Some Thoughts Spurred by the LGBT Discussion

Manny Pacquiao stirred a hornet’s nest with what he said, but I’ll not talk about him, as he could have been used as a distraction from the discovery of a certain young lady receiving nearly P6 million annual salary from the SSS. But the issue did inspire some random thoughts and allowed me to resume and ultimately finish this thing about LGBT and other things.

Some time ago, I posted a comment under a video by Steph Micayle of Singapore, the one who titled her video “Why I’m not proud to be Singaporean.” She supported gay marriage as one of her video’s points and agrees with the side that the homosexual orientation is natural. I differ, believing that sexual orientation is a choice (one gay person himself actually supported this). But I also raised that even if gay love may not be natural, it should still be allowed because, simply, choices should be allowed. I am actually for allowing gays to have their union, but I simply have a different approach to the argument.

step_mp

Someone else, apparently pro-gay, later attacked me in the thread saying I was anti-gay for not agreeing with the natural justification. But I agreed with tolerance and allowing gays. I agreed that it’s better to not criminalize it and allow it. Too bad the commenter still disbelieved me, but never mind. Of course, pedophilia is different, and the assumption that the LGBT movement is only a cover for efforts to legalize pedophilia is still on a slippery slope.

I do understand why people use the natural argument to support gay marriage. This is based on the naturalist assumption in philosophy that something natural is good. If it is unnatural, it is bad or evil, and must not be done.

However, I hold a different view. Not everything natural may be right. For example, men having sex with multiple partners, even when married, is rationalized by some as natural. Some consider fidelity and marriage mere constructs, so moving and having sex with partner to partner is “normal.” But we know how foolhardy it is because of its effects (too many children to feed that leads to a parent abandoning them). Fidelity is still seen as a more acceptable state by many religions and cultures, yet one might consider it something “unnatural.”

Now as for the unnatural things that are not wrong, I’d cite flying. Humans flying, even in planes is not natural. We are ground-based creatures by nature. But it is not wrong to fly. Hence, something unnatural is not necessarily wrong. Based on this, if someone has a same-sex relationship, it may be unnatural, but that’s their thing.

This is based on the naturalist argument for determining right and wrong. However, in my philosophy classes, I learned that there are several bases for right and wrong. I will just mention the teleological argument (that there’s a higher order that determines right and wrong, like God or karma), and the consequential argument (we do/not do it because of its effect) for now since I’m getting them from the back of my head. Let me use a murder as a topic for demonstrating my understaing of these perspectives. Under the naturalist argument, when you kill, you snuffed out a life that had naturally a right to live. Under the consequentialist argument, the snuffing out of the life could have dire consequences. Let’s say a breadwinner was killed; so the family goes hungry. Under the teleological argument, by killing you try to place yourself higher over others, being something that has power over the life and death of others, but you have no right to. You are breaking the higher order of the universe with your action.

I do not claim to be a philosophy expert, and I defer to Add’s excellent article as better on this topic, so please bear with me as I try to briefly explain from other perspectives the gay situation. Under the teleological argument, while romantic feelings are mainly biological in origin, people would say love can and should be higher than that. So there is another principle bringing people together in their partner union, which does not need sex or biology. Under the consequentialist argument, some people would say heterosexual couples can create children that they cannot feed. Then if they give up one of their children, who might be among the possible adopters? A gay couple.

When it comes to determining whether something is right or wrong, one perspective, such as the natural, is insufficient. All of the above play into determining right and wrong. All of them even overlap on the same topic. Depending on one perspective gives an incomplete picture and the resulting conclusions can be short-sighted.

Cindy Hazan on Love

So let’s discuss why love can be a choice. Sometime in the early 2000’s I encountered a finding by a psychologist named Cindy Hazan. She theorized from studies that the human sexual attraction, namely “love,” has a half-life of around three years because the “Love chemicals” don’t last forever. After three years, with the chemicals waned, the partners will seek to separate and then look for other partners to rekindle their love chemicals. This, theorizes Hazan, is the reason for many celebrities’ and others’ relationships lasting for around that average period of three years. Thus, if we follow only nature, fidelity is likely hard to keep.

see-what-10-old-couples-looked-like-when-they-were-young

Based on this, I tend to agree more with the idea that falling in love is a choice, at least in part. This is how I would explain fidelity. Why do people mostly stay together despite “love chemicals” waning. It’s because their relationship is based on more than just something “natural.” Human beings are endowed with free will and free choice, and these factor into their actions. So when people stay in love, it’s because they choose to do it. It is a conscious effort to appreciate the person for what they are and keeping in love with them. Letting pure nature do it tends to lead to a failure of fidelity. Well, nature does act as a starting point, but the mind kicks in from there. Love is as much an intellectual process as an emotional one.

