You’re not gay, just a little retarded

LDS theology does not make room for homosexuality. The Proclamation on the Family declares the LDS binary construct of gender to be “an essential characteristic of individual premortal, mortal, and eternal identity and purpose.” The strict model of male-female gender roles is broken by homosexuality, transsexuality, and intersex people.

In the early days, homosexuality was not addressed at all, a reflection of Victorian-era society where sex was rarely mentioned in public at all. With the industrial revolution came the shocking idea that heterosexual people could marry for love. (See every Jane Austen novel for examples of her frighteningly progressive views on love matches, which came to destroy society as we knew it.) Ironically, when marriage as a civil, familial, economic contract was destroyed and the institution was radically overhauled as a matter of personal choice, this set the stage for homosexuals to demand rights for themselves as well. After all, if relationships are about love and not civil contracts for financial, procreative, and dynastic purposes, then what’s gender got to do with it? By the 1960’s, gay people were no longer being sentenced to hard labour for their lifestyles. They were insisting: “We exist, we are not perverts, and we are people just like you who desire love and affection in stable relationships.”

Homosexuality is slowly being understood as a normal variant of human behaviour. But we’re still not there by a long shot. In the United States, the president has a pathetic stance on gay marriage, and in Britain homosexuals have full equal rights in civil unions, but not the word marriage. (Although many, gay and straight, don’t really care due to Britain being one of the least religious places on the planet.) Mormons can object, but they can no longer pretend that homosexuality doesn’t exist.

The new tack they’ve taken is to imply that some people aren’t gay, they’re just a little retarded. Homosexuality is just a disability, and those with it have nothing to contribute to society and need to be kept out of the way. You know, like Downs Syndrome. These poor souls don’t understand that their abominable sexual desires are just the result of being malformed. This approach allows the LDS Church to quietly begin accepting the biological basis for homosexuality, but by lumping it in with unwanted natural diseases, they can continue to make attempts to repair people who are afflicted by it.

The Prop 8 fireside was laced with the language of pity, repeatedly discrediting homosexuality as a legitimate state of being and encouraging people to show loving condescension to those afflicted by “same-gender attraction,” as the Church prefers to call it.

“I wish to say that our opposition to attempts to legalise‐sex marriage should never be interpreted as justification for hatred, intolerance, or abuse of those who profess homosexual tendencies either individually or as a group. We love and honor them as sons and daughters of God.”

“Nothing we say here can be used as an excuse to treat those with same gender attractions partially or disrespectfully.”

“There are faithful temple‐worthy members of the church who struggle with this great challenge, often in silence, fear, and great pain. Our hearts go out to these good brothers and sisters even as we uphold the divine truths the Lord has revealed about marriage.”

“We don’t discriminate. We have friends that are gay. It’s just that we believe, and we want to stand up for family.”

In fact, the Church is so happy to look after these poor impaired souls that they’ve even featured one on the new mormon.org. Marishia, who lives in Maui (screenshot just in case this page disappears), describes the horror of being plagued by gayness. Keep in mind that every one of these entries is vetted by the proprietors of mormon.org, and this is an official source of information about LDS beliefs:

“Drugs, alcohol, unhealthy relationships, and geographical moves were ways I used to cope with the depressing and suicidal thoughts I had about being a homosexual.”

i.e. Homosexuality is the cause of self-destructive behaviour. Self-destructive behaviour is not the result of internal crisis and self-loathing compounded by rejection by family, church, and society. See how it really works?

“When I prayed to know why I was born homosexual a few hours later I received my answer. I have come to understand that homosexuality is similar to a physical defect and in the next life I will no longer have this physical defect, therefore I will no longer be a homosexual. I know that Heavenly Father loves the homosexual, but not the act. As long as I don’t act upon these feelings and I follow the example of my Savior Jesus Christ I will be able to return once again to live with my Heavenly Father.”

Ah, yes, now I understand. Allowing homosexuals to do what they like is akin to removing the safety helmets from window lickers and allowing them to run wild with a pair of scissors in each fist. We’re really just looking out for their well-being by refusing to recognise them as complete people with the right to freely choose a love-based relationship. If these poor little retards can just refrain from leg-humping other retards, then on resurrection morning they can wake up non-retarded and properly attracted to the genitalia God wants them to procreate with.

How could I have gotten it so wrong?

13 thoughts on “You’re not gay, just a little retarded

  1. As someone who has dealt with and known people with Down Syndrome, I find your post in bad taste and offensive.

    People with Down Syndrome do not deserve the contempt you have shown them here.

    • I would have thought the level of sarcasm I heaped on the entire piece would have made it obvious that I think treating disabled people as subhuman is just as contemptible as treating gays that way.

    • Simply using a word which others use to cause offence or to dehumanise isn’t itself wrong. Saying the entire post is in bad taste/offensive only because she used a word some use pejoratively to refer to those with Down’s is like saying you can’t ever use the word “fag” in a satirical piece used to show how it is wrong to use pejorative terms to dehumanise others. And that is exactly what she did.

      Obviously the entire point of the post was to show why it’s wrong to use those types of terms with intent to offend, insult, or dehumanise, regardless of what group you’re targeting. She might just as well used the church’s treatment of blacks (and the belief that they would/will turn white in the resurrection).

      Get off your high horse. She was not in any way being disrespectful or rude towards disabled people. A word is just a word until there’s context around it. Getting offended at the existence of a word/phrase without looking at context or intent is idiotic.

      • Thanks, Craig. I did have a moment of self-doubt where I wondered if I didn’t express that point. But no, I think I did. The attitude that gays can be shelved under “deficient — do not use” in this lifetime is as stupid as the idea that those with legitimate handicaps have nothing to offer the world. You won’t be getting an exasperating retort from Seth R. — he’s been banned. His trolling has ceased to yield productive conversation and simply become an effort to tear me down, and that’s where I draw the line.

        • Wait, you mean we can go back to responding to what you wrote instead of wasting our breath on Seth R.?

        • While I was sort of looking forward to see what sort of ridiculous way he was going to shift the blame back onto you (or me), or make up another ridiculous complaint, I’m glad he won’t be trolling around anymore.

          His problem is that he cannot countenance any sort of criticism of the church, but he thinks he’s being reasonable. He takes it as a personal affront and no amount of proof or reason is enough to get him to stop freaking out.

  2. Pingback: Choose the Right « Molly Muses . . .

  3. “The new tack they’ve taken is to imply that some people aren’t gay, they’re just a little retarded.”

    And they say it with the exact same ignorance and condescension as those who try to pretend something like Downs isn’t that bad, because “they love life!” (the worst argument against abortion, ever … okay maybe not the worst, but it’s a terrible argument). My big sisters have worked with the mentally and severely handicapped for the past 15 years, and I can tell you that they experience life with pretty much the same range of emotions and cognitive understanding as the rest of us, just maybe not learning or comprehending as much or as easily.

    But I digress. I feel like this treatment of sexual orientation as a disease/deformity is worse than before. Because now they’re masking their prejudice and hate with loving language. They *say* that violence and hate are wrong, but when you drill into people’s heads that being gay is perverted and wrong, how else do you expect them to interact with them?? So now they can play the persecution card, because they *say* hate and violence and discrimination are bad, so if we interpret their prejudices as hateful or discriminatory, we’re just intolerant of their beliefs. *sigh*

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