March 4, 2010
Rabbi Shlomo Brody, writing for the Jerusalem Post's "Ask The Rabbi" section, says that:
"Many Orthodox rabbis, however, recognize that along the continuum of different types of sexual attractions, many gay individuals retain a strong attraction to members of the same sex which is irreversible. In a famous 1974 article, Rabbi Norman Lamm posited that while homosexual acts always remain prohibited, the actors are not legally culpable for actions that stem from involuntary inclinations (oness). Most Orthodox thinkers have rejected this thesis, since one always retains the free will to abstain from sexual activity. Nonetheless, they acknowledge the tremendous challenge of such celibacy, and recognize that sexually active homosexuals (especially those who do not espouse an anti-religious agenda) should not be viewed as defiant rebels worthy of ostracism (mumar le-hachis). Rather, they must be approached with understanding and compassion, and should be treated as respectfully as other contemporary Jews whose level of observance does not reach halachic standards (mumar le-te’avon or tinok she-nishba)."
It's an interesting piece, no matter what your views on homosexuality and Liberal Judaism's successful efforts to be allowed to carry out civil partnerships between homosexual couples in the synagogues.
Read it in full here.