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Author Topic: LDS Church: "'Sexuality is not a choice'  (Read 2216 times)

Melamphoros

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LDS Church: "'Sexuality is not a choice'
« on: December 07, 2012, 12:57:38 pm »
But it's still a sin to act on it...

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The Mormon Church has launched a new website in an attempt to "encourage understanding" with gays and lesbians, an effort heralded by activists as a departure from the church's perceived hostility toward the LGBT community.


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Sage

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Re: LDS Church: "'Sexuality is not a choice'
« Reply #1 on: December 07, 2012, 01:02:22 pm »
Quote from: Melamphoros;83783
But it's still a sin to act on it...

 
Well, it wasn't til 1978 that the Mormon god changed his mind about black people, so it takes him awhile to come around. /sarcasm
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Melamphoros

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Re: LDS Church: "'Sexuality is not a choice'
« Reply #2 on: December 07, 2012, 01:10:19 pm »
Quote from: Sage;83784
Well, it wasn't til 1978 that the Mormon god changed his mind about black people, so it takes him awhile to come around. /sarcasm

 
I'm not sure, but someone told me that even THAT hasn't completely gone away.


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Faemon

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Re: LDS Church: "'Sexuality is not a choice'
« Reply #3 on: December 07, 2012, 01:17:59 pm »
Quote from: Melamphoros;83783
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Quote from: usnews;83783
The site includes an unusual statement for a major religious body: that sexuality, including same-sex attraction, is not a personal choice. But it maintains that acting on that attraction is still a "sin."

“What we do know is that the doctrine of the church – that sexual activity should only occur between a man and a woman who are married – has not changed and is not changing,” Elder Quentin Cook said in statement announcing the site's launch. “But what is changing and what needs to change is to help our own members and families understand how to deal with same-gender attraction.”


I was never a fan of "being gay is not a choice" argument. Obviously, opposing groups who insist that "you can just choose not to be gay" can just change it to "if you can't choose what to be then you can choose what to do" and, meanwhile, I sort of feel that quite a few homosexual relationships have been pathologized and devalued so that... well, so that some individuals could be rescued from being at war with themselves, and that's a good thing... but across the board I still find "born this way" a dehumanizing and faulty social and political argument.
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HeartShadow

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Re: LDS Church: "'Sexuality is not a choice'
« Reply #4 on: December 07, 2012, 01:28:58 pm »
Quote from: triple_entendre;83790
I was never a fan of "being gay is not a choice" argument. Obviously, opposing groups who insist that "you can just choose not to be gay" can just change it to "if you can't choose what to be then you can choose what to do" and, meanwhile, I sort of feel that quite a few homosexual relationships have been pathologized and devalued so that... well, so that some individuals could be rescued from being at war with themselves, and that's a good thing... but across the board I still find "born this way" a dehumanizing and faulty social and political argument.

 
*scratches head much*

How is "this is how I am, I was born this way" DEhumanizing?

I'd think "I chose to do something y'all find evil" would be a lot more dehumanizing, honestly.

Sage

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Re: LDS Church: "'Sexuality is not a choice'
« Reply #5 on: December 07, 2012, 01:59:40 pm »
Quote from: triple_entendre;83790
but across the board I still find "born this way" a dehumanizing and faulty social and political argument.

 
But... I didn't choose to find women attractive. I didn't choose to be genderfluid. I sure chose to act on those and embrace those parts of myself, which helped me feel more human and less alien, but... here I am, queer as day.
Maker, though the darkness comes upon me,
I shall embrace the light. I shall weather the storm.
I shall endure.
What you have created, no one can tear asunder.

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Faemon

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Re: LDS Church: "'Sexuality is not a choice'
« Reply #6 on: December 07, 2012, 02:08:01 pm »
Quote from: HeartShadow;83791
How is "this is how I am, I was born this way" DEhumanizing?

I'd think "I chose to do something y'all find evil" would be a lot more dehumanizing, honestly.

With the latter I think it can progress to, "It's not evil because... and actually your imposition that something so personal and harmless is evil, or at least objectively unfair."

With the former, while I don't have a problem with individuals identifying that and claiming it, the idea that it's purely genetic across the boards dismisses a lot of subtlety and sophistication in the development of a relationship with a specific person. I think it reduces it to a base of, "They're together because biology told both that the other was totally fuckable". I'm not personally comfortable with claiming that my sexual orientation was wired at birth, and I'm definitely not comfortable with other people telling me that my own relationships boil down to orientation that I was wired towards at birth, and that should be how I identify myself if I want to join in on the activism.

I'd continue to fight for equality on the basis of that I'm choosing to do something y'all find evil-- because it's my choice, not that judgment, that's right.

Quote from: Sage;83793
But... I didn't choose to find women attractive. I didn't choose to be genderfluid.

I did.

