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Audio: Ryan T. Anderson says sexual orientation speaks to content of character; links it to sadomasochism, polyamory

by Jeremy Hooper

Sexual orientation is not "shorthand for certain kinds of actions." Obviously. Sexual orientation is a scientifically recognized sexual identity relating to human beings and the gender to which we are attracted.

If you are going to talk about homosexuality, the logical thing to which you would compare it is heterosexuality. Again, obviously. Chosen acts and behaviors, and even gender identity, exist within the spectrum of sexual orientation. Acts (in this case lifestyle choices, accurately) like sadomasochism of the choice to have multiple partners (often a religious choice, we should mention) are found across the heterosexual, homosexual, bisexual spectrum.

And no one's sexual orientation speaks to his or her character. Again, friggin' obviously!!! There are terrible straight people and amazing straight people. There are terrible gay people and amazing gay people. And so on. All of us—gay or straight, black or white, religious or not, man or woman—display the content of our character through the way we conduct ourselves, the way we treat others, the goals and values we prop up for our lives, and our general conduct in this shared society of ours.

But now listen to this outrageous clip from the Heritage Foundation's Ryan T. Anderson. While speaking on a "religious freedom" panel at the Catholic Information Center (obviously?), Ryan "I don't work to harm" Anderson attempted to disconnect sexual orientation from race by demanding that sexual orientation is some sort of "short hand for certain kinds of actions" and should, in fact, be used to judge people's character content. And therefore LGBT people can be discriminated against in public accommodation, marriage, or anything else, so goes Ryan's narrative:

FULL SPEECH: Catholic Information Center

Here the reaction he got a :48 ("that's enough")? Well that's of course what he wanted with his breathless rundown of what sexual orientation supposedly is (even though it isn't. At all.). It's what Ryan and his movement always want. They don't want us to be seen as heterosexual counterparts. Ryan and his team believe they and only they have the one true sexual orientation and the rest of us just have some sort of "scary" bag of scariness designed for their decrial, if not banning.

And no, as a business owner, I do not have a "legitimate" right to evaluate the sexual orientations of my potential customers in order to deny them basic services like cakes and flowers any more than those who sought a "legitimate" right to discriminate on their own evaluations of race possessed that supposed right. Let's be clear here: those who wanted to discriminate against Black people in this country very much saw themselves as judging the contents of the African-American's character. Just because Ryan says that this time is different doesn't make it so.

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