We would like to thank Michael Norris for his excellent letter on the topic of “Homosexual misconceptions.” He did his homework and pointed out the facts in his rebuttal to John Hebert’s earlier letter.
We would also point out that there is no more of a singular “lesbian, gay, bisexual and trangender lifestyle” than there is a singular heterosexual, or white or black lifestyle. Rather, lifestyles vary across the board in such matters as modest, lavish, outgoing, reclusive, religious, secular, lazy, conservative, reckless, etc. As for choice, whether or not one is lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender or heterosexual, it is no more a matter of choice than is hair or eye color. It is interesting to pose the question to heterosexuals as to when they decided to be heterosexual. The most frequent response is “I didn’t choose, I was born that way.” That is the response you also get from homosexuals. Why would anyone choose to be something one was not if it is going to cause one to be discriminated against, ostracized, disowned by one’s family or mentally or physically abused or even killed?
Homophobia, the fear of homosexuals, can have as destructive an effect on heterosexuals as it does on homosexuals. The families of those individuals who are shunned suffer from the breakups. The parents of Matthew Shepard, who was killed, suffered. The families of all those individuals who commit suicide, because they are bullied, suffer.
PFLAG (Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays) is a national organization with over 200,000 members and supporters and over 350 affiliates in the United States. PFLAG’s mission is to promote the health and well-being of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people, their families and friends through support, to cope with an adverse society; education, to enlighten an ill-informed public; and advocacy, to end discrimination and to secure equal civil rights. PFLAG provides opportunity for dialogue about sexual orientation and gender identity, and acts to create a society that is healthy and respectful of human diversity.
For more information about local PFLAG chapters, meetings, events, etc., please visit the websites at: www.pflagno.org and www.pflagofgbr.org.
Joe Melcher, co-president
Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays - New Orleans