Monday, August 27, 2007

Are Homosexual Unions unnatural?

dedicated to the lovely members of Opine Editorials.

So let me get it straight. The reason most of you are against same sex marriage is because homosexual unions are “a perversion of human nature,” void of any procreative abilities. Here is what led me to that conclusion, before you quickly refute this premise:

Jose—“ If you allow same-sex “marriage” there is no rational way to deny a marriage license to any relationship that meets the legitimate criteria for marriage, that is, the conjugal relationship of man and woman with its procreative potential.”

“Please try to understand Jane Know that homosexual practices are a perversion of human nature.”

“They are being brainwashed into imagining there can be some sort of safe anal sex. You are clearly ignorant of the medical findings related to such practices. Lesbian practices, though not as physically harmful are nevertheless disordered as they also misuse the sexual organs and prevent women from forming natural procreative relationships.”


Renee—“ Our sexuality is rooted in our reproductive elements. We don't even know if we might procreate but children do not stay children and they become adults.”

“It is our responsibility as persons engaging in sexual activity to honor our procreative elements and acknowledge we are opening ourselves to life”

“It isn't that marriage is just about procreation, the problem lies with those who want to believe that marriage has nothing to do with procreation”

“Homosexual behavior can NEVER be brought to fulfillment (sic) of the conjugal act, it always trys (sic) to twist itself and downplay the goodness that sexuality and reproductivy (sic) brings to humanity, because in the begining (sic) we're all created from the act of sex.”

Marty—“ Sex feels good for the same reason food tastes good. And sure, sugarless bubblegum does taste very good -- but there's no there there.”

Fitz—“ The insistence that she can pleasure women as good as any man, that heterosexual intercourse is the equivalent of same-sex acts, and the stubborn refusal to accept the term “natural” at face value – (procreative in kind) – in the obvious way its presented and explained. All very telling.”


Here is my reasoning as to why you are all wrong.

The fact that you all are using the same sex relationships/sex/couplings/marriages “are unnatural” argument shows that the charge is highly idiosyncratic and has little, if any, explanatory force. It does little to show what it actually wrong with it.
Basically you are assuming that homosexual unions are wrong because they violate the function of genitals, which is supposedly only to make babies. This is wrong for many reasons. For one, there are lots of body parts that have lots of different functions. Just because some one activity can be fulfilled by one organ, this activity does not condemn the organ to only that activity. For example, the mouth’s main function is for eating. Yet, we also use it to kiss, to chew gum, to blow bubbles, and more. Yet these actions surely are not deemed “wrong” by you. So, the use of genitals for reasons other than procreation (achieving intimacy and ecstasy) surely can not be wrong either.

Unless you propose to find the “correct” function of each organ, and then abide by those set of rules, it doesn’t follow to say that genitals are to be used only for procreation. thus, your descriptive morality doesn't really follow in a society that places more value on normative morality.

Sex organs seem well-equipped to give their owners immense pleasure. Pleasure is often a good thing in moderation, and not innately evil. And since the genitals are full of nerve endings, it would seem that they were designed, if designed by someone, for the purpose of producing pleasure, as well as procreation.

Women have sex organs that can produce babies. Yet why should the use of those organs for another purpose, such as bringing immense pleasure to herself or her partner, constitute convincing justification that her actions are perverse or unnatural? If someone “misuses” his teeth by opening a beer bottle, he is not accused of being immoral.

You may now say, “but genitals are only created for procreation.” But now I ask you to name who gets to decide that. Is it God? Surely you are not holding others accountable for your religious beliefs. And if it is you, how can you tell what its purpose is simply by looking at it? Or feeling it, too, I suppose.

Or maybe you are just confusing moral laws with natural laws. You see, here is the difference: inanimate objects and plants are predictable in that they follow natural laws by necessity. Much like Newtonian physics. Animals rely on their instincts. And humans (that’s us, to the layman) have a thing called rational will. People are special in this way. They don’t have to follow natural laws, they get to discover them and define them. So I guess if you still want to argue that people should follow the same natural laws as plants, objects, and other animals, then lead me the way as to how we should discover these laws that we humans should follow. If you just take a minute to look at the history of people, you will see that we are a diverse group, that homosexuality and same sex unions date as far back as 5th century Athens (that we know of), you will see that people are capable of abstract thought and the ability to make their own world.

Furthermore, as I have stated previously in my blog, homosexuality is found in other species in nature.

Or, on the other hand, maybe we shouldn't follow nature. Orangutans, our “genetic kin” live completely solitary lives without any kind of social organizations. Maybe we should follow their suit and be hermits. Oh, and look at bees and ants… they only have a couple members their entire generation reproducing. Actually, that may not be a bad idea.

I say leave the gays and lesbians alone, if your main argument is that they can’t procreate, because I have yet to hear of a world underpopulation problem.

To sum up my argument, the proposition that any use of an organ that is contrary to its principal purpose or function is unnatural assumes that organs have to have just one purpose or function. This may be denied on the ground that the purpose or function of an organ may vary depending on the desires and needs of its owner. You know... that human being with rational and abstract thought processes.

(Acknowledgements also to James Rachel’s book "The Right Thing to Do.")

102 comments:

Rachel said...

Game. Set. Match. Jane Know.

The Culturologist said...

Jane, not everyone who is an opponent of homosexual marriage relies on the normal/non-normal thing. Many of us recognize how complicated that language gets.

But the thing that is not that complicated is that all the data we have at this point demonstrate that children do best, statistically speaking, in family units that include the biological mother and the biological father. It is not a definitive picture, in part at least because much of the research that exists is so limited in scope. But there is absolutely no research to conclusively demonstrate that children raised in homosexual families do as well as children raised in biological mother-father non-divorced families. All the studies that purport to show few or no deficits for such kids fail to compare them to kids in intact biological mother father families--they compare them to e.g., divorced families, or adoptive families, or some other model that is inferior in outcomes to the intact biological family.

The institution of marriage inevitably serves as a key means of defining the normative family form and distinguishing it from those that are non-normative. Non-normative family forms exist, and no compelling laws or reasons exist to try to undo them (although there are plenty of reasons to try to minimize their numbers, starting with their negative effects on children), but it certainly makes good sociological sense to avoid fundamentally changing this key institution when we know that a) such a change will normalize family forms that are not now normalized (single-parent and divorced families already exist, but nearly always as a result of some failure to maintain the biological mother-father model--and in any event their existence does not undo the presumption that marriage has as its norm the intact biological family--homosexual marriages would undo that normative model) and b) no compelling evidence exists to allay fears that we would be willingly decreasing the institution's strength in its role in nurturant socialization of children (indeed, evidence exists that children from homosexual families exhibit deficits vis-a-vis those from normative families--e.g., female children from those families tend to be sexually active earlier, and this is highly correlated with negative outcomes).

The institution is very important for the nurturance of children, and those who do not like the idea of social experiments without really convincing evidence that the outcome will not be negative are perfectly justified in opposing homosexual marriage on those grounds.

It doesn't mean they are homophobic, or that they are repulsed by homosexual sex, or that they don't respect homosexuals as human beings and co-workers and friends. It just means that they refuse to go along with the fundamental altering of a basic social institution just because a very small minority of people would like to change it.

If I could be convinced that none of those married homosexuals would raise children, I wouldn't care much about this issue, to be honest. But since there is no such guarantee, I would insist that we have to wait to see precisely what the data show us about children from homosexual families.

It may be that they will prove there are no real differences. It does not look like that is the way things are leaning at present, but who knows? In any event, it is certainly too soon to seriously consider it, if we have real concern for the well-being and the rights of children.

Jane Know said...

show me the data. i just don't believe you.

Rachel said...

"But the thing that is not that complicated is that all the data we have at this point demonstrate that children do best, statistically speaking, in family units that include the biological mother and the biological father."

Rachel said...

CONTINUED...
Wrong. THIS. IS. WRONG. TWO PARENT households. TWO PARENTS. Statistically speaking children do best in two parent households. too bad this isn't in person so I could speak ve-ry sl-ow-ly for you.

Fannie said...

Culturologist goes on and on about the importance of studies, yet ends with this comment:

"those who do not like the idea of social experiments without really convincing evidence that the outcome will not be negative are perfectly justified in opposing homosexual marriage on those grounds. "

So, either way, the data is irrelevant. Evidence notwithstanding, if someone merely dislikes the idea of two people of the same gender raising children, that's justified too. How convenient.

Jane, no amount of evidence will convince him otherwise.

Barf.

Anonymous said...

Its funny how people are so concerned about the well-being of the children until the kid grows up and thinks for him or herself. And becomes him or herself.

I care about the kids too.... and I think the quality and warmth and love of the people raising the child has a lot more influence on a child's well-being than either of the parents' gender. Its just plain silly to think otherwise....

Jane Know said...

i know. just thought i'd humor them.

Jane Know said...

"I care about the kids too.... and I think the quality and warmth and love of the people raising the child has a lot more influence on a child's well-being than either of the parents' gender. Its just plain silly to think otherwise...."

exactly. of course a loving, two-parent household is ideal, regardless of the gender of the parents. it's a red herring that culturologist (and others) is using to avoid any real concerns about gay marriage. because there aren't any.

The Culturologist said...

Whoops. I should have written "natural/not-natural thing" rather than "normal/not-normal thing" in first sentence.

The Culturologist said...

Wow. You folks are really not all that interested in any complexity, are you? Everyone who disagrees with you is just stupid or evil. Reminds me of the Christo-fascists. Oh, but aren't you OPPOSED to them? No wonder you guys just scream at one another--neither one of you has any tolerance for thoughtful dissent from what you think is just obvious.

Judith Stacey's 2001 article summarizes much of the data on homosexual parenting. Have a look at it, should you be interested in learning anything. Note that she is an ADVOCATE of homosexual unions, and yet cannot avoid noting just the findings I noted.

A quick look at ANY of the studies that have looked at homosexual parenting comparatively will back up what I said. Check out the APA's page and READ the studies they cite. That will get you much further in the game of understanding than saying "THIS IS WRONG" and making juvenile remarks. And what are your credentials btw, Rachel, besides being a blogger who hasn't any entries on her blog? Do you work in this field? I do. Let's talk specific studies. Which ones are you referring to?

Fannie, maybe you can parse this for me:

Culturologist: "those who do not like the idea of social experiments without really convincing evidence that the outcome will not be negative are perfectly justified in opposing homosexual marriage on those grounds. "

Fannie: "So, either way, the data is irrelevant. "


Huh? I EXPLICITLY wrote that the evidence decides the case. If the evidence shows that homosexual parenting is equal in outcomes to biological parenting, my opposition goes away. How do you not see that?

The Culturologist said...

"I think the quality and warmth and love of the people raising the child has a lot more influence on a child's well-being than either of the parents' gender"

You may of course think whatever you like. Do you not see that some folks want more than just your opinion on the matter before taking such a radical step? Do you not see that perhaps empirical research might not back up your opinion?

