Normality is Not Hatred

Very recently the view that homosexuality is entirely normal has become not only widespread but compulsory in secular public discussion.

Leaders of thought tell us the change has been part of a general deepening of moral insight and improvement in the art of living. The older outlook oppressed millions out of fear, bigotry, and ignorance. We have learned better now, except for a few haters and dimbulbs who need to be re-educated or else shamed and shut up until death frees the world from their presence.

Many Catholic clergy, theologians, and ordinary believers more or less agree. We have been wrong, and if we don’t get with the program and accept the world’s guidance we’ll become irrelevant and vanish except for a few weirdoes no one sensible would want to associate with.

Such views have led to very high level suggestions that the Church “accept and value” the homosexual orientation and ramp up opposition to “unjust discrimination,” which now seems to include suggestions that there is something wrong with homosexuality. So any objection to the orientation, that it is objectively disordered, is now to be out of bounds. Inconsistent doctrine is to be treated as a hangover from the past to be dealt with in such a way as to neutralize it and effectively make it disappear.

To exacerbate the problem, most of those attached to the traditional view have difficulty arguing for it effectively. It seems plainly right to them, but why it is right cannot be stated in the terms on which public discussion is now carried on, which treat equal preference satisfaction as the highest good. The traditional view therefore comes to seem an irrational prejudice.

Still, the issue doesn’t go away. The older view continues to have distinguished proponents, and the vehement reactions to doubters suggests that supporters of the new view are conscious of a certain weakness in their position. Is something being overlooked? Can a sudden and total change of longstanding deeply-rooted understandings be trusted?

The change looks very much like an attempt to invert reality, an effort that once started becomes all-consuming and requires an ever more comprehensive system of lying to maintain. And the demands of correct thought are indeed becoming ever more far-reaching. Insistence that a relationship between two men is a marriage if they say the necessary vows has been followed by insistence that the men immediately become women if they announce they have. And that demand has been accompanied by attempts in the schools and elsewhere to get rid of indications of grammatical gender and other inflammatory expressions when dealing with children.

These supposed advances have been led not by saints and sages but by ideological activists, media propagandists, and other dubious characters. Supporters claim to speak for the “marginalized,” but are preferentially found among the rich, powerful, and well-placed, who evidently speak for themselves and those to whom they feel an affinity.

In that respect the movement is typical of modern politics, which promises liberation but delivers new forms of domination. The problem is basic. Today’s politics has no place for legitimate authority based on higher standards, so power must base itself on Choice, otherwise known as the Triumph of the Will. Hence the constant attempts to square the circle by identifying freedom with doing what we’re told. Earlier versions of the tendency gave us “people’s courts” and “people’s democracies.” Now we have bigoted tolerance and bullying anti-bullying campaigns. Whatever the slogan, the abolition of traditional patterns and transcendent standards means that the strongest, cleverest, and most unscrupulous win—supposedly on behalf of the innocent and defenseless.

Destruction is quicker and easier than legitimate development. The supposed improvement in the art of living is based on an inability to make distinctions, and its supposed benefits have included coarsening of culture and abandonment of marriage. Under such circumstances it looks very much like people have forgotten rather than learned something.

But what have they forgotten?

In an age of technology, wealth, and seemingly unlimited power they have forgotten human nature. The importance of that point passes educated people by. Human nature is so basic, and its influence so pervasive, that specialized expertise can’t deal with it effectively. It has to do with the basic patterns of life, and it’s impossible to force people to recognize patterns they don’t want to recognize. When pressed, they find ways of shrugging them off. People have choices, they can say, so if someone thinks the concept of human nature gives him something he can choose that thing and forget about the concept. If you like your marriage, you can keep your marriage, even after it’s been deprived of its basis in the nature of things.

Not so. In fact, the loss of an understanding of human nature means a loss of understanding what marriage is: the physical, social, and spiritual union of a man and a woman. Bringing forth new life is the natural function of such a union, so by its essential nature, based on the identity of the parties as man and woman, it is oriented toward very serious objective responsibilities that transcend personal interest and last a lifetime. If we realize what it is, we cannot ignore it or take it lightly. If we don’t, it can be whatever anyone wants, and in the end becomes impossible to take seriously.

Traditional sexual morality excluded sexual relations outside the marital union. When liberated from that limitation as a matter of principle, sex is stripped of its functions, becomes autonomous, and grows disruptive on account of its unruliness. Normalizing homosexuality and recognizing “gay marriage” establishes that liberation at the most fundamental level. The result is that it becomes impossible even in concept to give sex objective significance, or to understand marriage as a natural institution fundamental to society. Under such circumstances sex becomes a destructive rather than creative principle, and marriage a purely personal connection between two people for whatever purposes they find appealing.

It’s not just homosexuality and heterosexuality that must be accepted equally in the new order, it’s everything in between and off somewhere else. Masculinity and femininity can no longer be understood as substantive, functional, and complementary, and become arbitrary conceptions. The result is that masculinity cannot be civilized, nor femininity brought into an objective order in which the sexes cooperate in accordance with complementary strengths and make up for each other’s weaknesses. Loss of a working relation between the two principles means they become denatured or a parody of themselves: GI Joe and Barbie on the one hand, or various forms of androgyny on the other.

Under such circumstances children no longer have settled patterns of normal attitudes and behavior to grow into. Each must make up his own, taking his cues from peer pressure, pop culture, the strongest impulse, or the cleverest seducer. The body loses meaning, so young people become alienated from it, and express their alienation through tattoos, piercings, eating disorders, physical self-harm, and promiscuity.

Apart from fostering disordered lives, the liberation of sex from function and the conversion of marriage into a subjective and purely personal connection deeply affects social and political life. Family connections that lack an intrinsic function can no longer serve as an ordering principle but give way to money and bureaucracy. Career, fast food, and day care replace family. In the name of the weak, marginalized, and oppressed, human connections are fragmented and power flows to the top of the social hierarchy.

