I don’t want to be moved

File:Evelyn de Morgan - The Little Sea Maid, 1880-1888.jpgOr I do.

Alison has been twelve days off the booze, and has got a place in rehab. I am delighted for her: booze can overcome many strong people, if it gets them at a vulnerable moment, and the ordinary courage of overcoming it-

if I could finish that sentence without piling platitude on platitude, I would be a writer, though it is wonderful that the great wisdom I have attained is quotidian.

A Quaker issue. Quaker tradition! says a weighty Friend. No harm comes from Joy says another. I know what I want: not disorder and chaos, but new life arising from Godly anarchy: people allowed to be themselves create, and do not destroy. The rules which bind and chafe us make us destructive.

Here’s the Bigot, again, with a story of which I do not believe all the details. The bigot implies that all who call homophobes “haters” are hypocrites: I marveled at how dangerous those who proclaim to be “tolerant” can become when they believe their hatred is justified.

Bigot, you show flashes of intelligence so I can’t believe you do not understand this. You are a hater, because you want others File:Evelyn de Morgan - Boreas and Oreithyia, 1896.jpgto conform to your beliefs. The tolerant people want equality for all. We tolerate your belief, expressed privately between consenting adults. We cannot be expected to tolerate your wish to use your belief to maltreat others. We would not condone, though we might understand, the violent act you describe.

That irritation. It is not being moved, any more than watching TV is, even David Hare’s brilliance.

NHS grinds on. I saw the psychiatrist in November, have reduced my hormone intake, and had a second blood-test, and will see the psychiatrist again in May. I remain labile, and to any who might use this as a dire warning against M-F transition, I say it is still worth the risks. After D’s breakup with U, I will see him again at the weekend, and cannot decide whether to be friendly or express all my anger. Until I learn the lessons of teenage I am condemned to repeat them. My anger is weak. I started to express other anger to Z, and she batted it away- “Oh, you’re not still on about that, are you?”

The Bigot’s, and Francis Philip‘s, answer is that I should become exactly like them. I see that as not good enough- hamartia, in Bible Greek, missing the target- yet finding my own way in God is difficult. Right now I do not want to be moved, for good reasons: so I must allow myself to be moved.

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80 thoughts on “I don’t want to be moved

  1. Remember I mentioned the issue of genuine ideology? This is a good example. The individual you mention is attempting to put together a business venture. Unfortunately the venture is one that combines a very unpalatable form of religion. The type that exploits xenophobia.
    Her blog isn’t designed as a place for a genuine exchange of ideas. It’s dog whistling of the worse variety. There are even fabricated comments to drive traffic. A sham built to create notoriety, which I imagine she hopes she’ll later be able to cash in. Like Anne Coulter or any other of those in the opportunist circle.

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    • I am learning how insular my world-view is- powerful catholics are so pre-Reformation; and in Europe the extreme Right is a working-class and lower middle class phenomenon. Fee-paying school educated Niggle Farridge pretends to be an Ordinary Bloke. This is apparently not true in the US. I read Anne Coulter is a comedian, seeing how far she can push it, but people take her seriously, and she makes a reasonable living.

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  2. Dear Clare. I hope you are well. I do not advocate for natural marriage because I “want others to conform to [my] beliefs.” I advocate for natural marriage because the state’s primary interest in marriage is children. Children experience real, long-term pain and hurt when they lose a relationship with one or both of their parents- no matter how that comes about. While I support an adult’s right to form relationships of their choice, I reject the idea that we should institutionalize/incentivize a family structure that necessitates loss for a child.

    We can disagree about this Clare, as citizens of the same nation. But it’s not hatred or bigotry that motivates me, nor does animus motivate most natural marriage supporters.

    I don’t expect you to become just like me. I would not wish for you to be saddled with my weaknesses. I will, however, pray that the way you find to God will be one which brings you great intimacy with Him and clarity in your journey. You are cherished by Him, as I hope you know.

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    • Lies, all lies. You campaign for forced birth as well. You want children to be raised by unprepared single mothers, or by people pressurised into a long-term relationship they didn’t want, will that inevitable break down within a few years. You campaign for unwanted children to be born, and for children like these to then be denied homes with loving couples who pass all the rigorous controls of adoption requirements. Your message is inconsistent and reveals the deep-seated genuine bigotry and prejudice. Campaign for better access to birth control and education if you care about the welfare of children.

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      • You have to realise that homosexuality is the most important doctrine in Christianity for some people. Have you come across the Family Research Council? Here they are saying that World Vision, a charity supporting children in developing countries, was no longer Christian for announcing that it might employ gay people, and that Christians should cease to support World Vision. Here they are exulting that World Vision went back on its pledge, but saying that World Vision has still lost the trust of “The entire Christian community”. Rachel Held Evans remains Christian but in response says she is no longer Evangelical.

