As part of Home for the Weekend series, this program presents excerpts and highlights from a public session in Fargo, discussing homosexuality in society. Among the attendees were clergy, counselors and mental health officials. Program includes speeches, interviews and segments of music.
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We are in fact here poking about human dignity and the greatest literature the greatest off reminders of man. Everything worth having in this life. I that's Paul Bailey novelist and English instructor North Dakota State University talking to over 300 clergy counselors and mental health professionals at a public program on homosexuality in our society out last week and 5 this morning. I'm home for the weekend. We're going to hear excerpts and highlights from that public program. The event was sponsored by the Cass County Mental Health Association with the financial assistance of the North Dakota committee on the humanities and public issues and was incidentally the first program of its kind sponsored by such organizations. Stephanie Johnson attended the day-long event and produced this morning's program. Advocacy or condemnation of homosexuality wasn't the purpose of the Fargo program rather was to clarify the nature of homosexuality and to explore some of the special problems of that sexual orientation images for the session a rose out of concern for the mental health of homosexuals in our area. They experienced a great deal of stress because of the stigma attached to their sexual preference. Prior to the program local mental health professionals noticed an increase in mental health problems occurring among our homosexual population those problems range from drug abuse to suicide today. We are few highlights from that program on homosexuality in our society. You'll hear from dr. Phyllis Lyon of San Francisco's Institute for advanced study of human sexuality also from dr. Ralph Blair psychotherapist in director of New York City's homosexual Community Counseling Center. Finally, you'll hear from local clergy discussing how we lived in views homosexuality first Phyllis Lyon. Homosexuality which in essence means the love of man for men and women for women is probably the most misunderstood and myth written subject in the western world. And nowhere. Is it as controversial as in our own United States? Actually, it's more it's really an anti sexual culture. That impinge has a great deal on homosexuals, but also a great deal on heterosexual. So what I want to do this morning is to define the terms that will be using during this day. And to give you a definition as I see it. Anyway, I've who the homosexual woman and man are a homosexual then. Is a person woman or man whose primary interest? Is in a person of the same sex and that primary interest includes socially psychologically emotionally and sexually all of those components. And that interest is there whether or not it is ever expressed. overtly most often in the past. It has been only the three letters sex and homosexuality that have been used to define us. As if homosexuals existed only as sexual beings with no other dimensions. But homosexuals like heterosexuals going mini faceted person. We are on minority characterized by our diversity. In so far as can be determined we make up about 10% of the population. Which translates into some 20 million American people? A large minority in deed to be treated with a fear reversion in scoring that so often we find present and that 10% comprises a cross-section of our society where president every ethnic group and every economic and educational sphere and every age group and we're equally divided among the Sexes. There is a vast diversity of of occupations in which we serve our country. and were there whether anybody wants to see or not? Is dr. John Gannon put it in his book called human sexualities. Quote what needs to be understood is it there isn't one homosexuality but a multiplicity of ways of organizing a homosexual preference into other ongoing Lifestyles and commitments. There are moments in people's lives when they are operating entirely within the limits expressed by being homosexual. And other moments with their homosexuality indeed any aspect of their sexuality is irrelevant. But some people their sexuality is present important or erupted in every circumstance either for their entire lives or for a certain period in their lives for others. It is a matter of minimum significance in all circumstances. I'm close. So then it is possible for a person to self Define him or herself as a homosexual without ever expressing those feelings. Sexually. For some reason or other Eye Society has no difficulty in assuming the heterosexuality of those persons who are not sexually active yet. We are loath to give that same freedom to the homosexual. There are a large number. Oklahoma sexually-oriented women and men whose only or predominate sexualitt is heterosexual. Those are the people who for a variety of reasons have chosen to marry members of the opposite sex. But it is not the sexual act alone. Which defines it. I find out any extremely important thing to understand. And I think that that the Kinsey scale innocence is defining numbers in a way primarily through sexual activity, but each and every one of you in this room. Could tonight have sex with a person of the same sex or a person of the opposite sex without changing