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Orson Scott Card: Science on gays falls short

Published: Thursday, Aug. 7 2008 12:07 a.m. MDT

THE CLAIMS OF those who support gay marriage rest entirely on the idea that science has proved several things:

1. Gays have no choice whatsoever. Genes or hormones make them gay, and it is unreasonable to expect them to control or limit their behavior in any way.

2. Even if there is an element of choice (or preventable environmental influence), there is no reason to ask gays to control or limit their behavior, because homosexuality causes no harm to anyone.

3. Because the first two points have been "scientifically proved," it is unfair to give any kind of legal or social preference to the actions and relationships of heterosexuals. Any such preference is like telling gays to "sit in the back of the bus."

After a lifetime spent in theater and the arts, of course, I am well-acquainted with many homosexuals; and because of who they are and who I am, I am close friends with several.

They have never directly harmed me, nor I them. Many have helped me in my life — and I them. We get along just fine.

So what's the big deal? If science says that homosexuality is natural, uncontrollable and harmless, why would any decent person — especially one who knows and likes, or even loves, a number of homosexuals — wish to deprive them of something they desire so much?

Here's why:

1. Science does not say that gays have no choice whatsoever.

2. Science does not say that homosexuality harms no one, and that homosexual liaisons are as valuable to society as marriage.

3. It is not unfair to give unique preference to monogamous heterosexual relationships, if that preference and those marriages benefit all of society — including homosexuals or potential homosexuals.

Many people believe that because the American Psychiatric Association voted in 1973 to stop treating homosexuality as a disorder, this means that the science is settled — homosexuality is as normal as heterosexuality.

But science is not done by majority vote — particularly not by majority vote that was intensely pressured and cajoled by homosexual activists.

"Normal." The leading scientific studies in support of this change were highly questionable. Evelyn Hooker's study, for instance, which purported to show that homosexuals were perfectly normal, studied a group of homosexuals who were members of organizations "extremely anxious to provide their most admirable members," and "she removed from the sample anyone who struck her as obviously pathological" (Rosenberg, P.. 37).

Given the way she stacked the deck, the surprise was that she didn't find that homosexuality was better than heterosexuality.

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