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      • I campaign for children to not be murdered because they are unwanted, yes. I advocate for sex to not be seen simply as a means to adult fulfillment but also in light of its life-giving properties, and for adults to make decisions accordingly. I advocate for innocent children not to be dismembered or burned or have their spine severed by scissors because their parents regret their decision to have sex, that it true. I recognize that two women who are extremely gifted and nurturing caregivers can never be fathers. Two gentle and attentive men can never be mothers. Children long for and deserve both a mother and a father. If you would like to call all of that bigotry and prejudice you may. It’s actually just a recognition that child rights should not be sacrificed for the sake of adult proclivities.

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        • Seeing that you bring up- I presume you mean abortion, rather than the murder of children- what do you think of the morning after pill? Is your rather graphic description of late term abortions- at what gestation are these procedures required to abort a child?

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        • And- you told the story of a lesbian couple with a child, who are investigating a church which tells them that their love is sinful. Even if they are willing to go along with that idea, I think this is a wrong turn for them. But also, I do not see how there is an improvement for the child, according to your argument. The child had two parents. One may leave. Do you think the natural mother will get back with the child’s father? Do you think she will find a different man?

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      • I don’t want to get in the way of the discussion on abortion, but Id like to offer a point of clarification on the above post. The words “Family Research Council … are saying that World Vision, a charity supporting children in developing countries, was no longer Christian for announcing that it might employ gay people” may be misunderstood by those who are not familiar with the background and details of the story.
        I doubt that World Vision have a blanket policy against employing gay people (using the modern definition of ‘gay’, ie gay sexual orientation). Yes there are people around who lack understanding of what sexual orientation actually is, and there probably are people who wouldn’t intentionally employ someone who is gay. But I don’t think World Vision have every had such a policy? Their policy up until the recent controversy, and their policy now, is that their employees should be either celibate or in a faithful marriage between husband and wife. This implies that employing a celibate gay person would be compliant with the relevant section of their policy.
        The recent changes in policy at world vision, were not about whether to employ gay people specifically, but rather about whether to employ people who are in a same-sex marriage. Some news outlets unfortunately were a little misleading in how they reported it.

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        • Welcome, and thank you for commenting. Thank you for the correction, the error is all my own. I was in a rush, and these things require careful expression to avoid generating impossible amounts of heat.

          I went to your website. “Stasis online- bringing balance to the world wide web. Some websites only present one side of the story. That’s where we help out…” I find that commendable, but then see your latest post calls SPLC “a leftist group who regularly criticise those… who believe the bible”, you are repeating the calumny that the liberal does not believe the Bible. How one could “believe” such an inconsistent bundle of documents escapes me, but as a liberal Christian I respect it deeply, and seek to follow its guidance. Do you eat every meal in the cafeteria?

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            • Oh, I meant cafeteria or supermarket Christian, picking what we like and discarding the rest- a slur chucked around quite a lot, between the Christian left and right.

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            • Oh I see. Sorry I can be a bit slow at times.
              Yes I agree that “cafeteria Christianity” is a real problem. But I think many who are not conversant with Scripture, perceive it to be more of a problem than it is. EG there are many people who mistakenly believe that a Christian cannot each shellfish, when in fact that was never a Christian doctrine. And Im encouraged that there are some voices within conservative Christendom who are pointing out the need to be consistent, EG to not ignore what Jesus said about divorce. But yes, you raise a good point!

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            • Thanks. Ive now read the post (Righteousness and hypocrisy). So what do we do? The liberal approach of intentional cafeteria Christianity doesn’t sit well with me. Jesus seemed to say that following him was a choice of all or nothing (EG Matthew 23:23). But the conservative approach seems to often be a matter of having blind spots despite claiming to not be inconsistent. I like your suggestion – “One response to my imperfection is to see how often I fall short, and keep trying.”

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    • Did you also campaign for the woman who was sexually harassed by a pastor at your church? Was the pastor in question your husband? How much money does he/you make by fomenting hatred towards minorities, Mrs. Faust? If you want to play in the big leagues, reality style, para bellum- as Napoleon wrongly said in latin.

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      • Oh. You are referring to the youth VOLUNTEER (for three months) who had an internet relationship with a minor (no physical relationship). That volunteer turned himself into my husband, and the youth pastor (the volunteer’s close friend) called the police to report it himself. The leadership of the church (lead by my husband) did church discipline immediately and removed the volunteer from everything having to do with our church (this was done to protect the innocent), and at the same time has meet with him every week for two years to restore the man’s marriage and to restore him to our church fellowship. He was not restored to our church until the courts were done with their due process (i.e., counseling for one year and all charges dropped because there was no official crime – no physical relationship).

        The teenager has received an outpouring of support in the form of counseling and pastoral care. The leadership has been careful to protect her identity in accordance with her and her family’s wishes (which you are violating when you seek information totally taken out of context). The girl and her family are all dong well. She is amazing, resilient, thriving and a dear friend of mine. The volunteer and his wife who, through painstaking honesty and sacrifice to one another, have rebuilt their marriage and are doing well and have been restored to our church, but he will never be allowed to work with youth again at our church.

