A 12 year-old girl seeks answers about LGBT ideology

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steve
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A 12 year-old girl seeks answers about LGBT ideology

Post by steve » Sun Mar 27, 2022 5:35 pm

This is correspondence that I received and answered yesterday. Though the question was that of a twelve-year-old, I did not answer at the level of someone that age, but to her father, leaving it to him to communicate the concepts at her level, depending on the maturity and intelligence of his own daughter.

A 12 year-old girl seeks answers about LGBT ideology
Steve,

My daughter is 12 years old and beginning to question things. She became upset and asked why I wouldn’t want her consuming certain Disney content. I showed her a video that explained how Disney is using their media to push a pro-LGBTQ agenda. It would seem that they are not only saying homosexual behavior is okay, but beginning to celebrate it. She wasn’t satisfied and she wrote me the following note:

Dad, I personally don’t think that gay people are bad. I understand that the Bible says that it’s wrong and I get where you’re coming from with that, but, for one, I don’t agree. For two, I don’t understand why the Bible says it’s wrong. Why does it matter, since it’s not hurting anyone? So when the topic occasionally comes up about you not wanting me to watch certain family-friendly things that aren’t hurting me at all, just because they have anything to do with supporting gay people, I just don’t agree.

Can you help me with a response to her?

Brian


Hi Brian,

I don’t know how precocious your daughter is, at age 12, and cannot therefore respond directly to her at her level. What I write below will be how I would communicate with a very intelligent young adult. I know there may be some things I say that go over the head of a twelve-year-old, and some of the examples I provide may not even be age-appropriate.

However, since you are asking for help in answering her points, I write for you, as an adult, and leave it to you to process the ideas and to express them in age-appropriate language to your daughter. There may be too much here to discuss in one conversation. The points may need to form a curriculum to be discussed over a period of days or weeks. In any case, the following points must eventually be made clear to her:

We don’t think gay people are bad either—at least not worse than straight people. The value and goodness of a person are not to be judged by what kind of temptations he or she may experience involuntarily. Temptation is not the same as sin. We are only responsible for our actual choices. A decision to fornicate or to remain celibate is in our control, and bears moral responsibility. All people are, in some measure, controlled by a confused, self-pleasing drive, and face temptations to do what is not best—and even foolishly engage in behaviors that are self-destructive, either physically or morally. This is no more the case for gay people than for any others. However, we are interested in defining right and wrong choices so that damage from harmful choices can be prevented. If we had a grandfather who was no longer able to drive safely, we might strongly urge him, for his own sake and the safety of others, to stop driving altogether. No matter how inconvenienced he might be by giving up his keys, or how angry he might become at us for saying so, we are speaking to him out of love for his safety. We would not be saying that the old man is a bad man—only that he is engaged in an activity that he should give up.

Gay people are attracted sexually to people of their own sex, just as straight people are attracted to the opposite sex. They cannot help this, and no one should blame them for this. There are numerous things that I am attracted to that might harm me or be morally wrong for me to do, so we are all pretty much in the same boat. No one is evil because of the temptations they face, or the desires that assail them, but only for their actions. If gay sex is immoral, it is not the temptation, but the actual choice to fornicate that is to be so regarded.

Modern science has shown that the human brain is not fully developed until about age 25. Prior to that, it is being disproportionately shaped by various influences. Through most of history, the primary influence on young minds came from parents—the safest source, since parents are the only people who care enough for the child’s well-being and development to willingly die for them, if necessary. School, friends, entertainment and social media, have now come to assume the primary role in shaping the minds of young people. You may think that the things you watch do you no harm, but your very rejection of parental instruction in favor of accepting LGBT values proves you are mistaken about that, and lacking in self-awareness. Sources seeking to undermine your parents’ influence have put those ideas into your head—you did not come up with them on your own.

None of those influences represent sources that care very much for your individual or social well-being. Increasingly, all of these sources have a compelling interest in shaping children’s minds to conform to certain political and social norms, which benefit the people in power, but not the child or the future adult that the child will become. The only person who continues to care about, and make sacrifices for the child’s long-term happiness and well-being remains the caring parent.