Popular culture today likes to sell the purely natural concept of love because it can get people to move without thinking. So going all in and making out without thinking about it are accepted. “Follow your feelings, thinking is for dweebs” is a dangerous attitude popularized by movie and TV fiction. It opposes the necessary balance between nature and conscious thought. Some advise making the right choice of partner, or making sure you are willing to live with your choice, to prevent unnecessary breakups. Of course, people make mistakes, but the reason to consider fidelity in a relationship normal is because it implies stability.

Of course, this part digressed quite a bit. But I wanted to show that humans have something other than nature that is a basis of how they handle relationships. Perhaps this thing, sentience (or intelligence and will as Add describes in his article), is part of nature, but it is clearly something very distinct from the simple instinct of animals. Our sentience in fact allows us to go against nature when we want to. But it also allows us to make reasoned and sane approaches to topics. The thing is, how do we use it to discuss a topic such as homosexuality with a more reasoned approach?

On Genes

Proponents support the natural explanation by claiming that there is a gay gene. If someone inherits the gene, they have the tendency to be gay. As I mentioned above, when someone enjoys something, chemicals in the brain work to give them the feeling of happiness, such as when they are in love. We don’t know yet whether the supposed gay gene or any other biological phenomenon stimulates the pleasure chemicals in the brain, but it is certain that brain chemicals constitute a large part of it. I would still consider it an unsettled debate.

gay_genes_rect-620x412

The thing with this claim of “genes” is that it gets abused for certain things. For example, some people may claim that their special talents are as a reason for special treatment. For example, I heard someone who supports Filipino singers that there is such a thing as Vocal DNA – that some people can be naturally good singers without training, and that vocal chords can’t be trained. I called baloney on it. Even professional singers say good voices are trained. It’s for this reason I wrote the “Natural Talents and Pinoy Pride” article, where I reasoned that there is no such thing as a special tendency for Filipinos to have special talents above people from other countries. It is a horseload of baloney that exists only to sell things like talent shows and associated products. Claiming natural “talents” or traits is often used to rationalize being entitled to privilege, and it thus becomes a basis for inequality.

Perhaps these people see talents as similar to beauty. Fellow blogger Gogs had this to say: Some people just are born with better looks than others so where is the competition there? No, talents are not like looks, the consensus of many people studying the issue is that they are more nurtured and developed. Wanting to receive accolades for “natural talent” reflects the misguided wish to be rich and famous without needing to work – a moocher (wait a minute, that’s how our president won in 2010!).

Genetic tendencies for me tend to be more physical, such as appearance attributes and physical defects. There are even congenital disorders that are passed on. I am not sure that it can influence behavior. My pastor told me about studies that showed adopted children continued aggressive behavior from their biological parents even if their adoptive parents raised them lovingly. However, I remain skeptical, since behavior can be modified by our own wills, being able to overcome their brain chemicals. Well, brain chemicals at times do overcome, such as in specific mental illnesses. Sometimes, we need medication to address it. But we have willpower for a reason.

What to Do?

Back to issues with LGBTs. So what is wrong, what’s all the big fuss about homosexuality? It’s because it has been heavily politicized. Political sides have polarized to the point that if you’re pro-gay, you’re this side, and if you’re anti-gay, you’re on the other side; no in-betweens. They want you to pick a side. They may demonize anyone taking a middle view as a member of the other. They have something to gain from portraying the other as an enemy. And these sides have access to making their whims and wishes into policy. That’s scary.

phpThumb_generated_thumbnail

Of course, politics is always colored by deceit, similar to the conspiracy theories I wrote about. There is hate-mongering that is based on stereotypes, similar to how Muslims are portrayed. There is also that lingering theory that the LGBT movement is a cover for pedophilia legalization movements. However, that remains theory and it’s more likely that such a movement is an infiltrator one than a major part of LGBT.