It seems clear that no humane person, and certainly no Catholic, can accept the new view of sex if he understands what is at stake. Such a claim sounds extreme today, since many nice people accept and live by that view. How can it be so bad if so many think it good? In our age of radical forgetting it seems that Catholics find themselves in the position they would have had in a Norse community full of brave, generous, and honorable fellows who saw marauding as basic to their way of life and identity as Vikings. They can praise what deserves praise in their surroundings, but must recognize that there is something basic missing from their neighbors’ outlook and way of life, and that the lack is acutely destructive.

Editor’s note: This column first appeared December 3, 2014 in Catholic World Report and is reprinted with permission. (Photo credit: Thibault Camus / AP)

James Kalb

By

James Kalb is a lawyer, independent scholar, and Catholic convert who lives in Brooklyn, New York. He is the author of The Tyranny of Liberalism: Understanding and Overcoming Administered Freedom, Inquisitorial Tolerance, and Equality by Command (ISI Books, 2008), and, most recently, Against Inclusiveness: How the Diversity Regime is Flattening America and the West and What to Do About It (Angelico Press, 2013).

  • Ann Hessenius

    One of the most insightful and powerful articles on this subject that I’ve ever read. Brilliant.

  • lifeknight

    Excellent discussion of why the square peg will not fit the round hole. Misplaced “charity” fosters the downfall of society and the Church. How do we stop the ball rolling down into the pit?

  • Hope

    All true. It eludes me how this logical argument is not plain to everyone.

  • Martha

    Agreed, Mr. Kalb, and well said! Your argument is substantial, and really quite bulletproof to anyone who has not completely closed their mind (which, I’m afraid, includes many these days).

  • Pamela

    Bravo, Mr. Kalb!

  • Vinny

    “In an age of technology, wealth, and seemingly unlimited power they have forgotten human nature.” I disgree. “They” KNOW that they are smart enough to CONTROL human nature.
    They will save us from our stupid selves. (Vanity of vanities)

  • GG

    Excellent essay.

  • St JD George

    Not in the Alinsky mind. He should have donated it to science to detect for signs of “normal” neural functioning and cerebral development. Unfortunately he has now spawned a new generation of disciples advocating to turn the world upside down … “and evil shall be called good, and good shall be called evil”.

    • CCIG

      His problems were not mental – they were spiritual. His “children” suffer from it and, now, we all.

      • St JD George

        I’m inclined to agree, but yet I still can’t help from viewing it as being some form of neurosis.

  • s;vbkr0boc,klos;

    The loneliness of man without God.

    • Vinny

      Boy do I see that in my nieces and nephews.

      • St JD George

        Boy do I see it when I walk down the street or read the news.

        • Vinny

          For some, if control is the goal, what do they do after that?? What’s the encore?

          • St JD George

            That is the entire essence of why to never compromise with the devil, or as they say “start down his slippery slope”. We all know Satan’s mission is to destroy Christ’s church on earth and he isn’t going to do it initially with a full frontal tactical assault, he’s cunning and so he advances in small battles with slick talking politicians leading his culture wars, seducing the weak to accept his logic based on warm, twisted feelings. It is sacrilege to make any analogy with climate you know what, but the melting of values seemed to be on a glacial scale relative to accelerated retreat of the past several years so be forewarned, the seas are rising and the devil will reap his harvest of drowned souls who fall without faith in his path. Maybe a bit over the top on that one, or not.

            • CCIG

              He is kicking it into high gear now and this truly is his final battle. His days are numbered and he knows it better than we. Good that God keeps the hour and day to himself. Bet that drive the evil one crazy every day from here on in. Come, Lord Jesus, Come!

              • St JD George

                High gear for sure, final battle … as you said, only Christ knows.

          • CCIG

            They have no plan but destruction. If they did, they’d lay it out and ague for it. If it were better, there would be no need to destroy. Destruction is the end, not the means. They are a one-trick dog.

        • CCIG

          Quickly coming to a head. Come, Lord Jesus, Come!

          • St JD George

            For sure I have moments of despair. At other times I view it almost in the 3rd person – I see it plainly, but I don’t know how to enter into their souls to open their eyes even though I have hope that this ship can be turned around if only by our faith reaching out and being a strong, guiding light to others.

    • CCIG

      And the Happiness of His favor!

  • ColdStanding

    Hear the Voice of Our Holy Mother pleading for you to abandon the wide road to perdition:

    There are 9 serious obstacles to the salvation of the soul that lead to the shipwreck of virtue, virtue being the ability to readily attain either natural or supernatural goods.

    1. Want of instruction. The Catholic Church is the teacher of mankind. Failure to catechize, which is a responsibility of the parent wrecks the process from the get go. The Church provides the content, the parents provide labor of teaching it and helping the child to understand. The materials to be covered are extensive and learned with difficulty in youth, let alone as an adult with our many commitments and responsibilities.
    2. Laxness and indulgence of the parents and their bad example. No, it is not a good idea to let your sons play video games for hours on end each day.
    3. Untractableness. This vice closes the ear because the student simply refuses to hear. This is an unwillingness to be taught.
    4. Inconstancy. How can natural virtue be attained without constant application? How can we gain God’s gifts of supernatural virtue unless we are constant in prayer?
    5. Fear of doing good. How many good works have we quailed at doing because of embarrassment?
    6. Bad Company. Libertines, purveyors of lewd discourse, dissemblers, and idle persons are favored places for the devil to place his snares. How can we avoid bad company unless we disassociate ourselves from them? Can’t be done. Yet there are many misguided souls in leadership positions of the Church that would have us mix freely with all four types I have given as to be avoided.
    7. Impurity. Images form memories and it is upon memories that the fallen angels ply their malicious trade, hence the great danger in pornography and licence in the imagination. Adultery and fornication are species of impurity. Sodomical relations bring the cultivation and preservation of all virtue to a grinding halt. There is no eternal life with until this most grave vice has been repudiated and suitable reparations enacted.
    8. Temptations. A very extensive subject. Without careful instruction as to how we are vulnerable to temptation and how we are tempted the preservation of virtue is made all the more difficult.
    9. Wealth. Leads to ease and enervation.