your basic heterosexual or homosexual orientation? Sexual identity sexual orientation lies in The Head and the Heart and not in the genitals. So far I have used the word homosexual to include both women and men who prefer same-sex relationships. And that's a perfectly correct usage. But sometimes it leads to incorrect assumptions. because for the most part people think of homosexuals as males and it's for this reason that the lesbian is most often used when referring to homosexual women. homosexuals have often been called The Invisible minority But really it's the lesbian who is invisible. Non-fiction books and articles and research have been almost exclusively devoted to the male homosexual with perhaps a chapter or two or an incidental mention of a lesbian. The implication is either that what is said applies equally to female homosexuals or that the lesbian because she is a woman is just not that important. It's true that the male homosexual in the lesbian have many common concerns, but the lesbian difference greatly from the male homosexual and attitudes problems Lifestyles. There's that same basic Battle of the Sexes explain the differences between women and men carry through and in all spheres know something about what we talkin about. Let's look at some of the more pervasive mythology which surrounds a women and men There are a lot of them are the ones I'm going to talk about. I think of the primary ones that are concerning people all over. Throughout the country those forces which would take away the hard ones civil rights of homosexuals are trumpeting that homosexuality is a threat to the nuclear family. The fact is that homosexuals of both sexes share the same values as a family's which reared them they to have mothers fathers sisters brothers and uncles and for whom they love and care. Many gay women and men have children of their own from previous heterosexual relationships. When gay people live with their children with their children in a partner or just with a partner they consider themselves a family unit. Respect for the family love caring and commitment. Lead both homosexuals and heterosexuals to establish stable and long-term relationships. The lack of or the presence of children in a family whether it's a heterosexual or homosexual family has nothing to do with sexual orientation or with the basic validity of the nuclear family. Most lesbian mothers and gay fathers having been the victim of heavy homosexual heterosexual proselytizing all their lives are less likely to be uptight about the sexuality of their offspring. And experts in the field of gender identity like doctors Richard green and John money has have testified. There is no evidence to indicate that children raised in homosexual homes will necessarily become gay, but rather that they will probably grow up to be more tolerant and accepting of different people and different lifestyles. neither homosexuals or heterosexuals can recruit children Dr. Green and dr. Money agreed as do other experts that a child sexual orientation is determined between the ages of 2 and 6. That's the 10% of the population who are homosexual develop their orientation at an early age and if they later become actively Homosexual is because they were already inclined to that orientation in their human development. It isn't founded fear of recruitment or what I've come to see is a basic lack of face that heterosexuals have and heterosexuality. Which is lead? Which has led to recent attacks on school teachers who are homosexual. Dr. John P Spiegel past president of the American Psychiatric association has stated in a lot of people of me this statement that there is no evidence to support the thesis that homosexual teachers might affect the sexual orientation of their students homosexuality is not catching any more than is heterosexuality. The overwhelming majority of homosexuals have no interest in pre-adolescent children. no sexual interest Studies have shown variously that beat between 90 to 97% of sexual assaults on children are heterosexual and occur within the family cons context. In a survey made in San Francisco in 1972 out of 107 reported instances of of child sexual abuse all we're by heterosexuals. And the fact is that most had her most homosexuals, like heterosexuals see lovers and friends from their own pure groups their own age groups. I've mentioned that gay people have families and our families has a miss persis that relationships between persons of the same sex. Don't last. And along with that, but gay people are sexually promiscuous. I kind of like Alfred Kinsey's. Definition of promiscuity, which was that a promiscuous person is someone who's getting more than you are. It's as good as it's true that many male homosexual experience sexual contact with many different partners. And I think part of this is that they're thrust into a sexual subculture. The game man is not free to approach other man, unless he knows they're gay for fear of being found out and is losing his job or his friends. And gathering places such as bars and steam bags are safe places to make sexual contacts, but difficult places to make friendships. Many gay men have long-term relationships with one partner, even though such relationships appear to be more difficult to maintain for gay men than for gay women. It's considered. All right for a man to remain a bachelor. But as dr. Martin Hoffman played out