Of course, fellow blogger Hector Gamboa is right about the issue being all about tolerance. What gays are after with things like legalization of marriage is simply being tolerated. That means freedom from being attacked. They don’t want someone breaking down the door and forcefully tearing them apart – who does anyway? Gay people have indeed been among the subjects of violence and hate crimes. If someone is gay, the prevailing culture among right-wingers is that they should be jailed or killed. There is also likely a movement to recriminalize homosexuality and force the gays to undergo “re-orientation.” Is this the right thing to do?

Thus, it all boils down to action. So the question is still one I have raised in the Facebook group. What’s your reaction if you, someone straight and doesn’t like gays, meet a gay person? Would you bring out a shotgun? What would you do if you were Joseph Pemberton and were fooled by a ladyboy? Are you going to campaign against gay marriage or for recriminalizing homosexual relations? What would you do if you learned your son was in a gay relationship? Would you break down the door and forcefully drag him out? And for the other side, if someone indeed proclaims gays should be shot, how would you react? If there was legislation already on the way to recriminalize gays, what would you do? When someone does proclaim there are anti-gay, will you resort to bullying and loud shaming tactics? And more. Whatever we talk about, how we act on this is what defines us.

I’m pretty sure that at the end, everyone wants comfort, peace and security in life. The thing is, there will always be people who will be different from you or who will disagree with you. So how would you handle them?

print

About ChinoF

I stick with this blog because I believe, as my cohorts do, that many things Filipino embrace as part of their culture are pulling them down. And I blog freely to show that in a truly decent society, with true freedom of speech, even nobodies have a voice.

11 Comments on “Some Thoughts Spurred by the LGBT Discussion”

  1. In Theocratic countries, like Iran; they hang gays and homosexuals.

    I don’t agree, it is in the Gay DNA. There are straight couples, producing gay children. There are bisexual couples , producing straight children.

    Love between couples, may wan after three (3) years. However, it is for the couples to rekindle their love in their marriage. Kindness, and thoughtfulness to your wife or husband can make a huge difference. I believe in fidelity in marriage. We have to take care of our children; and not go on finding other love.

    If we go on finding love…our search will go to nowhere. Going from one partner, to another, until you hit someone with HIV disease.

    The Dopamine in the brain produces pleasure. The brain is still a complex machine. Brain chemicals are many…we still don’t know them all.

    These chemicals must be in the right place in the brain, and in the right amount. Otherwise, a person will have defects in his/her personality. We are made in a complex way. This is the reason, I believe in God, our creator. Even, if I work in the field of Science and Technology.

    We still don’t know the causes of homosexuality. It is a very complex subject to discuss.

    We can tolerate homosexuals, however, they should not recruit people, to become homosexuals. Marriage between a man and a woman, enable our human species to reproduce. We need to reproduce; otherwise; our human species will become extinct.

    What your religion say, about homosexuality, is your business. I may, or may not agree with them.

    1. what?!? Gays recruit people to become homosexuals? lol, that is such a load of crap that u probably pull from your ass! I had a group of friends who were and I used to hang out with them
      often. Not one of them recruited me to become gay nor I kmow of any person being recruited by gays to become gay. That statement is just so absurd. Being gay is not an ideoly like christian, muslim, jewish, etc. that you can recruit into believing your ideology. If a person is not gay or have any gay tendencies, you cannot possibly recruit him/her to be gay. I am going by pure logic here. I love vagina’s so much even when I was a teen and there is not anybody who can recruit me to suck a cock, That is thr biggest bullshit I have heard so far. It’s like a gay person saying that men have gay tendencies. Your assesment is no better than that.

      I sugest that before you say something you ought to think about it really hard because what you said is an insult to clear thinking people. Only idiots would buy your phletora of bullshit.

      Sure, you can claim that it is just your opinion hence I can not dismiss you are mistaken or I can’t call u an idiot for your opinion. However, if someone says the pope is the anti-christ and catholics are mindless sheeps who believe in a talking snake and are enablers of the anti-christ, I will also say that that person is an idiot because he can not prove hid claim. Oh, trust me, I heard many iglesia ni cristo who says the pope is the anti-christ based on whst tbey hear from others.

