Reply to Comments on Last Week’s Essay
Animals: Tradition - Philosophy - Religion Article from


Stephen Kaufman, M.D., Christian Vegetarian Association (CVA)

Reply to Comments on Last Week’s Essay

I appreciate feedback, and last week’s essay got more than usual. Among those who raised objections, a few disagreed with my assertion that homosexuality is not a lifestyle choice. They said that homosexuals can choose to have a heterosexual partner or be abstinent.

Though questions regarding homosexuality were not central to the essay, the number of comments encourages a response. I think they made a good point, and I would rephrase my assertion by saying that being homosexual is not a choice. Whether sexual attraction is genetic, environmental, or both, it isn’t chosen and, as best I can tell from reading the literature, it can’t be changed. We have much more control over our sexual activity, though from all that I have learned and heard, homosexuals in monogamous heterosexual relationships generally find the relationships very unsatisfying, as do their partners, in part because physical intimacy is very important to most people.

By the same token, abstinence for many of us would be a substantial cross to bear. One person said that God doesn’t give us more than we can handle, yet such a view would not account for the high suicide rate among homosexual youths. As best I can tell, their burden is generally not from their homosexual desires, which feel very natural to them, but from society’s condemnation of their homosexuality.

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