in his book gay world. I society looks askance at two men living together, especially after the age of 30. Pressures of job society and parents often put endurable strength on such a relationship. However, two of my male friends are just celebrating their 19th anniversary and other male couples. I know of been living together for 10 years for 14 years for 22. And they're also gay men who prefer to live alone or living with groups of men and even some who prefer to lead a life of celibacy by choice. Lesbians on the other hand are women and therefore when they realize their sexual preference, they bring with him all the conditioning. They have received as women in our anti-sexual culture. Many many lesbians have form long-lasting relationships based solely on love and commitment since there are no legal ties to bind two women together as in heterosexual marriage. My partner and I are working up to it celebrating our 25th anniversary in February. I don't think longevity is any kind of criteria for any kind of relationship. Unless it's a good one. But it is possible for people who love each other to be together regardless of their sexual orientation. And other lesbians as what came in live alone or live with groups of women. Average heterosexual women the scope of a lesbian sexual activity depends largely on her age her background her Companions and her worldview. There's a lot of difference between lesbians in my age group and the younger women as there are differences between heterosexual women in my Dove my generation and younger younger women today. Heterosexuals continue to believe that if two women or two men for such a relationship. A couple relationship that there must be role playing involved. That is that such a gay Union must be modeled on heterosexual marriage with one partner being the more dominant and aggressive and the other being passive. While it is true that some gay couples do play sex roles. They are in the minority. Male homosexuals are men who prefer other men. When they live together, they are living together as men and when two lesbians get together, that means there's is a woman to woman relationship. with few exceptions lesbian women live with Partners on an on role-playing basis driving for a Z Gallerie. A relationship is as possible between two human being Because after all it's been the feminist movement, which is brought to the attention of us all the dangers inherent in sex role stereotyping. We now know that those qualities which we have labeled as masculine in quotes or feminine are truly human qualities and that you deny any person regardless of sex the right to be a pretty tough tender passes emotional logical all of those things is to deny full personhood. Relevant to the stereotyping of masculine and feminine roles is the idea that gay men and gay women are masculine. But each wishes they were the opposite sex and that therefore each hates the opposite sex. The truth of the matter is that gay men are happy to be men and gay women are happy to be women. Neither as a general rule hates the opposite sex. It is just that lesbians prefer women. What gay men prefer men? And all those some gave me and do fall into society's idea of an exam in it, man soda some non gay men. It's not everyone who can match John Wayne's He-Man Style. And perhaps lesbians do exhibit a greater degree of so-called masculine traits than do non gay women because after all we are Independent Women and we have no man to lean on so we have to learn to solve our problems by yourself. by and large caliber gay people both women and men are indistinguishable from the women and men who make up the heterosexual population and finally, There is that myth which states that the sexual activities of two men or two women are somehow perverted. You have a sexual acts performed by same-sex couples and opposite-sex couples are virtually the same. There are only so many things human beings can do sexually The difference with gay lovers, of course is at their sexual activity cannot lead to procreation. And that may be the Crux of the matter. The reason that many people see how my sexuality as a sin or as a natural. Doc McKenzie and his colleagues at the Kinsey Institute have long seeing homosexuality as simply a variance a natural variance on the whole spectrum of human sexuality and there have been homosexuals on this planet since there have been people. And same-sex behavior is reported throughout the animal kingdom. And it's a point. I think we're all going to be May. Society need to get beyond the fact that an individual is homosexual to the kind of person she or he is homophobia stems from ignorance Or is Rabbi Elliot grafman? Put it many years ago people fear that which they do not understand and what they fear they despise. A recent filppula in California indicated that those who were supportive of gay rights were people who had personal contact with homosexuals either relatives friends co-workers while those who adamantly oppose gay rights were people who to their knowledge had never encountered a lesbian or a male homosexual. It's obvious that we need more program like this one where heterosexuals and homosexuals can meet and begin along me to dialogue. And hopefully in the course of today's discussions many questions will be answered fears delayed and understanding reached. So that's a gay people in this area can be more open and can continue the