How do you feel about homosexuality?

This is in IMHO for a reason. I’m curious how y’all feel about homosexuality. I don’t want debate, I don’t want rudness, of course, I just want to know where people stand on it.

I’ll start. I’m gayish. I dig chicks more than I dig guys, I have a girlfriend, I’m a little bit butch and get a kick out of calling myself a dyke because it’s a sexy word. I’m somewhat uncomfortable about labeling myself, but for all practical purposes, I’m a lesbian. Obviously, I think being gay is groovy and fine.

On issues, I’m relatively political, although not vocally so. My current excuse for this is the fact that I’m in school and living with my parents, and that I’m not comfortable being active in this enviroment. I figure I can be out in college and later, with people I haven’t known all my life. (I do feel somewhat guilty about this, but it’s hard to change). I think a key issue currently is marriage between gays. It needs to happen. No one can pretend we have equal rights until we are able to have the state recognize our relationships when it comes to taxes and medical rights. etc. I think that we’ve come a long way when it comes to acceptance of gays. I know most of the people in my town are more or less ok with it. However, I know that things are still harder in smaller towns, and in the midwest. My girlfriend lives in Ohio, and she honestly feels a little bit afraid about being outed there, because the majority of her friends are vocally against gays.

One thing that I wish we could change about discussion of homosexuallity is the whole ‘is it a choice or are we born with it’ thing. The point we should be stressing is that it shouldn’t matter if we choose to love members of the same sex, or if it just happens. The important thing is that we do, that a good deal of people do, and that we deserve respect and recognition of our feelings.

I don’t think it’s possible now, but I hope in the future that bisexuality can be discussed. I think a lot of people are uncomfortable with the idea that people can be attracted to both sexes, and I don’t think it should have to be that way. Sexuality varies from person to person, and I think it’s entirely legitimate and understandable that people could like both men and women. But in todays society, people who approach things with an open mind, liking both genders, are generally antagonized as experimenting, fickle, and slightly slutty. Some people don’t think a bisexual person can commit. All this stuff is not true, and I hope that in the future, bisexuality will be accepted.

So… what do you guys think?

It’s all just closed-minded people still caught back with the Puritans.

I’m fine with it. My parents, though, would never talk to you again, think it “sinful”, etc. - and that’s how they brought me up. But in the years since I moved away from home, I’ve found that I really don’t care what other people do. I am not gay, nor do I have any desire to “experiment”, but why should I impose my preferences on anybody else? It’s really none of my business.

About marriage - I wish they’d just get around to recognizing that as far as the state should be concerned, marriage is a business contract between two individuals, nothing more. (I could go on about how, since it’s a contract, pre-nuptial agreements should be REQUIRED, but I won’t.) As such, it should not be limited to heterosexual couples. But marriage is so rooted in religion in the minds of the legislators that it will take A LONG time to change this.

The darn Puritans and the rest of the religious right have screwed this country up for so long, its going to be difficult to change things. Note - If anybody wants to be religious, hey, great, have a ball. But don’t try to impose it or the laws it creates on me or society in general.

Interesting thread, foxfirgrrl, I think I’ll probably learn from it. I’m a heterosexual guy with only a couple of pennies to toss in. I’m in my late 30s, so my formative years were at a time when most things non-hetero were considered pretty fringe. Or worse. Plus, my parents were both pretty bigoted, bless them. Times change, though, and I grew to have a little broader view.

Today, the knowledge that a person has a different sexual preference than me doesn’t bother me. I thought of sharing an anectdote at this point, but it would just sound too cliche (“Hell, some of my best friends…”). :wink:

I guess that what I wanted to say is that, while I’d be repulsed at the thought of homosexuality as applied to me, knowing someone else’s preference ain’t mine doesn’t really affect my impression of them at all. Put another way, if a man were to ask me for a date, I’d decline without taking offense. However, I’d rather not have a homosexual friend of either gender share the details of their sex life. No wait, that doesn’t work, because I wouldn’t be interested in a hetero friend’s bedroom stories, either. Maybe we could just leave it at a matter of degree.

