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Sexual orientation

Menu

Past and present civil rights battles.
Lesbian, gay, & bisexual (LGB) issues now.
All viewpoints covered.

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In this website and just about everywhere else, "LGBT" refers to the
Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender/Transsexual community.

The term "homosexual" in this section is used in its medical sense. It
refers to persons who have a homosexual orientation. That is, they
are sexually attracted only to persons of the same sex. Unfortunately,
the term is now being considered pejorative by some in the LGBT
community.

Many years ago, we titled this section "homosexuality and bisexuality."
We are gradually converting the titles of essays in this section over
to "lesbian, gay and bisexual" topics. These are more neutral terms,
at least for now.

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Two quotations:

  • By R. Albert Mohler, President of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, in his book "Homosexuality and the Bible." 2005:
  • "Homosexuality is now the most controversial issue of debate in American culture — and it is likely to stay that way for a long time. Once famously described as “the love that dares not speak its name,” homosexuality is now openly discussed and debated throughout American society. 4

    Webmaster's comment:

    Dr. Mohler made this comment in 2005, one year after private, consensual same-gender sexual behavior was decriminalized across the U.S., and one decade before marriage was extended to same-sex couples -- both as a result of decisions by the U.S. Supreme Court.

    When this menu was most recently updated during 2018-JUN. Homosexuality remains a "controversial issue of debate." However, with the the ruling of the U.S. Supreme Court in the case Obergefell v. Hodges which legalizing gay marriage throughout the U.S. (except for American Samoa) it has diminished somewhat in importance. A debate that is now rapidly rising in importance concerns equal rights for transgender individuals.

  • The main difference between sexual orientation and gender identity:

sex difference

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Notes:

Until mid-2015, the most controversial topic related to the LGBT community was marriage equality -- allowing qualified same-sex couples to marry, limited only by the same age and genetic restrictions that are in place for opposite-sex couples. This is discussed in a separate section of this web site.

On 2015-JUN-26, the U.S. Supreme Court made a major ruling in the case Obergefell v. Hodges. For the first time, same-sex couples were able to obtain marriage licenses across almost the entire United States -- all 50 states, 4 of 5 territories and the District of Columbia. As of early-2017 the exceptions were:

  • The territory of American Samoa where most of the population are regarded as American residents, not American citizens. Thus rulings by the High Court do not necessarily apply there.

  • Some Native American jurisdictions where Native tribes are given jurisdiction over certain cultural matters.

A few county clerks may still be refusing to issue licenses, but no accounts have been published recently in the media. Even if a couple is refused a marriage license by one clerk, they can usually travel to an adjacent county in their state to obtain one.

Almost immediately after the High Court's ruling, those conservative religious and political groups that had worked to prevent marriage equality for the LGBT community switched from fighting gay marriage to concentrate their efforts at:

Although marriage equality was a major social change, some same-sex couples have been married one day only to find themselves legally fired from their jobs on the next. Pro-equality groups have shifted their efforts to expanding equality to these other areas by passing state laws prohibiting discrimination.

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Sponsored link.

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lgbt symbollgbt symbol Topics covered in this really big section:

bullet

Introduction: Key topics:
(We recommend reading some of these introductory essays first.)

bulletthumbs up imagePositive changes in the acceptance of the LGBT community:

bullet

Among the U.S. public which seems to have reached a tipping point followed by rapid change

bullet

World Vision's 2 days of inclusion during which they recognized employees' same-sex marriages

bullet

Gradual shift among conservative faith groups, as driven by membership loss

bullet Actions by a few conservative religious groups

bulletBasic info about homosexuality and bisexuality:
bulletSix common belief systems by religious folks about same-sex behavior and homosexual orientation
bulletBrief quotations
bulletMeaning of terms
bullet Meanings attributed to the term "sexual orientation"
bulletBeliefs about causes; is it changeable? abnormal? immoral?
bulletPreventing homosexuality
bulletSame-sex parenting, foster parenting, and adoption
bulletWhat percentage of the adult population are lesbian, gay, or bisexual?
bulletBisexuality;
bulletPublic opinion polls; << A large section
bulletEmails we have received;
bulletSuicide rates among gay and lesbian youth
bulletIs there a connection between sexual orientation and gender identity?
bullet Other topics: dialog; statements of professional groups; terminology