dialogue which we started here today. Thank you. Phyllis Lyon of the institute for advanced study of human sexuality in San Francisco. She's the author of the book lesbian woman. Dr. Ralph Blair was another speaker at the program on homosexuality in our society is presentation focused on our need to come to better terms with variety of behaviors as individuals, and as a society Bloomington, there are several theories about the nature of homosexuality, but most of them konflict, but he said it is clear that homosexuality is a state of being and it is determined before and after birth by unidentifiable events that take place in early childhood because our social attitudes toward homosexuality are generally unaccepting the role of the psychotherapist becomes an important. One for himself is a psychotherapist and director of New York City's homosexual Community Counseling Center. homosexual means same-sex But it does not mean sameness. What is erroneous and then so debilitating is the way in which homosexuals and others including counselors and psychotherapists view homosexual identity desire activity organizations politics Lifestyles or what have you as monolithic. If you have homosexual desires those desires are yours. Not those of any other person with homosexual desires. If you engage in a homosexual act that act is yours. Not the act of anybody else who may be described as performing the same Act. The desires and the acts are yours. experienced in your brain your largest sex organ If you experience homosexual desires or behavior The variety of homosexuality and homosexual phenomena is increased by 1. by you You are your homosexuality? The person you are becoming is the homosexuality that you will be. nobody else psychotherapist a liberationist feminist judge nobody else has the right to dictate What your homosexuality will be? It's unfortunate that homosexuals and non homosexuals alike have put up with the notion that there are only two or three kinds of homosexuals. The limp wrist or counterpart among lesbians the clenched fist. Or trembling fingers washing themselves and guilt in frustration behind the closet door. Just because you have homosexual desires or engage in certain homosexual acts does not mean that you have to adopt a particular philosophy of life. a particular aesthetic Or circle of friends or political stance or form of relationship with a lover co-workers family and so on. But if you can accept your homosexuality, perhaps the thing that people are least prepared to accept you'll be far better able to accept anything else in life facing his homosexuality successfully and little boy and become a man. Facing her homosexuality successfully a little girl and become a woman. First of all, you have to know what's going on in yourself and in your environment. must know something about what motivates you What you value? What you get out of present Behavior? This precedes you're changing your behavior. And when I say changing I don't mean changing orientation since that is not possible but changing self-sabotaging behavior for more productive creative and enhancing Behavior. Before moving on. Let me say a couple of things about The various attempts that have been undertaken to change the orientation. so-called treatment I like to think of it as so the two classifications these days on the one hand we have what is older the psychotherapeutic Hocus Pocus and even ethio therapeutic Hocus Pocus today For some time now the writings of psychiatrist Thomas sauce have helped many of us to recognize the fact that mental health is at the mental health establishment has replaced the Priestly establishment for Authority in human behavior questions. It has been doing this. He says with much of the same arrogance that used to characterize the pronouncements of religious authorities. In doing so and not unlike its predecessor. The mental health establishment has tended to create an often exaggerated picture of what it can be expected to do. Psychiatrist Peter Bourne head of the White House Office of drug abuse has made it clear when he said quote one of the problems of Psychiatry and psychology is an overselling of the discipline in terms of the ability to predict or alter behavior and quote. Through too simplistic reporting the popular press is often raise false hopes in people who very much want to believe that somewhere somehow someone in the mental health field is actually turning out patients who have had their sexual orientations reversed through therapy. But as I can put it in my survey of the treatment literature on homosexuality there has been conflict and confusion and etiology and consequently also conflict and confusion in prescribed remedies. After considering all variables, I found no validated evidence in even the most quote promising cases reported in the professional literature that anyone has successfully changed from homosexual orientation to heterosexual orientation. After the disappointing results of long and expensive psychoanalysis the public began to look to the alleged success of behavior modification techniques. Get a pioneer of behavior therapy Arnold Lazarus as honestly acknowledge that quote to my chagrin. I have had no enduring success with any of the methods of behavior therapy in trying to modify homosexual responses. He admits quote in the Heyday of my behavioristic Zeal. I succeeded in temporarily blocking all