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Author Topic: Being against homosexuality is homophobic?  (Read 26848 times)

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Offline Shjade

Re: Being against homosexuality is homophobic?
« Reply #175 on: April 30, 2012, 06:14:07 PM »
The being is irrelevant, because it doesn't change the fact that someone doesn't have to hate someone else to disapprove of/dislike them.

Offline Will

Re: Being against homosexuality is homophobic?
« Reply #176 on: April 30, 2012, 06:15:02 PM »
So we're down to a comparison of the meanings of hate/dislike?  I've always thought it was just a matter of degree, and thus, there's no real practical difference.

Offline Shjade

Re: Being against homosexuality is homophobic?
« Reply #177 on: April 30, 2012, 06:22:51 PM »
The semantics are the only thing I'm arguing, yes. There's a pretty extreme practical difference between disliking a thing and hating it, despite how watered-down the word "hate" sometimes is these days.

There's a reason they're called "hate crimes" and not "dislike crimes," after all. People dislike all kinds of things. That's where preferences come from. Hate is on a whole different level.

Offline Trieste

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Re: Being against homosexuality is homophobic?
« Reply #178 on: April 30, 2012, 08:05:02 PM »
No, Will/Trieste, you're missing the point. You can be against something/think it's wrong without hating it.

I think speeding is wrong. I don't hate people who drive over the speed limit. I just think they shouldn't do it.

See how that works?

There's no need to make it such a personal ZOMG YOU MUST HAET IT thing. It's not a black and white issue. Plenty of room in-between for people who just don't like the idea/feel uncomfortable about it/are okay with it as long as they don't have to see or hear about it/etc.

Thus: being against homosexuality != hate of homosexuals.

I disagree.

How about... we not compare homosexuality to breaking the law, first of all? That would be good.

Second, just because you don't hate something with a fire-and-brimstone type of passion doesn't mean that "well, I just don't like the idea of those people" isn't a type of hate. It just means it's more subtle, more insidious, and more easy to try to justify.

Offline Shjade

Re: Being against homosexuality is homophobic?
« Reply #179 on: April 30, 2012, 08:25:54 PM »
I disagree.

How about... we not compare homosexuality to breaking the law, first of all? That would be good.

Second, just because you don't hate something with a fire-and-brimstone type of passion doesn't mean that "well, I just don't like the idea of those people" isn't a type of hate. It just means it's more subtle, more insidious, and more easy to try to justify.

Random example was random. I was pointing out the reasoning behind assuming dislike equates hate; the specific example is irrelevant. I wasn't making any comparison between homosexuality and breaking the law. How about we not distract from the point?

Second, yes, it does. Disapproval is not a type of hate, even systemic disapproval. Condescension, prejudice, revulsion, disdain - these are all things it could be. Hate is that passion you're saying it doesn't need to have. It's that element that requires you to respond, to do something about what you're feeling. It's a powerful thing.

Further, I don't understand why there's such a need to equate dislike of an act with dislike of a people. I don't watch homosexual porn because I don't like it. Does that mean I hate homosexuals since, apparently, their sexual preference is all they are and thus disliking it means I am required to both dislike and, therefore, hate them?

Do you see how ridiculous this gets in a very short span of time?

While I'm thinking about it, when did homosexuality become some kind of sacrosanct concept? If I said something like, "I don't find black men attractive," I am highly doubtful anyone would accuse me of being racist because of it, yet saying "I don't find homosexuality attractive" is apparently a red flag of hate against gay people - an insidious, subtle red flag. Wait, what?

Offline Trieste

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Re: Being against homosexuality is homophobic?
« Reply #180 on: April 30, 2012, 08:33:20 PM »
It's not distracting from the point, it's pointing out that your comparison was thoughtless. Do I think you were trying to say homosexuality should be illegal? Hardly. But comparing it to a crime was, in a word, insensitive.

There is a difference between not being homosexual and being against homosexuality. Being against it implies an adversarial point of view, at which point one is essentially placing oneself against a group specifically because of their sexuality. You're right: homosexuals are more than their sexuality. However, that doesn't stop people from judging them based solely on their sexuality, and that is essentially the definition of homophobia; basing your opinion of someone on a small facet of their personality rather than because they're an ass, or because they're greedy, or because they're conniving - or avoiding them despite them being none of those things - is really a hateful thing to do.