As far as same-sex marriage goes, I can’t see why states shouldn’t give them formal recognition. I believe WI provides health-care benefits in this situation, and probably other states I’m unaware of. You wouldn’t have to look hard to find plenty of opposite-sex marriages that have endured a heckuva lot shorter periods than many same-sex couples. More practical (secular) reasons aside, many will oppose this on the basis of their particular faith. I imagine you’ll hear from some of them shortly.

It affects me about like long fingers affect me–it’s not that big of a personal issue. Admittedly, I do use a lot of the tired old jokes with the gay people I know (someone on a ship once asked me how I was enjoying cruising–dead silence and bemused stare on my part), but that’s probably more because I’m not funny, not because it’s a political issue.

Late 30’s, generally conservative, military veteran, Christian (sans attitude), raised in rural / small town enviroments (Colorado, Maryland):

I’m entirely comfortable around lesbians, and gays are fine, although I’m a little less comfortable around gay men until I get to know them as people. I guess it works out like this:

Lesbians: Sure, whatever; It’s cool.
Gays (far away): Sure, whatever; It’s cool.
Gays (near my personal space): Um… OK, I guess…
Gays (that I know, any distance): Sure, whatever; It’s cool.

Call the uneasiness around unfamiliar gay men “residual homophobia”. I’m entirely aware that it’s irrational, and I make a strong effort to keep that little unpleasantness in it’s place. Once I know a person, I have many better reasons to either like (or dislike) them than what (or who) they do for kicks.

Did that make sense to anyone?

I try to view these things from a shallow perspective of self-interest.

When I was dating, if I had thought to have a stance, I’d have been against Lesbians. Each Lesbian not only narrowed the pool of potential mates for me, but actually competed with me for those remaining in the pool!

Each gay male meant one less competitor for the available females, so that seemed like a good thing. I would guess these tend to cancel each other out, so in hindsight, if I’d thought to have a stance it would have been neutral over all, anti-lesbian, and pro-gay male.

Now that I’m married and living in rural Pensylvania it hardly matters. There’s not much open gayness around. My main interest now isn’t potential mates, but potential babysitters, and their sexual preference doesn’t seem germaine to the issue. So, consider me completely neutral.

All I have to say is that I live in the same city with Fred Phelps. I was born here and grew up here, and then got the hell outta Dodge for college. After stints in Atlanta, Houston, San Francisco and Philly, I’m back.

And, frankly, kind of shocked that people (even ones who might not be entirely sane) still think the way they do about homosexuality. It’s one thing if you’re not thrilled about it, but are able to “live and let live”… but quite another if you’ve got your damn children standing in the street with signs that say “God Hates Fags.” :mad:

Now, granted, my college experience was a little conservative (more so than people often think would be the case at a Black womens’ college), but since then I’ve pretty much travelled in circles where a question such as yours, foxfiregrrrl, would be akin to saying, “I use Colgate toothpaste now, instead of Crest… how do you feel about that?”

Then I came back to Topeka, and was absolutely livid–for awhile–at the whole Fred Phelps Phenomenon. The one good thing about it, however, is that people around here who are also opposed to homosexuality (often for religious reasons… it’s Kansas, you know) tend to keep their flaps shut about it because they don’t want to be associated with Fred’s crazy ass.

The bad thing, however, is that to most people around here, he’s like wallpaper or something… you don’t really pay much attention to him. We just sort of write him off as a loon. And maybe that sort of apathy is problematic, because if we can’t even successfully rally against HIS lame ass, is there any hope of legalizing gay marriages, a cause which I fully support, because sometimes just jumpin’ the broom is not enough.

