"The Bible and Homosexuality" Matthew Vines´ speech
Homosexuality is a term used to designate a sexual orientation, an attraction towards people of the same sex. People who feel attracted emotionally, erotically and sexually to people of their own sex are called homosexuals. Men who love men refer to themselves as gay. Women who love women are called lesbians. The word gay is also used for both men and women. People who are attracted by both their own and the opposite sex are called bisexual. Sexual orientation (be it hetero-, homo- or bisexuality) is set before birth, involuntary, unchangeable and lifelong. It is everybody's task to discover their own orientation and come to terms with it. Homosexuals conservatively make up about 10% of the world population.
Yes, homosexuals exist in all cultures, all countries, all social classes and in all generations. They differ from the heterosexual majority only as far their sexual orientation is concerned. The question "are gays normal?" therefore, is equally absurd as the question "are black people normal?" It's a fact that gay people exist just as black people exist, and both are normal. In others cultures and other times in history (e.g. in classical Greece and Native American Indian tribes) homosexual relationships were regarded as perfectly normal and were even treated with high respect. Today, gay people can be found in all parts of public life: politics, the economy, sports and culture – there are gay doctors, lesbian teachers as well as gay workmen and lesbian sales assistants.
No. As we know today, homosexuality is also observed in nature by many animal species and is obviously a natural occurring sexual orientation. Homosexuals are therefore not in opposition to nature when they look for partnerships with people of their own sex. On the contrary, they act in agreement with their nature, the same way as it is entirely natural to find some people left handed rather than right handed, or occasionally ambidextrous. It's entirely natural and intuitive for homosexuals to look for a partner of their own sex rather than one of the opposite sex.
Probably not, since all gays and lesbians have biologically heterosexual parents. Also, their children (if they have children) are most always hetero- as opposed to homosexuals. It remains unclear to what extent homosexuality is genetically conditioned. To date, no scientific proof either way has been found. What has been shown, however, is that parents of homosexual or heterosexual children had nothing to do with the sexual orientation of their children. Any reproach that parents of homosexual children did something wrong somewhere in the raising of their children is groundless.
No, homosexual people are physically and mentally as healthy as other people. The World Health Organization (WHO), as well as many other professional medical associations have taken homosexuality off their lists of illnesses decades ago. What has been shown many times, however, is the fact that persecution and the resulting self repression are often the cause of psychological problems, in particular, ongoing attempts to suppress one's own sexuality are definitely damaging to one's own mental health.
As homosexuality is not an illness, this question is also absurd in principle. Notwithstanding, countless attempts at healing have been undertaken and are still propagated today by fundamentalist faiths. These attempts are fruitless. Nobody can be truly "reoriented". The only thing that can be achieved is the consistent suppression of one's sexual desired in the form of celibacy. In no way does this liberate the person from homosexuality, because from then on, focus is on denial, avoiding it altogether via abstinence. Homosexuality is and remains a fundamental part of one's personality and the feelings and desires related to it do not become weaker but stronger the more one tries to suppress them.
No, it also occurs in people who have never been in contact with other homosexuals. Sexual orientation (hetero-, homo, bisexuality) does not depend on people's surroundings. There are thus no reasons to worry about the alleged bad influence of homosexuals on children. Nobody can be seduced (or recruited, as fundamentalists charge) to become a homosexual if they don't already have the orientation. Most children and adolescents are surrounded by an overwhelming majority of heterosexual people, yet they remain oriented towards their own sex.
No, just as it is not amoral to be left-handed. Only specific types of behavior can be moral or amoral, but not a fundamental orientation. There are as many opportunities to behave morally or amorally with a partner of one's own sex as with one of the opposite sex. In Christian tradition it was always assumed that same-sex behavior was inherently amoral and lead straight to damnation, but the assumptions on which this tradition is founded are – as we know today – wrong. The errant assumption is that it is natural for human beings to love human beings of the opposite sex. In reality, it is only natural for human beings to love other human beings. For most people it is indeed human beings of the opposite sex that they love. For a minority, it's human beings of the same sex.
No. The percentage of those who prefer so-called perverted sexual practices is no greater among homosexuals than among heterosexuals. The same is true for pedophiles: in more cases the offender is heterosexual and the victim is a girl. The percentage of cases where the victim is a boy and the offender is therefore homosexual is less. Pedophilia is a psychological disorder involving psychotically insecure individuals who are compelled to exert their power over a victim. Although the physical abuses are technically sexual and doubtlessly unfulfilling with regard to sexual lust, the crux of the disorder is power, which is satisfied, and which explains why the victims are always powerless children.
Not generally. Most gay men pass undetected by their contemporaries. The cliché of all gay men being effeminate is a media construct or stereotype, seldom a norm among gays. There are, however, some gay men who do cross-dress as feminine and behave characteristically as such. More interesting is another general aspect: all people share qualities that are traditionally attributed to the opposite sex. Some qualities are considered typically female (for example, being sensitive to the needs of others, etc.) whereas other qualities are typically masculine (being strong, independent, fighting for himself, etc.). Independent of their biological gender, everyone has both kinds of qualities, but because gay people don't conform to stereotypical ideas of what a man is expected to be, they can more easily express feminine qualities in their personalities than their heterosexual counterparts. The same is true for some lesbian women who act more masculine, or "butch".
There is no good reason for this. Homosexuals are as normal and healthy as heterosexuals. They have the same needs and desires, therefore the same rules should apply. Since homosexuality is a lifelong condition, why should homosexuals spend their lives in abstinence or celibacy? Such a radical decision can only be taken by an individual out of his/her own free will, but can never be imposed from outside.