Monday, April 25, 2011

Response To Supposed Facts, A:

This blog post is a response to 3 separate articles on TraditionInAction's website that seek to criticise homosexuals. Each of these 3 articles will be responded to in turn. They will be termed "Article A", "Article B" and "Article C" for the purposes of this response.

"Article A" is located at the following link and is copied on multiple other websites:

It will be detailed how the articles' heterosexist narrative is not substantiated by their sources. Most, if not all of Article A involves information that is fabricated, misrepresented or based upon flawed methodology. For this reason, it is primarily the references that will be criticized.

  • Clicking each contents section will take you to that section.
  • "Heterosexist" is used here as a descriptor, rather than a pejorative.
  • Quotes have coloured backgrounds. Yellow = from the article. Orange = from another source.
  • Numbers under each contents sections are the references countered within those sections.





The average (mean) year in which the references in Article A are from is 1986. This is ~30 years ago. This doesn't negate the article's validity but is a red flag, suggesting that the author has cherry picked "evidence" from across the decades to make their stance seem justified.



Many of the references are from magazines/newspapers. These are scientifically redundant. At best they can be used to refute absolutes, not form generalisations. They represent a layman's anecdotal opinion which has been deliberately sensationalized.

(1) Advocate, 1985
(10) Kaifetz, J. "Homosexual Rights Are Concern for Some," Post-Tribune, 18 December 1992
(12) Lesbian News, January 1994
(17) Newsweek, February 1993
(18) Newsweek, 4 October 1993
(20) Rueda, E. "The Homosexual Network." Old Greenwich, Conn., The Devin Adair Company, 1982, p. 5
(22) San Francisco Sentinel, 27 March 1992
(23) Science Magazine, 18 July 1993, p. 322
(25) "The Overhauling of Straight America." Guide Magazine. November, 1987
*(27) United States Congressional Record, June 29, 1989

*Reference 27 is just a record of what is said in congress debates. A politician, not a qualified researcher or medical practitioner, made the statements attributed to reference 27 over two decades ago. This source is used in Article A to make historical and epidemiological claims about homosexuality. All other references listed above are newspapers or magazines. This amounts to over one third of the references for Article A, which have no scientific merit whatsoever.



Article A Only cited the following 4 references to establish the population size of homosexuals and 2 of them are 2 of the more reliable looking references:
(15) Morton-Hunt Study for Playboy
(23) Science Magazine, 18 July 1993, p. 322
(26) United States Census Bureau
(28) University of Chicago's Nation Research Corp

References 14 and 21 are not even  used in Article A:
(14) Manlight, G. et. al. "Chronic Immune Stimulation By Sperm Alloantigens." J. American Med. Assn., 1984, 251(2), pp. 237-438
(21) San Francisco AIDS Foundation, "Can We Talk."



(2) Bayer, R. Homosexuality and American Psychiatry

Reference 2 is used in Article A as follows:
"Homosexuals got homosexuality removed from the list of mental illnesses in the early 70s by storming the annual American Psychiatric Association (APA) conference on successive years. "Guerrilla theater tactics and more straight-forward shouting matches characterized their presence" (2)."

Article A's author's contribution is in yellow, while the quote from reference 2 is in light orange. The quotation here does not actually state or imply what the sentence preceding it states. Unfortunately, the page number for this quotation is not given, so the quotation above can not be placed within context.

Homosexuals did protest at the APA conference. This does not mean that the removal of homosexuality from the DSM resulted from those protests. Part of Bayer's book is viewable as an online preview, see below.

"Homosexuality and American Psychiatry, The Politics of Diagnosis" by Ronald Bayer, page 4:
"Psychiatry did not capitulate to the pressure of Gay liberation, but rather revealed an admirable flexibility. Unlike those who were unyieldingly committed to antihomosexual views rooted in Judeo-Christian past, the leadership of the American Psychiatric Association had demonstrated wisdom, insight and the strength to break with conventional but scientifically unwarranted beliefs".

(3) Bell, A. and Weinberg, M. Homosexualities: a Study of Diversity Among Men and Women. New York: Simon & Schuster, 1978

The very first point in Article A cites reference 3. Even at the time of this study, Weinberg and Bell specifically pointed out that their findings were not representative of the average homosexual.

Bell, & Weinberg, "Homosexualities", page 22:
"It should be pointed out that reaching any consensus about the exact number of homosexual men or women exhibiting this or that characteristic is not an aim of the present study. The nonrepresentative nature of other investigators' samples as well as of our own precludes any generalization about the incidence of a particular phenomenon even to persons living in the locale where the interviews were conducted, much less homosexuals in general."