As for me personally, well…

One of my favorite scenes in the movie Hair (besides the one in the park, where the woman is singing “Easy to be Hard” and that amazingly adorable kid is standing there crying) is the scene where they’re all put in jail, and the one guy gets sent to a psychiatrist because he refuses to cut his hair. The psychiatrist asks if he’s homosexual, and he says, “Well, I wouldn’t kick Mick Jagger outta my bed, but I’m not a homosexual…”

That’s sort of where I stand.

I probably wouldn’t kick Lauryn Hill out of MY bed (hubba hubba)… but I’d much prefer Tupac (save for the fact that he’s dead) or Greg Allman… :smiley:

I don’t feel any different about homosexual people (of either gender) than I do about heterosexual people.

Aren’t we all human after all?

How do I feel about homosexuality?

Like this - makes groping motions

:smiley: C’mon, somebody had to say it.

But seriously, it don’t make no nevermind to me.

Hey, what you do on your own time is your business. Knock yourself out. If I’m not one of the participants in the goings-on then it’s not my concern, now is it? I’m a straight white male in his early 30’s, and my opinion is sort of in league with cornflakes’. It’s not that big of an issue. I’m not going to use the “some of my best friends. . .” line either, although my fraternity big brother is gay (and a good friend) and many of the folks I’ve gotten to know through a local church I’ve been attending lately are gay or bi.

It’s not my bag, that’s all. And it doesn’t have to be. As far as I’m concerned, what you prefer in the way of intimate companionship is none of my business. Don’t hassle me about liking well-upholstered brunettes and I won’t hassle you about your taste in partners, m’kay?

As for PDA’s: they bother me no matter who is doing it. I’m just as likely to throw a dollar bill and holler “Get a room!” to two guys or two women playing tonsil hockey on a street corner as I am to a M/F couple.

For most of a sheltered life, homosexuals were nothing more than the punchline of a joke. When I was in high-school, I learned my brother was gay. Shaken a little, I was nonetheless “okay” with it, though in retrospect, I still didn’t realize what it meant and what it didn’t mean. A few years later on summer vacation from art-school college, I was looking for an art-related job in my hometown area with no luck. Coincidently, my brother’s friend was looking with an art background for a business he ran. The situation: I spend the summer in Seattle, renting a room from my brother’s friend (so I could live cheaply and actually make money instead of just breaking even). I (a straight guy) would be living with “a bunch of gay guys” and that would pretty much comprise my social group.

So I went ahead and did it and it would become one of the most enriching experiences of my life. No, I didn’t “turn gay” as my father worried when I mentioned that to him. What I did realize is that we’re all the same. We all hurt, we all love, we all have stress, we all feel embarrassed, we all pay bills, et cetera. A difference in sexual persuasion became little more of a difference than a difference of eye color. This line of thinking is exactly in line with Dr. Martin Luther King’s dream of judging a person by the content of their character, rather than by the color of their skin. I am working to extend the same outlook beyond skin color to sexual persuasion, political affilliations, religious affiliations and all the other ways we deliberately segregate ourselves.

Unfortunately, it’s difficult for me. I have found that the most vocal factions of any group focus on the differences.

Case in point, I was at San Diego Pride Parade last year and found myself in a mix of emotions. When the families of homosexuals were walking down the street professing an unconditional love and acceptance of their family member, it literally put a lump in my throat and a tear to my eye. However when the disco leather ass-less chaps float (a generalization of several floats) came along, it seemed to say to me, no, shout to me, “LOOK AT MY LIFESTYLE! MY LIFE’S A PARTY! YOUR VALUES DON’T APPLY TO ME! AND YOU HAVE TO DEAL WITH IT!”

All of which may be true, but I knew that it was this type of float that would get the most attention on the news, and do more damage than good for a quicker acceptance of gays.

Personally, I believe in being true to who I am without apology. But in coexisting with other people, all of whom are different than me on some level, I think it is to everyone’s benefit when I lead off by finding a common ground.