        This is the ultimate story of redemption and forgiveness. Sin was exposed before anything happened.

        But way to go with the sensationalism. Painful situation for ALL involved. I’m not surprised that you treat it as sport.

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            • There is obviously more than one Grace Church. The one you cited is a Presbyterian church. But good try. It would have been very helpful to your smear campaign if that has been us.

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            • You’re right about that our church has fallen people in it. I am chief among them. And we do not do things perfectly. We miss the mark sometimes. But the elders take their role of protecting their flock seriously. And they don’t tolerate those in leadership who are not demonstrating a life of integrity and a protective love for those they lead. And I’m grateful for being numbered with the people of Grace, who are striving to serve Jesus by loving those in their community. We bumble through, we recognize our inadequacy for the task in front of us, we extend mercy to one another, we bind up each other’s wounds, we try to make sure that no one walks a hard road alone, and we seek to love the unlovely, and we offer forgiveness to one another when we mess up. You may not be able to conceive of such a place. Thank God that such places do exist.

              You may have the final word here, Pink. I wish you well.

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            • I am interested in this ding-dong with Pink, but I would like (if you have the time) you to respond to one of my questions: what do you think of the morning after pill, do you accept that I am Christian (in any sense, even the most ignorant and deluded Christian) and do you think it benefits that girl if one of her mums leaves?

              It appears that in the case of MacDonald, the allegations have not been put to proof as the issue was timeous making of the claim; and there are two Grace Churches in Seattle, one Presbyterian, one with a pastor called Faust.

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            • Clare, I like you. (In the Christian sense, I may even love you.) Since the first time we met (I believe you challenged me about whether or not I knew what the word arsenokoitai really meant) I have really had a tender place in my heart for you. I read through several of your posts at the time and just genuinely was drawn to your story. I have prayed God’s nearness and goodness for you many times.

              But on this thread where those who are so disturbed by my position, have outed my name, sought to unearth scandal at my church, and accused my husband of sexually harassment, I’m not going to sit around and have a little chat with you about the morning after pill.

              It’s not for me to say whether or not you are a Christian. Are you forsaking your earthly desires and following Him? Have you sought first His kingdom and His righteousness? Have you lost your life for the sake of Christ? Are you continually setting your heart and mind on things of heaven and not things of earth? Are you building your life on the commands of Christ? Have you denied Him by your words or deeds before men? It’s not enough to just show up, or say that we know Him. We are known to be His children by what we say and do. We are known by the joy, faithfulness, peace and courage that overflows from us when we abide in Christ. And God knows that I have much room to improve in all of the above.

              I wish you well, Clare. I truly do. If you are ever so inclined, it would be my honor to pray with you or for you about anything, anytime. askthebigot@hotmail.com

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            • I think you go beyond preaching the gospel, to obsessing about gay people. Your blog is avowedly about gay marriage.

              The same applies to your commenters. Most show an unhealthy interest in homosexuality, in their comments and their posts. On your most recent post, of 14 commenters, eight have blogs. Two of those are challenging you; two have blogged about other things; and four are blogging most recently about gay issues:

              Exceptions: Kayla Gulick; dmhenry, who blog on other things;
              Commenters challenging you: kcchief1; John Zande;
              no link: flounderteeth; tisha; susie; strawberry; hewhoshallnotbenamed; The Atomic Mom (gravatar only);
              Knowthetruth: “Don’t let gay activist bullies intimidate you”;
              pspruett: “Denial of service error”- on a bakery refusing a wedding cake to a gay couple
              stasisonline: “SPLC exposed”- for attacking an ex-gay;
              cogitatingduck: “Intolerance at Mozilla”- for giving money to Prop 8.

              The gospel is about other things beside homosexuality, you know.

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            • You mean integrity like yours? Hiding an astroturf movement and contributing to people lying about it? Using members of your church as pawns to spread a message of hate and exclusion for personal monetary gain? Bravo, Madam. Integrity indeed.

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      • Um. That is Latin. Was Napoleon going to respond in German? Pig-latin perhaps? How exactly do you speak Latin in something other than Latin? Is this the Latin you learned from your education in the porn industry?
        As us Americans would translate – Lock and load, sugar.
        Would you like my address? Social Security number? My diary? Blood type? Menstrual cycle?
        Perhaps someone who is going to throw stones of an I KNOW WHO YOU ARE nature should post with something other than the moniker of pinkagendest.
        I suggest you use asshat.

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        • “Frau” as in Hewho’s wife, it seems.

          Napoleon quoted the latin tag “si vis pacem, para bellum”- if you want peace, prepare for war. I cannot detect any error in it, but Pink is better educated than I. Your sarcasm misses your target.

          I read the rest of your comment, and think, “Ew”. I understand you are a regular commenter on the Bigot’s site. She is welcome to you.

