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since June 19, 2001


Dale's Web Pages



By Dale O'Leary


Many school districts across the country already have created or are contemplating creating Gay/Straight Student Alliances or support groups for Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgendered Students. Other school districts refer troubled students to off-campus counseling centers and pro-homosexual groups. In North Carolina the Lambda Youth Network promotes itself as "a statewide leadership and communication network led by self-identified lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgendered, questioning and allied young people ages 13 to 23."

Some of these students have experienced strong same-sex attraction, others have been engaging in same-sex behavior. Some may be merely experimenting. Some have been teased as sissies or labeled by classmates as fags or lesbians because of atypical interests or behavior. "Transgendered" adolescents are suffering from severe sexual identity problems and need professional help. Often the parents are not informed of the counseling their child is receiving.

These students are at risk. Being sexually active in early adolescence exposes the student to psychological stresses and sexually transmitted diseases. Many of these students are already abusing drugs and alcohol and have poor relationships with one or both parents. They often suffer from depression, anger, self-destructive behavior, and suicidal impulses. They feel alienated from classmates and often have experienced teasing or harassment.

The homosexual community insists that they have the right to design and control the programs which serve these at-risk adolescents. Torie Osborn, a long time homosexual rights activist, wants "to see counseling centers for gay, lesbian and bisexual students who are struggling with their sexual identity in every school system in America" because "school is where our gay kids are."1

However, there are a number of reasons why these at-risk adolescents should not be turned over to homosexual rights activists:

  1. At-risk adolescents are not the homosexual rights activists' "gay kids." They have parents -- parents who, in spite of difficulties, love them, support them, and want the best for them. 

  2. Homosexual rights activists use these at-risk adolescents to forward their political agenda. The students are encouraged to "come out," to march in gay pride parades, to testify before school board meetings and state legislatures, and to tell their stories to the press. 

  3. The homosexual community is not a safe place for adolescents. In fact, it is not a safe place for adults. Alcohol abuse and illegal drug use are the norm. Sexually transmitted diseases and AIDS are epidemic. Violence and extreme sexual behaviors are common. Sexual relations between adults and adolescents are not discouraged. Prostitution, particularly adolescent prostitution, is tolerated. 

  4. There is no evidence that participation in these groups will protect the students from the risks involved in the active homosexual lifestyle.

  5. The homosexual advisors to these groups use their position to satisfy personal needs for affirmation and parenthood. 

  6. Homosexual student support groups create a cult-like atmosphere which encourages vulnerable young people to break ties with family.

The book Children of Horizons: How gay and lesbian teens are leading a new way out of the closet by Gilbert Herdt and Andrew Boxer promotes support groups for at-risk adolescents and explains in some detail how a typical group operates.2 While the group studied was not on school property, the experience of this group, which has been in existence since 1983, provides insights into what to expect from on campus groups.
The authors admit that the group is not quite what it claims to be:

It is true that the Horizons agency regards the youth group as a self-help organization, wherein teaching does not occur (with the exception of AIDS education). But this is an official cultural view, an ideology imposed upon them by a harsh and oppressive surrounding society. The advisors do, in fact, teach.

And what is that the advisors teach these vulnerable adolescents? According to the authors: "the adults have an assignment from the gay and lesbian community, however implicit it remains: to prepare the youth for entry into gay and lesbian culture." The authors explain why this is necessary:

For gays and lesbians to succeed in constructing a culture in competition with other groups in the United States has required three fundamental steps: (1) the creation of institutions such as Horizons through which to socialize and affirm values and lifeways; (2) the integration of the older homosexual generation into the new gay and lesbian cohort, or, at the least, the provision of cultural means to deal with the alienation of the older generation from the young; and (3) the training of the young, who will transmit social values and cultural roles and beliefs -- the utopian ideology -- across time and space into the future.

While the homosexual activists have insisted they are a legitimate minority group, they resemble a religious or ideological cult. They seek to separate the students from their family, religious affiliation and culture. They use the same methods used by cults - "We are the only ones who love you. Your parents don't understand. We are your only salvation." They claim to be helping the students "find themselves," while manipulating the process toward a predetermined outcome..