    The Holy Roman Catholic and Apostolic Faith is, bar none, the most difficult religion found among man. There simply is no way to practice it without many rules and much discipline. Our Lord and Savior said “My yoke is sweet and My burden light.” However, this is in comparison to the very great and insufferable burden of burning for all eternity in the fires of hell.

    We are done a great disservice when it is suggested that you can meet your obligations as a faithful Roman Catholic with no more than a few minor commitments and the occasional Mass.

    • R. K. Ich

      Great message! I love the way St. Paul put it in Colossians 3:

      If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth. For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God. When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall ye also appear with him in glory.

      Mortify therefore your members which are upon the earth; fornication, uncleanness, inordinate affection, evil concupiscence, and covetousness, which is idolatry: For which things’ sake the wrath of God cometh on the children of disobedience: In the which ye also walked some time, when ye lived in them. But now ye also put off all these; anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy communication out of your mouth. Lie not one to another, seeing that ye have put off the old man with his deeds; And have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of him that created him: Where there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcision nor uncircumcision, Barbarian, Scythian, bond nor free: but Christ is all, and in all.

      • ColdStanding

        Amen.

        I am fascinated by St. Paul’s lists. Ephesians 6:11 “Put ye on the the whole armor of God…” being a favorite. It is in Tradition that these lists come to life. They are seeds of charity seeking good ground out of which virtue may grow. I spend a good deal of my time reading the older books upon these subjects, which, parenthetically, is why my posts are peppered with obsolete and archaic usages.

        Blessed Francisco Palau has a great catechism on virtue and I find his method of hearing the mass most useful.

        http://www.carmelitasmisioneras.org/images/Palau/Palau-English.pdf

  • HartPonder

    The question all faithful Catholics should reflect on is what are God’s thoughts on the matter? 2 Timothy 3:16, 17 is a good place to prayerfully start. Romans 1:26-27, 1Cor 6:9-10 is noteworthy. Then I would reflect on CCC 2357-2359…

  • Glenn M. Ricketts

    Many Catholic clergy are, unlike JP II, afraid. They’d much rather condemn “judgmentalism” of the sort they’d see in this article or racism, sexism. homophobia, etc.,etc. As I wrote on another thread here recently, the shephards have abandoned their flock and often joined with the wolves.

    • CCIG

      Best for them and their spiritual children for them to find another line of work and go to confession. The floor in hell is paved with the skulls of priests and bishops. If you aren’t up for the fight against satan, you should not take him on. He is formidable and many enter into the priesthood with warm and fuzzy sentiments. When the hard lifting is required, they simply aren’t up to being the main TARGET of evil. Hats off to them for the intention and sentiment, we still love them and appreciate the effort, but either fight to win or tag out of the ring.

      • Glenn M. Ricketts

        i wonder how many of them even believe in Satan. A great triumph for the Evil One if they don’t.

  • Ian

    Ok let’s say homosexuality is “unnatural,” as if that matters, but so is heterosexual monogamy. Just because something’s natural doesn’t mean it’s good. And how do we determine what’s “natural” anyway?

    • CCIG

      I can’t answer your question. It is like “Describe green to a blind person.” However, I feel that heterosexual monogamy is pretty natural. If I love a woman, I will respect her as a person, and be faithful to her and I will want that from her. If I love her, I will want her to have my fidelity. If I give my fidelity, I will want to be given hers. Jealous torrents of anger come upon us naturally when we are betrayed. I rarely meet happy homosexuals or liberals. But they almost all blame others for their unhappiness. I’ll grant that seems true for most unhappy people. Couples that have been together for many years are beautiful to behold. And, yes, they are happy, deeply happy and in love.

      • Ian

        well I’ve met many happy homosexuals but I’ve also met many unhappy homosexuals. And I could say the same of heterosexuals. My question is: what do we mean by “natural?” If it’s what’s found in nature, as in the animal kingdom, then homosexuality is fine. It’s been found in Dolphins, chimps, etc. Heterosexual monogamy is rare. It’s found in Maybe penguins and some other birds. My question is: how do we objectively define what’s natural and why is being natural the optimal state? If we followed what was natural, murder would be even more prevalent than it currently is.

        • “well I’ve met many happy homosexuals but I’ve also met many unhappy homosexuals.”

          Oh so now we’re subject to the tyranny of hedonism. Splendid.

        • Terri Hemker

          Of course, traditional marriage in the OT was polygamy, rape victims having to marry their rapists, offering up your daughters for gang rape, and selling your daughter for two shekels and a pair of goats. Traditional OT marriage was more often about power and ownership of women as chattel, and contracts and treaties between two parties who treated the woman as a pawn in their games.

    • GG

      My sincere answer to you is to actually read about Church teaching. The question as you asked shows you have no concept of what She really teaches.

  • John Hobson

    “To exacerbate the problem, most of those attached to the traditional view have difficulty arguing for it effectively.”

    There’s a simple reason for that. The “traditional view” is indefensible.

    • Terry Mushroom

      “The “traditional view” is indefensible.”

      However, you don’t say why.

      • John Hobson

        Because homosexuals are also children of God. Christ tells us to love our neighbor as ourselves, and calling homosexuals “objectively disordered” is condemning them. Yes, you’ll quibble and say that homosexuals aren’t being called that, but that is just quibbling. In fact, homosexuals are hated and shunned by those who preach “the traditional view”. What makes it worse, is that you do it so sanctimoniously.