The Culturologist said...

"Barf."

What are you, 10?

The Culturologist said...

"no amount of evidence will convince him otherwise."

Let's translate that: "I will construct a stereotype of the person with whom I disagree, which actually conflicts radically with what HE HAS EXPLICITLY SAID, and thereby absolve myself of the responsibility to actually KNOW what the evidence shows."

Fannie said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Fannie said...

Jane, excuse the long post.

Culturologist said:

"A quick look at ANY of the studies that have looked at homosexual parenting comparatively will back up what I said. Check out the APA's page and READ the studies they cite. That will get you much further in the game of understanding than saying "THIS IS WRONG" and making juvenile remarks."

Thanks for the "tips."

Yet you discount these studies because they "all" compare children of gays and lesbians to non-intact biological nother-father families. To that I say, there are many many more non-intact single parent families than there are gay and lesbian families. You say to this, yeah but these families are a result of the "failure" of some male-female relationship. Gay and lesbian people likewise have children as the result of the "failure" of male-female relationships. Should they not be allowed to raise their own biological children, then?

And, knowing that there are many more single-parent families than gay/lesbian families why don't you focus more of your energies on keeping male-female parent families intact? Instead of on keeping two people of the same genderfrom being parents? AND, since the studies show that gay and lesbian-parented families raise children with at least the same outcomes as single-parent families, why don't you also advocate that no single-parents should be allowed to raise kids?

I also find it interesting that according to APA-cited studies (read below), the vast majority of sexual abuse cases are perpetrated by men with the vast majority of victims being girls. Based on this study, one could easily declare that only single mothers or a two-female parent family should be able to raise girls- because a family without a man would protect many girls from sexual abuse. And that your "key institution" of male-female marriage, in fact, is harmful to many young girls.

See how you can use studies in support of many policy goals under the guise of "protecting the children"?


http://www.apa.org/pi/lgbc/publications/lgpchildren.html

From the APA:


"Sexual Identity

Three aspects of sexual identity are considered in the research: gender identity, which concerns a person's self-identification as male or female; gender-role behavior, which concerns the extent to which a person's activities, occupations, and the like are regarded by the culture as masculine, feminine, or both; and sexual orientation, which refers to a person's choice of sexual partners, who may be homosexual, heterosexual, or bisexual (Money & Ehrhardt, 1972; Stein, 1993). Research relevant to each of these three major areas of concern is summarized below.

Gender Identity. In studies of children ranging in age from 5 to 14, results of projective testing and related interview procedures have revealed that development of gender identity among children of lesbian mothers follows the expected pattern (Green, 1978; Green, Mandel, Hotvedt, Gray, & Smith, 1986; Kirkpatrick, Smith & Roy, 1981). More direct assessment techniques to assess gender identity have been used by Golombok, Spencer, & Rutter (1983) with the same result: All children in this study reported that they were happy with their gender and that they had no wish to be a member of the opposite sex. There was no evidence in any of the studies of gender identity of any difficulties among children of lesbian mothers. No data have been reported in this area for children of gay fathers.

Gender-Role Behavior. A number of studies have reported that gender-role behavior among children of lesbian mothers fell within typical limits for conventional sex roles (Brewaeys et al., 1997; Golombok et al., 1983; Gottman, 1990; Green, 1978; Green et al., 1986; Hoeffer, 1981; Kirkpatrick et al., 1981; Kweskin & Cook, 1982; Patterson, 1994a). For instance, Kirkpatrick and her colleagues (1981) found no differences between children of lesbian versus heterosexual mothers in toy preferences, activities, interests, or occupational choices.

Rees (1979) administered the Bem Sex Role Inventory (BSRI) to 24 adolescents, half of whom had divorced lesbian and half of whom had divorced heterosexual mothers. The BSRI yields scores on masculinity and femininity as independent factors and an androgyny score based on the ratio of masculinity to femininity. Children of lesbian and heterosexual mothers did not differ on masculinity or on androgyny, but children of lesbian mothers reported greater psychological femininity than did those of heterosexual mothers. This result would seem to run counter to expectations based on stereotypes of lesbians as lacking in femininity, both in their own demeanor and in their likely influences on children. Return to top

Gender-role behavior of children was also assessed by Green and his colleagues (1986). In interviews with the children, no differences between the 56 children of lesbian and 48 children of heterosexual mothers were found with respect to favorite television programs, favorite television characters, or favorite games or toys. There was some indication in interviews with children themselves that the offspring of lesbian mothers had less sex-typed preferences for activities at school and in their neighborhoods than did children of heterosexual mothers. Consistent with this result, lesbian mothers were also more likely than heterosexual mothers to report that their daughters often participated in rough-and-tumble play or occasionally played with "masculine" toys such as trucks or guns, but they reported no differences in these areas for sons. Lesbian mothers were no more and no less likely than heterosexual mothers to report that their children often played with "feminine" toys such as dolls. In both family types, however, children's sex-role behavior was seen as falling within the expected range.

More recently, Brewaeys and her colleagues (1997) assessed gender-role behavior among 30, 4- to 8-year-old children who had been conceived via donor insemination by lesbian couples, and compared it to that of 30 same-aged children who had been conceived via donor insemination by heterosexual couples, and to that of 30 same-aged children who had been naturally conceived by heterosexual couples. They used the Pre-School Activities Inventory (Golombok & Rust, 1993), a maternal report questionnaire designed to identify "masculine" and "feminine" behavior among boys and girls within unselected samples of schoolchildren. They found no significant differences between children of lesbian and children of heterosexual parents on preferences for gendered toys, games, and activities (Brewaeys et al., 1997).

In summary, the research suggests that children of lesbian mothers develop patterns of gender-role behavior that are much like those of other children. No data are available regarding gender-role behavior for children of gay fathers.

Sexual Orientation. A number of investigators have also studied a third component of sexual identity, sexual orientation (Bailey, Bobrow, Wolfe, & Mickach, 1995; Bozett, 1980, 1987, 1989; Gottman, 1990; Golombok & Tasker, 1996; Green, 1978; Huggins, 1989; Miller, 1979; Paul, 1986; Rees, 1979; Tasker & Golombok, 1997). In all studies, the great majority of offspring of both lesbian mothers and gay fathers described themselves as heterosexual. Taken together, the data do not suggest elevated rates of homosexuality among the offspring of lesbian or gay parents. For instance, Huggins (1989) interviewed 36 adolescents, half of whom had lesbian mothers and half of whom had heterosexual mothers. No children of lesbian mothers identified themselves as lesbian or gay, but one child of a heterosexual mother did; this difference was not statistically significant. In another study, Bailey and his colleagues (1995) studied adult sons of gay fathers and found more than 90% of the sons to be heterosexual.

Golombok and Tasker (1996, 1997) studied 25 young adults reared by divorced lesbian mothers and 21 young adults reared by divorced heterosexual mothers. They reported that offspring of lesbian mothers were no more likely than those of heterosexual mothers to describe themselves as feeling attracted to same-sex sexual partners. If they were attracted in this way, however, young adults with lesbian mothers were more likely to report that they would consider entering into a same-sex sexual relationship, and they were more likely to have actually participated in such a relationship. They were not, however, more likely to identify themselves as non-heterosexual (i.e., as lesbian, gay, or bisexual). These results were based on a small sample, and they must be interpreted with caution. At the same time, the study is the first to follow children of divorced lesbian mothers into adulthood, and it offers a detailed and careful examination of important issues. Return to top

Other Aspects of Personal Development

Studies of other aspects of personal development among children of lesbian and gay parents have assessed a broad array of characteristics. Among these have been separation-individuation (Steckel, 1985, 1987), psychiatric evaluations (Golombok et al., 1983; Kirkpatrick et al., 1981), behavior problems (Brewaeys et al., 1997; Chan, Raboy et al., 1998; Flaks, et al., 1995; Gartrell, Deck, Rodas, Peyser, & Banks, 2005; Golombok et al., 1983, 1997; Patterson, 1994a; Tasker & Golombok, 1995, 1997; Wainright et al., 2004), personality (Gottman, 1990; Tasker & Golombok, 1995, 1997), self-concept (Golombok, Tasker, & Murray, 1997; Gottman, 1990, Huggins, 1989; Patterson, 1994a; Puryear, 1983; Wainright et al., 2004), locus of control (Puryear, 1983; Rees, 1979), moral judgment (Rees, 1979), school adjustment (Wainright et al., 2004), and intelligence (Green et al., 1986). Research suggests that concerns about difficulties in these areas among children of lesbian mothers are unwarranted (Patterson, 1997, 2000; Parks, 1998; Perrin, 1998, 2002; Stacey & Biblarz, 2001; Tasker, 1999). As was the case for sexual identity, studies of these aspects of personal development have revealed no major differences between children of lesbian versus heterosexual mothers. One statistically significant difference in self-concept emerged in Patterson's (1994a) study: Children of lesbian mothers reported greater symptoms of stress but also a greater overall sense of well-being than did children in a comparison group (Patterson, 1994a); but this result has yet to be replicated. Overall, the belief that children of lesbian and gay parents suffer deficits in personal development has no empirical foundation.

Social Relationships

Studies assessing potential differences between children of lesbian and gay parents, on the one hand, and children of heterosexual parents, on the other, have sometimes included assessments of children's social relationships. The most common focus of attention has been on peer relations, but some information about children's relationships with adults has also been collected. Research findings that address the likelihood of sexual abuse are also summarized in this section.

Research on peer relations among children of lesbian mothers has been reported by Golombok and her colleagues (1983, 1997), by Green and his colleagues (1978, 1986), and by Patterson (1994a). Reports by both parents and children suggest typical patterns of development of peer relationships. For example, as would be expected, most school-aged children reported same-sex best friends and predominantly same-sex peer groups (Golombok et al., 1983; Green, 1978; Patterson, 1994a). The quality of children's peer relations was described, on average, in positive terms by researchers (Golombok et al., 1983) as well as by mothers and their children (Green et al., 1986; Golombok et al., 1997). Although some children have described encounters with anti-gay remarks from peers (Gartrell et al., 2005), young adult offspring of divorced lesbian mothers did not recall being the targets of any more childhood teasing or victimization than did the offspring of divorced heterosexual mothers (Tasker & Golombok, 1995, 1997). The number and quality of adolescents' and young adults' romantic relationships has also been found to be unrelated to maternal sexual orientation (Tasker & Golombok, 1997; Wainright et al., 2004). No data on the children of gay fathers have been reported in this area. Return to top

Studies of the relationships with adults among the children of lesbian and gay parents have also resulted in a generally positive picture (Brewaeys et al., 1997; Golombok et al., 1983; Harris & Turner, 1985/86; Kirkpatrick et al., 1981; Wainright et al., 2004). For example, adolescent relationships with their parents have been described as equally warm and caring, regardless of whether parents have same- or opposite-sex partners (Wainright et al., 2004). Golombok and her colleagues (1983) found that children of divorced lesbian mothers were more likely to have had recent contact with their fathers than were children of divorced heterosexual mothers. Another study, however, found no differences in this regard (Kirkpatrick et al., 1981). Harris and Turner (1985/86) studied the children of gay fathers, as well as those of lesbian mothers, and reported that parent-child relationships were described in positive terms. One significant difference was that heterosexual parents were more likely than lesbian and gay parents to say that their children's visits with the other parent presented problems for them (Harris & Turner, 1985/86). Another significant difference was that young adult offspring of divorced lesbian mothers described themselves as communicating more openly with their mothers and with their mothers' current partners than did adult children of divorced heterosexual parents (Tasker & Golombok, 1997).

