News: Gay Babies, Arkansas, Thomas Roberts, Rosie

road.jpg Los Angeles fertility clinic opens, catering specifically to gay males who want to become parents. Director: “There are a lot of centers that dibble and dabble in this. But we are the only program for gay men that has psychological, legal, medical, surrogates, donors and patients all taken care of in one place. The demand is incredible. The United States has always been busy but we are seeing more and more demand from abroad.”

Gaybabyroad.jpg Radar asks: Is your baby gay?

road.jpg Anderson Cooper’s report on Thomas Roberts’ sexual abuse at the hands of a gay priest had one glaring omission: “While it was unquestionably courageous for the man to speak so candidly about his sexual abuse at the hand of the family priest as a teenager, there seemed to be a glaring absence in the discussion: namely, about how Roberts, as an out gay man, has been affected by the abuse as a grown, sexualized adult…the fact that Roberts is an openly gay man and was the victim of an ongoing sexual assault by another man (and the fact that the other victim, Goles, is also gay) can very easily lead to a cause-effect conclusion in the minds of viewers (i.e., if you are molested by a priest, you will be gay; if you are a gay adult, it is likely because your sexual development was interrupted by same-sex abuse). This interview would have been a fantastic opportunity to address these misconceptions (which are already rampant) and put them to rest.”

road.jpg Equality Florida leader Nadine Smith talks about her brutal arrest at the hearings for Largo city manager Steve Stanton: “The hatred expressed by the mob, the fury that surrounded his dismissal that night by those who justified themselves by invoking God is a frightening and public example of what happens to LGBT people all the time but rarely with such visibility. Largo is a wake up call to those who believe quietly in equality. In your silence, the mob speaks for you and takes your absence as license to systemically ignore the civil and human rights of LGBT people.”

road.jpg Gay children’s books under fire in Great Britain: “It is being argued that the books, one of which is a fairytale featuring a prince who turns down three princesses before falling in love and marrying a man, are necessary to make homosexuality seem normal to children. Fourteen schools and one local authority, backed by teaching unions and a government-funded organisation, are running the controversial scheme, which has been attacked by Christian groups.”

Rosie_reichenroad.jpg Rosie and Reichen bowl for gay families.

road.jpg Clinton, Obama, Edwards vie for gay votes: “Mrs. Clinton has stiff competition in her pursuit of influential gay Democrats. Unlike the election of 2004, when Howard Dean had the distinction of having fought for a civil-unions bill when he was governor of Vermont, the three leading Democratic candidates have virtually identical stances on the most visible gay issues. (Barack Obama, John Edwards and Mrs. Clinton are uniformly in favor of lifting a ban on gays openly serving in the military, but are all opposed to gay marriage.)”

road.jpg Arkansas Senate says “no” to gay foster parents. Senator Jim Argue, (D-Little Rock): “It really bothers me when I feel like we’ve made choices that are based on prejudice and fear. There is absolutely no evidence that this bill is in the best interest of children.”

road.jpg France’s high court rejects first gay marriage: “Stephane Charpin and Bertrand Charpentier were married in a civil ceremony on June 5, 2004, in Begles, a town in the southwest Bordeaux region. The government immediately said the union was outside the law, and a series of court decisions unfavorable to the couple followed.”

Comments

  1. PC says

    Regarding whether sexual abuse can lead to homosexuality (Anderson Cooper’s report on Thomas Roberts’ sexual abuse at the hands of a gay priest), how the heck should Roberts, much less anyone, know whether being abused by a priest led to his being gay? To this day, no one on Earth can prove whether you are born gay or become gay (from an early age for whatever reasons) so I personally would not leave it up to Roberts to provide revelatory evidence on the issue.

  2. Jeff says

    I, too, thought that the failure to at least mention the fact that Roberts is an out gay man was a fairly large omission in the piece. As far as I know, there is no evidence that points to abuse being a trigger for sexual orientation. Additionally, Roberts was at least 14 when the abuse first started. Surely his sense of sexual orientation had been firmly developed by that point. Perhaps Coop and Roberts thought that since the abuse had absolutely no bearing on his sexual orientation there was no need to mention it. Were the piece being done in Canada or Sweden, I might agree, but in the US (where there still seems to be a lot of ignorance with respect to gay issues), it would have been wise to spell it out in black and white.

  3. John says

    But in Thomas case, he was questioning his sexuality before the abuse started and was one of the reasons why his Mother sent him to the priest according to court document during the trial. And the priest who abuse Thomas is not gay, he is a pedophile. Here is what malesurvivor.org have to says about the these two subjects

    Myth #2 – Most sexual abuse of boys is perpetrated by homosexual males.

    Pedophiles who molest boys are not expressing a homosexual orientation any more than pedophiles who molest girls are practicing heterosexual behaviors. While many child molesters have gender and/or age preferences, of those who seek out boys, the vast majority are not homosexual. They are pedophiles.