Offline Shjade

Re: Being against homosexuality is homophobic?
« Reply #181 on: April 30, 2012, 08:48:51 PM »
It's not distracting from the point, it's pointing out that your comparison was thoughtless. Do I think you were trying to say homosexuality should be illegal? Hardly. But comparing it to a crime was, in a word, insensitive.
So it's a good thing I wasn't comparing it to a crime, then. I was referring to "something," as noted immediately preceding the analogy: "You can be against something/think it's wrong without hating it." I then gave an example of thinking something is wrong without hating it, point being that whatever fills in the "something" doesn't matter as the same concept applies. There was no comparison to homosexuality there. You are seeing a slight of your own creation.

Yes, it outright states an adversarial position. The point I am trying to get across is that you can oppose a group without hating it. Given how much outrageous bullshit various churches have done in recent (and not so recent) years, it's easy to forget that, at its core, Christianity endorses that very thing: opposing those things which it espouses as being wrong without hating them in the process. It's just extremely unfortunate that so many who claim to be doing God's will etc. etc. utterly fail at making that distinction. Similarly, it's quite possible to have a negative opinion of some aspects of a person's life and actions without having that be the whole of your assessment of that person. (I might not like my friend's romantic choices, but he's still my friend.)

Judging a book by its cover isn't inherently a hateful action, either. It can be, certainly, but it can be motivated by other thought processes as well. If a jock doesn't pick a guy he only knows for being a bookworm first for his baseball team, it's probably not because he hates nerds; he probably just assumes the guy isn't any good at baseball. It's a near-baseless assumption to make and could be completely inaccurate, but it's not made out of hate for books or the people who love to read them. There are plenty of non-hateful idiotic assumptions people make about other people all the time based on tiny bits of information about them. Small-minded, shallow, petty, sure, but not evidence of hatred.
« Last Edit: April 30, 2012, 08:50:39 PM by Shjade »

Offline Etah dna Evol

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Re: Being against homosexuality is homophobic?
« Reply #182 on: April 30, 2012, 11:08:10 PM »
If I as a white-ish person said aloud that I just disliked black people and don't approve of their lifestyle, I would definitely be prejudice (by definition). Disapproving of the gay lifestyle is similar. Arguing the semantics between hate and fear is like entering the special Olympics without a disability and losing anyway >_<

Offline Shjade

Re: Being against homosexuality is homophobic?
« Reply #183 on: April 30, 2012, 11:57:26 PM »
If I as a white-ish person said aloud that I just disliked black people and don't approve of their lifestyle, I would definitely be prejudice (by definition). Disapproving of the gay lifestyle is similar. Arguing the semantics between hate and fear is like entering the special Olympics without a disability and losing anyway >_<

Sure. But would you definitely hate black people? Or are you just making judgments about them out of ignorance?

Your analogy is cute, but considering it's a thread that's pretty much all about defining words and their meanings, arguing semantics is basically the point, so...yeah. Very productive, that. (And who was arguing the difference between hate and fear, anyway?)

Offline Etah dna Evol

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Re: Being against homosexuality is homophobic?
« Reply #184 on: May 01, 2012, 12:14:04 AM »
The word prejudiced is semantically accurate

Offline Shjade

Re: Being against homosexuality is homophobic?
« Reply #185 on: May 01, 2012, 12:16:13 AM »
The word prejudiced is semantically accurate

What does that have to do with you mocking arguing semantics?

Offline Etah dna Evol

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Re: Being against homosexuality is homophobic?
« Reply #186 on: May 01, 2012, 03:05:24 AM »
Arguing Semantics is a pejorative phrase for a reason. It means rather than dealing with the actual claim you are arguing about the verbiage of an otherwise understood phrase. It's a weak argument. So I changed the language of the claim to be just as clear and more semantically accurate.

Offline Shjade

Re: Being against homosexuality is homophobic?
« Reply #187 on: May 01, 2012, 03:34:56 AM »
Arguing Semantics is a pejorative phrase for a reason. It means rather than dealing with the actual claim you are arguing about the verbiage of an otherwise understood phrase. It's a weak argument.

It's a weak argument unless the actual claim is the wording being used, in which case it is the entire point and calling it weak is just being unhelpful.

Liberal is also used as a pejorative phrase. That doesn't mean liberalism is actually a bad thing.