Parents have lived twice or three times longer than their children, having fully-developed brains, experience, and no less intelligence than their children. Because they care more than anyone else does for their own children, they have a legitimate, wary interest in monitoring whatever outside influences may be invading and shaping their children’s minds. Children have no frame of reference, beyond their own brief lifetimes and experiences, from which to evaluate larger philosophical questions. The parents have the perspective of a much larger segment of historical time, both from their own lived experience and the historical study in which they have had occasion to engage. They don’t know everything, but they know far more than the child. Though she may not know as much about using an iPhone, even an uneducated mom knows more about life than does her internet-savvy, teenaged daughter. Unfortunately, the daughter, being exposed to immense and unmanageable amounts of information online may gain the false impression of possessing great knowledge and wisdom. The parent, who knows how to manage his or her life, earn a living, balance a checkbook, and meet the needs of children knows far more about reality than the son who can kill five hundred cyborgs in a videogame.

Let’s consider the present matter of how one should evaluate normative sexual behavior.

If we say we do not agree with what the scripture says, we are necessarily making several assumptions (whether or not we are aware of them) that require demonstration before they can safely be accepted:

Assumption 1) That, if God exists, He is no wiser than I am;

Assumption 2) That, if God created me, I have no moral obligation to find out what He wants and to do it.

Assumption 3) That God has no good reasons for what He commands.

Assumption 4) That the Bible is not a revelation from God.

Assumption 5) That it is unloving to tell people the truth that they need to know for their own good.

Assumption 6) That it is better and safer to trust the fluctuating morals of a society that has no moral foundations than to do what God tells us to do.



Let’s consider each of these, since together, if correct, they make an air-tight case against the Christian position. However, we must first demonstrate the validity of these assumptions. In order for the last point to be valid, the previous points must be valid. Are they?


Assumption #1: If God exists, He is no wiser than I am;

I am pretty sure that no one really believes this. Many people act as if it is true, but they are living with the cognitive dissonance of trying to live as if something is true which they know to be absurd. If Someone created the universe, which functions in ways that even the most erudite engineers and mathematicians still have not fathomed, and have not yet been able to explain (e.g., the existence of natural laws, the fine-tuning of the universe and earth to accommodate carbon-based life, the emergence of actual life and consciousness from unliving matter and energy, etc.), then that Being is smarter than all of us. Every rational being realizes that it would be ridiculous to proclaim that he or she is wiser than God. Their only escape from that absurdity is to make the equally absurd pronouncement that there is no God.

This, however, is the most indefensible of all propositions known to man. Only a tiny percentage of the most irrational people who have ever lived have been willing to make this claim. Most thinking people already know that they cannot prove a universal negative. Today, most so-called “atheists” have backed away from the position that insists “There is no God,” and adopted the more gutless assertion, “I don’t personally believe in a God.” Of course, this leaves them, logically, in the unenviable position of saying that, since they do not know everything, there might yet be a God that they have never had the good sense to believe in. Only pride causes one to insist on the irrational position that there is no God, because the acknowledging of God’s existence forces the belief that someone in the universe may just be a whole lot smarter than all of us.


Assumption #2: If God created me, I have no moral obligation to find out what He wants and to do it;

One who creates something, possesses the natural right to decide what shall be done with his creation. This is why artists, song-writers, poets and authors receive copyrights to their compositions, and inventors receive patents. What they create belongs to them. This is known to all by natural intuition. If someone wished to deny this principle, they would show themselves a hypocrite as soon a someone else stole or destroyed a picture or sculpture that they had laboriously created and of which they were quite proud. If our existence is the result of mindless chemical transactions, undirected by any purposeful Agent, then we may imagine that we own ourselves (or, more reasonably, our parents own us, since they directly “created” us). But if we are the masterpiece of a supreme Intelligence, then we are rightfully owned by that Agent, and obliged to fulfill the purpose for which we were designed.

If being created by a Supreme Being for a purpose (no one creates anything without a purpose) does not provide the basis for meaning and moral foundations, then there remains nothing else to do so. We can say that killing babies is wrong—but who says it is wrong? Society? Well, very recently, our society said it was morally wrong to walk outside without wearing a surgical mask. Intelligent people knew this was nonsense, but it was still touted as a moral obligation by those who have no basis for their moral code other than, “It is widely assumed that this is right.”