I'm not saying that you have to be the same way. But, while your individual journey and experience might find some acceptance in the vast opposition, I feel like I'm not allowed to say the above, because somehow "they'd" win... and, I'm seeing evidence that the bigger argument wasn't contingent on whether homosexuality is a choice or not.
« Last Edit: December 07, 2012, 02:17:13 pm by Faemon »
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HeartShadow

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LDS Church: "'Sexuality is not a choice'
« Reply #7 on: December 07, 2012, 02:31:50 pm »
Quote from: triple_entendre;83794
With the latter I think it can progress to, "It's not evil because... and actually your imposition that something so personal and harmless is evil, or at least objectively unfair."

With the former, while I don't have a problem with individuals identifying that and claiming it, the idea that it's purely genetic across the boards dismisses a lot of subtlety and sophistication in the development of a relationship with a specific person. I think it reduces it to a base of, "They're together because biology told both that the other was totally fuckable". I'm not personally comfortable with claiming that my sexual orientation was wired at birth, and I'm definitely not comfortable with other people telling me that my own relationships boil down to orientation that I was wired towards at birth, and that should be how I identify myself if I want to join in on the activism.

I'd continue to fight for equality on the basis of that I'm choosing to do something y'all find evil-- because it's my choice, not that judgment, that's right.



I did.

I'm not saying that you have to be the same way. But, while your individual journey and experience might find some acceptance in the vast opposition, I feel like I'm not allowed to say the above, because somehow "they'd" win... and, I'm seeing evidence that the bigger argument wasn't contingent on whether homosexuality is a choice or not.

I'm more confused.  A lot more.

Last I checked, actual studies about human sexuality boil down to "it's complicated."  At least some of it is probably inborn.  How people act on it isn't inborn, of course.

I never made a choice to be heterosexual.  I just am.  I do not find females sexually attractive.  Inborn or not, I never made a choice.

The LDS church is agreeing that people are not making a choice to be sexually attracted to the "wrong " people.  Where is this dehumanizing or anything else wrong?  Why is this not a positive step for glbt* people?  What on earth is the problem here?

Faemon

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Re: LDS Church: "'Sexuality is not a choice'
« Reply #8 on: December 07, 2012, 03:00:43 pm »
Quote from: HeartShadow;83796
Last I checked, actual studies about human sexuality boil down to "it's complicated."
I'd like to check those actual studies. I'd personally find them a comfort.
Quote
The LDS church is agreeing that people are not making a choice to be sexually attracted to the "wrong" people.  Where is this dehumanizing or anything else wrong?  Why is this not a positive step for glbt* people?  What on earth is the problem here?
(Why'd you put wrong in quotes?)

If you find this a positive step, then by all means please do elaborate if you're so inclined to.

I saw a continuing conflict, albeit one approaching clarity-- and said as much, that I'm glad to be hopeful that something I'd always considered a distraction from the main argument, might feature less in the activist culture now, seeing that the understanding of these issues from all sides seems to be moving along and evolving.

You seem to have a problem with me confusing you the more I explain my position... Which... is... not...my... problem? As I mentioned, I don't have a problem with your views, opinion, or experience. You don't confuse me.
« Last Edit: December 07, 2012, 03:05:35 pm by Faemon »
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Darkhawk

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Re: LDS Church: "'Sexuality is not a choice'
« Reply #9 on: December 07, 2012, 03:29:51 pm »
Quote from: HeartShadow;83796
Last I checked, actual studies about human sexuality boil down to "it's complicated."  At least some of it is probably inborn.

 
And of course "inborn" is not synonymous with "genetic", and someone who thinks it is is unfamiliar with the relevant science at best.
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Valentine

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Re: LDS Church: "'Sexuality is not a choice'
« Reply #10 on: December 07, 2012, 06:22:18 pm »
Quote from: HeartShadow;83791
*scratches head much*

How is "this is how I am, I was born this way" DEhumanizing?

I'd think "I chose to do something y'all find evil" would be a lot more dehumanizing, honestly.

 
I mean, for me--and I don't see my sexuality or gender as having been a matter of choice--I find the "born this way" argument worrisome mostly because it often strays into the territory of "If I could have chosen to be anything else, I would" which strays into the assumption that being queer or trans is a bad awful thing that nobody would choose to be if they weren't forced.  It's rhetorically useful, as an argument, but in the end too often relies on the assumption that if there were a choice, we'd never--no sensible person would ever--choose to be as we are.
It's a stepping stone, at best.
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HeartShadow

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Re: LDS Church: "'Sexuality is not a choice'
« Reply #11 on: December 07, 2012, 07:16:19 pm »
Quote from: Valentine;83814
I mean, for me--and I don't see my sexuality or gender as having been a matter of choice--I find the "born this way" argument worrisome mostly because it often strays into the territory of "If I could have chosen to be anything else, I would" which strays into the assumption that being queer or trans is a bad awful thing that nobody would choose to be if they weren't forced.  It's rhetorically useful, as an argument, but in the end too often relies on the assumption that if there were a choice, we'd never--no sensible person would ever--choose to be as we are.
It's a stepping stone, at best.

 
hmm.  I admit, this isn't something I have a personal stake in, so I'm seeing it from an outsider perspective.

