'Homosexuals are Excluding Themselves from Marriage, Family'

By Patrick Goodenough | July 7, 2008 | 8:05 PM EDT

Pacific Rim Bureau (CNSNews.com) - Homosexuals and lesbians charge that laws seeking to ban same-sex "marriage" and adoption are discriminatory, but they are themselves responsible for their exclusion from marriage and family, according to an Australian medical ethics campaigner.

"By its very nature, homosexuality has excluded itself," Dr. David van Gend told a national marriage forum in Canberra this week. "It has stepped outside the circle of life -- the timeless, endless natural circle of male and female, parent and offspring."

Lesbians and homosexuals could, however, "rejoin the circle of life," he said, pointing to "the growing number of ex-gays."

Van Gend, a physician in eastern Australia who also campaigns against euthanasia and embryonic stem cell research, was addressing a forum at the federal parliament complex, organized by pro-family groups.

At the same event, Prime Minister John Howard challenged his political opponents to support swift passage of a bill banning same-sex marriage, to prevent it from getting bogged down in a forthcoming election campaign. The main opposition party has agreed, strengthening the chances of a ban being passed within the next fortnight.

Howard, who described marriage as "a fundamental, bedrock institution of our society which has contributed massively to our stability," received standing ovations.

He denied that the ban was discriminatory, arguing that there was a difference between tolerance and endorsement.

Campaigners for same-sex marriage rights in Australia have sought to characterize their community as a persecuted minority, using expressions like "apartheid" and recalling discrimination against the indigenous Aborigines.

At a rally in Sydney last week, leading homosexual activist Rodney Croome tried to draw a parallel between government policies relating to Aborigines, and later to illegal refugees, to homosexuals today.

"Pink is the new black," he declared.

Croome has also described organizations like the Australian Family Association, which organized the marriage forum, as "hate groups."

In his presentation to the gathering, van Gend tackled the "discrimination" claim.

"The political success of gay activism has been due to portraying gays as a persecuted quasi-racial minority group -- like blacks or Jews -- and thereby touching a sensitive spot in a guilty Western conscience," he said.

"Yet the racial analogy is false, since blacks cannot stop being black, but gays can stop being gay."

Challenging the view that "gays are born that way," van Gend cited the American Psychiatric Association's assessment that "there are no replicated scientific studies supporting any specific biological etiology for homosexuality."

"The origins of homosexuality are likely to be a very complex interaction of nature and nurture, genetic vulnerabilities and cultural influences," he argued. "But whatever its origins, the outcome of homosexuality is best understood as a very complex state of confusion over sexual identity."

Van Gend pointed to studies indicating that while this confusion was experienced by a proportion of teenagers, that proportion diminished as years passed.

"he National Health and Social Life survey across the USA in 1994, the biggest and best study available, found that eight percent of 16-year-olds thought they were gay - but, significantly, that by age 18 only four percent still thought they were gay, and by age 25, only two percent still thought they were gay.

"What that means is that most sexual confusion in school children clears away if left to itself. It doesn't need therapy or counseling. It is a passing phase ..."

Because of this, he said, it was important that students' sexual confusion was not entrenched by "gay-affirming curricula" or "gay pride" clubs at schools.

Van Gend said that for the sake of homosexuals wanting to change, "the clinical truth must be made known - that it is possible, given determination, patience, and skilled help, for them to leave behind their unwanted same-sex attraction."

Then they, too, would be able to "become biologically marriageable, and reclaim their rightful place in the great circle of life as male and female -- married, with children of their own."

See earlier story:
Australian PM Out-Maneuvers Opponents of Same-Sex 'Marriage' Ban (Aug. 05, 2004)

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Patrick Goodenough
Patrick Goodenough
Spencer Journalism Fellow