The authors admit that one of the goals of the group is to guide the students through the coming out process which is viewed as a right of passage from their biological family's culture into the homosexual culture. They envision the final step in this process as participation in a gay rights parade where the students publicly acknowledge their homosexuality and are accepted into the homosexual community. According to the authors:

To be a full person in gay and lesbian culture is to have passed through each of these successive ritual passages that culminates in marching in the parade. That is their jumping-off point into society, following which the youth apply what the youth group experience has taught them.

The authors recognize the drastic nature of the change they are pressing upon the students:

In the minds of some youth, giving up heterosexual roles and institutions is more than a 'sexual' matter; it is a loss of cultural identity, a break with historical tradition. The Asian who finds that he will not be able to carry on the family and clan tradition, the black who may no longer attend the neighborhood church, the Italian-American who is rejected by his parents and can no longer attend extended family functions -- these are soul-wrenching losses of such an immense magnitude that they signify the loss of a whole way of life. To lose all of this in order to gain the public expression of sexual desires may seem like a bad trade-off. Some adults can handle the anxiety created by this declaration, but for many youth it is too much to bear.

The homosexual community has promoted the myth that homosexual orientation is permanently fixed and unchangeable and that they are merely making the inevitable "coming out" easier by speeding up the process. But there is ample evidence that many young people experiment with same-sex behavior in adolescence and then go on to be fully heterosexual in later life. Furthermore, the ex-gay movement demonstrates that even those who have been self-identified as homosexual for a number of years can, through participation in support groups or with counseling become free of homosexual compulsions, marry and have children. Forcing confused at-risk adolescents through the "coming out" process, encouraging them to make a public declaration of their homosexuality makes it more difficult for them to seek help or to decide that the same-sex behavior was just a phase.

Once the at-risk adolescents have broken ties with their families and community, the homosexual community becomes their only refuge. Just as with a cult, the person may become frightened of leaving everything that is familiar.

The advisors believe that forcing the "coming out" process is good for the youth because it is "what they would have liked others to have done for them." The advisors see themselves as parents, role models, moral figures of authority and affection, and derive satisfaction from these roles. According to the authors:

. . .many of advisors use their role as an implicit means to continue to develop their own self-image as gay or lesbian; that is, to continue to come out.

To be a culturally assigned "role model" in the community of gays and lesbians is a privilege and an honor.

To be an object of admiration and idealization and to allow themselves to be supportive in this way requires an adult strength and the ability to derive satisfaction from the subjective experience of "parenting" the youth.

They go so far as to believe that they have a superior right to guide these at-risk adolescents, comparing themselves to hijras, transvestite male prostitutes in India:

The Indian hijras lay a ceremonial claim of kinship to any child who desires to belong among them; likewise with adults and teenagers, the gay and lesbian culture of Horizons claims for its own all the children similarly born who reveal the mark of a different nature: their desire for the same sex and gay selfhood.


While the foundation of the group is supposedly tolerance and diversity, the leaders recognize the danger of really tolerating the behavior common within the homosexual community:

. . . some advisors at Horizons are hard pressed to handle variations among the youth in sexual risk-taking, especially among the small number of kids involved in what the adults consider "marginal" practices, such as sadomasochism. How does one instill a value of accepting "diversity" among gay and lesbian teens while teaching that sexual practices associated with such "marginal lifestyles" are dangerous?

How indeed! The leaders try to protect the students, but there is ample evidence, even within the text, that they are not successful. The Horizons group was small, but the pathology was apparent. One member committed suicide, another died from AIDS. One member was a homosexual prostitute. Several were going to homosexual bars illegally. Several were into sadomasochistic behaviors. Sex was, according to the youth, "very open" and one of the members called sex as the "drug of the group." When the group participated in the homosexual rights parade, as they passed gay men's bars "some older men laughed and shouted 'Chicken' and 'Fresh meat.'"

Those promoting support groups for "gay youth" in high school and even earlier have argued that these are necessary to save lives since once identified students could receive support and AIDS prevention education. However, adolescents who have been encouraged to reject the wisdom of their parents and society appear equally able to reject the safe-sex education and other warnings given by the advisors. Furthermore, there is now substantial evidence that men who have sex with men continue to engage in risky sexual behavior even though they are fully aware of the consequences.

A 1994 report by Rotheram-Borus et al., on risk behavior among gay and bisexual male adolescents in New York City queried young men who were "recruited from counseling, drop-in, or school programs at Hetrick-Martin Institute (HMI), a gay identified New York City community based agency providing recreational and social services."3The report showed that these young men are at high risk and no evidence was presented that participation in the program was protecting them:

Many youths engaged in anal sex with males (80%), and 22% bartered sex for money or drugs...Condoms with male partners were never or inconsistently used by 52% of youths.

