Religious Right Blames Gays For Mark Foley / Republican Leadership Scandal
The Family Research Council - one of America's most prominent Religious Right groups - has carefully considered the ramifications of the scandal faced by Republican leaders in the U.S. House after the Speaker and others were warned long ago one of their members was sending inappropriate e-mails to underage pages and now know who is to blame:
Democrats seeking to exploit the resignation of Rep. Mark Foley (R-FL) are right to criticize the slow response of Republican congressional leaders to his communications with male pages. But neither party seems likely to address the real issue, which is the link between homosexuality and child sexual abuse. Foley, an unmarried 52-year-old representative, had always refused to answer questions about his sexual orientation. Now that his emails and messages to teenage male pages have been revealed, it appears clear that Foley is a homosexual with a particular attraction to underage boys. While pro-homosexual activists like to claim that pedophilia is a completely distinct orientation from homosexuality, evidence shows a disproportionate overlap between the two. Although almost all child molesters are male and less than 3% of men are homosexual, about a third of all child sex abuse cases involve men molesting boys--and in one study, 86% of such men identified themselves as homosexual or bisexual. Ignoring this reality got the Catholic Church into trouble over abusive priests, and now it is doing the same to the House GOP leadership. They discounted or downplayed earlier reports concerning Foley's behavior--probably because they did not want to appear "homophobic." The Foley scandal shows what happens when political correctness is put ahead of protecting children.
Of course, there is no serious scientific evidence that suggests that gay men are more likely to molest children than straight men. FRC provides no sources for the statistics they do list. What's the truth?
"Gregory M. Herek is a Professor of Psychology at the University of California at Davis (UCD). He received his Ph.D. in social psychology from UCD in 1983, then was a postdoctoral fellow at Yale University. He subsequently served as a faculty member at Yale and the Graduate Center of the City University of New York before returning to UCD, first as a research psychologist and later as a tenured professor," according to his biography on the UCD website. He writes:
Members of disliked minority groups are often stereotyped as representing a danger to the majority society's most vulnerable members. Historically, Black men in the United States were often falsely accused of raping White women, and commonly lynched as a result. Jews in the Middle Ages were accused of murdering Christian babies in ritual sacrifices.
In a similar fashion, gay people have often been portrayed as a threat to children....
In recent years, antigay activists have routinely asserted that gay people are child molesters. This argument was often made in debates about the Boy Scouts of America's policy to exclude gay scouts and scoutmasters. It also was raised in connection with recent scandals about the Catholic church's attempts to cover up the abuse of young males by priests....
The empirical research does not show that gay or bisexual men are any more likely than heterosexual men to molest children. This is not to argue that homosexual and bisexual men never molest children. But there is no scientific basis for asserting that they are more likely than heterosexual men to do so.
Dr. Herek's well researched (and footnoted) article Facts About Homosexuality and Child Molestation is available online.
Gays aren't the problem here.
The problem is the corrupt leadership of the Republican Party which apparently desired so deeply to stay in power they covered-up possible sex crimes against children in an effort to retain a safe Congressional seat in Florida.