In 2009, when the Supreme Court of India wished to legalise homosexuality there arose a controversy. The following is adapted from what I wrote in my blog at that time. I agree with the editorial of The Hindu that the present decision of the Supreme Court to consider homosexuality a legal offence is “a retrograde decision.”
Bruce Bagemihl, a biologist from Seattle, WA, found that in zoos, at least 5% of Humboldt penguin pairs are gay. He prepared an encyclopaedic survey of homosexual or transgender behaviour among more than 190 species, including butterflies and other insects. Homosexuality, according to that voluminous study, is not rare among animals.
When it comes to human beings, "Research suggests that the homosexual orientation is in place very early in the life cycle, possibly even before birth. It is found in about ten percent of the population, a figure which is surprisingly constant across cultures, irrespective of the different moral values and standards of a particular culture." (Statement on Homosexuality, American Psychological Association, July, 1994)
Most human sexuality researchers believe that one's sexual orientation is fixed and unchangeable. Various methods were employed in the past to bring the “deviant” homosexuals back to the right path. Lesbians had their breasts amputated. The perfectly healthy uteri of some lesbians were removed. Gays were given aversion therapy; e.g. they were shown pictures of naked men and simultaneously shocked with electricity. Other "treatments" included: brain surgery in the form of frontal lobotomies, castration, counselling and psychotherapy, drug therapy: e.g. animal-organ extracts, cocaine, oestrogen, testosterone, and positive therapy: e.g. men were asked to masturbate and then were shown pictures of women just before orgasm. The success rate of these therapies in actually changing clients' sexual orientation appears to have been between 0% and something less than 0.1%.
Studies also show that homosexual couples are as faithful to their partners as the heterosexual ones.
What I conclude is that there are some individuals, both men and women, who are different from the majority in their sexual orientation. Research so far seems to prove that this difference is quite natural and cannot be altered. Hence we’d better accept it as natural enough and let them live their life the way they seem it best.
I think the mistake we commit is to judge things by the majority’s opinion. The majority are heterosexual and hence they think that homosexuality is abnormal, unnatural and hence morally wrong. Was the majority ever right? My experience is that the majority is just mediocrity. Why should mediocrity decide the fates of all the creatures on the earth?
If homosexuality poses a threat to mankind in general it should be seen as a threat and dealt with too as such. But is it any threat? There is no evidence of that. The gays and lesbians live their life in as peaceful ways as other human beings do. So why not let them live their life as they wish?