Girls, Are You Hip Enough?

October 29, 2008 | 95 comments
By

I kissed a girl and I liked it
The taste of her cherry chapstick
I kissed a girl just to try it
I hope my boyfriend don’t mind it
It felt so wrong
It felt so right
Don’t mean I’m in love tonight

Not long ago, Reed and I headed to a local hotel for an overnight date. Late that evening, when Reed dozed off and I found myself somewhat awake with nothing to read but the Bible and the Book of Mormon in the nightstand drawer (not my preferred late-night reading material), I reached for the remote.

I should’ve opted for the scriptures.

This was never the way I planned
Not my intention
I got so brave, drink in hand
Lost my discretion
It’s not what, I’m used to
Just wanna try you on
I’m curious for you
Caught my attention

We don’t have cable TV at my house (or satellite, or whatever). The only cable I’ve watched in the past decade has been in the hospital, where channel selection is still limited. (TLC, anyone?) If I’d been more aware of today’s cable fare, maybe I wouldn’t have been so shocked when I flipped to Showtime and discovered “The L Word.”It only took a few seconds to realize I wasn’t in Kansas anymore. One moment Marlee Matlin was very sad about something-or-other, and the next moment she was writhing on the bed with her girlfriend, with one hand down her own pants to help things along.

Says Wiki: “The L Word is a television drama series on Showtime that portrays the lives of a group of lesbian, bisexual and transgender women and men and their friends, family and lovers in the trendy Los Angeles-area city of West Hollywood.” The Wiki page even includes a helpful chart used on the show to illustrate the tangled web of affairs.

Of course, this show is hardly the first to have sexual activity as its premise. Even given the homosexual element, I was ready to chalk it up as (trashy) entertainment for consenting adults. But then, not long afterward, I heard the song.

No, I don’t even know your name
It doesn’t matter,
You’re my experimental game
Just human nature,
It’s not what,
Good girls do
Not how they should behave
My head gets so confused
Hard to obey

I was driving along in my pimped-out 12-passenger van full o’ kids when I first heard Katy Perry’s catchy little tune about smooching a random girl at a party. Now, I don’t practice much censorship when it comes to music in my home (or my car). I haven’t fully outgrown my adolescent penchant for edgy indie rock, and when I’m in certain moods, I crank the Pixies or Spoon up to eleven and pound the steering wheel (or the kitchen counter). But as soon as the lyrics to “I Kissed a Girl” made their way from the airwaves to my brainwaves, my hand lunged for the tuner and my ears started smoking.

“What was that?” I asked my kids. “What was that??”

“It’s just some dumb song,” my fifteen-year-old daughter said.

Hardly. Turns out, it’s a chart-topping, award-nominated, multi-nation megahit with 24 million views on YouTube.

Us girls we are so magical
Soft skin, red lips, so kissable
Hard to resist so touchable
Too good to deny it
Ain’t no big deal, it’s innocent

Here’s my beef: I don’t think homosexuality should be demonized. But I don’t think it should be normalized. And I certainly don’t think it should be glamorized. I’m particularly concerned about the glamorization of lesbian sexual activity, because women’s sexual orientation has been shown to be much more fluid than men’s, which means women are more susceptible to sociocultural influence on their sexual behavior.

I don’t have my head in the sand about the reality of lesbian attraction. Some young women are going to feel significant, spontaneous sexual attraction to other women. But young women kissing each other simply because it’s cool? If they find themselves aroused–and some certainly will–that can add a whole lotta unnecessary complexity and confusion to a developmental process already fraught with difficulty and danger.

But that’s not even the worst part, imo. What sickens me most is the thought of young women kissing each other because it gets the guys hot.

I kissed a girl and I liked it
The taste of her cherry chap stick
I kissed a girl just to try it
I hope my boyfriend don’t mind it
It felt so wrong
It felt so right
Don’t mean I’m in love tonight
I kissed a girl and I liked it
I liked it

Tags:

95 Responses to Girls, Are You Hip Enough?

  1. Velska on October 29, 2008 at 7:03 am

    I have said before that I know some, who have found their “true” identity/orientation after being seduced by an older person of the same sex. The recruitment is intensifying. Just look at all the “hip” shows out there with homosexuality as a carrying theme, or the “hot” girl acts. Of course, the fact is that a lot of guys are like Joey in Friends. They do like the idea of seeing two girls going at each other.

    Going together with what you’re talking about is the mainstreaming of pornography. If Bratz dolls don’t convince you I don’t know what would.

    I agree with you about the demonization of homosexuality. I also think that the cultural normalization of sexual activity between people of same sex is a trend that is chipping away at the nuclear family, so I talk about it with those, with whom I have any influence.

    Other than that, I think the Law of Chastity together with the Proclamation on the Family cover the issue sufficiently without having to point out homosexual activity, but youth culture today requires that we talk about that, too. Marriage is between a man and a woman, and no sex before marriage is a good foundation.

  2. Adam Greenwood on October 29, 2008 at 7:54 am

    What sickens me most is the thought of young women kissing each other because it gets the guys hot.

    Yep. Its a vicious cycle. As men are allowed to be more brutish, women have to stoop lower to compete for their attention. And, at the same time, avoiding men altogether starts to seem more attractive.

  3. Adam Greenwood on October 29, 2008 at 7:56 am

    Notice the ‘drink in hand’ lyric. Not a coincidence, methinks.

  4. Mark B. on October 29, 2008 at 9:23 am

    I don’t think homosexuality should be demonized.

    Why not?

  5. Sam B. on October 29, 2008 at 9:48 am

    Despite all the sturm and drang (and despite the fact that I’ve never heard the song), this song was essentially written and sung in 1993 or 1994. (I swear it was called “I Kissed a Girl,” but my Google searches just lead me back to the 2008 song.) That song wasn’t very good and didn’t have any significant lasting impact, and neither will this one. I wouldn’t encourage my daughter to listen to it, but that’s because I’d just as soon she listen to jazz, classical, and blues-influenced rock music, all of which have their at-best-mixed messages.

  6. Mark N. on October 29, 2008 at 10:01 am

    I volunteered to be the babysitting priesthood holder in the nursery room (I brought my 15-year-old daughter along for moral support since nobody else had signed up for the task) at last week’s Enrichment lesson for Relief Society, and there were maybe six or seven kids who showed up to be watched for the two hour time period, and one of the little girls there — I think she was probably 6, maybe 7 years old, started singing this song at some point. My daughter picked up on it right away and asked her to stop.

    Six or seven years old.

  7. Kaimi Wenger on October 29, 2008 at 10:05 am

    Good discussion, Kathy. It’s an issue that’s becoming more and more important as faux-lesbianism becomes the next way for girls to act “hot” and get guys’ attention.

    The song has been criticized by liberal commenters as well, for its shallowness and its complete acceptance of that mentality (which is neither women-empowering, nor lesbian-empowering).

    On the other hand, the song drives conservatives absolutely batty.

    Here’s a fun little article at Salon, pointing out one awesome reaction from a church, as well as making some liberal critiques of the song:

    http://www.salon.com/mwt/broadsheet/2008/09/08/church/print.html

  8. Kathryn Lynard Soper on October 29, 2008 at 10:25 am

    Sam (#5): Yes, there was a ’95 song with the same title (by Jill Sobule), and it did stir controversy for a time before dropping off the radar. But we’ve seen a great deal of social change regarding sexuality since ’95, including the explosion of mainstream pornography (which is changing mainstream sexual norms) and the proliferation of unstigmatized homosexuality in the media (a la Ellen and Rosie). Girl-on-girl behavior, which used to be deviant sexual behavior found primarily in closed-door adult venues, is now trendy in high schools. I don’t think we should take Katy Perry’s song lightly.

