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Gay marriage provokes many question

Observer Viewpoint | Friday, October 17, 2003

In her Oct. 16 letter challenging Charles Rice’s stance on gay marriage, Jess Reddinger argues that homosexuality is not “intrinsically wrong” and that the inclination to it is not disordered. She bases this statement on the idea that “deny[ing] the right of someone to express their affection for another is not only abominable, but also inconsistent of what we value as love.” This statement implies that any consensual sexual act – including sodomy, fellatio, incest, violent sexual practices and polygamy – may be defended as the “right for someone to express their love for another.” Reddinger cannot allow one unnatural action without allowing all of the rest. The only consistent standard on which sexual acts are allowed or disbarred is the standard of natural law, and the natural law shows that the only true expression of sexuality is between a man and a woman in a way that is open per se to child bearing.

Reddinger also states that homosexuality is not a psychological disorder as listed in the DSM-IV. While this is true, she does not explain why it is absent. According to the website of the National Association for Research and Therapy of Homosexuals, the 1974 vote of the American Psychiatric Association to remove homosexuality from the DSM-IV “was taken with unconventional speed that circumvented normal channels for consideration of the issues because of explicit threats from gay rights groups to disrupt APA conventions and research.” Four years after the removal, the majority of psychiatrists still believed homosexuality was disordered.

Reddinger assumes these points when stating in the beginning of the letter that the love and nurturing a family provides is more important than its composition. Of course, the Dutch study cited by Rice proves that stable “gay” relationships are the exception, not the rule. But even if it could be shown that gay families are generally loving, stable environments, they would still be immoral because no end justifies an evil means.

Reddinger ends with the typical song and dance about how intolerant Rice is. But what does tolerance gain? A 1997 Canadian study showed that a 20 year-old homosexual man can expect a life expectancy 8 to 20 years shorter than that of the average man. If tolerance means taking a position that can rob society of so many people before their time has come, tolerance is a very strange virtue indeed.

Michael GerardifreshmanKeough HallOct. 16