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'BORN GAY' IS DEAD

'BORN GAY' IS DEAD
Dr Lisa Nolland spells out why the idea is wrong and must now be consigned to the cemetery of thought

By Dr Lisa Nolland
Evangelicals Now
July 2018

Both the church and society have long struggled with the issue of homosexuality.

Is it a crime? Is it an illness? Is it a sin? Is it simply a normal variant of human sexuality? And what difference do the answers to these questions make in the 'real world'?

A brief recent history

In the 1960s, American singer Anita Bryant campaigned against homosexuality, saying that gay people are made, not born, and that they had to recruit youngsters in order to maintain their numbers. This frightened the heterosexual community, and gay people in turn felt under threat.

Then, in 1973, the American Psychiatric Association was pressurised by gay activists into pronouncing that homosexuality was not an illness, but a normal variant of sexuality. This decision is widely recognised as having been political rather than scientific, but it laid the foundation for the decisive game-changer that was to come.

A game-changer

In 1989 two brilliant Harvard graduates, Kirk and Madsen, wrote the seminal After the Ball, which argued that 'for all practical purposes, gays should be considered to have been "born gay"-- even though sexual orientation, for most humans, seems to be the product of a complex interaction between innate predispositions and environmental factors during childhood...'

The brilliance of this strategy was twofold: by arguing for 'born gay', gays were able to qualify for special treatment as a vulnerable 'minority group'. Also this strategy elicited much more sympathy for them in the public domain because 'it's not their fault'. That public sympathy remains to this day, and 'orientation' is considered to be immutable.

Ignoring inconvenient truth

In 2007, Professor Michael King made a submission to the Church of England on behalf of the Royal College of Psychiatrists. Embarrassingly for the College, the document was criticised by CORE Issues Trust as having made no reference to twin studies, which had been central to the scientific discussion for several years.

These studies showed that if one identical twin grew up to be gay, the other usually did not. The inescapable conclusion was that, since both had the same genes and hormonal experiences in the womb, the difference in sexuality must be accounted for mainly by their different experiences and perceptions during early childhood. Gay people were not born that way.

All of this was absent from the College's submission. Missing too was any reference to a major Danish study, published just the previous year, which found 'evidence that childhood family experiences are important determinants of heterosexual and homosexual marriage decisions in adulthood.'

The Royal College's submission claimed that:
• Causation was 'biological', so a person is born gay
• One's sexual orientation is 'fundamental' and thus immutable
• If one tries to change one's sexuality (by therapy) one is liable to be harmed and cited several scientific studies to support these claims.

Importance of postnatal

Unfortunately, the studies didn't support their arguments and, when challenged, the College quietly issued a new position statement in 2014 which says: 'Sexual orientation is determined by a combination of biological and postnatal environmental factors' -- exactly what Kirk and Madsen had recognised but concealed 25 years previously. The College also now acknowledged that 'it is not the case that sexual orientation is immutable or might not vary to some extent during a person's life'.

The word 'postnatal' in the above affirmation is very important because it refers to events that happen after birth -- so the person was not born that way. Yet Professor King continues in denial: 'It is deeply misleading to state that people are not "born gay" and that their sexual desires can change.' He cites inter alia the work of the respected lesbian scholar Lisa Diamond.

Out of the bag

Unfortunately for Professor King, Lisa Diamond's research cannot be enlisted to support his claims. In July 2015, the New Scientist published her remarkable article, 'Sexuality is fluid -- it's time to get past "born this way".' She states: '... whenever someone comes up with a tag line like 'we're born that way', they ultimately do everyone involved a disservice. It is time to just take the whole idea of sexuality as immutable, the born this way notion, and just come to a consensus as scientists and as legal scholars that we need to put it to rest. It's unscientific ... it's totally irrelevant and just politics.'

This amounts to a complete unravelling of the strategy of Kirk and Madsen. But 'born gay' has done its work: the general public has been duped. Now they need to hear: 'You were misled. "Born gay" is dead and was never true!'

This does not of itself mean that therapy can help every individual to change their sexual 'orientation'. It does, however, open up that possibility, which gay activists have long sought to close down.

In California, now, the most draconian legislation to date is being promoted; will the church even realize what is happening and respond?

However, brave clients who have benefited from therapy are beginning to make their voices heard. CORE Issues Trust's excellent (but banned!) DVD, Voices of the Silenced, is being well received. One can purchase it here: https://www.core-issues.org/vos-dvd

May I suggest ordering a copy and seeing for yourself? If you think it beneficial, do pass it on to your church team.

Truncated responses

Some other groups are unwilling to explore the possibilities of change for those who have unwanted Same Sex Attraction (SSA). In my opinion, they are unable to offer a full analysis of what is going on, or engage with how best to respond.

Though individuals are undoubtedly helped through these ministries -- and God bless all the good they do -- the real threat is a pernicious ideology: Cultural Marxism, with its determination to stamp out 'bourgeois' values, and its totalitarian instincts. LGBT issues are but one aspect of what is far more encompassing, and which is rapidly enveloping the West, even the church.

Indeed, there appears to be little awareness that basic freedom is being destroyed, professionals forced to spout the 'Party Line', and millions of children force-fed a diet of LGBT rights. And on and on...

Getting on the front foot

Apart from exposing 'born gay' fraud and promoting the value of ministries like CORE, I would like to leave my readers with three comments.

First: Christians must fully re-engage with both Genesis and Jesus across issues of human sexuality. Who is immune from the damage of sexual brokenness? But here, to note, homosexuality is not an equivalent to heterosexuality: The former is post-Fall while heterosexuality is God-made and God-given. Our very bodies (with a tiny exception for intersex) are heterosexually designed. There is no such thing as a gay body!

Secondly, why has one narrative of SSA been privileged above others and allowed to dominate and silence them? How is that fair? Sadly, those with different stories are ignored and tacitly marginalised. A few years ago, an ex-gay friend preached at an evangelical church; afterwards he was told by half a dozen or so individuals (separately) that they too had the T-shirt but few knew. It was too risky to 'come out' in that way. Voices of the Silenced allows those who have been helped by therapy to speak. Please listen to them: I think they count too.

Thirdly, a dear friend has long struggled with unwanted SSA. He could locate no apparent reason why he had been cursed with it. Recently, though, there has been progress. Now with his third therapist, lights are coming on. But this would not have happened had he accepted he was 'born gay' or must be gay but celibate. In fact, his SSA is but the symptom of profound trauma, which God is beginning to heal.

So 'born gay'-- and all that is claimed along with it -- must go!

Lisa Nolland is an author, speaker, and web consultant for Anglican Mainstream for whom she convenes the Marriage, Sex and Culture Group.

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