A Smear Debunked
It is now and always has been the allegation that gays are all potential pedophiles or threats to minors. This kind of smear was once attributed to other despised minorities, esepcially Jews, and their alleged threat to Christian children. Over the last week, because of the gross behavior of Mark Foley, the Christianist right has resurrected this canard as a way of arguing that gay men should have no role in public life, and certainly not in the Republican party. Here's a serious and scholarly refutation of the libel by Mark Pietrzyk, an expose on how scientific data has been abused by the Christianist right. Money quote:
[T]he very scientists that are cited in support of the contention that gays are more likely to be molesters explicitly reject the idea that homosexuals pose a disproportionate threat to children. These scientists note that pedophilia is a separate orientation from homosexuality and that the vast majority of molesters who target boys have either no interest in mature males or are heterosexual men who are attracted to the feminine characteristics of pre-pubescent males.
As for the 'slippery slope' argument, the biggest mistake many social conservatives make is to assume that the contemporary taboo against sexual relations with children is a longstanding part of the Judeo-Christian tradition, which is only now coming under assault by the left. In fact, the Judeo-Christian tradition and many other religious traditions tolerated and even affirmed pedophilic relationships for centuries. The contemporary taboo against such relationships developed only a little over one hundred years ago, as people became more enlightened about the potentially damaging aspects of sexual relations between persons of unequal maturity and power.