Ethics Updates


Sexual Orientation

Internet Resources on Sexual Orientation


Court Decisions

Online Surveys

Articles and Multimedia Relating to Sexual Orientation

  • "Gay Marriage: David Frum vs. Andrew Sullivan," Slate, April 4, 1997.
  • Gay Marriages. Talk of the Nation. December 4, 1996.
  • Andrew Sullivan. Talk of the Nation. September 5, 1995. Guest: Andrew Sullivan, Author of Virtually Normal [Knopf: 1995]
  • Chandler Burr, "The AIDS Exception: Privacy vs. Public Health," The Atlantic Monthly, June, 1997.
  • Same-Sex Marrianges. Talk of the Nation. April 9, 1996. Guests: Paula Ettelbrick, Legislative Counsel and Primary Lobbyist, Empire State Pride Agenda, Lawyer, Turkel, Forman and Zimmerman Law Firm, Adjunct Professor of Law, University of Michigan Law School, Former Public Policy Director, National Center for Lesbian Rights, Former Legal Director, Lambda Legal Defense and Education Fund, New York City, NY; William Eskridge Jr., Author of The Case For Same-Sex Marriage: From Sexual Liberty to Civilized Commitment (Free Press, 1996), Professor, Georgetown Law Center, Washington, D.C.
  • "Supreme Court Gay Rights Decision," Talk of the Nation. May 20, 1996. Guests: Jean Dubofsky, Lead Counsel in the legal challenge to Colorado's Amendment 2; Jeff Rosen, Legal Affairs Editor, The New Republic.
  • RAND (National Defense Research Institute), "Sexual Orientation and U.S. Policy: Options and Assessments." Classic study on the anticipated effects of lifting the ban on gays in the military.
    • S.E. Bromberg, "Homosexuality, Ethics, and Military Policy," This paper was written to challenge RAND’s view that a successful policy could be implemented allowing homosexuals to work openly in the military.

NPR's Talk of the Nation

Gay Rights: 30 Years After Stonewall Host: Ray Suarez  Guests:  Adam Nagourney, Co-author, Out for Good:The Struggle to Build a Gay Rights Movement in America (Simon & Schuster l999), Journalist, The New York Times Magazine; Lillian Faderman, Author, To Believe in Women: What Lesbians Have Done for America--A History(Houghton Mifflin l999), Teacher, English & Lesbian Studies at California State University at Fresno.  Description: Thirty years ago in a bar in Greenwich village, a group of gay men decided they'd had enough of police harassment, and a raid turned into a riot. Since then, the Stonewall Uprising has come to be considered the watershed event that got the gay rights movement going. Thirty years after Stonewall, gays have made tremendous strides in some areas, but social acceptance in the American mainstream still seems a long way away. Join Ray Suarez and guests for a look at the history of the gay rights movement in America.  June 29, 1999

Mainline Protestant Churches and Homosexuality Host:  Ray Suarez  Guests:  Keith Hartman
Author, Congregations In Conflict [Rutgers University Press, 1996]; Reverend Jimmy Creech
Pastor, First United Methodist Church, Omaha, Nebraska; Retired Bishop Kenneth Hicks, Little Rock, Arkansas.  Description:  Slavery...abortion...the ordination of women ... throughout history these have been some of the most divisive issues for mainline Protestant Churches. Today it's homosexuality that is causing a crisis in many congregations. Join Ray Suarez and guests for a look at how these democratically structured churches grapple with contentious issues and avoid breaking into factions.  March 30, 1998.