      1. I said: “they should not recruit people to become homosexuals…” there is nothing wrong with that: “influencing” young people to become homosexuals is possible.

        There were cases of Roman Catholic Priest homosexuals, abusing children. And these children, became homosexuals.

        1. “Recruiting” young people? I doubt that’s how it’s really happening. Perhaps it’s more like a few gays have crushes on some straight gays, still hoping these would go for them. But they’re not “recruiting.” As for the priests, they not influencing, they’re just trying to satisfy their urges. And from what I know, many victims of pedo abusers don’t become gay themselves.

          By the way, shouldn’t even relations between heterosexual adults and kids (old guy-little girl or little guy-old girl) also be considered pedophilia? I’m sure there are some who would have the double standard opinion that it isn’t.

  2. I partially agree with the author.Just because you are against gay marriage does not automatically means you are a bigot or anti-gay. I am for same–sex marriage ONLY when it comes to civil wedding, If a gay couple wants to get married in a church whose doctrine prohibits same sex marriage then that is shoving their beliefs on the church. However, If the church prohibits gay martiage in civil weddings then that’s shoving their beliefs as well.

    Gays just want to have the same rights as hetero couples, and the church has no business in people’s liberty and in pursuit of an individual’s happiness as long as you do not committ a crime.

    It does not matter if there is a gay DNA or if it a choice. What matters is it is not anybody’s business if a person is gay or even if they view it as immoral, or a sin. There sre sins in the bible that christiand do every day such as eating pork and shell fish, not keeping the sabbath holy. having tatoos in thei bodies, having Sex before martiage, lusting after a person, binge drinking, gossiping, idolatry, wearing blings, wearimg sexy outfits, Lying, philandeering and adultery which many filipino’s are guilty of, etc.

    It is perfectly fine if you publicly announce your religious beliefs but to demean people basing it on a bible verse twisting it like a crazy fundamentalist fuckwit is just fucked up. I have known many christians who are hypocritical dumbshits – both straight and gays

    The fact is Manny was bashed bec he said that gays are worse than animals, not his stance on same-sex marriage.

    There are gay militants and there are crazy ass fuck christian fundamentalists. The answer is moderation. Many people just take the words of what people say as they are not capable of critical thinking.

    1. Hey Ren Car! Because I care for you, man, I would want you to have good arguments. We do not share the same views I know you have your reasoned opinions (and personal style) and I have mine. Just a minor point: Do not assert the idea that it is a sin for Christians to eat pork or shellfish and not keeping the sabbath holy, tatoos and blings. These are the sort of arguments I see online which are misinformed about the bible and Christian doctrine, look it up. I will reserve my comments on same sex marriage and why I don’t think it is a constitutional rights issue in another comment to this article when I have the time. Good day! 🙂

    2. Question, I have seen businesses here in the Philippines that have a sign outside the building that says no Pinoys allowed. Ren, I loved what you said in your argument. I wonder why there is no outcry over this business like over this same sex marriage debate. I agree with everything except, I think you kinda of got two religions mixed into one when taking about Christians. I do understand you point about there needs to be a meeting point in the middle where no one forces his or her religion down anyone else’s throat. It is equal rights for everyone which includes those who agree or do not agree with same sex marriage.

  3. One question I have never seen raised on this topic.The LGBT community wishes to see their relationships placed on an equal legal footing with traditional relationships{marriage}. What happens when a LGBT couple wish to end their relationship? Divorce?

    An even bigger can of worms.

  4. The thing is, there will always be people who will be different from you or who will disagree with you. So how would you handle them?

    – Depends on the existing relationship with that “people”. If that’s my son/daughter, I would raise mostly consequential arguments in order to steer them to what I believe is right.

    If they aren’t really someone who I really care about, or has something to do with my life, I just say what I say in a positive/non-hurting manner and leave it to them how they’d take it and react. I like the idea that most of the experiences in life is actually caused by how we react to it.

    Thanks ChinoF for the nice article.

    1. Thank you for reading as well. I’m glad you focused on the last question. That for me is the crux of the matter. How we handle adversity often defines us, and that adversity includes disagreement from others.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.