Offline Sophronius

Re: Being against homosexuality is homophobic?
« Reply #188 on: May 01, 2012, 07:04:09 AM »
I think part of the problem is that there are two meanings of dislike that are being used by Shjade.  On the one hand there is dislike meaning something along the lines of do not enjoy participating in - as in "I do not enjoy tomatoes" meaning I do not want to paticipate in their cultivation and consumption without passing any value judgement on those who do.  On the other, there is the use of dislike that holds the connotation of active disapproval - "I don't like French culture" meaning I disapprove of the language, cuisine, and lifestyle of that group. 

Now, the problem is not that you, or anyone, does not want to participate in homosexuality - no one is saying you have to.  The problem comes when you associate wrongness with the act.  To imply that homosexuality is wrong is a form of bigotry.  You can argue that it is not a form of hate because it does not entail violence or passioate rhetoric, but I do not understand how saying "what you do is wrong and you should not do it" is not hateful when directed at someone's sexuality.  I'll note that why you did not say that explicitly, your disapproval of homosexuality does imply/necessitate that view.

The problem also comes from a false equivalency.  Being gay is not the equivalent of being a person who speeds.  First of all, homosexuality is not a choice, one does not choose to be gay, while one who chooses to speed speeds.  Now, you can argue that it is a choce to act on one's homosexuality, and you would be right.  But again, there is a fundamental difference between acting on the inate human need for romantic love and acting one the desire to drive above a safe speed.

In short, expressing disapproval of an trait like sexuality is, without hesitation, bigoted.  To simply assert that you do not want to participate in it is not (that is also a statement whose value I do not understand, since all heterosexuals feel that way) .

Offline vtboy

Re: Being against homosexuality is homophobic?
« Reply #189 on: May 01, 2012, 09:14:13 AM »
Judging a book by its cover isn't inherently a hateful action, either. It can be, certainly, but it can be motivated by other thought processes as well. If a jock doesn't pick a guy he only knows for being a bookworm first for his baseball team, it's probably not because he hates nerds; he probably just assumes the guy isn't any good at baseball. It's a near-baseless assumption to make and could be completely inaccurate, but it's not made out of hate for books or the people who love to read them. There are plenty of non-hateful idiotic assumptions people make about other people all the time based on tiny bits of information about them. Small-minded, shallow, petty, sure, but not evidence of hatred.

Those involved in selecting baseball teams should never make "baseless" assumptions.

There is an important distinction, however, between the team manager who indulges an unreasoned assumption about the athletic talents of bookworms  and someone who is "against" homosexuality. The team manager has a personal interest in the outcome of the game.  It seems a far more dubious proposition, though, that someone who is against homosexuality is likely to be affected personally by what other people do with their sex organs. While both the manager and the person opposed to homosexuality may be laboring under unreasoned prejudices, it is only the the latter whose views are officious. In the absence of some personal stake (even a remote one), it is difficult to conceive of a situation where one's opposition to a thing is not the product of antipathy.

Being "against" something generally connotes more than merely eschewing personal participation. The term at least implies intolerance, and often an active or aggressive form of intolerance. Moreover, when the thing in issue is human behavior, the difference between disliking or hating the behavior and disliking or hating those who engage in it is often a nebulous one, especially when, as is so often the case, disapproval of the act becomes cause for oppression of the actor. It must be rather cold comfort for gays and lesbians that those who oppose legislation which would guarantee them equal civil rights or who would even criminalize their sexual practices, if given the chance, despise only the sin and not the sinners.

« Last Edit: May 01, 2012, 12:33:24 PM by vtboy »

Offline Will

Re: Being against homosexuality is homophobic?
« Reply #190 on: May 01, 2012, 01:17:47 PM »
Those involved in selecting baseball teams should never make "baseless" assumptions.
Rofl.

This all illustrates pretty well why analogies are a terrible way to debate.  No situation is exactly like another, and by trying to paint them as such, you assign connotations that have no business being assigned.  Then the discussion goes on a tangent as people point that fact out, and that gets debated ad nauseum.  Really, comparing homosexuality to speeding?  Trieste has already pointed out why that's bordering on (or wading knee deep into) offensive, and there are a number of other fundamental differences that have been explained as well.  And comparing sexual prejudice to picking a baseball team?  Now that is a cute analogy.  What could be more benign than picking a baseball team?  Random example is random, indeed.  Or is it?

