The most controversial conclusion Andrew Marin has come to, found in his new book, Love Is an Orientation: Elevating the Conversation With the Gay Community , is the connection in the gay community between personal identity and sexual behavior.
Before I attempt to describe his conclusion, I want to mention that I know Andrew is sitting on one of the most complete statistical studies ever done within the gay and lesbian communities. The study remains unpublished to this point, but I will give him the benefit of doubt of operating on the basis of data instead of anecdotal opinion when it comes to identity.
What do you think of his connection of behavior and identity among gays and lesbians?
“Christians,” Andrew observes, tend to see three options: “be heterosexual, be celibate or live in sin” (36). And once Christians say these things, it’s up to the gay and lesbian person to make his or her choice. Job done.
The theme of this chp works like this: Sexual desire and behaviors are inherent to and important to humans; gays and lesbians have a sexual desire and seek behaviors that are same-sex; therefore, the desires and behaviors are in their identity. The Christian identity, Andrew argues, and Christian behaviors are not always connected — they are two different things (38). But in the GLBT their sexual desires and behaviors set them apart and therefore define them in a unique way. Therefore, to criticize their behaviors is to criticize who they are (38). Andrew pleads with Christians to recognize this in order to be “with” the GLBT community. Instead of fighting the gay gene vs. environment debate, Andrew argues for presence — the power of “with.”
In this chp Andrew discusses the issue of whether or not abuse is involved in the development of same-sex attraction. Some — and the numbers are not signficant Andrew says — choose same-sex behaviors because of abuse. His numbers are 7-15%.