Research has also focused on children's contacts with members of the extended family, especially grandparents. Parents are often facilitators and gatekeepers of contact between generations in families. Because grandparents are generally seen as supportive of their grandchildren, any strains in parents' relationships with grandparents might have adverse effects on the frequency of children's contacts with grandparents, and hence also have a negative impact on grandchildren's development. Patterson and her colleagues have evaluated these possibilities in two separate studies (Fulcher, Chan, Raboy, & Patterson, 2002; Patterson et al., 1998). Their findings revealed that most children of lesbian mothers were described as being in regular contact with grandparents (Patterson et al., 1998). In a recent study based on a systematic sampling frame in which lesbian and heterosexual parent families were well-matched on demographic characteristics, there were no differences in the frequency of contact with grandparents as a function of parental sexual orientation (Fulcher et al., 2002). Gartrell and her colleagues (2000) have also reported that grandparents were very likely to acknowledge the children of lesbian daughters as grandchildren. Thus, available evidence suggests that, contrary to popular concerns, intergenerational relationships in lesbian mother families are satisfactory.

Children's contacts with adult friends of their lesbian mothers have also been assessed (Fulcher et al., 2002; Golombok et al., 1983; Patterson et al., 1998). All of the children were described as having contact with adult friends of their mothers, and most lesbian mothers reported that their adult friends were a mixture of homosexual and heterosexual individuals. Children of lesbian mothers were no less likely than those of heterosexual mothers to be in contact with adult men who were friends of their mothers (Fulcher et al., 2002).

Concerns that children of lesbian or gay parents are more likely than children of heterosexual parents to be sexually abused have also been addressed. Results of work in this area reveal that the great majority of adults who perpetrate sexual abuse are male; sexual abuse of children by adult women is extremely rare (Finkelhor & Russell, 1984; Jones & McFarlane, 1980; Sarafino, 1979). Moreover, the overwhelming majority of child sexual abuse cases involve an adult male abusing a young female (Jenny, Roesler, & Poyer, 1994; Jones & McFarlane, 1980). Available evidence reveals that gay men are no more likely than heterosexual men to perpetrate child sexual abuse (Groth & Birnbaum, 1978; Jenny et al., 1994; Sarafino, 1979). There are few published reports relevant to the issue of sexual abuse of children living in custody of lesbian or gay parents. A recent study did, however, find that none of the lesbian mothers participating in a longitudinal study had abused their children (Gartrell et al., 2005). Fears that children in custody of lesbian or gay parents might be at heightened risk for sexual abuse are without basis in the research literature.

Summary

Results of research to date suggest that children of lesbian and gay parents have positive relationships with peers and that their relationships with adults of both sexes are also satisfactory. The picture of lesbian mothers' children that emerges is one of general engagement in social life with peers, with fathers, with grandparents, and with mothers' adult friends-both male and female, both heterosexual and homosexual. Fears about children of lesbians and gay men being sexually abused by adults, ostracized by peers, or isolated in single-sex lesbian or gay communities have received no support from the results of existing research."

Fannie said...

Culturologist also said:

" not everyone who is an opponent of homosexual marriage relies on the normal/non-normal thing"

Yeah, but many do... including some of your fellow bloggers at Opine. And I have yet to see any of them rebut Jane's post.

Bait and shift, bait and shift. Is that how it works?

Game. Set. Match.

Check. Mate.

The Culturologist said...

For someone who is supposedly an attorney, you seem to have some difficulty with elementary logical constructions. That I support as the NORMATIVE family form the one that the research indicates is best for children does NOT entail as a necessity that I advocate taking children from anybody. I don't know where you got that, other than from some fantasy in your own imagination. In some cases, in fact, family forms that are clearly inferior to biological mom and dad in outcomes are to be embraced as a kind of last resort for otherwise family-less kids (e.g., adoption). But there is a big difference, as a matter of social and cultural policy, between accepting that inferior forms will happen in the course of real life (while adhering in principle and law to the superior form) and simply giving up any principled institutional support for the form that the data suggests is superior in favor of 'any old family you want is ok.' That's not a particularly hard point to get--my students understand it very quickly.

Fannie: "why don't you also advocate that no single-parents should be allowed to raise kids?
"

In fact, I do think that people who deliberately set out to have children with no intention whatsoever of involving the male parent (the people who want to do this are almost always women) should be MASSIVELY discouraged from doing so, because the data are so clear on how this disadvantages the children involved.

Fannie: "the vast majority of sexual abuse cases are perpetrated by men with the vast majority of victims being girls. Based on this study, one could easily declare that only single mothers or a two-female parent family should be able to raise girls- because a family without a man would protect many girls from sexual abuse. And that your "key institution" of male-female marriage, in fact, is harmful to many young girls.
"

Is this the kind of logic you use in arguing cases? If so, I feel for your clients. That the vast majority of child abuse of girls is done by men is not the same thing as saying that those perps are those girls' BIOLOGICAL FATHERS. You see that, don't you? I.e., that there are individuals in the category 'men' with respect to any given female child who are not also in the category 'biological father'? So, you see how foolish it is to try to make the inference you make, no? Only someone who simply hates men would even consider a proposition so clearly unconnected to logic or facts as that one.

Finally, cutting and pasting a bunch of material from a website is not a demonstration of a consideration of the evidence. Again, an attorney ought to understand that. How many of those studies that the APA cites have you actually read? Any? WHich ones would you care to discuss, in detail in terms of their methodological and theoretical limitations? You name it, and we can talk about it. I have not read everything that is out there, but I've read a lot of it, and, unlike some folks, I'm prepared to read new material I haven't read...and even to let that material change my mind.

So, which ones?

Or is "barf" your final, juvenile and uninformed answer?

Jane Know said...

thanks for the post, fannie.

culturologist, did you really say that we "scream at each other?!" what are you talking about?! if anything we are only screaming at you and your op-ed buds. HARDLY at each other.

Fannie said...

Now I'm only "supposedly" an attorney?

Now I hate men?

The evidence speaks for itself with regard to sexual abuse (oh, and spouseal abuse and domestic violence too). Many of those men are fathers. One could infer that men shouldn't be allowed to raise children, since MOST abusers are men.

I'm not saying I agree with that statement, but ONE COULD MAKE THAT CLAIM based on the evidence.

Anyway, I'm used to being labeled a "man-hater." It's a typical way for men (and some women) to discredit feminists, lesbians, or those with positions contrary to your own.

Yes, I see what your MO is, culturologist.

Enrage the other side, belittle them, and mock them and then declare yourself the victor when they, understandably stop engaging with you.

Nice. For someone who is supposedly a professor.

See how speculating about someone's credentials over the internet doesn't really serve a purpose?

Jane Know said...

let me remind everyone (culturologist) that i don't put up with petty insults and personal assaults on my blog.

the point of arguing over the internet is not to construct entire research papers for YOU to read. this isn't your classroom. it's MY blog.

she was citing sources that back up her argument, and you again are questioning her research methods and career instead of staying on topic with her arguments. typical.
i really don't know where all this rage is coming from. she was only arguing her side...in much the same way you argue yours.

Fannie said...

oh yeah, everyone, and this:


LADIES AND GENTLEMEN. STEP RIGHT UUUUP! We have another mind-reader in our midst. CUUUUUULTRE-OLOGIST (ist, ist, ist)!!!!!

Able to discern the inner-workings of the feminist mind and just KNOW that she hates men!!!

Yes ladies and gents, the MAGNIFICENT EXTRAORDINARY

CULTURE-OLOGIST!!!

Rachel said...

Alright, alright. This is getting silly. Now we're left with repeating ourselves (both sides) and insulting each other. Boring. "fannie's side" has been accused of not wanting to engage, in debate. i think it's more a matter of not wanting to repeat ourselves. As many of us have stated, we don't want to take anything from you. we only want to have the same rights. you disagree with that for several reasons. whatever. the only one with which i can agree is that i don't think churches should be forced to marry same sex couples. that's because i'm an american. it's a whole separation of church and state thing. now why do we all need to continue to repeat ourselves. it's irritating. and finally i will break one of my own blog rules and speak on a personal level; culturologist, fannie IS an attorney. not supposedly an attorney. in fact, she's been MY attorney. and i will no longer engage in debate with someone who attempt to invalidate everything she says because she's a woman, who also happens to be a lesbian. What’s with the "supposedly?" I don’t remember her questioning you being a professor, prior to that comment.

Grace said...

"Wow. You folks are really not all that interested in any complexity, are you?"

Actually, and I'm only speaking for myself here, but no. I'm not terribly interested in complexity. People choose to make things complex when they don't understand, don't accept or don't like that which is simple.

Here's what is simple to me: Happy, well-adjusted parents will probably have happy well-adjusted kids.

Unhappy, poorly adjusted parents will probably have unhappy, poorly adjusted kids.

Every family will have certain hurdles unique to it that will require some tenacity of spirit to overcome.

Every kid will get teased about something.

There are SO many children in this country who have NO ONE looking out for them. They have almost NO chance for success. We have babies being born addicted to crack whose fathers are in prison.

I have seen the inside of the pregnancy ward of Cook County Jail. Now, I haven't read the statistics on the subject, but my guess is the outlook for those babies is substantially grimmer than that of children raised in a loving home by two parents of the same gender.

If it's really all about the children, Culturologist, as I think you claim, then really. Don't you have much much bigger fish to fry?

Seems pretty simple to me.

The Culturologist said...

I somehow didn't expect there would be any takers here for actual examination of the scholarship on this issue.

Well, carry on. I see the door over there.

Jane Know said...

yes, culturologist. your view is the only view that has any "scholarship" to it. good riddance. don't let the door slam shut on you and your warped mind on the way out.

Fannie said...

Culturologist said:

"I somehow didn't expect there would be any takers here for actual examination of the scholarship on this issue."

Bait and switch. Bait and switch.

Don't let the door hit ya... as they say.

Grace said...

Was it something I said? Sorry I'm not scholarly enough. I'll be heading back to that barn I was raised in now.