sexual outlets for some bewildered and ambivalent homosexuals who were subsequently Overjoyed to relapse into active and gratifying homosexuality information add to the confusion surrounding homosexuality of them us mentality results. He said and it blocks our ability to understand and accept homosexuality the need to do both is important because homosexuality is present to some degree in every family in America. Those families are termed the normal majority by anti-homosexual activist Anita Bryant of the normal majority. Has the national gay task force has replied to the save our children campaign. We are your children. And of course the task force hit it right on the head. and sooner or later Since blood is thicker. It's the strength and the tenacity of the American nuclear family, which will win the day for acceptance of persons who happened to be homosexual. In 7 years of doing counseling with homosexuals in their families. I have never seen a case in which at least the acknowledgement. You are still our son or you are still our daughter. Did not Prevail ultimately over initial shock denial anger hurt and assorted hassles. Admittedly some parents have not been able to go much further than just to quietly accept what they could not change. But neither could they really mention it for example to others. But other parents initially just as unprepared as anyone else for the news of their gay Offspring have gone forward to found chapters of parents of gays and to become involved in other educational and support groups some even going on radio and television to help break down the public Prejudice that has made the lives of their children more difficult than necessary. When Judd marmor past president of the American Psychiatric association was asked on CBS whether he thought there might be a family in America, they could lean back and relax and honestly say that they would not have to contend with homosexuality in their family. He replied in the negative, of course. Because of the fact of homosexuality somewhere in virtually everybody's family even in North Dakota. Sooner or later American families will come around and they will continue to be able to see their way clear to accept that inevitable homosexuality. And many will not only learn to live with it. But we'll learn to truly take it in stride as some already have during an even. more difficult era that time will be sooner rather than later. If the educational efforts before us are tackled and carried out with common sense and concern for the sensibilities of all those involved. Thank you. Dr. Ralph Blair psychotherapist and director of the homosexual Community Counseling Center in New York City is address was part of the public program on homosexuality in our society house last week in Fargo. Local clergy also participated in that program. They discussed how we lived in views homosexuality. John is D has more on that session in a moment. Dr. Richard Brevard North Dakota State University open the final segment of the program on how religions do the homosexual by reminding the participants that value questions are deeply connected with the phenomenon of homosexuality that obviously for many people the subject of homosexuality is the subject of sin of deep moral wrong because many-faced professed that homosexuality is a sin against God and against nature there for to avoid a discussion of values and religious beliefs that a program like this would be a disservice for that reason several local religious leaders were asked to comment on homosexuality in light of the teachings of their particular Faith versus fake was Rabbi Jerry Brown Temple Beth-El in Fargo. I was asked to address you today so that I might share with you the Jewish view of homosexuality and that's the very tall order. It has often been said that if you get two Jews together and ask him a question, you'll get three different answers. So therefore I really can't pretend to speak for all of Judaism or for all Jews in any way at all but what I can do is share with you my own understanding of what the Jewish tradition has to say about this issue. Before I do this, however, I think that a little digression is necessary concerning the nature of the Jewish tradition particularly as it relates to the Bible for I am going to discuss the biblical text that have been alluded to earlier this morning. Many people mistakenly assumed that all Jewish teaching is to be found in the Bible the Old Testament or at the very least. The Jews are obligated to follow all of the rules and teachings of the Bible to the letter. In fact, Judaism has maintained its Vitality through the Centuries by distinguishing between those X values and Concepts which make the Bible a book for every generation and those specific acts of biblical legislation. Which grew out of the circumstances of a particular time and place? Will you consider the biblical commands to love our neighbor to seek peace and pursue it to love mercy and Justice and the like to be the very basis of our faith and our way of life, but we have recognized the need to alter some specific biblical rules in the light of new insights and developments. Now if we understand this insistence upon faithfulness to the time with Spirit of the biblical world, then we are ready to examine the Jewish view of homosexuality as I conceive it. The Bible seems on the face of it to be very clear on the subject. According