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Love in different forms

Sam Costanzo | Friday, February 18, 2011

Based on what appears to be your own self-assuredness and apparent wisdom on related matters (“Acting for love,” Feb. 16), I ironically presume that you know nothing of what it feels like to be a self-identifying homosexual. It is precisely because of this that I strongly disagree with your statements on “holding hands, caressing, kissing” and their casual evidence in today’s society.

It is not because such intimate physical expressions mean nothing that I and people like me have long wished for the freedom and comfort to show our love publicly and without hesitation. Much to the contrary, it is because they may serve as a sensually powerful representation of one’s love for another that we hold them in such high esteem. And while you are quite right in sensing that we have felt “pangs” in our hearts at the sight of a straight couple in the midst of some display of affection, I feel you are again mistaken in asserting that any behavior not ordered towards marriage or its discernment is aimless. How shall straight persons at Notre Dame develop meaningful romantic relationships if the immediacy of questions concerning marriage and its discernment take precedence over all other forms of casual dating? Such a disjunctive conception of sexual behavior supports a monochromatic attitude toward dating that may actually contribute to the “hook-up” culture you stand so strongly against.

Additionally, I am aware of official Catholic teaching on homosexuality. To be concise about a complex issue, I disagree. The argument that one may be gifted a sexuality with some practical restrictions is one thing. To then say that another may be granted their own (“equally valued”) sexuality, one whose behavioral manifestation under any circumstances is sinful, is absurd and undermines any “teleology” you speak of.

I am in a relationship, and though my boyfriend and I are not big on “PDA,” we have no doubts about the legitimacy of our love for each other, most especially in light of Church teaching. And, more importantly, I hope that this tired, uncharitable Christian hypocrisy shames fewer and fewer couples, gay or otherwise, into yet another file of spiritless obedience.

Sam Costanzo


O’Neill Hall

Feb. 17