Actually, I feel like the Orkin Man- only with prettier hair.

Jane Know said...

haha... thanks, Grace. i'm going to start calling you over here from now on to get rid of pests like that.

Fannie said...

Grace,

What's this about you being an exterminator?

I knew you were lying about being a lawyer this whole time!

Marty said...

For the record, my opposition to SSM boils down to this:

SSM will mean that more children -- not less -- will grow up without both a mother and a father.

Your (whomever the shoe fits) inability or lack of desire to love a member of the opposite sex is a poor excuse for depriving a child of his mother or father, (depending on the direction of your bias).

When it comes to men/women, husbands/wives, mothers/fathers -- separate simply isn't "equal".

That's really it for me. If you and your GF want to shack up and play house, I could care less. Just don't inflict your bias on a kid, and don't go telling folks that it doesn't matter if little Johnny has no father. That would be cruel and unusual.

If gender didn't matter, you wouldn't have such a problem loving men. Gender does matter -- to you, and to little Johnny.

Jane Know said...

bait and switch.
bait and switch.
bait bait bait bait, bait, and switch.

it's like a song.

Jane Know said...

"That's really it for me. If you and your GF want to shack up and play house, I could care less..."

yeah, it's obvious you don't care at all.

Anonymous said...

"Are homosexual unions unnatural?" I have no idea. I do know that permanent mongamous unions between a man and a woman are unnatural. They don't happen in cultures that don't have a word for marriage, i.e. the union of man and woman for life. Marriage is a cultural development that occurs in all complex postagricultural civilizations. It's the foundation of any society that develops anything like a rule of law, or a comcept of human rights. That's why I'm hesitant to throw away the concept, i.e. to neuter the concept into a simple "union of two persons."

I believe that encouraging monogamy among gays will do good things for society, for gays, and for their children. But that's a different purpose from marriage -- a different institution entirely, however similar it might be superficially.

Anonymous said...

"fannie's side" has been accused of not wanting to engage, in debate.

That misses the point, Rachel. Fannie has been accused of sanctimonious hypocrisy, because she starts off the thread by pretending that she is trying to understand different points of view. She then proceeds to lie about what we are saying, to delete the posts that make our position clear, and then to cry that we cannot be reasoned with. If she does not want to engage in debate, she should stop sending mixed messages.

Fannie falsely implies on her site that I (one of the "four" banned IPs) had accused her of being "unfair." I said no such thing. Fannie has the right to kick who she wants off her site. But as an attorney, Fannie has made a covenant to conduct herself honestly, even when not engaged in the practice of law.

Honest mistakes happen. Attorneys make mistakes of facts, and I assumed that Fannie's misrepresentations (of herself as well as others) were simply careless errors. That's why I never called her a liar in our discussions on her site -- I simply showed her quotes that disproved her claims. But when she responded by deleting my posts to cover her traces, and banning me from the site, and falsely accusing me of breaking her "rules", then I can no longer give her the benefit of the doubt.

-c

Marty said...

bait and switch.
bait and switch.


If you say so -- I merely gave you the primary reason for my opposition against SSM.

I do have other questions/opinions about homosexuality in general, but they don't so much inform my position on marriage as they fuel my angst against pro-homosex propaganda.

For instance:

If homosexuals are "born that way, and cannot change", then there would be a two things:

1. A test that you could give to an infant to know whether or not they were gay. (Likewise, a test of the remains of a dead person, to know the same)

2. A complete lack of ex-gays.

Another is the simple fact that when a husband and wife visit a fertility clinic in an effort to have children, it is because one or both of them has a medical problem. But when two lesbians visit the same clinic, it's not for any medical problem -- but a social one.

I smell gender bias all over the propaganda of the pro-gay community. Who ever would have guessed that in the year 2007, good liberals would be insisting that separate really is equal after all?

Then there's this man i know, 50ish, a divorced father of two, who up and decides that he's a woman, has the surgery, and now wants his children to call him Mama.

Right -- he was "born that way". Poor fella, if anyone was mean enough to tell him how ridiculous he looks, he'd probably hang himself.

Anonymous said...

"Anyway, I'm used to being labeled a "man-hater." It's a typical way for men (and some women) to discredit feminists, lesbians, or those with positions contrary to your own."

Funny you should say that, Fannie, because a feminist lesbian who actually *agrees* with your position on ssm, read what you said on your site, and (although she doesn't know you) tried to defend you ... by that you had probably had "bad experiences" with men and could not be even headed in a rigorous argument with males. My response was, no, Fannie is a trained lawyer, she has to deal with men all the time, and my experience is that the Valerie Solanas types get a lot *more* angry and sadistic when they are argument with a woman who doesn't fall in line. You're definitely an authoritarian, but while certain things you said on your site reflect badly on you as a "progressive" amd as am attorney, I don't think there's enough evidence to say that you're a man-hater or a racist.

-c

Jane Know said...

"For instance:

If homosexuals are "born that way, and cannot change", then there would be a two things:

1. A test that you could give to an infant to know whether or not they were gay. (Likewise, a test of the remains of a dead person, to know the same)

2. A complete lack of ex-gays."

yes, marty, your logic is astounding(ly bad).

Marty said...

"yes, marty, your logic is astounding(ly bad). "

Feel free to explain it to me properly. Logically.

Honestly, all I'm asking for is a simple test. You know, like we have for all other biological conditions.

Jane Know said...

marty, you err in that you think homosexuality is a "condition."

as soon as we find out what makes people heterosexual, we will also know what makes people homosexual. but, really, does it matter?

gay people are around. they have always been around. and they will always be around.

i don't know what introducing that red herring is doing for your case.

Fannie said...

"But as an attorney, Fannie has made a covenant to conduct herself honestly, even when not engaged in the practice of law."

What are you gonna do, Christian, report me to the ARDC?

Some people on here seem to give you the benefit of the doubt. I, however, will not as you continue attempting to discredit me and mischaracterize what I do and say.

Read carefully. I don't want understanding with people whose meaning of understanding is for them to "walk me through my misconceptions about marriage" and ultimately agree with what they think. I have zero respect for most, if not all, of the Opine bloggers reasons against marriage equality, and frankly, I will never come to an understanding with the people who think what they think.


On top of that you are a newly minted law grad clearly following the trend of coming out of law school thinking that you know everything. Your constant legal references and rule-recitations seem more like a desperate attempt to make sure everyone knows that you went to law school. Yes, we all know. Congratulations. Good job.

Why this Opine obsession with me being an attorney? Your fellow bloggers have questioned whether I am one at all and they have mocked me for it.

I'm trying to tell myself this isn't a reflection of a deeper misogyny going and that their dislike of me has nothing to do with the fact that I am a WOMAN attorney, but I have to admit, it's in the back of my mind.

For, while they sit back and accuse me of hating men, they could very well be projecting their own hatred of the opposite gender onto me.


You also say that certain things reflect badly on me as a progressive and an attorney. Well, that's coming from you, someone with beliefs that are different than mine, and I think that your opinions and the fact that you associate with Opine Editorials reflects poorly on you as an attorney-to-be.

For, you do realize that if you pass the bar, you will have to take an oath to uphold the Constitution- equal rights clause and all.

I'm sure you will reason your way out of that one.

Details shmetails.

Jane Know said...

ps- for further info on this topic, may i direct you to the APA. unless, of course the American Psychological Association isn't good enough for you (as i'm sure it isn't, since it doesn't support your view).

http://www.apa.org/topics/orientation.html

this site has some basic info on sexual orientation and what causes people to have different sexual orientations. you just might learn something.

Adrienne said...

Marty,

Homosexuality is undoubtedly a combination of biological and environmental factors. They may identify the genes involved with predisposing someone towards homosexuality one day, just as we can find genes in people now that mean their risk of certain diseases or anomalies are higher than normal. That is not the same thing as a test to identify someone as gay.

And besides, let's play a disquieting mind game for a sec: you are murdered, stripped naked, and your body is left far from anyone who knows you or could identify you. Also say your hands have been cut off (so you didn't have a wedding ring on or it was obvious you didn't normally wear one). What tests could the police & coroner run on your body to determine that you, mystery man, were heterosexual? What testable physical traits would give away your heterosexuality?

Also, yes, there do seem to be some "ex-gays", but they are very small in number. It may be that there are several etiologies behind homosexuality and some causes lend themselves to "cure", in the sense of reversal. But even if that is true, it is also true that the evidence points towards the fact that most people who are gay stay that way, as the large and growing numbers of ex-ex-gays shows.

Jane Know said...

"Some people on here seem to give you the benefit of the doubt. I, however, will not as you continue attempting to discredit me and mischaracterize what I do and say."
i don't know who "c" is.... whether it's christian or that chairm person. but for the record, i don't give either of them the benefit of the doubt. i just don't want to argue with them anymore.

Marty said...

i don't know what introducing that red herring is doing for your case.

Sorry, but I'm not the one going around saying that people are "born that way, can't change".

As for what makes people heterosexual -- the same thing that makes a "pair of shoes" consist of a left and a right.

Why do lesbian couples go to a sperm donor? To engage in a heterosexual act.

Silly girl.

Adrienne said...

By the way, I found your blog via a link from Kevin Beck's "Chimpanzee Refuge" blog on scienceblogs.com. I'm not gay, but I support equal rights (including the right to form civil unions) for gays. I also support the state getting out of the marriage-endorsement business for everyone.

As I said, I am not gay myself, but I am marrying a man in May and we have already decided not to have children together. Not that I have any problem with children or other people having them--we have just decided for our own reasons that having kids is not for us. A lot of the "marriage defenders" would basically say that our marriage is a "sham" because we are choosing not to procreate, even though we are a man and a woman. I think that's a load of bullcrap (as I think 99.999% of the anti-gay-marriage crowd's arguments are). Kudos to you, Jane and Fannie, for having the patience to take on the thugs of OpEd.

Adrienne said...

Most people are heterosexual, Marty. But not all. There is a small percentage for whom the "left/right" thing doesn't apply. For them, homosexuality is the norm. Their "perfect fit" is another person of the same sex. We see this behavior in animals as well, so it's perfectly natural. Just as most people are right-handed, but some aren't.

Anonymous said...

In general I have humbly observed that most people come to conclusions based on their own world view and are comforted when they at last find some evidence to support what they already believe.

Nothing is more convincing than personal, life-changing, world-view changing experiences. So to you who are not in favor of equal marriage, I hope that you at least let yourself be open to meeting and knowing people who just might convince you otherwise. For, I can only think that if you were to interact personally on a daily basis with mmbers of a same-sex parenting household you could see for yourself that gender is irrelevant in the face of this complex, dangerous world. And at the very least, you might resign to knowing that you just might not know--or be able to determine--which household is better or worse given a bizillion idiosynchratic variables.