(4) Cameron et. al. ISIS National Random Sexuality Survey. Nebraska Med. Journal, 1985, 70, pp. 292-299

Paul Cameron is the founder of the Family Research Institute. He was kicked out of multiple reputable scientific associations in both Canada and America due to malpractice. His work has also been frequently demonstrated to be methodologically flawed and so, unsurprisingly, it is used quite a bit in this article. Reference 4  has multiple methodological flaws, each sufficient to destroy its accuracy. The "journal" it is published in does not even have an impact factor.

(7) Family Research Institute, Lincoln, NE

Those references that sound potentially credible actually aren't, such as reference 7. The Family Research Institute is considered a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC).

The SPLC is not an agenda-laden extremist hate group (unlike the FRI):
"The Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) is an American nonprofit civil rights organization. It is internationally known for legal victories against white supremacist groups; free legal representation for victims of hate groups; monitoring of hate groups, militias and extremist organizations; and educational programs that promote tolerance.[2][3][4]"

(8) Fields, Dr. E. "Is Homosexual Activity Normal?" Marietta, GA

The Anti Defamation League has a page dedicated to Edward Fields, the author of Reference 8 (a Neo-Nazi, White supremacist, anti-Semitic, anti-Communist according to them). Once more, this reference is little more than the opinion of a random member of the populace. It is not a scientific, peer-reviewed study. This individual is additionally a known associate of multiple hate groups.

(9) Jay and Young. The Gay Report. Summit Books, 1979, p. 275

Reference 9 is used to claim that:
"73% of all homosexuals have had sex with boys under 19 years of age."

Given that the majority of the US population have had sex with "boys" and "girls" under the age of 19, this point seems especially redundant. CDC, 2006-2010, NSFG, Series 23, No. 25, Table 33:
"Mean age at first intercourse for men aged 15-44: 17.1 years".

The following link provides a full critique of the methodology of "The Gay Report"Here is a brief quotation from it:
"They were also heavily criticized by reputable researchers in the field for suffering from some very serious methodological flaws. The many shortcomings of these informal surveys have become so widely recognized that they are rarely performed anymore, except for those magazines which continue to perform them purely for the sake of titillating entertainment. Their methodological flaws have rendered them largely useless from a statistical standpoint. The Gay Report provides a typical example of these shortcomings."

(13) Lief, H. Sexual Survey Number 4: Current Thinking on Homosexuality, Medical Aspects of Human Sexuality, 1977, pp. 110-11

Reference 13 is used to suggest that psychologists believe homosexuals to be less happy due to being homosexual. In an American Psychological Association (APA) article (page 12) on bias against LGBT people within the mental health profession, reference 13 is listed under the heading "Bias in Therapy with Lesbian and Gay Men". Reference 13 is a study specifically showing prejudice among mental health practitioners at the time.

Medical Aspects of Human Sexuality ceased publication in 1992 and is unavailable online. LGBT people are more likely to be depressed, as a result of the minority stress, not as a result of homosexuality itself, as evidenced in section 1, here.

(19) Psychological Reports, 1986, 58, pp. 327-37

Reference 19 is likely another reference to some of Paul Cameron's work, given that it is published in psychological reports. Dr. Gregory Herek:
"Psychological Reports publishes a larger number of articles and has a lower rejection rate than is typical for psychology journals. According to JCR in 1994 and 1995, for example, Psychological Reports was the third largest journal for which statistics were collected, publishing 510 articles in 1994 and 504 articles in 1995... Psychological Reports is also different from the vast majority of psychology and social science journals in that it requires contributing authors to pay a fee (in recent years, $27.50 per page). The practice of charging a per-page fee or requiring purchase of preprinted copies of the article is rare in psychological and social science journals. Such per-page fees are not charged by the high-prestige psychology journals (e.g., those published by the American Psychological Association and the Association for Psychological Science)."



(5) "Changes in Sexual Behavior and Incidence of Gonorrhoea." Lancet, April 25, 1987

Reference 5 is used as follows in Article A:
"Homosexuals account for 3-4% of all gonorrhea cases, 60% of all syphilis cases, and 17% of all hospital admissions (other than for STDs) in the United States (5)"

This source has no abstract online. Correlations do not necessitate direct causal links. African Americans are hugely disproportionately affected by both gonorrhoea, unlike homosexuals in the above quote it seems, and syphilis.