        • Terry Mushroom

          “In fact, homosexuals are hated and shunned by those who preach “the traditional view” ”

          What is your evidence for this?

          You give such a broad sweep answer that I suggest that you must demonstrate that your assertion applies to the majority who hold to the “traditional” view.

          • John Hobson

            Have you ever spoken to a homosexual Catholic about the way he or she is accepted by those who favor “the traditional view”? Clearly not.

            • Terry Mushroom

              Why are you so sure that I haven’t?

              You seem to assume that I’m not a homosexual by the tenor of your question. If so, how do you know?

              • John Hobson

                Are you a homosexual? I will admit that I have actually met one homosexual who supported the Party Line. I have met very many who feel that they were driven out of the Catholic Church because they were not acceptable to other Catholics. In the interests of full disclosure, my younger brother is one such.

                • Terry Mushroom

                  John

                  If Catholics by their words or actions have indicated to homosexuals that they are not acceptable because of the mere fact that they are homosexual – then that is very wrong and contrary to the teaching of Christ and His church. I cannot deny that it has never happened, although I’m not aware of it in my own personal knowledge.

                  That said, my I courteously suggest that just because some who follow the Party Line, as you call it, behave badly that you cannot say that all do so, as you suggested earlier?

                  • John Hobson

                    If you are unaware of it, then you haven’t been paying attention. No, it does not happen all the time. It does happen a lot of the time. I trust you are aware of what Aquinas said about willful ignorance in Summa Theologica I-II, q 6, art 3 and 8.

                    • Terry Mushroom

                      “It does happen a lot of the time.”

                      What is your evidence that the institutional church condemns homosexuals because they are homosexuals? (It’s a fair question!)

                    • John Hobson

                      I see that you are keeping yourself willfully ignorant. I should know by now that, as is typical of conservatives, your mind is made up, and mere facts will not sway you. Continuing this conversation with people who do not want to face reality is weary, stale, flat, and unprofitable. I hope you are happy in your own private reality. Those of us in the real world will just have to carry on.

                    • Terry Mushroom

                      John

                      I’m more than happy to face reality. All I’m asking is that you direct me to it by more than just making assertions.

                      I politely asked you a fair question. I have said nothing so far to even imply that my “mind is made up and mere facts will not sway” me. My problem is you won’t say what you believe the facts truly are.

                      You tell me that I’m a “conservative”. I suggest that “conservative” means different things in different countries. In England, where I am, it’s most popular use says that I vote for or am a member of a particular political party.

                    • Terri Hemker

                      Terry, I think you’re right that the majority of Catholics, at least here in America, do not condemn homosexuals. In fact, the majority of American Catholics approve of same sex marriage in the secular arena and were instrumental in supporting it in almost every state where it has now become legal.

                    • Terry Mushroom

                      Terri

                      In England & Wales, we have Civil Partnerships which confer the same legal consequences for homosexual partners as for heterosexuals. EG, pension rights etc etc.

                      I certainly agree that some homosexuals are and have been very badly treated indeed. Nevertheless, not everything that homosexual rights groups say should be received in respectful silence, as it were, to be immediately actioned without question.

                    • Louis E.

                      And absolutely everywhere it is currently legal,it needs to become illegal.

                    • Kathy English

                      Labeling them “intrinsically disordered” is hateful.

                    • Terry Mushroom

                      Kathy

                      The Church does not say that homosexuals are “intrinsically disordered”. Rather the Catholic Catechism says that “homosexual acts are intrinsically disordered” (Paragraph 2357) That is a very clear distinction.

                      Paragraph 2358 says “…They must be treated with respect, compassion and sensitivity. Every sign of unjust discrimination in their regard should be avoided…”

                    • Jim Russell

                      Ironic, that reference to Aquinas. Are you aware of what he said about willful homosexual behavior?

                    • John Hobson

                      And thank you for demonstrating my point about all you “traditionalists” loathing homosexuals.

                    • Jim Russell

                      Well, if you remain boxed in with groupspeak about how all people who think SSA is not a virtue *also* just loathe people with SSA, it’s time to wrap up. Adios.

                    • Terri Hemker

                      I think it rather hypocritical that conservatives pump millions of dollars (that could be much better spent) into legislation against same sex marriage while doing very little, if anything, to combat something Jesus actually did say something about, which is divorce and remarriage. Have you ever heard of conservatives or the Catholic Church pushing legislation to make divorce and remarriage illegal or to make adoption by remarried couples illegal? I also don’t see them pushing legislation against corrupt politicians or corporations who steal money from the rest of us. Fascinating, that, don’t you think? Imagine making one very small percentage of the population a scapegoat for all the ills of the nation (while ignoring the sins of rich and popular folks) and trying to force them to live according to your own religious beliefs! Now where have I seen that before?

                    • Augustus

                      If it wasn’t for extremely wealthy gay activists pumping millions of dollars into efforts to overturn long-standing state laws on marriage, supporters of traditional marriage would not have to spend a dime. Just because all “conservatives” don’t share the same legislative priorities says nothing about the legitimacy of their causes. There is no united front because, contrary to leftist stereotypes, conservatives are not a monolithic ideological group. The same can be said of the left, but I don’t expect you to treat both sides in an honest and objective manner. Your ignorant characterization of defenders of traditional marriage is a dishonest straw man worthy of a shill for the pelvic left.

