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January 08, 2009

Comments

Really anything, a disease or choice that violates the intended use or purpose of a thing is a problem. If the only criteria to be used is "born that way" then why try and treat anything that one was born with? In fact the born that way argument really doesn't work in the sense that the sexual functions are meant for procreation. Homosexuality is non-procreative and therefore in this context is a birth defect. This description seems harsh but only because we have been so condtioned that our sexuality is for our use intended for our pleasure and actually has little or nothing to do with procreation. Because sexual preference doesn't seem to debilitate in the other areas of life we really do not put any weight on it being abnormal.

I think with modern medical technology as it is advancing this may end up being a "choice" after all and a rather tyrannical one. Because if in fact there is a gene and a gene therapy as a corrective, the "choice" is going to end up being made by the parents and I'm sure the cultural pressure not to correct will be enourmous.

Hi,

I'd like to see some discussion on this question: Is every homosexual act immoral regardless of circumstance?


Ron

Hi Ron, in what circumstance would you propose that the moral value of this immoral act becomes moral? I cant think of one.

Brad B

You mean like, having sex with a guy at gunpoint?

Hi Brad B,

OK. You can't think of one. Does that mean there are none?

Hi Strongsector,

Interesting name. I assume you mean the one holding the gun is coercing the other. I think adding coercion to this situation makes it worse morally rather than better, don't you?

Ron

"OK. You can't think of one. Does that mean there are none?"

I think you have a point here. It does not mean that there are none, but it moves the likelyhood in that direction. If more people chime in that they can't think of one...then that likelyhood grows stronger. If no one chimes in, it might make it stronger as well, since that might mean that they can't think of one either.

Haha, why thankyou. I ment, rather i was asking him if he would consider, having sex with another man at Gunpoint (IE 'male rape'), would that fall into his criteria.. Or like, prisonsex, which im sure their have been times where inmates did so out of fear rather than genuine homosexual desire

Lol@us posting at the same time

In any case, I dont think their is an instance where true homosexuality would be moral, seeing that a homosexual act in itself would have to come from genuine male desire

anything outside of that wouldent neccessairily be a homosexual act

Taken to its extreme, I cannot possibly conjure up an instance where guysex would be for any moral purpose. Infact im pretty sure their isint one.

"anything outside of that wouldent neccessairily be a homosexual act"

Whoops, let me rephraze that

Anything outside of genuine homosexuality simply isint homosexuality. For obvious reasons, and if you werent homosexual (or just in sexual chaos), you probably wouldent be interested in homosexual acts, which are never moral

OK, I see: So far, no circumstances could make it moral.

Are there circumstances, then, that would make it more moral? Or less immoral? ... if you prefer to think of it that way.

Ron

I agree, thats really the only alternative

I see we have a problem with coming up with situations where homosexual acts are made "more moral." Why don't we just use another "immoral" thing and bring the example over.

Let's work with something simple first:
a German lying about hiding Jews to protect them from being killed: a heterosexual performs homosexual acts so that a murderer does not enter the children's room.

While the act may be a removal from that which is "natural," I would think that because the intent was for a greater good-saving the lives of the children-we can say that the act was maybe even good.

Let's try something harder:
The euthanasia of a loved one according to the demands of that person: The committing of homosexual acts because the other's demand (the individual was in mental anguish because of the lack of homosexual companionship).

I think this is more to the heart of your question. Here we see love as the removal of pain and suffering. In a very trivial sense, yes, it is loving. But love, as understood by Christians (revealed to us by the Bible and confirmed by the workings of the world), has many more aspects to it than just wishing for the immediate happiness of the individual.

So I really sympathize with the concerns, desires, and even the pain and suffering that homosexuals have. It is as real a longing as a mother in a war torn part of Africa longs for food for her child and questions God's goodness. As real a concern as a parent crying over the deathbed of their child dying of cancer and wondering where was God.

Homosexuals, in the same way, often wonder why they "aren't normal." Why God did that to them. They didn't do anything.

But all of these things, these evils, when viewed in a perspective that believes that there is a God, and that God has spoken on these things, can realize that there is something more. I'm no good with words so I would just refer you to read on the problem of evil on this website.

Augustine,

You *are* good with words. Thanks very much. I like the idea of raising other questions and transferring what you learn back to the original. The idea of engaging in a homosexual act (as a heterosexual?!) as a humane comfort is very imaginative.

When I first said asked if people would discuss "Is every homosexual act immoral regardless of circumstance?" I didn't suggest any because I curious where some others might go. Your post is the payoff.

How about two men or women hoplessly stranded on a desert island? The two persons on Earth? What about those circumstances?

When you mention "a perspective that believes there is a God" you touch what might be called the Ultimate Hypothetical Circumstance: Is every homosexual act immoral if God doesn't exist?

Ron

Thanks for the kind words, I am still working on my gracefulness so it takes me a while to come up with words.

Is any homosexual act immoral if God doesn't exist?

Well, when we are looking at moral systems, the most popular one today is the minimalist moral system* - if no one is hurt, it can't be wrong. So with this moral system, homosexual acts, if both people are consenting individuals, is essentially good and moral. This is a man made system of morality that I believe is created in the absence of a God. However, I do not think that it is being intellectually honest.

*In this system, morality sneaks in through the back door by the assumed idea that pain is evil therefore the opposite is good. When I am being intellectually honest, I can see that this is circular reasoning. But that is besides the point.

I'll just make an outrageous comment that I know will rub non-theist the wrong way.

Without a God who sets a moral standard, moral standards are illogical.

How does one come to understand morality without sneaking in morality through the back door (without assuming that pain is bad, that hurting another individual is wrong, that self-control is a virtue, that loyalty is good)?

All systems of morality make these assumptions, Christianity tells us the source.

I've posted my own thoughts

here

Hi Augustine,

Evolution built morality into human nature.

I'll go farther. Given the rest of human nature - especially our social nature and our intelligence - morality is not just logical: it is logically necessary. The human species would not be human without morality.

Here's why. Let's imagine we take the morality out of a human being. Actually, we don't have to imagine that: We have sociopaths and psychopaths. (The terms are nearly synonymous and while 'sociopath' emphasizes environmental causes and 'psychopath' points more to genetics, nature and nurture always interact. I'll just use one or the other from now on.). You can read detailed descriptions of these people elsewhere but it boils down to this: They are normal humans minus morality. They are antisocial, amoral. They are contradictory beings: an antisocial social animal.

Occasionally psychopaths do attain power or wealth - overcoming the inherent disadvantages of the disorder with some special talent or by sheer luck. But lots of them live unsuccessful and shortened lives. Their promiscuity can lead to numerous offspring. Whether this on average outweighs the obvious disadvantages of having such a parent so that psychopathy increases their evolutionary fitness is unclear.

What's clear is that psychopaths cannot form the any of the kinds of communities that morality allows us other humans to form and maintain. Nor can they ever get beyond a certain fraction of the overall population because our vigilence would increase meaning the advantages of cheating would decrease. They can only succeed as cheaters in communities of built and maintained by those who live by the rules. Just imagine taking 10,000 of the world's psycho- and sociopaths and plunking them down into their own city.

So it's humanity without morality that's illogical not, as you say, moral standards without God.

Ron

Hi Ron

The point is, morality has no "real" grounding without God.

Why would it be "good" for a society to function?

Or why is it good for a being to evolve or survive?

Todd

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