  9. Bro. Jones on October 29, 2008 at 10:30 am

    I don’t like the song nor what it stands for, but as I’ve always said, anyone dumb enough to try something they heard in a song is, well, dumb.

  10. Kathryn Lynard Soper on October 29, 2008 at 10:32 am

    Thanks for the link, Kaimi. (It includes a photo of a sign outside a church: “I kissed a girl and I liked it. Then I went to hell.”) Great segue for my reply to Mark B. (#4).

    Mark, I think pulpit-pounding condemnation of homosexuality is counterproductive. It only pushes young people with budding same-sex attraction away from God. The Church’s current statement on the issue notably avoids fire-and-brimstone rhetoric, thank goodness.

  11. Kathryn Lynard Soper on October 29, 2008 at 10:33 am

    Bro. Jones: Teenagers are famous for being dumb. And, as Mark N. points out, highly vulnerable children are being affected as well.

  12. MikeInWeHo on October 29, 2008 at 11:00 am

    re: 4

    Because it’s wrong to demonize an entire community of people who are your neighbors?

    Besides, wouldn’t it be more accurate to demonize HBO for producing stuff like that? FWIW, The L Word is a very dumb show. Pete and I always laugh at the publicity which mentions “their glamorous West Hollywood lifestyle…”

    We’d be knee deep in paying bills, groceries, helping our daughter with homework, etc and say “Come see OUR glamorous West Hollywood lifestyle!”

  13. Jonovitch on October 29, 2008 at 11:07 am

    I saw this video on YouTube a few months ago. The tune and beat are *extremely* catchy. After I saw it, the song stayed in my head for days.

    A short while later, in a deacons’ quorum lesson on media/entertainment, I referenced this song, without naming it — how fun it’s music yet insidious it’s message was. Of course they wanted to know what song I was talking about. Of course I told them no way. I’m sure they’ve heard it, but I wasn’t about to encourage it, even by mentioning it.

    A week or so ago, I caught a few seconds of the song again, and once more, just from that brief exposure, I couldn’t get it out of my head for a day or so.

    I’m no prude, but I know something bad when I see it. I consider myself somewhat of a communications expert, especially regarding persuasion. This video hits the ball out of the park. “It felt so wrong, it felt so right” … “It doesn’t matter” … “Just human nature” … “It’s innocent” All with a very singable melody and a beat that would move anyone to tap their toe and bob their head.

    Remember the supposedly Satanic metal bands of the 1980s? Years later, they laugh and tell you, “Of course we weren’t into that, but it sold!” I’m afraid the alternate-sexuality genre is the new metal band. “It’s just a job, right? You go to work, and so do I, right?” Of course Katy Perry isn’t really into it, but hey it’s selling! And don’t think others haven’t noticed.

    Experimental sexual activity among college-aged women and teenage girls is increasingly dramatically. (I don’t have the studies on hand, so you’ll have to accept my uncited claim for now.) This is not a good thing for girls or boys, or, women or men, or, mothers or fathers. Normalizing abnormal sexual behavior is not okay for society.

    Jon

  14. Lizzy on October 29, 2008 at 11:27 am

    Does anyone know the quote by a GA, at least 12 or more years old and it basically talks about society normalising the abnormal to make it the new norm.

  15. mlu on October 29, 2008 at 11:39 am

    The human brain has considerable plasticity when it comes to sexual attraction.

    A group that doesn’t stigmatize sexual relations outside of marriage is going to have considerable trouble now and in coming years keeping its young people out of the thousands of snares being laid for them.

  16. Peter LLC on October 29, 2008 at 11:44 am

    Katy Perry recently hosted a show on a local music station and said, for the record, that she is in fact straight, even bashful. Back to your normal programming.

  17. ECS on October 29, 2008 at 11:45 am

    “I was driving along in my pimped-out 12-passenger van. . .”

    I’d wager that a decade ago the use of the phrase “pimped-out” would have prompted a post about declining morals (assuming blogs existed back then, of course). Now, however, a word previously used solely in the context of prostitution (“pimp”) is mainstream and edgy.

    Lighten up, a little?

  18. Mark Brown on October 29, 2008 at 11:48 am

    I understand and agree with the commenters here who find this song objectionable.

    I also want to ask that we consider the lyrics from this song by Frank Sinatra and then ask ourselves if both songs are equally objectionable. If not, why? Which one is worse? Which principles of Mormonism can we draw upon to support our conclusions?

    Strangers in the night exchanging glances
    Wondring in the night
    What were the chances wed be sharing love
    Before the night was through.

    Something in your eyes was so inviting,
    Something in you smile was so exciting,
    Something in my heart,
    Told me I must have you.

    Strangers in the night, two lonely people
    We were strangers in the night
    Up to the moment
    When we said our first hello.
    Little did we know
    Love was just a glance away,
    A warm embracing dance away.

  19. Kathryn Lynard Soper on October 29, 2008 at 11:50 am

    I’m afraid the alternate-sexuality genre is the new metal band.

    You may be right, Jon. And the playful, top-40 tone makes kids even more susceptible.

    lizzy, I’m not sure which quote you’re talking about, but Pres. Monson has often quoted Alexander Pope’s verse from “Essay on Man.”

    Sin is a monster of such awful mien,
    That to be hated needs but to be seen,
    But seen too oft, familiar with face,
    We first endure,
    Then pity,
    Then embrace.

  20. CS Eric on October 29, 2008 at 11:56 am

    I still remember the throwaway song from Elton John’s Goodbye Yellow Brick Road album, “All the Young Girls Love Alice”:

    All the young girls love Alice,
    Tender young Alice, they say,
    Come over and see me,
    Come over and please me.
    Alice, it’s my turn today.

  21. Kathryn Lynard Soper on October 29, 2008 at 11:58 am

    ECS, the linguistic evolution of “pimp” may or may not have moral implications, but I don’t think it makes a fitting comparison to the topic of the post. As far as I know, there’s no connection between the newest slang and a rise in prostitution among teenage girls. I wish the same could be said about trendy lesbianism and (worse) girl-on-girl sex for the pleasure of men.

  22. Shelah on October 29, 2008 at 11:59 am

    Last night I was trying to catch up with shows on my TiVo and watched two in succession (Grey’s Anatomy and House) in which female lead characters were “experimenting” with homosexual relationships, although they had both been satisfied in heterosexual relationships in the past.

    I wonder if Katy Perry’s song and these two tv examples undermine the argument that homosexuality is often an inborn trait and lend credence to those who believe it’s a lifestyle choice.

  23. Kathryn Lynard Soper on October 29, 2008 at 12:03 pm

    Peter, it doesn’t matter what Perry’s sexual orientation is. In a way it would be better if she were lesbian. At least then she’d be a poster child for homosexuality instead of homosexual behavior for the pleasure of heterosexuals.

    And I don’t think “bashful” can apply to someone willing to bust homoerotic burlesque moves on video.

  24. Ugly Mahana on October 29, 2008 at 12:07 pm

    Re: 18.

    I see a difference in the use of the double entendre. While love may be a euphemism for improper or even sinful acts, it is also a term we use for the most elevating of emotions. While I am not familiar with the music, the lyrics may be interpreted in an entirely wholesome manner. This is not true of the song criticized here.

  25. Kathryn Lynard Soper on October 29, 2008 at 12:10 pm

    mlu, you may be right, but there are different ways to stigmatize, and as I said before, some are counterproductive. (And, I will add, ungodly).

  26. Keri Brooks on October 29, 2008 at 12:19 pm

    I’ve never heard this song before, but from reading the lyrics, the part that disturbs me the most is “No, I don’t even know your name / It doesn’t matter, / You’re my experimental game.” Society throughout history has turned women into sexual objects. This is yet another continuation of that theme, at a time when we should be beyond that.