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          • I’m by no means more educated than you! I just pretend to be clever!!! In reality I’m just terribly boring, and my memory is hideous. Most of what I read sticks with me. Not always immediate recall, but give me a little while and I can probably quote it if I found it interesting or summarize it if I didn’t. In this case the Napoleon comment is both a Latin and History teacher joke that the older ones always told, always :D

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            • Si vis bellum para pacem
              “For example, with reference to the foreign policy of Napoleon Bonaparte, the historian, de Bourrienne, said:
              Everyone knows the adage… Had Bonaparte been a Latin scholar he would probably have reversed it and said, Si vis bellum para pacem.
              Meaning that if you are planning a war, you should put other nations off guard by cultivating peace. Conversely, another interpretation could be that preparing for peace may lead another party to wage war on you.” :)

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    • When I say you want me to become exactly like you, I have in mind things like the prayer in your pingback, praying that I “come to Jesus”. In writing that you dismiss an entire denomination of the Church, and any understanding of Christ other than your own. I have come to Jesus, I assure you. Is it my acceptance of LGBT folk that blinds you to that?

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  3. You’ve been picking scabs again.
    You’re down digging through your old muscles looking for a clue.
    You’ve been crawling your belly clearing out what could’ve been.
    Clearly, you’ve been wallowing in your own confused, insecure delusions.

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    • Hewho,

      It is my custom to welcome new commenters here, but I make an exception for you. You insult my friend, who remains courteous though dismissive. I would welcome you despite your insults and foul mouth, if I imagined you would learn anything here. I leave your comment because it beautifully shows who you are, and what you are like- it is water off a duck’s back for Pink.

      The Bigot says, below, about gay marriage supporters, “They hunt as a pack, they name call, insult and intimidate others throughout the threads on my posts.” I presume she thinks these tactics a bad thing, when used against her. I am not interested in the comments she has deleted.

      On hate, she is the one seeking to control other people’s lives, by preventing them from marrying. I disapprove of her beliefs, tactics, understanding of Christianity, and her campaigning to oppress others. An impartial observer would see which of these positions is hate, but you will not.

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    • Your angry wife’s going to lose her job if you’re not careful. You’re not displaying the sincere face-of-love that Katy’s been trying to cultivate, and comments like this reflect badly on their religious mission to show the world that gay relationships are evil (even though they love gay people). Anyway, your wife seems angry enough without the job loss, watch your step. ;)

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      • So is it me or is it my wife that is not displaying the sincere ‘Face of love’ (should not be hyphenated)? I will let the Christians respond, if they choose, but I’m pretty sure there is a difference between sin and evil.

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  4. Pingback: I'm coming out| asktheBigot

  5. Here is the Bigot’s post:

    Howdy folks! Katy Faust here. I am the big bad author of this blog. I, KATY FAUST, am the official friendly neighborhood bigot. “The Bigot.”

    If you have read all of the material here you will know that I began this blog because many gay marriage supporters painted all opponents to gay marriage as bigots.

    As haters.

    No credence was given to the truth that many opponents have a deep love for the gay people in their life. Never was the notion entertained that it is from a place of love for children and their well-being. That children have a natural right to be known and loved by their mother and father. All of that nonsense is completely ignored to serve the narrative. To oppose gay marriage makes you an un-evolved troglodyte hater. That’s it. End of debate.

    I had hoped and prayed (and prayed and prayed) that this here forum would be a place where cooler heads would prevail. Where I could foster understanding and wrestle through with my fellow Christians how to navigate the rocky shores of scripture crashing against our current culture. I had this glorious idea that I could create a place where we could attack issues. Issues, not people. And much of the time, we have succeeded. Thanks to some very thoughtful, respectful and mature contributors. I am so deeply grateful for this.

    There exists, however, a contingent of gay marriage supporters who are not satisfied with this elevated level of dialogue. They hunt as a pack, they name call, insult and intimidate others throughout the threads on my posts. I have allowed them to comment, nevertheless, because someone has to risk having real dialogue despite the dissenting voices. Further, I believe that people really reveal themselves, sadly to everyone but themselves, when they feel they have a justified hatred.

    But for these trolls (their words not mine) that’s not enough. They write smear pieces on me (samplings here and here[this post]). Because their position is flawed they take only segments of my posts in order to twist it to fit their narrative. The one that I am a bigot. Then in classic bullying behavior, all of their cohorts get to join the sport and kick the stupid Christian around too. Right. Just typing this I am saddened for these people. I think they might actually believe that I, me, am the hater.

    But that’s not all folks!! This kind of personal attack simply won’t suffice. They mine the inter webs and discover my husband’s blog. They tell him that they know who his wife is. They share my name within the pack. They reveal it on each other’s blogs, for the purpose of intimidation. Because we disagree. Can anyone else smell the implied threat here?

    This is a good time methinks to do a refresher for all of you dear readers. What is a bigot?

