The National Non-Sectarian Council of Pro-Family Activists
Rabbi David Eidensohn - Director - Contact - 1-845-352-7267
(Used by Rabbi Eidensohn's permission on CR's Range)
A Commentary by
Rabbi David Eidensohn
After Republican National Committee Chairman Marc Racicot met with members of the gay Human Rights Campaign, religious right activists warned Mr. Racicot that embracing the gay lobby could cost the Republican Party the next election. This infuriated neo-con personality David Horowitz who attacked the activists in a web column. When senior religious-family personality Bob Knight replied, Mr. Horowitz wrote another article with renewed attacks on the religious right, and Mr. Knight responded to this as well. David, in short, doesn't like the religious right opposing gays politically and feels their meeting with the Republican Party head was wrong. First, let us reply to this charge.
The Republican Party has always identified with the "family" lobby as opposed to the "gay lobby." In very recent times, this is changing. Governor Pataki broke the back of the family lobby in New York State in December 2002 and forced through a Gay Rights Bill. We fear that the national and state Republican Parties that were once on our side, will now forsake us. This has gone on in New York State for two generations. The strongest pro-gay people are those who first made it in political office with the backing of the family lobby. Pataki was once "one of us." D'Amato used to vote our way, and then he changed. Does anyone remember Mayor Giuliani before he became a swinger? Although this has happened at the state level, nothing similar to the meeting Mr. Racicot had with the Human Rights Campaign ever happened nationally. Therefore, the family lobby surely had a right to meet with the leadership of the Republican Party over their very valid political concerns we will soon describe.
David seems to feel that the only reason religious people oppose the Gay Lobby is for religious reasons. He therefore notes that the Gospels does not proscribe homosexuality. In other words, if the Gospels do not mention something, religious people have no reason to object to it. I am Jewish, and the Torah is my bible. Leviticus teaches that homosexuality is an abomination, a ruling held by Orthodox Jews for thousands of years. The Noahide or universal religious laws of the Torah forbid homosexuality, and other religions agree to this. Therefore, the religious proscription of homosexuality is clear and valid, even if people like me fight the Gay Lobby over pure political issues.
Mr. Horowitz says that the real issue is if we want to be tolerant or shun those with whom we disagree. This is wrong. Gay Rights is not just allowing gays to be gays. It is teaching hate for religious people who oppose homosexuality. It is forcing little children to learn about homosexuality and to despise their parents if they are biblical. Whenever gays get their way, huge numbers of people suffer. With indefatigable lobbying often accompanied by terror, the Gay Lobby marches on, and it will not achieve its true goals of dominance over religious and family people until people like me are demonized and maybe criminalized.
Mr. Horowitz's next point: The religious leaders said that if people perceive that the Republicans embrace the Gay agenda they will not vote Republican. This, says Mr. Horowitz, is foolish and mean, because do we want the Democrats to win? This is a good point, but people do not have to vote for the lesser of two evils. Some people will refuse to vote for someone they cannot respect no matter what the consequences. You may feel that this is stupid in real politic terms, but some people don't look at it that way. Furthermore, in real-politic terms, if the Republican Party accepts that it cannot win without the family community, we will win big, even if one election goes south. I do not pretend to know why people threatened not to vote Republican or why they would do such a thing, but there are surely reasons for this that are not mean or stupid.
David Horowitz says furthermore, "the very term 'homosexual agenda' is an expression of intolerance." Everybody has an agenda, and if somebody pushes a homosexual platform or manifesto, why, this is a homosexual agenda. Mr. Horowitz concludes his first article by saying that no group within the conservative movement should monopolize its values. Tell me, David, do you think that those who feel that the conservative movement should be tolerant should monopolize it?
Bob Knight replied to David and David wrote another column on frontpage.com, entitled "Render Unto Caesar." He begins with a swipe at "moral busybodies" quoting C.S. Lewis, that the worst tyrants are "those who torment us for our own good." When the Gay Lobby "torments us for our own good" to stop being "homophobes," are they "moral busybodies?" When Gay Lobby therapists refuse therapy to homosexuals who want to become heterosexuals, is this "tyranny?" Why are the only "moral busybodies" and "tyrants" religious and family people?
David writes that the larger issue is "tolerance and theologically it involves the distinction between the sacred and the profane, between this world and the next." I suppose this means that this world is profane and the gays should do what they want, and religious people should leave politics alone and pray all day. The problem with this is that morality informs secular social constructs. For instance, mental therapists now have a furious debate over whether pedophilia is a disease. Those who pushed therapists to declare that homosexuality is not a disease are now pushing to remove exhibitionism, fetishism, transvestism, voyeurism and sadomasochism from the list of mental diseases. This means that a person with a compulsion to rape his and other people's children would not be able to get help, insurance would not pay for treatment even if he found someone, and research for a cure for the above would be curtailed. We are not talking about someone who wants to be a pedophile. We are talking about a person who wants to respect children, but cannot because he is sick. The radical therapists want to tell this desperate person, "You are not sick, you are bigoted," and let him (and the children) suffer. Thus, morality is quite important when it defines secular science.