It seems that some (ehemm, culturologist) hold the view that people are justified to, by default, discriminate and opress a group that is unfamiliar, and therefore to be feared, until the opressed present sufficient evidence that they should no longer be opressed.

Again, I'm with Grace. Its pretty simple. I don't need to prove that I am born with anything. I don't need to prove that I am not harmful to children. Like everyone else in this society, I should be allowed to love who I love and raise a happy, well-adjusted family.

Jane Know said...

Adrienne,
thanks for your support. it's much appreciated. :-)

Marty said...

Adrienne, please reflect on this statement awhile. You might want to restate it:

There is a small percentage for whom the "left/right" thing doesn't apply. ... Just as most people are right-handed, but some aren't.

Surely you see the problem here...

--

anon@8:37,

You might want to reconsider calling it "equal marriage" unless you are willing to proclaim that when it comes to gender, "separate IS equal".

Fannie said...

Marty referred to Jane as a:

"Silly girl."


Thanks for confirming my suspicions.

And with that, I'm done with you.


Have a nice life.


Adrienne,

Thank you for your input. While I know that many heterosexuals in the real world are with us, it's refreshing to be backed in a forum such as this.

Marty said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Jane Know said...

see ya...

Anonymous said...

Fannie is correct that "-c" is me, Christian, not Chairm. I abbreviated since some folks mistook my name for a religious sermon.

"But as an attorney, Fannie has made a covenant to conduct herself honestly, even when not engaged in the practice of law."

What are you gonna do, Christian, report me to the ARDC?


Is that how you honestly interpret what I said, Fannie?

If I was threatening to report you, I'd say you were "subject to discipline." But unlike you, I'm not an authoritarian. I do not think that state-sponsored coercion is the answer to all of life's little problems. I'm simply correcting your misrepresentations of my position. I never accused you of being "unfair" for kicking anyone off your blog. You have a duty to behave honestly, regardless of whether that duty is enforced by state coercion. I'm appealing to your conscience. If your conscience is one of the parts of your soul that you lost in law school, that's not my problem. I'm simply dealing with you as I hope that someone would deal with me if I were to behave like you. I'd hope that someone would take the time to gently remind me of the duties that I signed up for.

"Read carefully."

Funny thing for you to say, right before misrepresenting me again:

"I don't want understanding with people whose meaning of understanding is for them to "walk me through my misconceptions about marriage" and ultimately agree with what they think."

I never said anything like that, Fannie. I've simply corrected some of your misrepresentations, and proved that if you cared to, you *could* reason with me.

-c

Anonymous said...

"Why this Opine obsession with me being an attorney? Your fellow bloggers have questioned whether I am one at all and they have mocked me for it."

I can't speak for others. But if you can imagine me as a fellow human being, picture that you just graduated from law school and took the bar, and ran into a site with that statement about losing part of your soul in law school and in the aftermath. You think you're the only one to ever experience those pressures? I fancy that I understand where you are coming from, and am hoping to survive those same pressures myself.

You and I disagree about a couple incredibly narrow issues (vaccines and what NAME we should call the bundle of rights that society should provide same-sex couples). The fact that you would demonize me over these differences is bizarre. Interesting.

As for "obsession," all I've done is blog chitchat. It's not like I've gone and written a blog article about you. :D

Why do you ask me about the motivations of other persons? I don't punish Rachel or Jane for your behavior, or demand that they answer for you.

-------
Jane, I'm not sure what you mean by benefit of the doubt. Since you told me that you didn't want to argue with me, I don't think I have argued with you. Fannie's asked me a few questions and I've replied. I'm not trying to hijack your blog, and please let me know if you feel that I've abused your hospitality.

-c

Rachel said...

Marty said:
"Good luck kiddo -- I hear lots of little girls grow out of their lesbianism once they graduate from college."
hahahahahahahaha!!! give it a try fuck-rag. put down your harry potter actions figures and take your best shot at jane.
since you're so in tune with the universe tell me aaaall about jane! so far she's an undergrad unsure of her sexuality...anything else. this'll be fun. gimme jane's profile and i'll give you yours.

Anonymous said...

Jane, I'm not arguing, just asking for purposes of clarification.

You said: "i still haven't grown out of my lesbianism. as a matter of fact it's only gotten stronger. sorry, i guess you just couldn't cut it as a man for girls like us."

I have no problem with the first two sentences of that quote, but the third one throws me for a loop. Until now I'd only heard homophobes say that lesbians just needed someone who could "cut it as a man." Have I misunderstood you, or do you use the word lesbian to mean something other than a woman who is exclusively attracted to other women?

-c, who learns something new every day

Grace said...

Heehee. Giggle giggle giggle. Kitty Fantastico... I heart you.

Jane Know said...

C-,
it was sarcasm. i am only attracted to women. some people who are lesbians, however, were attracted to men in the past, but later realized they were lesbians. i supposed it's different for everyone. but for me personally, i have only ever been attracted to women. some women used to be lesbians, but became attracted to men. we call those "hasbiens." some women are attracted to both men and women.
that's my post-3-beers-and-1-wine explanation of that.

Miss Kitty Fantastico said...

Does anyone this that c- is the least patronizing of the bunch? Let's not lynch him yet. go on c-...

Miss Kitty Fantastico said...

oops, *think. i meant "think"

Anonymous said...

Wow. You get my jokes, but I miss yours. I'm not used to this.

I had a woman's lit class in summer 1993 where the prof used to go on about how "all women are lesbians. I never understood what she meant. She redefined lesbian to mean "anyone who prefers the company (not necessarily sexual company) of women. She tried to use "The Bluest Eye" to support her theories, and that summer, Toni Morrisson happened to publically state that as the writer of the Bluest Eye, she saw no suggestion of lesbianism. The woman's lit class went on to argue whether Toni Morisson was too repressed to recognize what her own book was about, or whether she was just making false PR statements to keep the moral majority from shutting her down.

Anyway, I'm relieved that you're not one of those college type lesbians.

-c

Adrienne said...

Marty,

You said, "Surely you see the problem here..." Not really. Allow me to clarify.

Variation in the expression of some traits, whether it's handedness or sexual orientation, is natural within a larger population. Most people/mammals/birds are going to be heterosexual (necessary for biological perpetuation of the species) or right-handed (as is true in the case of humans). Therefore, it may be the "norm" to possess these traits when you look at the individual level. Yet it is no less natural to have a small percentage within a given population who aren't heterosexual, or right-handed for that matter. These individuals, though they may not express the "norm" for a given trait, still represent a perfectly natural and normal variation on a population level. Got it now?

And just as it is immoral to discriminate against left-handers for expressing a minority yet perfectly natural human trait, it is also immoral to discriminate against gay people for the same reason.

Adrienne said...

Marty,

You didn't answer the question I asked you earlier: what tests could we run on you (or your corpse) to determine your sexual orientation? What biological markers could be used to determine a person's heterosexuality?

Marty said...

Adrienne -- none. Sexual orientation is a social construct. We are all biologically heterosexual beings.

"Orientation" is a figment of your imagination.

Adrienne said...

Yes and no, Marty. In a sense you are right, our bodies are morphologically and hormonally one sex or another But what sexually and romantically attracts us --our sexual orientation--is no more a figment of the imagination than is my fiance's sexual attraction to women with wide hips and ample, rounded bums.

There may be no biological indicators to determine what kind of body shape he likes in women. But it is no less true, or no less deterministic in his mate selection (guess what kind of body type I have?)

Think about the first time you had a crush on a girl, for instance (assuming you are a hetero male). Did you intellectually and willfully "choose" to have that crush, or the initial attraction that led to it?

Adrienne said...

Sorry, I should have said that morphologically and hormonally *most* of us are one sex or another. There are a few intersexed people who may have characteristics of both sexes. But they are rare.

Adrienne said...

You know, I'm reading With God on Their Side, a history of the evangelical movement in the US. It's astounding how much the anti-integration/anti-civil-rights-movement arguments used mirror those used against gay marriage. Looking to "Scripture" to confirm God's plan for segregation and single-race marriage? Check. Hysterical declarations that forced integration will destroy the family and society as we know it? Check. Complaints about a minority agenda being forced on the unwilling citizenry via judicial fiat? Check.

I think the pro-gay-marriage people ought to be very heartened by this. Maybe in 50 yrs, the cultural descendants of the "Op Ed" crowd will be trying to piously differentiate themselves from those evil anti-gay-marriage bigots of years past (whilst attaching some new bete noire, naturally), just as they are now desperately trying to avoid comparisons between themselves and the evil anti-civil-rights segregationists of years past.

Fannie said...

"c"-

I will continue to address as you I really do believe you are the least patronizing. I don't know how much that really says about you, but I digres....


When I said:

"I don't want understanding with people whose meaning of understanding is for them to "walk me through my misconceptions about marriage" and ultimately agree with what they think."

you replied:

"I never said anything like that, Fannie. I've simply corrected some of your misrepresentations, and proved that if you cared to, you *could* reason with me."

Did I ever say that you were the one who said that ridiculous quote? No, one of your fellow bloggers said it (Jose, perhaps?). And therefore, I have no desire to "reason" with them.

As for wanting to "reason" with you, I haven't seen that you have been willing to reason with me. You went off on a combative tangent about your son being "shot in the head" with a vaccine in my HPV vaccine blog, mischaracterizing what I wrote and accusing me of wanting to "maim children in the the name of political correctness." I'm sorry about what happened to your son, but I, myself, am undecided about mandatory vaccines. I don't agree with people who are against them because they think vaccines will encourage sexual behavior, but I can see why people would be against them if they believe that vaccines do more harm than good. I don't think they do more harm than good, but some people do. Fine. Let's battle it out in the public health policy arena.

Asking if my law school taught "torts" was an unnecessary insult to my legal intelligence, which you know nothing of.

And then, on this thread, you have scolded me to me about my duties to be honest as an attorney, when you know nothing about me in real life and nothing about what I do for a living. You act as though you have a monopoly on truth and that you have to dutifully "correct my misrepresentations." Frankly, I find your holier-than-thou tone and statements about my "honesty" insulting.

And finally, when I say something about you or your fellow bloggers you (and they) play this grown-up game of "I'm rubber and you're glue" and say that I am projecting. That's an easy way to refute an argument. "You're just projecting."

For instance, You say that I am Authoritarian without even knowing in what sense I was using the word. (ps- it comes from John W. Dean's book, Conservative without Conscience). And, if you knew the sense I was using it in, you would know that, by virtue of its very definition, it could not apply to me.

You then implicitly accuse me of being "obsessed" with something because I have blogged about you. What I am "obsessed" with Christian, is social justice. Even you I think would agree that that's an admirable trait for an attorney. As Opine Editorials is a scary irrational blog dedicated not to social justice but to its denial to a particular group of people, I am going to "dedicate" some blog postings to criticizing it.

So, yeah, "c" I guess I am obsessed.

