In classical antiquity, writers such as Herodotus, Plato, Xenophon, Athenaeus and many others explored aspects of same-sex love in ancient Greece. The most widespread and socially significant form of same-sex sexual relations in ancient Greece was between adult men and pubescent or adolescent boys, known as pederasty (marriages in Ancient Greece between men and women were also age structured, with men in their thirties commonly taking wives in their early teens). Though homosexual relationships between adult men did exist, at least one member of each of these relationships flouted social conventions by assuming a passive sexual role. It is unclear how such relations between women were regarded in the general society, but examples do exist as far back as the time of Sappho.
The ancient Greeks did not conceive of sexual orientation as a social identifier as modern Western societies have done. Greek society did not distinguish sexual desire or behavior by the gender of the participants, but rather by the role that each participant played in the sex act, that of active penetrator or passive penetrated. This active/passive polarization corresponded with dominant and submissive social roles: the active (penetrative) role was associated with masculinity, higher social status, and adulthood, while the passive role was associated with femininity, lower social status, and youth.
Same-sex attitudes and behaviors in ancient Rome often differ markedly from those of the contemporary West. Latin lacks words that would precisely translate "homosexual" and "heterosexual". The primary dichotomy of ancient Roman sexuality was active/dominant/masculine and passive/submissive/"feminized". Roman society was patriarchal, and the freeborn male citizen possessed political liberty (libertas) and the right to rule both himself and his household (familia). "Virtue" (virtus) was seen as an active quality through which a man (vir) defined himself. The conquest mentality and "cult of virility" shaped same-sex relations. Roman men were free to enjoy sex with other males without a perceived loss of masculinity or social status, as long as they took the dominant or penetrative role. Acceptable male partners were slaves, prostitutes, and entertainers, whose lifestyle placed them in the nebulous social realm of infamia, excluded from the normal protections accorded a citizen even if they were technically free. Although Roman men in general seem to have preferred youths between the ages of 12 and 20 as sexual partners, freeborn male minors were strictly off-limits, and professional prostitutes and entertainers might be considerably older.
Same-sex relations among women are less documented. Although Roman women of the upperclasses were educated, and are known to have written poetry and corresponded with male relatives, very few fragments of anything that might have been written by women survive. Male writers took little interest in how women experienced sexuality in general; the Augustan poet Ovid takes an exceptionally keen interest, but advocates for a heterosexual lifestyle contrary to Roman sexual norms. During the Republic and early Principate, little is recorded of sexual relations among women, but better and more varied evidence, though scattered, exists for the later Imperial period.
Opposition to marriage privatization, like its endorsement, is equally likely to be found arising from conservative or liberal sources and a wide variety of objections are made.
Some opponents of marriage privatization can argue that such a policy will simply shift the current debate over same-sex marriage to civil unions.
Conservative religious opponents of same-sex marriage may feel that privatizing marriage is still a state endorsement of what they consider to be immoral unions between homosexual couples. Thus many of the same religious arguments aimed against same-sex marriage might be applied to marriage privatization as well. Conservative evangelical Baptist R. Albert Mohler, Jr. has stated that he opposes the privatizaton of marriage because "markets do not always encourage or support moral behavior" and he believes the proposal would "[destroy] marriage as a public institution."
Princeton professor Robert P. George has argued that marriage has an important cultural role in helping children develop into "basically honest, decent law abiding people of goodwill– citizens– who can take their rightful place in society". Thus, he concludes, "Family is built on marriage, and government- the state- has a profound interest in the integrity and well-being of marriage, and to write it off as if it were purely a religiously significant action and not an institution and action that has a profound public significance, would be a terrible mistake". This position is seconded by Jennifer Morse of the Witherspoon Institute, who argues that if literally anyone can define marriage as whatever they want, the state forfeits the ability to sufficiently secure the best interests of children. She goes further, arguing that the logic of marriage privatization "at the expense of children, is a concept developed by adults that will benefit only adults."
Stanley Kurtz of National Review has written that privatization would be a "disaster". He argued that government "still has to decide what sort of private unions merit benefits... under this privatization scheme", and then "we also get the same quarrels over social recognition that we got before privatization." He commented that the government will have to deal with polygamous, polyamorous, and incestuous relationships attempting to obtain contracts under the new scheme as well as attempts by heterosexual acquaintances to make "marriages of convenience" to obtain things such as spousal medical insurance. His National Review colleague Maggie Gallagher has also called privatization as a "fantasy" since "[t]here is scarcely a dollar that state and federal government spends on social programs that is not driven in large part by family fragmentation: crime, poverty, drug abuse, teen pregnancy, school failure, mental and physical health problems."
•Marriage as existing solely between one man and one woman precedes civil government.
•Marriage is the preeminent and the most fundamental of all human social institutions... Society begins with marriage and the family.
"Lola" is a song written by Ray Davies and performed by English rock band the Kinks on their album Lola Versus Powerman and the Moneygoround, Part One. The song details a romantic encounter between a young man and a possible transgender woman, whom he meets in a club in Soho, London. In the song, the narrator describes his confusion towards a person named Lola who "walked like a woman and talked like a man". The song was released in the United Kingdom on 12 June 1970, while in the United States it was released on 28 June 1970. Commercially, the single reached number two on the UK Singles Chart and number nine on the Billboard Hot 100. However, due to its controversial subject matter and use of the brand name Coca-Cola, the single received backlash and even bans in Britain and Australia.
"Walk on the Wild Side" is a song by Lou Reed from his second solo album, Transformer (1972). It was produced by David Bowie. The song received wide radio coverage, despite its touching on taboo topics such as transsexuality, drugs, male prostitution and oral sex. In the United States, RCA released the single using an edited version of the song without the reference to oral sex. The lyrics, describing a series of individuals and their journeys to New York City, refer to several of the regular "superstars" at Andy Warhol's New York studio, the Factory, namely Holly Woodlawn, Candy Darling, Joe Dallesandro, Jackie Curtis and Joe Campbell (referred to in the song by his nickname Sugar Plum Fairy). Candy Darling was also the subject of Reed's earlier song for The Velvet Underground, "Candy Says".
All The Young Dudes, Mott the Hoople's single, was released in July 1972 and made No. 3 in the UK charts, No. 37 in the US (in November) and No. 31 in Canada, and appeared on their album of the same name in September of that year. In November 1972, Bowie introduced the band on stage at the Tower near Philadelphia and performed the song with Hunter (released on All the Way from Stockholm to Philadelphia in 1998 and the expanded version of All The Young Dudes in 2006).
Even though the band was heterosexual, this became a gay anthem, at least in America, thanks to lyrics like "Lucy looks sweet 'cause he dresses like a queen." This was the nature of glam rock, a style that emerged in England in the early '70s where singers performed in makeup and feminine clothes while playing bombastic rock songs. The performers were not necessarily gay, but they definitely blurred gender roles. Bowie may have been the biggest influence on glam rock.
After the first recording session for this song, Bowie thought it was lagging at the end. Mott lead singer Ian Hunter responded with the idea for the one-way conversation, which begins with him saying, "Hey, you down there, you with the glasses!" Said Hunter: "I remembered an encounter I'd had with a heckler during a recent gig at the Rainbow [in London]. He was annoying me, and I ended up pouring beer all over him." In any case, Luther Grovesvenor join the band not long after this became a hit and Luther went by the nom de plume Ariel Bender which is British slang for a homosexual.