If society tells us something is right or wrong, we have every reason to ask, “Why? On the basis of what universal principle of right and wrong is this particular thing immoral?” If one cannot find the basis of morality in the will of our Creator, then everything is ultimately arbitrary. To say something is illegal or legal tells us nothing about whether it is moral. In some states, it is legal to deliver a live and healthy baby, and then to murder it because the parents don’t want it. It was legal, in Nazi Germany, to kill innocent Jews, Gypsies, and Down-Syndrome patients. Every rational person knows these are evil actions, though, unless God is the one who forbade them, there is no basis for imposing these judgments on anyone. We can argue, “But that’s just wrong!” However, if we are not able to trace our revulsion back to the authority of our Creator, we are saying nothing more valid than simply saying, “I don’t like that kind of thing.”


Assumption #3: God has no good reasons for what He commands

If God tells us not to torture and kill innocent children, we immediately recognize the wisdom of these moral instructions. If the manufacturer of our car tells us not to put water into the gas tank, it is equally obvious why such a rule should be observed. However, if the manufacturer tells us not to use any other engine oil than that of a certain brand, it is not at all clear to us why this is required. Nonetheless, we assume the manufacture knows more about our car than we do, and may foresee certain damage to the machine that we cannot foresee. It is wise for us to believe this.

When God made us, he made us much more complex and delicate than a car engine. We see this, for example, in how a tiny particle of cyanide, when ingested, can completely destroy our lives. But our fragility is not merely physical. God made us to function a certain way in the spiritual and psychological spheres as well. This is the realm of moral behavior. We can see how one’s emotional/spiritual life can be damaged by the slightest unkindness suffered, or by allowing our anger to go unchecked. The failure to maintain the moral and psychological life can be every bit as life-destroying as can be the ingesting of poison in the physical realm. We can see how the mismanagement of spiritual aspects of our lives can be damaging, and why God would instruct us in how to regulate them, when, for example, we allow ourselves to become angry enough to kill another person, greedy enough to rob another person, lustful enough to sexually abuse another person, or depressed enough to kill ourselves. Maintaining the spiritual/moral aspects of our lives requires the following of God’s instructions as much as following the “owner’s manual” of our car manufacturer is required to avoid prematurely destroying the vehicle.

Our own Designer and Manufacturer has given us instructions about the management of the strongest emotional aspect of our lives—our sexuality. We can immediately recognize that the failure to manage one’s sexual drive can bring great destruction when, for example, a man becomes a serial rapist, a sado-masochist, a child pornographer, or an unfaithful spouse. However, we might not as easily see the rationale for forbidding other sexual misconduct, like same-sex marriage or trangenderism, which appear to be victimless. Bestiality also could be said to be victimless, but we still recognize it as unnatural, although a tiny minority of humans seem to be tempted in that area. The percentage of people who are same-sex attracted has also historically been very small. But even if, through the feverish recruitment efforts of LGBT+ activism, the majority of people eventually came to be tempted in these areas, this would not determine the moral rightness or wrongness of the behaviors. Ultimate reality is not determined by a majority vote. Even among straight people, the majority of adults, in their lifetimes, generally will find themselves tempted toward partners who are not morally available to them (e.g., someone else’s wife or husband). Sexual attraction does not determine moral norms.

The fact that two parties may consent to sin sexually together does not make their actions a victimless act. If their actions are adulterous, they harm the innocent husbands and wives of the perpetrators. Since such activity generally leads to divorce, it does great harm to children as well. Statistically, the children of divorced homes are at enormously greater risk than the general public for antisocial problems like drug and alcohol abuse, criminal and gang involvement, depression, promiscuity, prostitution, and suicide. The rejection of God’s design for sexual behavior by a society or an individual cannot be said to be harmless, and many have been victims of another’s sexual misconduct—to say nothing of damage to the spiritual life and soul of the offender.

To say that gay lifestyles and transgenderism harm no one is to make a claim that no one can prove to be true. The suicide rates among gay, lesbian and trans people would be one measure of whether such sexual choices are generally healthy or harmful. Statistically, gay men attempt suicide at a rate six times greater than the general population. In statistics taken from 2015, within one year, one trans person in three attempted suicide (that is a 33% rate)—about twice the already bloated rate of suicide among gay and lesbians. This is a much studied phenomenon, and has often been attributed to bad treatment such people receive from the straight world—gratuitously blamed on society’s historic Christian values.

However, there remains little to no Christian influence in public or higher education, in the arts, in entertainment, in law, or in the sentiments of the dominant culture—and this has been increasingly the case for many decades. In this century, there has been no demographic group more coddled, defended, celebrated and feted by our mainstream culture than the LGBT+ groups.

