Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Gay Groups Decry Surgeon General Nominee

From the AP via the Huffington Post courtesy of AlterNet:

President Bush's nominee for surgeon general, Kentucky cardiologist Dr. James Holsinger, has come under fire from gay rights groups for voting to expel a lesbian pastor from the United Methodist Church and writing in 1991 that gay sex is unnatural and unhealthy.

Also, Holsinger helped found a Methodist congregation that, according to gay rights activists, believes homosexuality is a matter of choice and can be "cured."

"He has a pretty clear bias against gays and lesbians," said Christina Gilgor, director of the Kentucky Fairness Alliance, a gay rights group. "This ideology flies in the face of current scientific medical studies. That makes me uneasy that he rejects science and promotes ideology."

Holsinger, 68, has declined all interview requests.


Sixteen years ago, he wrote a paper for the church in which he likened the reproductive organs to male and female "pipe fittings" and argued that homosexuality is therefore biologically unnatural.

More here.

I think I know of at least two gay flamingos that would disagree with Holsinger's assertion that homosexuality is "biologically unnatural." But this isn't simply a debate about a controversial social issue. The Surgeon General takes the lead in formulating and directing US public health policy, and Bush's latest bone-throw to the religious right is obviously unqualified to do the job. That is, he's yet another one of those Bush people whose faith trumps science. That this part-time minister honestly believes that homosexuals "can be cured" and that sexual orientation "is a matter of choice" stands in stark contrast to virtually all serious scientific research on the subject. This is not the kind of guy we need as Surgeon General.

I will give him this: at least he's actually a doctor, and therefore somewhat qualified for the position, unlike heckuva-job Brownie over at FEMA was.