Really, can we skip the analogies and just talk about the subject at hand? 

Offline Oniya

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Re: Being against homosexuality is homophobic?
« Reply #191 on: May 01, 2012, 01:46:51 PM »
And comparing sexual prejudice to picking a baseball team?  Now that is a cute analogy.  What could be more benign than picking a baseball team?  Random example is random, indeed.  Or is it?

Really, can we skip the analogies and just talk about the subject at hand?

Well, I have heard of describing someone whose sexuality is opposite to your own (particularly if they are also appealing to you, and therefore unavailable as a result) as 'playing for the other team'.  And then there's the talk about 'pitchers' and 'catchers'... ;D

Offline vtboy

Re: Being against homosexuality is homophobic?
« Reply #192 on: May 01, 2012, 02:37:42 PM »
Rofl.

This all illustrates pretty well why analogies are a terrible way to debate.  No situation is exactly like another, and by trying to paint them as such, you assign connotations that have no business being assigned.  Then the discussion goes on a tangent as people point that fact out, and that gets debated ad nauseum.  Really, comparing homosexuality to speeding?  Trieste has already pointed out why that's bordering on (or wading knee deep into) offensive, and there are a number of other fundamental differences that have been explained as well.  And comparing sexual prejudice to picking a baseball team?  Now that is a cute analogy.  What could be more benign than picking a baseball team?  Random example is random, indeed.  Or is it?

Really, can we skip the analogies and just talk about the subject at hand?

Fair enough. My point was only this: since those who are "against" homosexuality do not appear to have a personal stake in the matter, there would seem to be little other than antipathy to explain their judgments about it.

Online Khoraz

Re: Being against homosexuality is homophobic?
« Reply #193 on: May 01, 2012, 06:24:28 PM »
Speaking as a homosexual who has experienced (thankfully not a lot) of homophobic behaviour, I can say with some confidence that I think there is a definite difference between being 'against' homosexuals and being homophobic.

I have a few friends who are devout Catholics, so they disapprove of the relationships I have and we have argued occasionally about it. Despite this, we're still pretty good friends because there is no hate of me or my partner; I don't sit in front of them and flaunt how very gay I am, just like they don't sit and preach to me about how I'll apparently burn in Hell. They're against homosexuals and find it wrong, but they know they can't chance me and aren't threatened.

Compare that to a guy in a club who told me I was standing too close to him and that he didn't want to be touched by a fag. Its obvious which side is homophobic.

In my opinion, you can disapprove of something without completely hating; I disapprove of people who play obnoxiously loud music on the busses, but that's all. I don't get in a flap about it and complain and rage.

Basically, no; I don't think being against homosexuality makes you homophobic. In my experience, homophobes are cruel, sometimes violent because of one's sexuality... That's a lot different to just disagreeing with it.

Just my two cents.

Offline Shjade

Re: Being against homosexuality is homophobic?
« Reply #194 on: May 01, 2012, 08:11:37 PM »
The problem also comes from a false equivalency.  Being gay is not the equivalent of being a person who speeds.

This all illustrates pretty well why analogies are a terrible way to debate.  No situation is exactly like another, and by trying to paint them as such, you assign connotations that have no business being assigned.  Then the discussion goes on a tangent as people point that fact out, and that gets debated ad nauseum.  Really, comparing homosexuality to speeding?  Trieste has already pointed out why that's bordering on (or wading knee deep into) offensive, and there are a number of other fundamental differences that have been explained as well.  And comparing sexual prejudice to picking a baseball team?  Now that is a cute analogy.  What could be more benign than picking a baseball team?  Random example is random, indeed.  Or is it?

Sigh. I give up trying to explain the leaps you folks keep insisting on making when they take you to places I haven't gone. If you want to insist on being obtuse, fine, have fun with that.

Speaking as a homosexual who has experienced (thankfully not a lot) of homophobic behaviour, I can say with some confidence that I think there is a definite difference between being 'against' homosexuals and being homophobic.

In my opinion, you can disapprove of something without completely hating; I disapprove of people who play obnoxiously loud music on the busses, but that's all. I don't get in a flap about it and complain and rage.

