A Michigan Republican defended his Facebook posting of an article about “the filthy lifestyle” of those in the LGBT community because he felt it was worth sharing. Dave Agema, a member of the Republican National Committee, posted an article entitled, “Everyone Should Know These Statistics on Homosexuals.”
The piece, written by Dr. Frank Joseph, is more or less a huge list of statistics that supposedly reveal the “truth” of the “dirty nature” of homosexuality. The point of his post appears to be a warning to parents that children are, or will soon be, indoctrinated in public schools about the “homosexual agenda,” and if parents don’t do something, they shouldn’t be surprised when their children come home one day saying that they think they’re gay.
Here’s some of the statistics from their list:
- Homosexuals live unhealthy lifestyles, and have historically accounted for the bulk of syphilis, gonorrhea, Hepatitis B, the “gay bowel syndrome” (which attacks the intestinal tract), tuberculosis and cytomegalovirus (27).
- 73% of psychiatrists say homosexuals are less happy than the average person, and of those psychiatrists, 70% say that the unhappiness is NOT due to social stigmatization (13).
- 25-33% of homosexuals and lesbians are alcoholics (11).
- 78% of homosexuals are affected by STDs (20).
- Judge John Martaugh, chief magistrate of the New York City Criminal Court has said, “Homosexuals account for half the murders in large cities” (10).
- Captain William Riddle of the Los Angeles Police says, “30,000 sexually abused children in Los Angeles were victims of homosexuals” (10).
- It takes approximately $300,000 to take care of each AIDS victim, so thanks to the promiscuous lifestyle of homosexuals, medical insurance rates have been skyrocketing for all of us(10).
The website where this posting is found is called “Tradition in Action,” and its mission is as follows:
“Tradition In Action is committed to defend the perennial Magisterium of Holy Mother Church and Catholic traditions. TIA also works for a restoration of Christian civilization, adapted to contemporary historical circumstances.”
Dr. Joseph’s article cites tons of statistics from 29 different sources, none of which are more recent than 1994, despite the fact that the date on the post is 2005. Most of the sources range in date from the late ’70s to the mid ’80s. During this time, more than 70% of the public in the U.S. believed that sexual relations between two people of the same sex was “always wrong.” The number of people who believed that in 2004 had dropped to 54%, and is even lower today.
Part of the reason for the change is generational: Today’s younger generations were still children and teens in the 1990s, and are just now gaining strong political voices as they get into their 20s, 30s and early 40s. These two generations are far more tolerant of diverse lifestyles than older generations, particularly the Silent Generation and older Boomers.
That doesn’t explain the entire story, however. 20 years ago, roughly half of people could or would say they knew someone who was gay. Today, that number has increased to 76%.
Furthermore, there is science available now that wasn’t available 30 years ago regarding the biological causes of homosexuality. A 2012 U.S. News & World Report article discusses the genetics of homosexuality, saying that certain epi-marks (information that controls how genes get expressed during gestation) get passed from father to daughter, causing her to be a lesbian, or mother to son, causing him to be gay. According to the article, the hereditary link of homosexuality, despite a gay’s or lesbian’s parents being straight, has been known for some time.
These epi-marks must be strong for the child to be homosexual, and this study is among the first of its kind, so more studies are needed, but it adds to the pile of increasing scientific evidence that being gay is not a mere lifestyle choice.
Another of Joseph’s resources is the Family Research Institute, which has a very strong anti-gay bias. For instance, they published speculation that Sally Ride’s death was because she was a lesbian, whose average lifespans are around 60 years, instead of the 80 or so years of “normal” women. The claim ended with the following statement:
“Is this proof that homosexual activity leads to an early death? No, of course not. Had she stayed married, Sally Ride might have died at the same age and of the same malady. But, on average, her death fits a consistent pattern suggesting that homosexuality is associated with an early demise.” [Source]
Indeed, Joseph’s piece makes liberal use of that correlation. The rest of the statistics cited are definitely too old to be considered relevant today, and may even have been flawed in some way due to bias or methodology in the studies.
The fact that a Republican reposted this article on his Facebook page is not surprising; many of the religious right strongly cling to flawed statistics and outdated studies as the “scientific” evidence they need to make their religious arguments. When they don’t have that, they cling to the Bible and to their limited and flawed understanding of the actual history of homosexuality in society. They also tend to make flawed or even contradictory statements when it comes to tradition vs. progressivism.
Twenty Michigan Republicans have called for Agema to step down, saying that the GOP can’t win elections by insulting a huge segment of the electorate, and they’re right. Part of the reason for their sad showing in November was their candidates and delegates insulting and alienating various segments of the electorate, including gays, minorities and women.
Joseph’s posting is worse than offensive, and it’s not just gays who will find it insulting. Anybody who supports equality and gay rights will likely also find it insulting, and will turn away from a politician who supports it. Agema fired back, however, saying that “liberal Republicans” were making Joseph’s words out to be his own, and went on to say:
“I think it was a piece worth sharing given the debate over gay marriage that is happening in the Supreme Court. I strongly maintain my position in support of marriage between a man and a woman and I will not back down from my core beliefs in support of strengthening the family.” [Source]
One thing’s for certain, Agema and anybody who agrees with Dr. Joseph’s words aren’t likely to win any popularity contests anytime soon. That includes elections.