Thursday, July 21, 2005

Promoting monogamy

Another fabulous editorial in the Arizona Daily Star today, in response to a recent study done in Pima County that found a rise in HIV infection rates and, a researcher claims, a correlating rise in risky behavior among gay men.

Without getting into the veracity of the study, I think we can all agree that risky behavior is a bad thing. Promiscuous behavior, especially without protection, is something we should be fighting to prevent. This is another reason I don't totally understand the "conservative" stance against same-sex marriage. Quoting from the Star editorial:

One of the new study's findings was that men who were interviewed feared old age and being alone. Creating a stable, legal way for homosexual people to form solid, long-term families can help, then, in the fight against risky behavior. Promoting monogamy and waiting for sex until marriage is part of the prevention message aimed at straight people. That message should apply to gay people, as well.

Amen! If I, as a conservative, think that monogamy is a good thing and that permanent, committed relationships are a good thing, wouldn't I want to encourage that for others? Even for those who disapprove of same-sex relationships, isn't same-sex monogamy at least better than same-sex promiscuity?

I think a lot of it is simply a matter of being uncomfortable with the reality that a lot of gay people are just like a lot of straight people. They want to find their soul-mate, settle down, have 2.5 kids and a mortgage. This is somehow more threatening than the stereotype of anonymous trysts in the men's room and the idea that LGBT people have hundreds of sexual partners a year. I'm sure this is true for some (well, maybe not hundreds, but multiple partners anyway). It's true for some straight people, too.

One of my favorite images from the San Francisco weddings last year was a photo of a man waiting to get his marriage license with his partner beside him and a baby in a carrier strapped to his chest. This is what I'm fighting for, the right of this couple to be who they are, to have the kind of life I can take for granted. It's proof that the stereotypes just don't hold water, and that sexual orientation and promiscuity are not linked. There are monogamous gay people and there are monogamous straight people. There are promiscuous gay people and promiscuous straight people.

As a conservative, one who believes strongly in the institution of marriage and the concept of vowing fidelity to one person for life, I want that option available to my GLBT brothers and sisters as well. I challenge anyone who seriously believes in the sanctity of marriage to open their hearts and minds to allow that option for everyone, rather than placing obstacles in the way that make commitment, difficult even in the most supportive of circumstances, even harder.

Let's encourage monogamy and safe-sex practices by, to paraphrase the editorial, creating a stable and legal foundation for same-sex couples and their families.


At 10:51 PM, Blogger freethnkr said...

LOL. The stereotype of "hundreds of partners" is the one that always gets me. As a gay man who can count his number of partners on one hand and still have fingers left over... I feel so cheated!! :)

I just found your blog tonight. I will definitely be back to read more.

I also want to say thanks for the support.


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