From Massachusetts News
We are seeing a major debate in Canada regarding the institution of marriage, and about opening the doors to this institution to gays and lesbians. Although I've not been married for years, I do have some thoughts about marriage and what it represents.
For many Canadians, being married is an important part of who they are, one that defines them to the community at large. Just what are the positive attributes which being married denotes?
Well, commitment for one. Marriage is all about commitment, till death do us part and all. And fidelity. Couples enter into marriage with the solemn intention of being faithful, despite what may occur down the road. What about raising a family? Although fewer Canadians now see that as a reason to be married. The list goes on, but by and large, marriage is now and has been viewed historically and culturally as a positive state. A good marriage is one of those things we all grow up hoping to attain and which, once we're married, we hope to preserve. It is so vital to our self image that people in poor marriages often go to extreme lengths to portray their union to the world as a positive one.
With all of these benefits and no real negatives, is it any wonder that gays want to claim the term 'marriage' for their unions? Of course, this requires acceptance by politicians in particular and Canadians in general if it is to happen. That acceptance, which has been forthcoming, is based on the precept that gay relationships are 'just like ours'. But what if this isn't true?
There is, in fact, a large body of evidence which shows that gay relationships are not the equal of what heterosexual marriage is. If we are to make the correct decision for this country, it behooves us to examine all sides of the situation - even if some of it isn't pretty.
The first revelation we could examine is commitment. The 1984 book "The Gay Couple" was written by a psychiatrist and psychologist (who happened to be a homosexual couple), and they hoped to dispel the myth that gay couples lacked stability and long-term relationships.
Rather than eliminate the myth, their research confirmed it. After much searching, they were able to locate only 156 couples in lasting relationships. The study also revealed that only 7 couples had actually maintained sexual fidelity and none of the seven had been together more than 5 years.
The Australian and New Zealand Journal of Sociology had this to say: "Gay" monogamous relationships are rarely faithful. "Monogamous" seems to imply some primary emotional commitment, while casual sex continues on the side (1). Imagine coming home to see your spouse heading out the door saying "Love you loads honey, got to go see the boy(girl)friend now." How does that make your creaky heterosexual bones feel? Does that feel like the commitment you went to the altar for? Didn't think so.
Ignoring the emotional effects this could have on a straight relationship, how about the health aspect of all this? Here's something from the upscale gay magazine Genre, which surveyed 1037 readers in October of 1996. "One of the single largest groups in the gay community still experiencing an increase of HIV are supposedly monogamous couples." 52% have had sex in a public park. 45% have participated in three-way sex. 42% have had sex with more than 100 different partners and 16% claim between 40 to 100 partners.(2)
And Genre is an upscale gay men's magazine. We aren't talking about street hustlers here.
How about fidelity, that "forsaking all others" thing we promised? Once again, let's let a homosexual scientist do the talking. According to Simon LeVay, a homosexual scientist who has researched homosexuality extensively - (males) are much more interested in casual sex and non monogamous relationships. In the same article in The Advocate, Gretchen Lee, managing editor of Curve, was quoted that one of her female staff writers wanted to "even cruise for sex as gay men do."(3)
How about this comment from Dr. Martin Dannecker (a German sexologist, who studied 900 homosexuals in 1991 living in "steady relationships")? According to Dr. Dannecker, 83% of males had numerous sexual encounters outside their partnerships over a one-year period. Dr. Dannecker observed "clear differences in the manner of sexual gratification" between single and non-single gay men that were the reverse of what he expected. Of the homosexual men in steady relationships, he wrote," the average number of homosexual contacts per person was 115 in the past year." In contrast, single gay men had only 45 sexual contacts. (4)
According to gay icons Marshall Kirk and Hunter Madsen, who wrote "After the Ball" (considered by many to be the definitive gay manifesto), "The cheating ratio of 'married' [committed] gay males, given enough time, approaches 100%." (5)
Here is one more quote, again from a gay magazine, which is surely the saddest testament to gay relationships that I have ever read. In the July 1999 issue of Out Magazine there was an article about a lesbian and a gay guy who decide to get married. The lesbian, Lisa, explains the limitations of their relationship, "I had huge performance anxieties, I mean, the total number of men whose bodies I'd touched and tried to please was, you know, 9. That was, like, the total number of men Bro (her gay husband) would try to please in a weekend...We'd drive out to the Palisades in the evening and talk and talk and talk, then I'd drop him off to go have sex in bathrooms." (6)
I hope that you have noticed that most of these examples are derived from gay sources. I don't want anyone to think that these quotes are coming from heterosexuals who are virulently opposed to any consideration of gay marriage. This is largely what gays are saying about themselves and their lives.
What I want to point out to you is that the entire notion of gay marriage is being presented to Canadians using the facade that gays have unions similar to heterosexual marriage. That is very simply just not true. Gays themselves admit, as you have seen here, that fidelity is not an issue with them.
For whatever reasons, and it can be backed up by research and anecdotal evidence, few gays form unions that are exclusive to their partner. In fact, the sheer prodigiousness of the gay lifestyle and the number of partners gay men have beggars the straight male's imagination. One researcher noted that "Homosexuals still have 3-4 times as many partners as heterosexuals". (7)
The American Psychological Association, who have stated that homosexuality is not a deviation and started the ball rolling towards normalization of homosexuality, also have said "after the AIDS epidemic the average number of male homosexual partners only dropped from 70 to 50 per year". (8)
Imagine that - only 50 per year. Studies in Canada show that the average Canadian only has sex 102 times per year. This is one of those things that makes me go "hmmmm".
I personally have no objection to gays doing whatever they please, or whatever pleases them, as long as it doesn't affect what I hold dear. I think I can safely extend that attitude as applying to most other Canadians. What I do object to is the gay lobby forcing the redefinition of traditional norms which are important to who and what I and other Canadians are. I object even more strenuously to their doing it with half truths, deception and outright lies.
If we're going to have this debate, and we are doing that right now, then let's have it with all the facts out in the public's eye so that we can make a wise and well-informed decision.
(1) Connell, RW. Crawford, J., Dowsett, GW., Kippax, S., Sinnott, V., Rodden, P., Berg, R., Baxter, D., Waston, L., " Danger and context: unsafe anal sexual practice among homosexual and bisexual men in the AIDS crisis," Australian and New Zealand Journal of Sociology (1990 ) 26: pp.187-208.
(2)Source: LaBarbera, Peter, " Survey finds 40% of Gay men have had more than 40 Sex Partners," The Lambda Report, January-February 1998, p.20.
(3) " Do gay men and lesbians get along?" XY Magazine, July 1999, no.20, p. 77.
(4) Wittmeier, Carmen, " Now they know the other half," Alberta Report, 1999 06 07, p.27.
(5) " After the Ball," (NY: Doubleday, 1989) pp. 304-320.
(6) Miles, Sara, " He kissed a girl," Out Magazine, July 1999, pp.51-53.
(7) Laumann, FO. Gagnon, JH., Micheal, RT., Micheals, S., The Social Organization of Sexuality ( Chicago: university of Chicago Press, 1994 ).
(8) Sally Ann Stewart, " AIDS Aftermath: Fewer Sex Partners among Gay Men," USA Today, 21 November 1984.
|Wally Moran is a life-long journalist and publisher from Ontario.|
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Our Decaying Society
5 jun 2003