    Bigot: a person who is obstinately or intolerantly devoted to his or her own opinions and prejudices; especially: one who regards or treats the members of a group with hatred and intolerance.

    Interesting that. No?

    So. Dearest Pink, Ark, Violet and Clare:

    This is my prayer for each of you. I pray that you “come to Jesus.” I pray that where you have needs, God would meet them. When you hunger, you would be filled. When you are lonely, that you would find sweet friendship. When you stumble, that someone strong would be there to pick you up. When you are hurt, you would be healed. I wish you well. All of you.

    Amen.

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    • I’m not clear why she chose to call those two posts ‘smear pieces’. I don’t think we’ve insulted her in either post or twisted anything she’s said. It’s useful that people reading her posts now understand the kind of organisation she comes from and that members of that organisation are the regular commenters on her posts.

      It’s weird how she claims this is all ‘because we disagree’, as opposed to the fact that we independently and from diverse backgrounds object to the harmful views she’s spreading, views that have no biblical or logical basis.

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  6. Clare, I am very saddened to hear I am not welcome. Out of curiosity what exactly was the insult to Pink you reference? And really, are you saying Pink does not insult? Have you read his comments?

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  7. Pink, as I have explained who I am, and my relationship to Mrs. Faust, directly to you on her blog I can only assume you have either taken leave of your senses or you think there is some other deep secret I have not shared. If that is the case please make your accusation so it can either be confirmed or denied. The continued innuendo makes you look cowardly and a bit crazy.

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    • My accusation has been made enough times. You pretended you were a non-religious bystander, unrelated to anyone in the debate- and yet your IP and geolocation say otherwise. If you’ve explained what your connection is, I missed it.

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      • We agree! You did miss it. Not much in the way of common ground but it’s a start. Where exactly did you clearly state your accusation? I recall nothing more than innuendo.
        I am non-religious so no pretending there. Asked if I was a friend I responded with maybe I was a friend or maybe I was something else. Neither an actual answer as I did not at the time think, due to her bad manners, that VW deserved an answer. The assumption and conclusion was yours.

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  8. Clare, just to level-set for better understanding, is this an example of Pink being ‘courteous though dismissive’? “Get a real job, scam artist. Do something productive, you disgusting little piece of trash” Is that last part courteous or dismissive?

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    • It’s Christian luuuuuv, darling. The kind dispensed by Grace Church Seattle. It’s tough luuuuv. I mean, wouldn’t it be terribly un-Christian of me to wish you to spend the rest of your life at Starbuck’s and all your free time focused on the private sex/legal lives of people who have nothing to do with your life?
      If one is a ‘Christian’ doesn’t one want people to progress, be happy and do something palpably productive?

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  9. Clare, I am not angry. Sometimes frustrated? Yes. Why? People who are terribly wrong in their thinking trying to influence others in a way that will be detrimental for all human kind. Then there is the trying to share truth and facts with them in order to help them and being met with extremely impolite resistance. Some of you have very thick walls around your sensitive psyches, I assume to protect the damaged areas. I don’t know if that is the case with you Clare but it is with a few of your associates.

    Have I been ever the model of gracious congeniality? Probably not, but I try to do no worse than match tone.

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    • If you were a Christian, you would know that “a soft answer turneth away wrath”. Perhaps you were, once, so do.

      You see, I don’t get it. How is it “detrimental for all human kind” if gay people marry? It is wonderful for the couple, lovely for their friends, and a small pleasure for everyone else as everyone loves a lover. How does it harm anyone? “Detrimental for all human kind” you say- a consequentialist rather than deontological argument. Do you mean for the children of these couples?

      Elsewhere, today, I read this comment: The only ones really being nasty are gay activists, They are the real bullies. I am not the one who called these people names or cussed at them because we disagree, Most gays I have met on the web are simply nasty people who act like a two year old who can’t have their way. They like to paint the picture that they are poor helpless and oppressed, when actually they are mean spirited, filthy mouthed, God haters. This is why they smear anyone who dares to in any way object to their behavior.

      I confess I am bewildered. I hear the depth of feeling, but have no idea how it could be triggered.

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      • Clare, So should I try a softer answer, or turn away as I am wrath?

        My ‘detrimental’ comment was in reference to factions of the gay community that would promote false rights. Specifically the RIGHT to a child they can not produce. THAT would be detrimental for all human kind. I have defined rights on VW’s blog (what is a right? post) if you care to give it a read. It should clarify my position for you in regard to rights and why this supposed right is a false right.

        I have no care if same sex individuals join in a union. They can call it whatever they wish. Marriage, shackin’-up, whatever. Go be happy.

        Deontological? I can’t remember are you a Kantist? That is one school of thought, however it is a duty based theory. Duty to who or what? God? Society? The law? Rules of ethics? What binds one to this duty? Who defines the rules?in what why do you use this?

        As to the comment you read today, I have no idea where it came from, but I can assume this person feels they have been subjected to name calling bullying by gay advocates. Without context or knowledge of what they reference I can’t say where the feeling comes from either.