to the Book of Leviticus homosexual activity among males at least is a criminal act punishable by Death. Early traditional rabbinic law dating to some 2,000 years ago accepted this statement with very little comment. But more recent research into homosexuality along with the emergence of the gay rights movement has led many Jewish Scholars to re-examine the biblical and traditional rabbinic text in an attempt to understand the guiding principles upon which this attitude was based. In his recent response some romantic opinion on the subject. Dr. Eugene. Mohali offers us his analysis of the biblical and traditional rabbinic attitudes toward homosexuality. The biblical and rabbinic law concerning the homosexual is based on several what's functions first that the homosexual acts out of volition that he is a willful Rebel a sinner who has chosen consciously to flout the law and the law of God. Second and aspect of the harshness of the law is also due to the general tendency in the legislation in Leviticus. And the rabbinic laws based upon them to distinguish and to separate the Jew from their idolatrous neighbors. There is an aspect of these laws in other words, which is part of the rabbinic attitude toward idolatry and flows from the particular time place be historic situation in which these laws were formulated. As I said much has been learned about human behavior. Since Biblical times much has changed. The question is do the assumptions upon which the traditional law and the biblical lion facts are based still make sense today in a time when homosexuals are denied the basic human freedoms that others enjoy. Again, I call Doctor Mohali. We know today that in the overwhelming number of cases as we've heard this morning. In fact, the homosexual is not a willful volitional Rebel. He is either a homosexual from birth or became one in early childhood or Adolescence in any case that is the way he is. At the very least therefore, he would even according to traditional law in the light of our present knowledge have to be treated as one who acts under duress and merits all the sympathy consideration and kindness that traditional law extends to the victim. Furthermore. We also know today that the homosexual is hardly motivated by idolatrous drives nor is homosexuality and a similar threat in any way. Well clearly the assumptions upon which the rabbis and the biblical writer relied have been proven incorrect by modern psychology and end inquiry. the homosexual can no longer be considered a criminal in any sense of the word for his is not evil little choice, but rather a state of being Since this is the case it seems to me that the true Spirit of Jewish tradition demands that the homosexual again doctor. Mahalia's words quote the accepted without moral judgment in terms of personal guilt or sin and every form of sympathetic understanding the extended to him. In the past few years several Jewish congregations have been formed by Jewish homosexuals and have applied for membership in the union of American Hebrew congregations, which is the umbrella Association for reform Jewish congregations nationally. These applications caused considerable debate, but the debate was not over whether or not the homosexuals have the right to worship and follow their chosen faith and freedom. The question was whether or not a congregation which accepted only homosexuals could be admitted to the Union. Our friend, dr. Mohali and others. In fact argued that other that all of our congregations must be open to all including the homosexual. Doctor Mohali asserted that quote we must extend to the homosexual as we would to any Jew the privilege of joining a congregation. But he is strongly opposed to separate homosexual congregations for such congregations would not be open to all Jews. He says quote the synagogue should help in integrating the homosexual into the religious life of the community not be a vehicle for isolating him. No idea Lee doctor. Mahalia's recommendations make very good sense to me as high as a rabbi understand Jewish tradition. I feel it is essential that we rid ourselves of the misconception of the homosexual as criminal and begin to deal with him as person. Ideally homosexuals should be as welcome to any congregation as anyone else. But we do not live in an Ideal World. The fact remains that many if not, most people are unable to deal with the issue of homosexuality and the way that I have suggested. acceptance and compassion remain goals to be striven for Not facts of life and I think that one might search very long with in Judaism or any other Faith before fighting a congregation that would willingly accept acknowledged homosexuals as members. Some time ago the union of American Hebrew congregations did in fact admit the congregation beit Fahim Hashim a homosexual congregation in Los Angeles into the ranks of its membership and several other congregations in New York and Florida have followed but it was only accepted on the condition that the congregation accept heterosexual Jews as well. And so well doctor but Holly's position held Sway and theory in practice the congregation remains a gay congregation. The admission of this congregation as well as the others into the Union I think is a good first step toward the ultimate goal of recognizing the human rights that I feel our tradition teaches us to extend to homosexuals as to all other people. Yet