May we assume that every adult has the right to do what they want in the privacy of their own home, with whomever they wish, provided that all involved parties have attained their majority, are agreeable, are acting of their own free will, and are not likely to cause any serious damage or injury physical or psychological to themselves or another? I do not presume to pass judgment upon individuals such as these, because I do not feel I have the moral authority to do so. I do not believe that government has the right to pass judgment upon anyone acting within these boundaries, because I do not believe that government is competent to do so. Finally, it is my desire to ensure that I protect and preserve the above stated right for my own use, and for that of future generations.
While I have said that I do not have the moral authority to constrain other consenting adults from engaging in activities such as may fall within the parameters listed above, I do claim the authority (but not always the ability) to constrain myself from engaging in such practices as may seem morally deficient to me, or in other ways harmful to the mind, character, or body. I also claim the authority to constrain such minors as may have been placed in my care from the practice of such activities. Finally, I claim the right to publicly speak on any issue or activity, and to give my opinion on what I think may be beneficial or harmful, ethical or unethical, right or wrong, and to exhort and convince others of the veracity of my argument, and of the legitimacy of the standard of truth to which I adhere. I also believe, sentimentally perhaps, that children have a right to childhood, and to a state of childish innocence, and to be, for a time, free from worry, or care, or other adult stressors.
I think that in a society where television has become the center of the home, we could agree that what is presented on that medium give some consideration to the more immature minds that must inevitably be watching it, not to mention those among us having more delicate sensibilities. But that would of course require censorship, self imposed or otherwise. Fat chance! It is my feeling that the coming digital television evolution will enable each household to more exactly tailor the content that they are to be exposed to, while at the same time provide much wider avenues of expression to artists and producers of different intellectual and moral viewpoints. This will allow the jaded to sate their every desire, the pious to feast on Bishop Sheen, inquiring minds their fill of CNN, enable young lovers to slack their thirst for passion, and still give parents room to allow their children time to remain children, each blissfully unaware of programming choices of the other.
Acceptance of sexual behaviors varies with the political climate. It is by no means an ever-upward movement towards enlightened tolerance. It is, I think, merely a swing of the pendulum currently towards liberalism, which will eventually, and with considerable momentum, swing back. While I have every right to judge and express my opinion about behavior in the abstract, I have no grounds, especially as a conservative Christian, to condemn my fellow man. A good example of a hypocrite would be a person who, after having committed adultery in private, makes a big show of being offended when hearing that another man has committed adultery. On the other hand a person who having committed adultery privately then publicly says that adultery is wrong is not a hypocrite. He is merely an adulterer who knows the difference between right and wrong. Having said that, I would like to add that I think we would all be more comfortable not having the slightest clue about the sex life of our friends and neighbors. To be sure, I am certainly more comfortable knowing that they are not aware of the details of mine.
I believe that our society should be a place where individuals are given the respect due all humans. All individuals should be secure in their persons and property, free from fear, and be able to live in an atmosphere of tolerance that creates opportunities for individuals to develop, and to live their lives in whatever way seems fitting and proper to them. I believe that the government should confine itself to the regulation of civil matters, and not attempt to regulate the intimate relations between consenting adults, certainly not in the privacy of their own homes, nor in the public venue except when the overwhelming majority of its citizens demand it. But I think it is expecting far too much for everyone to condone every choice of lifestyle or opinion. Certainly the idea of sexual identity is far more emotionally charged than political identity. Consider the range of debate that politics generates. So I believe that you must allow me to disagree with some of the statements that I have heard made about sexuality. Gender orientation is ultimately one’s choice and not one’s fate. To be sure most of us are born with either male or female sexual organs. Our culture and our nature conspire to propel us in certain directions. Our emotions may sometimes irresistibly compel us to engage in various behaviors. But my experience has been that I always have had some kind of a choice in the matter although I have made many sexual choices that I have ultimately come to regret. Any consideration of alternative sexual lifestyles must be overshadowed by a contemplation of the value of relationship and love. How earnestly humans yearn for both! It is understandable that we would occasionally be willing to disregard gender in the pursuit of it. The depth of love and commitment that often spring from these relationships must stay us from condemning them out of hand. It is unacceptable that civil society should not recognize their validity, and the right of people to enter into them and maintain them as best they can. Nevertheless, I could never recommend such a course as being the ideal, and I think it is disingenuous for anyone to do so.
For my fellows who would exhort me to proclaim boldly that alternative sexual behavior is contrary to the Word of God, well, yes I think that it is. But so much of what we all do, religious and non religious alike, seems to me to be in rebellion against God that I hesitate to be the one to cast the first stone for that fleshy sin. Surely, the hatred and self-righteousness directed at the gay and lesbian community is a hundred thousand times worse. Issues of sexual sin can be addressed long after the issue of the resurrection has been dealt with, which in my opinion is a matter far more pertinent to the eternal destination of the soul. But in spite of my own moral inadequacies, I cannot be silent when these things are spoken of in public.