Thursday, April 03, 2008

Day of Silence coming up. Let's get ready

Bet you thought I was going to post another entry on Sally Kern.

No, that little controversy is one for the ages. I'm sure it will come up again but for now, there is nothing new to add.

Especially in light of the fact that there are so many more important things to focus on.

On the 25th of this month is the annual Day of Silence. Its webpage says:

The Day of Silence (, a project of the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network (GLSEN), is a student-led day of action where those who in which concerned students, from middle school to college, take some form of a vow of silence to bring attention to the name-calling, bullying and harassment -- in effect, the silencing -- experienced by LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender) students and their allies.

Naturally the anti-gay industry will have their hooks out trying to disrupt the day. This year, they will be launching a two-prong attack.

Anti-gay industry groups are encouraging parents to keep their children out of school during the Day of Silence.

Then the day after, they hold what they call "The Day of Truth."

According to the Allied Defense Fund, the group sponsoring it, Day of Truth:

was established to counter the promotion of the homosexual agenda and express an opposing viewpoint from a Christian perspective.

This of course is a huge lie.

ADF actually encourages children to repeat Paul Cameronesque lies about lgbts during this day. One of their resources is The Ten Biggest Myths of Homosexual Behavior.

The only myth is that the information in this packet is accurate.

The handout claims that "homosexual behavior is at much higher risk for many sexually transmitted diseases, including not just HIV, but also syphilis, gonorrhea, human papilloma virus (HPV), hepatitis, chlamydia, and a whole group of infections called ‘gay bowel syndrome.’ But "gay bowel syndrome" is an obsolete medical term that medical practitioners do not use.

The handout also uses two bad studies put out by anti-gay industry groups. The studies, The Negative Effects of Gay Sex by John R. Diggs and The Negative Health Effects of Homosexuality by Timothy Dailey, contains a multitude of errors:

The Negative Effects of Gay Sex

Twice, John R. Diggs includes the study done by Alan Bell and Martin Weinberg in their book, Homosexualities: A Study of Diversity Among Men and Women, as indicative of the entire gay population. In one passage, he even refers to it as “a far ranging study of homosexual men . . .” But Bell and Weinberg never said that their findings were indicative of all gay men. They actually said “. . . given the variety of circumstances which discourage homosexuals from participating in research studies, it is unlikely that any investigator willever be in a position to say that this or that is true of a given percentage of all homosexuals.”

Diggs cites a Canadian study twice in order to claim that gays have a shorter lifespan than heterosexuals. But his citation of the study is a mischaracterization. In 2001, the six original researchers (Robert S. Hogg, Stefan A. Strathdee, Kevin J.P. Craib, Michael V. O’Shaughnessy, Julion Montaner, and Martin T. Schechter) who conducted that study have gone on record saying that religious conservatives (like Diggs) was distorting their work.

In another section entitled Physical Health, Diggs claims that gays are victims of “gay bowel syndrome.” The term is an obsolete medical term. exist and even the CDC does not use it. In fact, if one was to look at the endnotes of Diggs’ study, he would find that two of the sources he quoted concerning “gay bowel syndrome” were from articles in published in 1976 and 1983, which is consistent with the years that the term existed. One last source was a letter to the editor printed in 1994 but Diggs does not make it clear as to whatwere the circumstances surrounding it.

He generalizes convenience sample studies as indicative of the gay population at large. Diggs takes studies done in foreign countries and claims that they are indicative of the gay population at large.

Diggs claims that there are five distinctions between heterosexual and homosexual populations including levels of promiscuity, physical health, mental health, lifespan, and monogamy. However, he spends very little time comparing the two dynamics. He uses all of his time castigating gay populations.

He uses an out of date book, The Gay Report (published in 1979) to claim that gays are engaging in deviant sexual practices. Only once does he attempt to tie the alleged deviant practices of gays in 1979 to present day; and to do so, he cites two events that took place regarding bondage workshops. However, there is a strong indication that heterosexuals took part in these events as well as gays. Diggs ignores this dynamic.

The Negative Effects of Homosexuality

Timothy Dailey use a 1985 survey of lesbians at a Michigan music festival to claim that lesbians have a high rate of domestic violence. However, according to the reviewer of the study, Suzana Rose, Ph.D., of the 1099 lesbians participants, most were white and between the ages of 20-45. She also said: “Questions concerning perpetrating abuse need to distinguish between actions taken in self-defense and actions initiated by the aggressor. This point was not assessed here. Findings are limited by the selective recruiting of participants.”

Dailey also uses the Weinberg and Bell book to claim that all gay men are promiscuous despite the fact that both authors said their work was not indicative of all gay men.

Dailey uses the term “gay bowel syndrome”

Dailey cites a study that says young gay men are in danger of catching disease at a high rate. He omits the part of the study that said they need places to build their self esteem as homosexuals. In addition, he performs mathematical manipulation on percentages gauged in legitimate studies in order to push forth a higher image of gay men catching diseases.

He generalizes convenience sample studies as indicative of the gay population at large.

For more information, check out this excellent video by Wayne Besen who breaks it down on a level we can all understand.

The Day of Truth is anything but truth.