Tuesday, February 19, 2013

C12.  In defiance of the common good, gays pursue a homosexual agenda and demand special rights.

A.  The Charge.  Conservative Christians in the United States have correctly detected a “homosexual agenda” (or “gay agenda”), which zealously promotes cultural acceptance of abnormal relationships.   These interventions are the mission of the so-called “gay-rights” organizations.  They seek legal changes so as to provide special privileges for their group, as seen in anti-discrimination laws and gay marriage. 

Despite their unconvincing denials, these groups are involved in recruiting heterosexuals for their nefarious purposes.  They seek either to convert them outright to the “homosexual lifestyle” or to make them what they term “gay friendly.”  Some of the victims of this propaganda adopt the characteristic homosexual obsession with grooming and appearance; these individuals are known as “metrosexuals.” This process contributes to the growing pansification of our society.

In a more sinister way those who pursue the gay agenda are seeking to normalize pedophilia, a criminal activity with abundant homosexual connections.

B.  Background.  This bugaboo is relatively recent.  In the US, the term "the gay agenda" entered public discourse in 1992 when the Family Research Council, a conservative Christian group, released a video series called The Gay Agenda as part of a pack of materials focusing on the "hidden gay agenda." In the same year the Oregon Citizens Alliance adopted this video as part of their campaign for Ballot Measure 9 to amend the Oregon Constitution to prevent what the OCA called special rights for gays, lesbians, and bisexuals. Paul Cameron— co-founder of the Institute for the Scientific Investigation of Sexuality in Lincoln, later renamed the Family Research Institute— appeared in the video, asserting that 75 percent of gay men regularly ingest feces and that 70-78 percent have had a sexually transmitted disease.  The first Gay Agenda video was followed by three other video presentations; The Gay Agenda in Public Education (1993), The Gay Agenda: March on Washington (1993), and a feature follow-up Stonewall: 25 Years of Deception (1994).

The label attaches to efforts to change government policies and laws on GLBT issues - such as same-sex marriage and civil unions, GBLT adoption, recognizing sexual orientation ad a protected civil-rights minority classification,  GLTBT military participation, inclusion of GLBT history and themes in public education, introduction of anti-bullying legislation to protect minors - as well as nongovernmental campaigns and individual actions designed to increase visibility and cultural acceptance of GLBT people, relationships, and identities. The label has also been used by some social conservatives to characterize alleged goals of LGBI-rights activists, such a the purported recruiting of  heterosexuals into what they term a “homosexual lifestyle.”

Some Christian critics of GLGT rights also deploy the idea of a homosexual agenda to assail a putative ideology they refer to as homosexualism, using the term homosexualists to describe people who seek to advance GLBT emancipation. The use of homosexualist in this way figured in 1995 in Scott Lively and Kevin Abrams' 1995 book The Pink Swastika, where it was taken "to refer to any person, homosexual or not, who actively promotes homosexuality as morally and socially equivalent to heterosexuality as a basis for social policy."

According to a Christian Broadcasting Network article by Paul Strand, the book After the Ball stemmed from "a 1988 summit of gay leaders in Warrenton, Virginia, who came together to agree on the agenda" and that "the two men [Kirk and Madsen] proposed using tactics on ‘straight’ America that are remarkably similar to the brainwashing methods of Mao Tse-Tung’s Communist Chinese – mixed with Madison Avenue’s most persuasive selling techniques." The article goes on to claim that films such as Brokeback Mountain are part of this "well-planned  propaganda campaign."

In 2003 US Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia wrote in his dissent in the landmark case Lawrence v. Texas that “[t]oday's opinion is the product of a Court, which is the product of a law-profession culture, that has largely signed on to the so-called homosexual agenda, by which I mean the agenda promoted by some homosexual activists directed at eliminating the moral opprobrium that has traditionally attached to homosexual conduct."

In 2005 James Dobson, director of Focus on the Family,  described the homosexual agenda as follows:”Those goals include universal acceptance of the gay lifestyle, discrediting of scriptures that condemn homosexuality, muzzling of the clergy and Christian media, granting of special privileges and rights in the law, overturning laws prohibiting pedophilia, indoctrinating children and future generations through public education, and securing all the legal benefits of marriage for any two or
more people who claim to have homosexual tendencies."

C.  Response.  The Gay and Lesbian Alliance against Defamation (GLAAD) characterizes the expression homosexual agenda as a "rhetorical invention of anti-gay extremists seeking to create a climate of fear by portraying the pursuit of civil rights for LGBT people as sinister.”  Campaigns based on a presumed "gay agenda" have been described as anti-gay propaganda by researchers and critics. GLAAD describes the linkage of homosexuality with pedophilia or child molestation as an attempt to "insinuate that lesbians and gay men pose a threat to society, to families, and to children in particular." GLAAD considers assertions linking pedophilia and homosexuality to be defamatory, damaging,and entirely inaccurate.

The most telling objection to the disparaging allegation of a gay agenda is this.  Under American democracy all groups are permitted to organize in order to achieve their basic rights.  In this light, most gay spokespeople agree on certain goals, including rejection of the sodomy laws and other harmful legislation, as well as same-sex marriage.  Advocating these goals does not constitute any demand for “special rights,” but simply a petition for equality of treatment. Moreover, since all sorts of other groups - including those favoring protection of the environment and opposing cruelty to animals - organize to advance their goals, why should GLBT people be barred from doing so?

BIBLIOGRAPHY.  Marshall Kirk and Hunter Madsen, After the Ball: How America Will Conquer Its Fear and Hatred of Gays in the ‘90s, New York: Doubleday, 1989.


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