"Don't Ask, Don't Tell"   Host:  Ray Suarez  Guests: Dixon Osburn, Co-Executive Director and Co-Founder, Servicemembers Legal Defense Network; Alec Farr, Prosecutor, Rose Law Firm Representing Timothy R. McVeigh; Charles Moskos, Northwestern University Professor of Sociology, Author, All That We Can Be: Black Leadership and Racial Integration the Army Way; Martha Raddatz, NPR's Pentagon Correspondent.  Description:  There's renewed controversy over the policy of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" for gays in the military. Pressured by a pending lawsuit, the Pentagon agreed to delay discharge of a senior sailor whose alleged homosexuality was revealed on-line. This case also brings up issues of privacy on the internet since the on-line service, AOL, exposed confidential information to investigators. Join Ray Suarez for a look at the latest dispute over "Don't Ask, Don't Tell." January 19, 1998


A Bibliographical Survey of Philosophical Literature on Sexual Orientation

Biliographical essays are drawn from Lawrence M. Hinman, Contemporary Moral Issues

Review Articles and Bibliographies

For a short overview of some of the philosophical issues about homosexuality, see Richard D. Mohr, "Homosexuality," Encyclopedia of Ethics, edited by Lawrence C. Becker and Charlotte B. Becker (New York: Garland Publishing, Inc., 1992), Vol. I, pp. 552-554. For a bibliographical survey, see Robert B. Marks Ridinger, The Homosexual and Society: An Annotated Bibliography (New York: Greenwood Press, 1990)

General Books, Anthologies, and Articles

Perhaps the best sympathetic philosophical approach to these issues is to be found in Richard D. Mohr's Gays/Justice: A Study of Ethics, Society, and Law (New York: Columbia University Press, 1988). For a much different perspective, see Roger Scruton, Sexual Desire (London: Weidenfeld and Nicolson, 1985). Also see Michael Ruse, Homosexuality: A Philosophical Inquiry (New York: Basil Blackwell, 1968); Homosexuality and Ethics, edited by Edward Batchelor, Jr. (New York : Pilgrim Press, 1980); Magnuson, Roger J., Are Gay Rights Right?: Making Sense of the Controversy, Updated Edition (Portland, Or.: Multnomah, 1990).

On the "social construction" of the concept of homosexuality, see Edward Stein, Forms of Desire: Sexual Orientation and the Social Constructionist Controversy (New York: Routledge, 1992); David Halperin's One Hundred Years of Homosexuality (London: Routledge, 1992); and John Thorp's "The Social Construction of Homosexuality," Phoenix, Vol. 46, No. 1 (Spring, 1992), pp. 54- 61. On some of the moral issues surrounding research in this area, see Udo Schuklenk & Michael Ristow. "The Ethics of Research into the Cause(s) of Homosexuality," Journal of Homosexuality, Vol. 31, No. 3 (1996), pp. 5-30.

Homosexual Marriage

On the issue of gay and lesbian marriages, see Susanne Sherman, Lesbian and Gay Marriage (Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 1992); John Stott, Homosexual Partnerships?: Why Same-Sex Relationships Are Not a Christian Option (Downers Grove, IL.: InterVarsity Press, 1985); Lesbian and Gay Marriage: Private Commitments, Public Ceremonies, edited by Suzanne Sherman (Philadelphia : Temple University Press, 1992); Fear of a Queer Planet: Queer Politics and Social Theory, edited by Michael Warner (Minneapolis : University of Minnesota Press, 1993); Is Gay Good? Ethics, Theology, and Homosexuality, edited by W. Dwight Oberholtzer (Philadelphia, Westminster Press, 1971); John D'Emilio, Making Trouble: Essays on Gay History, Politics and the University. (New York: Routledge, 1992); Henry Abelove, et. al., editors, The Lesbian and Gay Studies Reader (New York: Routledge, 1993); Michael Nava and Robert Dawidoff, Created Equal: Why Gay Rights Matter to America (New York: St. Martin's Press, 1994).

Sexual Orientation and the Law

For an excellent introduction to some of the legal issues surrounding homosexuality, see Harvard Law Review, Editors, Sexual Orientation and the Law (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1989) and William B. Rubenstein, editor, Lesbians, Gay Men, and the Law (New York: The New Press, 1993).

Homosexuality and the Natural Law Tradition

For a discussion of homosexuality and the natural law tradition, see John M. Finnis.