89% of youths were sexually active, 87% with males and 49% with females...Sexually active youths reported a median of 7.0 lifetime male partners but a mean of 70.1 such partners.

When compared to other young men, those in this program were at a very high risk for drug abuse and sexually transmitted diseases including AIDS:

For example, the lifetime prevalence rates for our youths were 50% higher for alcohol (76% vs. 49%), 2 times higher for marijuana (42% vs. 21%), and 13 times higher for cocaine/crack (25% vs. 2%) Similarly, the frequency of using alcohol, marijuana, or cocaine/crack at least once a week was approximately 3 to 15 times higher for this study's male youths during the past three months compared to male youths in the national survey during the past year.

The frequency of alcohol, marijuana or cocaine/crack use was related to lifetime number of sexual partners, as well as ever engaging in oral or anal sex. In addition, more frequent use of cocaine crack was significantly related to youths' decreased use of condoms.

Bartering sex for money or drugs appeared dramatically to increase sexual risk acts, as did alcohol and drug use.

A longitudinal study of 68 gay men who had attended AIDS prevention sessions and were followed for 16 months suggests that encourage homosexual boys to come out early might have actually put them at greater risk. The researchers found that:

. . .risk behavior relapse is strongly predicted by earlier history of frequent high-risk practices, especially unprotected receptive anal intercourse, high levels of sexual activity with multiple partners, high subjective gratification derived from past risky sexual practices, sexual activity when intoxicated, and younger age.4

The researchers also found that the more "out" a homosexual was the more likely he was to take risks:

. . .the significant influence of self-rated degree of homosexual "outness" and lower levels of depression may reflect increased sexual contact with other gay men.

Another study concluded that ". . . those who began sexual activity with men at a younger age were more likely to engage in unprotected anal sex."5

Anyone with even a modicum of experience with adolescent boys knows that they are prone to risk-taking, pleasure seeking, alcohol abuse, refusing to follow good advice, and, in general, impulsive behavior. Educational programs, even when accompanied by social sanctions and threats of punishment, are rarely effective at completely curtailing these behaviors. Putting boys who have homosexual inclinations into an environment such as the homosexual community, where giving in to impulses is the rule rather than the exception and where the adults show little ability at impulse control, could only be expected to have negative health consequences. It is not surprising therefore that "outness" is related to risk-taking and to an increased risk of HIV infection.

It is also not surprising that in 1994 epidemiologists estimated that 30% of all 20-year-old homosexually active men would be HIV positive or dead of AIDS by the time they were 30.6 Nor should it have been surprising that after more than a decade of safe-sex education preliminary results from a 1996 survey of young homosexual and bisexual men showed that 7% were infected with HIV. The results were reported by Dr. Linda Valleroy of the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention at a meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. Valleroy. In presenting the findings from a survey of 1,781 men 15 to 22 from Florida and California, Valleroy stated:

HIV prevalence is very high among young men who have sex with men, compared with the general population of youths in the US. . . The prevalence of unprotected anal sex is alarming, given that these young men grew up in an era of HIV awareness.7

The study found that 38% of those surveyed reported unprotected anal sex within the previous six months. Among those aged 20 to 22 the rate of infection was 9%. This information is in keeping with the predictions about the course of the AIDS epidemic. After an epidemic reaches saturation it burns itself out unless a new group of vulnerable individuals enters the at-risk population. In his book Sexual Ecology, Gabriel Rotello, points out that an epidemic among homosexuals differs from one among heterosexuals in that:

Each new homosexual generation is replenished by heterosexuals, whose production of gay sons is entirely unrelated to the dynamics of the epidemic. AIDS can therefore keep mowing down gay men, and rather than dying out, phalanx after phalanx will emerge from the trenches, ready to be mowed down anew. . . the epidemic could literally go on forever. . . 8

Because AIDS education has been directed at providing young people with information about various forms of sexual behavior which spread the disease, it may create curiosity and encourage experimentation among young men. AIDS education has also been a vehicle for promoting positive attitudes toward homosexuality, and it is possible that the number of young men experimenting with homosexuality will increase. Early "coming out" probably includes engaging in sexual activity at an earlier age, more often, and possibly with infected adults. In some urban areas the HIV infection rate is as high as 50% among men who have sex with men.

