The simple reality that thousands — perhaps one day, millions — of gay couples seek monogamy in marriage angers and terrifies the antigay and ex-gay activists of Focus on the Family.
Public awareness of gay monogamy and the gradual recognition of gay marriage have undermined right-wing superstitions that form the very foundation of antigay ideology. Meanwhile, gay monogamy — which has existed for centuries but became prominent with the rise of HIV/AIDS — has also brought into focus (by sheer contrast) the moral irresponsibility of ex-gay activists who blame their past and present “promiscuity” on sexual orientation rather than their own poor self-discipline.
With those trends in mind, a new article in Focus’s Boundless magazine for young adults takes up James Dobson’s battle to smear gay monogamy and obsess over gay male sexuality.
Focus operative and anti-marriage activist Candice Watters pens a rant whose very title is a strawman argument: “What They Mean by Monogamy.” Her agenda: Turn monogamous gay couples into bogeymen who are to be shunned, distrusted, and feared without justification.
While the public increasingly learns the truth about gay couples from family, friends, and the media, the myth of universal gay “promiscuity” stubbornly persists among antigay ideologues who, like Watters, turn their blanket contempt of gay people into a self-contained religion whose tenets are gradually losing touch with traditional faith. Watters reminds us that the antigay religion of Focus on the Family rests upon these shaky dogmas:
- a sexist assumption that all men lack self-discipline and experience uncontrollable lust which can only be moderated by a woman and by faith in a politically Republican, morally superficial distortion of Jesus Christ.
- a myth that gay-pride floats are somehow more representative of ordinary gay people than Mardi Gras floats are of ordinary heterosexual people
Implicit but unstated in Watters’ article is Focus’ prescribed solution: Expensive and time-consuming ex-gay therapy that is based upon these additional fraudulent dogmas:
- a myth that falsely equates homosexuality with swishy or oversexualized men and butchy women
- a myth that boys who are “effeminate” and girls who are “masculine” are likely to be homosexual
- a myth that blames youth gender variance on insufficiently macho fathers, insufficiently feminine mothers, and often-nonexistent molesters
- a fear of people who are born with biological or psychological attributes of the presumed opposite gender
None of these myths or fears has any material basis in the antigay movement’s supposed source of moral and religious authority, the Bible. (And if these myths did have a biblical basis, that would simply indicate that the Bible is not infallible.)
Yet Watters and Focus on the Family proclaim these myths to be dogmatic Truth in their religion.
Watters claims to offer proof that when homosexuals talk about monogamy, they don’t really mean it. But her proof includes no objective or factual information sources that might discredit gay couples who claim to be monogamous. Instead, Watters relies solely upon two unsubstantiated and polemical articles, one by antigay activist David Benkof and the other by NARTH, an exgay advocacy group consisting of antigay therapists who charge big bucks to cash in on clients’ self-hatred.
Watters hinges the supposed strength of her own faith and morality upon a need to belittle the “faithfulness” and the monogamy of others. Her parroting of unbiblical and malicious superstitions about others, her finger-pointing, and her efforts to elevate her own supposed moral standing by smearing other classes of people, all indicate that Watters suffers from personal and spiritual insecurities.
Such immaturity and divisive partisan warfare against rivals’ positive virtues may be alienating ordinary Americans and even many evangelicals — the religious right’s donations have been declining in recent years — but Focus shows no sign of repentance. Perhaps Focus believes its sinfulness is synonymous with Christian faithfulness.