The nature versus nurture debate resurfaced locally recently with the anti gay voice of Sociologist Reverend Peter Espeut declaring without any solid physiological proof that Gays are made and not born and that the word homophobia was used to abuse Christians as hate speech . As a gay man at forty years old Reverend Espeut and his supporters including those who will be marching today June 23, 2013 in Kingston and Montego Bay supposedly against homosexuality and the legalization or decriminalization of buggery as several legal challenges are lined up and a promised buggery review by the present government wishes to tell me how I feel and what I always knew that I liked boys from a very early age, I was not made into this nor forced by anyone via homo paedophile circumstances. It is regrettable however that some persons have been inappropriately exposed to sex or initiated forcefully by persons who can be diagnosed by the proper professional as having a deviant attraction to prepubescent persons or children but that is totally different from homosexuality which is not considered a disorder by the requisite expertise in psychology.
A recent position paper (try to stomach it) by the Christian Brethren Assemblies Jamaica (CBAJ) in 2012/3 said among other things the following: (my two cents bracketed)
The Scriptures prescribe and promise God’s blessing on life-long heterosexual union in marriage, and chastity in all other circumstances. They are uniform throughout in forbidding the practice of homosexuality.
Same-sex attraction cannot be consummated within God’s design for human sexuality. It is possible by God’s grace for those with same sex attraction to live a chaste life. Choosing to indulge in any sexual acts in thought or deed is sinful. The Scriptures, however, affirm the value of normal and healthy godly friendships. (Proof is needed here CBAJ and gay Christians are an anomaly?)
Any lifestyle obsessed with and/or dominated by personal sexual fulfilment whether heterosexual or homosexual, is contrary to God’s law. (Which book(s) says this?)
Homosexual acts deny the God-designed complementary nature of the sexes and do not have the potential to be procreative. (An embryo can be created without copulation but from stem cells of two persons of the same sex)
The causes of same-sex attraction appear to be multi-factorial and may include developmental, psychosocial, environmental and biological factors. There is no credible evidence at this time that same-sex attraction is genetically determined. (The INAH3 hypothalamic Simon LeVay 1991 study proves that there is biological difference in gay and straight men, gay sheep studies etc, more below)
Acting on homosexual attraction is voluntary (as is heterosexual attraction as well). Claims of genetic or environmental determinism do not relieve individuals of moral responsibility for their sexual behaviour. (That is why there is and ought to be privacy and consent)
Homosexual behaviour can be changed (ask the Ex-Gay movement that). There is valid evidence that many individuals who desired to abstain from homosexual acts have been able to do so. (With sometimes disastrous consequences, abstinence from homosexual acts does not mean that the individual’s sexual orientation has changed)
Some homosexual acts are physically harmful because they disregard normal human anatomy and function (name them please). These acts are associated with increased risks of tissue injury, organ malfunction, and infectious diseases. These and other factors result in a significantly shortened life expectancy. (prove this, typical HIV is a gay disease ploy here, while there may be some tissue damage from hard penetrative anal sex said tissue damage also occurs with vaginal penetrative sex as well when the necessary conditions are not there such as lube or her own moisture from being aroused, there is always some “damage” done after any penetrative sex act to the particular orifice whether vaginal or anal, what I choose to do anatomically is my body my business who are you the CBAJ to interfere in that decision or to raise to the level of law proscriptions to impede my private decision to act?)
Among those involved in homosexual acts, there is an increased incidence of drug and/or alcohol dependence, compulsive sexual behavior, anxiety, depression, and suicide. (As a forty year old gay man IN JAMAICA I have not seen this happen in my community in large numbers no less than heterosexuals who also have their issues to deal with)
Homosexual relationships are typically brief in duration (confusing exploitive same sex unions with monogamous ones and they do exist). Homosexual behaviour is destructive to the structures necessary for healthy marriages, families and society. (True in a sense as church groups like yours force men to operate on the down low to regularize themselves, case in point the pastor and deacon found in a church in Manchester having sex)
Men who commit homosexual acts have a high incidence of promiscuity, child molestation, and sexually transmitted infections. Homosexual behaviours burden society with increased medical costs, increased disability, and loss of productivity. (Lies, typical conflation of consenting same gender sex with abuse and paedophilia the latter is a diagnosable disorder homosexuality is NOT)
Homosexual behavior can be self-propagating. Some homosexual groups and individuals engage in active recruitment. A child who is sexually molested has an increased likelihood of later engaging in homosexual acts. There is also an increased incidence of homosexual activity among children raised by same sex couples. Adoption into such environments puts children at risk. (MORE Lies and misunderstanding, typical conflation of consenting same gender sex with abuse and paedophilia the latter is a diagnosable disorder homosexuality is NOT, several children RIGHT HERE IN JAMAICA have been raised by same sex parents and they are no less damaged or made gay as you put it here, again more fear-mongering and paranoia)
Legalizing or blessing same sex marriage or civil unions is harmful to the stability of society, the raising of children and the institution of marriage. If the only criterion for marriage were mutual consent or commitment, there are no grounds to prohibit polygamy, polyandry or incestuous unions. (No one has asked yet for same sex unions to be legal, heterosexual marriages divorce rates are high so who is really “destroying the family?” / laws already cover polygamy and incest so to suggest that decriminalizing buggery when those laws are separate is a piece of intellectual dishonesty or sheer ignorance on the part of knowledge of our laws)
CBAJ will not support any member in leadership position declaring themselves homosexuals or who confesses to living such a life style. (Outcasts! but didn’t Jesus come for the outcasts? So they must stay down low if they are? What a frightening stance from a religious group?)
