Thanks to David C. for that piece by Corvino on the APA petition. It strikes me as far more rational than anything else I've seen from the pro-petition side. Rather than respond to it as a whole, I would like to make a note of one comment he makes.
I also agree that, while there’s a difference between orientation and conduct, the two cannot be teased apart as easily as some religious conservatives would like. Who we are is intimately connected with what we do—especially when it comes to deep personal relationships. Those who profess to “love the sinner but hate the sin” often distort that deep connection.
I admit that it is difficult to hate the sin and love the sinner. If you oppose the passion of my life, or my deepest and most powerful intimate relationship, how can you claim to love me? I understand the force of these comments.
But in order to have a civilized society, you have to hate the sin and love the sinner. You have to associate with people whose actions you disapprove of and whose beliefs you disagree with heartily. And if you want to have a philosophical society, and not just a secularist echo chamber, you have to be able to have respectful exchanges with people on the other side. You have to be very reluctant to draw that conclusion that says "If that's what you believe, then we just can't talk at all."
Advocates of a Dawkins-style New Atheism seem to be moving in that direction with respect to belief in God. They seem to me to want to remove religious faith from the sphere of serious discourse, to laugh it out of the intellectual marketplace. This is a dangerous course.
I believe that GLBTs make a serious mistake when they shut people out who don't approve of them. There is a dialogue and debate on gay issues that has to take place within communities of faith. It is to their advantage to respect the integrity of those traditions while staking out their own positions in response. This is especially important for GLBTs of faith, and there are many of those. They, too, benefit in the long run if they can learn to hate the sin (which to them would be the sin of thinking homosexuality to be a sin) and love the sinner.