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10/22/2007

Celibacy is not 'change'

by Jeremy Hooper

Last Thursday, we showed you how professional "ex-gay" Alan Chambers was responding to new research on the causation of homosexuality by saying that a gay gene's finding would not change his outlook on the righteousness of homosexuality. Well now, in a WorldNetDaily column posted over the weekend, Alan's Exodus International cohort, Randy Thomas, expounds on that line of thinking. He says, in part:

For me, this type of research poses an interesting set of questions. If they are able to identify a "gay gene" in homosexuals, how do they explain me? I was once an out-and-proud gay man who was fully supportive of gay socio/political goals, but now I have embraced a healthy heterosexual approach to relationships. If there is a "gay gene," it did not impede my ability to pursue such a dramatic change. "Gay gene" or not, the issue is settled for me.

If they prove that a "gay gene" exists in my DNA, why then aren't those genes controlling my life now? How was I able to willfully walk away from my pursuit of Mr. Right to live a content single life? How is it that I have defied the supposition that genetics overrule self-determination? The truth is that we all have the freedom to make decisions about our sexual behavior. I've chosen to live in congruence with my faith.

We respond:

Randy, all of the answers to your questions are revealed in this one line: "How was I able to willfully walk away from my pursuit of Mr. Right to live a content single life?" For you see, despite the way "ex-gays" like to present celibacy and single life, it is not a state that's converse from well-adjusted homosexual existence. It is a state thats converse from being sexually and/or romantically active. Celibacy and solitude are choices anyone can make for any number of reasons. Nobody is denying this fact.

This gay writer has mentioned many times that he, as a means to appease his non-accepting community and get through his younger years emotionally unscathed, once dated females. It was not for faith reasons that I made this choice, but it was a sort of "self-determination" that I was not strong enough to be an out gay teen in a rural Tennessee high school. I knew who I was. I knew the only gender to whom I had ever been attracted. However, I also knew that my family and community were far from the models of tolerance that I had wished they would be, and so I made the conscience decision to turn the fondness and natural kinship that I had always shared with the XX set into clumsy physical intimacy. If anything, these anthropological journeys only solidified what I had always known to be true: that I liked dudes. However, I presented myself to the outside world as a swinging ladies' man, and that world bought it without a question.

If the only question is whether or not an "ex-gay" can or should be able to stifle or overshadow their inner feelings in order to satisfy certain beliefs, then there is absolutely no debate. Everyone should be able to make their own decisions. However, the "ex-gay" movement has turned that concept on its ear, making it sound as if the socio-political goals, culture, and sex lives of gay people are all interconnected concepts, the likes of which must be embraced or rejected as a unit.
But why? Why, Randy, does your own personal decision to not live as a gay man supersede the fact that the vast majority in the gay community do wish to live their truths? Why does your own personal decision alter your views on protecting that sizable community from hate crimes, job bias, or legal inequality? Why does it mean that your personal decision is something that you can say is right and possible for everyone (which, no matter how much you guys try and deny it, is what "ex-gay" organizations like Exodus tell impressionable gays and their family members)? Why do your own faith views give you the right to say which genes (if one or several gay ones are pinpointed) are simple parts of the human condition, and which are "abnormalities"?

Single life is a perfectly fine goal for some. Others of us are quite happy seeking and/or living a happy and fulfilled life with a Mr. or Ms. Right. The issue at hand is not the dating and mating habits of the gay and "ex-gay" communities -- it's whether or not the "ex-gay" set is choosing to live a certain life despite their hardwiring. And the issue is why the "ex-gay" movement feels it is their right or even duty to muddy the waters of science and actuality with their personal faith views. It's about singling out the gay gene, but about whether "single" and "out" are diametrically opposed choices for gay Gene. In a world that doesn't have enough true love as it is, it's hard to see how stifling your internal drive for such is ever the right choice.

What if there really is a 'gay gene'? [WND]

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Your thoughts

It should probably be noted that Randy does, in fact, have a "girl""friend," a fact that he was more than happy to point out on his (now-private) Vox blog.

Or at least he used to. Maybe she left him for a straight man.

Posted by: suomichris | Oct 22, 2007 11:31:11 AM

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