely truthful). They want people to load this thing up and then share it as a way to lend credibility leeched from Apple to their own cause. Otherwise, as has been noted, interested parties could easily use their phone to browse to the Exodus website to get their information. They could even put a shortcut on their phone to go right to it. Instead, they engaged Apple to assist in spreading their mission — no way Apple is required to do that.
    No one would seriously, for instance, complain to Exodus’ web host that they shouldn’t be hosting their site. And contrary to Exodus’ attempts to prevent laws that would make the practice of denying leases to gays and lesbians illegal, no one ever asked their landlord to evict them from their office space (before they purchased new offices). No one would seriously ask their web host to dump their site – the web is open and having a site like that doesn’t mean anything more than anyone else’s. Apple is different, and has made it clear since the beginning that they will remain so. Under those rules, Exodus app really should not be there.

  325. Debbie,

    and have been shocked at how polarizing they were. Gradually, through engaging in the conversations here and elsewhere, I have moved to a place where I, too, strongly desire to see the nonsense stop. It’s fruitless.

    I think many people desire to see the nonsense stop, but as long as there are groups out there hell-bent on making sure gay people are treated as second-class citizens, making sure they don’t have the same rights as their straight counterparts, you can be sure all of this will continue.
    David B –

    Those hoping that Warren would fight these battles should adjust their expectations. Those rebuke’s need to come from the gay community and I doubt they will ever come…because they are effective. It is a permissible form of bashing the religiously devout.

    I’m sorry, but religious conservatives don’t get to play the victim card here. I don’t agree with Wayne Besen, I spent a day debating him on his reasons and methods, trying to explain to him why I thought he was wrong and why conservative religious folk deserve to have their say and to be able to believe whatever they like.
    However, I’ve said it before and I will say it again – if religious conservatives are upset with how some people in the gay community talk about them, they have only themselves to blame. There are conservative religious groups whose talk about gay people make Wayne Besens’ comments about conservative religious folk look like flattery.
    Maybe if some of these religious conservatives didn’t use all sorts of misinformation and downright lies to ensure that gay people dont’ have equal rights, this wouldn’t be an issue. Maybe the inflammatory talk and polarization will stop, or at least slow down, when gay people don’t have to fight for those rights anymore. Just a thought

  326. TWO’s rhetoric on multiple matters is inflammatory. Just visit the site and see and read the denigrating portrayals of any and all associated with religious movements to deal with unwanted SSA. Besen has carefully crafted a linquistic meme that is repeated over and over.
    His words can be found verbatim at Change.org; and regularly on Rachel Maddow.
    Those hoping that Warren would fight these battles should adjust their expectations. Those rebuke’s need to come from the gay community and I doubt they will ever come…because they are effective. It is a permissible form of bashing the religiously devout.
    This belongs on a different thread.

  327. Ann,
    I understand, or at least I think I understand what you are asking. I will let David defend himself rather than step in and possibly make matter worse.

  328. Agree with Eddy and Debbie on the polarization stuff. The only ones to lose in this are homosexuals, really.
    And, FWIW, Truth Wins Out (TWO), in my opinion, went way off the beam on the Exodus iPhone app. I think it only damages homosexuals in the long run to become too activist, and find issues that, in my estimation, should be “live and let live”. The overall mood in this country is not too congenial, at the moment. A backlash would not be unexpected, and in this case, not unwarranted.

  329. I pretty much agree with David here. I would equate term heterosexual supremacists to heterosexism. If you understand that definition, I think you’ll find plenty of evidence for it in Exodus’ words.

    Jayhuck,
    This does not answer my question.

  330. Ann,

    Where is the back-up for this kind of statement – or is another assumption that you want others to believe?

    I pretty much agree with David here. I would equate term heterosexual supremacists to heterosexism. If you understand that definition, I think you’ll find plenty of evidence for it in Exodus’ words.

  331. They are essentially “heterosexual supremacists” in they eyes of society.

    Where is the back-up for this kind of statement – or is another assumption that you want others to believe?

  332. I’m okay with the disagreement and will instead focus on our area of agreement…this damnable war of polarization has got both sides behaving unseemly. I’ve been on a search for years of a place where honest and respectful communication could happen that would move beyond the unseemly stuff. I find snippets here and then but polarization always seems to win out.

    Sadly, you are right about this, Eddy. I have gone back and looked at some of my earlier musings and even commentaries that touch on “the topic” and have been shocked at how polarizing they were. Gradually, through engaging in the conversations here and elsewhere, I have moved to a place where I, too, strongly desire to see the nonsense stop. It’s fruitless. I’ve been known to say about my life that God restored the years the locusts had eaten (Joel 2:25), and I was one of the locusts! Seems I had a bit more chomping to do after I came out of the closet.

    Keep the faith!

    I do, brother. 🙂
    FWIW, I also wondered at Warren’s silence on the Exodus iPhone app flap. Major story.

  333. Since this is now going down the ad hominem alley, I am backing away. I would counter with factual logic some of David’s points, but it’s not worth it.

    Yes, I thought so.

  334. Since this is now going down the ad hominem alley, I am backing away. I would counter with factual logic some of David’s points, but it’s not worth it.

  335. Just wondering who you think is Warren’s alter ago in the gay community, David. Who is regularly taking folks like Besen to task for his intolerance?

    Ever hear of a guy named Chris Barron? There are more but you can do your own research on that.

    Sorry, but I have to ask one more question of David. Is the MCC (Metropolitan Community Church) app not an evangelistic tool? Just wondering.

    First, there are plenty of church and ministry apps in the App Store that do not lead to pro-gay theology, the MCC issue is moot. I brought up the fact that Exodus’ app was evangelistic in nature (i.e. designed to convert others to their way of thinking) not because that is itself necessarily a horrible thing, but because it goes against what Exodus has stated about it in their interviews and press releases.
    With a proprietary, closed, heavily controlled environment like Apple, this entire question is really moot. They have full control, and they can legally and morally decide what they want in there. They have demonstrated themselves to be a pro-gay rights organization. Not only has Exodus fought against gay rights, they don’t believe they exist (special rights). They are essentially “heterosexual supremacists” in they eyes of society.
    Considering what everyone knew about Apple before hand, perhaps we should ask why Exodus’ people spend so much money on Apple devices in the first place. Isn’t that misplaced support in their world? I’m not sure there is an Apple toy that Randy Thomas doesn’t already own in multiples — and he brags about it. Change is possible Randy, you can resist the temptation to support those who are part of “evil principalities and powers.” You can live without your toys.

  336. Debbie,

    Just wondering who you think is Warren’s alter ago in the gay community, David. Who is regularly taking folks like Besen to task for his intolerance?

    I understand I am not a person of Warren’s influence or stature, but I have done this several times as an individual. This does not excuse the man, but lets make it clear that Waynes’ words are hardly on par with what we seem coming out of those conservative religious organizations listed by David.

  337. You mean like the collective rebukes we see from Exodus, et al, on the tactics of the AFA, FRC, Liberty Counsel, AFTAH, Illinoise (sub other states here) Family Association, PFOX, Greg Quinlan, and on and on and on?

    Just wondering who you think is Warren’s alter ago in the gay community, David. Who is regularly taking folks like Besen to task for his intolerance?

  338. Yes, you’ve pegged Besen correctly, David. He also has a penchant for snooping around undercover, and has even done that in various support groups in order to denigrate Exodus. He was secretly sitting in a room behind me last year and I didn’t even know it until later. I would gladly have spoken with him had I known. Though I’ve been the object of some of his past rants (and I shot back across his bow), I have no axes to grind with him or others these days. That all got very tiresome for me.
    And some rebukes have come, I believe, from within the gay community for his recent bullying tactics. I don’t want to see Warren “fight the battle” for Exodus. It’s not expected. There does appear to be a lack of balance in the “news” that’s covered here sometimes. Still, he knows that starting a topic such as that would only bring out the worst in those who would feel compelled to comment here. I get that.

  339. Those rebuke’s need to come from the gay community and I doubt they will ever come…because they are effective. It is a permissible form of bashing the religiously devout.

    You mean like the collective rebukes we see from Exodus, et al, on the tactics of the AFA, FRC, Liberty Counsel, AFTAH, Illinoise (sub other states here) Family Association, PFOX, Greg Quinlan, and on and on and on? I would love to read those (aside from the occasional peep that outside forces shamed out of them). Or were all those conveniently “private” to supposedly comply with Mathew 8?

    I have struggled with this idea of the iPhone apps and freedom of speech. I’ve been trying to figure out if this kind of speech is actually protected by the Constitution.

    I am generally like-minded in your views of free speech, but I honestly don’t see this the same way. First, it has nothing to do with the First Amendment as Apple is not a government entity – they can legally do as they wish in this matter. Apple is already a closed, highly regulated environment — the antithesis of the “public square.” No one should be surprised that they police their properties heavily — that’s just the way it is. Therefore, this is a matter of holding Apple to their own rules. If they want to open the doors and modify their practices, drastically changing their own game, have at it. I would then say it’s all fair.
    As it is, however, Apple plays by a very strict set of their own rules, under which the entire philosophy behind Exodus is unwelcome. People using their apps know the score, and seeing this representation of an organization that insists gays and lesbians are not only essentially evil in their lives, but flawed and curable, is a massive contradiction. (Yes, yes, I realize their current spin is much more moderated, but that’s all it is, spin).
    The app is fundamentally evangelistic in nature — a recruiting tool (I can finally throw that one back at someone as it’s entirely truthful). They want people to load this thing up and then share it as a way to lend credibility leeched from Apple to their own cause. Otherwise, as has been noted, interested parties could easily use their phone to browse to the Exodus website to get their information. They could even put a shortcut on their phone to go right to it. Instead, they engaged Apple to assist in spreading their mission — no way Apple is required to do that.
    No one would seriously, for instance, complain to Exodus’ web host that they shouldn’t be hosting their site. And contrary to Exodus’ attempts to prevent laws that would make the practice of denying leases to gays and lesbians illegal, no one ever asked their landlord to evict them from their office space (before they purchased new offices). No one would seriously ask their web host to dump their site – the web is open and having a site like that doesn’t mean anything more than anyone else’s. Apple is different, and has made it clear since the beginning that they will remain so. Under those rules, Exodus app really should not be there.

