Since Dr. Anderson first issued his statement some two years ago before the United States Congress, citizens holding conflicting positions are still battling furiously over the same issues that Dr. Anderson articulated in a manner which helped moved along the conversation toward a basis in reason and fact.
Dr. Ryan T. Anderson identifies key considerations and consequences which are fundamental to current conversations regarding human sexuality, gender identity and civil liberties. Many societies are juggling competing issues, issues which juggle like chainsaws or flaming torches. The question is, which end of the chainsaw or torch will a given society grasp?
Dr. Anderson's informed critique of the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) proposed in 2015 is an important survey of issues which could "threaten the freedom of citizens and their associations to affirm their religious or moral convictions". Dr. Anderson's critique might provide useful clarifications that could contribute to a deeper understanding of the issues in order to avoid complicating an already complex conversation. Dr. Anderson's forthright analysis of research could help purify conversations of unnecessary rancour and obfuscation.
Can opponents agree to engage in reasoned debate based on empirical facts not feelings?
Social science research continues to show that sexual orientation, unlike race, color, and ethnicity, is neither a clearly defined concept nor an immutable characteristic of human beings. Basing federal employment law on a vaguely defined concept such as sexual orientation, especially when our courts have a wise precedent of limiting suspect classes to groups that have a clearly-defined shared characteristic, would undoubtedly cause problems for many well-meaning employers.
Despite the effort of ENDA’s legislative drafters to confine “sexual orientation” to homosexuality, heterosexuality, and bisexuality, the logic of self-defined “orientation” is not so easily cabined. . . . Even polyamory, “a preference for having multiple romantic relationships simultaneously,” has been defended as “a type of sexual orientation for purposes of anti-discrimination law” in a 2011 law review article.
It is important to retrieve the singularity of the racial basis for these laws…. the English colonies stand out as the first secular authorities to nullify and criminalize intermarriage on the basis of race or color designations.