David talks about the "sacred and the profane," a phrase rooted in Ezekial 44:23 that should be translated "the sacred and the normative" or the "sacred and the secular." The Greek idea that informed much of the West's aversion to material things informed the wrong translation of the Hebrew word CHOL to be not "secular" but "profane." In Judaism, the world is not "profane" at any level until people do evil things with it. Innately, the process of society is the highest holiness, because "The Way of the World comes before the Torah." Politics is part of the material world created by G-d, and it only becomes "profane" when good and moral people eschew it for praying and retreats and thus allow others who are profane to take over. Politics is "the way of the world" that "comes before the study of the Torah." If we have a society of pedophilia of what value is our study of the Law?
I oppose the Gay Lobby because they want to destroy many important secular institutions that support our society and civilization. The gays have destroyed the health of hundreds of thousands of Americans, not only with their reckless sex (killing someone is immoral) but because they passed HIV Confidentialty Laws. My state, New York, is almost bankrupt, and its budget is probably going to court, because New York must support a huge amount of HIV and AIDS patients. The STDs in New York are doing very well, thank you, because the government cannot reign in the homosexuals and their wanton destruction of health and life. I will never stop protesting the fact that in New York State, HIV and AIDS are not on the official infectious disease list, making it impossible to quarantine and report HIV and AIDS patients, and thus the epidemic will continue to grow and destroy.
Thus, Gays have destroyed medical health with the HIV Confidentiality Laws. Gays have also seized mental health and they define what suffering people may or may not get help. Gays have taken the money for medical research from the majority of Americans who suffer in the millions from cancer and heart diseases, schizophrenia and diabetes, and spent it on diseases that gays prefer. Gays have wrecked the viability of private health insurance and denied coverage to millions of Americans because we cannot control them as they make America sick. Gays have shaken the fiscal stability of the states like New York where gay diseases are paid for with the lives of sick and dying people and the fortunes of the tax payer. The Gay Lobby controls colleges, media, television and government grants. A doctor who correctly predicted the TB epidemic from HIV patients in New York State told me that anyone who teaches in college or takes government money would never predict such a thing or anything adverse to the gay lobby. He was in private practice. The Gay Lobby seized public schools and teach homosexuality to tykes even while they demonize traditional family people. That is why we protest when the Republican Party seeks accommodations with the Gay Lobby.
Does David agree with Dr. Richard Isay that "homophobia is a psychological abnormality. Those afflicted should be quarantined and denied employment?" Dr. Isay is a senior member of the mental health profession, and he is regarding the above quoted in the New York Times. Note that a senior therapist says that anyone who opposes homosexuality is not intellectually or morally wrong, but mentally sick, or insane. This is the Communist approach that anyone who "thinks incorrectly" must be "cured" by the state. This is exactly what the Gay Lobby wants. Not only will the Gay Lobby demonize and criminalize me, it may institutionalize me, so that Dr. Richard Isay can treat me with powerful medications until I realize that homosexuality is just fine. (Quoted in Dr. Satinover's "Homosexuality and the Politics of Truth" - page 182)
Dr. Isay feels that if I am a homosexual but don't want to be, and I suffer terribly from my compulsions to have dangerous sex and cannot be with my wife, I don't deserve treatment. But the very same person who does not want to be homosexual should be treated as a homophobe, quarantined and denied employ! This same Dr. Isay is in charge of the Abuse and Misuse of Psychiatry Committee in the American Psychiatric Association. Religious people are in great danger from the Gay Lobby, and we must fight them politically and every other way.
Now we get to the touchy part. David writes, "Why do I owe Christians an apology, since I have not attacked Christians?" Of course, David, you never attacked Christians. You just attacked the Klu Klux Klan for burning crosses, insinuating that the KKK performed as Christians rather than bigots.
David writes, "To accuse a Jew of attacking Christians is a serious matter and goes to the heart of the political problem that 'social conservatives' often create for themselves when they intrude religion into the political sphere." Just because David has a name like Horowitz does not mean that attacking his published views is accusing a Jew. To bring this up is not necessary and is what somebody does when they are in trouble in a debate. When Bob Knight is beating your brains out with cool facts that is what some people need to do.