  340. Debbie,

    and have been shocked at how polarizing they were. Gradually, through engaging in the conversations here and elsewhere, I have moved to a place where I, too, strongly desire to see the nonsense stop. It’s fruitless.

    I think many people desire to see the nonsense stop, but as long as there are groups out there hell-bent on making sure gay people are treated as second-class citizens, making sure they don’t have the same rights as their straight counterparts, you can be sure all of this will continue.
    David B –

    Those hoping that Warren would fight these battles should adjust their expectations. Those rebuke’s need to come from the gay community and I doubt they will ever come…because they are effective. It is a permissible form of bashing the religiously devout.

    I’m sorry, but religious conservatives don’t get to play the victim card here. I don’t agree with Wayne Besen, I spent a day debating him on his reasons and methods, trying to explain to him why I thought he was wrong and why conservative religious folk deserve to have their say and to be able to believe whatever they like.
    However, I’ve said it before and I will say it again – if religious conservatives are upset with how some people in the gay community talk about them, they have only themselves to blame. There are conservative religious groups whose talk about gay people make Wayne Besens’ comments about conservative religious folk look like flattery.
    Maybe if some of these religious conservatives didn’t use all sorts of misinformation and downright lies to ensure that gay people dont’ have equal rights, this wouldn’t be an issue. Maybe the inflammatory talk and polarization will stop, or at least slow down, when gay people don’t have to fight for those rights anymore. Just a thought

  341. TWO’s rhetoric on multiple matters is inflammatory. Just visit the site and see and read the denigrating portrayals of any and all associated with religious movements to deal with unwanted SSA. Besen has carefully crafted a linquistic meme that is repeated over and over.
    His words can be found verbatim at Change.org; and regularly on Rachel Maddow.
    Those hoping that Warren would fight these battles should adjust their expectations. Those rebuke’s need to come from the gay community and I doubt they will ever come…because they are effective. It is a permissible form of bashing the religiously devout.
    This belongs on a different thread.

  342. Agree with Eddy and Debbie on the polarization stuff. The only ones to lose in this are homosexuals, really.
    And, FWIW, Truth Wins Out (TWO), in my opinion, went way off the beam on the Exodus iPhone app. I think it only damages homosexuals in the long run to become too activist, and find issues that, in my estimation, should be “live and let live”. The overall mood in this country is not too congenial, at the moment. A backlash would not be unexpected, and in this case, not unwarranted.

  343. I’m okay with the disagreement and will instead focus on our area of agreement…this damnable war of polarization has got both sides behaving unseemly. I’ve been on a search for years of a place where honest and respectful communication could happen that would move beyond the unseemly stuff. I find snippets here and then but polarization always seems to win out.

    Sadly, you are right about this, Eddy. I have gone back and looked at some of my earlier musings and even commentaries that touch on “the topic” and have been shocked at how polarizing they were. Gradually, through engaging in the conversations here and elsewhere, I have moved to a place where I, too, strongly desire to see the nonsense stop. It’s fruitless. I’ve been known to say about my life that God restored the years the locusts had eaten (Joel 2:25), and I was one of the locusts! Seems I had a bit more chomping to do after I came out of the closet.

    Keep the faith!

    I do, brother. 🙂
    FWIW, I also wondered at Warren’s silence on the Exodus iPhone app flap. Major story.

  344. Jayhuck# ~ Mar 23, 2011 at 11:17 pm
    “I have struggled with this idea of the iPhone apps and freedom of speech. ”
    It’s not a 1st Amendment issue. If the government told Apple they had to pull the app it would be a 1st amend issue. Although, Apple censoring content could have other legal ramifications for Apple, like setting them up for liability. But I’m sure apples lawyers are working to cover them from that.

  345. Eddy,

    Somehow, that story, that also embraces the cherished American traditions of freedom of speech …

    I have struggled with this idea of the iPhone apps and freedom of speech. I’ve been trying to figure out if this kind of speech is actually protected by the Constitution. It isn’t political speech, it isn’t speech that is being censored by the government, rather it is speech that is permitted, or in this case not permitted, by a private corporation. I feel that free speech is an issue here, but I don’t think its the kind of free speech we normally talk about.

  346. You certainly aren’t the only one to see NARTH’s lack of objectivity. However, their tactics (ex the recent attack on XGW) indicates this is more than simply having their biases color their judgment.

    Absolutely Ken! There is a great deal more wrong with NARTH than simply misquoting Collins or twisting his words.

  347. Teresa# ~ Mar 23, 2011 at 10:28 pm
    “I do disagree with your conclusion. I’ve read a ton of NARTH literature; and, my conclusion (and mine only) is they are heavily invested in partisanship over objectivity; but, so also, is the ‘pro-gay’ side.”
    You certainly aren’t the only one to see NARTH’s lack of objectivity. However, their tactics (ex the recent attack on XGW) indicates this is more than simply having their biases color their judgment.

  348. Eddy,

    All of this while you freely accept comments from bloggers who declare things like ‘We aren’t out to silence EXODUS’ and ‘We aren’t trying to stop people who believe like they do from following their beliefs’.

    I too found it odd that Warren didn’t post an article on the Exodus iPhone app.
    I actually am one of those people who has stated that he is not out to silence Exodus. I do not agree with the campaigns that were launched to get rid of either the Manhattan Declaration or Exodus iPhone apps. I wrote Wayne Besen of Truth Wins Out to tell him that I don’t agree with his stance on these issues and that I don’t support efforts to get rid of these applications. FTR

    LOL. Of course, Collins isn’t going to appreciate his conclusions being cited in a NARTH statement.

    I think Warren and other commenters have made it clear that the problem wasn’t as simple as merely being quoted in a NARTH statement. It is what NARTH did with his information that was the issue. I also don’t believe Collins ever said or suggested that homosexuality wasn’t genetic on some level.

  349. I’m okay with the disagreement and will instead focus on our area of agreement…this damnable war of polarization has got both sides behaving unseemly. I’ve been on a search for years of a place where honest and respectful communication could happen that would move beyond the unseemly stuff. I find snippets here and then but polarization always seems to win out.
    Keep the faith!

  350. Eddy,
    I appreciate David Roberts and Warren sharing a more complete version of this incident. Perhaps, for you, it’s overkill; for someone like me, somewhat new to this blog, it was very informative.
    I do disagree with your conclusion. I’ve read a ton of NARTH literature; and, my conclusion (and mine only) is they are heavily invested in partisanship over objectivity; but, so also, is the ‘pro-gay’ side.
    It’s difficult for some of us homosexuals to walk between this rock and a hard place. Neither side is where I choose to be.
    As you would say, Eddy, homosexuals are not a monolith … 🙂

  351. In April, 2007, NARTH posted a peer-reviewed article which considered what science could and could not say about the genesis of homosexuality. The article basically focused on whether not homosexuality could be explained by a simple biological theory.

    The focus of the article was what science could and could not say about the genesis of homosexuality. Period. The article was not about alterability…it was about what actual conclusions science actually has come up with.

    The article cited a number of studies and scientists, including Dr. Francis S. Collins, and basically, concluded that evidence for a simple biological theory of homosexuality was lacking

    .
    Horror of horrors. In keeping with their stated theme of considering what science could and could not say about the ‘genesis of homosexuality’, they quoted a respected scientist who doesn’t seem to believe that it’s ‘inborn’ or ‘genetic’. Did they go further? Did they say that Collins agreed with any of their theories or practices?
    I couldn’t find it but from there, many of you go on to make all kinds of assumptions of intents, purposes, cross-purposes, word twisting, etc.
    LOL. Of course, Collins isn’t going to appreciate his conclusions being cited in a NARTH statement. It feels pretty much like I felt when I declared publicly “I still have homosexual temptations’ and rather than have that accepted as a statement that “EXODUS doesn’t believe in miraculous 100% change and willingly admits it” it was taken as a sound bite to demonstrate ‘Change isn’t possible”.
    To dissect and over-analyze these statements as you are doing strikes me as both shameful and hypocritical. And Warren, I’m not sure…what is this…the third or fourth time that you’ve resurfaced essentially the same debate about the alleged misuse of Collins’ statements? What? Not enough negative spin the first three times around? Anything new being said? Anyone actually involved in the statements checking in?
    With such an eye to the news that impacts the concerns of your readers, I find it somewhat revealing that this story and the related ones have appeared several times and yet NO MENTION of the successful gay campaign to shut down the EXODUS Apple I-Phone App. (All of this while you freely accept comments from bloggers who declare things like ‘We aren’t out to silence EXODUS’ and ‘We aren’t trying to stop people who believe like they do from following their beliefs’.)
    Somehow, that story, that also embraces the cherished American traditions of freedom of speech and thought escaped your radar. (Maybe I’m wrong but I had assumed that you and Alan Chambers were facebook friends…which would make you aware of that story.) Like it or not, your bias is showing.
    David Roberts-
    Not to worry! I know how insufferable I can be to you. I’ve said my piece…provided my take on the matter. I don’t feel the need to say more…unless someone decides to try to twist my words. I expect disagreement…lol, this site thrives on that. But I’m going to try to bow out having said what I had to say.

