This has been bugging me for a long time now. I get it that most people believe that being gay or homosexual is an abomination, but they should be able to marry whoever they want to. Right? I don't know if it's just me who feels this way, but please share your opinion.

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when a person is bigoted, they don't think logically, so "they are an abomination, but they still should have the right to marry who they want" is not something they are capable of thinking

It was also an extremely easy moral standard for the vast majority of people to uphold themselves.

Lol.  True that.

It's not just you. It's an equality issue plain and simple. It needs to be treated as such.

Actually more than half of Americans support marriage equality. We don't vote on issues like that though. To be honest it should never come to a vote anyway because people's rights should never be put up for a vote. Unfortunately we have a very persistent and powerful evangelical lobby that holds our elected officials hostage. I would be willing to bet that there are more in congress that support gay marriage than are willing to admit it. Thankfully our politicians won't be able to ignore the clear unconstitutionality of discriminating against gays that would like to get married for much longer. The support for gay marriage is growing stronger and stronger.

"people's rights should never be put up for a vote."

how do you expect people to gain rights, then? Women and black people gained civil rights because of votes. Do you expect some sort of violent revolution this time around?

There is hope. Twenty years ago I was opposed to same sex relationships, let alone marriage. People can and do change as I have. Those who are firmly entrenched in religious dogma will not be so easily swayed. Some Christians and Jews can accept the idea of same sex partnerships but forget about those of Islamic faith. They are extremely intolerant of such notions. And the idea that our country's laws can be biased and discriminatory towards those who choose an alternative lifestyle sits just fine with the bigoted religious zealots. It is a control issue for them. They must maintain control otherwise it is seen as a sign of weakness and conforming to the secular world. 

I used to be against homosexuality too.  Figured out I was bisexual and had to rethink things.  Doh!  Probably helped contribute to my discovery of atheism.

I suspect on some level it could be insecurity. "How does my support of gay marriage reflect on me?" and so on and so forth. After that I'd suspect a large part of it is ignorance.

For religious people I think that on this issue, like many issues that religious people face, they have simply abdicated their thought processes to the church and have left the really 'hard' decisions to the doctrine. For me, that is what frustrates me the most. Reasoned thinkers end up at a conclusion after considerable thought and analysis, living through the angst and discomfort it takes to arrive at that conclusion, whereas many religious folks start at the conclusion and then look around for evidence to support it. For something as superficial as gay marriage it's an easy black and white issue to rally around, and I think a considerable amount of social pressure or social support to be against it, goes along with that conclusion.

Unlike atheists who typically don't get together every Sunday and compete with each other about who is the most non-pious, the religious folks do in the opposite sense of course.

For the non-religious I am completely baffled by someone's lack of support. If you look around at mammals, a measurable percentage of them engage in same sex relationships and we don't stand out as an exception to that pattern. So unless god is around to say its wrong, its pretty natural.

I also think that many people that are against gay marriage or homosexuality in general spend WAY more time thinking about the actual sex acts than I do.

For me, that is what frustrates me the most. Reasoned thinkers end up at a conclusion after considerable thought and analysis, living through the angst and discomfort it takes to arrive at that conclusion...

That's so true.  And doesn't it just burn when a theist tells you you're being arrogant, closed-minded, or looking for the easy way out, having reached the conclusion that there is no God.  I tried to explain what you've said, but it didn't penetrate.

When a theist claims you don't have an open mind, remind them that there's nothing more closed-minded than believing something on faith. In other words, if they are open to changing their mind, then they aren't being faithful.

James Cox posted on another thread about Predator and Prey mentality and I think that is at the root of the matter.  I agree with Marc that religious people start with an opinion and then seek support for it in their texts, so I'm not addressing the religious aspect at all.  I need to generalise so please forgive those generalisations that don't apply to you as an individual.

Most men would see their initial interaction with a potential female mate as a Predatory one, where the woman is the Prey.  Added to that, they also see the initial interaction as a sexual one.

In support of this, a man (let's think of him as a lion) may find the sight of two women having sex (let's think of them as deer) as rather appealing.  Here, we have a Predator enjoying the sight of not one, but two or more of his Prey.  Threatening?  No, of course not.  Appealing?  Quite possibly, actually almost probable.

But now let's think of the same man/lion, visualising two men having sex.  Now we have two more Predators interacting, and the sexual concept (anal penetration) also carries an imaginary personal pain, as well as the 'feces are dirty" knowledge. Threatening?  Yes.  Predator faces two more Predators - fear is an instinctive reaction.  The Predator has to envisage being potential Prey, and that is not acceptable.

There is a lot more surrounding this instinct based image, but I feel that this is where the acceptance problem has its roots.

If public opinion was sought only to legalise lesbian marriages, I'd bet that there would be no real problem, because to the male, it carries no instinctive threat.



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