We do owe those with same-sex attractions an apology

By Tom Quiner

Which lifestyle would you encourage your child to pursue?

LIFESTYLE #1 will reduce his life expectancy by an average of 13.5 years according to medical data.

LIFESTYLE #2 will reduce his life expectancy by an average of 20 years according to medical data.

In light of the data, the obvious answer is neither one.

Lifestyle #1 refers to smokers. Lifestyle #2 refers to men who have sex with men.

Scientists and sociologists have produced reams of data on the medical implications of the gay lifestyle.

Pope Francis

Pope Francis

The data is relevant in light of Pope Francis’ comments on the subject of same-sex sexuality last year:

“I believe that the church not only should apologize to the person who is gay whom it has offended, but has to apologize to the poor, to exploited women, to children exploited for labor; it has to ask forgiveness for having blessed many weapons.”

Not surprisingly, many are confused. The Pontiff went on to say, “I repeat what the Catechism of the Catholic Church says: that they must not be discriminated against, that they must be respected and accompanied pastorally.”

We’ll return to the Pope’s comments in a moment.

For now, let’s review data.

Data provided by the Center for Disease Control reveals that men who have sex with men (MSM) are 44 times that of straight men to contract HIV, and 40 times that of women.

With syphilis, it is 46 times the infection rate of straight men and 71 times that of women.

Men who have sex with men are susceptible to a wide array of health risks at much higher rates than the general population, including Hepatitis B, anal cancer, anal fissures, and various anorectal trauma.

Men who have sex with men experience high rates of sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) because of the rampant promiscuity found in the gay community. Anecdotal and statistical data both reveal that gay men have far more sexual partners than the heterosexual or even lesbian community. And the data seems to hold regardless of the country.

The Urban Men’s Health Study conducted in 2003 reports that over 30% of the gay men they studied frequented bathhouses, despite years of public health education on the risk of AIDs. These men had sex with an average of 27 other men per year.

In Amsterdam in the same year, a study reported that “single” gay men averaged 22 sex partners per year, while those in steady, committed relationships still had some eight different partners per year.

In a 2005 Canadian vaccine trial, gay men reported 7 partners in the last half year.

What is most disturbing about this data is the promiscuity in the gay community despite their full knowledge of the deadliness of AIDs.

There is a startling difference in the incidence in infidelity in committed heterosexual relationships compared to committed homosexual relationships. A large study reported that 94% of married men and women had but one partner in the previous year: each other. For co-habitating men and women, three out four had but one partner.

But a study by Joseph Harry, “Gay Couples,” dated though it is, reported that “Gay men reportedly had sex with someone other than their partner in 66 percent of relationships within the first year.”

There are mental health implications to the gay lifestyle as well. In a study conducted by Marie Tomeo, she reports:

“In research with 942 nonclinical adult participants, gay men … reported a significantly higher rate of childhood molestation than did heterosexual men and women. Forty-six percent of the homosexual men in contrast to 7% of the heterosexual men reported homosexual molestation.”

Ms. Tomeo’s study has flaws, but nonetheless suggests that a psychic wound wrought by childhood abuse affects that sexual orientation of some young men.

Other studies reveal that gay men suffer mental health issues disproportionate to the general population. Gay rights activists acknowledge the data, but blame it on societal “homophobia” and “bullying.” There is no denying that stigma may play a role in the mental health of any person.

However, a major study out of Denmark confirms that homophobia isn’t the real issue. Denmark has been “gay friendly” for decades, legalizing same-sex marriage in 2000. They discovered that men who had homosexual sex in the previous twelve months had much higher rates of major depression, bipolar disorder, panic disorder, agoraphobia and obsessive compulsive disorder than men who did not have sex with men in the previous twelve months. The Dutch researchers concluded that …

“… homosexuality is not only associated with mental health problems during adolescence and early adulthood, as has been suggested, but also in later life.”

Okay, that’s a lot to process. The bottom line is that living the gay lifestyle costs the average gay man twenty years off of his life expectancy.

Here in the United States, our government sued cigarette manufacturers. They took money from the lawsuits they won to invest in education programs to get people to live tobacco-free lives.

Good. Tobacco use declined as a result. People are living longer.

Ironically, our government celebrates the gay lifestyle and demands that everyone do the same, even though the data reveals it is more dangerous than smoking. Those who question the lifestyle are called “haters.”

Neither side should hate. In fact, Pope Francis has made it clear that we’re all on the same side. After all, we are God’s creation, as flawed as we each are. Who among us doesn’t family or friends with same-sex attractions?

And who amongst us doesn’t want the best for our family or friends? In light of the data above, I’m not quite sure to what the Pontiff refers when he calls on us to apologize. It is true that the Catechism of the Catholic says that those with same-sex attractions shouldn’t be discriminated against.

It also calls acting on such desires disordered. Acting on these unhealthy attractions is sinful.

I like that the Pope calls for those fighting disordered desires to be accompanied pastorally by me, you, the priesthood, and the entire Roman Catholic community. Let us embrace these, our brothers and sisters, in love and lead them away from the path to death towards the path to life.

The Church has been remiss in this mission in recent history. For that, we owe DO owe our broken family members an apology.

[Much of the data for this article came from the website, Facts About Youth.]


  1. sklyjd on August 5, 2017 at 6:51 am

    I am not gay by any imagination; however, I believe comparing gays to cigarette smoking very weird and possibly very religious American thinking.

    Gay people, and I know you will not agree but they must desire people of the same gender, you do not decide to become gay unless of course you were pretending to be straight or you are trans gender. I know this is a fact because as a male I could never in a million years decide even if women were wiped out to want sex with another man.