“Trans rights,” pertaining to less than 1% of the population, now have eclipsed and undermined “women’s rights,” which affect over 50% of the population. Enforcement of trans rights has become so dangerous to women that many women have now been raped in public restrooms and women's prisons by men pretending to be women. There are today fewer safe places for women than ever before in our society. Trans persons' imagined rights to participate in women's sports have eliminated the rights of women to complete and win against others who share their body types. There is no rational reason behind this—other than to say when society rejects God's norms, it no longer has the sanity to recognize even the most basic realities known to every society in history.

All this is a political phenomenon—based neither upon science or morality. LGBT+ identity has received more legal and cultural support and protection than has any other category of humans in western civilization. It is hard to believe that their depression or angst is caused by being treated worse than those of other minority categories, or that cultural reactions to their behavior account for their inner torment.

It is more likely that this disproportionate suicide rate is due more to the inward dysphoria, or confusion, with which these people are struggling. There is an inward struggle between the biological reality and the psychological kit with which these people seek to cope on a daily basis. This was formally recognized by the psychiatric community to be a form of "mental illness" until political and social pressures were placed upon the APA to change their categorizations. No new scientific data informed this change, only politics.

For many seeking to cope with this condition, the conflict between their biological selves and their psychological selves must be unbearable. Society now tells them that all is well with their souls, but they must be failing to be convinced by the voices of vacuous political correctness. People who feel at peace with themselves don't kill themselves. This is not how God created people to be. To say that departing from God’s plan for human sexuality has no victims is to reveal a naïve ignorance of reality and an unjustified confidence in one’s own uninformed opinions.


Assumption #4: The Bible is not a revelation from God.

This is the default assumption of those who know little about the subject. They either have not investigated the scientific, archaeological and historical evidence (most people have not), or they have done so without an objectivity that seeks the truth. There have always been those who do not like what the Bible teaches, and have unsuccessfully sought to disprove it. Those who have studied this objectively have come to realize that enormous confirmatory evidences exist supporting the historical accuracy of the Bible, and that absolutely zero evidence has turned up demonstrating the Bible to be less than what it claims to be.

The fact that Jesus rose from the dead (one of the most demonstrable facts of ancient history by regular investigatory methods) indicates that the confidence that Christians have historically placed in Him, as the Son and Revealer of God, is more than warranted. The fact that He also confirmed the biblical sexual norms (Matt.19:1-9) provides the very best reason to accept them. There is no rational reason for rejecting them—nor any other teaching of scripture—as the revealed will of God.


Assumption #5: It is unloving to tell people the truth that they need to know for their own good.

This is the attitude of our culture today in many areas. If a person is morbidly obese, it is no longer considered loving for those who care about her to point out that this is a dangerous condition that will shorten her life by decades, and compromise her quality of life in the meantime. Pointing out such things is now called “body-shaming.” Yet, those who practice dangerous lifestyle practices—like drinking and driving, the recreational use of fentanyl, or playing Russian Roulette on weekends—often have people in their lives who apparently care more about their well-being than they do. If someone gets a rush out of reckless driving, he is not likely to appreciate the friend who, out of concern for his survival, urges him to modify his habits.

Of course, this disapproval is what most of his friends fear, and is the reason that they say nothing to him. They don’t love him enough to risk his anger toward them. In other words, they love themselves more than they love him.

Those who care the most about another’s dangerous behavior are usually that person’s parents. They usually do love their children enough to confront them for their own good. For their love of their children they often receive back their children’s hatred toward them. This is painful to the parent, or the concerned friend—but this pain is what love is willing to risk. Those who will not tell someone the truth that could save his life or soul are cowards who wish to preserve their own emotions against rejection, rather than potentially to save another’s life. God—like the ultimate parent or best friend—loves us all more than He loves Himself, which is why He risks our rejection of Him by confronting the behaviors that will destroy us—and even laid down His life in order to do so.


Assumption #6: It is better and safer to trust the fluctuating morals of a society that has no moral foundations than to do what God tells us to do.