        It is too bad that discussions between people of differing opinions often degrade into angry name calling and insults. I promise that I will treat you politely from here-on-out if you do the same, deal? However that does not mean that you will find all of my thoughts perfectly to your liking, nor I’m sure will I like all of yours, but I will express my thoughts respectfully, will you do the same?

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        • Politeness makes life so much easier. Wikipedia has a lot of useful stuff around conversing over the web.

          I disagree about rights, I am afraid. And no, I am not Kantian.

          What do you think of in vitro fertilization? Or Surrogacy? Lots of hetero couples cannot produce children without help. Then imagine a woman who has an ovarian cyst, which can be removed leaving her fertile. Is there any problem with removing the cyst?

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          • Clare, the method is not as relevant as the question of it being a right. Many do require help and thankfully there is such help available, but none have a right to it, gay or not. There is an important distinction between rights and privileges here that many do not understand.

            I’m not sure I get the cyst removal point. Please clarify if you would.

            Because I appreciate directness, does this mean you accept the terms of civility I suggested?

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            • I don’t think your terms of civility work. Most people judge themselves differently from others. If we replied serially, each imagining ourselves as civil as the last comment from the other, we might escalate. Only seeking civility all the time, and forgiving the other’s lapses into pressing the “post” button too quickly, work.

              The cyst removal was help to conceive, just as IVF is.

              Let us posit two couples. One is heterosexual. The man is infertile. The other is lesbian. In both couples, a woman gets artificial insemination by donor. They do not get it as of right- they pay for it, or get it on the NHS in the UK or Australia. Is either of these couples more “detrimental for all human kind” than the other?

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  10. Clare, what will come as a result is what will be detrimental. When you say I, you or anyone else has a right to a human you are starting down a road that goes nowhere pleasant.

    As to your question I would say neither are detrimental for all human kind. I still think a mixed sex influence is best for the child, thus my position that the mixed sex couple should be the ideal in regard to adoption. In the case of the lesbian couple I would ask that they bring men into their life for the sake of the child. I don’t think the structure is Ideal but acceptable.

    Then can we agree to seek civility all the time?

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    • Don’t be disingenuous. There’s no such thing as ‘ideal’. Every single day there’s a heterosexual parent who abuses their child. Every day there are heterosexual people who rape, commit incest, batter their wives, steal, assault, engage in white collar crime- You know what that means? That sexual orientation determines nothing related to ethics. That each case, each family, each couple should be judged on their own merits. Sexual orientation isn’t the be all and end all factor as implied by your cohorts.
      In the real world, where people take real things into account, there will be many gay couples who are considerably more capable than heterosexual couples. It all depends on the needs of the child and it’s the job of experts to place the child in the right home.
      What your posse is proposing is the prohibition of gay marriage and gay adoption- point blank. Based on the factual error that homosexual parents cannot offer a child a decent home/life.

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  11. Pink, you may tax my ability to seek civility but I will do my best, even though you enter this discussion with an unfounded accusation, and again rudely attack my intelligence.

    I have made this clear in the past, in direct comment to you, that I am not suggesting, in any way, that mixed sex couples are transcendent to human nature and human fallibility. Obviously the world is filled with human debris of all sexual orientation.

    Regardless of their capabilities they still do not, as a couple, provide the influence of both sexes. This fact should be ‘taken into consideration by the experts’.

    Now how you got to – “What your posse is proposing is the prohibition of gay marriage and gay adoption- point blank. Based on the factual error that homosexual parents cannot offer a child a decent home/life.” – is unclear.

    I have made it clear that I do not care what kind of union you enter into. I do think it unfortunate that you seek State action to validate your union when we all should seek removing the State from the business of validating unions altogether. But that is a separate discussion. One I would be happy to discuss if you wish.
    I don’t recall the statement that “Homosexuals can not provide a decent home.” Are you attributing that to me? Can they provide a good decent home? Yes. Equal to the ideal in the generic? No. Could specific same sex couples be found that present a example of parenting that is fantastic? Yes.

    So no, I propose no such thing.

    Lastly, do you intentionally misrepresent me or are you misunderstanding me?

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    • I hear your statement that the claim of a “right” to a child is modern slavery, but I don’t know where that occurs, in your view.

      If a gay couple adopt, you agree that they can “provide a good decent home,” even perhaps “fantastic”. An opposite sex couple would have the advantage of parental influence from both sexes, but opposite sex couples are fallible humans.

      The problem with adoption is the shortage of couples. Is the advantage to the child of having mixed-sex parents so great, in your view, that a child should be left in a series of foster-homes rather than adopted by a same sex couple?

