Everyone has his own spin on the current controversy.
Prominent gay writer Andrew Sullivan, in
an article in his blog The Daily Dish
in The Atlantic
on the sex abuse
scandal and the Catholic Church, argues that “if homosexuality were regarded in
Catholic theology as a healthy and rare difference rather than as a shameful
disorder, … these crimes would for the most part disappear.”

The Catholic Church is never going to change its
teaching on marriage as the union of one man and one woman or on the sinfulness
of sexual relations outside marriage – whether between men and women or persons
of the same sex, but I would like to focus on the word “healthy” because there
is nothing “healthy” about the gay lifestyle, as Mr. Sullivan, who is HIV
positive, very well knows.

Study after study has shown that men with same-sex
attraction (SSA) are more likely to have psychological disorders, substance
abuse problems, and suicidal ideation and attempts.

While we don’t hear much about it anymore, the HIV
epidemic among men who have sex with men (MSM) continues unabated.  In
2006, the number of new infections reported among young MSM rose by 18%. New
drugs have turned infection with HIV from a near certain death sentence into a
chronic disease, but the spread of drug resistant mutations threaten that
success. These drug resistant strains are spreading because HIV positive men
choose to engage in unprotected sex.

HIV is not the only disease MSM have to worry about,
besides syphilis, gonorrhea, Chlamydia, cancer causing HPV, hepatitis A, B,
& C, and herpes, there has been a resurgence of Kaposi sarcoma,
lymphogranuloma venereum, and shigellosis. Outbreaks of MSRA (the flesh eating
bacteria) have been traced to homosexual activity.

The media image of happy male couples, lining up to be
married, contrasts sharply with the reality of rampant promiscuity. MSM,
whether in relationships or not, have numerous sexual partners. They have sex
with strangers in public places, bathhouses, gay bars, and Tearooms. They troll
for sex on Internet sites like Manhunt. They attended huge circuit parties
where music, drugs and sex are the main attraction. There is an epidemic of
addiction to crystal meth among MSM and widespread use of other drugs including
ecstasy, ketamine, poppers, GHB, and cocaine. The combination of drugs,
promiscuity, and the number of STDs circulating in the gay community creates a
perfect storm.

A few gay men have pointed out the folly of this
behavior. In an article entitled: “Society now accepts gay men as equals. So
why on earth do so many continue to behave like teenagers,” Simon Fenshawe
writes: “Hooked on drugs and sex and looks, we call it gay culture. The figures
are staggering: 20% of gay men in London use the incredibly damaging crystal
meth. Studies show that men who do are twice as likely to become HIV positive.
Since 1999, the figures for HIV infections have continued to rise in the UK.
Syphilis infection rates among gay men have increased by 616% in the past five

The message fell on deaf ears. The gay community has
become more defiant in its rejection of “moralizing” and adamant in its
glorification of sex. The more acceptance the gay agenda receives, the less the
media covers the problems, and the worse things become.

Sullivan has been a vocal proponent of changing the
legal definition of and the Church’s teachings on marriage to include same-sex
couples. He argued that all he wanted was to marry the man he loved. However, a just released study Beyond Monogamy: Lessons from Long-Term Male Couples in Non-Monogamous
reveals that promiscuity represents the norm among
male couples. According to other studies, 75% of male couples are in
“successful open relationships.”

Beyond Monogamy goes into explicit detail. These
are not occasional flings but a consistent pattern of negotiated sexual
activity outside the relationship, sometimes with strangers at public venues or
pick ups from bars. 41% of the men in the study reported engaging in “sex with
partner and others” (threesomes). One third of the men in the study were HIV

Sullivan is right on one thing: the “failure of the
church to come to terms with … sexual orientation.” Many in clergy erroneously
believe that SSA is biologically determined and unchangeable, even though there
are no replicated scientific studies to support this belief and massive
evidence, including identical twins studies, refuting it. Each man with SSA has
his own personal history, but in that history, we can often see the roots of
the problem. These can include: a failure to identify with his father or
same-sex peers; a sense of inferiority or unmasculinity; a failure to form a
healthy attachment to his mother in early life; and a history of childhood
sexual abuse. Some gay men realize that the obvious self-destructive behaviors
spring from unmet needs or a desire to connect with their lost manhood.

The Christian community should have put its
considerable resources behind educating the public as to the true causes and
nature of SSA, the means of prevention, and the possibilities for effective
treatment. If we had, the public might understand the why the church regards
this “inclination” as “objectively disordered” and why these teachings cannot
be changed.

Michael Cook

Michael Cook is the editor of MercatorNet. He lives in Sydney, Australia.