So, fine. If you want to continue playing childish games, that's fine. But I don't have the time or desire anymore.

Fannie said...

"I'm reading With God on Their Side, a history of the evangelical movement in the US."

Just got that book recently, I can't wait to read it. Although.... I think it will make angry more than anything...

Rachel said...

C-
re: your 93 college prof; sounds like some goofy shit to me. as i have been asked to turn a blind eye to crazies who represent your side (jose, renee, etc...) i'd ask you to do the same. extremist happen. it's the level headed folk in between (who remain committed to their desired outcome) who will get the job done. i still plan on whooping your ass (politically) on capital hill. i just plan on using law and reason, not abstract literary theories. (sidebar: in all fairness, I haven’t read the book, nor have I sat in on that professor’s lectures. Maybe she is on to something…maybe).

Jane Know said...

Adrienne said: "It's astounding how much the anti-integration/anti-civil-rights-movement arguments used mirror those used against gay marriage."

that's what i figured.

that books sounds good. I'll have to buy it. thanks for the info.

Marty said...

Adrienne, thanks for engaging in a reasonable converation.

Did you intellectually and willfully "choose" to have that crush, or the initial attraction that led to it?

No, I was attracted to the little girl because she was nice and I found her attractive. No particular "choice" involved. There were also plenty of girls that I did not find attractive, for a variety of reasons.

In fact, for a very long time, i simply could not imagine myself ever being able to be "attracted" to a dark skinned woman, a heavy-set woman, or a "masculine-type" (for lack of a better word) of woman, much less a man.

But you know what? I also never imagined that I could enjoy the taste of an olive. Or a tomato. Or spinach.

And yet I grew out of all of these ingrained and irrational biases.

Could I love a man? Sure I could -- I know some very beautiful men. Just as I know some very beautiful black, fat, and butch women.

Growing beyond my limited sense of "attraction" was very much a choice. I highly recommended it, in fact. Olives are wonderful things!

Anonymous said...

Rachel: i have been asked to turn a blind eye to crazies who represent your side (jose, renee, etc...)

I'm sorry if I came off as asking you to ignore them. You and I had just had a breakthrough, and I could not figure out why you were giving them all the attention. :)

"extremist happen."

Of course! I would not even have mentioned them if I realized anyone would interpret that as smearing you, or lesbians in general. (I liked the Prof, otherwise I'd not have taken her; I just thought her opinions about lesbianism were goofy. Paranthetically, I lost my teaching position for protesting her firing.) I thought the story would amuse you; I'm sorry if I misjudged.

To be honest, part of my motive for telling the story was to drop in the fact that I did take a woman's lit class. Not pretending that I'm an expert on feminism(s!) or lesbianism(s?), but I have made a concerted effort to learn, and I'm not hostile to feminists or to lesbians generally.

(sidebar: in all fairness, I haven’t read the book, nor have I sat in on that professor’s lectures. Maybe she is on to something…maybe).

Sure. I paid a heavy price for defending her right to speak her opinions. So even if she is on to something, I think that I'm still allowed to make fun of her ideas that I disagree with, so long as I don't knowingly or carelessly misrepresent them. Heaven knows I tried to understand her point, and asked her for clarification.

Grace said...

Rachel and Christian,
Sittin' in a tree...

Anonymous said...

I will continue to address as you I really do believe you are the least patronizing. I don't know how much that really says about you,

I hope it says that my efforts to be less patronizing are paying off. It's one of my many character flaws that I've been trying to curb for several years. If I've spoken in a patronizing way to you, I'd be very grateful if you'd show me how to say it in a less patronizing way. But I'm sure you have better things to do with your time and my self-improvement is not one of your duties. :)

As for wanting to "reason" with you, I haven't seen that you have been willing to reason with me. You went off on a combative tangent about your son being "shot in the head" with a vaccine in my HPV vaccine blog, mischaracterizing what I wrote and accusing me of wanting to "maim children in the the name of political correctness." I'm sorry about what happened to your son, but I, myself, am undecided about mandatory vaccines. I don't agree with people who are against them because they think vaccines will encourage sexual behavior, but I can see why people would be against them if they believe that vaccines do more harm than good.

Ah. Thank you for clarifying your position. I agree with you about the absurdity of the argument that vaccines will encourage sexual behavior. With regard to the Hep2 vaccine incident that I brought up, I never thought that kids would be encouraged to get laid; I simply don't think that *newborns* are generally sexually active enough to warrant vaccinating them for STDs. It's just an example of the sort of thing that happens when you trust our fascist healthcare system. (By "fascist," I mean when government makes "public good" decisions that are really about lining the pockets of powerful corporations.)

"I don't think they do more harm than good, but some people do. Fine. Let's battle it out in the public health policy arena."

When you said that I had misread you, I read through your post, and could not see how I could have inferred anything else. I quoted you the passages that I thought made an explicit call for mandatory mass vaccinations, and you responded by deleting my post and banning me. When I say somthing that others misunderstand, I generally correct my initial post, or explain how the person has misread what I've said, unless the person has a history of bad faith readings, like Arturo.

Asking if my law school taught "torts" was an unnecessary insult to my legal intelligence, which you know nothing of.

I'm sorry if I didn't make it clear enough that it was a rhetorical question. I've been told (right or wrong) that law school education is *very* standardized. I assume that you've learned pretty much the same things that I learned with regard to core classes like Torts. If I thought you were stupid, I would not be talking to you. I also note that I've dealt with you with a lot more respect than you've dealt with me, and while I have returned some of your pot shots, I have given you substantive answers.

And then, on this thread, you have scolded me to me about my duties to be honest as an attorney, when you know nothing about me in real life and nothing about what I do for a living.

My understanding is that if you've passed the bar, and haven't been disbarred, then you have signed up for the duty to deal honestly, regardless of what you do for a living.


I'm not sure what I've said that gives you the impression that I "have a monopoly on truth" or that I "have to" correct your misrepresentations. I'm often wrong, and I usually only realize it through interactions with others. I have no duty to correct your misrepresentations, but you've wronged me by misrepresenting me, and so I've chosen to respond by appealing to your concience. And as I suspected, there's still something there.

"Frankly, I find your holier-than-thou tone and statements about my "honesty" insulting.

I'm open to the possibility that what you just said is true. If you can think of a less insulting way I could have caught your attention to ask you to correct your misrepresentations of what I'd said, then I'd appreciate it. But if it's what I said rather than how I said it that offends you, then I can't help but notice that "holier than thou" is a textbook reaction to getting caught doing something that one is ashamed of.

And finally, when I say something about you [*] you [*] play this grown-up game of "I'm rubber and you're glue" and say that I am projecting."

[*] snipping references to others for whom I cannot speak.

You've misunderstood me if you think I've accused you of "projecting." I never said that the marriage defense group doesn't have its share of authoritarians. I've simply said that you should look at your own statements and behavior on the blog, and that your blog persona undermines your position to lecture about the evils of authoritarianism.


That's an easy way to refute an argument.

That may be true, but it's not what I was doing.

"You then implicitly accuse me of being "obsessed" with something because I have blogged about you."

No, Fannie; you're misconstruing what I said by taking it out of context. Remember, you accused me of being obsessed with you. In reply, I'm simply that since your blogging about me obviously doesn't mean you are "obsessed" with me, you cannot reasonably say that I'm obsessed with you just because I've posted a few comments on blogs responding to your accusations.

While I have not IIRC accused you of projecting, I don't think that the fact that it's easy to do means that such an accusation is inherently invalid. When someone attacks an unreasonably large class of people, projection is very often at play. I won't bore you reiterating how racism and sexism usually involve projection of one's own desires onto the "other" -- I assume you're at least as versed in that stuff as I am. What might surprise you (since I've never seen the argument made before) is that I think that I can show that homophobia operates along the same lines.

My wife needs a nap and Thing One and Thing Three need my attention. I'll reply to what you said about "authoritarianism" later, unless Jane objects.

-c

Jane Know said...

marty said: "sexual orientation is a social construct. We are all biologically heterosexual beings."

it really doesn't look like you've read my original posting at all. otherwise you'd be able to back up your claims of humans being "biologically hetersexual beings" with more than just your opinion.

and ps, just becuase i stopped responding to you earlier, doesn't mean you "won." you can go brag to your other homobigots on your blog, but i will NOT tolerate your lies and hatred on mine.

Jane Know said...

ps-i'm leaving your posts up because it appears that you and Adrienne are debating.

and mainly because i believe that her response, as a straight woman (whose opinion you obviously value more), will help you see how ridiculous you are.

Rachel said...

c-
i think i'll let the conversation flow for a while without me. i want to read some other perspectives for a while. but to be clear, i did think it was funny. being a feminist is a noble thing. ALL human beings should be feminists. i just fear the feminazi. they make the rest of us look bad. p.s. Grace for president (or rather "lezzie for prezzie?")

Jane Know said...

C-
your posts are welcome here, as you have been courteous me and my friends. thanks for that.

Marty-
i am done stooping to your level.

it's obvious to anyone who reads our exchanges that your argumentation style consists of baiting your opposition by denouncing the very core of who they are, and then running back to your home blog and declaring yourself the victor because what you said upset them. because they justifiably became mad that someone they don't even know was telling them how to live, who they should sleep with, and who they should spend the rest of their lives with. i doubt that has ever happened to you. two guesses... are you white? are you straight? thought so.

your language is the very essence of abusive, and your attacks on me come across as very personal (beginning with questioning Matthew Shepard's murder, and ending with calling me "silly girl" and mocking my sexuality). so forgive me if i've gotten upset.

i live in a very urban, tolerant area. and i easily forget that there are still people out there who don't understand homosexuality, or don't agree with it. (probably because i don't surround myself with people like that)

in other words, you don't fight fair. and if thats the way you want to win, then fine. you win. now scoot on home and brag to all your friend.

Anonymous said...

"As Opine Editorials is a [inflammatory and fear inducing bromides stated too vaguely to constitute specific misrepresentation], I am going to "dedicate" some blog postings to criticizing it."

Fannie, I welcome your criticism of Opine and of me as a person, but ask you to correct your specific misrepresentations on your site of my statements and positions.

I don't expect you to change your position or to describe me in glowing terms. Mock away, but do so honestly. I only ask you to correct your misleading statements about what I said and what I believe in.

For example, you cite me as believing that social catastrophe will come if we give the RIGHTS of marriage to same sex couples. That's a false representation of my concerns of what will happen if we dispense with the idea that a child needs a father as well as a mother -- an idea that I think is tied up with the gendered definition of the word "marriage." I support giving the RIGHTS of marriage to same-sex couples. What I oppose is redefining the word "marriage" as the union of two persons. Refusing to refer to same-sex unions as "marriage" is not the same thing as wanting to deny the rights of marriage to gays.

