Thursday, August 07, 2008

Mormon Meddling

Right about now I'm feeling that if Temple Square in Salt Lake was swallowed up in a giant sinkhole and all the church leaders with it -- I wouldn't shed a tear. These stuffy old men who believe they have a monopoly on what God wants/thinks have decided that denying civil marriage equality should be Christians' number one priority (screw the poor and homeless). Think the church isn't inserting itself DIRECTLY into the political process? Read this from an LDS family's blog. They were expecting a visit from the stake president (a church bigwig, usually overseeing 3-5 "wards," similar to a parish), and weren't sure what to expect. Turns out (horror, shock, surprise) it was money: "it was actually about making a contribution– a rather sizable contribution. He already had a figure in mind...(He) left a donation form for which asks you to submit, among other things, your name, and the name of your ward and stake...My wife wanted to know how they came up with the customized figure and stewed over the notion that they probably reviewed our tithing records...(He) said they’d be getting back lists of the donors and how much they paid. I didn’t like the idea of my faithfulness being gauged so. I also didn’t like contributing to a coalition of churches, many of which I suspect are Huckabee fan clubs. Plus, let’s face it, it was a huge chunk o’ change they were asking from us."

I imagine this sort of thing is being repeated thousands of times all across the stake.

Pull their tax exemption. Now. These are civil, political matters they are messing with. If the churches can't keep their fingers out of state matters, I don't see why we should cut them ANY slack in terms of taxation.

Individual church members are also doing their part to ensure that discrimination becomes the law of the land. Earlier I posted about famous Mormon science fiction author Orson Scott Card basically threatening the violent overthrow of the government (treason, anyone?) if Prop 8 isn't passed. Now he continues his science fiction efforts with this post purporting to debunk the scientific consensus that sexuality is biologically-based, as opposed to a conscious choice. (Even the church itself doesn't go that far.)

Card's ridiculousness seems to know no bounds. There is much fallacious thinking and illogic in the piece, as well as plain old cruelty, but I will focus on just a few of his comments:

"If science says that homosexuality is natural, uncontrollable and harmless, why would any decent person -- especially one who knows and likes, or even loves, a number of homosexuals -- wish to deprive them of something they desire so much?

Here's why:

1. Science does not say that gays have no choice whatsoever.

2. Science does not say that homosexuality harms no one, and that homosexual liaisons are as valuable to society as marriage.

3. It is not unfair to give unique preference to monogamous heterosexual relationships, if that preference and those marriages benefit all of society -- including homosexuals or potential homosexuals."

He never goes on to back up any of these positions. He simply hangs them out there as facts and then moves on.

He talks about a psychological study from 1957 - but never mentions that it is more than a half-century old, even though its conclusions were that gay men were as psychologically well-adjusted as straight men. Quite an accomplishment given the climate back then, I'd imagine.

Then he throws this little gem, in reference to twin studies that clearly show a level of genetic heritability of sexual orientation: "The study does not allow for the possibility that the physical appearance of the subjects might have played a role. If seduction, molestation or other sexual trauma contributes to homosexuality, and if those are influenced by the perceived attractiveness of the subject to a molester, seducer or rapist, then the greater physical resemblance between identical twins may account for some of the results."

First, IF "seduction, molestation or other sexual trauma contributes to homosexuality" -- any proof that it does? But second, huh? I'm not sure I get this -- if the twins are both cute, it's more likely they will BOTH be molested? What about less attractive twins? They'd both be equally unattractive, no? The twin study says nothing about attractiveness.

"Countless homosexuals record their "awakening" to homosexuality in the form of rape, molestation or seduction;" Countless? None that I've ever met have said this.

"In my opinion, all homosexuals should be enraged at the notion that of all human beings, only homosexuals cannot control their sexual behavior by conscious choices. This dogma implies that they are less than human. Yet this is precisely what the normalizers claim: "They can't help it."" No more than left-handers can't help being left-handed.

"We can all agree that no one can help desiring what they desire. Desires come unasked for and often from sources we do not understand.

But every other human impulse, natural or dysfunctional, can be recognized and controlled, at least to a degree. We expect alcoholics to be able to refrain from driving when drunk. We expect pedophiles to keep their hands to themselves. We expect aggressive males to curb their need to fight with perceived rivals. We expect people whose mental illnesses are only contained by drugs to take those drugs.

We expect heterosexual males -- males who are expressing the very drive that leads to reproduction of the genes, and which in other primate species is often expressed as rape -- to be able to recognize that "no means no" at every stage of wooing and coition.

In other words, our society right now says that everybody but homosexuals must curb whatever innate desires are perceived, by our society, as harmful or undesirable, regardless of how natural or evolutionarily productive they might be, or how strongly they are felt."

Oy gevalt. Drunk drivers and pedophiles have victims. A rapist (which is what he seems to be referring to with his "no means no" comment) has victims. Even a philandering husband as a victim. People in consensual relationships (like same-sex couples who are married or plan to) do NOT have victims. Like his church, Card expects all gay people to remain celibate. The married man has his wife, the alcoholic may drink as long as he doesn't drive, but we need to keep it in our pants to assuage HIS sense of morality? Give me a break.

1 comment:

Amanda said...

Orson Scott Card is full of hot air. Anyone who takes him seriously (and I know a lot of people do) are woefully ridiculous. How in the world do people take seriously "facts" that have no basis at all? He just throws them out like they are common knowledge, based on nothing or on one thing he's's disgusting.