  352. Jayhuck# ~ Mar 23, 2011 at 11:17 pm
    “I have struggled with this idea of the iPhone apps and freedom of speech. ”
    It’s not a 1st Amendment issue. If the government told Apple they had to pull the app it would be a 1st amend issue. Although, Apple censoring content could have other legal ramifications for Apple, like setting them up for liability. But I’m sure apples lawyers are working to cover them from that.

  353. Eddy,

    Somehow, that story, that also embraces the cherished American traditions of freedom of speech …

    I have struggled with this idea of the iPhone apps and freedom of speech. I’ve been trying to figure out if this kind of speech is actually protected by the Constitution. It isn’t political speech, it isn’t speech that is being censored by the government, rather it is speech that is permitted, or in this case not permitted, by a private corporation. I feel that free speech is an issue here, but I don’t think its the kind of free speech we normally talk about.

  354. You certainly aren’t the only one to see NARTH’s lack of objectivity. However, their tactics (ex the recent attack on XGW) indicates this is more than simply having their biases color their judgment.

    Absolutely Ken! There is a great deal more wrong with NARTH than simply misquoting Collins or twisting his words.

  355. Teresa# ~ Mar 23, 2011 at 10:28 pm
    “I do disagree with your conclusion. I’ve read a ton of NARTH literature; and, my conclusion (and mine only) is they are heavily invested in partisanship over objectivity; but, so also, is the ‘pro-gay’ side.”
    You certainly aren’t the only one to see NARTH’s lack of objectivity. However, their tactics (ex the recent attack on XGW) indicates this is more than simply having their biases color their judgment.

  356. Eddy,

    All of this while you freely accept comments from bloggers who declare things like ‘We aren’t out to silence EXODUS’ and ‘We aren’t trying to stop people who believe like they do from following their beliefs’.

    I too found it odd that Warren didn’t post an article on the Exodus iPhone app.
    I actually am one of those people who has stated that he is not out to silence Exodus. I do not agree with the campaigns that were launched to get rid of either the Manhattan Declaration or Exodus iPhone apps. I wrote Wayne Besen of Truth Wins Out to tell him that I don’t agree with his stance on these issues and that I don’t support efforts to get rid of these applications. FTR

    LOL. Of course, Collins isn’t going to appreciate his conclusions being cited in a NARTH statement.

    I think Warren and other commenters have made it clear that the problem wasn’t as simple as merely being quoted in a NARTH statement. It is what NARTH did with his information that was the issue. I also don’t believe Collins ever said or suggested that homosexuality wasn’t genetic on some level.

  357. I’m okay with the disagreement and will instead focus on our area of agreement…this damnable war of polarization has got both sides behaving unseemly. I’ve been on a search for years of a place where honest and respectful communication could happen that would move beyond the unseemly stuff. I find snippets here and then but polarization always seems to win out.
    Keep the faith!

  358. Eddy,
    I appreciate David Roberts and Warren sharing a more complete version of this incident. Perhaps, for you, it’s overkill; for someone like me, somewhat new to this blog, it was very informative.
    I do disagree with your conclusion. I’ve read a ton of NARTH literature; and, my conclusion (and mine only) is they are heavily invested in partisanship over objectivity; but, so also, is the ‘pro-gay’ side.
    It’s difficult for some of us homosexuals to walk between this rock and a hard place. Neither side is where I choose to be.
    As you would say, Eddy, homosexuals are not a monolith … 🙂

  359. In April, 2007, NARTH posted a peer-reviewed article which considered what science could and could not say about the genesis of homosexuality. The article basically focused on whether not homosexuality could be explained by a simple biological theory.

    The focus of the article was what science could and could not say about the genesis of homosexuality. Period. The article was not about alterability…it was about what actual conclusions science actually has come up with.

    The article cited a number of studies and scientists, including Dr. Francis S. Collins, and basically, concluded that evidence for a simple biological theory of homosexuality was lacking

    .
    Horror of horrors. In keeping with their stated theme of considering what science could and could not say about the ‘genesis of homosexuality’, they quoted a respected scientist who doesn’t seem to believe that it’s ‘inborn’ or ‘genetic’. Did they go further? Did they say that Collins agreed with any of their theories or practices?
    I couldn’t find it but from there, many of you go on to make all kinds of assumptions of intents, purposes, cross-purposes, word twisting, etc.
    LOL. Of course, Collins isn’t going to appreciate his conclusions being cited in a NARTH statement. It feels pretty much like I felt when I declared publicly “I still have homosexual temptations’ and rather than have that accepted as a statement that “EXODUS doesn’t believe in miraculous 100% change and willingly admits it” it was taken as a sound bite to demonstrate ‘Change isn’t possible”.
    To dissect and over-analyze these statements as you are doing strikes me as both shameful and hypocritical. And Warren, I’m not sure…what is this…the third or fourth time that you’ve resurfaced essentially the same debate about the alleged misuse of Collins’ statements? What? Not enough negative spin the first three times around? Anything new being said? Anyone actually involved in the statements checking in?
    With such an eye to the news that impacts the concerns of your readers, I find it somewhat revealing that this story and the related ones have appeared several times and yet NO MENTION of the successful gay campaign to shut down the EXODUS Apple I-Phone App. (All of this while you freely accept comments from bloggers who declare things like ‘We aren’t out to silence EXODUS’ and ‘We aren’t trying to stop people who believe like they do from following their beliefs’.)
    Somehow, that story, that also embraces the cherished American traditions of freedom of speech and thought escaped your radar. (Maybe I’m wrong but I had assumed that you and Alan Chambers were facebook friends…which would make you aware of that story.) Like it or not, your bias is showing.
    David Roberts-
    Not to worry! I know how insufferable I can be to you. I’ve said my piece…provided my take on the matter. I don’t feel the need to say more…unless someone decides to try to twist my words. I expect disagreement…lol, this site thrives on that. But I’m going to try to bow out having said what I had to say.

  360. @ Jayhuck,
    I am referring to the confrontation of Christian leaders of wrongdoing…it is not taught, encouraged or coached for the laity.
    My example of Nathan and David in 2 Samuel 12 only works because David repents.
    Think of Martin Luther and his 95 theses…and the resultant schisms and wars that followed; culminating the the freedom of religion and freedom from religion.
    It is at the root of all of Warren Throckmorton’s transition…I believe.

  361. In the end, this will damage only NARTH and Courage. They’ve become blind to anything outside their myopic view. They seem incapable of seeing a “we” in any of this. I feel great sorrow for those involved in Courage/Encourage because of this.

    Very wise Teresa 🙂

  362. Nevertheless, this kind of conflict is never discussed in Christians circles, which is the culture we are coming from. You have to figure out how to do it from scratch.

    David,
    I’m a little unclear on what you are talking about here. Are you speaking about the efforts to change NARTH made by you and Warren?

  363. There are stories to tell about professional retaliation for efforts taken in private also. Mary and Ann cannot know how those events also colored perceptions by those of us who sought a more conciliatory process in compliance with ethical demands and scripture.
    My dad used to say…”No good deed goes unpunished.” I have found that to be only rarely true, but certainly true in regards to efforts to refine and improve NARTH’s mission.
    It is extraordinarily sad.

  364. Warren is more virtuous and courageous than me by far.
    :).
    Jayhuck,
    Nevertheless, this kind of conflict is never discussed in Christians circles, which is the culture we are coming from. You have to figure out how to do it from scratch.
    In scripture there are only a few examples: Paul’s condemnation of Peter; Jesus’ reprimand of the disciples; David’s longstanding suffering waiting out King Saul.
    The strongest example of of Nathan’s rebuke of David for his murder of Bathsheba’s husband.
    These examples are never, never organized into a sermon for the laity…can you guess why?
    It is revolutionary.
    I disagree with Warren and David Roberts on this matter of demeaning and mocking sincere followers of Christ who engage in difficult truths at this site.

  365. I am a little puzzled about how NARTH can keep doing this kind of thing without observers catching the pattern.

    @Warren, David Blakeslee, et. al.,
    First, thank you David Blakeslee and Warren for sharing an inside story that really demonstrated Christian behavior at its best. You are both to be commended for your conduct.
    Being Catholic, I was associated with the Catholic ‘change’ ministries, Courage/Encourage. Courage is absolutely enamored with NARTH. NARTH is heavily promoted through Courage literature, conferences, meetings. I’ve tried on numerous occasions, unfortunately not in the Christian manner as Warren and David Blakeslee demonstrated, I’m afraid; to demonstrate to various people, some in quite high positions, the difficulty with NARTH. They didn’t want to hear anything adverse about NARTH. They wouldn’t listen, read, or try to understand.
    The Courage position in very politicized; albeit, in a shadowy way. Anything that NARTH says is the gospel; anything from the gay is evil, bad, etc. If the gay states anything, it’s gotta be wrong. If NARTH states something, knee-jerk with Courage it’s right.
    In the end, this will damage only NARTH and Courage. They’ve become blind to anything outside their myopic view. They seem incapable of seeing a “we” in any of this. I feel great sorrow for those involved in Courage/Encourage because of this.
    Thank you, again, gentlemen, for sharing what you have; and, most importantly, showing a Christian attitude and behavior. I only wish my behavior was half as good.

