The Hallmark Controversy – Can We Have a Real Discussion?


In its simplest terms, being attracted to someone of the same sex is a physical urge produced by an emotional response. Trust is where all of this lies, who we trust, how we attain intimacy with those we trust. Trust and Intimacy lie at the root of LGBTQ.

Are people born gay?

The genetics don’t support it. Being gay, or having a preference for a loving relationship with a member of the same sex is an emotional response.

When a person is unable (or unwilling) to engage in a relationship with a member of the opposite sex, is it because of an underlying emotional issue, or simply a preference? 

Most gay individuals will tell you they “knew”  they were gay from a young age. 

But studies suggests most likely a triggered event shut down the emotional response to a person towards the opposite sex, OR a person of the same sex caused experienced trauma that resulted in the inability to feel intimacy towards someone of the opposite sex. What is intimacy? It is the ability to trust.

Here are some common clinical examples of traumatic experiences that trigger a negative emotional response common among gay people:

  • A young child is sexually or physically victimized by a male family member or close associate
  • A young child is made to feel shame for being aroused (and thinking it was normal until they were told otherwise)
  • A young child is exposed to pornography and is unable to process his/her thoughts, other than being aroused (which, by the way, is normal since we are mammals).
  • A young child witnesses a parent, usually the mother who is abused
  • A young child witnesses a sibling being abused
  • Due to a limitations or circumstances, young children are deprived of developing a strong loving relationship with one or more of their parents at a young age

These are common examples of trauma that can trigger a negative emotional response, which in turn, prevents the child being able to form trusting relationships during the formative years of their life (usually in the first 14 years of life, but especially between the age of 1 and 7 years).

If this is all academic, let me explain my point.

People choose based on personal likings. How they developed those likings depends on a thousand different episodes which make up a person’s life that brings them to that point. But the inability to engage in a trusting relationship with a member of the opposite sex is the symptom of a social ‘trauma’ that most likely occurred during those years when they were developing relationship skills with others. Our failure to deal with the emotional damage as a result of a specific trauma has been replaced by the ideological push to accept the results of the emotional trauma. It is also true that mental health trauma is usually treated medicinally, instead of using therapy to discover the underlying root of the mental trauma.

For men it is about the sexual drive, for women it has always been about trust.

You see, emotions play a big role in our sexual identity. Emotions are almost always a reflection of prior cumulative results of a negative or positive experience.  If we deem men to be a threat, or unworthy, something inside women tells them to run. BY the same token, women can be very intimidating to men, especially in youth. I joke with my friends about the fact that for the first two years of life, most boys are introduced to the world while they are sucking on a breast, is it any wonder most men are obsessed with them?

But what happens when there is a dysfunctional or non existent relationship with a child and the parent. How does one learn to develop trust? This is so key to human development, and yet we refuse to have that conversation because we don’t want to imply there is anything wrong with being gay.

I have two neighbors who are lesbian. They are very kind and I sense that they love each other and feel quite satisfied to be in a trusting relationship. My brother is gay and I know he enjoys a sublime trusting relationship with his partner. It is also probably true that both women, and perhaps even my brother, could never achieve the same trusting love for a person of the opposite sex, or else they probably would have. But for reasons we may never know, they feel more comfortable being with someone of the same sex This is why I have no issue with same-sex marriage. Two adults are entitled to have a loving relationship as long as it is a healthy and emotionally satisfying.

My issue is that when the sexual identity of a person is a result of abuse or trauma we as a society don’t want to address that prickly issue. Most likely because it would be an admittance that the fact that many who identify as “gay” may just be experiencing sexual dysphoria due to an actual experience which prevents them from bonding in a normal heterosexual relationship. Instead, LGBTQ advocacy becomes an umbrella for all those who might be suffering from ongoing emotional trauma, and mask it by playing sexual identity games, that skirt the underlying trust issue. For example, when a young girl thinks she identifies as a boy, the first approach is to determine IF something triggered this emotional response. To simply assume they were born in the wrong body is to ignore science. There are thousands of trigger events, the most common being emotional immaturity, that might confuse a child or young adult, but immediately adopting a new sexual identity should be the last resort – if at all.

But for the LGBTQ community to protest Hallmark Television’s decision to refrain from showing a commercial featuring two women at the altar kissing each other (under pressure, Hallmark reversed its decision, no doubt due to advocacy driven by the army of LGBTQ activism) is to miss the point. 

