“Being gay is NOT NORMAL/it is ABNORMAL”
“Normal” is quite a difficult word to objectively deal with, but the generally accepted definition is:
‘typical’, ‘usual’, ‘commonplace’.
Being left-handed, which like homosexuality has also been the subject of prejudice and discrimination, has historically also been considered ‘abnormal’, with an estimated 12/13 % of the population having this ‘condition’. (see: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bias_against_left-handed_people for more information).
Homosexuality is also a minority way of being. Although there no very reliable statistics concerning the percentage of a given population that is gay, not least due to the amount of stigma involved, most serious studies nowadays carried out in industrialized countries indicate a figure between 3 - 5 %.
The issues that arise here are:-
1) Is it really so strange or negative to be different to the norm?
Would you want to live in a drab, rigid, monolithic world where everyone was the same? Where everyone listened to the same music, read the same books, played the same games and ate the same food, and naturally voted for the same political party? A highly valued aspect of a free society is, after all, the very liberty to be yourself, and not be forced to immitate those around you.
2) Is it really so unusual to be in the minority?
The implication when some people (especially the more virulently anti-gay brigade) start to talk about ‘normal’ or ‘abnormal’ behaviour is that:
Normal is the right, correct way to do things – that’s why the majority exists in the first place. If most people do it this way, well they just have to be right (as shown in Germany in 1933).
But many, many people are in a minority for some aspect of their life. In fact, there’s a very good chance that you are, in some way, abnormal yourself.
Here’s a list of wierdos (less than 15% of a population group) – check it out and see if you are abnormal or know anyone who is.
Sad minorities of less than 15%:-
A) Left-handed people – approx. 12/13 %
B) Green-eyed people - 2% (worldwide)
C) Red/ginger-haired people – 2% (worldwide, rising to max. 13% in Scotland and 10% in Ireland)
D) British people who go to church on Sunday – 7 %
E) Swedes who do not drink alcohol – 14%
F) US American college students who could find Afghanistan on a map following the 2001 US invasion of Afghanistan – 12 %
G) Italians who get divorced - 10 % (this is, on the other hand, much more “normal” in Belgium (44%), Australia (46%) or Sweden (54%))
H) Afghan women who can read and write – 12.6 %
I) Buddhists (worldwide) – 5.5 %
J) Jewish people (worldwide) – 0.2 %
K) Mormons (in the USA) - 2 %
L) Australians who are real* (indigenous) Australians – 2.5 %
M) US Americans who are real* (indigenous) Americans – 0.8 %
N) Canadians who are real* (indigenous) Canadians – 1.5 %
* - There will certainly be some people who object to the way we use the word ‘real’ here and say that while for some it’s arguably true, it’s nonetheless an irrelevant, superfluous adjective in this context. Equally, gays might object to the use of the word ‘normal’ and find it to be arguably true but nonetheless quite irrelevant and superfluous too. It’s a big difference in meaning occasioned by a small word of little importance.