  366. Warren, I was thinking. … Would it be useful for you to put up a page here on NARTH, making clear what you and David have just discussed? The topic comes up frequently, and it seems to me it would be helpful to have a page to direct people to for the straight scoop.

  367. David Roberts, above, criticizes people like Ann and Mary for their wish to find a redemptive process. It is a deep demand within Christianity to seek it privately first. He is wrong to mock them.

    Are they trying to find a “redemptive process” or are they trying to find an excuse for bad behavior? I’m honestly not sure what they are trying to do. I find it odd that you seem to know their true intentions.
    I appreciate your efforts in trying to reign in NARTH, but that in no way detracts from what I said above.

  368. @David Blakeslee – Thanks, that is about the way I remember it too. I do think I have spoken to some of that history on this blog since Ann and Mary have been reading but I certainly understand their wish to see NARTH as being better. However, in defense of Roberts’ disagreement (not the sarcasm), I am a little puzzled about how NARTH can keep doing this kind of thing without observers catching the pattern.
    Back to your description, I am glad you pointed out that we made significant efforts to privately move NARTH to a better place before we went public with critical concern.

  369. Jayhuck,
    I have known Warren for a long time and respect him deeply. Especially his effort to process the data on Same Sex Attraction through the highest Christian filter: the truth.
    It is a redemptive process for him, I think, based upon some of his past decisions and based upon the bad behaviors of fellow Christians.
    His concerns early on at NARTH were largely theoretical…that there were multiple reasons for SSA as opposed to the monolithic one proposed by Joe Nicolosi. Through Warren’s efforts some broadening of the etiology of SSA did occur at NARTH…some. And Dean Byrd acknowledged to me personally and privately many times that for NARTH to grow and survive this had to occur.
    A chronology of events followed, and these are Warren’s stories to tell, of repeated efforts to reign in odd political views, odd theoretical and treatment regimens, and odd people who were endorsed by NARTH. These efforts took him to board rooms around the country to both challenge NARTH’s view of SSA as myopic and to warn some who mindlessly endorsed all that NARTH said and did.
    In the last 4 months of my tenure as a member of the Scientific Advisory Board I attempted on multiple occasions to cajole, correct and persuade various leaders at NARTH to depoliticize their website and create a larger identity around being “scientific” to include representing soundly all theories associated with SSA.
    All of this was done through back-channels in a collaborative and respectful manner.
    The response, from my point of view (subjective), was to acknowledge short-comings, to talk about the importance of unity, to demonize the GLBT advocacy groups or the APA, and to take little or no corrective action.
    David Roberts, above, criticizes people like Ann and Mary for their wish to find a redemptive process. It is a deep demand within Christianity to seek it privately first. He is wrong to mock them.
    Warren and I and others have attempted to do this on multiple occasions, Mary and Ann could not have known this.

  370. @ Jayhuck,
    I am referring to the confrontation of Christian leaders of wrongdoing…it is not taught, encouraged or coached for the laity.
    My example of Nathan and David in 2 Samuel 12 only works because David repents.
    Think of Martin Luther and his 95 theses…and the resultant schisms and wars that followed; culminating the the freedom of religion and freedom from religion.
    It is at the root of all of Warren Throckmorton’s transition…I believe.

  371. In the end, this will damage only NARTH and Courage. They’ve become blind to anything outside their myopic view. They seem incapable of seeing a “we” in any of this. I feel great sorrow for those involved in Courage/Encourage because of this.

    Very wise Teresa 🙂

  372. Nevertheless, this kind of conflict is never discussed in Christians circles, which is the culture we are coming from. You have to figure out how to do it from scratch.

    David,
    I’m a little unclear on what you are talking about here. Are you speaking about the efforts to change NARTH made by you and Warren?

  373. Warren is more virtuous and courageous than me by far.
    :).
    Jayhuck,
    Nevertheless, this kind of conflict is never discussed in Christians circles, which is the culture we are coming from. You have to figure out how to do it from scratch.
    In scripture there are only a few examples: Paul’s condemnation of Peter; Jesus’ reprimand of the disciples; David’s longstanding suffering waiting out King Saul.
    The strongest example of of Nathan’s rebuke of David for his murder of Bathsheba’s husband.
    These examples are never, never organized into a sermon for the laity…can you guess why?
    It is revolutionary.
    I disagree with Warren and David Roberts on this matter of demeaning and mocking sincere followers of Christ who engage in difficult truths at this site.

  374. Honestly, if I were the devil and I wanted to lead people away from Christ, I doubt I could do any better than Christs’ followers.

    His most effective disguise is as an angel of light.

  375. @David Blakeslee – Thanks, that is about the way I remember it too. I do think I have spoken to some of that history on this blog since Ann and Mary have been reading but I certainly understand their wish to see NARTH as being better. However, in defense of Roberts’ disagreement (not the sarcasm), I am a little puzzled about how NARTH can keep doing this kind of thing without observers catching the pattern.
    Back to your description, I am glad you pointed out that we made significant efforts to privately move NARTH to a better place before we went public with critical concern.

  376. Honestly, if I were the devil and I wanted to lead people away from Christ, I doubt I could do any better than Christs’ followers.

  377. One would hope and expect that an organization that seems to be based around the Christian religion to act, not like, but better than the world around them. This is not what we find at NARTH. They display characteristics that should, and do, shame the entire Christian religion.

  378. NARTH is about the following

    They misrepresent, obfuscate, twist others’ words around and seem to have little desire for the truth. These are the values they display to the professional and non-professional alike. They are not a credible organization and I don’t think anyone in the professional world takes them seriously outside themselves. The same would go for the American College of Pediatricians.

  379. David,

    Anyways, to answer your question. Prior attempts to discuss similar changes at NARTH are met with defensiveness and blame projection. It is ideologically driven…which is understandable for a political organization (cf. Truth Wins Out); but less so for a scientific organization.

    What do you mean by “similar changes at NARTH”?

  380. One would hope and expect that an organization that seems to be based around the Christian religion to act, not like, but better than the world around them. This is not what we find at NARTH. They display characteristics that should, and do, shame the entire Christian religion.

  381. David,

    Anyways, to answer your question. Prior attempts to discuss similar changes at NARTH are met with defensiveness and blame projection. It is ideologically driven…which is understandable for a political organization (cf. Truth Wins Out); but less so for a scientific organization.

    What do you mean by “similar changes at NARTH”?

  382. David Blakeslee,
    Thank you – I agree with your comments and appreciate you answering my question about narth. It is kind of what I thought but since I wasn’t sure, thought I would ask.

  383. Ann,
    I am now catching up.
    First of all, I don’t know why things have to get so personal on these threads, it is demeaning and unnecessary. I think it’s purpose is to humiliate and to alienate. I think that is one of the reasons why some people take “vacations from this site.”
    The topic matter is difficult, the integration of faith systems, with the developing scientific data on Same Sex Attraction. All participants are courageous to undertake this here…some need to mock and humiliate; it undermines the whole purpose of this site.
    Anyways, to answer your question. Prior attempts to discuss similar changes at NARTH are met with defensiveness and blame projection. It is ideologically driven…which is understandable for a political organization (cf. Truth Wins Out); but less so for a scientific organization.

  384. Ann,
    I am now catching up.
    First of all, I don’t know why things have to get so personal on these threads, it is demeaning and unnecessary. I think it’s purpose is to humiliate and to alienate. I think that is one of the reasons why some people take “vacations from this site.”
    The topic matter is difficult, the integration of faith systems, with the developing scientific data on Same Sex Attraction. All participants are courageous to undertake this here…some need to mock and humiliate; it undermines the whole purpose of this site.
    Anyways, to answer your question. Prior attempts to discuss similar changes at NARTH are met with defensiveness and blame projection. It is ideologically driven…which is understandable for a political organization (cf. Truth Wins Out); but less so for a scientific organization.

  385. What good does NARTH do?

    They misrepresent, obfuscate, twist others’ words around and seem to have little desire for the truth. These are the values they display to the professional and non-professional alike. They are not a credible organization and I don’t think anyone in the professional world takes them seriously outside themselves. The same would go for the American College of Pediatricians.

  386. What good does NARTH do? Just curious…

    I think they provide an alternative for those who feel their options may be limited. They also provide an outlet and a platform for psychologists and shrinks who are disenchanted with APA or who feel APA does not represent the whole field. They have a right to their views, but of course, not to misquote or misrepresent others’ work.

  387. Even if it was an honest misunderstanding, Byrd should have checked with Collins before attributing claims to him he didn’t make. David Roberts had no trouble getting Collins to clarify the matter, why couldn’t Byrd?

    As a professional courtesy, yes, he probably should have done so.

  388. Debbie Thurman# ~ Mar 22, 2011 at 10:15 am
    “I felt (still do to some extent) that Byrd was deducing not incorrectly that Collins may think homosexuality might be alterable to some extent, regardless of what factors predispose one to it.”
    Even if it was an honest misunderstanding, Byrd should have checked with Collins before attributing claims to him he didn’t make. David Roberts had no trouble getting Collins to clarify the matter, why couldn’t Byrd?
    and this isn’t an isolated incident with NARTH. Mis-representing research is an endemic problem at NARTH.