CBAJ therefore does not support our marriage officers conducting same- sex unions (who asked? And if such laws were in place the church will not be forced as now obtains to marry persons it can be done by a justice of the peace or other marriage officers and there are many Pastors who are quite willing to do so and in fact have performed civil union ceremonies here many of which I have witnessed. Heterosexuals are already doing a good job of breaking down the family take a look at our local figures of divorce above)
CBAJ does not support sexual abuse of any kind. (As does most right thinking individuals)
CBAJ does not support sexual misconduct of any kind (As does most right thinking individuals hence pedophilia is a diagnosable disorder that can be dealt with homosexuality is NOT and is natural as I live and breathe)
The Christian community led by CBAJ must respond to the complex issues surrounding homosexuality with grace, civility, and love. (I agree but with love and understanding not condemnation and instilling shame with reparative therapy but this very position paper is hypocritical and loaded with ideological contradictions)
Christian doctors in particular must care for their patients involved in homosexual behavior in a non-discriminating and compassionate manner, consistent with biblical principles. (Not with reparative therapy as the course of action or supposed restraint of what may be defined as typical homosexual behavior when actions can be restrained by choice orientation cannot)
Anyone struggling with homosexual temptation should evoke neither scorn nor enmity, but evoke our concern, compassion, help, and understanding. Elders and leadership must not be quick to condemn but must strive always for healing and restoration. All are innocent until proven guilty, in this context if a man/woman sins, let him so examine himself before God. God is always the final judge. As long as we have no evidence we will have to leave people to their conscience and to God. (Another ideological contradiction spotted here - Your line item above said – “CBAJ will not support any member in leadership position declaring themselves homosexuals or who confesses to living such a life style.” So if one of your own came out how would he/she be dealt with when in judging them you won’t support them …….. Read out of the church?)
The Christian community must condemn hatred and violence directed against those involved in the homosexual behaviour. (Gratuitous tolerance, true tolerance is what is needed not some flowery statement to look good, accept persons and difference as they come not what suits the CBAJ and forcing same sex attracted persons to go underground even within the CBAJ and indeed other churches in order to regularize themselves)
The Christian community must help society understand that homosexuality has grave spiritual, emotional, physical and cultural consequences. Christians should oppose legislative attempts to grant special rights based on sexual behavior or to equate homosexual relationships with heterosexual marriages. (When no gay rights groups asked for gay marriage rights?)
The Christian community and especially the family must resist stereotyping and rejecting individuals who do not fit the popular norms of masculinity and femininity. Also, it is important for parents to guide their children in appropriate gender identity development. (Gratuitous tolerance and hypocrisy)
For children who are experiencing gender identity confusion, we must provide appropriate role models, and therapy if needed. The Christian community must encourage and strongly support all those who wish to abandon homosexual behaviour The Christian community should oppose the legalization of same sex marriage and/or blessing and adoption into homosexual environments. (Confusing gender identity issues with homosexuality gender confusion amounts to gender dysphoria or moving towards transgenderism)
God provides the remedy for all moral failure through faith in Jesus Christ and the life changing power of the Holy Spirit. (For physical healing or personal growth etc but not for orientation change not when God already made me so)
So we see the continued ignorance and conflation between same gender sex and abuse/pedophilia these idiots do not understand that abuse is abuse whether the situation is same sexed or opposite sexed is immaterial, sexual attraction of any adult to a child is a deviant diagnosable disorder as per DSM, homosexuality is not and must never be conflated with abuse which is the common mistake driving this lunacy from the church.