Young women are also at risk because there is a high degree of bisexuality among these young men. Boys who have visited the urban centers and engaged in unsafe homosexual sexual practices may return to their high schools and engage in sexual practices with other boys who in turn may infect the girls. According to one study, the finding that "bisexual activity was associated with a younger age group suggests that this activity may be part of a sexual exploration prior to 'coming out.'"9 Girls in homosexual support groups may experiment with boys in the same group. Lesbians are more likely to be HIV positive than heterosexual women not because HIV is transmitted by lesbian sexual activity, but because lesbians are more likely to have had sexual relations with HIV positive men or use IV drugs.

Gary Remafedi's study of 239 gay and bisexual male adolescents found that 9% of the sexual encounters during the previous year were with female partners. Of the 239 subjects, 63% were considered at extreme risk for prior exposure to HIV, 25% at moderate risk. Only 40% had ever undergone HIV testing, but 4% knew they were already positive. In addition, 23% of the subjects reported being infected with other venereal diseases.10

And HIV disease is not the only health threat. Venereal warts caused by human papilloma virus and various types of Hepatitis are epidemic among men who have sex with men. Hepatitis can lead to cirrhosis of the liver and liver cancer. Human papilloma virus causes genital, anal and cervical cancer.

An article appearing in the July 8, 1997 edition of the homosexual magazine The Advocate by David Heitz entitled "The Return of Our Bad Habits: Men Behaving Badly" documents the return of the wild lifestyle which caused the AIDS epidemic.11 According to Heitz "the party's everywhere -- in nightclubs and sex clubs from Los Angeles to Miami and in private homes from Chicago to Atlanta. And as on Fire Island in the '70s, sex and drugs are on the invite list."

The news that a combination drug treatment may stop the progress of has already led many young men to resume unprotected sexually activity. In addition, homosexual psychologist Larry Harmon, who practices in Miami, believes more and more gay men are dabbling in illegal substances, however: "My sense is that it has become normal for a gay man in his 20s to experiment with coke and pot and even crystal meth once in a while."

According to a report by Cathy Reback, "The Social Construction of a Gay Drug: Methamphetamine Use Among Gay and Bisexual Males in Los Angeles," crystal meth (a form of methamphetamine) has become the drug of choice among homosexual men who use it to intensify the sexual experience. Her study included males as young as 17.12

Other drugs common on the homosexual circuit include GHB (gamma-hydroxybutyrate), a sedative with unpredictable side effects, and Ecstasy which acts as a stimulant and a hallucinogen, giving users take an illusory sense of well-being and sensory distortion.

According to Heitz: "Among gay men, many experts agree, when it comes to taking drugs it's all about sex." Dave Rigg, substance abuse treatment coordinator at the Health Crisis Network in Miami, is reported as saying, "I think the comment we're hearing from people is, there's an increase in drug use and disinhibition when it comes down to sex -- unsafe sex."

AIDS education appears to be unable to prevent risk-taking. The Advocate article reports on a "high-ranking official in one of the country's largest AIDS service organizations" who engaged in unsafe sex while high on cocaine and "turned up positive."

Harmon links the self-destructive behavior to childhood rejection: "In the backs of our heads, we feel a lack of confidence [around men], so we . . . take a drug that's going to override that program."

Homosexual activists argue that their programs will foster self-esteem and protect the next generation of homosexual youth from self-destruction. But they offer no proof of success. All the evidence shows that the more "out" a homosexual adolescent is -- the more involved he is in the homosexual community -- the more likely he is to engage in unprotected sex and drug use. While homosexual activists like Larry Kramer, Gabriel Rotello, and the late Randy Shilts have promoted "responsible" homosexual behavior, others such as homosexual psychologist Dr. Walt Odets have reacted against any restrictions on gay sexual liberation. A new group called Sex Panic defends promiscuity and sex with anonymous partners as essential to the "gay culture." According to Michael Warner, a founder of Sex Panic, "It is an absurd fantasy to expect gay men to live without a sexual culture when we have almost nothing else that brings us together."13

With sexually transmitted diseases now epidemic, and news that the much touted new treatment for AIDS appears to work only for a short time, the risks are simply too great to allow homosexual activists to promise that sometime in the future their programs will work. These at-risk adolescents may not have another chance.  