  389. You’re seriously comparing the misrepresentations (intentional or not) of a supposedly professional agency to a comment made about you in the comments section of a blog article?

    Jon Trouten,
    A mis-representation is a mis-representation. A lie is a lie. To withhold a retraction, regardless how the subject or person is prioritized, still leaves a mis-representation and an untruth. And this speaks to the credibility and integrity of the person who is not retracting the comments, whether it be narth or David Roberts, or Dean Byrd.

    I would think that it would be in NARTH’s best professional interest to apologize for misrepresenting the work of other professionals. It’s not very professional to do otherwise.

    After the information David Blakeslee imparted, which was succinct and had substance, I absolutely agree with your second comment.

  390. Ann: You’re seriously comparing the misrepresentations (intentional or not) of a supposedly professional agency to a comment made about you in the comments section of a blog article?
    I would think that it would be in NARTH’s best professional interest to apologize for misrepresenting the work of other professionals. It’s not very professional to do otherwise.

  391. Has NARTH ever apologized for misrepresenting another’s work? I’m just curious because I don’t remember them doing this.

    Jayhuck,
    You are unique, as is Timothy, for apologizing when you have misrepresened someone or something, whether it was intentional or unintentional. I have not followed narth as many others have, so I do not know if they mis-represent, or apologize, if they do. I do know David Roberts has misrepresented me on this thread and I asked him to retract it – so far he has not. I don’t see this as any different from what he is accusing narth of.

  392. NARTH continues to fight the battles of the 1990s. Those days are over. I know activists stretch the truth a lot on both sides but NARTH should deal with what is now in science and not what was. My guess is that part of why they continue to bang on 1990s research is because those battles are relatively easy to win. The brain evidence for orientation is much more difficult for them, hence, you see them going on and on about genetics.

    Yes, I’m afraid that’s true. And whatever good they may be to do is sadly mitigated by this retroactive stance.

  393. Now, after Collins has weighed in on the article, it’s up to NARTH to apologize for the misunderstanding and move on.

    Has NARTH ever apologized for misrepresenting another’s work? I’m just curious because I don’t remember them doing this.

  394. How can you say he is quoting Collin’s accurately when the author himself is saying that he is not. Am I perhaps inferring incorrectly….. again?

    No, Warren cleared that up in his subsequent comment. I felt (still do to some extent) that Byrd was deducing not incorrectly that Collins may think homosexuality might be alterable to some extent, regardless of what factors predispose one to it.

  395. If Collins says he meant that homosexuality could be or is one of the human behavior traits excluded from his “virtually none of them,” then I guess we have to take him at his word. But Byrd could not have known that when he wrote his article, and his assessment was not outlandish at the time. Now, after Collins has weighed in on the article, it’s up to NARTH to apologize for the misunderstanding and move on.
    I don’t quite agree with the way you have written this, however:

    The passage on 262 is not about homosexuality, but if you include it in an article on homosexuality, saying it came from Collins book, then the impression is that Collins believes homosexuality is due to childhood experiences and free will choice.

    I don’t think that is the conclusion. I think the conclusion is more along the lines of Collins believing that those things may influence homosexuality, not predetermine them. If genes are not predeterminers, then why would we believe he thinks environment is?

  396. Debbie,
    I owe you an apology. The quote you listed was Collin’s, the interpretation of that quote is from Byrd, where he twists it just enough to be more NARTH-friendly.
    I don’t understand what you mean with this quote though:

    He quoted Collins accurately (I also just read those excerpts from his book) and in context, as far as I can see.The only problem I would have with it is the title, which is probably misleading.

    How can you say he is quoting Collin’s accurately when the author himself is saying that he is not. Am I perhaps inferring incorrectly….. again? 🙂

  397. You’re muddying the waters with those quotes above:
    Collins did not say this – Byrd did

    I know that. How did I state otherwise? You inferred incorrectly again. My, we do have a problem with that here, don’t we?

  398. I disagree with your assessment, Ken. I don’t find the first statement of Byrd’s you quote to be problematic. He could logically conclude what he did from Collins.
    And you are saying that Byrd inferred what Collins also says he did: “That certainly doesn’t imply, however, that those other undefined factors are inherently alterable.” Where did Byrd say or imply that any of the factors that may predispose one to homosexuality are “inherently alterable”? I infer from his article that a possibility of altering exists if Collins is right that heritability and other factors only predispose one to homosexuality rather than predetermine the outcome. Frankly, I am surprised that Collins would make the leap to put those words in Byrd’s mouth. And it does sounds as if he may have been egged on to do it.
    I also think Byrd is somewhat justified in his misgivings about Roberts’ understanding or opinions of NARTH. Did Collins really know much about NARTH before this flap began, I wonder?
    Please do not construe my attempts to get at the facts here as a position of support for NARTH across the board. But they do have a rightful place at the table.
    Lastly, is there anything that NARTH does that you approve of or find to be legitimate, David Roberts? Are you dispassionately examining the facts?

  399. Debbie,
    You’re muddying the waters with those quotes above:
    Collins did not say this – Byrd did:

    As Dr. Collins would agree, environment can influence gene expression, and free will determines the response to whatever predispositions might be present.

    In Fact most of Byrd’s article, beginning with the headline, is NARTH’s way of misrepresenting another person’s work so that it fits within their worldview and supports their agenda. They have a long and sad track record of doing this.

  400. To further clarify my position, I agree with Warren’s statement here:

    The first problem here is that the NARTH article does not consider what “science could and could not say about the genesis of homosexuality.” It did not focus on “whether not homosexuality could be explained by a simple biological theory.” Nor did it conclude that “evidence for a simple biological theory of homosexuality was lacking.” What it did do was briefly discuss estimates of heritability based on several twin studies.

    This explanation by NARTH was weaker than Byrd’s article.

    1. @Debbie – When you say their current explanation was weaker than Byrd’s article, I agree. They have been going from marginal to much worse. I know of no scientist, gay, straight, liberal or conservative or anywhere in between that believe same-sex attraction is directly and exclusively inherited. NARTH continues to fight the battles of the 1990s. Those days are over. I know activists stretch the truth a lot on both sides but NARTH should deal with what is now in science and not what was. My guess is that part of why they continue to bang on 1990s research is because those battles are relatively easy to win. The brain evidence for orientation is much more difficult for them, hence, you see them going on and on about genetics.

  401. Debbie Thurman# ~ Mar 22, 2011 at 8:30 am
    did Collins ever say this:
    “free will determines the response to whatever predispositions might be present.”
    or indicate in any way that he agrees with this sentiment? Because NARTH claims he does (the full quote from Byrd):
    “As Dr. Collins would agree, environment can influence gene expression, and free will determines the response to whatever predispositions might be present.”
    And if you read Collins response to David Roberts (in the PDF link Warren gives), you see his objection:
    “But the fact that the answer is not 100% also suggests that other factors besides DNA must be involved. That certainly doesn’t imply, however, that those other undefined factors are inherently alterable.”
    Byrd was wrong. Dr. Collins DOES NOT agree with him.

  402. For reference, here again are the two passages from Collins’ book appendix that I believe are in question:

    Evidence from twin studies does in fact support the conclusion that heritable factors play a role in male homosexuality. However, the likelihood that the identical twin of a homosexual male will also be gay is about 20 percent (compared with 2-4 percent of males in the general population), indicating that sexual orientation is genetically influenced but not hardwired by DNA, and that whatever genes are involved represent predispositions, not predeterminations (p. 260).
    There is an inescapable component of heritability to many human behavior traits. For virtually none of them is heredity ever close to predictive. Environment, particularly childhood experiences, and the prominent role of individual free will choices have a profound effect on us (p. 262).

    1. Debbie wrote:

      For reference, here again are the two passages from Collins’ book appendix that I believe are in question:
      Evidence from twin studies does in fact support the conclusion that heritable factors play a role in male homosexuality. However, the likelihood that the identical twin of a homosexual male will also be gay is about 20 percent (compared with 2-4 percent of males in the general population), indicating that sexual orientation is genetically influenced but not hardwired by DNA, and that whatever genes are involved represent predispositions, not predeterminations (p. 260).
      There is an inescapable component of heritability to many human behavior traits. For virtually none of them is heredity ever close to predictive. Environment, particularly childhood experiences, and the prominent role of individual free will choices have a profound effect on us (p. 262).

      Collins objected to juxtaposing these passages together as if he meant to include homosexuality in the phrase “many human behavior traits” with the subsequent reference to childhood experiences and free will choices. The passage on 262 is not about homosexuality, but if you include it in an article on homosexuality, saying it came from Collins book, then the impression is that Collins believes homosexuality is due to childhood experiences and free will choice. As Collins pointed out to Roberts, his words were juxtaposed to give a different meaning than he intended.
      When I read that section of his book, I did not take him to be opining on sexual orientation specifically when he wrote the conclusion page 262. There are many traits which are generally determined by a multitude of factors, but the set of factors are different for each factor. And once in place some are more alterable than others. When I read the Byrd article, I thought it was fairly tame but that he was making a case for free will in the development of homosexuality which I don’t understand, nor do I believe Collins meant that. And then lo and behold, Collins affirmed that impression.

  403. I confess I had not read Dean Byrd’s article until just now. It’s brief and a straightforward read. He quoted Collins accurately (I also just read those excerpts from his book) and in context, as far as I can see.The only problem I would have with it is the title, which is probably misleading.
    Now, would someone please tell me how from this one article of Byrd’s the problem Collins has with it could be anything other than who wrote it (i.e., a perceived political NARTH motive) and not what its content is? What am I missing?

