A Review Of Robert R. Reilly. “Making Gay Okay: How Rationalizing Homosexual Behavior Is Changing Everything.” San Francisco: Ignatius Press, 2014. 215 pp. $17.74. -- By: Andrew Walker

Journal: Journal for Biblical Manhood and Womanhood
Volume: JBMW 20:1 (Spring 2015)
Article: A Review Of Robert R. Reilly. “Making Gay Okay: How Rationalizing Homosexual Behavior Is Changing Everything.” San Francisco: Ignatius Press, 2014. 215 pp. $17.74.
Author: Andrew Walker


A Review Of Robert R. Reilly. “Making Gay Okay: How Rationalizing Homosexual Behavior Is Changing Everything.” San Francisco: Ignatius Press, 2014. 215 pp. $17.74.

Andrew Walker

Director of Policy Studies
The Ethics and Religious Liberties Commission
Nashville, Tennessee

In late 2013, Duck Dynasty reality TV star Phil Robertson, an outspoken evangelical Christian, made a moral proposition that drew public outcry: He stated that homosexual conduct is sinful. While refraining from offering the full quote, Robertson ended his statement on homosexuality saying, “It’s not logical, my man. It’s just not logical.” However crude or inarticulate Robertson’s comments were (and indeed, his language isn’t commendable), Robertson expressed what was once a common moral sentiment in American life: That homosexuality is immoral, taboo, and indecent; that it defies the pillars of human essence.

Robertson’s appeal to logic, and the seeming obviousness of his statement, didn’t seem logical to the adherents of sexual libertinism. Robertson’s statements muster an important proposition—that there is an intelligibility or structure inherent to sexual activity. But what happens when the obviousness of male and female complementarity is cast asunder? What happens if sexuality is construed solely by the assumptions of modern society— assumptions that deny sexual telos and renders sexuality purposeless? Sexuality becomes subject entirely to self-definition.

An important book was published in early 2014 that addresses how society can rationalize and internalize sexual error. The book is Robert Reilly’s Making Gay Okay: How Rationalizing Homosexual Behavior Is Changing Everything.

I want to state this book’s praise upfront. Though I’m weary of the theatrics that arise from grandiose praise, Making Gay Okay stands as the most persuasive natural law argument against homosexuality I’ve ever read.

The Rationalization Of Immoral Behavior

To conserve space I will focus more on the foundation of Reilly’s main argument and less on the supplementary and evidentiary examples that Reilly uses to strengthen his main point. The second half of the book, titled “Marching through the Institutions” simply demonstrates how the rationalization of homosexuality has become mainstreamed in prominent American institutions such as education, the Boy Scouts, and the military.

Reilly begins his book by offering a meta-level analysis on the two ways in which persons can construe reality:

There are two fundamental views of reality. One is ...

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