Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Choice and Homosexuality

Today's discussion on the radio concerned homosexuality and the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy. The basic rationale presented was that homosexuality was not appropriate behavior, because the majority does not think it is.

While the military has its "discipline" to consider, I agree that "anything goes" is inappropriate for military behavior! I respect those that serve in our military because of their commitment to the American value of liberty. But, because our country values liberty; how do we fairly evaluate  homosexuality? And what does homosexuality have to do with discipline, choice, or commitment, or how do these values influence how we understand homosexuality?

The argument that homosexuality has a "right" to minority status does "not hold water" to some because of "nature's nature". These argue that ethnic identity cannot be used equatably with homosexuality because one's ethinicity is not a choice. I agree that choice is an ultimate distinction and ultimate value when it regards what is appropriate or inappropriate.

Biblicists wouldn't even "go there", as the text bans such behavior, and one shouldn't be allowed "choice" about such matters. There are no compromises on accepting, condoning, or considering such behavior. But, others are not so opinionated. Others who want to hold to a "middle way", of choice, choose to uphold self-discipline, or denial of certain expressions of sexual desire. This argument holds validity because we want to uphold self-discipline,  and fidelity. But is denial of sexual expression appropriate to the homosexual alone, or are there other means to judge appropriate or inappropriate behavior? Is there only "one position" that is  allowable?  How does one judge sexual expression?  Does nature alone guide our judgments? Then, why don't we hold to nature is all of our judgments and not inspired texts? Is there diversity in nature? Are humans only sophisticated animals, who can choose, and don't behave only by instinct? I think so.

Choice is as much about commitment and fidelity to one's chosen partner, as it is about "equal rights" and society's protection. The choice to commit one's life to faithfulness in a given area is an important value to uphold, as it is foundational to integrity, and trust. It is social contract. The right to sexual expression with my chosen partner, means that I forgo others. Social order is maintained, and yet, we have been "liberal" in our understanding of the homosexual. Isn't this really what should control our arguments, what is best for society and why? And shouldn't it be based on rationale, not appeals to irrational beliefs about "God"?

Opponents argue that homosexuals have a promiscous lifestyle which would undermine societial stability for raising children, and limiting sexually transmitted diseases. Although some homosexuals are promiscuous and some spread disease, so do heterosexuals. The issue is not homosexuality, but choices about lifestyle and the values of family and fidelity.

Some argue that homosexual homes are not conducive for child-rearing as it is an inappropriate role model. But, the question should be what represents an appropriate role model? Is one's ability to procreate the only consideration when one argues against homosexuality? What about the heterosexual that cannot have children? Or those that have gotten beyond child-bearing years? Do these have any "right" to sexual expression with their partner? Or is sex only about procreation?

Shouldn't we uphold fidelity to one's partner, as an ultimate value in America, whether hetereosexual or homosexual because this is what benefits society and the children raised in families?

Self-control, character, choice, and commitment are what should be considerations when we evaluate "rights", society and human flourishing.

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