Monday, April 06, 2015

Being who they are

Does as person's sexual orientation constitute who they are? I am a lot of things. I am a Christian, I like the
Cardinals and the Suns, I teach at ASU West, I am a Democrat, etc.  And I happen to be a heterosexual. People who think there is something wrong with homosexual conduct say that disapproving of homosexual conduct isn't the same as hating homosexuals. In response, defenders of homosexuality will them say "You say you accept homosexuals as people, but you are opposed to them being who they are." But doesn't that assume that your sexual orientation is constitutive of who you are in ways your other activities are not. Is being gay or being straight an essential property of a person? 


It is interesting when conservative Christians say that they only oppose homosexual activity and not homosexuals, they are criticized. Sometimes this is a matter of Christians not living up to the "hate the sin, love the sinner" rhetoric. But sometimes it is suggested that this response doesn't make sense because being gay is "who they are."Yet the same people who say "this is who they are" will sometimes say that hate Christianity but not Christians. Why do these two things mix? 

18 comments:

im-skeptical said...

People are raised to be Christians, so to some degree, it is who they are. Yet it is possible to decide that you will no longer be a Christian. On the other hand, we don't get to choose our sexual orientation, and we can't just decide to change it. Most of us are heterosexual, and we never faced a decision to become heterosexual. It just happened that way, and we have no choice in the matter.

B. Prokop said...

Shame on you, Victor! How dare you imagine that tolerance ought to be a 2-way street? Haven't you learned by now to stop engaging in such egregious thoughtcrime? So, you say you teach at ASU West... well, the thought police will soon fix that! Can't have you poisoning the minds of the next generation, who must all be taught to think in lockstep, and to be on the Right Side of History (meaning, of course, the side with the biggest clubs). You'll be sent to a reeducation camp where they'll beat that politically incorrect religion out of you (it'll be for your own good, you know), while forcing you to bake cakes with a certain, shall we say, "fashionable" message on them.

Jezu ufam tobie!

B. Prokop said...

THIS is an excellent article summarizing exactly just what's at stake here.

Jezu, ufam tobie!

Papalinton said...

There's little at stake here. Just society adjusting to the norms by which it seeks to protect those that some Christians target as the latest of scapegoats onto whom they can vent their pious ire. Homosexual scapegoating happens to be in vogue. But the much larger majority of the community, including so many christians are saying, "Enough is enough, leave gays well alone". And that is just as it should be in a maturing, growing, educated community.

im-skeptical said...

From Bob's (utterly stupid) article:

"Indiana’s law did nothing but apply a common principle: If I want to print anti-abortion pamphlets that a printer doesn’t like, the printer can decline my job. If Aryan Nations wants to hire me to make white supremacist pamphlets for them, I can decline their job."

You see, Bob, nobody was EVER forced to print hate speech that they don't agree with. And that is NOT what discrimination laws are about. The bigot who wrote this article is just whining. "Poor, persecuted me. I am being forced by the state to do business with people that I hate." As if selling the same goods and services to all is equivalent to being made to print hate speech that you disagree with. But it's not. Here is another example of the twisted logic of bigots.

Please stop lying about your own bigotry. Everyone can see it for what it is, except you.

B. Prokop said...

It is critically important that anyone discussing this topic listen to and understand what C.S. Lewis warned us about concerning chronological snobbery and unthinkingly following the fashion of one's time. For those who don't care to actually read what Lewis had to say on the subject, HERE is a fairly decent summary of his thought in a lecture by Peter Kreeft (especially beginning at about 5 minutes in).

Jezu, ufam tobie!

im-skeptical said...

Sure, Bob. You go back to the time when black people and other ethnic undesirables were enslaved, and gay people and atheists were punished by death. I'll stick the progress we've made on those issues, even if Lewis calls it the "fashion of our time".

Ilíon said...

Am I the only one who wonders how long it will be before B.Prokop has to denounce *himself* as being an advocate of "Hell's Own Governing Constitution"?

B. Prokop said...

Careful, Ilion. I still got issues with you!

But to your larger point. Things change, and you'd be a fool not to adapt to changed circumstances. Up until maybe a year ago, I tried (boy did I try!) to be studiously, strictly neutral on the whole same-sex marriage issue. True, I wasn't personally for it, but what the heck?, I thought. Who's it gonna hurt? Well, THIS was who it was going to hurt.

