Untruth: Being Gay, Lesbian, or Bisexual is a matter of conscious choice.
Fact: Being Gay, Lesbian or Bisexual is a complex process that is determined at an early age. It is more than with whom one has sex and is defined by emotions, self-concept, and social identity. Research has consistently shown that sexual orientation is determined prior to birth. An individual’s orientation is set and there are no ethical or credible methods: psychological or medical by which to change this.
Untruth: People who are Gay, Lesbian, or Bisexual are mentally ill.
Fact: Psychological research demonstrates that emotional problems are no more prevalent in people who are Gay, Lesbian, or Bisexual than they are in people who are Straight. The American Psychological Association, American Psychiatric Association, American Medical Association, and American Nurses Association all officially state that being Gay, Lesbian, or Bisexual is a normal variation of human sexuality and does not imply mental illness of any kind. People who are Gay, Lesbian, or Bisexual may have emotional problem, however, because of society’s hatred and intolerance of them. Discrimination, loss of civil rights, and threats of violence cause many individuals to hide their identities and to live in fear.
Untruth: People who are Gay, Lesbian, or Bisexual should try to be cured.
Fact: Since being Gay, Lesbian, or Bisexual is not an illness, there is no cure.
Untruth: People who are Gay, Lesbian, or Bisexual molest children.
Fact: Child molestation is a crime of violence not sex and is unrelated to sexual orientation. Police records show, however, that over 90% of child molesters are adult, male, white, and Straight (Department of Health, Education, & Welfare, 1989).
Untruth: People who are Gay, Lesbian, or Bisexual are promiscuous and have no family values.
Fact: People who are Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, or Straight have a range of sexual behaviors which range from promiscuity to strictly monogamous. Many people who are Gay, Lesbian, or Bisexual, or Straight cherish and practice traditional family values of support, love, understanding, mutual respect, and community. Discrimination, prejudice, and hate are not family values.
Untruth: People who are Gay, Lesbian, or Bisexual should not be allowed to raise children.
Fact: Children raised by parents who are Gay, Lesbian, or Bisexual and children raised by parents who are Straight show no differences between the two groups of children in their intelligence, psychological adjustment, popularity with friends, development of sex role identity, or development of sexual orientation. (Biaggio, 1993).
Untruth: The Bible condemns people who are Gay, Lesbian, or Bisexual.
Fact: Often the story of Sodom and Gomarrah is used to demonstrate God’s rejection of people who are Gay, Lesbian, or Bisexual. Only in the King James translation is sex between men mentioned. The original Hebrew makes no mention of this and attributes God’s destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah to: selfishness, pridefulness, and neglect of the poor. There are numerous religious bodies which have policies and/or procedures supportive of people who are Gay, Lesbian, or Bisexual: American Baptist Churches, Disciples of Christ, Episcopal Church, Metropolitan Community Churches, Presbyterian Church, U.S.A. Reform Judaism, Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ and the Latter Day Saints, Society of Friends, Unitarian Universalist Church of Christ, and the United Methodist Church.
Untruth: People who are Gay, Lesbian, or Bisexual want to be treated like a minority, but they are not a minority as are People of Color.
Fact: People who are Gay, Lesbian, or Bisexual are a numerical minority in society. As a result, they face job loss, eviction, non-service in public places, harassment, physical assault, and murder. A U.S. Department of Justice report stated that, “homosexuals are the most frequent victims” of hate crimes (U.S. Department of Justice, 1987). Minority Status grants no extra or special benefits to anyone. Rather, minority status attempts to ensure constitutionally guaranteed freedoms, including equal protection under the law.
Untruth: People who are Straight can become Gay, Lesbian, or Bisexual through exposure or recruitment.
Fact: Being Gay, Lesbian, or Bisexual, or Straight is not the common cold. It is not communicable. Research shows that people may be born Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, or Straight and there is no reliable or valid method by which to make them otherwise.
Untruth: Homophobia and Biphobia are an appropriate response to people who are immoral, unnatural, and perverse.
Fact: Homophobia and biphobia are irrational fears of the unknown. It is a consequence of lack of or incorrect information about people. Research shows that people who have homophobic and biphobic attitudes do not know or have never met a person who is Gay, Lesbian, or Bisexual. Homophobia and biphobia are the same as racism, sexism, ageism, classism, ableism, etc.