Positive Atheism's Stance
On Homosexuality
George Broadhead

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From: "Positive Atheism Magazine" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
To: "George Broadhead"
Subject: Re: Positive Atheism's stance on homosexuality
Date: Saturday, December 30, 2000 6:09 PM

Without looking up the web sites you mentioned, here is our current position:

Homosexuals are no different from anybody, and deserve the full rights that anybody deserves, on the same terms as anybody.

Since Liberty is always associated with the concept of responsibility, homosexuals must be held to the same standards to which a society holds the members of its majority.

Homosexual couples and family groups (as well as polygamous families) ought to enjoy any special privileges granted to heterosexual marriages. If governments are unwilling to grant to these other family situations the same rights enjoyed by heterosexual couples, then perhaps it is time to reconsider giving those favors to heterosexual couples.

It might not be wise for the government to call such unions "marriages," but whatever they're called, they need to involve all of the special privileges and all of the grave responsibilities enjoyed by heterosexual marriages. Perhaps it would be good for legal language to abandon the term "marriage" so as to include less common and more controversial family unions.

We pay very close attention to the struggle for lesbian and gay rights, because any successes you accomplish might serve to further our own struggle for rights and dignity and our struggle against bigotry. You see, more Americans think it is okay to discriminate against an atheist than think it is okay to discriminate against a homosexual. Fewer Americans would vote for an atheist for President than would vote for a homosexual. Thus, apart from the point about family unions, the struggle of the homosexual is the very struggle of the atheist.

But, people are people. Just as there are atheists who cannot stomach the thought of someone being a homosexual, there are homosexuals who eagerly try to convert atheists to some form of religious faith. I had this happen to me as recently as yesterday. Thus, it is crucial to go back to the roots of the concept of Liberty -- back to Mary Wollstonecraft and Thomas Paine and the like -- and to, as individuals and groups, see what we can do to clean up our own side of the street first, and then go over to visit our neighbors, hopefully on their own terms.

Cliff Walker
"Positive Atheism" Magazine
Five years of service to
     people with no reason to believe

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