  27. Peter LLC on October 29, 2008 at 12:20 pm

    Don’t shoot the messenger; I personally think she is being disingeneous, but that is what she said. For the record.

  28. Nitsav on October 29, 2008 at 12:27 pm

    “But I don’t think it should be normalized. And I certainly don’t think it should be glamorized.”

    Amen and amen.

  29. jimbob on October 29, 2008 at 12:30 pm

    I’ve been thinking for some time that the group that should be most angry about this song is actual lesbians. For years they’ve been working hard to educate society that their sexual preference isn’t something they choose, but rather something that chose them and which is part of who they are. Now along comes Katy Perry, who baldly intimates that lesbianism is purely situational, that it’s something you really only do when you get drunk and want to titillate your boyfriend.

  30. Hunter on October 29, 2008 at 12:30 pm

    Kathryn Lynard Soper said, “In a way it would be better if she were lesbian.” Did anyone see SNL’s spoof of Perry’s song? They pretty much mocked the suggestion that her song substantively pushes the hetero boundaries, and instead suggested that her song stands for nothing more than Perry is just a lesbian. She likes to kiss girls. Pretty funny stuff.

  31. Thomas Parkin on October 29, 2008 at 12:38 pm

    \”Of course Katy Perry isn’t really into it\”

    I\’d put my money against that statement.

    FYI – my strange experience is that bisexuality is more the norm, certainly among women but also among men. There was once a poll conducted among the fringe group I took part in (goth-industrial-fetish), about how members identified themselves sexually. Of something like 120 respondents, there was a single person who identified as gay, and about 60 that identified as bi-sexual. Not that this would likely hold true in the population at large,- this was a somewhat unusual group of people,- but it certainly caught my attention at the time.

    ~

  32. Raymond Takashi Swenson on October 29, 2008 at 12:41 pm

    The Word of Wisdom warns us about the evil designs of men in the last days, who will use addicting substances to gain wealth and power. The deregulation of sexual communication on grounds of “freedom of speech” has enabled sexually oriented businesses–including movies and music and women’s clothing–to grow in power and influence. And the latest twist is that anyone who opposes anything-goes sexual behavior is going to be punished by government for intolerance, even for the “crime” of declining to be involved in supporting it. That has already happened with government rulings in Arizona that a photographer MUST accept a job taking pictures of a Lesbian “commitment ceremony” (which has no legal status in that state) and that a OB-GYN specialist MUST assist a lesbian in having artificial insemination so she can raise a daughter in a lesbian household.

    The irony is that the explicit First Amendment right to “free exercise of religion” was held by the US Supreme Court to be insufficient to justify voluntary, religious-based polygamy, but that a right to unlimited sexual behavior (adopted by the US Supreme Court) that has never been endorsed through democratic processes is beginning to be held to include the right to force other people to endorse it, despite their religious beliefs. As the dissenters in the California Supreme Court pointed out, the rationale for making homosexual marriage a constitutional right also extends to polygamy. So government is now coming around to the position that things you do as a duty to God are not protected from government coercion, but things you do to satisfy your unbridled sexual cravings are sacrosanct and sovereign, immune from decisions made through democratic governing processes. Indeed, religious freedom is being held to be subordinate to sexual freedom.

  33. queuno on October 29, 2008 at 1:04 pm

    Here’s my beef: I don’t think homosexuality should be demonized. But I don’t think it should be normalized. And I certainly don’t think it should be glamorized.

    So in other words, it should be tolerated, but not accepted?

  34. BHodges on October 29, 2008 at 1:13 pm

    I object to the song on the grounds that it represents the general crappiness of pop music nowadays.

  35. queuno on October 29, 2008 at 1:29 pm

    @34 –

    Indeed. It doesn’t have the same melodic stirrings as Quiet Riot, Van Halen, Bon Jovi, Def Leppard, or Slayer. Or even Madonna in her talented days.

  36. Jacob F on October 29, 2008 at 1:33 pm

    Look, the song is what it is and there will always be songs out there like this.

    This post does bring up an important discussion, though, and that is that at least in the junior high / high school where I live in Arizona, girls experimenting with other girls is considered cool. It’s socially acceptable for a girl to have a “girlfriend” with whom she holds hands, goes on dates with, kisses, etc., and then for one or both to switch back to a boy when the two break up. Several young women in our stake have been pulled into this. The girls develop feelings of affection for each other, there is jealousy in the wake of break-ups, and yes girls getting into for social reasons alone (no initial sexual attraction to other girls) may experience sexual arousal while experimenting. Is this confusing for a developing young woman? Yes.

    This is also a trend among boys (although not nearly as prevalent).

    I think the song may influence some, but it is more an affirmation of what is already going on than anything else, just like “Strangers in the Night” is an affirmation of one-night stands.

  37. Kathryn Lynard Soper on October 29, 2008 at 1:56 pm

    queuno (#33): Depends on how you’re defining terms. Any reasonable person accepts the fact that homosexuality exists, and that for some it’s not a choice. But I don’t accept it as benign or beneficial. Likewise, I have no reservations about having homosexual friends, neighbors, ward members, etc. But I have no tolerance for material that promotes homosexuality or homosexual behavior as harmless and/or trendy.

    Jacob F, I’ve heard about (but haven’t observed) similar situations in our local schools. I don’t know where the song fits in the chicken-and-egg dynamic, but if it didn’t initiate the trend, it’s certainly inflating it.

  38. Andrea R on October 29, 2008 at 2:32 pm

    All commentary on the homosexual themes of the song aside, I just think it’s a crappy song. I heard it at the gym and it sounded just like every other techno-pop song with the same synthesized drum beat and vocorder over-produced singing that is on the radio right now. Give me some Arcade Fire, Mountain Goats, or Twilight Singers over this drek.

  39. Kathryn Lynard Soper on October 29, 2008 at 2:38 pm

    Andrea, you’re my kind of girl.

  40. jjohnsen on October 29, 2008 at 3:20 pm

    “I object to the song on the grounds that it represents the general crappiness of pop music nowadays. ”

    Amen.

    As for the content, has there ever been a time that adults have liked or approved of their kids music? I remember my mom railing against the group Barenaked Ladies because of their name, only to hear their music and realize there wasn’t anything more harmless than their songs.

    Just like she thought my music was horrible, I’m pretty sure I’ll think my daughter’s music is horrible.

    I’m actually more upset about the girl in this song putting on a show to make her man happy than any homosexual content.

  41. Thomas Parkin on October 29, 2008 at 3:21 pm

    Hey Kathryn,

    Just an hour ago I was in Desert Book in Logan, where I’m now living, and saw your Motherhood book in the new releases. I thought, shazaam!, synchronicity. (Maybe now that I’m Utah for a spell I’ll have these experiences more often. I tell you there is little as disorienting as walking into a supermarket and having a sign announce to me that the Emma Smith movie, which I scarcely knew existed, is ‘the must see movie of the year.’)

    Congrats on that. As soon as I have money, if I ever have money again, I’ll pick that up. :)

    ~

  42. Jane on October 29, 2008 at 3:21 pm

    I can personally attest to the fact that women’s sexuality (sexual identity?) is (can be?) pretty (extremely) fluid — overt influences are not even necessary to confuse sheltered, curious women (at places like BYU in 1996).

    I hate generalizations (in general), but women are often loving, caring, sensitive, emotionally vulnerable (esp. as teenagers) and open. We seek out friendships and emotional/physical closeness. If you think about what women often say the like about sex (the closeness, the intimacy, etc), it’s not hard to imagine that they could (want to) turn to another woman, esp. at a stage in life when the boys/men are often immature.

    I was pretty on the fence about stuff like Prop 8 for awhile, not wanting to be on the wrong side of civil rights issues. But the trend towards normalization/glamorization is scarier than almost anything else I’ve seen in my life. Scary for myself and scary for my children.

