Talk to your children
Be the first to talk to your children
In regard to discussing difficult topics with your children: Better to be a year or two early – than five minutes too late. Often the first person your children hear information from, they will consider to be the expert. So you be first!
If everyone else is doing, or saying, a particular thing, does that make it right?
Is it unkind to disagree with another person, particularly a friend or family member? Do we always have to agree with everyone? How do you disagree, but still be kind?
When someone is doing something that could cause them harm, how should we respond? When is it appropriate to say something?
Create opportunities for discussion
Have you ever heard anyone discuss being LGBT? Have you read or been taught about it in school? What did you think? How did that make you feel? (Create the opportunity to address any misconceptions about LGBT – keeping age sensitivity in mind).
Importance of both a mom and dad
How do you benefit from knowing your mom and your dad and being raised by them? Do you think all children should have that same opportunity?
Talk to family members and friends
"Monogamous" Marriage vs. "Faithful" Marriage
Discuss the difference between “monogamous” and “faithful” marriage. Would heterosexual marriages benefit from following the common pattern of homosexual unions?
Concern for the consequences
Should a concern for the consequences of LGBT behavior and lifestyle be considered an indication of hatred or bigotry? Why or why not?
Is sexual orientation unchangeable?
Teenage lesbians have significantly higher out-of-wedlock pregnancy rates than their heterosexual peers. Is this consistent with the media and cultural message that sexual orientation is locked in and unchangeable? What are some reasons teenage gay males are impregnating their sexual partners more often than their heterosexual peers?
Engage the Broader Community
Monitor your child's school
Monitor your child’s school, be wary of the normalization and promotion of LGBT behavior that seeps in through all aspects of education: curriculums, library books, clubs, athletics, as well as attitudes of teachers/administration. Know your rights as a parent. Be well-organized and not afraid to speak up.
Monitor your library
Monitor your local public library. Watch not only for problematic books, but be aware of library-sponsored activities that are LGBT-advocacy oriented. (Drag Queen story hours, movie nights, historical revisionism, etc.)
Be wary of LGBT advocacy groups
Gay-Straight Alliance in schools can be problematic. Rather than simply teaching students to treat LGBT with respect, these alliances are often a gateway for mainstreaming same-sex behavior and lifestyle to students.
Be very wary of municipal, state and federal attempts to pass non-discrimination laws on the basis of SOGI (Sexual Orientation/Gender Identity) as these laws usually include “public accommodation/public services” language – language that may compromise religious freedom and women’s privacy and safety rights. Example: “The Equality Act.”
Dangers of "Public Accommodation"
“Public accommodation” language becomes a tool for diminishing your parental rights, freedom of religion, rights of conscience, and free speech. If you are inclined to support language of “compromise,” make sure that only non-discrimination in the areas of 1) employment and 2) housing are written into the law. If “public accommodation” is included in the law, insist upon strong religious freedom exemptions for individuals as well as religious organizations. And, insist upon protection for women’s privacy, safety and opportunity rights.
Talking Points- Sexual Orientation
Gay and lesbian individuals, themselves, report being significantly more likely to choose to attend the very churches that teach a more traditional sexual ethic than they do so-called “welcoming and affirming” churches.
All countries that keep data on the mental health of LGBT individuals show higher rates of mental health complications as compared to the general population, regardless of changes in attitudes and policies concerning LGB-identified individuals.
After the legalization of same-sex marriage, one would assume because of the rise in acceptance there would be a reduction in suicide rate, yet in Sweden, the suicide rate for gay individuals remained nearly three times that of married opposite-sex couples.
In Sweden, the rate of gay males suffering from lifetime suicidal ideation is 140 percent greater than the general population and the same measure for women is 110 percent higher. The rate for bisexuals is even higher, with females 250 percent more likely and bisexual men 160 percent.
Each year a young person postpones labeling themselves as “homosexual” reduces the likelihood of suicidal attempts by 20 percent.