  404. Even if it was an honest misunderstanding, Byrd should have checked with Collins before attributing claims to him he didn’t make. David Roberts had no trouble getting Collins to clarify the matter, why couldn’t Byrd?

    As a professional courtesy, yes, he probably should have done so.

  405. I really don’t see what the argument is … Dr. Collins .. who is the expert and author of the quoted/misquoted book is in disagreement with the smearing of his words as has already been clearly evidenced by his own letter on the topic. NARTH .. rather than listen to the author, has decided to smear someone else in the process and ignore the author/expert they are quoting/misquoting. Perhaps this is common in the blogosphere but is it not common (or at least shouldn’t be) for a Christian organization. My impression (from other threads) was that most of the people participating on this thread already find fault with NARTH for their unprofessional approach .. so … I really don’t see what there is to argue about.
    Dave

  406. Debbie Thurman# ~ Mar 22, 2011 at 8:30 am
    did Collins ever say this:
    “free will determines the response to whatever predispositions might be present.”
    or indicate in any way that he agrees with this sentiment? Because NARTH claims he does (the full quote from Byrd):
    “As Dr. Collins would agree, environment can influence gene expression, and free will determines the response to whatever predispositions might be present.”
    And if you read Collins response to David Roberts (in the PDF link Warren gives), you see his objection:
    “But the fact that the answer is not 100% also suggests that other factors besides DNA must be involved. That certainly doesn’t imply, however, that those other undefined factors are inherently alterable.”
    Byrd was wrong. Dr. Collins DOES NOT agree with him.

  407. I confess I had not read Dean Byrd’s article until just now. It’s brief and a straightforward read. He quoted Collins accurately (I also just read those excerpts from his book) and in context, as far as I can see.The only problem I would have with it is the title, which is probably misleading.
    Now, would someone please tell me how from this one article of Byrd’s the problem Collins has with it could be anything other than who wrote it (i.e., a perceived political NARTH motive) and not what its content is? What am I missing?

  408. Mary,

    Besides, no matter how many times someone tells me I read the bible incorrectly and have assumed an implication where none it exists…

    The difference here is that we can actually speak with the author of the work and ask him what he meant. Which is what happened. With the Bible, we don’t really have that opportunity.

  409. It’s a figure of speech, Ann. What I mean is that you and Mary pretty reliably bring the crazy to the discussion – aka. the irrational nonsense – and then Mrs Thurman can be relied upon to drive the last nail into the coffin of reason.
    Before you go all victim on us you might stop to read over this thread in which several very intelligent posters tried to take you by the hand to walk you through the argument but you would have none of it, you insisted the balloon was red when everyone with eyes to see could see it was blue. So boo hoo. I’m the big bad man and you’re the pretty princess. Nighty night. Sleep tight.

  410. Wow. Ann and Mary bring the crazy then Thurman brings up the rear.

    Stephen,
    What do you mean when you say “bring the crazy” and “brings up the rear”?

  411. Mary, dear, I want them to be remembered because they are true

    Okay. You shall be known as a man for a quick observation that is niethr complete nor thorough and in step with the many that you niether took the time nor the care to discover otherwise.

  412. I have Collins book and know what he said. However, the issue is still that the dispute is actually between Dr. Collins and NARTH with Collins being the expert on both genetics and what he meant when he wrote what he wrote.
    If Dean Byrd simply interpreted him incorrectly, then when Collins expressed concerns about it and issued his statement, it seems to me that the thing to do would be to correct the article or even just add the statement to the article as an addendum as Byrd did the comment from Steve Simon. Just add it on and let the reader decide.
    Instead, they have accused XGW of a false charge and continued in other venues (Amer College of Peds and the recent LDS article in the SLC paper) to make the same interpretation.

  413. Mary: If you told me X, and then I said that you implied Y, and then you said, no, I did not mean to imply Y but rather X and then I kept telling people that Mary said X but saying X implies that she means Y, you would not like it. Furthermore, X would still not be Y, no matter how convinced I was that X=Y

    If this were the case, I would make one statement about my work and let the rest of the blogosphere have their antics. Read the person’s work or get out of the argument. Besides, no matter how many times someone tells me I read the bible incorrectly and have assumed an implication where none it exists – I continue to do so. Seems Collins left the subject wide open.

  414. wow, some people here really REALLY want NARTH’s misrepresentation to be “correct.”

    Actually, I can give a rats ass about who is right. I, however – instead of taking sides did go and purchase Collins’ book and have started reading it. From that point, I will make a decision as to what he wrote. Emily – maybe you should do the same?

  415. Wow. Ann and Mary bring the crazy then Thurman brings up the rear.
    This thread is a perfect paradigm of why we can’t have a reasonable discourse about matters that concern some of us nearly.
    Because some of us are dealing from the crazy deck.

    Do you want me to remember these remarks the next time we have a discussion or should I just dismiss them?

  416. wow, some people here really REALLY want NARTH’s misrepresentation to be “correct.”

    A perfect example of the inference of something not actually stated. And not attributed to any real person, either. That’s what I’m talking about. (Warren meant to say he would be inferring Y rather than Mary implying Y in her statement from his example.)
    Lest you perceive me as “one of those people, Emily,” I have no real feelings either way about Collins or Byrd, NIH or NARTH. I do hold to the belief that one ought to be very careful in the use of previously published material, scientific or literary or whatever. That’s what permissions are for, when they are acknowledged. Copyrights are also violated all day long in the blogosphere, FWIW.

  417. wow, some people here really REALLY want NARTH’s misrepresentation to be “correct.” Instead of so desperately trying to get science to back up the belief that gay people are not hard-wired and can change their sexual orientation, why not just stick to religious belief?? Isn’t that supposed to be “greater” than science, anyway?

  418. Wow. Ann and Mary bring the crazy then Thurman brings up the rear.
    This thread is a perfect paradigm of why we can’t have a reasonable discourse about matters that concern some of us nearly.
    Because some of us are dealing from the crazy deck.

  419. this is an egregious crime in the scientific world

    Exactly, and we are talking about a group (NARTH) that desperately wants to be considered professional and scientific. Those are the apples, regardless of how the oranges are doing.

  420. Mary: If you told me X, and then I said that you implied Y, and then you said, no, I did not mean to imply Y but rather X and then I kept telling people that Mary said X but saying X implies that she means Y, you would not like it. Furthermore, X would still not be Y, no matter how convinced I was that X=Y.

    LOL. While this is an egregious crime in the scientific world, it is business as usual, every day, in the blogosphere. But of course, only the kettle is black, not the pot.

  421. I have read Ann’s posts on this blog for several years. David, your comments are based on sarcasm and ignorance. Ann writes what she means and does not mince words or try to. Sure sounds like you are trying to mix up her words into something they are not. Take what she writes at face value – nothing malicious.

  422. David,
    Why don’t you do the right thing and retract what you said about me, lest you put yourself on the same level as what you accuse narth of.

  423. David Blakeslee – Thanks for providing that background.
    What is strange about this situation is that correcting the original article would not require a huge fix. Simply placing Collins words about free will in their proper context and noting that they did not specifically relate to same-sex attraction would help. Also, noting that free will does not imply choice of attraction would help. All Collins discussed was genetic factors but did not opine on how these factors related to the behavioral expression of sexual orientation or the ability to use free will to do anything about them. When he mentioned childhood factors, Collins was not referral specifically to homosexuality. He expressed no opinion on that topic.
    If NARTH is really interested in being scientific, then they will do these easy steps and follow that with balanced articles about the research undermining reparative drive theory — since of course they are so interested in causal factors.

  424. and wrapping it all up by closing down the conversation.

    Yes, all conversation ceases when I say that. Ann, being sarcastic at times on this blog is far better than beating one’s head against a wall. You believe anything your heart desires. If you can have read this blog for years and not be aware of NARTH’s duplicity, there really is no hope that you will in my opinion.
    Perhaps YOU should get off your duff and write Dr. Collins, Byrd or someone instead of pigeonholing the work of those who do.

  425. You are arguing from a position that has no merit. The only conclusion is that you wish to believe NARTH in spite of the evidence, therefore no more evidence will change your mind. Continued debate will be useless.

    Just look at how you are doing what you accuse narth and David Byrd of – you are distorting what I am saying, making assumptions that become your truth, actually lying that I wish to believe narth, and wrapping it all up by closing down the conversation.

  426. I have two very good friends who will not be named who have attempted corrections through private channels with no success.

    David Blakeslee,
    Thanks – this is all I needed to know. I appreciate this information and trust you. Do your friends know what the hesitation is to retract the statement?

  427. Ann, what more do you need? What would NARTH have to do before you realized what they are about?
    Dr. Collins writes a book. Byrd takes quotes from that book and intertwines them with his own and others statements. Dr. Collins says they are using his words to say something he did not intend, i.e. changing the meaning. Repeat. Repeat. Repeat with emphasis on NIH website, directly showing disdain for groups misrepresenting his work for their own purposes.
    Byrd has not been banished to a dungeon, he could have said anything in response that he wanted. He could have contacted Dr. Collins. He could have responded to me or to Warren. None of this happened, and really, the only opinion that matters here, as was stated, is the person whose work has been, by his own statement, misused.
    You are arguing from a position that has no merit. The only conclusion is that you wish to believe NARTH in spite of the evidence, therefore no more evidence will change your mind. Continued debate will be useless.