    I think it’s telling, also, that the primary outline for next year is so centered on the Family Proclamation. I doubt any one of us doesn’t know of some family in our immediate connection that has not been devastated by pornography/infidelity/homosexuality.

    I’ve realized recently (again) that God’s commandments aren’t to limit us or tell us what not to do for the heck of it. But to inform us of how to be happy. Maybe they should be called the “You’ll Be Happier If . . .’s” rather than commandments.

  43. Rameumptom on October 29, 2008 at 3:27 pm

    We are going to lose an entire generation to the whims of sexual gratification and exploration, because the media is so fixated upon it, and parents are no longer in the home to teach and guide them.

    I would suggest we’re going to see in the next 20 years, a huge rise in sexual crimes, as well.

  44. Kathryn Lynard Soper on October 29, 2008 at 3:47 pm

    Thanks, Thomas! Hope you enjoy the book (eventually), and your stay in Utah (despite the inevitable shocks).

    I’ve been thinking about your previous comment (#31)–while I agree it’s pretty unusual for 50% of a group to identify themselves as bisexual, I wouldn’t be surprised if at least 50% of people are susceptible to bisexual arousal.

    Jane (#42), I said something very similar to a friend the other day about the female connection between emotional and sexual intimacy. That’s another reason why young women are especially vulnerable–their close friendships can all too easily take on a sexual element.

  45. kevinf on October 29, 2008 at 5:02 pm

    On stake night at our girls camp this year, as the girls were doing their skits, they sang a variation of this song with the lyrics “I kissed a Frog and I liked it”, which went over the heads of some of the adults, while many others did a quick head snap in their direction. I’m not sure what the aftermath was, but no question in my mind that this song is well known among our YM and YW.

    What caught my attention in the video is that after all the soft core stuff with the girls, Katy Perry wakes up after a dream with a really scruffy looking guy who I doesn’t look all that attractive. Perhaps not so subtle.

    Popular music is always about being subversive and pushing boundaries. Those of us in my age (aging?) group all know that the Beatles wanted to do more than just hold a girls hand. At least lyrics were perhaps more subtle, more clever in their subversiveness, IMO, rather than the sledgehammer approach of a lot of music these days. For examples of classic double entendre lyrics, Cole Porter may have been the master. American Blues music is ripe with it. But subtlety and literacy were involved, and their isn’t much subtlety here.

    Partly because of the “dangerous” appeal of popular music, pulpit pounding only raises the curiosity factor, and puts the average kid on the defensive. The better approach is for parents to be aware, teach the messages of morality in a positive way, and be aware. Did I say be aware?

    Of course, there is the issue of the kids ipod with 9000 tunes and 400 videos that you never touch, see, or hear. I still don’t have an answer for that.

  46. tesseract on October 29, 2008 at 5:26 pm

    haha. my good friend plays bass for Katy Perry. She’s epitomizes everything I hate about music these days.

    Have you heard her other popular song? I’m not even joking, these are the real lyrics

    Ur So Gay

    [VERSE 1]
    I hope you hang yourself with your H&M scarf
    While jacking off listening to mozart
    You bitch and moan about LA
    Wishing you were in the rain reading Hemingway
    You don’t eat meat
    And drive electrical cars
    You’re so indie rock it’s almost an art
    You need SPF 45 just to stay alive

    [VERSE 2]
    You’re so sad maybe you should buy a happy meal
    You’re so skinny you should really Super Size the deal
    Secretly you’re so amused
    That nobody understands you
    I’m so mean cause I cannot get you outta your head
    I’m so angry cause you’d rather MySpace instead
    I can’t believe I fell in love with someone that wears more makeup than me..

    [BRIDGE]
    You walk around like you’re oh so debonair
    You pull em’ down and there’s really nothing there
    I wish you would just be real with me

    [CHORUS]
    You’re so gay and you don’t even like boys
    No you don’t even like
    No you don’t even like
    No you don’t even like boys
    You’re so gay and you don’t even like boys
    No you don’t even like
    No you don’t even like
    No you don’t even like…
    No you don’t even like… PENIS

  47. Starfoxy on October 29, 2008 at 5:47 pm

    I’m with those who’ve said that the most offensive part about this is the performance of lesbian behaviors for the satisfaction of male onlookers.
    This idea of performative lesbianism only further feeds the notion that women don’t (can’t or shouldn’t) experience sexual pleasure or desire directly, but rather that they only experience pleasure through pleasing their partner, or through the secondary effects that often accompany a sexual relationship, such as emotional intimacy. Certainly many women do experience sexual pleasure indirectly, but I find it leads to unhealthy attitudes towards themselves, their bodies, their relationships, and especially sexual behavior.

    Aside from all of that this:
    [Young women's] close friendships can all too easily take on a sexual element.
    bothers me. This ventures awfully close to treating close friendships as a risk factor for homosexual sin. While the two may be connected it would be tragic to spurn friendships because of the risk they pose, just as it would be tragic to denigrate marriage because of the role it plays in domestic violence.

  48. tesseract on October 29, 2008 at 6:16 pm

    So not only does she infer that girls only fool around with other girls to impress men, she also uses “gay” as a derogatory term in one of her songs. Good job. Way to help break down the prejudice against the homosexual community. Although the more I think about it, the more I bet her album is probably just a crude satire on modern teen culture. If so, it doesn’t even matter, kids don’t get it and are just eating it up.

  49. WendyP. on October 29, 2008 at 6:32 pm

    http://abcnews.go.com/Entertainment/Music/Story?id=5256149&page=1

    Katy is the daughter of two pastors and a former Christian singer.

  50. Kathryn Lynard Soper on October 29, 2008 at 6:37 pm

    Starfoxy, I agree that would be tragic. I don’t think young women should avoid close friendships. I’m just saying that this ugly trend might affect young women on more than one level.

    And I agree that this issue only exacerbates already-warped social views re women’s sexuality.

  51. queuno on October 29, 2008 at 6:54 pm

    queuno (#33): Depends on how you’re defining terms. Any reasonable person accepts the fact that homosexuality exists, and that for some it’s not a choice. But I don’t accept it as benign or beneficial. Likewise, I have no reservations about having homosexual friends, neighbors, ward members, etc. But I have no tolerance for material that promotes homosexuality or homosexual behavior as harmless and/or trendy.

    I’ve often said (including in comments here) that we’ve sadly redefined tolerance to mean acceptance, but both extremes. We shouldn’t have to accept anything outside our beliefs, but we do have to tolerate it. Which is a long-winded way of saying, there’s no way my almost 12-year-old gets to keep this on the radio when I hear it. It’s unacceptable.

    (Of course, when I was at BYU, it was commonplace to hear that even tolerance was unacceptable.)

  52. Huston on October 29, 2008 at 7:03 pm

    This song is a product of a very hedonistic generation. It could have been cited as evidence in a great article in the Washington Post from January 4, 2004, called “Partway Gay? For Some Teen Girls, Sexuality Is A Shifting Concept.” It’s not available for free anymore, but if you’re interested in the subject, it’s worth tracking down. That article was the first time I saw the word “heteroflexible.”

    I agree that this goes beyond the current debate over gay relationships; it’s about rampant, unbridled animal lust to a degree so dangerous that the sexy obsessions of, say, Madonna in the 80′s, look almost quaint by comparison. Kids who give themselves over to this mentality are in for a very rough go in life. Good thing the Atonement is real; it truly is the only thing that can save this society.

  53. MikeInWeHo on October 29, 2008 at 7:29 pm

    re: 49

    Well there’s a shocker.

