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A Thought Experiment, related to current debates elsewhere

Discussion in 'Sexuality' started by Evangelicalhumanist, Jan 28, 2017.

  1. Evangelicalhumanist

    Evangelicalhumanist "Truth" isn't a thing...
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    This is a “thought experiment,” the sort of thing Einstein used in order to come up with his great theories of special and general relativity – only a little more mundane.

    You are free to try the experiment, and to answer the questions it poses – or to ignore it, if you will. But please, do not try to reframe it, or slag it as “propaganda,” or anything else. Try it or ignore it, but that’s all.

    And remember, a thought experiment requires you to use your imagination, but also to be honest with yourself. If you can’t do that, don’t bother trying.

    The Dilemma, You’re “Out of Place”

    Suppose that the year is 2019, and President Donald Trump and the Republican Congress have deported all known LGBT….(etc.) people from the United States to an island in the pacific, guarded vigilantly by navy vessels and air reconnaissance so that nobody can escape. Suppose also that many other nations (especially Muslim ones) have banished their own “undesirables to this island.

    Now, imagine that the islanders, in order to try and create a society in which all can live peacefully, have enacted a constitution that says, basically, “since nations will continue to send their gays here (and gays will continue to be born in every culture), procreation will never be an issue. But society is safer when its members eventually pair-bond. Therefore, all islanders must marry a partner of the same gender (and of course, complete the marriage bond in the usual way.) Failure to do so will certainly lead to economic consequences (you won’t get a job or home), but might also lead to prison sentences.

    Now, finally, suppose that somehow, you (a straight person) have managed to become washed up on the shores of this island. There’s no way off, and you are going to live there forever. How will you cope? Specifically, here are the questions you should try to answer:
    • Will you marry a person of your own gender, in order to satisfy the law?
    • Will you consummate that marriage, and keep your new partner satisfied, as any married partner would expect?
    • If you find you cannot be attracted to a person of your own sex, will you seek out counselling (it’s available) that promises workable “conversion therapy” that will change your orientation so that you can fit in?
    • Do you think it possible that therapy might work on you, and convert you?
    • Or will you commit to living a celibate, unhappy, unfulfilled, right-handed (or left, feels like a stranger) life?
    • Or, finally, will you protest and demand your rights as a person who can only be attracted to and love a person of the opposite sex?
    When you’ve answered those questions, please then think about what it is that the straight, mostly religious, world seems to demand of gay people. And ask whether you still think it’s fair. Do you?
     
    #1 Evangelicalhumanist, Jan 28, 2017
    Last edited: Jan 28, 2017
  2. Kemosloby

    Kemosloby Well-Known Member
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    Drink poison
     
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  3. Drolefille

    Drolefille PolyPanGeekGirl

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    A suggestion for the experiment, by including Bi and Trans (who may or may not be Gay, Bi, straight, etc.) people you're muddying your waters. Keeping it to Lesbian and Gay would help. All as non-monosexual queer folk mess things up :p
     
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  4. Neo Deist

    Neo Deist Th.D. & D.Div. h.c.

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    I'd just rip my shirt off and the women would turn straight. Wouldn't have any competition from the men, though the men may start feeling jealous toward the women. :D:p:)
     
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  5. Skwim

    Skwim Veteran Member

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    Thing is, AFAIK no country in the world is demanding that homosexuals marry people of the opposite sex, so I fail to see the significance of the OP. :shrug:


    .


    .
     
  6. fantome profane

    fantome profane Keep safe, and keep your neighbours safe.
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    First I have to point out that just as you said "gays will continue to be born in every culture" it is also true that "straights will continue to be born in every culture", and that includes this LGBT island. So if the people on this island reproduce most of their children will be straight (yes, most offspring of LGBT are straight, even if both parents are gay).

    So what that means is that eventually there will be a sizable straight population on this Island.

    With that in mind my answer is that I will protest, not only for my rights but for the rights of my community to be treated as equals.
     
  7. Deeje

    Deeje Avid Bible Student
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    • NO
    • NO
    • NO
    • NO
    Who said that a celibate life needs to be unhappy or unfulfilled? There is way more to life than sex. I would be very fulfilled teaching these people the value of being straight in the eyes of God. After all, it isn't being gay that is condemned in scripture....its the unnatural things that gay people do. No one ever died of refraining from sex.