      In the UK, the Government (I use British English, we use the term “Government” to mean roughly what you would mean by “Administration”) decided that adoption agencies could not refuse to put a child with same sex couples, on the principle of non-discrimination. This is the closest I can see to your “right” to a child. But, given the shortage of suitable adoptive couples, the Government decided that a refusal to consider same sex couples was unjustifiable. Even if part of the reason for that was belief in the principles of equality and non-discrimination, the focus was on the rights of the child, not of the parent. The old judgment that they were unfit to be parents because they were gay was seen to be baseless.

      I raised the issue of a lesbian couple using medical help to conceive, and you called that “not ideal but acceptable”. I hope we could extend that to a male couple.

      And finally there is the situation where an opposite sex couple has had a child, then split, and the parent with care has found a same sex partner. Again, “not ideal but acceptable”?

      Like

  12. Clare,

    Excuse the brevity, time…

    There are those who argue it is and should be institutionalized into law as a right.

    Yes, opposite sex couples are fallible, so are same sex couples.

    Preference for foster homes? Indeed no. I think a child is better served in a stable home, not the constant change of foster homes. I would rather a child be placed with a same sex couple who met all other requirements than live out of a suitcase always fearing they are one day away from a new ‘home’.

    I see the law in the UK that you reference being one to clarify that you can not be excluded from consideration for the privilege of adoption due to homosexuality. Far cry from saying anyone has a right to a human. As you say this was a focus on the child.

    I answered specific to lesbian couples as your questions was specific to a lesbian couple. My answer was not intended to excluded men. Yes, with the same request, include woman in your life.

    “And finally there is the situation where an opposite sex couple has had a child, then split, and the parent with care has found a same sex partner. Again, “not ideal but acceptable”? – Yes not ideal as it is a broken home, but acceptable.

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    • I read that the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence- “NICE”, which decides what treatments should be available on the NHS- decided that everyone had a right to three rounds of IVF. Insurance companies, too, have to decide what treatments they will cover. The European Convention on Human Rights, article 8, states a right to private and family life, but that is established family life, the family you have, not the child you might want.

      I see by the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, article 16, there is the right to marry and found a family. Is this what you mean? Do you find it has particular objectionable practical effects?

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  13. Clare,

    “The NHS- decided that everyone had a right to three rounds of IVF” did they decide it was a right? or was it a privilege that should be granted? While I am not opposed to IVF, it is not a right, nor is NICE an organization that should be in the business of pretending they grant rights. The determination of Right is best left to logicians and philosophers.

    As to article 8, I find these two phrases deeply disturbing and would think you do as well, As they are reasons your ‘rights’ under article 8 may be revoked. “The economic well-being of the country”, and “for the protection of health or morals” Frankly the two together make a loophole that defeats the article entirely, makes it nothing but pretty words. When the winds of change blow and the State vision of morals and economic well being change…

    As to the UN, I find very little value in the UN and anything it has done. It is a stronghold of the worlds mediocre busybody citizens. The declaration references a right to free education and other things that are fantasy. It really is an embarrassment to all mankind. That is my opinion of it in general.
    As to article 16, I actually think they got that one right (stopped watches). In its original context. Not saying it should or should not apply to same sex couples, just saying that is not the context in which it was written.

    Was there something specific to the UN declaration you think I found objectionable? I want to be sure I have answered your question.

    Like

    • Sorry to butt in.

      @ Clare

      The NICE decision is interesting – to me, anyway. Thanks for posting about that.

      We had a big debate within our health authority, before NICE was set up, about IVF funding. It was at the time (must have been Thatcher) when decisions about rationing and funding were encouraged to be made more public. For all I didn’t agree with Thatcher and most of her health care ideals, ie insurance and privatisation, I think making funding decisions explicit and public is a good idea. The pot is finite. How do you balance say, cancer drugs, cardiothoracic treatment, IVF, amniocentesis, obesity operations, paediatric services … the list is endless.

      Anyway, supported by our pubic health department of medics, our executive directors (including two medics) decided we wouldn’t provide it, but clearly it had to go to the board. Our chief exec discussed it with our chair, but in the end she backed off and at the board meeting said we should look at it again and set criteria. She should probably have declared an interest in the whole issue – she was infertile.

      From memory, we set an age limit, residency in the area for x years and probably a stable relationship, also, like NICE it would have been limited to two or three goes. I’m guessing NICE will also have set additional criteria.

      @ Hewho

      Yes it is a right. There is a right to free health care on point of delivery within the NHS in the UK. This is A Good Thing. It is not a privilege, it is a right enshrined in law.

      NICE is not pretending to grant rights. It is a government organisation established to ensure that wherever you live in the UK, you have access to the same treatment as anyone else in a different part of the country. Local health organisations MUST follow the NICE decisions.

      The determination of appropriate clinical treatment, based on cost benefit analysis is not best left to logicians and philosophers. There is a very strong code of ethics within the NHS to the extent that we have local ethics committees too.