  54. Mark Brown on October 29, 2008 at 7:32 pm

    I realize that we are pretty heavily invested in the idea that each successive generation is worse than its predecessor. But, based solely on the evidence of song lyrics, I think that is a tough case to make. Afficionados of country and western music have been listening to cheating songs for three generations now, and they form the backbone of the conservative Christian movement. And people who grew up listening to rock’n’roll in the 70s might recognize these lyrics:

    Gold coast slave ship bound for cotton fields,
    Sold in a market down in New Orleans.
    Scarred old slaver know he’s doin alright.
    Hear him whip the women just around midnight.
    Ah brown sugar how come you taste so good
    (a-ha) brown sugar, just like a young girl should
    A-huh.

    I’m going to take a wild guess and say that many of us who find Kate Perry’s song offensive have heard Mick and the boys sing Brown Sugar hundreds of times and we haven’t even blinked an eye. Do we honestly think that teenage lesbianism is worse than slavery, beatings, and rape?

    My point here is that culture warriors have a lot of explaining to do if they want to use Kate Perry as an example of the rock bottom expression of popular culture.

  55. Kathryn Lynard Soper on October 29, 2008 at 8:05 pm

    Do we honestly think that teenage lesbianism is worse than slavery, beatings, and rape?

    Of course not.

    I don’t think my concern falls into the category of middle-aged hand-wringing over the rising generation’s taste in music. (btw, jjohnson, instead of my mom scolding me about BNL, it’s my kids!)

    There’s far worse out there than Katy Perry. But the girl-on-girl thing is relatively new to the mainstream, and it’s bringing new problems with it–problems that warrant some consciousness-raising.

  56. Lynne on October 29, 2008 at 9:35 pm

    I think as parents we had better be aware of music that is popular. I loathe this song. The first time I heard it I panicked. Mostly because of how normal it makes the actions seem. I turned it off when I had my 15 year old daughter in the car and she just sat and sang the whole thing to me anyway. Wha???? She said that it is played at school dances (in UT County).

    We as parents need to discuss these things with our kids. And let them know what is wrong. Yes, there have always been \”bad\” songs, it just seems more in your face and accepted lately.

  57. Kathryn Lynard Soper on October 29, 2008 at 10:21 pm

    heteroflexible? perfect!

    Thanks for the tip, Huston. I, too, see stormier times ahead re adolescent sexual behavior.

  58. Jack on October 29, 2008 at 10:58 pm

    Dang, Kathryn. Do you write for a living? That’s a well written post.

    This kind of crappy music has more to do with shock value (imo) than saying anything “meaningful.” An essay by O. S. Card comes to mind wherein he talks about some of the pitfalls that LDS (and all) artists need to avoid–one of them being an adolescent attitude in the creative process.

  59. Bill on October 29, 2008 at 10:59 pm

    I heard Perry sing this song live and it was absolutely horrible. I was embarrassed for her.

    She\’s not the first singer to rise to fame exploiting the fake-lesbian thing however. Anyone remember the two teenage girls in the group t.A.T.u.? Catchy songs and tons of girl-on-girl inuendo– Perry\’s just the latest to realize that this stuff sells really well. So yeah, I agree that this is definitely part of a trend. The popular CW show \”Gossip Girl\” is moving in this direction too. The last episode featured two underage girls dancing intimately together in their underwear, drinks in hand, while some guy casually watched.

    This stuff is everywhere.

  60. Kathryn Lynard Soper on October 29, 2008 at 11:08 pm

    You flatter me, Jack. I like it.

    Yes, I do write. But if I had to live off my royalties, I’d be dead. :)

  61. Ben Pratt on October 30, 2008 at 12:33 am

    Kathryn, this is a very good post, and the comments have been extraordinary.

    My wife is a YW leader, and I sent her the URL, because it seems to me that we as parents and leaders should not only be aware of prevailing social winds, we should also make sure the youth know we know. Open discussion must be the norm.

  62. Mathew on October 30, 2008 at 9:54 am

    Why go to the bother of reproducing and disseminating the lyrics you find so objectionable here? I honestly don’t get it.

  63. Adam Greenwood on October 30, 2008 at 10:13 am

    I don’t like the song nor what it stands for, but as I’ve always said, anyone dumb enough to try something they heard in a song is, well, dumb.

    There are lots of dumb people in this world. Even smart people can be pretty dumb. And all they too are God’s children.

  64. Kathryn Lynard Soper on October 30, 2008 at 10:21 am

    (#62)

    Damn, the secret’s out. Perry’s publicist hired me to write this post.

    Sorry, people. But hey–a girl’s gotta eat somehow.

  65. Adam Greenwood on October 30, 2008 at 10:14 am

    Teenagers, for example, can often be dumb. Shocking but true.

  66. BHodges on October 30, 2008 at 10:28 am

    Can I get a shout out against the sadness of the American Idol culture of music?

  67. Ian Cook on October 30, 2008 at 11:42 am

    I’ll give you a shout out and an Amen. Celebrating mediocre music, what a world.

  68. Mathew on October 30, 2008 at 12:36 pm

    #65,

    Stay classy KLS.

    I’ve read you enough to know you could have made your point just as well without resorting to quoting the lyrics you claim you find objectionable, but you chose not to. I don’t understand why you made that choice. I thought you might want to explain. I guess not. It is, however, a legitimate question to ask an author.

    Your post reminded me of a fellow student who objected to a particular passage in a book we were reading in a lit class. He objected and then, as if to show how very objectionable the passage was, he quoted it. Simultanously quoting and objecting to the supposedly taboo words seemed to arouse within him a frission of excitement. A similar phenomenon can often be observed whenever Mormons discuss pornography.

  69. reisters on October 30, 2008 at 12:54 pm

    I remember my own life as a girl. I was emotionally attracted to boys (had crushes), but I didn\’t feel physical attraction until my later teen years. It bothers me that the power of suggestion really could have had me start wondering and considering becoming emotionally attracted to girls which would then lead to physical attraction.

    I have a daughter that will be in middle school soon. Environment really does affect how a person turns out. Sure, you\’d like to think that everyone can overcome their circumstances. However, we know that when children are raised in certain environents (abusive father for instance) they often imitate that behavior as they get older. Adolescence is such a vulnerable time for kids. I didn\’t realize I would be so scared to send my kids out into the world, but this post really freaks me out. Not only does the homosexuality experimentation freak me out, but the evidence that porn has normalized so many things that men now expect women to do because men have been warped by porn. And even if a man hasn\’t been exposed to porn, it is so evident in our culture that he hears the behavior described enough that he is affected by it. (Or am I wrong?)

  70. Kathryn Lynard Soper on October 30, 2008 at 1:15 pm

    Aw, c’mon, Mathew. It’s the end of a long thread. Let me have some fun.

    I thought the value of quoting the lyrics in this context was pretty transparent, given the discussion that followed. But if not, I’ll spell it out:

    The song bugs me because it’s describing (and promoting) a dangerous social trend. I think quoting the lyrics is the best possible way to raise awareness among adults (which is the purpose of this post). Your classroom comparison doesn’t work for me, because I don’t think the lyrics have any corruptive potential for this audience–quite the opposite, in fact. We need to know what our kids are hearing–specifically–so that we can take compensatory action .

    By contrast, I think Jon was prudent to stick to vague allusion in his deacons’ quorum lesson (#13). Different measures for different audiences.

  71. Kathryn Lynard Soper on October 30, 2008 at 1:29 pm

    reisters, don’t get me wrong: I think emotional intimacy (attraction) between young women is very healthy, as long as they’re not misled by twisted cultural trends. Given the current sexual climate in adolescent circles, I think it’s even healthy for young women to know that it’s normal to feel a hint (or more) of sexual attraction to their close girlfriends. Maybe with that knowledge, they won’t assume they’re lesbian if those impulses come, and they’ll be better equipped to resist acting upon them (and they’ll learn a thing or two about the strong impact of emotional connection on sexual response, which will serve them well in their heterosexual relationships).

