Jewish tradition teaches there is some Divine manipulation in history for the purpose of timing events on a seasonal basis. For example, around Passover time, there will be stories in the news of individual and communal liberation or, conversely, about the horrors of being a hostage. This month, the one preceding the Jewish New Year (Rosh Hashanah), is a time when people are enjoined to confess their shortcomings and commit to making improvements. We expect to see sordid revelation of scandal and pained public confessions every time we turn on the TV.
My casual tracking has confirmed the pattern. Clinton’s big confession on Aug. 17, 1998, was almost exactly a month before that year’s Sept. 21 New Year date. Richard Nixon resigned effective August 9, 1974, the new year kicking in Sept. 16. The Foley explosion came on Sept. 28 last year, with the holiday arriving Oct. 3. This year, we have Michael Vick’s mea culpa and Senator Craig’s mea-non-culpa to help prepare us for Rosh Hashanah on September 13.
The Craig story grows more sordid by the hour, and there is no point lingering on the details. One timeless element has emerged, and it was captured cleverly by whoever produces the Seinfeld reruns that play twice a day on the CW network. In his speech, if that is what it was, Craig said, “I did nothing wrong, because I am not gay,” a somewhat infelicitous construction under any light. The CW people made sure to run the episode where a college newspaper mistakenly reports that Jerry is gay. Jerry angrily protests, carefully adding this disclaimer: “Not that there is anything wrong with that.” It presciently satirized Craig long before he ever fastened the lock on his toilet stall.
More importantly, in terms of public discourse, public policy and national culture, Craig’s blurt exposed the absurd series of lies and contradictions that serve as obligatory premises in computing matters homosexual. The following are a list of core beliefs taken as incontestably proven. Dare to challenge one and you will immediately be thrown under the bus of progress.
1) Homosexuality is a scientific phenomenon. 2) There is no scientific way to identify a homosexual. 3) Homosexuality is genetic. 4) No gene has been discovered to this effect. 5) Homosexuality is a “lifestyle choice.” 6) There are special laws concerning treatment of gays. 7) These laws offer no system of determining who is gay. 8) If a person says he or she is gay, they are believed. 9) This is true no matter how long they have been married or how many children they have.
No expertise in science or psychology is required to know these things cannot all be true simultaneously. You cannot claim that a phenomenon is scientific without any objective criteria to identify it beyond the statement of the individual. We would never allow a person to certify any other major scientific fact about himself that had not been established through any quantifiable test.
The American Psychological Association used to consider homosexuality a disorder and voted in 1982 to abandon that designation. Today, any psychologist trying to help a person change orientation has his membership in that qualifying organization revoked. This means it is not only not a disorder, it is not even a condition that a reasonable person may attempt to adjust. It is so profoundly part of the natural order, tampering with it is an abuse. And yet we cannot test for it, on one hand, and the representation of any individual is taken as gospel, you should excuse the expression, on the other hand.
This extends even to teenagers. In what is a true crime against humanity, psychologists demand that the statement of a pre-high-schooler be accepted as incontrovertible fact. There was a lot of talk in the '90s about setting up special high schools for gay teenagers. Even Dr. Laura Schlessinger, who undertakes to promote morality, does not challenge parents when they say their child has confessed to being gay. She tells them to be understanding in helping the child adjust to his reality.
What an outright dirty lie to perpetrate on a mostly unsuspecting populace! A 14-year-old mixed-up kid, shy about communicating across gender lines, gets to announce he is gay and we all have to buy it wholesale? If we counsel him, we are hurting him, denying who he is, abusing our role as parents? Bull! Teenagers go through stage upon stage of self-discovery and self-doubt and a responsible parent needs to practice great skepticism alongside great sensitivity.
Shame on us for our silence in letting this falsehood take hold. Homosexuality cannot be both a choice and genetic, both a fact and not verifiable, both scientific and not quantifiable, both a reality the law may consider and something a person gets to declare at will. I am not taking a side in this discussion, only saying that as long as the emperor has no clothes, he should stay out of public toilets.
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