Assuming the statistics to be correct, the increased rate of hospital admissions is most likely explainable by the heightened risk of violent victimisation faced by LGBT people. Rosario et al. 2001, American Journal of Public Health, 91(6), 903-906, DOI: 10.2105/AJPH.91.6.903
"Youths who report same-sex or both-sex romantic attraction are more likely to experience extreme forms of violence than youths who report other-sex attraction."

A more holistic discussion of Syphilis can be found in a recent review: Stamm, 2010, Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy, 54(2), 583–589, DOI: 10.1128/AAC.01095-09
"While the widespread epidemics of syphilis that occurred in Russia in the 1990s and more recently in China mostly involved heterosexuals, smaller outbreaks in the United States, Canada, and England predominately involved men who have sex with men... However, recent increases in syphilis rates for U.S. women and infants suggest that heterosexually transmitted syphilis may be an emerging problem in the United States".

(6) Corey, L. and Holmes, K. "Sexual Transmission of Hepatitis A in Homosexual Men." New England J. Med., 1980, pp. 435-38

The study is used in Article A to argue that gay men have large numbers of partners. Measurements of promiscuity were not the aim of this study. It investigated hepatitis A transmission. In fact, the study's authors (Corey & Holmes) specifically state in a response to a letter in the same journal that:
"We were careful to acknowledge that our study was designed to identify the mechanism of acquisition of hepatitis infection in this population and that we had selected a group of men who had histories of many casual sex partners and who might be at very high risk of sexually transmitted infections."

The authors specifically selected promiscuous men for their study and attempts to treat this sample population as representative of all homosexuals are contrary to the authors' intentions and deceptive in the extreme.

(11) Kus, R. "Alcoholics Anonymous and Gay America." Medical Journal of Homosexuality, 1987, 14(2), p. 254

This reference is used to claim that:
"25-33% of homosexuals and lesbians are alcoholics (11)"

This appears to be another article that is purely on men but which is used to refer to lesbians as well. Unfortunately payment is necessary to view the full article, so that cannot be confirmed.

A heightened degree of alcohol dependency in homosexuals is an unsurprising consequence of minority stress. Drugs, both legal and illegal, are potentially a coping mechanism for many people, regardless of sexual orientation. Multiple studies indicate that increased heterosexism corresponds to more alcohol and substance abuse. To use such statistics as a heterosexist criticism of homosexuality is hypocritical.

A subsequent study by the same author, published in the same journal, was entitled "Alcoholism and Non-Acceptance of Gay Self: The Critical Link" and concluded that "not accepting being gay as a positive thing may therefore explain the etiology and thus the high incidence of alcoholism among gay American men." (1988, Journal of Homosexuality, 15(1-2), 25-41, DOI: 10.1300/J082v15n01_04).

(16) MsKusick, L. et. al. "AIDS and Sexual Behavior Reported By Gay Men in San Francisco." Am. J. Pub. Health, 1985, 75, pp. 493-96
"Many homosexuals don't pay heed to warnings of their lifestyles: "Knowledge of health guidelines was quite high, but this knowledge had no relation to sexual behavior" (16)".

This is another study exclusively on gay men but that is deceptively represented here as referring to "homosexuals"The sentence in the study that directly precedes the one quoted is as follows: 
"Men in non-monogamous relationships and men not in relationships reported substantial reductions in high-risk sexual activity, but not a corresponding increase in low-risk sexual behavior."

The study actually showed that at the time it occurred, risky sexual behaviour was decreasing among gay men, independently of any awareness of health guidelines. The authors freely acknowledge that the study is not representative of gay men as a whole:
"The sample is not random and the response rate from those who were given the questionnaire is low."
"Sexual behavior may be comparable to other high-risk behaviors such as tobacco smoking, obesity, non-seat belt use, and alcohol consumption, where knowledge alone is not sufficient to change behavior."

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC):
"Percent of adults age 20 years and over who are obese: 34% (2007-2008)
Percent of adults age 20 years and over who are overweight (and not obese): 34% (2007-2008)"

It seems that not conforming to health guidelines is ubiquitous among humans. A systematic review of sexual health intervention programs involving the general population (Lazarus et al. 2010, Croat Medical Journal. 51(1):74–84) found that in the general population, knowledge of health guidelines doesn't correlate with behaviour:
"Peer-led interventions were also more successful in improving sexual knowledge, though there was no clear difference in their effectiveness in changing behavior. The improvement in sexual health knowledge does not necessarily lead to behavioral change."