The psychological experts knowing all this whether secular or Christian have deviated from the guidelines as stated in the official guidance manual for this being the Diagnostic Statistical Manual, DSM (fifth version released May 2013) choose to suggest homosexuality is being forced on us and or reparative therapy is to be used to “change” homosexuals to heterosexuals even when warnings have been official sounded by experts in the field that such attempts at change can and have had disastrous consequences for persons targeted in this practice. Aversive conditioning as was practiced in the US at reputed clinic in California in the late eighties has been suggested as well to make the change effective yet not caring about the subject and that somehow spiritual impact can be brought to bear also to make the change permanent. Healing is one thing in my mind as from ailment and disease but a total radical psychological revolution when maybe God wanted me and others like me gay is another matter altogether.
Why would I have been born with this attraction in the first place being so natural to me?
Why are there other species around us displaying innate homosexual tendencies?
Why would I choose something that cause me harm or even my life?
In the face of mounting research in animals as well as humans we are seeing more and more possibilities of some causes relating to innate homosexuality with physiological and biological differences presenting themselves which leave many hold on to the naturalness of this phenomenon. The closure of the main reparative therapy or Ex Gay Ministries in the United States just days ago and the subsequent apology from its founder is the clearest indication yet that messing around with person’s sexual orientation is not on and can have consequences. The repeated stories of inappropriate behaviours by leading Ex-Gay proponents and testimonies by participants tell that it does not work. I too in my early years of realising my sexual orientation questioned God about it and struggled for years in my teens especially with it with no proper psycho social or LGBT affirming sources around to help, so like many others I have had to bump and crash to where I am today. I too prayed incessantly and went into fasting searching in various denominations for “change” as felt the dirty feeling as well and even in the church it was there I found others like me hiding amidst its walls and straight acting to get approval. It was not until the past twenty years of my life and experiences that have centred me including being arrested for the abominable crime of buggery (with no proper proof) consenting adults caught in the wrong place at the wrong time and although the case never went to full trial and adjourned sine die it proved to me that we need to remove the buggery law as it now stands.
What is so difficult about having privacy in my own home and making a decision with another consenting person?
Even if the studies or work of scholars who are gay affirming stands as a testament that researcher’s ideological commitments can coexist with good scholarship it is the essence of the study and methodology that must come or called into question to prove or disprove intellectual dishonesty. A criticism of many anti gay theologians and academics is that Many of the major social and biological researchers and respected authors whose work is cited regularly are gay or lesbian persons, including scholars like Gregory Herek, Simon LeVay, Dean Hamer, Susan Cochran, Lee Beckstead, Douglas Haldeman, Lisa Diamond, Jack Drescher, Ritch Savin-Williams, and others, who else are to set out to prove or disprove the issue of homosexuality than these persons when opposers are just hell bent on remaining just that opposers. In 1957, Evelyn Hooker demonstrated that homosexual persons do not always manifest psychological maladjustment. In 1973, the American Psychiatric Association removed its designation of homosexual orientation per se as a mental illness. The 1986 APA Supreme Court Amicus Curiae brief for Bowers v. Hardwick stated "The first major challenge to the illness model came in 1957 when Dr. Evelyn Hooker determined that homosexual and heterosexual men could not be distinguished from each other on the basis of standard psychological tests, and that a similar majority of the two groups appeared to be free of psychopathology. . . . Extensive psychological research conducted over almost three decades has conclusively established that homosexuality is not related to psychological adjustment or maladjustment. Commentators who argue that there is no biological contribution to the causation of sexual orientation (for instance, that it is all choice) are arguing the indefensible what is clear is that there are so many different avenues for such causes that there is no definitive reason yet determined at best. The research points to a clear contribution of biological factors to sexual orientation. Biology also clearly appears to play a part, but to what extent? There are three major biological causation paradigms driving conversation and research in the causation of homosexual orientation: the maternal stress theory, the fraternal birth order (“older brother”) theory, and the genetic theory. The maternal stress theory posits that maternal stress during pregnancy causes hormonal disturbances in the womb resulting in incomplete masculinisation of male fetuses, which in turn results in homosexuality. Sociologist Lee Ellis developed a full-fledged theory of maternal stress replete with various hypothesized causal mechanisms, and subsequently produced survey evidence suggesting that mothers of homosexual persons did indeed report higher stress during pregnancy than mothers of heterosexuals.
Check out Simon Levay in his own words on his 1991 hypothalamus - IHAH3 autopsy study in an interview with Truthwinsout.