    Myth #5 – Boys abused by males are or will become homosexual.

    While there are different theories about how the sexual orientation develops, experts in the human sexuality field do not believe that premature sexual experiences play a significant role in late adolescent or adult sexual orientation. It is unlikely that someone can make another person a homosexual or heterosexual. Sexual orientation is a complex issue and there is no single answer or theory that explains why someone identifies himself as homosexual, heterosexual or bi-sexual. Whether perpetrated by older males or females, boys’ or girls’ premature sexual experiences are damaging in many ways, including confusion about one’s sexual identity and orientation.

    While Thomas didn’t talking about his sexuality on the show, he did said his partner name during the follow up interview on 360.

  4. tc says

    re: the interview with Cooper:
    interesting I never had the time to think about that issue because I was caught up in his story ..but I know that Anderson wanted this interview a year ago and since then Roberts has come out to us gay people(we all know)..the general public probably does not….could he have said, “I’m not gay because of what happened to me?”…..who knows..didn’t know the other guy was gay also…he had problems discussing the abuse still, so the gay issues are probably on “the back burner” for him…20 years of living as a victim of abuse is most prominent for him..maybe he’ll talk to someone about the gay thing later

  5. hoya86 says

    To say that because Roberts did not talk about his homosexuality in the context of the abuse was a “glaring ommission” is wrong. For one thing, as already pointed out, he’s come out publicly what else was expected? People magazine like pictures of him and bf, barefoot and making cookies in their expensively designed kitchen?

    The story was about the abuse he suffered at the hands of a trusted family friend who happened to be a Catholic priest and the aftermath that ensued. Your sense of feeling cheated because he did not talk about being gay likely comes from our cultures’ need-to-know every detail whether or not relevant to the story.

    Ease up, it’s not always about what we want.

  6. Giovanni says

    Agreed TC, that and Roberts most likely believed that by adding his sexuality into the conversation he would end up confusing one with other – or rather the audience would – and he was there to focus on his abuse and its ensuing emotional carnage.

  7. says

    Re: the story about the fertility clinic. This is far from the first place focusing on GLBT families. Growing Generations in LA has been around for years and they provide all these services (including egg donors, surrogates, etc). While they might be the first to focus on men (and not also women), my guess is that growing generations has more gay male clients than lesbian couples.

  8. Jeff says

    I donno… Maybe it just me. But I would call this priest gay, and a gay abuser or molester – as opposed to a pedophile. (Not that one is any better than the other, just a matter of nomenclature.) His victims were all at least 15, when they would have had basically fully developed genitals, pubic hair, changed voices, etc. And the last incident with the other victim took place when he was 19 years old.

    And I also know that everyone is different with respect to timing and when they first have an awareness of their sexual orientation, but surely 98% of all kids must certainly know by the age of 15. Me, I was about 6.

  9. sam says

    I have no doubt that Gov. Huckabee (a Southern Baptist preacher) will sign that disgusting piece of legislative crap because of his presidental ambitions. And, he’ll do it with a great big smile.

  10. peterparker says

    Hehe…Rosie’s expression seems to say “Oh, shit. I have to have my picture taken with this C-list bozo simply because we are both here for a good cause.”

  11. Jeff in Deserto says

    I agree with Hoya86. Roberts’ sexual orientation was irrelevant to the story, and the best way to divorce the two is to not mention it. And I believe it was Goles who was sent to the monster to deal with sexual orientation issues, not Roberts.

    So, yes, Roberts’ sexual orientation was omitted (also from the followup last night), but appropriately so.

    How the monster chose his victims, and how Roberts came to accept his sexuality are potentially interesting, but distinct, stories.

  12. John says

    JEFF IN DESERTO

    Actually Thomas like Goles was also sent to the monster to with sexual orientation issues also which the special omitted. Here is a quote from baltimoresun’s article during the trial

    “Toohey, 59, a former Roman Catholic priest and Calvert Hall chaplain, was sentenced to 18 months in jail for sexually abusing Roberts after his mother asked the priest to counsel her then-14-year-old son, who was struggling with his parents’ divorce and questions about his sexuality.”

    http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/local/bal-md.toohey08feb08,1,3902342.story

    It seems during that time in that community, the priest (Toohey) is known for fixing homosexuality and that is why parents sent their kids to him hoping he cure can them. If I have to guess there is more victim out he abuse but refuse to come forward.

  13. anon says

    That Radar mag article is off-the-wall wrong. Nothing of the sort is currently possible or will be in the near future. There are upwards of a dozen genes potentially responsible for sexuality that work in various combinations, so you cannot test for homosexuality without knowing all the potential combinations. The current tests are specifically related to single-gene issues. There are also early environment gene expression issues which further prevent genetic testing because you don’t know how the gene will be expressed as the fetus develops (because you can’t predict its environmental conditions). They just discovered a half-dozen genes responsible for eye color, which must be discouraging to parents who want blue-eyed kids.

