Statistics vary on the number of homosexuals in our society, ranging from one out of seven to one out of fifteen men and considerably fewer lesbian women. There are perhaps 25 million homosexual men and women in the U.S., a quarter of whom may be “declared” or “out of the closet.”
Factors affecting this issue are numerous:
The growing number of homosexuals who have announced their preference.
Changing mores and acceptance of homosexuality:
By the media.
By the American Psychiatric Association.
By counselors and sex education specialists.
The political power of gays.
The Biblical teaching (not agreed upon by both sides).
The interpretation of Scripture and the stated position of churches.
The AIDS epidemic.
A swing back to conservative values in our society.
There are multiple questions basic to this issue as well:
How early in life is homosexual preference a reality?
Can homosexual preference be permanently changed?
Is practiced homosexuality wrong-socially and morally? Is it a threat to family and society?
Is homosexuality a form of retarded sexual development?
Should employers, religious or secular, be able to discriminate against the civil rights of gays (schools, churches, Salvation Army)?
Should gays have the right to marry and adopt children?
What are the reasons for homophobia and how should it be handled?
Can a person or organization believe homosexuality to be wrong without injury to a homosexual’s rights and human dignity?