80-85% Ally, or 100% Bigoted Homophobe

Ronald Reagan said “My eighty percent friend is not my twenty percent enemy.”  I was thinking about that while bumping into yet another rant about Orson Scott Card being a “huge homophobe,” and decided to see how it might play out.  So I came up with 10 statements (one divided into two) that I could make about gay people (GLBT if you prefer, although I’m not certain all will apply as well to the BT folks as they will to the GL) which I think most GLBT advocates would agree with, and that would be useful in determining percentage of friendship a la Reagan.  Here’s what I came up with:

  1. Gay people should not be subject to violence due to their orientation.
  2. Gay people should not be subject to discrimination in employment due to their orientation.
  3. Gay people should not be subject to discrimination in parenting due to their orientation.
  4. Gay people should be able to engage in civil unions which bring them the same legal protections for their partners that heterosexual people have for their spouses.
  5. Homosexual orientation is not a matter of choice.
  6. Homosexual orientation is not primarily about sex.
  7. Gay people should be welcome in regular LDS meetings, regardless of their membership status.
  8. Gay people should be able to function as leaders in Boy Scouts of America on the same basis as straight people (ie, subject to criminal background checks).
  9. Gay people should be allowed to marry their same-sex partners
    1. civilly
    2. in the temple
  10. Gay marriage/civil unions should be recognized by the LDS Church for the purposes of the Law of Chastity as equivalent to heterosexual civil marriages.

Now, I recognize that not all of these statements would be weighted equally by the hypothetical GLBT advocates mentioned above, but I don’t think those differences in weighting are so huge as to totally invalidate their usefulness.

Speaking just for me, I can agree with almost all of those statements.  I can’t go with #10, and I could probably go with #9.1 at some point, but don’t see #9.2 happening ever.  That would put me at a 80-85% score.  From more extensive reading of OSC than the average person (ie, I have read more than Ender’s Game and his columns opposing Same Sex Marriage), I think he would reject #9 and #10, and I have 50% confidence he would agree with #4 and #7, and reasonably confident he’d accept the remainder.  This would put him at 60-80%.  That might be high — he might be at 50% or even 40%.

And what does this mean?  Am I an 80% ally, or a 20% homophobe?  Or am I just 100% homophobe because I don’t whole-heartedly agree with SSM and reject the Church’s standard for sexual behavior?  There are Mormons who will be uncomfortable with my support for #8, and with me even suggesting #10 as a possibility, although agreeing with 100% of these statements would not make me ineligible to hold a Temple Recommend.

I do believe in the principle that we need to accept those who agree with us most, or even some of the time as at least partial friends as opposed to constant and total enemies.  I’ve never found anybody I agree with 100% of the time — not even myself.

3 thoughts on “80-85% Ally, or 100% Bigoted Homophobe

  1. i pretty much agree with you 100%. i have never heard about osc being a homophobe, but i dont follow him all that much. i read some of his women of the old testament book and liked them very much, but dont see myself ever reading the sci fi type stuff.
    i have a few gay friends, one that i am particularly close to and with the 2008 elections we “broke up” because i was not willing to 100% agree with him and vote the way he thought i should. he came back and apologized 3 months later, but damage was done. i dont trust him like i used to. i am sure if he heard me say that, he would say the same thing-that he doesnt trust me like he used to.
    i have always maintained there must be some sort of information that has not been revealed to us yet. if homosexuality(living the life)is a sin, why would all of these gay people maintain they were born that way, thus meaning HF created them that way and it shouldnt be against his laws.
    i am so glad that i do not have issues with same sex attraction-it is such a difficult road for lds people who do.
    its so much to think about and deal with. around the election, i cannot believe how many people at church got on their soap boxes and preached against gay people. some of them acted like they were monsters to be destroyed. others seemed like they had never known a gay person in their lives. one young man in our stake was “caught” kissing a boy and his father attempted to beat the gay out of him. i think a brother and a few cousins attempted the same thing at different times. if our moral superiority leads members to such abominable behavior-where does that leave us? some would say that its like nephi smiting off labans head-better to kill the sin-but i would disagree. i dont have the solution, but i think things need to change somehow.
    see? a rambling mess! lol

  2. Yeah, but that’s kinda where I’m at also. I can’t go with the haters on either side — it’s just not a fit. But I also didn’t see much of the excesses of gay-bashing by Mormons, since I’m not in California or Utah. What I’ve heard concerns me a lot.

    But I’m just as concerned with those who want to make this about hate on the part of those opposed to SSM. As with many disagreements, the people on each side have framed the question differently, and those frames don’t accurately describe the people on the other side.

    I think I’ll have more to say about this later, when my head is a little more clear.

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