  428. This might be easier to read:
    Because at the end of the day they’re still…[theorists]…stubbornly trying to shore up their outdated pet theory with arguments to the authority of a mainstream scientist whose prestige they envy but whose thinking they neither accept nor even necessarily understand.

  429. Checking in…
    Such painful moments for Christian’s who treasure truth and science.
    Good Work David Roberts and Warren.
    To Ann and Mary and others: This is the style of Narth and Throbert gets it right:

    Because at the end of the day they’re still… [theorists]…stubbornly trying to shore up their outdated pet theory with arguments to the

    authority of a mainstream scientist whose prestige they envy but whose thinking they neither accept nor even necessarily understand.

    Many Christians are taught to deal with conflict in private first, in keeping with scriptural demands. This would be preferable…but it is not NARTH’s style.
    I have two very good friends who will not be named who have attempted corrections through private channels with no success.
    It makes me so sad, because good Christians seeking to live within Biblical directives are being led ideologically by some NARTH leaders.

  430. Teresa,
    I agree and still think there is something more to this story. When biases become more important than the truth, or seeking the truth, then all we have is what we had before – subjective interpretations that support biases. We can all assume why Dean Byrd or narth hasn’t retracted their initial interpretation or we could seek truth by asking him. Perhaps there is something we don’t know.

  431. Ann,

    Wow, really – Francis Collins is the only one who matters when there are two people involved?

    I believe what Dr Throckmorton was trying to say is that in terms of the original article and what it really meant, the author is the only one who matters.
    NARTH has a long history of misrepresenting other peoples’ studies.

  432. The main thing is that NARTH is trying to ride the coattails of the NIH director, in the hopes that some of his scientific prestige will rub off on them.

    Although — cough — I detect the same problem in the headline and lede of the story at XGW:

    NARTH’s David Pruden Continues Attack on Noted Geneticist Francis Collins
    The National Association for the Research and Therapy of Homosexuality (NARTH) is once again attacking the veracity of noted geneticist Dr. Francis S. Collins.

    It appears to me that Pruden was very clearly attacking the veracity of XGW and David Roberts — and in trying to spin this as an attack on Collins, David Roberts is likewise attempting to hitch a ride on the coattails of Collins and his prestige as NIH director.
    Both NARTH and XGW need to let their own arguments stand or fall on their merits, and stop trying to make the authority and fame of a “noted geneticist” do the heavy lifting for them.
    But David, in saying that you’re acting just a bit like NARTH in this example, I certainly don’t mean that XGW is in general comparable to NARTH — all I mean is that the “argument to authority” ends up harming the credibility of whomever is offering the argument. It’s just not a good tactic.
    And in my opinion, a better headline might’ve been something like:
    NARTH Ignores Collins’ Rebuke About Out-of-Context Quoting, Opts to Play Shoot-the-Messenger with XGW.

  433. @Ann and Mary,
    NARTH has seen Francis Collins’ response. They need only correct their interpretation, which would be the proper thing to do.
    One need not attribute malice or willful deceit to Byrd’s/NARTH’s initial interpretation. However, the responsible, honest, charitable thing to do on NARTH’s part is to correct their statement, after being publicly shown their ‘error’. They shouldn’t have to have their hand held to act properly.
    If they’re the ‘scientific’, proper group they espouse to be, they need to act accordingly.
    A similar incident happened with Dr. Lisa Diamond’s findings.

  434. Throbert,
    I do understand. It just seems to me that if Francis Collins and Dr. Throckmorton are taking issue with a perception that Dean Byrd is willfully distorting what Francis Collins wrote to advance narth, that he be given the chance to clarify his intreptation of what was written.

  435. Don’t you think it is fair and just to give Dean Byrd the same opportunity you gave Francis Collins – to clarify what he said and why he said it?

    For the record, we did long ago. We got crickets. Dr. Collins responded.

  436. I asked Dr. Collins for his view twice, once originally in 2007, and again after Greg Quinlan further mangled his words in 2008. When Quinlan claimed the exchange was not genuine, I asked Dr. Collins to CC Warren, knowing that he had some standing in those issues. He did so, and then in 2010 finally wrote his own, probably final, comment on the NIH website, where it remains. That was in response to the ACPed letter, but it’s all basically the same issue, NARTH was a major force in that.

    Further, I thought it might be helpful to ask them to come to a difinitive and mutual clarification as to what Francis Collins said and what he meant by it, specifically addressing the issue of homosexuality, so further speculation can be put to rest.

    As Warren said, there is no reason to do this — Dr. Collins has made his point abundantly clear. I honestly don’t think Dr. Collins would see any value in communicating with NARTH, certainly not now. He’s a busy guy, and NARTH doesn’t seem to have any standing in the greater scientific community. To be blunt, a real scientist is unlikely to care what they think unless, as here, NARTH tries to appropriate one of their own views.
    Besides, how do we know Bryd (or Pruden) and Dr. Collins haven’t communicated? Perhaps NARTH just didn’t like what he had to say privately, any more than they do his public comments. As was said earlier, they have never made an honest correction for as long as I can remember.

  437. this is an egregious crime in the scientific world

    Exactly, and we are talking about a group (NARTH) that desperately wants to be considered professional and scientific. Those are the apples, regardless of how the oranges are doing.

  438. There is no need to ask Dean Byrd what Francis Collins meant to say.

    ok, that is not what I said – I suggested that, since you had an issue with how Dean Byrd is interpreting what Francis Collins said, you could ask him directly if this was his intention, and if so, what was his reasoning for doing so.

    I clarified that months ago with the only guy that matters – Dr. Collins.

    Wow, really – Francis Collins is the only one who matters when there are two people involved? Don’t you think it is fair and just to give Dean Byrd the same opportunity you gave Francis Collins – to clarify what he said and why he said it? Seems more logical than confirming a bias with only one side of the story. If Dean Byrd says he willfully distorted the truth to advance his organization and himself, then you will know. If he gives you a viable explanation that is acceptable to Francis Collins, then you will have the truth. Better yet, if you asked them both to determine, together, independent of anyone else, what was said and how to truthfully interpret it and then mutually make a written statement that verifies it, then we will really know the truth – and so will they. Anyone who wants to continue the contention will look really, well, not too smart.

    The only ones who seem to be unable to grasp it are the folks at NARTH.

  439. Ann wrote:

    I do not know Dean Byrd, nor have I ever communicated with him. I am not sure, however, I thought you knew both he and Francis Collins. If so, it seems that it would be in character for you to contact Dean Byrd as you did Francis Collins and ask his reasoning for doing what you are interpreting/accusing him of. Perhaps you have – I am just not sure. Further, I thought it might be helpful to ask them to come to a difinitive and mutual clarification as to what Francis Collins said and what he meant by it, specifically addressing the issue of homosexuality, so further speculation can be put to rest.

    There is no need to ask Dean Byrd what Francis Collins meant to say. I clarified that months ago with the only guy that matters – Dr. Collins. The only ones who seem to be unable to grasp it are the folks at NARTH.

  440. Ann# ~ Mar 21, 2011 at 12:56 pm
    “Instead of all this confirmation bias and the he said/he said, and all the subjective interpretations, why not suggest and/or allow Dean Byrd and Francis Collins to address each other regarding this issue, come to a written determination what the truth is, and then let them mutually share that with the rest of us.”
    In all the time I’ve followed NARTH, I have never seen them publish/post a retraction. Certainly not of the form: “whoops sorry we made a mistake/mis-interpreted something.” At best, they would removed the page and not say anything about it.

  441. Ann and Mary, here’s the problem with the dialogue you propose between Byrd and Collins:
    Suppose Byrd conceded that his NARTH article had been “sloppy” (D’oh!) in quoting Collins, and as a quid pro quo, Collins conceded that NARTH’s misrepresentation of his words may not have been intentional or malicious, but was simply, well, “sloppy reporting.”
    What do think NARTH would be saying on its website and newsletters the next day? I daresay the headline would be something like “NIH Director Admits NARTH Did Not Lie”.
    The part about the citations of Collins being “sloppy” might be mentioned in fine print at the bottom, along with a mea culpa from Byrd — “oopsie, Pobody’s Nerfect!”
    But what people remembered from the story would be “Collins exonerates NARTH.”

  442. Instead of all this confirmation bias and the he said/he said, and all the subjective interpretations, why not suggest and/or allow Dean Byrd and Francis Collins to address each other regarding this issue, come to a written determination what the truth is, and then let them mutually share that with the rest of us

    Great idea!

  443. I do not know Dean Byrd, nor have I ever communicated with him. I am not sure, however, I thought you knew both he and Francis Collins. If so, it seems that it would be in character for you to contact Dean Byrd as you did Francis Collins and ask his reasoning for doing what you are interpreting/accusing him of. Perhaps you have – I am just not sure. Further, I thought it might be helpful to ask them to come to a difinitive and mutual clarification as to what Francis Collins said and what he meant by it, specifically addressing the issue of homosexuality, so further speculation can be put to rest.

  444. Ann – You would have to take that up with Dean Byrd. David Roberts and I both went to the source and he said Byrd rearrange his words in such a way that it changed his intended meaning. There really is no debate about Collins meant since he has already told us. The issue is with NARTH to accept it.

  445. Throbert – NARTH is still NARTH, true. But if they had posted Collins accurately, I probably would not have posted about it, or if I did, it would have been to warn that apocalypse was near.