(24) Statistical Abstract of the U.S., 1990

Reference 24 is used to makes the following point, along with 2 other related ones:
"Homosexuals aren't discriminated against in employment, so why should they be a protected class?
* The average yearly income of a homosexual is $55,430.00 (most of which is disposable because no children to take care of!). The average of the general population is $32,144.00. The average of blacks is $12,166.00 (24)"

This reference is very non-specific, given that the abstract is hundreds of thousands of words long. Page 446 shows the mean income of $32,144 in 1987 for the population but mean income for black people is $20,743, not $12,166 as Article A states. These statistics are also both per household, not per individual. Furthermore, the census does not actually seem to have records for homosexuals. The divisions are based upon race, sex and age. The claims attributed to this reference appear to be fabricated.

Article A frequently tries to portray homosexuality as pathological and/or as a mental impairment, which is contradicted by the claim above. Reference 16 has values for its participants' income (table 1), from which the mean income can be worked out. Over 90% were white.

Number of Participants x annual income in thousands of dollars = total income for that group.

151 x 24=3624
134 x 23=3082
181 x 21=3801
189 x 28=5292

Total participants = 655 (The sum of the numbers on the left hand side).
Total income for all participants = $15,799,000 (The sum of the numbers on the right hand side).
Mean income for gay men = 15,799,000/655 = $24,120

Marieka Klawitter, 2011, Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, 30(2), 334–358:
"The results suggest that gay men face an earnings penalty that varies significantly (though not sizably) across local areas, and that state antidiscrimination policies may decrease that penalty in private sector employment."

Nick Drydakis, 2009, Labour Economics, 16(4), 364–372:
"Mailing pairs of curriculum vitae, distinguished only by the sexual orientation of the applicants, led to the observation that gay men faced a significantly lower chance of receiving an invitation for an interview."

(29) Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders Fourth Edition, American Psychiatric Association, 1994.

Reference 29 is used in Article A as follows:
"If you're not going to discriminate based on "sexual orientation", then you must not discriminate against any of the following. Bestiality, pedophile, necrophilia., exhibitionism....... If you discriminate against any of these, you're a hypocrite. These "sexual orientations" are generally known as "paraphilias", and are mental disorders - just like homosexuality used to be (29)."

Almost all of this is actually the author of Article A's opinion, rather than an American Psychiatric Association (APA) statement. The term "sexual orientation" is misused by the author. Sexual orientation is based upon sex (gender) so the paraphilias mentioned do not actually fall within it's definition. The only thing the author is correct about is that homosexuality did used to be classified as a mental disorder but has since been removed.

Homosexuality's removal from the DSM arose, according to the APA, because:
"homosexuality per se implies no impairment in judgment, stability, reliability, or general social or vocational capabilities".

The American Psychological Association:
"Sexual orientation refers to an enduring pattern of emotional, romantic, and/or sexual attractions to men, women, or both sexes."

All criminals and all bakers are humans. Even were homosexuality to be grouped under the term "paraphilia", along with paedophilia, that would enlighten us nothing about homosexuality, any more than being human indicates a baker's predilection for criminality. Umbrella terms can encompass good, neutral and/or bad things which are independent of each other.

Umbrella term: Paraphilia / Humans
Encompasses: Homosexuality + Paedophilia / Baker + Criminals


Over a 3rd of the references are newspaper or magazine articles, others are not even used in Article A, while some that are make mute points. The article is nothing more than propaganda, designed to convey illusionary legitimacy to unjustified and damaging prejudice. A study quantifying the effects of family rejection of LGB individuals' sexuality upon the characteristics they are often criticized for reinforces this:

Ryan et al. 2009, Pediatrics, 123(1), 346-352:
"Lesbian, gay, and bisexual young adults who reported higher levels of family rejection during adolescence were 8.4 times more likely to report having attempted suicide, 5.9 times more likely to report high levels of depression, 3.4 times more likely to use illegal drugs, and 3.4 times more likely to reporthaving engaged in unprotected sexual intercourse compared with peers (other LGBT people) from families that reported no or low levels of family rejection."

This is one of many studies demonstrating the great hypocrisy of heterosexism. Note that this study is not 25 years, old, is not published in a fringe journal by a known hate group or individual and, unlike Article A's references, a link is provided.

A response to TraditionInAction's Articles B and C can be found here.

1 comment:

  1. You should point out that Edward Fields never cited his sources.