I thought about this, and I realized that I do it too. Not for gay men, but for straight men. Not on principle, or anything, it’s just the fact that maybe they’re interested in me or hitting on me, and I’m not interested in them at all. I imagine it’s pretty common feeling uncomfortable with people who could be interested in you, when you wouldn’t be. And I’m not sure how bad a reaction that is. It’s certainly something to think about.

I’m ambivalent about it but if the first words out of their mouth are “I’m gay! I’m gay!” and act like Liberace caught fire in an Indian restaurant then I judge them has having nothing more interesting about them than their choice of sexual partners and don’t bother.


My opinion on homosexuality is that it’s a lovely way to spend the afternoon.


“The Bible contains only 6 admonishments to homosexuals and 362 to

Therefore, they are lucky.

I’m in a weird spot because I’m just now getting my spiritual life to the tolerant place the rest of my life has already been. I don’t have any personal qualms about it, but I’m having a tough time resolving this with my religion.

I’ve only been back into my faith life for about 10 years, and before that I had no problems with people’s sexual preferences.

I agree that we have to get past the “choice or birth” argument for sure. I also think that if 10% is really too high an estimate of the gay population, then everyone including gay activists should own up to it. I understand that the current thinking is it’s more like 1%.

The whole transgendered and intersex issue is a bit much to think about. Understanding that some individuals are born with sexually indeterminate genitals (I’m mangling the terminology here) is going to be a huge challenge to the average person.

I’m an odd kind of person, so I’ve been called “faggot” even though I’m straight. I don’t think that gives me much insight. I get uncomfortable if I think a man is cruising me. Thank God this doesn’t happen often.

And I would be bummed if I had a crush on a woman and then found out she was gay. I knew a bi- mostly gay woman in college that I really wanted. It was tough to think I’d never be what she wanted.

Actually, I have some questions of my own there - minor hijack - I should probably start my own thread about this. I identify as bisexual, but it’s not so much that I’m attracted to both men and women (though that is part and parcel of being attracted to humans) it seems more like I am attracted to a type of personality, regardless of the gender of body it inhabits. (Although I find both men and women to be quite beautiful in a purely physical manner.)

Is that ‘normal’?

As for the rest of the OP, I think people making people happy are great :slight_smile: I agree with the ‘nature vs. choice’ argument, does the reason really matter? If you can accept homosexuals, does the reason for their homosexuality matter? Or does it only matter if you are trying to ‘cure’ them? Would it help us understand homosexuality?

I have no answers, only questions :slight_smile:

I don’t know, but I think it makes a lot of sense. :slight_smile: It brings up something that I think about a lot. A lot of people think of homosexual feelings being about physical attraction, and I know that, at least for me, there’s a lot about the internal characteristics that women that make me like them, too. A lot of time, attraction to personality is downplayed when people talk about sexualities, and I think it’s unfortunant.

I’m straight, but figure that homosexuality is only the business of the people involved. Not for me, but if that’s what you like, fine.

This is due to a friend of mine. I knew Mark in high school. He was stereotypically “gay” – the “gay” accent, etc. I never really saw him much, but I sort of looked down on him because of it.

After I graduated in 1970, I started dating someone. She was part of a small clique of outcasts, one of whom was Mark. So, for the first time, I got to know him. Also, Mark was dating another one of the girls in the group. This taught me lesson number 1:

  1. Never judge a person by his appearance.

What turned out was that Mark was trying to drum up enthusiasm for the opposite sex, and it failed. Later that summer, I learned that he was, indeed, gay. That taught me lesson number 2:

  1. It doesn’t matter.

By that point, Mark was a friend of mine and I saw no reason to change that. I stopped being bothered by people being gay.

As a sad side note, I found out in the early 80s, that Mark had died of AIDS. :frowning:

Mark’s story, BTW, has been sensationalized and written up in a book, Trying Hard to Hear You by Sandra Scoppettone. One of the characters in the book is based on me during that summer (and most of the others are based on other people I knew back then). Evidently, the book is something of a classic in the “young gay coming of age” genre.