The intolerance of the supposedly "tolerant", and all in the name of tolerance... oh, the irony of it all. And the utter abandonment of reason on the part of its partisans. Instead of a rational dialog, we have screams of "Bigot!" and "Hate!" before a word is even said, effectively cutting off all chance of any discussion.

I'm sorry, but I just gotta repeat myself here. How can the supposed "defenders of reason" be so irrational? How can people shrieking "Tolerance!" be so totally intolerant of the slightest dissenting view? I don't get it! Can they not see how completely contradictory their positions are? How can they on the one hand claim they don't want to discriminate in business, whilst simultaneously practicing the ultimate in discrimination - that of driving small, long-standing mom and pop enterprises out of business? How can people supposedly defending fair hiring practices without the slightest qualm instigate the firing of individuals simply for engaging in what they declare to be thoughtcrime? Whatever happened to the First Amendment? Again, I just don't get it.

Hypocrisy, hypocrisy, hypocrisy!

Jezu ufam tobie!

im-skeptical said...

"Well, THIS was who it was going to hurt."

That's right, Bob. Every time the victims of bigotry have the temerity to complain about it, the bigots turn around and shout "How intolerant you are". Don't worry, the Catholic church isn't about to fire anyone for teaching the church's bigotry.

B. Prokop said...

HERE is the future of America. May God have mercy on our souls.

Jezu ufam tobie!

toddes said...

And yet, Skep, you are oblivious of your own anti-religious bigotry.

im-skeptical said...

"And yet, Skep, you are oblivious of your own anti-religious bigotry. "

And what kind of bigotry have I displayed? I don't refuse to deal with religious people. I don't discriminate against them in any way. All I do is call out bad behavior and bullshit when I see it. And it doesn't matter to me who is doing it. I'm an equal opportunity bullshit debunker.

Ilíon said...

B.Prokop: "HERE is the future of America. May God have mercy on our souls."

The reason that that is a credible possible future for America is because a significant number of the people who "believe in God" are nonetheless God-haters.

Your average person who "believes in God" may hate explicit atheism ... but he also hates open Christianity, and especially the preaching of it: he's fairly willfully ignorant of what Christianity does and does not say about God, and man, and sin, and judgment, and he wants to keep it that way. He *knows* that many of the behaviors in which he wishes to indulge are immoral, and he knows that Christianity teaches so, and why. But he wants to pretend that he doesn't know, and the only way to maintain that pretense is to somehow get the Christians to shut up.

So, what's going on today is that there is an implicit alliance or partnership between an organized group of people (the leftists) and a much larger unorganized grouping of people (the "I'm spiritual but not religious" sorts), both groups despising the other, for the purpose of silencing a third group (Christians and Jews).

=========
"Careful, Ilion. I still got issues with you!"

Have you *ever* noticed that bothering me?

Ilíon said...

VR: "Does as person's sexual orientation constitute who they are? ..."

One of the means by which everyone can know -- not that there is anyone who can *honestly* claim to not know this already -- that the "I was [or “they were”] born this way ... therefore, you're a "hatemonger" if you criticize what I do with my dick and/or bodily orifices" pseudo-argument is *never* offered in good faith is to test how those who spout it react when the very same (ahem) argument is turned around.

Honestly! We *all* know that the “tolerant” folk will never allow the following as a valid argument or rationale, even though it’s the very same “argument” they constantly make -- “I/we were both this way [that is, being repulsed by homosexual acts] … therefore, you're a "hatemonger" if you criticize how I react when being forced to know what some “gay” fellow does with his dick and/or bodily orifices, or if I don’t want him (or lesbians/feminists) in positions of authority over my children.

im-skeptical said...

"One of the means by which everyone can know -- not that there is anyone who can *honestly* claim to not know this already -- that the "I was [or “they were”] born this way ... therefore, you're a "hatemonger" if you criticize what I do with my dick and/or bodily orifices" pseudo-argument is *never* offered in good faith is to test how those who spout it react when the very same (ahem) argument is turned around."

Like this.

Papalinton said...

THIS has a distinct ring of persecution complex about it.

im-skeptical said...

You know what they used to say about soldiers: The troops aren't happy unless they're griping. Christians are much the same. They aren't happy unless they're bitching about being persecuted.