    I understand why you’re freaked out. But now you’re better equipped for some straight talk with your daughter.

  72. Bookslinger on October 30, 2008 at 1:44 pm

    KLS, thanks for this post. You’ve eloquently restated things and made better arguments about thiings that I awkwardly put forth in comments at Millennial Star and Mormon Mentality. I was mocked for saying what I think is going to happen. You’ve pointed out that it _is_ happening.

  73. Kathryn Lynard Soper on October 30, 2008 at 1:56 pm

    Thanks, Bookslinger. ButI think Katy Perry should get the credit. She makes a much better case than I can. ;)

    Send some links my way–I didn’t catch those other discussions.

  74. Mathew on October 30, 2008 at 3:18 pm

    No fun allowed at T&S KLS. I thought that was clearly stated in the manual they give to all the permas.

    I sort of figured you were going to chalk it up to a difference in audiences. But I have to tell you, when an adult starts talking about the corruptive potential of song lyrics and rallying the rest of the ‘rents to her cause I just can’t help smirking. I miss those firesides though. Sadly in my thirties I have very little to rebel against.

  75. Kathryn Lynard Soper on October 30, 2008 at 3:47 pm

    Oh, no. Does this mean I’ve officially become my mother?

    You set me up, Mathew. You’ll live to regret it. :)

  76. Bookslinger on October 30, 2008 at 4:18 pm

    Kevinf (#46): maybe your YW thought it up independently, but there’s at least one i-kissed-a-frog parody already on youtube.

    In general, like all pop songs that get parodied, an ‘I Kissed a _____, and I liked it” meme has hit Youtube. Girl-girl, girl-boy, boy-boy, boy-girl, pig, frog, cat, dog. (Oh my. I just had a Dr. Seuss green eggs and ham flashback. “Would you, could you…?” ) And the song seems ripe for a Weird Al Yankovic parody,

    By the way, the video images are even more overtly sexual than the lyrics.

    Starfoxy: re: friendships. You bring up an interesting point that’s related to a new dimension of inoculating teens against early sexual experimentation. Parents warn their 16 year old daughters about adverse possibilities when 18 year old boys show an interest in them. In 11 to 15 years, a new set of teens will reach the age of sexual experimentation, but those future teens will likely have spent their entire life in a society (or at least a public school) free of homophobia, where homosexuality is normalized and presented as normal in the curriculum. Teens who want to explore homosexual relationships (not necessarily because they were born gay, maybe they’re just exploring/experimenting like an adventurous type of teen) may look towards those who are easily led by stronger personalities, or by slightly older teens. The slightly younger teen or the teen who is more easily led by “alpha” peers, won’t have society’s censure or taboo against homosexuality as a barrier to homosexual experimentation like most teens today do.

    Someone told me “Don’t worry, teen boys are very homophobic.” Today most are. But what about in 15 years after SSM becomes an institution with government approval, and the school curriculum texts will have been rewritten?

    Will the “don’t have sex before marriage” teaching of parents/church be sufficient against the newly permissible or newly socially acceptable options? Remember, a former president declared that oral/genital contact was not sex, and what effect did that have on the teens who like to explore and push limits? “The line” was moved further down the road for a new generation.

    And are there increased or “worse” consequences (spiritual, emotional, psychological) for teens for homosexual sex experimentation beyond the consequences of heterosexual sex experimentation ? And if so, do those increased consequences, and increased opportunities, justify additional barriers, strengthening, or inoculation?

    A society completely without homophobia or any form of taboo about homosexuality will be great for those who are born gay, who didn’t consciously choose it and believe they can’t change. But we are taking a great gamble in thinking it will have no adverse effects on a much larger portion of teens (it was mentioned at 50% by someone in a previous comment) who commonly go through a period of confusion or discovery as they emotionally mature.

    It may well be that many gays are born that way. But what if that’s not the only cause or motivation for homosexuality? 11 years from now, the kindergarteners of today will be dating and will have peer and social pressure to be sexually active. In California, their entire school career will have taught them that “gay is okay.” Hello? Can people not extrapolate as to what adventurous-type or easily-led type teens will be doing? Not only will a 16-year old Susie need help saying “NO” to a 16-year old Sam, she just might need help saying “NO” to 16-year old Sandra, who’s been her best-friend-forever, and who she wants to keep as friend, and saying “NO” might lose her as a friend. And ditto for males.

    Will “don’t have sex until you’re married” be sufficient? Because among the un-churched general population of the US, that horse has already fled the barn. And a new sexual “option” will have (or has) appeared on the shelf from which one may choose.

    KLS:
    http://www.millennialstar.org/2008/10/23/how-could-that-hurt-my-family/
    http://www.mormonmentality.org/2008/10/14/how-same-sex-marriage-affects-traditional-marriage.htm

    And there are other threads that more specifically address Prop 8.

    Matthew (#68): frission = frisson. Congrats, you sent me to the dictionary.

  77. Mark B. on October 30, 2008 at 4:20 pm

    reisters, don’t get me wrong: I think emotional intimacy (attraction) between young women is very healthy, as long as they’re not misled by twisted cultural trends.

    And, how are we voting on Prop 8?

  78. Kent G. Budge on October 30, 2008 at 4:29 pm

    Dang. Every time I start to get comfortable with the idea that same sex attraction is an inborn characteristic that is the special cross some people have to bear, something comes along that suggests that, after all, the notion that same sex attraction is inborn and immutable is one of the Big Lies of our generation.

    Where’s that big bottle of ibuprofen when I need it?

  79. Kathryn Lynard Soper on October 30, 2008 at 4:40 pm

    Mark B., there’s nothing immoral about emotionally intimate relationships between young women. Sexually intimate relationships are another matter.

    Kent, from what I’ve read, SSA is inevitable for some, but merely optional for most. Not a tidy issue, that’s for sure.

  80. Mark B. on October 30, 2008 at 8:58 pm

    I don’t know how you might have inferred that I believe that there is anything immoral about intimate emotional relationships between young women. I don’t.

    But I too fear the effects of twisted cultural (and legal) trends.

  81. jks on October 30, 2008 at 10:27 pm

    “I’ve read you enough to know you could have made your point just as well without resorting to quoting the lyrics you claim you find objectionable, but you chose not to. I don’t understand why you made that choice. I thought you might want to explain. I guess not. It is, however, a legitimate question to ask an author. ”

    Matthew,
    As a parent, I appreciate reading the words and content of the song. I guess I could see that she could have just explained content. However, what I really hate is when someone gets up in order to explain something (or discuss something) and I don’t know what they are talking about. Like when last week at church a stake representative tried to explain briefly and carefully using anonymity so rumors would be set straight about “people picketing” and I had no idea what he was talking about.

  82. jks on October 30, 2008 at 10:44 pm

    “there’s nothing immoral about emotionally intimate relationships between young women. Sexually intimate relationships are another matter. ”

    KLS, there can be dangerous emotionally intimate relationships that aren’t “sexual.” I’m not worried just about my children kissing or handholding (or more) with a same gender friend. I’m also concerned about them “liking” a same gender friend, or a same gender friend “liking them” and wanting to be boyfriend or girlfriend (or wanting them to be their boyfriend or girlfriend eventually).
    Much of this stuff that we have to talk to our kids about requires so much more maturity than they have to truly understand. I talk to them about dangerous situations, but they don’t really get it, you know? You can quiz them on which things to tell an adult and which things that they don’t need to “tattle” about and they surprise you with what they don’t understand the real consequences of. I try to give them as much as they can possibly handle and understand, and then a bit more, and then I have to live with the fact that they don’t understand it all, and they will misunderstand some of it, and they will forget a lot of it.
    Ever taught math? Or reading to a child? You can only teach what they are ready to learn. You can create opportunities for them to learn, but sometimes they just aren’t ready developmentally to learn something.