                    • Terri Hemker

                      ‘Traditional marriage’, my friend, is selling your daughter for two shekels and a goat, having multiple wives, and gaining wives through barter, purchase, war, and rape, (and once in a while, for love),and using women as pawns in games of chess for the advancement of men and their tribes and kingdoms. Catholicism, and even Judaism are mere blips in the short history of mankind on earth and for most of that time they practiced the above. If you missed my earlier comments to other posters, I said quite openly that I didn’t believe all anti-gay-rights folks were haters of gays, and I also said that it was perfectly ok with me for RCC folk to cherish their own religious beliefs and speak up about them in the public square and vote for them and buy legislation for them. I also think it’s fine if RCCers want to spend their millions singling out LGBT people for a scapegoat but don’t expect me not to fight it and not to consider it hypocritical considering the recent scandals in the RCC, and their ‘free pass’ to other ‘grave sinners’ in the secular and sexual arenas. Now, if that makes me a shill for the left, I will be proud to be one. That you can only see the left in ‘pelvic issues’ while the RCC is famous for being obsessed with ‘pelvic issues’ is laughable. And you are free to call me any nasty names you like. I’m used to getting that from people who really are haters and I don’t even flinch. At my age, I could care less what your opinion of me is. I’m a free person and I’ve long outgrown the labels others would like to stamp on me. Cheers!

                    • Louis E.

                      Treating homosexuals as having sufficient mental capacity to recognize the need to reject their same-sex attraction as an influence on their behavior is not loathing them.Treating them as the helpless slaves of their same-sex attraction dehumanizes them.

                    • John Hobson

                      Insisting that they must live lives of perpetual celibacy is not fair to them. And claiming that this is God’s will is equally unfair. You are a living embodiment of Jesus’ condemnation of the Pharisees in Matthew 23, in that you tie up heavy burdens, hard to bear,* and lay them on the shoulders of others; but you yourself are unwilling to lift a finger to move them. You believe that it is the letter of the law which gives eternal life — you certainly act and speak that way.
                      YOU are the one dehumanizing homosexuals, in that you clearly do not give two hoots about them and their lives, preferring to mouth platitudes.

                    • Louis E.

                      Celibacy is EVERY individual’s default state,and can only be justly departed from for sufficient cause,a test that same-sex sexual attraction,because it is same-sex,can never meet.

                    • John Hobson

                      Yet you give these people no chance to change from celibacy, and you have the sheer chutzpah in pretending that you are being loving in doing so.
                      You clearly do not see homosexuals as actual people, with feelings and desires.

                    • Louis E.

                      I do see them as actual people.You think they are no better than the heinous and disgusting desire for the unconscionable practice of sexual activity with someone of the same sex,which I believe they need to recognize as one of the least important things about them.
                      Again…celibacy is every individual’s default.Not a hardship.And there is more love in the thankless task of insisting that people correct their behavior than in the easy cop-out of abandoning them to indulging their weaknesses.

                    • John Hobson

                      No, you do not see them as actual people. You call their sexual inclinations “heinous and disgusting”. Don’t try to pretend that you have nothing but contempt, fear and hatred for homosexuals. Be honest and admit it.

                    • Louis E.

                      Actual people have flaws that they are the better for admitting to be flaws.YOU are the liar here,desperate to ascribe desire for homosexuals to better themselves to animosity toward them,rather than admit that homosexual orientation can no more excuse homosexual activity than alcoholism can excuse getting drunk.

        • Terri Hemker

          And despite the Catechism’s clear directive to treat LGBT folks with dignity and justice and compassion, I rarely, if ever, see a conservative Christian of any stripe, speak up for LGBT folks’ rights not to be evicted or fired for the sole reason that they are gay, nor for an end to violence against them. Instead you have Bishops performing exorcisms to get rid of the ‘evil’ gays.

          • I rarely, if ever, see a conservative Christian of any stripe, speak up for LGBT folks’ rights not to be evicted or fired for the sole reason that they are gay, nor for an end to violence against them.

            Nobody knows you are gay, unless you make a big deal of it.

            • Terri Hemker

              And God knows, it’s a crime to be proud of who you are and not want to hide anymore; something heterosexuals never have to do. And that’s bigotry. Unless you can ‘pass’ for heterosexual, you get treated like dirt. Y’know, I had a black ever so great grandmother. Bet she understood that perfectly…

              • GG

                One has no “right” to be proud of their deviant desires.

                • Terri Hemker

                  One can call anyone one disagrees with ‘deviant’. That doesn’t make it so. The Klan calls interracial marriage ‘deviant’ and many call Catholicism a ‘deviant cult’. Doesn’t make it so. I don’t worry about what other people label me anymore. At my age I’ve learned that they have enough sins of their own that they ought to be worrying about. Too bad they are too busy sticking their noses into everyone else’s business and judging them. So sad….

              • God knows defining yourself by your temptations or sins is self demeaning.

                • Terri Hemker

                  God knows it’s not your place to define anyone else according to your religious beliefs. I can see where this is leading and, as a free person, I’m not interested in going there. I broke my chains a long, long time ago. Have a lovely evening and a Merry Christmas!

                  • What are you even talking about?

                • Kathy English

                  Don’t confuse yourself with God. Your views are your own.

                  • I never asserted deity. I merely stated that God knows everything I do and then some.
                    But your comment history shows a great deal of your views.

              • Louis E.

                It’s certainly offensive,arrogant,and stupid to treat one’s weakness for the heinous practice of same-sex sexual activity as anything to be proud of.There is no “bigotry” involved in preferring proper to wrongful behavior.

          • GG

            What a load.

            • Terri Hemker

              Yes, I agree, the Catholic Church doesn’t put its money where its mouth is….so they do, indeed, spew a whole wagon load of rubbish. Merry Christmas!

              • You seem like an expert on spewing rubbish.

                • Terri Hemker

                  One man’s trash is another man’s treasure….;-)

                  • Except when you call it rubbish, then it’s rubbish.

          • Terry Mushroom

            Terri

            “I rarely, if ever, see a conservative Christian of any stripe, speak up for LGBT folks’ rights not to be evicted or fired for the sole reason that they are gay,”

            Where has this happened? Where-ever it is must have very primitive employment law because, of course, it is wrong.

