- MSNBC: Frozen world of Quaoar found beyond Pluto — This is a fascinating discovery.
- Boundless.org: Score one for politics
- First, they make observations about the world; they inquire, measure and record, all in an appallingly objective manner. Then they have the audacity to construct theories in order to explain the facts. As if this weren’t bad enough, they then report their findings to the rest of us, heedless of any political consequences.
Take Dr. Robert Spitzer. Dr. Spitzer is a Professor of Psychiatry at Columbia University who has been conducting psychiatric research for more than 30 years. One of his major fields of interest is human sexuality; in particular, sexual orientation. Over the years, he has conducted numerous studies to explore how orientation is determined, the degree of its fluidity and various relationships between heredity and the environment in determining sexual feelings.
Naturally, one group Spitzer became curious to investigate were “ex-gays,” people who had previously identified themselves as homosexual, but now claimed to have become heterosexual. Who better, he thought, to provide evidence for the fixity or fluidity of sexual orientation than those who claim to have changed?
Accordingly, Spitzer conducted more than 200 telephone interviews with just such people. Each 45-minute interview contained 60 questions about the subjects’ feelings and behavior before and after their efforts to change orientation. They discussed their motives for change; their strategies, which included counseling, support groups, prayer and mentoring; and their current relationships with the opposite sex.
Spitzer found that approximately 66 percent of the men and 44 percent of the women he interviewed had achieved, over the course of many years, a level of “good heterosexual functioning.” His conclusion, in his own words: “Some highly motivated people can change from gay to straight.” . . .
I find two things interesting about this story.
First, this study showed that a sizeable number of people (a majority of men and a minority of women surveyed) who identified themselves as former homosexuals, did in fact achieve a “good heterosexual functioning.” This would seem to fly in the face of what many homosexual advocates would express.
Secondly, at the same time a sizeable number of the pool (in this case, a minority of the men, but a majority of the women) who identified themselves as former homosexuals, do not (in the eyes of this study) achieve a “good level of heterosexual functioning.” This would seem to contradict what many in the homosexual conversion ministries would express.
Finally, it seems strange to me that both sides of this debate didn’t simply look at the study itself instead of jumping to conclusions. Certainly the study would seem to indicate that some folks with a homosexual orientation can change to a heterosexual orientation, while others who desire to make this change are unable to. This to me would seem to not be a victory for either camp, and I personally think the hype from both perspectives are excessive. The author of this article was right to call the PC folks for their stupid fear of scientific inquiry, but it also goes both ways. I don’t think this study should be trotted out by the ex-gay ministries as “proof” that their ministries are 100% successful. I’m glad those ministries are out there, but also know that many homosexual people who sincerely do not want to be gay and want to change, are turned off by the lack of humility in some of these ministries. (I’ll have to share a story at a later time of an encounter that I had with a struggling gay man when I was a student at SWOSU.) It’s great that some do change, but those ministries should not make it sound like that everyone will have an easy time of it, because many will not.
Also, before I get hate mail on this… I don’t mean to sound like any of this is an easy answer.
Sexuality is a mystery to me. I, myself believe in the Bible and its expression of the ideal of human sexuality, but know I do not live up to it often, and really most… no, I should say all of us do not live up to it. Why sex is so hard to do right, I don’t know. It is frustrating to me that God created in us such an uncontrollable force, but He did. I get mad when folks shortchange the ideal by denying that there is an standard that men and women should strive for, but I also get mad when people put down those who struggle. The truth is that we all struggle with sin. Homosexuality is not a struggle I deal with, but I have other struggles. We all do. Anyone who says otherwise is a liar.