Another Double Standard

Last time I commented on the ridiculousness of the double standards that exist in our country, thanks in no small part to our elected officials and (often unelected) judges. Here’s another excellent example for you. New Jersey, California and Washington, D.C. all have laws which ban state-licensed counselors from talking to minors about changing their sexual orientation. In New Jersey and California the law also states that counselors cannot talk to minors about changing their sexual behavior or trying to minimize feelings of attraction toward members of the same sex. This means, according to reporter Jamie Dean in an article published in the May 16 issue of WORLD, that the laws prohibit “any counseling that suggests it’s possible for a person to change–or even reduce–same-sex attractions.” Furthermore, Dean reports, at least eighteen other states have considered such bans. Worse, the Obama administration has indicated that it would support federal legislation on this matter if Congress were to act.

Why is this so problematic? Consider, please, what these bans do not prevent–namely, counselors talking to minors about changing their bodies if they want to switch to another gender (like Bruce Jenner). If a young person feels a sexual attraction to someone of the same gender, and does not like it, counseling would be a logical next step in most people’s minds. Yet, according to these laws, the counselor could not discuss this with the young person. Apparently it is not okay for a young person to want to change the fact that he or she feels a sexual attraction to someone of the same sex, but it is perfectly fine to discuss with that young person changing their body and almost every other aspect of their life in order to assume an identity as a member of the other gender. In other words, state legislatures are giving their seal of approval on what kinds of feelings are perfectly acceptable (such as changing one’s gender) and those which are not (such as trying to overcome unwanted sexual attraction).

What we are seeing here is not only a horrible double standard but a frightening invasion by government into the most private and personal areas of personal lives. Here the media and many in our nation have been celebrating Bruce Jenner’s decision to abandon his life as a male and switch to a female, and counselors are more than welcome to assist young people in exploring these feelings and desires, but when a young man does not like the fact that he sometimes feels attracted to other men (or a young women does not like that she sometimes feels attracted to other women), young people cannot discuss those feelings with the very people who, theoretically, should be most equipped to help them deal with these feelings. The government, then, is deciding what feelings are okay and what feelings are not okay. It is perfectly okay to want to switch genders and it is perfectly okay to be attracted to people of the same gender, but it is not okay to not like it when those same-sex feelings pop up. The pendulum has swung far in the other direction! Not too long ago there was considerable debate over whether or not a person who felt same-sex attractions was mentally stable. It was even less long ago that someone who felt same-sex attractions would have been extremely reluctant to speak about, much less act on, those feelings. There has been a shift toward accepting those who feel that same-sex attraction, embracing them, and helping them accept those feelings. Now, instead, a person who feels a same-sex attraction and does not like it is not allowed to talk about it, is discouraged from feeling that way, and is told that trying to deny that feeling is wrong. When you see how far we have come in this area it is not really all that difficult to envision the lunacy I described in the last post that will come from giving human-like rights to chimpanzees. The government cannot tell anyone what to think, and it ought not try.

Funny, isn’t it, that our culture seems to encourage people to think whatever they want, to eschew any ideas of right and wrong and pursue whatever makes them feel good–yet when something is making them feel bad, that the culture thinks is just fine and should make them feel good, all of a sudden there is a wrong! This is just the kind of foolishness that stems from man messing with what God has already decided; we just make a big mess of everything.

The Absurdity of Human-Style Rights

It is irritating, frustrating and just plain ridiculous to see the double standards that exist around us, particularly within the legal realm, when it comes to comparing the positions advocated by those on the so-called liberal left and those more often lumped into the conservative right. The examples are abundant; frankly, one would have to try harder not to see them than to see them. In reading through a news magazine recently, for instance, I read a blurb about a judge in New York who granted “human-style rights” to a couple of chimpanzees kept by Stony Brook University. Barbara Jaffe, the judge, granted habeas corpus to the chimps and ruled that the school had to provide “legally sufficient reason” to keep them in in captivity. This was after, by the way, three other courts in New York declined to grant the petition of the Nonhuman Rights Project. If monkeys now can be given the same rights that humans can, what possible reason could there be for keeping them locked up? After all, the only legally-permissible reason to keep a human incarcerated is as a consequence for breaking the law. How might the good humans at Stony Brook demonstrate that these chimps have broken the law? What laws could they possibly break? Oh, that’s right–we do not have any laws for primates, because thus far our legislators and judges have confined themselves to making laws for human beings! You may accuse me of screaming that the sky is falling, but beware: it will not take long, if Judge Jaffe’s ruling stands, before the Nonhuman Rights Project or some other equally inane group will argue that humans cannot make laws for chimpanzees because we do not fully understand them. The next step will be the argument that either there can be no laws for chimpanzees or that chimpanzees must be able to make their own laws. If chimpanzees get to make their own laws, guess what we will have? Darwin’s survival of the fittest.

It will not be long, either, before these human-style rights will be extended to other animals, too. Your pet dog or cat? Sorry, got to let them go. Unless you can come up with some “legally sufficient reason” to keep Fido and Fluffy they will have to be released and take care of themselves. Never mind that you were providing food, shelter and medical care for the little critter, there’s just no good reason why you should be allowed to keep them locked up. Do you have a bird, hamster,turtle or goldfish? Sorry…they’ll have to released too. Do you own horses? Forget it. There can be no legally compelling reason to force an animal to let you sit on its back while you ride it wherever you dictate, whether for pleasure or in racing around barrels or between poles. Do you have cows? Turn them loose. How could you possibly argue in a court of law, with a straight face, that you should be allowed to squeeze or otherwise manipulate the teats of a cow in order to collect the milk she has produced? We will just have to figure another way to get milk, cream and cheese–or develop some substitute that contains no animal products. In fact, we will all have to become vegetarians because how could we be so arrogant as to believe that our own nourishment is a legally sufficient reason for an animal to be put to death?

This is all quite absurd, I know, and I surely hope we will never get anywhere near this as reality. Unfortunately, though, too many people–like Barbara Jaffe–fail to consider what the ramifications of their little decisions will be when taken to their logical conclusions. It’s Hercules and Leo today (the Stony Brook chimps) but it’s the entire animal kingdom tomorrow. More later; I think I will go grill a burger and have a milkshake while I still can.

Bruce Jenner Is Not A Hero

This is articulate and thoughtfully written. I could not have said it better myself.

Illuminating Truth

I generally try to steer clear of controversial issues on here. Most are so deeply embedded in presuppositions that writing about them generally just generates more anger and frustration than meaningful discussion. However, I never want to shy away from speaking something that needs to be said even if I know it is not something people want to hear. So, I want to talk about Bruce Jenner.

Today, Bruce Jenner appeared on the cover of Vanity Fair, dressed as a woman and introducing himself to the world as “Caitlyn Jenner.” You see, he has decided that he is a woman and that by saying it and probably some very extensive surgery, he can make it so. In today’s world, we think gender is something we get to choose, like our career path or our clothes. So, people across the nation have lauded him as a hero. Certainly, this is the…

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