I know that I am laying myself open to attack from the prejudiced, and I expect a sackful of hate-mail tomorrow morning.
But I can keep my secret no longer, and it is this: I disapprove of homosexuality; I find public displays of sexual desire between members of the same sex distasteful; I think that even long term and faithful relationships between homosexuals can never be more than a parody of heterosexual marriage; oh, and the very thought of buggery disgusts me.
I have other prejudices, too, which I may as well get off my chest while I am in this confessional mood. I believe that there is a number of character weaknesses to which male homosexuals are particularly (but by no means exclusively) prone - cattiness, selfishness, promiscuity and cowardice among them....
....What prompted me to "out" myself in this way was Wednesday's leader in the 'Sun', commenting on Peter Mandelson's refusal to react to the assertion made on 'Newsnight' by Matthew Parris, a newspaper columnist and former Tory MP: "I think Mandelson is certainly gay."
"The fact is: Mandelson is gay," the paper said. "He also has a brilliant mind. He is also a talented politician. And it is also true that times have changed. The British people will not turn on Mandelson because he is gay. And they will sympathise with him for the way in which he was 'exposed'. We say to Mandelson: tell the truth. You will win respect for your honesty."
The 'Sun' was right about one thing. Times have certainly changed when the editor of what was once the country's greatest bastion of political incorrectness is prepared to say that an admission of homosexuality should not count against a politician. But I wonder if the paper is right to imply that the majority of the British people have undergone the same conversion. I suspect not - and I hope not, which is why I venture today into the politically incorrect breach.
If my suspicion is right, the great majority of us still believe, in our heart of hearts, that there is something nasty and wrong about homosexual intercourse. What has changed is that it is no longer considered respectable to say so publicly.
Whereas half a century ago it was a jolly brave thing to invite scorn by admitting to a weakness for the love that dared not speak its name, today all the opprobrium is directed against those of us who disapprove of the love that shrieks its name from California to Clapham Common.
Our condition has even been given a fancy-sounding name, "homophobia", as if we are suffering from an irrational disorder. If I thought that this was indeed the case, I would keep very quiet about my affliction. But it is because I believe that homophobia is right, and nothing to be ashamed of, that I feel I should say so.
Let me say at once that I am not suggesting that homosexuals should be victimised. I would not wish any man to lose his job simply because he finds other men sexually attractive. Nor do I think that anybody should be rude to homosexuals, let alone harm them physically. What I do think is that the proper attitude to adopt towards homosexuals is one of tolerant disapproval, because homosexuality is an unsatisfactory and often squalid and unhappy way of life, and nobody should be encouraged to take it up.
Perhaps some will think it is too late now to try to soften the remarks that I made at the beginning of this column, which many will have found offensive. But I would like to record with perfect truth (although how people will mock the familiar 'apologia' of the bigot) that Some of My Best Friends Are Homosexuals. I realise that some excellent qualities are particularly to be found in homosexuals - wit springs to mind - and of course many of the worlds's greatest artists have been homosexual.
I know, too, that many homosexuals have fought valiantly for their country and that many bore calumny and violence with astonishing bravery at a time when they had to expect it. They are not all catty cowards, by any means.
Above all, I would like to say that if any of my four sons turns out to be homosexual, I will not love him the less for it.
What appals me, though, is the way in which militant homosexuals seem to be engaged in a massive recruitment drive, with the Gay Pride marches and those flesh-creeping advertisements for Gay Exchange and other similar chat-lines, shown night after night on the television.
I do not mind a bit what homosexuals get up to in private (although I do not like the idea of it). But it is when they go public that my stomach turns. The homosexual lobby seems to have moved on from its campaign to redress civil wrongs to proclaiming that it is positively a good thing to be gay. Well, it isn't. In far too many cases, homosexuality is a squalid and - since the advent of Aids - a downright dangerous way of life. The less that society disapproves of it, the more likely are the young to get into it while they are going through what may be only a phase.
All I ask is that these people shut up about it, and stop pretending that homosexuality is as normal and healthy as the love between a man and a woman. I applaud Mr Mandelson's refusal to "come out". I hope that other homosexuals follow his example and stay firmly in the closet, where they can do none but themselves any harm.
Huff! You say and maybe much more but.....these are not my words...they are an extract of an article written by journalist Tom Utley, and published in The Daily Telegraph some 13 or so years ago.
However, I do like the sentiment he expresses; it sums up much of what I believe about homosexuality and those who follow that path.
I do not think that it is "homophobic" to criticise homosexuals, I even do not think it is "homophobic" to say that one dislikes them, as a generalisation.
One may dislike a person but still hold a Christian love for them.
It would be "homophobic" to find it impossible to remain in the same railway carriage as one or to run screaming from the room when a homosexual enters.
Tom Utley now writes regularly for The Daily Mail. He is a father of four boys and a Catholic.
I hope he will forgive me for airing this article from the 1990s.