            ” you have Bishops performing exorcisms to get rid of the ‘evil’ gays.”

            Which bishops did this?

            • Terri Hemker

              In 29 states you can be fired for being gay; in 34 you can be fired for being transgender. Yes, it is wrong, but perfectly legal. In 29 states you can be evicted legally. In some areas, certain cities have voted in protections for LGBT folks but the state may still have none, except in states where only state or federal employees are protected.

              Bishop Paprocki performed an exorcism in ‘reparation for the sin of Illinois allowing same sex marriage’ (So I’ll change my mis-statement that he was trying to ‘get rid of’ the evil gays. He was making up to God for same sex marriage by holding an exorcism, which I’m sure most traditionalist Catholics think is a normal response. I’m a little appalled that he chose that particular ‘sin’ to ‘make up for’ considering the hundreds of other much more appalling things he could have chosen that cry out to God with a much louder sound, many of them involving little children. I won’t go there… I’m straight but I have a gay child. Every day I’m subjected to more news about people, including some very odd legislators, who would like to see my child dead or imprisoned solely for being gay. I have become a bit overprotective and very, very angry. I get very tired of gay folks being used as a scapegoat for the ills of the nation and the problems heterosexuals have with their own marriages. ). I appreciate your polite question and courtesy, thanks! Have a Merry Christmas!

              http://www.politifact.com/ohio/statements/2013/apr/02/progressohio/progressohio-says-ohio-lacks-law-prohibiting-emplo/
              http://pamshouseblend.firedoglake.com/2012/02/04/why-we-need-enda-you-can-still-be-fired-in-most-states-for-being-lgbt-ask-ellen/
              http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/11/21/thomas-paprocki-illinois-_n_4317432.html

              • Terry Mushroom

                Terri

                What you describe I find bizarre and very sad. Under English & Welsh law, an employment tribunal would rule unfair dismissal with compensation – and rightly so.

                While I don’t agree with same sex marriage, I agree with your sentiments that the good Bishop could have cried aloud to heaven about far worse things.

                I suspect that I’m not the only European to be baffled by the so called American culture wars. A happy Christmas to you as well. And a peaceful new year to you and your child.

                • Terri Hemker

                  Thank you so much, Terry! I was so happy to read your kind words and to find an understanding soul! I’m always delighted to find someone who can disagree with me but still remain sympathetic and courteous and your wish for justice in the employment area is very heartening to me. I have distant cousins in Ireland and my English bloodlines trace back to the 1700’s (so far; still working more on those. I love genealogy!) So, I often think I would like to move to England but I’m disabled and don’t have any idea how I’d manage it. The culture wars here frighten me to death! They baffle a lot of us, too! And, of course, I love you name, Lol! May you and yours find nothing but happiness in the new year! Peace!

                  • “spew a whole wagon load of rubbish”

                    Do tell us about courtesy.

                    • Terri Hemker

                      I give courtesy to the courteous…and not to the not.

                    • Except when you decide to issue a broadside like the one cited.

                  • Louis E.

                    You’re disabled besides mentally?

                    • Kathy English

                      How very Christian of you! Speaks of your character.

                    • Louis E.

                      I have never belonged to any religion or believed in the divine authorship of any putatively sacred text.

                • ” suspect that I’m not the only European to be baffled by the so called American culture wars.”
                  And I suspect I’m not the only American whose baffled by Europe in general, the hundreds of millions of dead from shooting wars and how we seem to need to constantly need to prop up Europe.

                  • Terry Mushroom

                    DE-173

                    I didn’t say anything out of criticism. The UK and US are truly two countries divided by a common language.

              • Louis E.

                While it is wrong to fire someone for the bare fact of homosexual orientation,it is certainly appropriate to penalize openly carrying on a same-sex sexual relationship.Until the USA stops treating laws protecting homosexual orientation as also protecting its gratification such laws should not be enacted.We don’t treat alcoholics as entitled to get drunk at will without penalty!
                As for the “transgender”,persons representing themselves as of the sex other than that determined by their genes are committing fraud,and those who knowingly treat them as if so or assist their deception (performing surgery,providing hormones,letting them use their desired sex bathroom) are accomplices to a conspiracy.

        • Jim Russell

          Hi, John! How are you–aside from fomenting utter nonsense about Church teaching, I mean! 🙂

          You see, the Church teaches that certain *inclinations* are disordered, among them same-sex attraction. Unless you intend to reduce the homosexual person to their *inclinations* (which the Church doesn’t do), I wouldn’t be so quick to complain that the Church calls “homosexuals” “objectively disordered”. Feel free to complain about what the Church *does* teach if you like. Just try to quote that teaching accurately. Thanks.

          • John Hobson

            As I have said elsewhere in this thread, homosexuals believe, CORRECTLY, that “intrinsically disordered” applies to them. Defenders of the official Church rejection of gay people pretend otherwise, but if you were being honest, you would admit I am correct.

            • Jim Russell

              Of course you’re not correct that those with SSA are somehow singled out. BUT, also, of course “objectively disordered” applies to ALL, not just “them.” There is no special designation of “disorder” just for those with SSA. The term “disorder” is equal-opportunity. The only difference is the kind of “disorder” being experienced.

              It’s a natural-law term. We all have concupiscence. We all experience disordered inclinations. Sexuality is ordered toward the conjugal love of a man and a woman. Anything having to do with sexuality that is not ordered in this way–anything, not just SSA–is objectively disordered.

              • Part of the problem is that if you say that homosexuality is part of your identity, so that it’s essential to who you are, then “homosexual acts and inclinations are intrinsically disordered” will mean the same to you as “YOU are intrinsically disordered.” Defining people by their sexual inclinations is a problem, and seems to be a rather recent development. As such it’s part of a bigger problem (the unattached self in modern technological society?)

