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Diversity, Homosexuality and Education

We have been led to believe that homosexuality, like race, is an innate quality that cannot change. And most white Americans, feeling a bit guilty about the historic treatment of African Americans, are easily convinced that they must label their objections as “bias” and unconditionally accept gays and lesbians, as well as everything that they do.

A little more subtle aspect to this phenomenon is the implicit assumption that desires which come from within a person are both good and irresistible. It is considered bigotry to discuss adverse outcomes of homosexual behavior and if any are irrefutable, they are attributed to an adverse social climate and prejudice.

But every now and then, something happens that blows away the fog and lets us see the illogic of these assumptions. The Catholic priest scandals and behavior of certain public figures seem to elicit a consensus that there are some sexual behaviors that are not acceptable. Further, almost any honest adult who is not sociopathic will admit that he has had sexual impulses that he knows should never be acted out. That being true, the principle is established that everybody needs to control himself at least some of the time. Putting these statements together, it would seem obvious that there may be some people, if their sexual desires always fall in the unacceptable category, may need to control themselves all of the time. Saying, “This is the way I am. I can’t help it,” does not cut it if the orientation is towards rape.

As it turns out, the whole fabric of our cultural delusion begins to unravel right from the beginning. Although there may be an “at risk” personality for male homosexuality, sensitive, intelligent, creative and empathetic, it is experience that determines the outcome. Lack of a father figure or a poor emotional fit with father can cause a longing for male affection which later may be sexualized. This also makes a boy vulnerable to homosexual seduction by adults who may rationalize this as “doing a gay boy a favor.” Yet the experience, even if associated with shame, mixes in some pleasure, and any sexual activity, especially for males, becomes extremely habit forming. A history of molestation as a child is very common among male homosexuals. (For lesbians, it is often childhood sexual abuse by men which leads to distrust and anger towards men and a reactive attachment to women.)

And self identification as “gay” is a major factor in determining future behavior. This should not be surprising. What we think of ourselves strongly influences what we do and how we interpret it. A student who thinks, “I am stupid,” will give up when something looks hard, but one who has been told, “You are smart,” is much more likely to persist and succeed. A child or adolescent’s belief can tip a borderline situation towards experimentation, which establishes strong patterns of behavior.

And it is not bigotry; on the contrary it is compassion, to point out the adverse physical and mental health outcomes of homosexual activity, because acting on the impulses is dangerous. The AIDS epidemic began in the gay community because of rampant promiscuity. Even in long term “committed relationships” there is invariably “openness” to other sexual contacts. Besides the risks of sexually transmitted diseases, the stress of transient or broken relationships is severe, even though men may not attach as strongly as women to sexual partners. The lifespan of male homosexuals, even those who do not contract AIDS, is significantly shorter and the rates of psychological disorders (including depression and suicide) and chemical addiction are high. Violence against gays is not primarily by “gay bashers” but gay on gay, related to men’s general tendency to respond to stress with violence. This is not surprising given the jealousy and anger that accompanies impermanent relationships.

Further, it is not prejudice that discovers higher rates of molestation among homosexuals. Defenders of homosexuality state that most child sexual abuse is of girls by men and that is true. But because homosexuals are only about 2 – 4% of the population, the proportionate rate of sexual abuse of children by homosexuals is 10 to 20 times higher than for heterosexuals. In multiple studies, even those by gay advocates, about 25% of adult male homosexuals admit that while they were over the age of 21 they had sex with boys under 16. And the implications of this are fully realized when we see that if the first sexual experience of a boy or adolescent is homosexual, there is an over 60% chance that he will go on to identify himself as gay and live a gay lifestyle.

Homosexuality is not just another human variation but a personal and societal tragedy. Our national epidemic of fatherlessness or “present but preoccupied” fathers, increases the risk for many boys. (Fatherless girls long for a man to say, “I love you,” and become easy prey to young men who have become irresponsible predators.) Because homosexuality is presented as normal and experimentation almost expected, more will get themselves started on a slippery slide they cannot escape.

Thus if the public schools’ goal is to promote tolerance of alternative lifestyles, they are at least doing a great disservice and perhaps even guilty of educational malpractice, with liability worthy of legal action.

Yet those caught up in this web are valuable human beings. Many of the factors that brought them to this point are beyond their control and the safeguards that society should have provided were not there. They cannot choose how they feel, but if they are indeed free moral agents, they do have a choice on how they behave. Will we insist that the pedophile resist his impulses or will his “rights” trump those of the children? And if homosexuality is OK, then it should not matter that many of his victims become gay! Yet very few people will carry their vague notions of fairness to the ultimate conclusion and are not likely to sign their names to a call for complete sexual anarchy.

If there is no God and we are all products of chance, with no ultimate purpose and probably no real choices, then it does not matter. And it is hard to convince anyone without hope to give up any pleasure when the alternative is complete despair.

Yet the Christian message is that there is hope. First of all, God made us and loves us. But we have all rebelled against His rule and messed up not only our own lives but the whole world. Evil falls not only on the guilty but even on those who do not seem to deserve it. God did not make people gay. The fallen world causes some babies to have cancer and some elderly to have Alzheimer’s and some people to have same sex attractions. God does not hate gays. He loves all people, but He loves us too much to leave us to our own devices.

The gospel message is the only thing that can give hope to homosexuals. Jesus Christ took our punishment on the cross and if we surrender our lives to Him, we can have forgiveness. He gives us both the motivation and the power to turn away from slavish obedience to our sinful impulses and practice submission to His will. It is not instant and it is not easy. Our hearts are still deceitful and wicked. Any one who says, “Listen to your inner self, it will never lead you astray,” is living in a fantasy world.

But for the homosexual, God provides hope! For some that is a partial or complete change of orientation. But even if God asks a person to continue the struggle, fortified with His power, it will always be for a higher good. Joe Hallett was one of the most deeply spiritual men I ever knew. God preserved his life with AIDS for ten years at a time when the usual lifespan was two. His transparency about his struggles allowed him to point many others to the only hope for any of us, whatever our issues may be, namely complete surrender to the Lordship of Jesus Christ, Who loves us more than we can ever understand, and has a plan for us with a hope and a future.

Ross S. Olson MD American College of Pediatricians


National Association for Research and Therapy of Homosexuality.

Also visit the website of Family Research Institute.

Look for the book Homosexuality and the Politics of Truth by Psychiatrist Jeffrey Satinover, available on

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