  14. Mike says

    “Regarding whether sexual abuse can lead to homosexuality (Anderson Cooper’s report on Thomas Roberts’ sexual abuse at the hands of a gay priest), how the heck should Roberts, much less anyone, know whether being abused by a priest led to his being gay?”

    Well, in the case of Thomas he only needs to state that he was sure he was gay prior to even being abused. In several reports when this story first surfaced Thomas said his family sent him to the presit because he was having issues with his sexuality.

  15. Jack! says

    I’m really excited that gay men want to be fathers. I think that’s great.

    I have to say I was wrong about Chip Arndt’s eyebrows. A week or so ago I said they were poorly maintained. I looked at his picture that linked to Nadine Smith’s comments and it’s clear that he has great eyebrows. Nadine is right about everything she said.

    How much do you want to bet that English muslims will band with christians to get gay-themed books banned? If kids are going to church then they can read these books because I am sure they are talking about homosexuality in there.

    I won’t pick a canidate until close to the primaries. I really don’t like Obama’s and Edwards’ embrace of religion. Obama has said that Democrats should not be afraid to talk about there religious beliefs. I don’t like that. It will only make this country even worse. What this country needs is LESS religion and better education. The past 6+ years have been one disaster after another because the administration believes god is on their side or god speaks through them.

    Arkansas politicans are trying to score political points. Once again walking over gay people to do it.

    I’m really disappointed in the French.

  16. Dan says

    That Radar article again references the OHSU study, but I believe it again misstates the study as having ‘changed gay ewes to straight’ which was not the case, as the study’s author corrected…

    …ugh and we know there are identical twins, 1 straight 1 gay, so it’s not just in the genes.

    The Radar article is unnecessarily sensationalistic. However, I would definitely want to keep an eye out for these genetic technologies, IMO some of them should be banned or regulated.

  17. el polacko says

    had roberts been pre-pubescent at the time the priest came on to him, i would feel much differently about his story. but when a gay 15-year old and a gay 19-year old have sex with a handsome man not that much older than themselves, again and again for a period of several years, that’s not pedophilia nor abuse.. that’s a relationship. all their boo-hoo-ing about how they now regret that relationship said to me that they both have problems that go beyond their early sexual experiences.. more likely related to their conservative and religious up-bringings.
    when a str8 teen beds the hot female teacher the prevailing attitude is “that lucky guy!” but when a gay teen beds the handsome teacher/priest, we’re horrified ??
    i’m not.

  18. Jeff says

    In response to the Thomas Roberts’ inquiry, I (being male) was molested by a female when I was young, and still turned out gay. Apples and Oranges in that comparison

  19. John says

    el polacko

    Please don’t blame the victim. You are playing on the myth that gays will have sex with any good looking men. Thomas and Goles who were both questioning their sexuality and went to the priest for help and he took advantage of them for years. And there were other cases at Calvert Hall College High School where boy between the ages 14-18 were also abuse for years by priest and one of them committed suicide after he graduation. You could read these cases at bishop-accountability.org.

    And according to your logic all the cases that involving nuns seuxal abusing boy between 14-18 should be all dismiss because they should be so luckly they score and they of could of stop it if they wanted to. In one case, one boy was sexual abuse by a nun when he was 16 in 1980s and continue for years. He describe how hard it was for him to forward and because of the abuse, he could not hold down a relationship with women and turn to drug to cope. That nun admitted to the abuse and plead guity. If you still want to the read more about these cases go to SNAP, The Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests.

    As one abuse victim put it

    “Unless you have been sexual abuse yourself, you can’t understand what we went through. You will never understand the power the abuser have over us. So please stop judging us and telling us it partly our fault.”

  20. Nick says

    I just got something to say about gay marriage…

    And I would bet that this has already been debated but well…

    What is the big deal with gay people getting married?

    who are we hurting? let all those who are personally damaged by two gay people get married step forward.

    Why is it that people can’t let other live and let live?

  21. Jeff from Arkansas says

    I just wanted to say that I am from Arkansas. Mike Huckabee is no longer the governor (thank god!) It is Mike Beebe who is a Democrat, and most definately not a Southern Baptist Preacher. I doesn’t mean that is legislation is any less hateful, I just wanted to make sure that the facts were represented. As the linked article pointed out, this was really already the policy, they were just making it official.
    Gay Arkansans like myself, just have to perservere and try to change from the inside. It’s a slow process.

  22. Genko says

    I was shocked by the sad story of Thomas Roberts. That “father” Jeff needs to be locked up and the key thrown away. I am sure the Cardinal made a deal with the DA to get him that SHORT sentence. I remain a Catholic despite the SOB’s who lead the Catholic Church heron earth. I wonder if Thomas Roberts left the Church? It took courage for him to come out with his story; let’s give him the credit he is due.

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