                Another part of the problem is the view that the statement in the Catechism that people with homosexual tendencies should be treated with respect, compassion, and
                sensitivity is a special provision for those people and not a general rule for people with a strong inclination to do something they shouldn’t. By itself it doesn’t say a lot about what to do when someone identifies with the inclination and acts on it habitually.

                • Jim Russell

                  James–you’re right, and we have to continue stressing that the problem exists for ALL, not merely for those with SSA. We all face the issue of “becoming” what we “do”, so to speak, such that our own favored inclinations receive favored status so that we don’t have to “un-become” ourselves by willingly “doing” something virtuous in place of our vices.

                  So, yes, a great part of the problem is the willingness to identify publicly according to something we experience that is itself not in accord with virtue. Which is one of the reasons the US Bishops conclude that public self-identification as “gay” in parish life is “not helpful”….

                • Major914

                  “Defining people by their sexual inclinations is a problem, and seems to be a rather recent development. As such it’s part of a bigger problem (the unattached self in modern technological society?)”

                  The unattached self, the materialist/technological society, defining self and persons by sexual and other inclinations/characteristics–which are chickens, and which are eggs?

                  The scientistic bent of the mind that subtly predicates thought upon concrete causes in an absolute, original and final sense–which simultaneously abolishes true mystery altogether, and makes a petty fairy tale out of apparent mystery–produces all at once the radical unattachment of self, the materialst orientation, and the strong tendency toward psychological identification.

                  When abstract truth is throroughly excluded as the conceptually/structurally ordering basis for thought and thinking, the peculiar intellectual condition that results makes it exceedingly difficult to escape the gravitational pull, so-to-speak, of psychological identification with the imgages produced by perception and mentation…

            • Louis E.

              Their homosexual orientation is CORRECTLY described as a disorder…that does not speak to their character as human beings.Any person of any sexual orientation,or religious persuasion,or professional qualification,who defends homosexual orientation or activity is objectively WRONG.

              • John Hobson

                Any person who spouts the sort of tripe you just did is no follower of Christ.

                • Louis E.

                  I have never been religious,but there is no evidence that Jesus did not share my views on homosexuality.

        • “and calling homosexuals “objectively disordered” is condemning them.”

          Except that’s not what the CCC says.

          tradition has always declared that “homosexual ACTS are intrinsically disordered.”
          CCC 2357

          • John Hobson

            It is generally seen by homosexuals, IMHO correctly, that homosexuals are viewed by the institutional Church as being “intrinsically disordered”. Certainly, that is the way they are generally treated.

            • GG

              Do they see it that way because they are dishonest, or biased, or delusional?

              • John Hobson

                No, they see it because that is the way it is in reality. Those who deny this reality are the ones who are “dishonest, or biased, or delusional”.

                • Reality is not defined by your opinion, whether you call it humble or not.

                • Louis E.

                  No.Denouncing homosexual activity,as it richly deserves,is NOT hatred for those prone to it any more than attacking stealing expresses hatred for kleptomaniacs.

                  • John Hobson

                    It is hatred for homosexuals, and claiming that it is not is a lie.

                    • Louis E.

                      No.Only those with my views on homosexuality have the real best interests of homosexuals at heart.

            • I guess it helps to dismiss a claim if you hold on to the belief that the claimant is a male fide actor in spite of evidence to the contrary.

          • Paul McGuire

            That distinction only makes sense if you insist that there is no such thing as a gay man, only a man who happens to have sex with men. Thus, the people of the Catholic Church always insist that nobody is naturally and rightly born gay and meant to be that way. This flies in the face of the experience of every gay man out there, especially now that the conversion groups have largely been discredited.

            Since you can not rightly separate the acts from the person then for most gay men they are being called objectively disordered. While you are at it, you should call every woman who has anal sex with her husband objectively disordered as well.

            • Terri Hemker

              And I don’t understand why millions are spent on singling out same sex marriage to fight against when there are other ‘sins’ that the Church seems to not try to propose or advance legislation against like divorce and remarriage, another ‘mortal sin’, and adoption by divorced and remarried couples. (not that I would advocate such laws!) There are also corporations and slumlords who cheat their employees and mistreat their tenants and the public.There are industries that pollute the planet and rivers and have caused actual and documented harm to people, yet I don’t see the Church spending money to legislate against those. I don’t see the Church spending money against many things it considers gravely sinful, and aren’t all gravely sinful things, well, ‘gravely sinful’? Is one ‘sin unto death’ less of a ‘sin unto death’ than another? Why are gays made the scapegoat for the failure of heterosexual marriage and other ills? (Heck, we have some folks here in America that blame Hurricane Katrina, etc. on gays!)

              • A: LGBT people have become a cash cow issue for many Christian leaders.

            • Since you can not rightly separate the acts from the person ..
              Nonsense.

            • “Since you can not rightly separate the acts from the person…”

              Do you argue this in court?
              And sodomy is disordered, and unhygienic, no matter what the sex of the participant.

            • Louis E.

              No excuse for failure to separate the act from the person can possibly exist.

        • Louis E.

          Acknowledging that homosexuality is objectively a disorder is simple honesty…no different from observing that the blind have something wrong with their vision.Treating homosexuals as better than their homosexuality respects them more than treating them as defined by it.It is greater love to insist that they see their flaws as flaws than to tell them comforting lies they wish to hear.
          (Note that I am not and never have been religious,and do not regard this as a religious issue).

          • John Hobson

            You are honest about one thing: Your fear and loathing for homosexuals. Don’t try to pretend otherwise.

            • Louis E.

              You honestly pretend that I fear and loathe homosexuals?
              I realize that makes you feel more powerful and righteous,but it’s still not true.

  • Michael Paterson-Seymour

    The illustration at the head of the article shows a demonstration by « Manif pour tous » the grass-roots organization that opposes SSM.