When one says either that a thing is right or that it is wrong, that person is expressing a moral conviction. “Morality” is simply the category of distinguishing between things that are right and things that are not right. Those who express a moral conviction are not merely saying, “I don’t like this behavior,” but that such behavior is actually right or wrong for people in general. They are, of necessity, appealing to some general and universal standard, not a mere subjective judgment. Even when they say to someone, “You shouldn’t judge another person's behavior," they are appealing to a moral standard (viz., that judging other people's behavior is wrong) and they are inconsistently judging the other person's behavior by that standard.

If something is morally wrong, it is wrong for everybody. If it is a moral obligation, then it is an obligation for everybody. It may not be within our power to force others’ compliance (and we might not have any interest in doing so), but we can still, with confidence, say, “This is not morally right.” I may not be able to stop a man from cheating on his wife, but he cannot stop me from saying he is doing an immoral thing in doing so—and I, not he, will have truth on my side.

But a moral code must have an immovable foundation—or else the dismembering of three-year-old girls, which is deemed morally wrong by most today, might be accepted as morally right by a future moral standard. True morality is defined by God, the Creator of everything, who has given us instructions on the proper use of the world and of the human machine that He has designed. He is not beholden to the shifting opinions of benighted humans, and so His moral code never changes. If we do not accept His moral instructions, we must never say that anything is wrong in another’s actions—even Hitler’s. Who, if not God, has the absolute right to tell anyone else what they should or should not do? Governments can make certain actions illegal, but they cannot make them morally right or wrong. That is why killing an innocent baby, or divorcing a faithful wife, and abandoning one’s children, can be legal in many states—but still morally wrong.

Our society has attempted to escape God’s rule. They irrationally deny His existence, the Bible’s veracity, and the rightness of His moral instructions. Once we have no God dictating morals, whom shall we pick to decide them for us—Politicians? —Perverts? —Corporations? —People on social media, or movie makers, whose own personal lives are chaotic and out of order? Why listen to any of them?

Our society has abandoned God’s morality and has no solid basis upon which to build another. For example, they have rejected God’s definition of marriage—but have provided no definition to replace it. They have rejected God’s definition of “woman,” but no one can enunciate a new definition of the term. They don't construct, but merely deconstruct, moral categories.

Biblical sexuality has been rejected, but no new and improved moral perimeters have been identified by modern society to define right or wrong sexual conduct. There may be laws, but there is literally no moral system in place to permanently forbid a man’s marrying his granddaughter or a girl’s marrying her dog. These examples bring hideous images to our minds—but none that can be condemned by any existing moral foundation for sexual behavior—other than God’s. Same-sex marriage used to call equally disgusting images to the average person's mind, but now we are not allowed to see anything wrong with such images. The time is not far away when we will not be permitted to find it disgusting for a man to marry a barnyard animal. Conventional morality has been destabilized and replaced by arbitrary whims of the most depraved of our thought-leaders.

The moral drift can only be stopped by the rational insistence on the firm foundation of God’s revealed morality. We can disagree with God's moral instructions, but we cannot demonstrate them to be wrong, nor ourselves to be rational in our rejection of them.

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Jason
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Re: A 12 year-old girl seeks answers about LGBT ideology

Post by Jason » Tue Mar 29, 2022 9:47 am

I recently had a talk with my 13-year-old son about this very issue, after he announced to me that half his friends at school are LGBT. A thorough explanation, such as the one Steve wrote out, would fly over his head. I had to think of a way to respond in very simple terms. Here is how I'm coming at it with him, since he believes in God:

There are two basic worldviews about the meaning of life. One says God put us here to get as much enjoyment and pleasure as possible. The other says that God put us here for the maturing of our souls. If the first view is correct, then how do we make sense of the profound and constant suffering that takes place here and abroad, not to mention throughout all of history, without saying that God failed in his task of putting us here primarily to gain pleasure and personal fulfillment? The second view, that God is chiefly concerned with the maturing of our souls, makes far more sense in light of suffering, which is the very thing that produces that result.

Society says that the first view is correct - that if God exists, he desires for us to live our best life now and seek out those things which give us the most pleasure. But how do we make sense of that in light of genuine suffering that eventually strikes at us all? It seems that if God exists, the second view is the only one that makes sense of the world we actually find ourselves in.

This isn't something I tell my son once and win him over. It has to be reinforced on a regular basis. We were talking about trans people and I asked him if reality is determined by our feelings. I gave the example of a man who believes he can fly so he steps off the edge of a high rise building. My son understood the point and I said, "Reality always wins." It's a simple axiom that he can remember.

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