The continued use of flawed studies from the US based NARTH – National Association for the Reparative Therapy of Homosexuality is another disturbing trend as the CBAJ also quoted a series of them in their position paper even the old Spitzer 1975 paper which read: "Like most psychiatrists," says Dr. Robert L. Spitzer, "I thought that homosexual behavior could be resisted, but sexual orientation could not be changed. I now believe that's untrue--some people can and do change."Acosta, F., (1975) Etiology and treatment of homosexuality: review. Archives of Sexual Behavior. 4:9-29. yet we saw his own renunciation of that position some time ago. This shows the dishonesty therein and how behind the times when it comes to the scientific community’s research and conclusions on the subject. Quoting old 1970s studies showing reparative therapy as working when no follow up evidence has been shown in the vast numbers of them that the subjects remained “un-homosexual” and what is SSAD, same sex attraction disorder? Anyone can skew data to suit their agenda there maybe some guilt on the pro - LGBT agenda side too but I know what I know and I know what I feel.
The other issue of outward displays of same sex attraction being a means by which to “impose” homosexuality is arrant nonsense, why is it that when Jamaicans go to overseas territories they have no choice but to respect difference and see these same ODA and pass by but here it has some imposing imperative hence the fear and paranoia? The original combative position of the St James Ministers’ Fraternal and their planned march against supposed decriminalization of buggery has changed claiming they are now not against homosexuals but the ills of the nation including the legalizing of buggery in the upcoming Javed Jaghai/AIDSFREEWORLD Supreme Court matter slated to commence June 25, 2013. The hypocrisy from the Fraternal is glaring seeing AIDSFREEWORLD also has planned on Monday June 24 a stand of their own.
My prayer is that all this confusion and unneeded paranoia end soon and allows persons to live their truths in this country it is partly because our inability as people generally to really live as who we really are why we have some of the major challenges on the ground.
I am born this way.
A message to the CBAJ, the JCHS and LCF and others with their false dichotomies
From: The Ethics of Genetic Research on Sexual Orientation Author(s): Udo Schüklenk, Edward Stein, Jacinta Kerin, William Byne Source: The Hastings Center Report, Vol. 27, No. 4 (Jul. - Aug., 1997), pp. 6-13 Published by: The Hastings Center Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/3528773
"Research into the genetic component of some complex behaviours often causes controversy, depending on the social meaning and significance of the behaviour under study. Research into sexual orientation-simplistically referred to as "gay gene" research-is an example of research that provokes intense controversy. This research is worrisome for many reasons, including the fact that it has been used to harm lesbians and gay men. Many homosexual people have been forced to undergo "treatments" to change their sexual orientation. Others chose to undergo them to escape discrimination and social disapprobation. But there are other reasons to worry about such research. The very motivation for seeking an "origin" of homosexuality reveals homophobia. Moreover, such research may lead to prenatal tests that claim to predict for homosexuality. For homosexual people who live in countries with no legal protections these dangers are particularly serious.
“Homosexual people have in the past suffered greatly from societal discrimination. Historically, the results of biological research on sexual-al orientation have been used against them. We have analysed the arguments offered by well-intentioned de-fenders of such work and concluded that none survive philosophical scrutiny. It is true that in some countries in Scandinavia, North America, and most parts of Western Europe, the legal situation of homosexual people has improved, but an adequate ethical analysis of the implications of genetic inquiry into the causes of sexual orientation must operate from a global perspective. Sexual orientation researcher should be aware that their work may harm homosexuals in countries other than their own. It is difficult to imagine any good that could come of genetic research on sexual orientation in homophobic societies. Such work faces serious ethical concerns so long as homophobic societies continue to exist. In so far as socially responsible genetic research on sexual orientation is possible, it must begin with the awareness that it will not be a cure for homophobia and that the ethical status of lesbians and gay men does not in any way hinge on its results."
We also need to be mindful of the correlation and applicability of these studies in our context and society and maybe begin to develop our own data. We see the overuse of a Lancet study by the JCHS head Dr Wayne in the prevention of disease spread imperative in the HIV is a gay disease ploy.
The World Health Organization and its affiliates have come out against reparative therapy, or what is also called conversion therapy. In fact, the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) has recommended to governments, professional associations and all civil society that they inveigh against reparative therapies, saying clinics offering them should be "denounced and subject to adequate sanctions".
As former PAHO director Dr Mirta Roses Periago said on International Day Against Homophobia last year, "Since homosexuality is not a disorder or a disease, it does not require a cure. There is no medical indication for changing sexual orientation." see more from Ian Boyne here: Culture Clash On Homosexuality
Peace and tolerance