But I think .. it's not so much that it's a bad awful thing, or anything else, but it is a more DIFFICULT path, being trans or queer or any other seriously non-standard sexuality.  It's not that you'd choose otherwise because it's WRONG, but given the choice, many would have chosen differently because of the social stigma.

Were all else equal, I'd agree that it could be a problematic argument - I see your point.  I just think that .. I mean, yes there are people that would choose a more difficult road.  But most people, I think, wouldn't *choose* to be gay or trans just because it's such a harder life.  Sure you might not change anything NOW looking BACK, but given the choice at ten to be "socially acceptable" or not ... I have a hard time seeing most ten year olds choosing the more difficult path.

Does that make sense?  I see the born-as argument saying people wouldn't choose a life that involves so many suicides and hate-crimes and the like.  Not that the LIFE is wrong, but that the pitfalls along the way are just HORRID.

Valentine

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Re: LDS Church: "'Sexuality is not a choice'
« Reply #12 on: December 07, 2012, 09:25:09 pm »
Quote from: HeartShadow;83824
hmm.  I admit, this isn't something I have a personal stake in, so I'm seeing it from an outsider perspective.

But I think .. it's not so much that it's a bad awful thing, or anything else, but it is a more DIFFICULT path, being trans or queer or any other seriously non-standard sexuality.  It's not that you'd choose otherwise because it's WRONG, but given the choice, many would have chosen differently because of the social stigma.

Were all else equal, I'd agree that it could be a problematic argument - I see your point.  I just think that .. I mean, yes there are people that would choose a more difficult road.  But most people, I think, wouldn't *choose* to be gay or trans just because it's such a harder life.  Sure you might not change anything NOW looking BACK, but given the choice at ten to be "socially acceptable" or not ... I have a hard time seeing most ten year olds choosing the more difficult path.

Does that make sense?  I see the born-as argument saying people wouldn't choose a life that involves so many suicides and hate-crimes and the like.  Not that the LIFE is wrong, but that the pitfalls along the way are just HORRID.

 
Of course!  And I think most people use it that way.  

It's more about...where that argument creeps to as the situation improves.  Like, I've definitely seen people try to explain themselves to 'phobic folks by flagellating themselves with "born this way," with that very distinct grovelling of, "I swear, I would never be this way if I'd had a choice," or, "I know you think it's bad but I can't help it," as a way of begging for decent treatment.  And that's perfectly understandable, but I want a situation where, even if I had chosen it, that would be seen as a beautiful and valid choice I ought to be holding my head high about.

I see "born this way" arguments used in ways that make it sound like an addiction, or a congenital defect, and I also see the other side of the aisle--straight people, cis people--using them, even with the best of intentions, as incitements for pity.  "They can't help being what they are, and deserve our compassion," as though we're diseased.  It's complicated, you know?

It's like--a lot of people try to find and prove a biological basis for queerness or trans-ness.  And some of them are doing it to prove that we are what we are and can't and shouldn't be asked to change...and some of them are doing it trying to find a "cure."  It gets very muddy.

 I try to use arguments that emphasize that I'm proud of what I am because, someday, when we win this, I want that to be the primary note.  You're of course right that nobody would choose the challenges of the oppressions we face--I just want arguments and narratives that emphasize that it's the oppression that has to change, not us, and that we don't bring it on ourselves by being what we are, it's brought to us through other people's choices.
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Lokabrenna

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Re: LDS Church: "'Sexuality is not a choice'
« Reply #13 on: December 07, 2012, 10:28:33 pm »
Quote from: Sage;83784
Well, it wasn't til 1978 that the Mormon god changed his mind about black people, so it takes him awhile to come around. /sarcasm


Did anyone notice this quote from the website?

"Though some people, including those resisting same-sex attraction, may not have the opportunity to marry a person of the opposite sex in this life, a just God will provide them with ample opportunity to do so in the next."

LOL WUT?

It doesn't sound like they're saying that it's not a choice. at all. LOL, just wait, when we all get to Heaven we'll all have "proper" opposite-sex relationships.

Sounds like Hell to me....

Annie Roonie

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Re: LDS Church: "'Sexuality is not a choice'
« Reply #14 on: December 08, 2012, 12:05:24 am »
Quote from: Melamphoros;83783
But it's still a sin to act on it...



This reminds me of Pat Robertson's recent admission that the Earth is older than 6k years. And the much earlier HHDL's urging his followers to go with science.

Though LDS and Robertson have hefty amounts of built in back pedaling and ambiguity in their words, they've both been pretty clear that their in it so they can keep their money numbers from declining or getting somewhat stingy bummed. HHDL was pretty succinct and hasn't qualified his statement that I know of.

I wonder what other organization is going to vaguely show some half sense of a blurry idea to them in order to win pocketbook priority hearts and minds. It won't be NASA. I don't see a "Yeah. I guess you could say that without J-e-s-u-s we'd never learned a thing. Some of those letters play a predominant role in our work."

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