Talk about sexualizing the youth.
Personally, I would have put on the tag "escaped the abortionist." But maybe that's just me.
The Vatican, of course, tut-tuts, and so that makes that the lead on the ANSA report, while the openly gay philosopher's skepticism is at the bottom of the story. (There's more details of what Gianni Vattimo said here, but I can't find the original article in Corriere Della Sera, in Italian or English).
Gianni Vattimo described the campaign as “excessive” and said the slogan included “is too biology-centric. Of course for a homosexual it is natural to be gay, but I'm not too sure it is determined by genetics.”The text on the poster -- "sexual orientation is not a choice" -- actually would be defensible if not for that ridiculous image, which pushes you to take a radical (and absurd) reading of the various ways that sentence can be parsed.
As I never tire of pointing out, there is in fact not a single shred of evidence -- yes, not a one -- that says homosexuality, even as a disposition, in determinedly inborn, which is the only way it can be meaningful to label newborn babies "homosexual" (and why not bisexual or transgendered).
Still, there is some suggestive evidence for much-more-modest claims -- that genes or hormone levels in pregnancy dispose toward homosexuality; that psychological events prior to puberty and/or conscious sexual agency affect one's sexuality; that an adult "sexual orientation" can be very difficult (in some cases impossible) to alter. While, on a moment's reflection, all serious people know that there is *an* element of choice involved in sexuality (not the same thing as saying it's fully and consciously chosen) and that change is *possible* (not the same thing as saying it's likely) ... certainly these facts do not make homosexual attractions a full-blown choice comparable to, say, what career to have.
Where there is not willful lying, obscurantism, ignorance, unwillingness to listen ... I think part of the reason so many people believe the "born gay" or "sexual orientation is not a choice (in any sense)" falsehood is the tendency to view one's own life and others' lives in narrative terms, i.e., in teleological terms. In other words, people reason from "how I am" or "I have XYZ features" (you'll notice I'm not talking specifically about "sexual orientation" yet) to "I am supposed to be this way." And then, since all forms of personality formation are two-sided processes, the "present" becomes retroactive justification, baptizing the "past," while the "past" ("present") continues to create the "present" ("future") that does the baptizing. You justify what you become and you become what you justify.
I am 40 years old and never had a sexual thought for a woman in my life and have had some thoughts about men for more than 30 of those years. It would therefore be very easy for me (and I doubt I'm alone in this respect) to assume that this was how it was meant to be. As the Italian gay MEP notes above, it even becomes, in a certain sense, "natural" for you or for that class of person. It's a thought that even comes in religious flavors, gussying up everything in your life with providential labels like "God's will" and "this is how God intended it." And it's no leap at all then back to "God made Mary Cheney gay."
Theodicy is a thorny question obviously, particularly if "God doesn't make mistakes." But keeping their eyes too focused on the present, the "gay-friendly" Christian says "and since God made me gay, being gay cannot be a mistake, ergo homosexual acts are good." And if all Scripture and 2,000 years of tradition say otherwise ... well ... hmmm ... "God is still speaking." Because to justify how far along the "gay-friendly Christian" already is, and cannot go back on, He has to be.