'Kinsey' protests are the tip of the iceberg
I missed this NY Times article about the pressure that religious groups are putting on the government to stop funding scientific studies that address sexual matters, but it's interesting. The sheer amount of lying the fundies do is just amazing--someone really should get James Dobson to read a Bible one day so that he can get a grip on the fact that the 10 Commandments do not forbid sex but do forbid lying.
Decades after the sexual revolution, sex researchers in the United States still operate in a kind of scientific underground, fearing suppression or public censure. In a culture awash in sex talk and advice in magazines and movies and on daytime TV, the researchers present their findings in coded language, knowing that at any time they, like Dr. Kinsey, could be held up as a public threat.
Social scientists say that for all its diverse tastes and freedoms, the nation that invented Viagra and "Sex and the City" is still queasy about exploring sexual desire and arousal, even when this knowledge is central to protecting the public's health.
In July 2003, for instance, Congress threatened to shut down several highly regarded sex studies, including one of emotion and arousal, and another of massage parlor workers. And last summer health officials refused to finance a widely anticipated proposal backed by three large universities to support and train students interested in studying sexuality.
As a result of this continued hostility, researchers say they still know precious little about fundamental questions, including how sexual desire affects judgment, how young people develop a sexual identity, why so many people take sexual risks, how personality and mood affect sexual health and how the explosion of sexual material on the Internet and trysts arranged online affect behavior.
There are all sorts of dissembling reasons that the fundies cough up to be against this research, but I think it's fairly obvious that they are just afraid. They know in their heart of hearts that sexual diversity is natural and non-harmful, that your upbringing isn't what makes you gay, and that women have sexual urges as powerful as men's, and they know that if this is confirmed by science that their propanganda asserting a "biblical" worldview will seem even more ridiculous than it already does.
The hysteria of these "Christians" is causing long-term harm to people. Like this:
That is why almost any discussion of sexuality in minors has been politically radioactive, experts say. In a public condemnation that stunned many sex researchers, Congress in 1999 voted unanimously to denounce a research article in an arcane journal that concluded that some victims of childhood sexual abuse suffered little long-term emotional damage.
This is not an excuse to molest children, but has the potential to be helpful to many victims of childhood sex abuse who may feel like they need permission to be healthy adults. But the sex-phobic Christian right isn't even thinking about real human beings who deserve respect.