Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Mostly on Maine

Though I have always been highly supportive of queers and queer rights, I'm not necessarily any more educated on the issue than the next godless college student. And I've largely left the topic alone on my blog, the same way I have with politics. I would like to change this. I am serious. Next year, I fully intend to join, as an ally, an LGBT student group, see how that goes.

And I want to blog about it too. Trouble is, it's not immediately obvious what to blog about. How about some news? News is easy.

So, Maine! Maine right now is in a very similar situation to California last year. Last year, same-sex marriage was briefly legal here in California, but by passing prop 8, it was made illegal again. I'm still bitter about it.

In Maine, the legislature voted to allow same-sex marriage. But if voters pass proposition 1 next November, then same-sex marriage will be made illegal again. Readers, please make sure to vote NO on prop 1 in Maine. If Maine turns down prop 1 and allows same-sex marriage, we in California will be totally jealous. In a good way, of course. We will love you, and want to be you.

Which brings me to one of the reasons why it's so important. Maine is setting a precedent for other states to follow. If Maine legalizes same-sex marriage, it will be the fifth state to do so. There's still 45 more to go. When we talk about social progress, it isn't something which just happens naturally, generation by generation. It's something we make happen, by fighting every step of the way.

Greta got me all pumped about Maine, but I live in California, the loser state. And I probably have about one reader who can vote in Maine. Whatever! If you don't live in Maine, you can still give your moral and/or financial support.

In slightly older news, the American Psychological Association (APA) strongly recommended against the use of conversion therapy, which is therapy intended to turn gay people straight. Actually, I was under the impression that the APA was already unfriendly to conversion therapy previously, but here we have an entire report on the subject. The report says that conversion therapy is not only ineffective, but can be harmful, causing depression and suicide attempts.

NARTH contends that the APA report was biased, since it excluded several papers which supported conversion therapy. The opposite is true. The APA defined the criteria for an acceptable scientific study before looking at the results. That's the sort of scientific procedure which warms my heart. NARTH's own report, on the other hand, selectively included studies which supported conversion therapy.

If gays could undergo therapy to become straight, I'm not quite sure if that would be good or bad. But that's besides the point, because conversion therapy is ineffective. It's alternative medicine meets homophobia, basically (though it's typically supported by people on the opposite side of the political spectrum). They might as well be "treating" homosexuality by hovering their hands over their skin, trying to manipulate their bio-energetic fields.


Jeffrey Ellis said...

It's kind of hard to blog about this issue without touching on politics, I would think. Support for gay marriage is a socially liberal position and opposition is socially conservative one.

Hmmm, maybe I'll post on this myself. ;-)

miller said...

If I must touch politics, then so be it!

Seriously, I think legalizing gay marriage has got to be the most obvious issue in all of politics. It's up there with "Don't waste military money on woo like remote viewing," or "No, Obama was not born in Kenya."