    No I would not protest and I would demand nothing. If I am the only "different" person on the island then I would stay different and celebrate the ways that I can maintain my faith in much the same way as Lot and his family did in Sodom.

    Everyone has choices. Sexual orientation is not a choice, but what you do about it is. Just as we would not condone pedophiles satisfying their sexual appetites, I see homosexuality in much the same way....but that is because I care about what God thinks of me, more than I care about what I think of myself, or what others think of me.
     
  8. Shadow Wolf

    Shadow Wolf Rival's Wife

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    While I appreciate the effort, your thought experiment has some major holes in it. The end is insightful, but path there bumpy.
    If this island includes transgender people, I don't see this being a part of that society considering transgender people, much like everyone else, come in a whole "rainbow" of sexualities and interests.
    This is another whole. I would already be on this island being trans, but as a heterosexual woman who gets little pleasure from other women, I would both be on this island and in this position of a straight person on this island.
     
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  9. Evangelicalhumanist

    Evangelicalhumanist "Truth" isn't a thing...
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    Fine, we don't do thought experiments. Thinking outside your own box is too hard. Sorry for trying.
     
  10. Spiderman

    Spiderman Veteran Member

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    I'd become like John the Baptist and just pray and fast all the time and hopefully die sooner rather than later
     
  11. Evangelicalhumanist

    Evangelicalhumanist "Truth" isn't a thing...
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    Not all the rules we live by are legislated. Many are purely social, but just as important. In the era in which I grew up, an unmarried man of a certain age (especially if good-looking and well-dressed) was looked on with real suspicion -- and very often barred from promotional opportunities.

    I can't tell you how many people I've know who caved to that, married, and destroyed not only their own lives, but the lives of wives and children. I knew two gentlemen who married, had 3 and 2 children, but who carried on an affair with each other for years -- even going on "family trips" together so they could spend time. Of course, the families eventually found out, and there's 7 lives irreparably wounded.

    I wish you'd consider my thought experiment in that light.
     
  12. Evangelicalhumanist

    Evangelicalhumanist "Truth" isn't a thing...
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    Atticus Finch said, "You never really know a person until you walk a mile in their shoes."

    Unfortunately, this is not always easy. If you're gay, you cannot "be" straight -- although you can do things that make it appear that you are. The same is true in reverse, though most straight people would never admit it.

    But in this thread, I was hoping that while you can't walk a mile in a gay person's shoes, perhaps you could try a few tentative baby steps.

    On this and other forums, and all across the world, people denigrate gays, suggest that they convert, tell them that they should remain celibate (for their entire life, whether this is suitable for them or not). They ask how to "solve the gay problem," or accuse gays of wanting "special status" by being treated like everybody else.

    I was just hoping some of those people to try and see how it would feel themselves, to be cast in a situation not of your own fault, resulting in demands being made upon you that nobody else has to pay.

    I can understand why nobody would want to try an honest thought experiment like this -- it's too hard work, when it's easier just to cast judgement and move on.
     
  13. Jonathan Ainsley Bain

    Jonathan Ainsley Bain Logical Positivist

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    Imagine you had to live in a place where the authorities insisted that 1+1 = 3.
    Would this be the same as living in a place that insisted that 1+1 = 2?
     
  14. Liu

    Liu Well-Known Member

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    Yes, it's highly hypothetical, but for the heck of it, let's see... if I were cis and hetero...
    One can marry without even living with the person one is married to. It's just a formality. But, if I understand correctly, this kind of marriage here also forces me to have one time sex with the person in question. I would nevertheless choose the first option of marrying a person who doesn't mind, have sex with that person once and continue living my life there in peace and out of prison.
    I certainly wouldn't like being forced to have sex (no matter with whom), but this seems like the best solution.

    If the marriage would actually force me to more, or if I'd notice that there is a resistance movement against these enforcements, I might also decide to protest, depending on the circumstances.

    Since this is a hypothetical situation in a hypothetical reality I can't say whether conversion therapy would work. And I've no idea how being hetero or homo is like in the first place, so that question really is expecting too much.
     
  15. Kilgore Trout

    Kilgore Trout Misanthropic Humanist

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    I doubt that anyone who thinks that gays should be (or can be) "converted," wouldn't be swayed by your thought-experiment, even if it was structured and conveyed more effectively.
     
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