      Personally I don’t agree with IVF as I don’t think people have a ‘right’ to a child. But on the other hand, I’ve never wanted one, so I can’t understand the anguish of someone who can’t have one. Nor do I agree with screening programmes which I was in charge of for some years. I think IVF and screening are a poor use of resources. Health promotion serves little purpose either. IVF doesn’t always work. I would rather the money be spent trying to save a life than create one. But there you go, just my opinion.

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      • Roughseas,

        “Yes it is a right. There is a right to free health care on point of delivery within the NHS in the UK. This is A Good Thing. It is not a privilege, it is a right enshrined in law.”

        Actually collective groups, whatever you wish to call them and regardless of whatever power under law they might have, do not define a right. Actual rights are defined by the nature of our existence. Or is it your position that the right to own a human was a valid right when the practice of slavery was enshrined in law?

        “The determination of appropriate clinical treatment, based on cost benefit analysis is not best left to logicians and philosophers. There is a very strong code of ethics within the NHS to the extent that we have local ethics committees too”

        I agree, however the determination of rights and the nature of rights is.

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        • Actually collective groups, whatever you wish to call them and regardless of whatever power under law they might have, do not define a right. Actual rights are defined by the nature of our existence. Or is it your position that the right to own a human was a valid right when the practice of slavery was enshrined in law?

          False dichotomy. The UK has a far more intrusive government than the US, yet in the UK we were free to campaign against slavery, and changed that law. UK public spending is 46% of GDP, much of that from new borrowing (I am Keynesian enough to think we should borrow more). What it means to be human, living in complex, interconnected society, requires us to have this level of co-operative living, controlled by democratic elections and lively free speech.

          Rights come from laws, and the basis of any law is force: in England, the Norman Conquest is the foundation of our constitution. That constitution produced the NHS, and also the system of Wednesbury reasonableness moderating our right to health care in particular circumstances.

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          • “Rights come from laws, and the basis of any law is force”

            Are you saying the primary right is the right of conquest? Rights indeed do not come from law. Not sure we can find common ground on rights but I am willing to try.

            Like

            • What are Rights? Rights come from force.

              In Hobbes’ “State of Nature”, where life is nasty, brutish and short, the individual with the biggest muscles, the biggest club or the biggest gang can enforce his will, and this is still the case today. The gang may be called the Police, or the Army, but it is still a gang. I follow the legal positivist Hans Kelsen on this: a Communist, he gave the philosophical underpinning whereby the Communists could make the law whatever they liked, because they had the biggest gang. For Kelsen, every law had a legal justification, going back to the Grundnorm: a statutory instrument has force because of the Act of Parliament permitting it to be made; the Act because of the British constitution, and the Constitution from the Norman Conquest.

              A right arises from tort or contract, but only because there is a law to make it so.

              Every Government- with the possible exception of North Korea- governs by consent, to an extent. Public opinion matters.

              Rights also come from moral philosophy. Human beings have a moral sense, and moralists use words to say what is right. There is a long tradition of “Natural Law”, on the analogy of biological or physical laws, which derives law from human nature as social beings. Sometimes in seeking to make law, the biggest gangs refer to this, because we have human nature and are social beings. So we have the Declaration of the Rights of Man, part of the Constitution of the Fifth French Republic, the English Bill of Rights, and other documents.

              The European Convention on Human Rights is an international treaty enforcible against governments of countries party to that treaty. It is incorporated in English and Scots Law in the Human Rights Act.

              The UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights is not enforcible, but influences thinkers and legislators. From the Cold War, it has Russian rights- the art.23 “protection against unemployment” and 25 “adequate standard of living” as well as American rights, 17 “right to property”.

              Any argument on rights could cover a huge amount of ground. “What is a Right?” can be answered through moral philosophy, jurisprudence, or the observation of actual rights in particular societies. I tend to feel it is too wide a subject to debate, but we could try if you like.

              I was going to post this as a post, but don’t feel it is well-enough thought through.

              Like

    • I think we’re in agreement, actually. Hooray! You talked about the false “right” to a child a gay couple could not produce, but in the case of assisted fertility where someone has paid for it (we pay taxes for the NHS), or adoption where the gay couple are the best available adoptive parents in the circumstances, you agree that is not ideal but acceptable, and I would agree that the gay couple could not assert a “right” to a child outside those circumstances of paid assisted fertility or consensual and assessed adoption.

      I interpreted what you said initially differently. You talked of “factions of the gay community that would promote false rights. Specifically the RIGHT to a child they can not produce”. I thought you meant that a gay couple should not use assisted fertility, or adopt. Now, I would not assert that everyone would take that meaning from your words, but in threads where we might seem to be on different Sides- gay rights v right-wing morals- I think it likely enough.

      We could go on to human rights generally, and that is a wide topic. Inspired by you, I posted on Hobby Lobby and the Affordable Care Act: I wrote before our agreement to be civil. Oh well. I think I could get people more or less on my side nodding in agreement, but doubt I could persuade someone who started off strongly in the other camp. If you felt moved to say anything there I would be interested, and might respond.

      Like

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