By: Hendrik van der Breggen
Lady Gaga’s popular song “Born This Way” (sometimes described as a “gay anthem”) affirms and celebrates various diversities as good, including sexual diversity—homosexuality, bisexuality, and transgender sexuality. Why? Because, according to Gaga and many of her fans, this is how one is formed at birth, and, according to Gaga, “God makes no mistakes.”
Is this good moral reasoning? I think not. I have two arguments to support my view: one philosophical, one theological.
A philosophical argument
Here is some philosophical reasoning—which applies whether one believes in God or not.
Lady Gaga rightly encourages us to respect and accept all people, regardless of race, gender, sexual orientation, etc. After all, each person has great intrinsic moral worth (Christians would say that this is so because each person is made in the image of God, but one needn’t be a Christian to recognize this worth). So far, so good.
But at this juncture Lady Gaga’s thinking become problematic.
Respecting and accepting all people doesn’t automatically also mean that we should accept and affirm all the behaviours of all people. Nor does it also mean that we should accept and affirm all their (our) dispositions and urges to behave in various ways.
Why not? Because not all urges and behaviours are good—some urges and behaviours are harmful to one’s self and/or others.