  83. mike on October 31, 2008 at 12:26 pm

    Reply to # 78 Ibuprofen? You need a bucket of cold water.

    One theory does not excluse the other.

    Some people may be hard-wired for homosexuality and others arrive there through their experiences which they selected, with or without a clear understanding of the consequences. A Psychologist friend of mine explained that he thinks of sexual orientation as a continuum between two extreme poles with 5 categories of people in between (and the usual borderline cases). I grew up in the 1960-70′s in a Utah ward with over 250 youth; many with a variety of severe moral problems and I spent many years in the military. This seems to fit what I observed. See chart below.

    At the 2 poles of the continuum are people hard wired for homosexuality (5) or heterosexuality (1). It is extremely unlikely that any experience is going to move them into the opposite category. These are the homosexuals who fail every effort at what is called repentance or rehabilitation or treatment. These are the heterosexuals that have always found the very thought of actually engaging in any homosexual act as entirely revolting.

    In the middle are people who are naturally bisexual (3) and which way they go depends almost entirely upon their experiences. The other two groups are those between bisexual and either homosexual (4) or heterosexual (2). They have moderately strong tendencies in one direction but can be moved in the other direction by their experiences. Among them are the thousands of homosexuals who have reformed. Many evangelical churches have specific ministries with dozens of successfully reoriented homosexuals. The most vocal homosexual voices deny they even exist. I suspect they have few success stories that started out at the extreme pole (5) and most were either bisexual (3) or leaning towards heterosexuality (4).There is also a difference between what you think/feel and what you actually do, although they strongly influence one another.

    Chart:

    Category 1: Hard wired heterosexual

    Category 2: Soft heterosexual

    Category 3: Bisexual

    Category 4: Soft Homosexual

    Category 5: Hard wired heterosexual

    What is not known is what percent of people are born into these various categories and how many move from one into the next and at what age. It might be different for each sex. Men might have a preponderance of people in category 1 and 5 at the poles. Women might have higher portions in the middle category. I don’t know. It might be different in other cultures and civilizations. The time at which young adults are made aware of the sexual world, largely hidden in childhood, might result in more or fewer people landing into the middle categories. We know that today girls reach menarchy around age 12 on average and two centuries ago it was round age 16 on average. We don’t exactly know why but it seems that our genes haven’t changed that much but our culture certainly has. If culture/environment can move the age when a woman is first physically able to have children down by 25%, it might be able to influence sexual orientation. The point is that currently we lack very much reliable scientific data, although it is obvious that there are far more heterosexuals than homosexuals.

    This brings up the issue of recruitment. If it was as simple as two extreme poles based entirely on genetics then recruitment would be unlikely. But if large numbers of people are somewhere in the middle categories (2,3,4) then they are vulnerable to recruitment. If large numbers of teenage girls in our current society are not at the pole heterosexually (in or near category 2) for whatever reason, then these songs and actions described in this discussion are a big problem.

    Finally, we have to ask if homosexuality is a desirable state to be sought after by some people or is it in the best interests of society to limit the number of homosexuals? Maybe they are more creative or have special gifts. It seems that AIDS remains more of a male homosexual than a heterosexual problem even 30 years into the epidemic and it is turning from a quick death sentence into a chronic and somewhat manageable but miserable disease at great expense. Will there arise other natural plagues that target homosexuals preferentially? Of course traditional readings of the Bible and especially Mormon scriptures/prophetic theology clearly describe homosexuality as wrong.

    The possibility of the eternal or inherent goodness of homosexuality raises a disturbing possibility: that God or Jesus or the Holy Ghost might be homosexual or at least have the potential to be homosexual. Such doctrine flys directly in the face of other aspects of Mormon cosmology, especially the belief of eternal offspring as the result of a union of a celestial man and woman. It nullifies the doctrine of a necessary Mother in Heaven. All those in the middle three categories charted above, according to Mormon doctrine, need to move to the heterosexual pole and we must love and tolerate but not encourage the few who do not appear to have the ability to do so.

    *****

    For all of those who are wringing their hands about the future of society and especially the parents of young children, I would say two things. First focus on your children. Fortify them as best as you can with courage and a positive attitude. Parents are still a stronger influence on children than the rest of society at almost every age and even in the worst storms of the teenage years parental influence is not insignificant. Especially if we parents have strong ties to a network of other parents of our teenagers’ friends who can help fill in the gaps where we might stumble as parents. We won’t win every battle, there will be tragic causalties. But God’s correct way will ultimately prevail in most cases.

    Second, as far as worrying about everybody else’s kids, almost all of the various forms of pernicious wickedness have a way of eventually breeding themselves out of existence as they get worse. Biologically this is good news since it is a strong selective force in favor of those who avoid them. No exclusive homosexuals have children without expensive medical intervention and only a few adopt/raise children. (It will be fascinating if the children raised by homosexual couples have higher {or possibly lower} tendencies in that direction). The Shakers who were once more numerous than Mormons had this problem; they didn’t believe in any sex and hence didn’t raise another generation.

    The pornographers are generally impotent and don’t know how to deal with a real woman and often fail to establish the kind of relationship that might lead to reproduction. As this problem worsens fewer women will marry them. It is questionable in the current environment whether stupidity in all of its various manifestations enhances or inhibits successful reproduction in the long run. The stupid might produce more children in the first generation but these children of stupidity might be unable to compete and their offspring will largely fail in the following generations.The sins of the fathers are visited upon the heads of their children unto the third and fourth generation. The future is owned by the righteous, by those who raise up strong and capable children and rely on the Lord.

  84. Connie on October 31, 2008 at 3:37 pm

    I am one of your \”lurkers\” who likes to read and comment every now and again. I can\’t say that throughout this thread I have been entirely suprised, but I am concerned about a couple of comments. Let me first preface this by saying I am a lesbian and a non-mormon. I live in Utah.

    First: I have NEVER \”recruited\” someone to become gay. I have NEVER known anyone who has \”recruited\” someone to become gay. That trend that was supposidly on the rise is a falsehood. Why would we want to be involved intimately with a straight person who will, in the end, still be straight? You can\’t change someone\’s orientation, one way or another. Any older person who engages with an underage person in sexual intercourse is a criminal and should be locked up, gay or straight.

    Second: The notion that a person who tried homosexuality is forcing themselves to feel gay when they are really not… I want you to really think about this. Put yourself in this siutation. Your best most beautiful same-gender friend comes to you, tells you s/he is gay and wants to have a sexual relationship with you. Based on what you know about yourself you will A: reject the offer and keep the friend, B: reject the offer and reject the friend, or C: Accept the offer.

    Are you, as a straight person, really going to just hop in bed with someone if you\’re not attracted? If so, that to me signals that you aren\’t strong enough in either your convictions or your orientation. So, how is that my problem as a gay person? Answer: It\’s not.

    I can tell you that I had same-gender attractions since I was a child. I didn\’t understand them, so I didn\’t entertain them. I dated men until I was 21, and I never felt that contentment, that peace, that you find with a person you were meant to be with, e/ven with the man I was engaged to.

    On Grey\’s Anatomy, which was mentioned earlier, one of the characters says \”It\’s like getting glasses. You think you see fine, and then you look through the glasses and those green blobs out the window aren\’t green blobs anymore. The green blobs are leaves on trees.\” It\’s really like that for those with same-gender attractions that didn\’t understand why they were feeling what they were feeling. If you don\’t have that attraction, you will never understand how it feels.

    We are taught from birth about one man one woman. This confusing feeling doesn\’t fit anywhere in our developing brains. A lot of gay people don\’t know how to process it and marry and live in very very unfilfilling marriages because that\’s what they are told they have to do. When they finally meet a same-gender person and fireworks erupt, and they *get* what it is they have been supressing, it\’s just like seeing leaves on the trees for the first time.