bulletThe impact of religion:
bullet Six common belief systems by religious folks about same-sex behavior and orientation
bullet The Bible and homosexuality -- the famous "clobber" passages
bullet Books covering a full range of beliefs by different faith groups
bullet Beliefs and policies of various religious groups, theologians, clergy, and laity concerning GLBT issues
bullet Other essays on dialogue, change, conflicts, policies, compromise, schism, teaching in schools, etc. -- even Ipad apps

bulletsame-sex marriage symbol Same-sex marriage (SSM), civil unions, etc
bullet SSM by U.S. state, in Canada, and other countries
bullet Public opinion polls
bullet Benefits of marriage
bullet Assessing the will of God
bullet 1999 ruling by the Supreme Court of Canada
bullet Presidential races and SSM
bullet Political party platforms
bullet etc.

bulletChallenges faced by gays and bisexuals:
bullet Employment insecurity ENDA laws
bullet Public school harassment
bullet Gay-Straight Alliances
bullet Family of origin problems
bullet Attacks on gay-positive churches
bullet Accusations of child molestation
bullet Who are the LGBT's?
 
bulletHomophobia directed against homosexuals and bisexuals:
bullet Multiple meanings of the term "homophobia"
bullet Causes, incidence, cost
bullet Boy Scouts of America
bullet "Dr. Laura"
bullet Senator Santorum (R, PA)
bullet Carl Palidino (R) running for governor in 2010
bullet Pro-equality businesses

bulletAbout ex-gays: reparative & other therapies:
bullet Introduction
bullet Statements by professional groups
bullet Beliefs by the public
bullet Results of studies

bulletLaws & regulations affecting gays & bisexuals
bullet

Worldwide laws protecting, recognizing & persecuting LGBTI persons

bullet UN declaration on the decriminalization of homosexual behavior
bullet 2011-DEC: Memo from President Obama re global LGBT rights strategy
bullet 2011-DEC: UN speech by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on worldwide LGBT rights
bullet UN declaration on the decriminalization of homosexual behavior
bullet U.S. state laws formerly criminalizing homosexual behavior
bullet Changes in laws and regulation due to the "gay agenda"
bullet U.S. and Canadian hate-crime/hate-speech legislation
bullet Should homosexuals and bisexuals be a protected class in law?
bullet Exclusion of gays and lesbians from the military.
bullet Ending discrimination in hospital visitation.
bullet Timeline of the granting of GLBT rights in Canada
bullet Persecution & execution of LGBTs in Uganda
bullet 2017-JUN: Evangelical Christians vs. Child Protection Law in Ontario Canada.

bulletNews in the media and from the Internet
bullet General news concerning LGBT developments from 1996 to the present time
bullet Events indicating an increasing acceptance of homosexuality, etc. by the public
bullet Errors and lack of clarity among some media reports
bullet The "Dr. Phil" TV program & sexual orientation
bullet Homosexual milestones in the media
bullet The National Day of Silence
bullet Support from the National Association of the Deaf
bullet Updating daily news feed. etc.

bulletParenting a gay/lesbian child; essays; sermons; personal stories; etc.
bullet What to do after your child says "I'm gay"
bullet Dealing with a son's homosexuality
bullet A gay person's letter to his church
bullet A father disowns his son for being gay
bullet Keynote sermon
bullet Analysis of an anti-gay essay
bullet Can a homosexual remain a Christian?
bullet An open letter from Christians to LGBT people by John Shore
bullet Challenging Emails we have received about homosexuality
bullet A mother's open letter to President Obama, 2009-JUN

bulletResources
bullet Books, and videos of interest to the LGB community
bullet Gay and Bisexual-positive resources
bullet Conservative Christian resources

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References used:

The following information sources were used to prepare and update the above essay. The hyperlinks are not necessarily still active today.

  1. Barack Obama, "A Proclamation..." White House, 2009-JUN-01, at: http://www.whitehouse.gov/
  2. Peter Heck, "Homosexual family law," One News Now, 2010-FEB-08, at: http://www.onenewsnow.com/
  3. "Religism" is a proposed new English word to cover bigotry based on another person's religious belief.
  4. R. Albert Mohler, Jr., "Homosexuality and the Bible." 2005. This book can be downloaded for free at: http://www.sbts.edu/

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Copyright 1996 to 20186 by Ontario Consultants on Religious Tolerance. The first date is not a typo. Ours was one of the original web sites on the Internet.
Last updated 2018-MAR-03

Author: B.A. Robinson

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