David asks, "Why is religion even an issue in what should be entirely a political discussion?" However, the religious people went to the meeting to discuss politics, not religion. And if someone does approach a politician about a purely religious issue, what is wrong with that? Today, the government controls everything, and determines what is an acceptable religion regarding income tax exemption, and it will soon be involved in "incitement" when people read the bible. Religious people surely have to enter politics to protect themselves.
In most of the Western world, clergy may not preach against homosexuality on pain of prison. Quoting the bible when you mean it to prove that homosexuality is "an abomination" is a hate crime in Europe, Canada, and possibly in Pennsylvania. The Gay Lobby wants to demonize and even criminalize religion. (Several articles at gendercentral.com provide the texts and analyses of Gay Rights Laws and their threat to religious people.) Is that reason enough to meet with politicians and tell them our views?
The great confusion revealed in David's article is not entirely his fault, but is the fault of the Christian community that insists on fighting the gays under the banner of the bible. This is exactly what the gays want. This is why we are losing, and this is why we must change our focus. A prominent Christian clergyman told me that I was right, and that churches use the gay issue to raise money for "more important things." If the gays can close our churches, what will happen to the "more important things?" A religious Catholic founded the Right to Life movement as a secular organization and it succeeded. So must the family lobby form a secular organization to fight the Gay Lobby.
David concludes, "Knightâ's statement is prejudice dressed up as a moral position. It presumes that homosexuality is a choice, while all evidence points to the contrary. The conversion movements have been miserable failures." David, I have spent my life working with the refuse of family court, with people that therapists told me, "Rabbi, he is all yours," and yet some sick people get better. Don't condemn people to any permanent compulsion, because the facts are otherwise. In his "Homosexuality and the Politics of Truth (page 186)," Dr. Jeffrey Satinover, M.D. quotes fifteen studies of the past century by secular and even homosexual therapists who cured over half of their homosexual patients. Hadfield reported a 77 percent recovery rate. Many patients involved were studied for over thirty years to see if they relapsed. Dr. Joseph Spitzer of Columbia has a very recent study that some people can change from homosexuality to heterosexuality. Other therapists tell me of their success with homosexual patients who change. It surely is not easy, and perhaps not for everyone. But sometimes it works.
Genes create sexual identity, behavior, arousal and fantasy, but genes are also modified by human reactions and behavior. See Time Magazine May 25, 2003 web article by Matt Ridley entitled "Nature and Nurture." The latest scientific findings are that genes are updated by our response to them. That is, we get powerful stimulants and even compulsions from genes, but if we react to them to confound their force, they update and accommodate our behavior. Thus, nature is modified by nurture. Genes inform our sexual inclinations, but we can confront our inclinations and perhaps change them.
David concludes his second article by claiming that making homosexuality a moral issue and then imposing upon politics approaches the totalitarian state. Gibbons said, "A civilization is its religion." Voltaire said, "If there is no god we would have to invent him." Philosophers from Socrates, Plato and Aristotle until Voltaire and of course modern philosophic icons Heidegger and Sartre believed that morality must control society, and people cannot be allowed to do what they want. This extremely dangerous idea has led to Communism and Nazism, and so in our country we don't impose religion or morality as they believed. This does not mean, however, that the secular society is not influenced by morality, and we surely hope that religious thought is as moral as any other. We accept in America, as did all of the philosophers, that morality must inform social construct, but we do it in such a way as to tolerate minorities. This does not mean that we allow a minority like the gays to take over the country and demonize religious people. Nor does it mean that we must sacrifice the most important social institutions, like heterosexual marriage, medical and health policy for the Gay Lobby.
President Bush has appointed open homosexuals to very important positions, but to my knowledge has not appointed any religious-right people. The senior Bush had one religious-right person and fired him. New York Time's columnist Kristoff wrote that although there are forty million Evangelicals in America, he has never seen one working in the major media. Is this tolerance? Is this inclusiveness? Who is in the closet?
There is a serious question if religions that teach the biblical proscription of homosexuality will lose their tax exemptions and government programs if they are no longer within the commonality of American belief and violate the intent of civil rights laws. A bill, A1118 in the New York Assembly, would remove the status of a legal school from any parochial school that refuses to teach children that homosexuality and cross-dressing is acceptable. A parent who sends a child to an illegal school is guilty of a crime and could be jailed. These political issues threaten the freedom of religion of tens of millions of Americans. How sad that in our moment of distress, the neo-cons who protect liberty in our country now turn against us, using the weapons of radical lies. It is not entirely their fault. Is it partially the fault of those who use the gay issue as an excuse to bolster the coffers of their religious organizations, to the delight of the Gay Lobby and the anguish of the Family Lobby.
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