Why Natural Law Theory Is an Inadequate Criticism of Homosexuality
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Albert Einstein one said, "Common sense is the collection of prejudices acquired by age eighteen."(Quotations,162) There is some truth to what he said in relation to Natural Law Theory. It would seem that Natural Law is based at least in part on common sense. This essay will attempt to discredit the Theory of Natural Law on these grounds, as well as proving that it is inapplicable when judging the ethical value of homosexuality, and discrediting homosexuality as a "perversion." Act utilitarianism depicts the argument more clearly, because there are certain semantic inconsistencies with Kantian ethical Theory that will be discussed further on.
Let us first consider the premise that homosexuality is contrary to Natural Law, because the Natural Law dictates that sexual relationships must be heterosexual and have as a (perhaps eventual) goal of reproduction. According to an Australian newspaper, there are 450 species of animals on the Earth that practice homosexuality. Although asexual worms may come to mind at first, the article clearly states that the most frequent occurrences are by pygmy chimpanzees (50% of all sexual activity), and that "wild bottlenose dolphins can form long-lasting male-male pair bonds." The behaviors of only these two species can begin to show us the flaws with human Natural Law Theory. Even if we do not believe in evolution, chimpanzees still share 98% of human DNA, and dolphins are humanity's acknowledged "intellectual cousins." If one is inclined to discredit this comparison on grounds that humans are the only rational species, then consider this quote. "[Homosexuality]...could be linked to a genetic tendency for heightened sexual activity, giving the animals a reproductive advantage, or it could have s...
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...rounds that all of life is a democracy. Outside of Natural Law Theory we must still ask the significance of sex. Is it something we were given naturally and then turned into something artificial? Bette Milder once said, "If sex is such a natural phenomenon, how come there are so many books on how to?"(Quotations, 179) Or is there only one true type of sexual relationship and our duty to uphold it, in the way the State in George Orwell's "1984" portrays sex as the duty to populating the country to serve the state and nothing else?
Quotations for Speeches. Daintith, John. 2nd ed. London: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC, 2000.
Smith. Deborah. "450 animal species gaily indulge in homosexual behaviour." Sydney Morning Herald (July 28, 2004)
MacKinnon, Barbara. Ethics: Theory and Contemporary Issues. 4th ed. San Francisco: Thomson Wadsworth, 2004.