    Cigarette smoking is just like any other drug that gets into your blood stream and brain. More comparable to religion than gay people.

    • quinersdiner on August 5, 2017 at 10:07 am

      What is weird is to not compare them in this way. They are both lifestyle choices. What you do to your body affects your health. They gay lifestyle, like the smoking lifestyle, is deleterious to one’s physical health, just as a gay lifestyle is deleterious to one’s spiritual health.

      • d. knapp on August 5, 2017 at 12:42 pm

        I can only go on what I’m told and what I see. That said, I’ve heard European gays say they “chose” to be gay or “recently decided to go gay”. That added to the fact I personally knew a young man who had only dated girls, behaved typically straight, and was set to join the marines. He met some gay men, hung w/ them briefly, used drugs w/ them and was suddenly living the openly gay life. He was then dating men and NOT joining the marines. Such a sudden and drastic change in life upon meeting and interacting w/ gay men sort of goes along w/ the statements I heard European gay men make. I won’t let such a thing cause me to be mean to someone, but I have to think there is something to the age old ideas about the gay lifestyle when I see/ hear these things. Some might say that all the people who changed lifestyle were just in the closet and hiding their actual natural tendencies out of fear. Others will say it’s a choice. I cant say for sure, but if I’m to believe it’s the way one is born, I have to quit hearing about grown men and women leaving spouses and kids to live a gay life. In the modern era where there is much protection, I cant hear about these people leaving families in their 30’s-40’s and later anymore.

        • quinersdiner on August 5, 2017 at 4:34 pm

          It is a choice in this respect: a person can decide if they want to pursue a promiscuous lifestyle or not. According to data, far too many gay men do make that choice. I know some men whom I would say were born that way. I know others who live with psychic wounds that may have compromised their sexuality. It is complicated. At the same time, it is uncomplicated: men who embrace the gay lifestyle put their physical health at risk.

      • sklyjd on August 5, 2017 at 9:50 pm

        The point I make that you avoid is if you find sex with the same gender disgusting and abhorrent or just not a sexually exciting you will never be able to choose to become gay. If you find a gay sexual relationship to your satisfaction obviously this is what you will engage with. Smoking cigarettes is solely a choice unlike being gay.

  2. d. knapp on August 5, 2017 at 8:29 pm

    They certainly do. Unfortunately, I know those who began to live the lifestyle after having been married for many years w/ kids. There’s more than enough damage to go all the way around. As for promiscuity, it’s individual. As my hubby would say, the one who says they have to be true their own needs is being horribly selfish. He points out that he has a taste for 25 yr old red headed women. He knows I’ll never be her again. He would never leave me and our daughter to be w/ the girl that has always been his weakness. I suspect he’d have a hard time to attract another 25 yr red head at his ripe old age of 53. He just continues to see me as I was 24 yrs ago. We see it like we all have some aspect of ourselves not pleasing to God…some weakness we must work on in our lives ( a cross to bear). He admits his and deals w/ it within the boundaries of his covenant w/ me. Mine is the stereotypical bad temper we red headed women are known for. I have struggled w/ and prayed over it my entire adult life. It’s much better now. If I subscribed to the idea I should embrace all that is natural of myself, I’d be a pretty scary person to anger. I deal w/ temper. Hubby deals w/ eyes that could lead one astray, and these people need to know that God can help w/ their own burden. As far as their health goes, they often endanger the lives of others as well. As a nurse in the Atlanta area, I’ve heard of many women who have been given death sentences by the men “on the down low” as they call it. The unborn babies of these situations also end up w/ the same problem. I agree. It is not complicated. If there is a union or kids, dont change lives. If no union, be honest w/ all. There is a reason lying is a sin. It deprives others of the chance to make informed decisions for their actions. The Bible just spells out the way to peace. I think many dont want peace and contentment.

  3. sklyjd on August 5, 2017 at 10:01 pm

    I might add, the amount of gay people who are born and open about it today was mostly hidden during the previous decades. The amount of those born desiring sex with both genders is also very surprising, however I can only judge how people decide their sexual orientation with how I feel about my own sexual orientation. Maybe I am wrong but science has not yet determined all the facts regarding such issues as yet.

    • quinersdiner on August 5, 2017 at 10:21 pm

      I pretty much agree. Science has not found a “gay”gene. Imagine if they did. Imagine if expectant parents decided to abort their child because of this gene, just as some do because they have Downs or because they are the wrong gender. This is really not relevant to our conversation, but I throw it in as food for thought. As always, thanks for writing.

  4. d. knapp on August 6, 2017 at 5:27 pm

    I continue to wonder about those who are incarcerated and go “gay for the stay”. They are gay any time they are locked up and not when out. I have been in situations of education, military service where I was only surrounded by other women. Never once did it occur to me to get involved w/ such a relationship. If one is born one or the other, how do so many gay people I know have children? If they are as put off by straight “interactions” as we straight folks are by gay “interactions” how do these people have children w/ one they were never married to? (none of the kids are “lab created”. I could not be involved in gay “interactions” to help a lesbian friend have a child no matter how much I might care for her. How do the lesbians giving birth mange to get pregnant (not rape) or a gay man father a child (no lab involved)? It just comes off like there is at least SOME choosing going on. I know a woman whose long time husband left her and the boys to go live a gay life. He managed to live a VERY straight life a VERY long time and produce 3 children w/ a woman he wasnt sexually attracted to ever? So many are gay then not or not then gay and back again producing kids. Add this to the statements from European gays (some famous) that they chose gay, and I have a hard time thinking there’s not a certain amt. of choice going on.

    • quinersdiner on August 6, 2017 at 9:47 pm

      Good food for thought. Thanks for sharing!