Thank you. Unfortunately you're going to be criticized by someone for "comparing homosexuality to music and public transportation" very soon, so get ready for that.  ::)

On a tangentially related note: I have no problem with homosexuality, either in theory or practice. My beef is with the position that there are apparently only two legitimate positions to be taken: supportive or hateful. It's just not that simplistic a subject.

Offline Will

Re: Being against homosexuality is homophobic?
« Reply #195 on: May 01, 2012, 11:43:56 PM »
So you make leading statements in passing, and then get all bold and italic when people get upset about it?  Just because you didn't go there doesn't mean you didn't point the way.  We've made substantive points about your points, but all you can say is sigh...

Offline Shjade

Re: Being against homosexuality is homophobic?
« Reply #196 on: May 01, 2012, 11:52:28 PM »
I get bold and italic when my first two or three explanations that you're completely missing the point are also missed completely. Had to get your attention somehow.

Offline vtboy

Re: Being against homosexuality is homophobic?
« Reply #197 on: May 02, 2012, 08:15:34 AM »
Speaking as a homosexual who has experienced (thankfully not a lot) of homophobic behaviour, I can say with some confidence that I think there is a definite difference between being 'against' homosexuals and being homophobic.

I have a few friends who are devout Catholics, so they disapprove of the relationships I have and we have argued occasionally about it. Despite this, we're still pretty good friends because there is no hate of me or my partner; I don't sit in front of them and flaunt how very gay I am, just like they don't sit and preach to me about how I'll apparently burn in Hell. They're against homosexuals and find it wrong, but they know they can't chance me and aren't threatened.

Compare that to a guy in a club who told me I was standing too close to him and that he didn't want to be touched by a fag. Its obvious which side is homophobic.

In my opinion, you can disapprove of something without completely hating; I disapprove of people who play obnoxiously loud music on the busses, but that's all. I don't get in a flap about it and complain and rage.

Basically, no; I don't think being against homosexuality makes you homophobic. In my experience, homophobes are cruel, sometimes violent because of one's sexuality... That's a lot different to just disagreeing with it.

Just my two cents.

Let me preface what I'm about to say with the caution that I am in no way suggesting your devout Catholic friends do not love you or cherish the friendship. Human relationships are complicated things, and one can certainly love and admire a friend in spite of what one perceives to be the friend's faults. 

What I do question, though, is whether your friends' beliefs about the immorality of homosexuality is something more than mere dispassionate "disagreement". Must not your friends' beliefs necessarily lead them to consider you somehow less worthy than they would if you were a heterosexual? If your sexual orientation has no effect on their judgments about you, then what does it mean that they "disapprove of the relationships (you) have"? Is it really possible they do not think any the less of you for behavior they are convinced will, in God's good justice, lead to your eternal punishment? Is there not, at least, a touch of condescension in the hope they may persuade you to see the spiritual error of your ways?

The "antipathy" to which I've made reference in my posts expresses itself in violence and blatant cruelty against homosexuals only in what I hope are becoming increasingly rare instances. They are many other benchmarks on the antipathy spectrum, though. Opposition to legislation which would guarantee equal civil rights to homosexuals, in my view, is a less extreme variant of the same thing. Preaching it is evil to embrace one's sexual orientation is another.
« Last Edit: May 02, 2012, 10:37:38 AM by vtboy »

Offline TheGlyphstone

Re: Being against homosexuality is homophobic?
« Reply #198 on: May 02, 2012, 08:35:10 AM »

On a tangentially related note: I have no problem with homosexuality, either in theory or practice. My beef is with the position that there are apparently only two legitimate positions to be taken: supportive or hateful. It's just not that simplistic a subject.

Not to totally disrupt a fascinating argument with a tangent that makes me think about, but I'll do it anyways. What would one consider a person who personally disliked homosexuality for whatever reasons, but was still a dedicated backer of gay rights in a Voltaire-like sense of "I disapprove of what you sayare, but I will defend to the death your right to saybe it"?

Offline Trieste

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Re: Being against homosexuality is homophobic?
« Reply #199 on: May 02, 2012, 09:32:25 AM »
Not to totally disrupt a fascinating argument with a tangent that makes me think about, but I'll do it anyways. What would one consider a person who personally disliked homosexuality for whatever reasons, but was still a dedicated backer of gay rights in a Voltaire-like sense of "I disapprove of what you sayare, but I will defend to the death your right to saybe it"?

I believe we would call that person 'straight'. ::)