the idea of witch doctor Mohali spoke remains to be realized. The IDL is the application of the real religious message of the Bible a message that speaks to all men in all times and to the whole issue of homosexuality today. It is a message that demands compassion and justice for all men a message which applies no less to the homosexual that do any other human being. Thank you. Rabbi Jerry Brown of Temple Beth-El in Fargo also among those who addressed the problem of homosexuality and religion was James Merle a litter and laymen who is director of Lutheran Social Services of North Dakota. I'm jamero from Lutheran Social Services. I'm a Layman. I understand her some people worried about me not being a theologian. Hey where to buy man Factor? What about some of the other rest? I'm not be intelligence, but I'm about to leave not one and I never sure why I'm up here. I think it was so that all of the little people out there have a chance to be represented at the table up here and they want to see what a klutz a Layman would do a given the situation on the other hand friends if you just listen to me. Because frankly if I had to wait in my face life for a theologian to decide what I got to be up to I'd be dead long time ago. They can hardly agree on you know that I like the table. So you here in a non payload you all were all over our own pillows you by the way, you see when we go to sleep at night. We make up our own prayers. I don't care what your read what you heard what the preacher was how strong the pope your own theology comes in your own head. Anyway, so we end up being your own telogen if you come to Ashley North Dakota on Sunday next 9, you'll be able to hear me preach a sermon what you won't have time to do today name of the sermon is Here Comes The Judge. Here Comes The Judge so you know that was done by Flip Wilson and I think a lot of us got to listen to that because it occurs to me throughout North Dakota and other places. I don't understand why the legal profession is so much trouble with the judging situation in are the judges overworked the calendars overloaded why we got volunteers already to judge your neighbor just like that. Not right, we're all ready to judge. And so that's what I'm going to call Here Comes The Judge and I going to get more serious some years ago. I was in LSS in Minnesota. When a young Pastor came in to see me about a trunk. I was going to give it his church a couple nights, hence, but it was obvious from the way he sent there is trouble was not what I was going to talk about or the subject something obviously bothered him a great deal. I said, you don't look well I said I am not it's not that drunk either. He said it's a young couple in our church ideal couple four-year-old child beautiful people do all the right things. But all of a sudden the man left I left the four-year-old child in the wife, and he said the wife doesn't understand why I just just left and I can get to her to counsel her and I've been able to talk about he won't come in the morning talked about it. I said never occur to you. That he may be homosexual to try to hide marriage and just can't face it. Yes. He said but it won't come in. I'd like to talk to him. How you forgive me is looking Lehman. If I say to you what I said to him. I said Sarah. Why would he come to you? Party come to you for help. He already knows he's damn Tudor place. And I pour Pastor I was sorry later. I said at that poor Pastor tears be going to roll down his cheeks, and he sobbed can possibly and he said I know my brother is one. And he tells then that his brother at the after graduating high school admitted to the family. He was homosexual. He departed that part of that small town in Minnesota went to California where he now lives with his lover and he said in our family we treat him as many families do a mental patient or someone who is dead. No Christmas cards, no correspondence. And again, he wept and said that I love him. He's my brother, but for a pastor his church cut him off from his own blood brother what the answer for that who shall answer for that? I didn't answer that for a while. I heard people say today the problem is one of anti sexuality and I submit my friends as I see it and over the 15 years. I've been bleeding for a better description of sexuality for our young people. The rest of us. I agree with that. I think the greatest trouble is we haven't even come to terms with being sexual creatures ourselves. We are we been convinced that what we do at night in the missionary position of somebody reported to it even that is dirty. And so how in the world could be accept anything else and so we're right now worrying about whether old Calcutta is going to come to town and 9 people going to catch cold at the Civic Auditorium. If we can't accept that if we can understand that how in the world do you think we should talk to her brother who's got a different sexual style and we understand and respect. Someone has said the trouble with with sex education reason doesn't reseed lawn mower repair in our country. Is there somebody Unforgiven masterbaiters? And I think that's true stop and think about it. We've never come to terms with her own sexuality. And then I was in Minot last we talked a little Leaguers Pastor call me took a half hour on the phone upset because he felt I am not stated my position clearly enough on how I felt about premarital sex. I said