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Allan Schwartz, Ph.D.Allan Schwartz, Ph.D.
Dr. Schwartz's Weblog

Homosexuality and Intolerance: The Issue of Gay Adoptions

Allan N. Schwartz, LCSW, Ph.D. Updated: Nov 26th 2008

 The problem of intolerance and hatred of people who are homosexual is a many faceted problem. The problem ranges over complex and controversial issues from the rights of homosexuals to marry one another to the right of gay couples to adopt children. Then, people of various religious persuasions state that there are biblical prohibitions against being homosexual and, therefore, gay people are "choosing" to live in sin. All of this controversy takes place in an atmosphere of fear, hatred, intolerance and misunderstanding.
Some of this emotion can be read in the responses from readers to a posting I did some time ago entitled, "Being Gay, A life Style Choice?" You can find the posting and responses by clicking here:

/poc/view_index.php?idx=119&d=1&w=5&e=97#wl7277

The main point of the post is that people are "hard wired" to be gay and, therefore, there is no choice involved at all. Some if this bitter controversy was expressed in the Florida Court System yesterday:

Yesterday, Tuesday, November 25 2008 a Judge for the State of Florida ruled that a gay couple be permitted to adopt the two children in their custody. Florida, at the present time, has the most restrictive laws against gay adoption in the United States. At the trial testimony was taken from the American Medical Association, The American Psychiatric Association and the Pediatric Association. Experts from each of these association cited extensive research that gay men and women raising adopted children did no harm and that gay couples were just as stable as heterosexual couples. Attorneys for the prosecution are appealing the case and it is expected that it will go to Florida State Supreme Court. At issue is the constitutionality of the Florida law prohibiting gay adoptions.
The attorneys for the state presented testimony that children raised in homes with gay parents are more likely to become drug addicted and anti social. The judge dismissed all of this in his ruling.

In my experience as a psychotherapist I worked with gay male couples who were married and raising children. Why were they in couples and family counseling? The answer is, for the same reasons heterosexual couples enter couples therapy. The issues they faced had to do with things such as: How to handle money, finding time for one another after a long day of work and caring for the kids, how best to share the work load at home and how to remain united when the children are challenging and attempting to find ways to "divide and conquer." In other words, how to be consistent and steady and realistic with discipline.

These issues were no different form the ones I experienced in working with heterosexual couples. In fact, the individuals concerned, whether gay or heterosexual, were steady, level headed, responsible and moral. In no case were any of the couples or individual concerned involved in alcohol or drug abuse. As a matter of fact, the couples were all professionals at work. What I mean is that whether the couples were gay or heterosexual, they were lawyers, medical doctors, psychologists and high powered business people.

For those who counter this discussion with biblical quotes there are two ways I can reply:

1. This is a psychology website. The field of psychology uses the scientific method and, as such, we look at hard data from controlled surveys and experiments. We do not start with any a priori notions or ideas unless we are scientifically exploring a theory. However, even that theory has to be based on prior hard fact and not undocumented opinions. In all of this, we also look at case studies, although even those must be put up to close scrutiny in the research process. With all due respect to those who are religious, and from my point of view as someone who had worked in mental health for three decades, religious convictions are important to people in their private lives but has no place when attempting to be scientific. Faith is important but, in science, we cannot rely on Faith because we need hard date.

2. I have known a few gay people who are also extremely religious Christians and are well versed in scriptures, whereas I am not. These individuals are able to counter every to quote every biblical prohibition against homosexuality with equally relevant and powerful biblical quotes prohibiting hatred and intolerance and demanding respect for the lives of all people.

Number Two is my main point. We live in a world where time and distance between diverse people has closed. When I get E. Mail questions from people in Pakistan and India and am able to immediately reply I am reminded of how small a world it really now is. Therefore, we must learn to accept the fact that there are many people different form ourselves.

There are too many unwanted children in the world. It seems logical to me that good people who want to adopt and raise these youngsters should be allowed to.

At the same time, it seems to me that gay people who want to marry should be allowed to.

What are your thoughts and opinions about this important issue?

Allan N. Schwartz, PhD

 

Allan Schwartz, LCSW, Ph.D.

Readers who live in the Boulder, Colorado metro area, or in Southwest Florida may contact Dr. Schwartz for face-to-face consultation. He is also available for psychotherapy through Skype video for those who are not in Florida or Colorado. He can be reached via email at dransphd@aol.com for details.

    Reader Comments
    Discuss this issue below or in our forums.

    why can't people be them self - tolerant of all - Dec 13th 2011

    okay i get how you (who are against) feel about same sex relationships that are intimate. even then i find it difficult you are so 2d i mean i understand your opinion it's not for you but thats just it it's NOT FOR YOU, it's a different story for some of your friends, family, and neighbors. is it wrong to be different i don't think it is. say we did not allow children with birth defects to live because they are not "normal" or "it's not right" in someones opinion. that child could be yours and you could love them no matter what and believe there is nothing wrong with your child. well i love all my friends family and neighbors no matter how they are because thats them and i am truly glad they are different i want a 3d world where we all can be our self and be tolerant of everyone and live in peace but it's this trivial crap that prevents us all from peace.

    p.s

    not so tolerant of killers and rapest because they are wrong. and dislike so many are intolerant of others when your just as different to them as they are to you.

    sigh... - - Mar 27th 2011

    i make no apologises for this im sick if this deluded crap! what god says No its what you say is wrong! the bible an god is man made its fact.. homosexuality is in almost all beings in this planet not just humans. an to call homosexuality wrong is to call all thou`s living loving things wrong! if you think they are wrong then so are you becouse homosexuality is not just about sex it is the very definition of both love an friendship right next to hetrosexuality if you have a friend that is the same sex as you then you are taking part in a homosexual act even thou you my not be having sex it is apart of homosexuality or you would have very little if any love for that person if homosexuality was gone no same-sex friendship would ever be as strong ever! not that homosexality will ever be gone it has been around longer than any "god"! as long as life it self god was created by man only a fue thoused years ago to fuel a fat mans greed that thing you call god has nothing on life and fact. never will! you want to believe that fanatical greedy selfish unmoral crype go right a head! call me as a living being wrong then your disgusting! i spitt at you!!

    Biblical Support - - Nov 13th 2009

    "These individuals are able to counter every to quote every biblical prohibition against homosexuality with equally relevant and powerful biblical quotes prohibiting hatred and intolerance and demanding respect for the lives of all people."

    While I agree that it is wrong for people to hate and disrespect others, that doesn't take away what God says about homosexuality. It is still wrong. Period.

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