Another example of dishonest representation of our conversation: I apologized to you for accidentally misattributing Amy's statement to you. You deleted the apology, and *then* listed the misattribution in your list of complaints of how "unreasonable" I am. That's a very sophisticated, calculated, adult sort of dishonesty. Nothing that you'd get disbarred for. But not behavior that does credit to the sort of person that I take you to be: someone who is sufficiently self-aware to regret certain aspects of what she has become.

But then, maybe I'm projecting.


Looking at the big picture, I notice that once again your post follows this pattern:

1. Start by describing what sounds like sincere effort to dialog. "I will continue to address as you I really do believe you are the least patronizing."

2. Make a dramatic response to something that I didn't say. "You then implicitly accuse me of being "obsessed" ... [drum roll*] "So, yeah, "c" I guess I am obsessed."

3. End on a desponded note where you proclaim that you no longer want to dialog, because of the statements that you put into my mouth in #2. "So, fine. If you want to continue playing childish games, that's fine. But I don't have the time or desire anymore."

On the bright side, this time, between #1 and #2, you said several things that I cannot dismiss as sincere attempts to dialog.

I'm not sure what to make of this, Fannie. Are you conflicted, or are you playing coy?

-c

PS:
*No, Rachel, making fun of Fannie for being melodramatic ["drum roll"] isn't misogyny, any more than it was misanthropy when Fannie made fun of me for being melodramatic with the "maiming children" line on her vaccine thread. Just because we are completely sincere when we said something doesn't mean that we can't later look and laugh at ourselves for being over the top. Yes, I'm assuming that Fannie has the capacity to laugh at herself, and yes, maybe I'm projecting.

Grace said...

"someone who is sufficiently self-aware to regret certain aspects of what she has become."

I'm going to be completely honest with you Christian. I don't know what it is about your choice of words here that FILLS me with rage, but something does.

I think you're skating on thin ice. That was a passive aggressive, manipulative, asshole thing to say, and really only goes to show you have NO idea what kind of person Fannie is. I'm actually disappointed in you, as I felt you were, at times, someone worth debating with.

And now, because I lack maturity, I want to ridicule you.

Anonymous said...

You know, I'm reading With God on Their Side, a history of the evangelical movement in the US. It's astounding how much the anti-integration/anti-civil-rights-movement arguments used mirror those used against gay marriage.

Surely you realize that politics being what they are, that your side would be making that claim regardless of whether it were true. Whenever one side wants something and the other doesn't want it, comparisons to the civil rights movement, slavery, and the holocaust are inevitable. The fact that someone made a comparison says nothing. Reasonable people must make up their own minds as to whether each comparison holds water. Since I generally dispise appeals to authority, I wish that people on both sides of this issue would explain the reasoning behind the comparisons, rather than saying that this or that celebrity said it, and therefore that it must be valid.

Looking to "Scripture" to confirm God's plan for segregation and single-race marriage?

How's that any worse, logically speaking, than saying that Corretta Scott King said it? I like Corretta Scott King, and I like God, but I'm not going to shut my mind off just because you tell me that they said such and such. Give me reasoning or give me brain-death. ;)

Hysterical declarations that forced integration will destroy the family and society as we know it?

What forced "integration" are you speaking of Adrienne? SSM does not force anyone to enter marriages. Your analogy fails.

The civil rights movement never involved government-enforced changes to the *language.* Orwellian newspeak was never on the civil rights agenda. There is no civil right to a word.

To be certain, words are powerful and affect our lives, but the power to change cultures by redefining the language is not a power that Americans have historically trusted to the state.

Dismissing arguments that you disagree with as "histerical" is a traditional tactic of misogynists, Adrienne. I don't think that it's any more moral or reasonable to use that sort of tactic against Evangelists, than it is to use against Women, or any other group. Don't get me wrong -- I think it's perfectly legitimate to refer to the argument as hysterical, once you've honestly engaged the argument and shown that it has no merits. Does your book address the merits of the arguments against ssm? Or does it use superficial analogies to civil rights history to prevent readers from considering the opponents' arguments?

Even if the analogies were good (and from what you've said so far, I have my doubts), fighting against bigots doesn't mean that *you* are presenting a civil rights issue. When Loving v. Virginia overturned the miscegenation law as invidious, the Supreme Court looked honestly and rigorously at the rationale for the law, before determining that the sole purpose for separating the "races" was to maintain white supremacy. Goodridge on the other hand relies on systematic misrepresentation. Civil rights advocates call for open discussion of the issues. SSM advocates, generally, seek to prevent open discussion, and like the fundamentalist, use a tweaked version of history to prevent people from looking at the present day facts.

When you use the past in a way that overshadows and obscures the present, you're not engaging in analogy. That's fundamentalist mythmaking.

-c

Adrienne said...

Marty,

You're welcome.

So you think you could just become sexually attracted to men and develop crushes on men if you chose to? Like a light switch, you could just "turn on" your attraction to men?---------------

Here's a question for you-- what if you "chose" to start having romances with men, and then suffered negative consequences from that? Like, you lost your job because your boss found out that you were having romances with other men. You had people arguing in public that you deserved censure for the fact that you had romantic relationships with men, because men who loved men were sinners and unnatural. People argued that your romances with men were endangering society, etc.

Would you still choose to date men exclusively? Or would you start to choose to date women again, seeing as how others were making your life hell for being attracted to men?

Jane Know said...

"Surely you realize that politics being what they are, that your side would be making that claim regardless of whether it were true. Whenever one side wants something and the other doesn't want it, comparisons to the civil rights movement, slavery, and the holocaust are inevitable. The fact that someone made a comparison says nothing."

it says nothing *to you* because you are on the other side of the argument. what good would it do for you to agree with this?

"Reasonable people must make up their own minds as to whether each comparison holds water. Since I generally dispise appeals to authority, I wish that people on both sides of this issue would explain the reasoning behind the comparisons, rather than saying that this or that celebrity said it, and therefore that it must be valid."

no one is claiming that what these "celebrities" say is valid ONLY because of their celebrity status. do you trust no sources other than your own reasoning? that seems a pretty narrow way of thinking. i think the point of her reference of the book she is reading is to argue by analogy. there are many striking similarities between the civil rights movement and the gay rights movement, actually. it doesn't take any appeal to authority to realize that. just look at history.

Fannie said...

Christian,

"For example, you cite me as believing that social catastrophe will come if we give the RIGHTS of marriage to same sex couples. That's a false representation of my concerns of what will happen if we dispense with the idea that a child needs a father as well as a mother -- an idea that I think is tied up with the gendered definition of the word "marriage." I support giving the RIGHTS of marriage to same-sex couples. What I oppose is redefining the word "marriage" as the union of two persons. Refusing to refer to same-sex unions as "marriage" is not the same thing as wanting to deny the rights of marriage to gays."

You would do better to disassociate yourself from Opine, if those are your beliefs. If we're just arguing about a "word," I don't think we are in disagreement. If your concern is over the word "marriage," I personally, think you are making too big a deal over a mere word. You would vote against a politician that is for giving gay people the rights and benefits of marriage if the word "marriage" was used, and thus deny a group of people all of these rights and benefits just because they call it "marriage." If that's your position I just can't agree that that's reasonable.


"I apologized to you for accidentally misattributing Amy's statement to you. You deleted the apology, and *then* listed the misattribution in your list of complaints of how "unreasonable" I am. That's a very sophisticated, calculated, adult sort of dishonesty."

You attribute way too much malice to me. Do you realize that my postings generated about 250 comments? My first priority was deleting comments that were blatantly offensive and wrong. There is enough homophobia and idiotic opinions about gay people out there, that I at least don't want them on my blog.

As for your specific comments, I was more offended by your melodrama and your misreading of my original post and your attribution of what jane said to me. I specifically did NOT state my position on whether HPV vaccine should be mandatory on purpose, because I didn't want THAT to be the issue. That wasn't the point of my post.

As for why I banned you and my explanatory post, I wanted you to know why I deleted your comments. Now you know, and I'll delete the comment that you were talking about. It really was an oversight on my part. When people from a site that you associate with are acting malicious, it's hard not to think that YOU are also malicious. It's hard not to group you all into a bigoted group of assholes. Even if, in reality, you don't have much in common with them. Anyway, I hope that makes sense.

All that being said, I find your continuous reminders that I have duty of "honesty" as an attorney to be insulting. You act as though I'm this dishonest person who intentionally lies and misrepresents what you say. And that's just not true.

Fannie said...

"I think you're skating on thin ice. That was a passive aggressive, manipulative, asshole thing to say, and really only goes to show you have NO idea what kind of person Fannie is. I'm actually disappointed in you, as I felt you were, at times, someone worth debating with."


Thanks Grace.

Rachel said...

Oy! My eyes hurt. Christian, I will direct this toward you, since you and I are “sitting in a tree”, but it is for EVERYONE out there who gets a chapped ass when we (pro ssm-ers) take off the gloves and start swinging (sometimes with purposely bitchy intent). As of now, the law, in regard to marriage ALREADY favors heterosexuals. You were grandfathered into it in these United States. You we not first asked to state your purpose and defend you character before the government solidified what is now our current marriage legislation. MOST opposition to ssm is based on the type of person one believes a gay or lesbian person to be. Perhaps your opposition is rooted in other pots, but MANY are opposed because they believe that gay couples are unsavory folk who are harmful to society. That being said, when comments are made that are wrong (not morally wrong; factually) i.e. our levels of education, accusing us of being on welfare, accusing us of abandoning our children, accusing us of NOT working in the professions in which we practice, stating that we consider children a commodity, and SO MUCH more, it is representative of a much greater issue. Our opposition is making UNTRUE assumptions about us based on pre-conceived notions and presenting it as fact. This is the war we wage. If I were to ask for a change in legislation to better control the American Male because men are abusive, alcoholic, sexual predators, who want nothing more than to control women and children, you’d be pissed. These are stereo-types that are untrue of most, if not all men with whom I associate. Frankly, it matters not what we think or say about you because the law already has taken care of you (in regard to marriage). BUT it does matter what people say about us. We must refute EVERY single untruth about us that damages our credibility or normalcy, even if sometimes in the form of a verbal bitch-slap. Do not forget that the core of this is humanity. Human beings on both sides are fighting for their lives. It’s not always poetic and eloquent. Remember with whom you grapple. I will not stand by while someone speaks untruths about me or my friends and family. Before change can be made we must first paint an accurate picture of Gay America, and that will begin with diligently refuting, misconceptions and lies. People like Jose, Renee, Marty, the Cuturologist, and many more wreak of untruths, and you may just be a victim of guilt by association, but you and I both know, such is life. I’d post this on all of the pages, but as my exceptionally wise mother says, “I have neither the time nor the inclination.” So pass it on if you want. Either way, “that’s my story and I’m stickin’ to it.”

Jane Know said...