sir, it's been my experience that adults more often than not have shut off their audience and especially young people by stating their position first and then wonder why the kids don't know if repairs is that I want to buy the kids don't talk to us and we never get to hear and of course, they won't talk to us because we've we've already shut them off and he thought it was right unclear about the adultery business and all the rest of that I get in trouble at all the time because I've never found by the way. I got 10 agree on what the adults are coming at at command had to do with I get my I give him a sample example of someone who is not married 21 and 18 years of age have intercourse 2 weeks for the wedding. Did they commit adultery didn't I I get about a third seat turns out No wonder our young people wouldn't know the adults don't know and we've not cleared up around on your systems ourselves. And then you know, they all fight together. I sat down there listening to these people talk. I had to I just an outline. I kept things that I can hardly read it. I talked in Grand Forks this week on marriage many faces of marriage and divorce and people wondering why are young people aren't aren't feeling better about a heterosexual marriage. Why should they fax or just out 50/50 chance of the marriage ending in divorce? Why would a kid's seek that kind of relationship? What if they told me the airplanes are going up today 50/50 chance of falling down. You won't even take a free ticket. And then I heard that thing. I'm 60 Minutes the other day dude. I think I'm 60 Minutes interviewing the spouses of homosexuals and the thoughts of a reporter ignorant person who said You homosexual in effect, I notice you're married. Yes, that's true. That's what the program is about. Yes. I married. And then even more so yeah. On and then I noticed as if it's just totally out of the question, I noticed you even have two children. And do you remember that the man saying in what way did it ever say that being homosexual robbed me of the joy of having children or wanting children playing in response to a dumb question? Well friends here in a hurry, I think as I look back on it going to 1924 Northern Minnesota. I was taped in more ways to to Beware of the homosexual anything I can think of. I don't think I was taped about Indians blacks any other thing and and more effectively than I was about homosexual and that chauvinistic way I grew up in the woods and it was through later enforces. I have high school went into World War II took right join reporting on how they're beating up on queers in the park at some other strange Stephen everybody applauded that's what a grown man out of do. I've had a great deal taping about that. And now I quickly part of what we're doing is Lutheran Social Service. We had to experience this we're trying to help people face other folks were different because it has been said here many times a part of our trouble is we not talk to anybody who is homosexual and do all kinds of things. You've never met the human being until you've seen us and workshops for we bring the handicap inside meet somebody who talks different walks different acts different when you talk to him because I submit we all suffer from the third eye syndrome. The third eye which is like this if I came to visit you noticed that you had a third eye in the middle of your forehead. Can you imagine trying to converse with somebody's got three eyes. I'm trying to talk to and I noticed my gaze get to wandering up to the third. I think I better quit that she's going to notice in so I can start talking this way while he can't look me in the face. I look back my gaze what I'm fighting the difference between you and me all the time. I'm finding this difference. I never find a human being on the other side. And that's what we've done is I think we greet judges looking for Sinners that found we haven't been able to find a human being or so busy cataloging citizen wondering where to put the ash marks on them. And then one more thing I heard dr. Ralph player. I'm glad it came up to be with us. I heard him say something today. Touch me very closely cuz I believe it a great deal when he said we are where you are and we are you and if any of you heard me before I've talked about that we are them and the people are most have to judge you at the lookout because we're going to be right there someday, you know that up the poor all the other people we magnificently reach down and out for up and say we're going to help we do it in this pasture. By the way. I was this way down watch out because one day you'll be there and I say to you my friends until we understand that will continue to judge our brother where we find them. We are them. Thank you. James Merrill director of Lutheran Social Services of North Dakota speaking of clergy counselors and mental health professionals at a program on homosexuality in our society held recently in Fargo. This morning song for the weekend was produced by Stephanie Johnson with assistance from yours truly John insty additional material from the recent public program on homosexuality sponsored by the Cass County Mental Health Association will be featured in future programs on this station special music during today's program was performed by John Fahey. Home for the weekend is her to eat Saturday morning at this time on kccm. This is John. It's t have a fun weekend.