Homosexuals, once hesitant about declaring their sexual orientation and fighting discrimination, are now demanding equal treatment. Overturning the military's ban on gay and lesbian personnel is their most immediate aim, but far from the only one. They also seek passage of a federal civil rights law giving them the same sort of protection enjoyed by racial and ethnic minorities. Homosexuality deserves such protection, they say, because it is biologically determined and immutable. Conservatives, on the other hand, insist that homosexuality is a freely chosen behavior that can be modified. Thus, they say, gays and lesbians are demanding “special rights.” The special-rights argument helped win approval of an anti-gay-rights law in Colorado last fall, and it is expected to surface again during the debate on the military ban.