"Our opposition is making UNTRUE assumptions about us based on pre-conceived notions and presenting it as fact. This is the war we wage. If I were to ask for a change in legislation to better control the American Male because men are abusive, alcoholic, sexual predators, who want nothing more than to control women and children, you’d be pissed."

thanks for your eloquence, rachel. you said what i've been trying to say this whole time.

Jane Know said...

"Civil rights advocates call for open discussion of the issues. SSM advocates, generally, seek to prevent open discussion..."

if civil rights activists presently seem more "open for discussion" it's probably because white people can no longer get away with calling black people inferior, unnatural, perverted, bad for children, and anti-family. these false assumptions are no longer on the table as fact. thus, the opposing sides are on more equal footing.

the minute anyone who opposes gay marriage brings any of those false assumptions up is the minute we begin to discredit their arguments. it's the minute many of us start to take it personally and begin to get nasty.

i don't expect you to understand, christian. it's clear that you aren't able to empathize with that. but that's the way we see it.

Marty said...

Adrienne,

No, not like a light switch -- more like developing a taste for olives...

But I can't discuss it with you here, because Jane is deleting almost all of my comments.

Sorry about that.
Marty

Jane Know said...

re: my above comment.

case in point, marty's comment here demonstrates the epitome of what we pro gay-marriage advocates despise.

thanks for chiming in, marty. your timing was impeccable.

although slow, and dangerous behind the wheel, the homobigot can still serve a purpose.

Fannie said...

Marty,

"But I can't discuss it with you here, because Jane is deleting almost all of my comments."

The beauty of free speech in the US is that you can write pretty much whatever you want on your own blog. But there's enough anti-gay speech out there that we don't have to tolerate it on our own blogs.

Anonymous said...

"if civil rights activists presently seem more "open for discussion"

They don't. That's just the problem. Civil rights advocates from the 1800s through the 1960s were sometimes strident, angry, or even homicidal (John Brown), but they weren't focused on shutting down the other side's discussion. They focused on getting their own message out. It was the abolitionist papers that got burnt. The civil rights voters that got turned away from the polls and murdered.

it's probably because white people can no longer get away with calling black people inferior, unnatural, perverted, bad for children, and anti-family.

First, I've never used any of those arguments in any anti-ssm argument, and yet in every ssm debate, someone tries to marginalize me through accusations of bigotry. Bigot is a funny word. Used to mean, someone who refuses to consider the ideas of other people. Now it means a person whose ideas must not be considered. Ironic, isn't it?

Second, I have argued with people who do make those arguments against blacks. I find it more productive to show them the defects in their logic, than to impugn their character. Racism is just one of many preconceptions that most people can grow out of, if they are given facts and logic and room to exercise them in. I'm glad to live in a country where even a neo-nazi can voice his idiotic views. That's the difference between America and France, where I have also lived. Here in America, you let the neo-nazis rant, but then you don't vote them into office. France OTOH throws people in jail for expressing nazi views, but then turns around and elects people like Le Pen to office. Americans understand that book burning is not the way to fight naziism. I just wish you all would take the next step and use logic rather than groupthink and authority appeals to fight against bigotry.

The greatest weapon against bigotry is not shame and fear, but truth.

these false assumptions are no longer on the table as fact.

Ah, but when you also take them off the table as *theory*, you lose the power to argue against them. If you think that making it not OK to say something, makes the underlying belief just go away, then look at the sort of goons that periodically get elected in countries like France, Germany, Austria, and Israel.

thus, the opposing sides are on more equal footing.

Equal footing would be good if this is a game, but I'd rather address false assumptions -- my own false assumptions as well as those of my opponents.

Anonymous said...

Ack, I did it again. In this case, my "you all" grouping meant Americans, whose free speech ethic I admire.

Jane Know said...

but they weren't focused on shutting down the other side's discussion."

i don't think we are focused on shutting down the other side's discussion. as i have stated before, it's difficult to "reason" with someone who doesn't reason.

while you personally haven't used those arguments against gay people that i mention, most others have. don't you think it's funny that your the only one left standing?

i will state again that we can get nowhere if people are starting out their arguments already making implicit that which they seek to prove. i'm not going to waste time arguing about whether or not i can "turn straight" over and over and over with someone when the issue is legalizing gay marriage.

marty, culturologist, jose, on-lawnm et. al. didn't even address any of my points in my "are homosexual unions unnatural" blog. they just started talking about the evils of gay parenting, which wasn't the topic at hand.

i got MY MESSAGE out there all right. and they didn't or couldn't refute any of my points. they just babble about the evils of gay parenting and how that is going to lead to polygamy and legalizing bestiality.

further, when fannie went so far as to cite several studies (i know you hate appeals to authority) showing no such claims were true on their part, they immediately discredited them. they want research as proof from us. yet every time we offer it to them they discredit the source.

there are people whose minds you can't change.

and it simply doesn't have to. i'm not focused on them.

we have, actually, tried and tried to reason with them.

but, i repeat, all of the rest of those anti SSMers belittle us, call us "little girls," tell us we just need to experience a man, tell us to seek therapy, and so on.

it's a little ridiculous to argue with them after awhile.

so i am going to get MY WORD out there.

and the less time i waste responding to just a few ignorant assholes, the more time i have getting MY WORD out to people who will listen.

Anonymous said...

don't you think it's funny that your the only one left standing?

Not a bit funny, since I emailed them and asked them to stop posting on your blog for a few days. Marty accidentally got left out of the batch email.

I'm unfamiliar with culturologist's sig; I'm not sure if he's part of Opine. But I'm sure that the others would love to reply to your questions. I've just suggested that they do so in groups of one or two, making dialog more likely than brawl.

I'm not the only person on Opine who agrees with SSUs, but I'll let the others speak for themselves.

As for shutting down the discussion, that wasn't aimed at you, Jane. Again I need to more carefully distinguish my general critiques of a movement, from some sort of critique of individuals in that movement.

Put it this way -- I see you in the same way that you've described me -- as someone who I can reason with, who is part of a movement that seems generally unreasonable and threatening to me. Other ssm groups actually see me as *more* threatening once they realize that this is only about the word to me. You, Rachel and today, it seems even Fannie, once she understood my position, have not tried to obscure my argument or to silence me.

Jane Know said...

christian- fair enough. i guess i didn't know you associate with the op-ed people as frequently as you do... i haven't been to their blog all that much.

"Other ssm groups actually see me as *more* threatening once they realize that this is only about the word to me"

i guess we all pick and choose our battles differently. i personally don't feel like convincing people that gays can not be made straight, or that we aren't harmful to children, etc. to me it seems obvious that this isn't true.

but i can see how some might think that changing people's notions of gay people could make our fight easier.

i would much rather use logic and reason, which is what i haven't gotten around to as much as i would like. the type of argument style that you have used in many of your posts.

i have been too focused on defending who i am and taking the gay and lesbian-bashing too personally.

that's something that i will need to change to be more effective in the future.

Marty said...

I am now "officially" a member of Opine, so if you'd like to continue our discussion over there, Adrienne, you're welcome to.

Adrienne said...

Hi Marty.

Sorry, didn't see your invitation to continue the debate until just now. Had not been visiting this blog for a few days.

I think I shall decline your invite, though. I'm not wild about the idea of debating --or doing anything, really-- on or associated with Opine Editorials.

Jane Know said...

Upon further reflection, and after reading some comments written by Culturologist on Opine today, I've come to the conclusion that that which he most accuses his opposition of is what he, himself, is most guilty.

Apparently, he (thinks he)is a Very Important Professor. And apparently (to him) this makes him able to decipher people's personalities via one or two sarcastic internet blog comments, disregarding everything else they have written. So we are reduced to "hysterical," "screaming," girls, and he is the Purely Objective Important Male Figurehead Authority.

He likens Fannie (in a conversation over on Opine Idiotorials) to the women who attend Vagina Monologues, and the woman that he made cry at said Vagina Monologues at his University. Yes. He made someone cry at a celebration of feminism. Because apparently, women celebrating their vaginas evokes a bit too much anger in the "Professor." Clearly something is amiss here.

I've found that his remarks, above (or below) the rest, have been the meanest, the most insulting, the most patronizing, and the most dismissive. It is clear to me that he has a deep hatred for women, and seeks to keep them "in their place." He sees them as emotional, hysterical, screaming, and using "crying" as weaponry in place of actual rationale. (instead of admitting that he was probably an asshole that hurt someone's feelings).

Further, in commenting on this particular article, he completely ignores the main point and writes about what is important TO HIM about marriage (the children).

And when I don't humor him by writing an unrelated-to-this-article research paper as he suggested, he dismisses me as "unable to reason properly" and "Let's translate that: "I will construct a stereotype of the person with whom I disagree, which actually conflicts radically with what HE HAS EXPLICITLY SAID, and thereby absolve myself of the responsibility to actually KNOW what the evidence shows."

Projection much?

Asshole.

Have a nice life at University "Professor."

I can't wait until more people figure out (if they haven't already) what a woman-hating pussy you are.

Jane Know said...

from: http://opine-editorials.blogspot.com/2007/09/of-race-racism-and-republicans.html#comment-4640330375133158825

"The Culturologist said...
Precisely.

This reminded me of another piece of my Vagina Monologues experience here where I work. There was a forum on the play after it was performed here--I was invited to be on the panel and to discuss my reading of it. I spent the vast bulk of the time I had discussing the lesbian 'good rape' scene--simply recounting what is in the play, going over the facts of the illegality of the act described in numerous states, the social scientific literature that demonstrates the harm done to children who are sexually active early, etc.

WHen I finished, a young woman in the audience (a Womens' Studies major, I learned later) raised her hand to ask a question/respond. Within about 30 seconds of her response, and without having said the slightest coherent thing, she was in tears, crying that people like me were ruining everything, blah blah blah.

As others in the audience went over to comfort her, evil looks by the dozens shot in my direction. How DARE I make critical remarks about something that had been defined by the PC orthodoxy as unassailable? How dare I assume that a university was about such dispute and discussion and disagreement, and that our job is to prepare students for that activity, not simply to convince them that they should break into tears every time they come into contact with people who do not accept the dogmas they accept?

It was a sad moment. Because this young woman was clearly so intellectually incapable of dealing with debate, and because so many of my colleagues had done so much to reinforce her wholly emotional reaction as intellectually legitimate.

I invite you to look at my blog where I have stats on grading distribution in the various departments in my school. Note that, while the problem of grade inflation is high everywhere (and should concern us greatly), it is substantially higher in some places than others. In Womens' Studies
81% of all students in all courses receive an A. EVERYONE knows what that is about, whether they will admit it or not--ideological correctness is the grade requirement there, not any actual argumentative or rational prowess. Line up on the 'right' side, learn to hate the 'wrong' side, and fall into hysterical tears as a 'response' to it whenever you come into contact with it, and you get your A."


I think it's obvious this guy has some kind of vendetta against women.