G. Remadfedi, et.al. “Risk Factors of Attempted Suicide in Gay and Bisexual Youth,” Pediatrics 87 (1991): 869-875.
The most dramatically gay-friendly places in the world still have incredibly and disproportionately high rates of suicides among their gay and lesbian individuals. In the Netherlands, youth who engage in homosexual activity are:
four times more likely to suffer major depression;
almost three times as likely to suffer generalized anxiety disorder;
nearly four times as likely to experience conduct disorder;
four times as likely to commit suicide;
five times as likely to have nicotine dependence;
six times as likely to suffer multiple disorders;
more than six times as likely to have attempted suicide.
Theo G.M. Sandforte et al., “Same-Sex Sexual Behavior and Psychiatric Disorders: Findings from the Netherlands Mental Health Survey and Incidence,” Archives of General Psychiatry 58, 10 (2001): 85-91. (For other studies go here and here.)
“Many LGB, themselves, don’t blame discrimination or stigma. Only 21 percent of individuals who identify as same-sex or bi-attracted said their attempted suicide was “highly related” to their sexual orientation. Forty-three percent said it was “not related” in any way.”
Anthony R. D’Augelli, et al., “Suicidality Patterns and Sexual Orientation-Related Factors Among Lesbian, Gay, and Bisexual Youths,” Journal of Suicide and Life Threatening Behavior, 31, 3 (2001): 250-264.
Fifty-five percent of lesbians reported physical violence in their relationships, 14 percent reported sexual abuse, and 84 percent reported emotional abuse.
Susan C. Turrell, A Descriptive Analysis of Same-Sex Relationship Violence for a Diverse Sample, Journal of Family Violence 13 (2000): 281-293.
The unions of gay males break up at almost twice the rate of their heterosexual peers and lesbian unions break up at twice the rate of gay unions.
Gunnar Andersson, Turid Noack, Ane Seierstad and Harald Weedon-Fekjær, “The Demographics of Same-Sex Marriages in Norway and Sweden,” Demography 43, no. 1 (2006): 79-98.
Homosexually-experienced men and women reported higher lifetime use of illicit drugs and were more likely to report one or more symptoms of drug dependence than exclusively heterosexual adults. Homosexually-experienced women report more alcohol abuse, drinking more frequently, consuming larger amounts and are more likely to suffer from alcohol and drug dependency syndrome.
S.D. Cochran, et.al., “Prevalence of non-medical drug use and dependence among homosexually active men and women in the US Population,” Addiction, 99 8 (2004): 989-98.
Centers for Disease Control data show that lesbian, gay, and bisexual high school students are at substantial risk for serious health outcomes as compared to their peers.
Sexual Risk Behaviors: HIV, STD, & Teen Pregnancy Prevention, https://www.cdc.gov/healthyyouth/sexualbehaviors/ accessed 1/3/2018.
The rate of primary and secondary syphilis among MSM (men who have sex with men) is more than 46 times that of other men and more than 71 times that of women.
Centers for Disease Control, CDC Analysis Provides New Look at Disproportionate Impact of HIV and Syphilis among U.S. Gay and Bisexual Men, Press Release, Wednesday, March 10, 2010.
In a secular arena, use secual arguments
Although it may be religious principles that motivate you; when you are working to influence public policy, you should use secular arguments. You’ll want to craft your arguments and talking points using verbiage and facts that appeal to the largest numbers. Religious arguments, quoting scriptures or church leaders can be counterproductive. Unfortunately, many individuals tune out the moment they hear someone using religious language or arguments. The person using religious argument is viewed as not credible.
Please understand, we are not saying religious arguments don’t have merit – they absolutely do. But, know your audience. In a secular arena – which the public square usually is – use secular arguments. To best influence people, stick to the basic formula of delivering relevant research combined with well-thought out stories and examples. Do yourself a favor and don’t create “wince” moments for your associates and allies; save religious arguments for one-on-one conversations or religious settings.
“It’s quite strange to expect people to conform to your morals because you quoted a book they don’t read.” -Benjamin Sledge