Response to Eugene's Post on Gay "Conversion":
I have a number of difficulties with Eugene's post on whether gays and lesbians are trying to "convert" people to homosexual behavior, but let me press on just one: If the question is what a person or group of persons is subjectively trying to do, then I don't see the relevance of what the person or group should want to do, might want to do, or what the likely effect of the group's action might be. If I understand Eugene's post correctly, his claim is the former but the arguments are about the latter.

   Specifically, if the claim is that "gays and lesbians are trying to convert others to homosexual behavior," then we need some kind of evidence of individual people or groups subjectively trying to bring about a sexual "conversion." It may be true that destigmatizing homosexuality has the effect of making someone on the fence more likely to engage in homosexual conduct. But even if that is right, I don't see how it is relevant to the question of whether gays and lesbians are "trying" to do something, much less specifically trying to "convert" someone to homosexuality .

  If I read his post correctly, Eugene tries to work around this problem by speculating about motive. If there is a clear link between stigma and conduct, he reasons, then it's likely that some of the activists who claim to be focused on the former are really trying to influence the latter. But this is mere speculation of intent, not proof of it. Plus, it seems rather far-fetched to me. Most people who encounter social disapproval for their conduct are probably more concerned about ending that stigma than about getting other people to be more like them.

  Anyway, that's my sense of things. As always, civil and respectful comments only.