People protested Hallmark for airing the commercial because they don’t want to have a channel dedicated to family-friendly programming feature a scene of two women kissing. It forces a discussion that people have a right not to have to address. Period. It doesn’t matter that you might feel they have no right to feel that way, but they do. 

LGBTQ advocacy doesn’t belong on family-friendly channels for the same reason that they don’t (or shouldn’t) show racy sex scenes on the Disney channel. Just because progressives have adopted the normalcy of liberal sexuality doesn’t mean it’s established moral authority to do so. Just because Hollywood thinks it’s time to “woke” people about gayness, doesn’t mean it is. Respect must be afforded that allows people to choose their own time when to discuss controversial issues in their home – at their own choosing.


Children need fathers and mothers.  When society’s mores become entangled in emotionally destructive behavior SUCH AS PROMISCUITY, the family units fall apart (because there are no longer norms as touchstones we can build upon); society loses its bearing and family units no longer provide the soil of stability for good character growth and strong moral decision making. To deny this fact is to deny the entirety of the human experience. Families are far more important to society than sexual liberation.

Young men, now being told its okay to kiss other men, experiment, and then live with guilt for the rest of their lives. Young women, abused by older women, or by older men, develop long-term emotional duress because they can no longer trust adults. It is a sad fact that a majority of women who identify as lesbian or bisexual have been sexually assaulted at least once in their childhood. The same is also true for boys. Young boys who have been sexually assaulted by older men often go on to victimize other boys when they get older because they feel tainted by pedophilia. 

Gay men are far more promiscuous than gay women. The rules of social conduct didn’t change simply because people became open to have different sexual partners. Men are just naturally more sexually active than women. Two gay men are naturally going to exploit their sexual activity much more than two gay women. 

But instead of society dealing with these kinds of underlying emotional issues that probably play a major role in what is called sexual identity dysphoria, we normalize it without attempting to understand the cause of a person not being able to connect emotionally or normally with a member of the opposite sex. so they confuse this with sexuality. They can’t connect emotionally, perhaps due to fear or trust issues, so they externalize this into changing the rules of their sexual partners, thinking this will resolve the issue. They stop trying to overcome the emotional handicap, and instead, accept homosexuality as an alternative.

I love Ellen Degeneres. I have been a fan since her TV show, and even before when she was doing standup comedy. I fully respect her relation with her partner. She being gay has no bearing on my opinion of her. But if she (or anyone, really) chooses to be gay, my first question will be, “what was it that made it impossible for her to have intimacy with a man?” 

Let’s start there.

If a person told me he likes to wear high heel shoes and walk around naked, pretty good bet that person was exposed to something that triggered that emotional behavior. But is it not better to resolve the underlying issue so that the person doesn’t fetishize his/her behavior?

In the 1970’s American society obligingly understood it was no longer appropriate to discriminate against people based on their sexual orientation. It has been codified and there are clear protections afforded to people who identify with being gay. This is a good thing.

But then being gay became a trend, it became license to be promiscuous for men. In the 90’s it became deadly. Being gay was to be a protected class in the midst of a scourge that spread (AIDS), and because of this protection, tens of thousands of men died because infected partner we free to spread HIV/AIDS. I personally knew six people, 4 of them gay, two straight, that died from AIDS and none of them used needles. My point is that sexual orientation should never have been turned into a commodity. But it has and it continues to be sold as a “lifestyle choice.”

The next evolution has occurred and this is what adults were afraid of. Excess.

Now that we welcome gay people with open arms, sexuality has become “fluid‘ and now children as young as three are allowed to have body-modifying surgery based on a parents decision to turn their child into the opposite sex. Sexual identity is now a choice, and encouraged. Can you imagine how confusing this is for pre-teens? Sexual fluidity is promoted by young children’s mentors, the media and now higher education. It is as if being sexually fluid is somehow virtuous, that “coming out” is an act of extreme bravery, when it may be the result of social pressure to conform in order to gain acceptance.

It was never about two adult women deciding to consummate a life together with a kiss, it was always about the promotion of sexuality as a commodity like clothing. It was also about undermining the moral and ethical teachings of our culture to make room for the new paradigm where there are no real rules, except embrace “your truth,” which is relative to the truth

Sending a message to our youth that it is okay to be gay, bi, gender fluid, non-binary, trans, or whatever other of the 123 sexual flavors there are, is leading these immature minds on a destructive and confusing path to sexual dysphoria, and it will no doubt effect their ability to have healthy, normal relationships later, not just with members of the opposite sex, but with all people who may (or may not) conform to their self-appointed identity.

JR Watkins is a social commentator and behavioral analyst.

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