Soap Box:  Homosexuality:  Government, Church, & Morality

October 29, 2003

My dictionary defines homosexual as "relating to or marked by a sexual interest in the same sex as oneself". In other words, it's guys being with guys, and gals being with gals. It's an issue that's in the daily news about every other day, whether it be workplace rights, criminal laws, or religious establishments. In this article I will present my views on the subject as it relates to our government and religion, specifically the Christian religions that base their beliefs off the King James version of the bible. Given the controversial nature of this subject, I'm sure some people will consider themselves offended by what I have to write. That is not my intention, but rather what seems to be an unavoidable outcome in today's society. Although I cannot promise that you will not get your feelings hurt, I do promise to be logical and open minded in my approach.

Although there are many derogatory terms used to refer to homosexuals, though homosexuals themselves prefer the term "gay".  The fact that offensive words exists demonstrates how charged this topic is. You don't for example, know of any offensive words describing a tree do you? For the sake of this article, I'll use the term gay to refer to homosexuals. Homosexuality has been demonized since recorded history began. Only in recent years has society been more accepting of it. Although there is still some negative publicity with it, it seems that the biggest problem with announcing that you are gay is not how society will react, but rather how your family will react to the news. More and more society is embracing the lifestyle of homosexuals as just another choice, not to be discriminated against.

Are gay people bad? Is being gay bad? Is it natural or normal? First of all, how many of you know a person that is gay? How many of you knew a person that was gay while you were growing up? I must admit, I only know of one acquaintance that is truly, without a doubt gay. Growing up there was a fellow that was suspected of being gay, but it was never confirmed. But that didn't stop the teasing and harsh comments from his classmates. Society wasn't quite as accepting back then. But considering the one gay guy I know today, I can honestly say that the only difference between him and my other male friends is his sexual orientation. I didn't know he was gay until he decided to let it be known. He's an honest person that seems to follow the golden rule and does his best to be a productive member of society. Is he bad because he's gay? No! Apart from religion (i.e. what the bible says on the subject), I find no fault with gay people. I don't think they are inherently evil or wicked. They are just like everyone else you meet.

Is being gay natural or normal? I guess it depends on how you define those terms. While it might seem normal to the homosexual, I don't think it is natural or normal as it relates to our species. Let's face it, if being gay was natural, we probably would have died out as a species millions of years ago. It takes a male and a female to make another person. Two of the same sex don't produce an offspring. But interestingly, research seems to be showing that the choice of being homosexual is a genetic thing. It seems that their brains are wired that way. This is contrary to what most of those that denounce gays believe because they have considered it as a lifestyle choice, rather than an evolutionary calling. I do think it unnatural in a propagation of the species sense. If it's genetic, I think it's a genetic flaw or abnormality. But the common notion that it's a lifestyle choice is what has caused gays to be ostracized in our society so much. There is this grand fear that gay people will influence our children to grow up and be gay. And while the scientific evidence seems to support a more natural driving force behind homosexuality, I do think there is at least some rationale in this belief of environmental influence. Let's face it, we do emulate what we see, hear, and grow up in. And since the human species actually has sex for pleasure, whereas most animals have sex for reproduction, I would think environmental influences would have some effect on the sexual partners that people choose. Will being around gay people make a person gay? I don't think so. But I do think being around gay people may cause some people to at least consider sexual experimentation with the same sex.

How should the government treat gay people? In my opinion, gay people should be treated just like every body else. We cannot escape the fact that there will be gay unions, marriages if you will, in our society, regardless of whether or not that are officially recognized by the government. It's the government's job to serve the people, not enforce what they consider moral issues. Gay couples are consenting adults. If the government is going to apply certain rules to people solely because they are in a union (i.e. man and wife), then those rules should also apply if the union happens to be a same sex union. Yes, I'm saying if married heterosexual couples get tax breaks, then homosexual couples should get tax breaks. But before that happens, states must recognize gay marriages as legal. That also means that the rules for divorce also apply. People need to quit looking to the government for rules on morality. A step toward that goal has recently been taken in Texas. An old anti-sodomy has finally been abolished, and rightfully so in my opinion. It's not that I'm pro-sodomy, it's that the law wasn't equally applied to all the residents of Texas. The law was squarely aimed at gay couples because heterosexual couples could legally practice sodomy without fear of prosecution. If Texas wanted a law against sodomy, then it should have applied it to all its citizens.

The big news lately on the homosexual front has been whether or not churches can or should have ministers and priests that are gay. This issue is tearing some churches apart. My opinion is no, you cannot be a leader of a church, or a true Christian that follows the teachings of the King James bible, if you are a homosexual. Let me clarify that I'm talking about a person doing homosexual acts, not a person that cannot help but be attracted to the same sex. Of course, some churches may argue that the attraction they feel is really sin and they can repent and all will be well. But as I've stated above, I think homosexuality is more deeply rooted in genetics than people once believed. But even so, the bible is clearly against homosexual acts. Consider the following verses:

Leviticus 18:22 Thou shalt not lie with mankind, as with womankind: it is abomination.

Leviticus 20:13 If a man also lie with mankind, as he lieth with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination: they shall surely be put to death; their blood shall be upon them.

Romans 1:26 For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature:

Romans 1:27 And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompense of their error which was meet.

If you are a sexually active homosexual then you are a sinner by the bible's definition and you will fall short of the glory of God. Likewise, you should not be qualified to be a church leader. Although church leaders are far from being perfect, those that actively participate in what the bible deems a sin should not be in a position of religious power. And it's not just an anti-gay stance. I also believe the same of a person that actively participates in adultery, fornication, lies, drunkenness, etc. Unless you at least try to abstain from all those things listed as sinful in the bible, you should not lead others within the church. The obvious pitfall is that if you do not condemn yourself for an obvious sin, then you may not condemn other members of the congregation that also commit the same sin. As a leader, you are suppose to help lead people away from sin, not endorse it (either directly by blessing it or indirectly by participating in it).

And although the bible is particularly harsh on these sins, with death and hell being the required punishment, I don't think that gay people are evil because they sin. There are quite many people that are good in every way yet still are considered sinners by the bible's standard. I have no doubt that the priests and ministers that are gay are also good, wholesome people. That's what you hear in the news, from their proponents. That still doesn't change the fact that their instruction guide for life, the bible, clearly states that their lifestyle is a sin and is therefore condemned. Part of the problem is that political correctness in our society is running amok. Just because society and government as a whole has become more tolerate of gay people doesn't mean the bible and God has become more tolerate of sin. Rules and laws have changed while the bible and God have not. Churches should not sell out their faith in order to fit in with worldly views.

There you have it. Now you know why I applaud when the government abandons old laws aimed at punishing homosexuals, yet cringe when I hear of yet another homosexual trying to be ordained as a religious leader. Government should stay out of the morality business and religions should follow their bibles.

Jeff Polston

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