He married his wife in September but struggled in private for two more decades with his ongoing attraction to men. Less than yards from one of the restrooms, two groups of children were playing football and soccer. Sex isn't always the inevitable conclusion.
His son had just left on an LDS mission. The judge allowed John to waive a formal reading of the charges, sparing him the repeated humiliation of being labeled in front of a courtroom full of people. But under that shell, John, now 57, said he'd struggled with an attraction to men since age 3 or 4. Their divorce was final by the following April. John approached the man and was assaulted. Breaking the law A few years later in , John was arrested for cruising in Sugarhouse Park. Before coming out of the closet, John appeared to be a typical Utah man. What I try to do is, if you will, desexualize what it means to be gay. It crosses the line when there is a public behavior in a public place. The new focus on addressing the reasons for cruising has helped address that health concern, Ferguson said. After John left the shop about 20 minutes later, one of the men in the group followed him up the block. You can't go to priesthood meeting and talk about your personal problems, where you can meet somebody at the park and just talk about the frustration you're feeling. Instead of throwing men into jail for having sex in public places, offenders were allowed to participate in a therapy program called Healthy Self Expressions. To say that cruising is only about sex would a be gross generalization, say those familiar with the practice. Police and public health officials worry about cruising's effect on health and public safety. When he does face the urge to cruise again, John goes through a mental checklist using the acronym HALT hungry, angry, lonely, tired. Less than 1 percent of the men Buie treats have had substance-abuse problems. During a recent operation at a Salt Lake park, vice officers arrested eight men in the space of three hours for engaging in lewd acts in a public restroom. The need for an emotional bond drives many of them. After learning the Deseret Morning News was printing a story about his arrest for soliciting sex from an undercover male police officer, Parker abruptly walked off the House of Representatives floor in the middle of the legislative session and submitted his handwritten resignation to House Speaker Marty Stephens. Frustrated by the number of men engaging in sex at Oxbow Park, a coalition of police, prosecutors, gay community leaders, government officials, therapists and public health officials met to discuss the problem. John said he did notice a definite difference when he appeared in court on the charges. And despite constant arrests, the long-held stereotypes on both sides did little to solve the problem. He was born a sixth-generation member of the LDS Church, served a proselyting mission and was married with four children. The average length of those marriages is 23 to 24 years. John went to a Salt Lake gym, met another man and went to a park with him.
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