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Am I homophobic?

Here is how I feel about homosexuals as a straight man:

  • When I see two men kiss I feel uncomfortable.
  • When I see two women kiss I am turned on. Do not ask me why.
  • I believe that men having sex with men is a sin. The same for women with women. But then so are most sex acts, not just those. That comes from my badly practised Catholic religion.
  • That same religion – and my own experience – teaches me that homosexuals are no worse or better than I am. Men are naturally sinful. I have sins enough of my own. It is part of the fallen nature of man.
  • I do not believe in same-sex marriage.
  • If my son married a man I would be saddened, but I would not disown him.

From this some say that I hate gays.

That goes too far. It seems to come from the idea that if I do not like something you do, then I must hate you.

But that is not necessarily true. Here is an example of what I mean:

There are men in my family who seem to be completely incapable of sticking to one woman. I know some of their children, so I know to my bone that what they are doing is wrong.

Do I agree with what they are doing? No way.

Does their behaviour sadden me? Of course.

Do I hate them? No, of course not.

Do I look down on them? When I was younger I did, on that part of them, but not any more. Now that I am older the same thoughts have gone through my head too. Only the grace of God has kept me from doing the same. I know that, so I know I am no better than they are.

There is a difference between thinking something is wrong and hating or looking down on those who do it.

I know full well that American society is run by straight white men, many of whom look down on anyone who is different from them. And that sort of thinking – gays are different, therefore they must be messed up – is something I cannot believe in for one second. They are no worse or better than anyone else. Anyone who has read enough of this blog knows just where I am coming from on that one, since I have written at length about race.

I know that Catholic ideas of sex go flat against human nature. Certainly my own. Does that mean it is wrong? Not necessarily. In my own case it has kept me from making some huge mistakes in my life, even apart from whatever divine authority I believe it has.

Am I applying my religion to people who do not believe in it? Yes. But that is unavoidable. I have to function from one set of moral beliefs or another and apply them to the world.

– Abagond, 2008.

Update (2018): I wrote an update to this post: Am I still homophobic?

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