If these at-risk adolescents are not turned over to the homosexual activists, what can be done for them?

School officials must also stop the teasing, harassment and labeling of at-risk adolescents and children by peers and faculty. These children need help. In many cases, same-sex attraction is preventable and treatable. The National Association for Research and Therapy of Homosexuality (NARTH) and various Ex-Gay ministries offer help to those interested in freedom from same-sex attraction and sexual activity. Positive psychological counseling focuses on healing the wounded masculine or feminine identity and resolving anger over childhood traumas. The result is that same-sex attraction diminishes and the compulsion to engage in same-sex behavior is lessened. In many cases homosexual attraction eventually disappears. It is not an easy or quick process, but given the dire consequences of not treating the underlying problems and the real possibility that with treatment these at-risk adolescents can lead a normal life, it is worth the effort.

It is also essential that school officials be prevented from turning at-risk students over to advisors or groups who will use them to further a political agenda, and put their lives at risk. The tragic story of a divorced mother in Connecticut illustrates how parents can lose their children to the homosexual movement. The mother discovered that her teenage son had been referred to a pro-homosexual group without her knowledge or consent. Unbeknownst to his mother the boy had sought help from the school counselor for suicidal feelings. The counselor did not inform his mother, but decided that his real problem was that he was homosexual. Besides his involvement with the pro-homosexual group, the young man continued to see the counselor for over a year during which time his mother had no idea that any of this was going on.

She accidentally discovered the situation when she found some homosexual literature in his room. A few weeks later, the homosexual group to which he had been referred held a press conference where the young man came "out" to the media. His mother read about it in the paper. She tried to encourage her son to go to counseling and to tried to preserve their relationship, but to no avail. His mother asked the high school for the records of the counseling her son had received. At first, the school refused claiming confidentiality. When she sent her attorney to the school, he was told that there were no records. The young man has since graduated from high school and is attending college. His expenses are being paid for through a scholarship supplied by a homosexual organization and he hasn't spoken to his mother in months.

Parents should be brought into the process immediately. They alone have the right to decide what is best for their children. They should be told the truth about the treatments which are available. Parents whose children have been turned over to homosexual activists without notification should consider initiating legal action against schools which disregarded the best interests of their children.

At-risk adolescents need to be protected from exploitation and the dangers of involvement in the homosexual community. Homosexual activists have no right to claim these children as their own.


  1. "The exiles are coming home", Boston Globe Oct. 6, 1996,
  2. Herdt, G, Boxer, A., Children of Horizons. Beacon Press: Boston, 1993
  3. Rotheram-Borus, M., Rosario, M., Meyer-Bahlburg, H., Koopman, C., Dopkins, S., Davies, M. (1994) Sexual and substance use acts of gay and bisexual male adolescents in New York City. Journal of Sex Research. 31, 1: 47 - 57.
  4. Kelly, J., St. Lawrence, J., Brasfield, T., "Predictors of Vulnerability to AIDS Risk Behavior Relapse." Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology 59,1:163-166.1991.
  5. Doll, L., et al, "Homosexual Men Who Engage in High-Risk Sexual Behavior." Sexually Transmitted Diseases 18,3:170-175. 1991.
  6. Goldman, E., "Psychological Factors Generate HIV Resurgence in Young Gay Men." Clinical Psychiatry News. Oct. 1994.
  7. "Seven percent of young homosexual men infected with HIV" AP, Feb.11,1996.
  8. Rotello, G. Sexual Ecology p.208.
  9. Myers, T., et al,. "The Talking Sex Project: Descriptions of the Study Population and Correlates of Sexual Practices at Baseline". Canadian Journal of Public Health. Jan./Feb.1992.
  10. Remafedi, G., "Predictors of unprotected intercourse among gay and bisexual youth: knowledge, beliefs, and behavior." Pediatrics. 94:163-168.1994.
  11. Heitz, D., "Men Behaving Badly: The Return of Bad Habits." The Advocate, July 8, 1997.
  12. Reback, Cathy. "The Social Construction of Gay Drug: Methamphetamine Use among Gay and Bisexual Males in Los Angeles"
  13. Stolberg, S., "Gay Culture Weighs Sense and Sexuality" New York Times. Nov. 23, 1997.

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