    What I can say for certian about myself is that I have never felt about a man the way I feel about my partner. It\’s not about sex, because, to be honest, I suspect we are intimate about the same as any other married couple. It\’s about completion. It\’s about, for lack of a better term, finding the Yin to your Yang. We don\’t always agree, but we are of the same mind. We have different feelings, but are of the same heart. We raised an amazing (and straight) daughter together. We are committed to one another until the breath leaves our bodies and we meet together on the other side. I believe God blesses my Holy Union each and every day. We are monogamous and we honor one another with our decisions in life.

    That, my friends, is no different than the beauty of marriage.

    I kissed a girl, I liked it, and I married her.

  85. MikeInWeHo on October 31, 2008 at 7:49 pm

    “almost all of the various forms of pernicious wickedness have a way of eventually breeding themselves out of existence as they get worse. Biologically this is good news since it is a strong selective force in favor of those who avoid them. No exclusive homosexuals have children…..”

    That’s a rather offensive statement, but more to the point: Homosexuals are not produced by other homosexuals. They appear to be produced by large Mormon families. So alas, don’t get too enthusiastic about homosexuality being swept away by evolution.

  86. Bookslinger on November 1, 2008 at 11:33 am

    Connie, I’m glad that in your experience you have not observed lesbians recruit or groom younger women into lesbianism. However, I have known young men, both as a home-teacher and as a missonary, who were targeted by older men who did want to recruit. In the mission field, one of our investigators, who had a troubled home life due to a bad relationship with his father, was befriended and mentored by a man for years before actually being sexually seduced by him. (In fact, failure to properly bond or form a relationship with one’s father is one of the things psychologists used to say, and many still do, that can lead to homosexuality in men. Around 1972 the leadership of the APA changed their stance on that, but most members at the time did not go along with that political decision.)

    One of my inner-city clients, told me about how he was often hit on by older bisexual men. Male bisexuality seems to be not un-common among inner-city African-Americans. Several of the gritty-type TV shows (Law and Order, for instance) have dealt with “on the down-low”. I would have chalked the premise of that TV episode up to pure fiction if my client hadn’t previously told me about it.

    Another point of evidence, I heard a 20-something gay man’s discovery story. He described a mentor help him discover who he was, but it sounded more like he was steered or groomed for years, and seduced. He would have fit in at #3 or #4 on Mike’s scale (in comment #83.) And I do grant the likelihood that some homosexuals at the end of the scale are born hard-wired for same-sex attraction.

    I’d say that some gay men seek after #3 and #4 and “help them along” towards #5. And with the social barriers removed, then more #2 type people are going to go exploring, and be available to be “helped along.”

    A close friend of mine who works with several gay men heard their stories. Several were sexually abused as children by adult men. And according to her, their main reasoning for believing they were gay was that they physically enjoyed the sex. Well of course a serial child abuser (heterosexual or homosexual) is going to want to make the abuse as physically arousing for the child in order to gain their cooperation and silence. Child abusers are generally not like violent rapists. Intense shame for having been aroused or physically enjoying the experience is what keeps many kids silent, and messes them up in adult life. And our society’s narrative seems to be “if you liked it, you must be gay.”

    Societal acceptance of homosexuality won’t turn an entire future generation homosexual. But it won’t surprise me if homosexual experimentation skyrockets, and the incidence of people claiming to be homosexual at least doubles or triples.

    The claim “gays don’t recruit” flies in the face of my observations going back years. Not all do. But it happens. And social acceptance of homosexuality, which is what SSM is, is going to make it all the easier to “make” homosexuals.

  87. Steve on November 1, 2008 at 5:17 pm

    Pop music has been encouraging deviant behavior since long before Elvis and the Beatles. I’d be more concerned about whether my kids are persuadable by media messages than the actual messages they’re getting. Knowing whether this is going to be a problem depends a lot on how well you know your kid and what they’re susceptible to. The previous poster who mentioned metal bands raised an interesting point. I grew up listening to Slayer, Napalm Death and Cannibal Corpse, and I didn’t run through my neighborhood looking for virgins to sacrifice. If anything, there’s no way the lyrics in “I Kissed a Girl” are any worse than “Altar of Sacrifice” or “Necrophiliac”. It was (and is) just music. If I can engender that same attitude in my kids, I’m not worried about what they listen to.

  88. Connie on November 3, 2008 at 1:19 pm

    I take exception with the statement “…social acceptance of homosexuality, which is what SSM is, is going to make it all the easier to “make” homosexuals”

    I wasn’t made. I was born. Your cannot change a straight person into a gay person if it is not within their orientation. I was not “recruited.” In fact, to say that gays recruit children would also be the same for heterosexuals who were abused by opposite gender adults. If an underage girl is abused by a straight male, then it makes is more acceptable because it’s one man and one woman? Of course not! Well, what if she “liked” it?

    Do you see how ludicrous it sounds?

    There are predators in both the gay and straight community. The friends I have had here in Utah have been more likely abused by a straight opposite gender predator than a gay one, regardless of the orientation the child shows in later life.

    The statements that “gays recruit” is inflammatory and, frankly, offensive to me as a gay person, the same way that “all men sexually abuse their daughters” may be offensive to you. Blanket statements do nothing to help the children of abuse in thie country.

    With all of that aside…

    Homosexual experimentation is much more prevalent in society than you think. It’s simply kept behind closed doors. I can think of two of my female childhood friends, both LDS, who were experimenting with kissing with one another at 10 years of age in the 70′s. Both of them are straight, temple recommended members now.

    Experimentation does not make you gay. Music lyrics do not make you gay. Your orientation makes you gay.

  89. Connie on November 3, 2008 at 1:25 pm

    One other point I would like to make, bookslinger, is that when I say I have never known anyone who “recruited” someone to become gay, I was including males. None of my friends have heard of this so-called “recruitment”. I am in my mid thirties and in the 15 years of being active in the gay community, this idea of recruitment is laughable because we understand that you cannot turn someone gay.

    If you count “recruitment” as being there for someone to talk about life in the gay community, or picking them up from their parents houses when they are kicked out for coing out of the closet, or going to the hospital when a friend is assaulted and presumed gay because of the company he kept… well, then maybe you have us there. We tend to try and help when we see anyone in need.

  90. Kathryn Lynard Soper on November 3, 2008 at 1:41 pm

    Connie, I appreciate you sharing your perspective.

    Experimentation does not make you gay. Music lyrics do not make you gay. Your orientation makes you gay.

    Are you saying that music lyrics cannot possibly promote experimentation, and that experimentation cannot possibly influence sexual preference?

    You speak of orientation as a static, fixed-in-stone-at-birth phenomenon, but the studies I’ve read blatanly contradict that position.

    And, I’m curious: do you find anything offensive in song lyrics which encourage homosexual behavior for the gratification of heterosexuals?

  91. gst on November 3, 2008 at 1:50 pm

    To those that say that music can’t make you gay: An overload of British synth-pop in the 80s came pretty damned close to gaying me up good.

  92. Steve Evans on November 3, 2008 at 1:52 pm

    Oh l’amour…. what’s a boy in love supposed to do!

  93. gst on November 3, 2008 at 1:53 pm

    Precisely.

  94. Kathryn Lynard Soper on November 3, 2008 at 2:35 pm

    You must whip it, handsome devil.

  95. Roseann on November 11, 2008 at 9:47 pm

    #14 asked:

    \”Does anyone know the quote by a GA, at least 12 or more years old and it basically talks about society normalising the abnormal to make it the new norm\”

    John Wesley (English Evangelist, founder of Methodism. 1703-1791) said:

    “What one generation tolerates, the next generation will embrace.”

WELCOME

Times and Seasons is a place to gather and discuss ideas of interest to faithful Latter-day Saints.