  446. Instead of all this confirmation bias and the he said/he said, and all the subjective interpretations, why not suggest and/or allow Dean Byrd and Francis Collins to address each other regarding this issue, come to a written determination what the truth is, and then let them mutually share that with the rest of us.

  447. Mary: If you told me X, and then I said that you implied Y, and then you said, no, I did not mean to imply Y but rather X and then I kept telling people that Mary said X but saying X implies that she means Y, you would not like it. Furthermore, X would still not be Y, no matter how convinced I was that X=Y.

    Warren: I would suggest that the inaccuracy is really beside the point, or at least it’s only a secondary matter. The main thing is that NARTH is trying to ride the coattails of the NIH director, in the hopes that some of his scientific prestige will rub off on them.
    Thus, even if by some accident or miracle NARTH had managed to quote Collins in a non-misleading way, it still wouldn’t really be to NARTH’s credit.
    Because at the end of the day they’re still homeopaths or Lysenkoists stubbornly trying to shore up their outdated pet theory with arguments to the authority of a mainstream scientist whose prestige they envy but whose thinking they neither accept nor even necessarily understand.
    So if they had quoted Collins in a way that wasn’t at all misleading, Collins might still have reason to get annoyed at NARTH and say to them, “Look, it’s patently obvious that you jive turkeys would barely pass an undergrad-level genetics course and you’re only quoting from my book because I’m the NIH director. So knock it off!”
    (And to be totally clear, I’m not comparing ALL “change therapy” to Lysenkoism, the ideologically-driven bogus science that wrought havoc on Soviet agriculture; I’m specifically talking about Nicolosi’s one-size-fits-all Freudian model.)

  448. and wrapping it all up by closing down the conversation.

    Yes, all conversation ceases when I say that. Ann, being sarcastic at times on this blog is far better than beating one’s head against a wall. You believe anything your heart desires. If you can have read this blog for years and not be aware of NARTH’s duplicity, there really is no hope that you will in my opinion.
    Perhaps YOU should get off your duff and write Dr. Collins, Byrd or someone instead of pigeonholing the work of those who do.

  449. I have two very good friends who will not be named who have attempted corrections through private channels with no success.

    David Blakeslee,
    Thanks – this is all I needed to know. I appreciate this information and trust you. Do your friends know what the hesitation is to retract the statement?

  450. Mary, if you read Warren’s post, you will see that is not the case. What NARTH does significantly changes the meaning of Dr. Collin’s words. This is why he has gone to such lengths to make that clear.
    The real mystery here is why Pruden is addressing a four year old issue now.

  451. Mary: If you told me X, and then I said that you implied Y, and then you said, no, I did not mean to imply Y but rather X and then I kept telling people that Mary said X but saying X implies that she means Y, you would not like it. Furthermore, X would still not be Y, no matter how convinced I was that X=Y.

  452. Checking in…
    Such painful moments for Christian’s who treasure truth and science.
    Good Work David Roberts and Warren.
    To Ann and Mary and others: This is the style of Narth and Throbert gets it right:

    Because at the end of the day they’re still… [theorists]…stubbornly trying to shore up their outdated pet theory with arguments to the

    authority of a mainstream scientist whose prestige they envy but whose thinking they neither accept nor even necessarily understand.

    Many Christians are taught to deal with conflict in private first, in keeping with scriptural demands. This would be preferable…but it is not NARTH’s style.
    I have two very good friends who will not be named who have attempted corrections through private channels with no success.
    It makes me so sad, because good Christians seeking to live within Biblical directives are being led ideologically by some NARTH leaders.

  453. Ann,

    Wow, really – Francis Collins is the only one who matters when there are two people involved?

    I believe what Dr Throckmorton was trying to say is that in terms of the original article and what it really meant, the author is the only one who matters.
    NARTH has a long history of misrepresenting other peoples’ studies.

  454. The main thing is that NARTH is trying to ride the coattails of the NIH director, in the hopes that some of his scientific prestige will rub off on them.

    Although — cough — I detect the same problem in the headline and lede of the story at XGW:

    NARTH’s David Pruden Continues Attack on Noted Geneticist Francis Collins
    The National Association for the Research and Therapy of Homosexuality (NARTH) is once again attacking the veracity of noted geneticist Dr. Francis S. Collins.

    It appears to me that Pruden was very clearly attacking the veracity of XGW and David Roberts — and in trying to spin this as an attack on Collins, David Roberts is likewise attempting to hitch a ride on the coattails of Collins and his prestige as NIH director.
    Both NARTH and XGW need to let their own arguments stand or fall on their merits, and stop trying to make the authority and fame of a “noted geneticist” do the heavy lifting for them.
    But David, in saying that you’re acting just a bit like NARTH in this example, I certainly don’t mean that XGW is in general comparable to NARTH — all I mean is that the “argument to authority” ends up harming the credibility of whomever is offering the argument. It’s just not a good tactic.
    And in my opinion, a better headline might’ve been something like:
    NARTH Ignores Collins’ Rebuke About Out-of-Context Quoting, Opts to Play Shoot-the-Messenger with XGW.

  455. @Ann and Mary,
    NARTH has seen Francis Collins’ response. They need only correct their interpretation, which would be the proper thing to do.
    One need not attribute malice or willful deceit to Byrd’s/NARTH’s initial interpretation. However, the responsible, honest, charitable thing to do on NARTH’s part is to correct their statement, after being publicly shown their ‘error’. They shouldn’t have to have their hand held to act properly.
    If they’re the ‘scientific’, proper group they espouse to be, they need to act accordingly.
    A similar incident happened with Dr. Lisa Diamond’s findings.

  456. Honestly, I get tired of the he said, she said game. I can see both sides to this issue. Personally, I don’t like the idea that someone’s remarks are being embellished but I can’t say that those embellishments are not implied by his own writing. It’s just that he did not say them directly.

  457. Don’t you think it is fair and just to give Dean Byrd the same opportunity you gave Francis Collins – to clarify what he said and why he said it?

    For the record, we did long ago. We got crickets. Dr. Collins responded.

  458. I asked Dr. Collins for his view twice, once originally in 2007, and again after Greg Quinlan further mangled his words in 2008. When Quinlan claimed the exchange was not genuine, I asked Dr. Collins to CC Warren, knowing that he had some standing in those issues. He did so, and then in 2010 finally wrote his own, probably final, comment on the NIH website, where it remains. That was in response to the ACPed letter, but it’s all basically the same issue, NARTH was a major force in that.

    Further, I thought it might be helpful to ask them to come to a difinitive and mutual clarification as to what Francis Collins said and what he meant by it, specifically addressing the issue of homosexuality, so further speculation can be put to rest.

    As Warren said, there is no reason to do this — Dr. Collins has made his point abundantly clear. I honestly don’t think Dr. Collins would see any value in communicating with NARTH, certainly not now. He’s a busy guy, and NARTH doesn’t seem to have any standing in the greater scientific community. To be blunt, a real scientist is unlikely to care what they think unless, as here, NARTH tries to appropriate one of their own views.
    Besides, how do we know Bryd (or Pruden) and Dr. Collins haven’t communicated? Perhaps NARTH just didn’t like what he had to say privately, any more than they do his public comments. As was said earlier, they have never made an honest correction for as long as I can remember.

  459. There is no need to ask Dean Byrd what Francis Collins meant to say.

    ok, that is not what I said – I suggested that, since you had an issue with how Dean Byrd is interpreting what Francis Collins said, you could ask him directly if this was his intention, and if so, what was his reasoning for doing so.

    I clarified that months ago with the only guy that matters – Dr. Collins.

    Wow, really – Francis Collins is the only one who matters when there are two people involved? Don’t you think it is fair and just to give Dean Byrd the same opportunity you gave Francis Collins – to clarify what he said and why he said it? Seems more logical than confirming a bias with only one side of the story. If Dean Byrd says he willfully distorted the truth to advance his organization and himself, then you will know. If he gives you a viable explanation that is acceptable to Francis Collins, then you will have the truth. Better yet, if you asked them both to determine, together, independent of anyone else, what was said and how to truthfully interpret it and then mutually make a written statement that verifies it, then we will really know the truth – and so will they. Anyone who wants to continue the contention will look really, well, not too smart.

    The only ones who seem to be unable to grasp it are the folks at NARTH.

  460. Ann wrote:

    I do not know Dean Byrd, nor have I ever communicated with him. I am not sure, however, I thought you knew both he and Francis Collins. If so, it seems that it would be in character for you to contact Dean Byrd as you did Francis Collins and ask his reasoning for doing what you are interpreting/accusing him of. Perhaps you have – I am just not sure. Further, I thought it might be helpful to ask them to come to a difinitive and mutual clarification as to what Francis Collins said and what he meant by it, specifically addressing the issue of homosexuality, so further speculation can be put to rest.

    There is no need to ask Dean Byrd what Francis Collins meant to say. I clarified that months ago with the only guy that matters – Dr. Collins. The only ones who seem to be unable to grasp it are the folks at NARTH.

  461. Ann – You would have to take that up with Dean Byrd. David Roberts and I both went to the source and he said Byrd rearrange his words in such a way that it changed his intended meaning. There really is no debate about Collins meant since he has already told us. The issue is with NARTH to accept it.

  462. Mary: If you told me X, and then I said that you implied Y, and then you said, no, I did not mean to imply Y but rather X and then I kept telling people that Mary said X but saying X implies that she means Y, you would not like it. Furthermore, X would still not be Y, no matter how convinced I was that X=Y.

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