    It was able to collect 700,000 signatures over three weeks to a petition to the Economic, Social, and Environmental Council and to bring a million protestors onto the streets of Paris, during its demonstrations in April and May last year. Its spokesperson, Mme Ludovine de la Rochère declared they would continue to fight against the “progress” of which the supporters of SSM speak – “that of merchandising the human body, of wombs for rent” [« celui de la marchandisation du corps, celui des ventres à louer »]

    « Manif pour tous » has constantly pointed to the fact that every jurisdiction that has introduced same-sex marriage has also permitted human gametes to be treated as articles of commerce or tolerated a market in babies, bespoke or prêt-à-porter through surrogate gestation, all currently forbidden under French law.

    The passage of the loi de 17 mai 2013 [Loi n° 2013-404] has done nothing to weaken the opposition of many French people, religious and secular, to the notion of a right to a child: a child, “battery-farmed,” that can be raised in the denial of man-woman complementarity. They remain firmly convinced that the purpose of adoption is to give a family to a child, not to give a child to adults and to defend the right of every child to a father and a mother, « la filiation PME »

    • CCIG

      France has been lost since God said it was lost. It will be lost until God relents. Same for the whole world.

  • St JD George

    Is this the new normal at our once vaulted Catholic Universities too … I’m saddened.

    http://www.redstate.com/2014/12/17/catholic-university-imposes-gag-order-prof/

  • CCIG

    I’ll have to remain an oddball, old timer until I die, which comes soon, hopefully, I have seen more than a body ought to see. Enough to last a lifetime (and it has!) Come, Lord Jesus, Come!

  • realist

    Here’s what I do: I tell these so-called “nice people” that age old stubborn axiom that just won’t never ever go away…It’s Adam and Eve not Adam and Steve! And, it will remain that way long after you’re all dead and quickly forgotten!

  • Paul McGuire

    LGBT activists of course recognize that for straight people the norm you describe as central to marriage works well and will continue to work. There is no dispute that for straight people the desire for connection ultimately leads to forming a union with someone of the opposite sex and raising children together.

    But the problem is that in insisting that this norm is the only truth, it causes harm to the many gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender people who experience things differently. Why is it that some groups have such a hard time recognizing that both realities can exist in harmony? Countless friends of mine both champion the progress of the gay rights movement while forming their own traditional marriages and raising children.

    That appeal is there for them even when there are those who do not consider themselves religious or believe in some holy purpose behind it all. It just exists for them as a natural expression of their inner self that desires for that connection. At the same time they recognize that other male friends find that same draw to be with other men. Others don’t fit within the gender binary.

    The two realities can and will continue to exist despite the cries that acceptance of same-sex marriage will erase straight marriage. What has yet to be presented by anyone pushing for the traditions in this article is any proof that the erasure is taking place.

    • Louis E.

      The “gay,lesbian,bisexual,and transgender people” harm themselves by thinking of themselves as such.They are helped by being brought to the realization that those tendencies of theirs are among the worst,but least important,things about them.

  • Harry

    It seems clear that no humane person, and certainly no Catholic, can accept the new view of sex if he understands what is at stake.

    “The pill” was the seed that grew into the tree that is “the new view of sex.”

    For there is no good tree that bringeth forth evil fruit; nor an evil tree that bringeth forth good fruit. For every tree is known by its fruit. (Lk 6:43-44)”

    The contemporary destruction of traditional morality where it relates in any way to human sexuality is the fruit of the pill. This is very bad fruit:

    Before the pill, people understood that sexual relations might produce a baby. That was how life worked. If a baby was indeed conceived then there was a tendency to accept that reality and deal with it with integrity, because it was known going in to a sexual relationship that a baby was a possible result.

    All that changed with the pill. The expectation was that no baby would be produced since the pill, made available to us by respectable modern medicine, would prevent that. If sexual relations resulted in a baby in spite of this, the baby was now a “mistake” instead of a fellow human being who had come into existence the same way everybody else does.

    What do we do with mistakes? We erase them. And erase them we have, with nearly sixty million innocent human beings murdered by surgical abortion in America alone, and God only knows how many newly conceived children have died because of the abortifacient nature of the pill; the child can be prevented from implanting in the womb due to pill-induced changes to the endometrium, which turn the home nature provides the brand new little boy or girl into a hostile environment.

    The pill also mainstreamed homosexual relations and homosexual marriage. If heterosexual married couples can enjoy sexual relations rendered infertile by the pill, what difference does it make that homosexual relations are inherently infertile? And, for that matter, why shouldn’t homosexual couples be able to marry, too?

    As foretold in Humanae Vitae, artificial contraception brought about the objectification of women. This has had tragic consequences, some of which are high divorce rates and the devastation and trauma broken homes bring upon children. The natural family is quickly disappearing. Thirty-six percent of all American children do not live with both biological parents. Fifty-five percent of American teenagers do not live with both biological parents. Twenty-seven percent of children live in single-parent homes.

    Being raised in a family as one of a set of siblings who all have the same biological parents, where those parents are committed to each other and to the raising of the children, seems to most often produce a well adjusted, productive adult able to find a partner willing to repeat the process. All other arrangements significantly decrease the odds of a successful outcome.

    Do you suppose it is time for the Church to aggressively make the case for traditional morality? And to aggressively expose the “bad fruit” artificial contraception has brought forth?

    The most aggressive force in destroying traditional morality as it relates to human sexuality is Planned Parenthood. They do this while maintaining a 501c3 tax exempt status. The Church ought to be at least as aggressive in telling the truth as PP is in its deception.

  • Kathy English

    Perhaps the traditionalists can’t make the argument against accepting our gay brethren because it makes no sense. God created gay people gay, who are we to say He is wrong?

  • Sasha

    This is an excellent and thought provoking article. All people should read and consider these words, not just Catholics.

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