Homosexuality, Biology and Scientific Research...
Jun. 12th, 2004 @ 10:46 pm
Okay, I'm a bit nervous about posting this.
Thi isn't in the same vein as all the previous posts about current anti-gay campaigns or legislations. This is about the biological roots of homosexuality, the scientific ideas on it, and, more relevantly, how 'doctors' (and I use the term as loosely as possible for these genuinely abhorrent practitioners) used to try to cure homosexuality.WARNING: This is not nice stuff. Although the scientific details are always simply set out and coherently worked through, the details of what was done to homosexuals in pursuit of a cure are beyond the pale. I've seen live spinal surgery, I was looking at going into medicine, I'm pretty unsqueamish. This stll turns my stomach. I cannot imagine that I will ever forget what I've read here. It's *not nice*.
It is, however, a good background on the subject and gives us a clear warning as to why we have to keep fighting until homosexuals are accepted as completely equal, in all walks of life.http://www.theatlantic.com/issues/97jun/burr2.htm
edit: sorry about it not posting the link, my computer did a cool crash odd thing. *digs out the anti-virus*. You'd have thought being naturally blonde I'd have learnt to stay away from computers...
Current Music: Richard Marx - Right Here Waiting
Were you going to post a link to the article?
*shit* sorry, my puter crashed as a pposted it. i'm onto it...
and I apparently can't type either...
Very interesting, and quiote time consuming^_^.
yeah, took me bloody ages to read.
I read your link. It is interesting but may I posit two things that take the debate in an entirely different direction. Just because something may be the result of largely environmental influences does not mean that it becomes a matter of choice. Behavioural sciences (learning schedules) and cognitive sciences (schemas) all expalin behaviour in terms of ones past exposures - the sum of which is not a choice of an individual - hence the outcome of which is just as unavoidable for the individual. I argue that the search for a genetic factor, in order to prove there is no "choice" in sexual orientation is misguided. Environmental factors are just as dictating. Further the interraction between both genes and environment is crucial. Obviously without the structure informed by the genetioc make up on the organism there would be now organism - environment interraction and hence any object o0f study!
May I entertain a completely radical idea? Without going on about this exhaustiovely I would also like to point out that we live in a liberal society. Such a society should recognise that individuals can and should be abble to make choices! Even if I choose to a homosexual that should be recognise as my right! If I choose to have a coffee in the morning, go on a holiday at the end of the year or become a homosexual they are all my rightful endeavours. The search to find that factor that proves there is no choice, although I'm sure it exists, is insulting because it seeks to justify my behaviour that should be just accepted!
Nothing personal though. I just go out into the world, out shine, out wit, out grow and out smart all Bushites that get in my way. They look at me and try and place the label of disfunctionality on my forhead. How thsi clashes with everything else I am! Though now I am trying to justiofy myself and becoming a hypocryt. Ohh well
lol! To be fair, we're all trying to put down the Bushites.
And I totally agreewith what you said about choice. Although I believe that there may be a level of choice for some, and a very limited few, people (ie my best friend is bisexual but because of her bad experiences with men, chooses to call herself gay and avoid relationships with men), I believe that in your natural sexuality there is no choice.
But I also totally agree that it shouldn't matter if there is a choice. If I, as a bisexual, choose never to date the opposite sex, it shouldn't be a issue. Nor should it be an issue if I choose to live and have relationships as a straight girl.
I do, however, think that it's important to establish the scientific background of sexuality, purely for people's right to know themselves and understand the parts of themselves that they cannot control or change.
I have thought much about the argument that even if it was a choice, it should still be allowed. (Let me just say that i am gay, and it certainly wasn't a choice for me). I like the argument, but i have found some issues raised by it that i haven't been able to resolve. Namely Incest and Polygamy. If you follow the reasoning from the argument that even if it's a choice it should be ok, doesn't that allow incest and polygamy?
I actually dont have a problem with polygamy! If its consential between parties concerned and all that disagrees with it are the units constructed out of christian sensibilities then I say go for it! With regards to incest that is different firstly if this is happening underage then we must consider the ability to consent. Secondly even if the parties are old enough to consent one must consider the rights of future unborn children that will have massively increased chances of defects.
Gay incest is an interesting point though. I cant really think of a logical reason why not. Mabey merely the fact that this creates a rights based precedent for mixed sex incest
I agree with a lot you've said, especially for polygamy. As long as any children are protected and given a strong, honest and loving upbringing, I can't really see an issue. Incest I'm not so sure about, though again, the main issue is concern for the health and wellbeing of any children born from it.
Thank you. I am not sure what I think about polygamy~, but really I suppose it isn't my business what consenting adults do as long as it doesn't affect me, others, or unborn babies in a markedly negative way. As for incest, I still don't know (like what about sterile siblings? is that ok?, I believe it is Arizona that allows old, sterile siblings to be together, hehe). My only thought for that last example is that maybe those that commit incest(gay or st8) are psychologically unbalanced, or poorly developed? (Crazy 'cuz it kinda' sounds like doctors of old describing homosexuality, hehe). Unfortunatly, none of these arguments, valid and logical though they maybe, will ever sway the religious zealots, : ( .
|Date:||June 21st, 2004 04:13 am (UTC)|| |
yeah - I can see what you mean about incest, but who knows? Maybe it'll be the next rights movement! Nothing ever sways the religious zealots, what we have to hope is that the under-educated followers of these fanatics will catch a glimpse of the turth - that homosexuality is neither a threat nor a perversion.
Pretty much they're saying "all signs point to yes" for homosexuality being based in genetics, but we can't tell you for sure right now, and we're not sure we ever should. They say that even though you could prove that homosexuality is based in genetics, that will not be sufficient evidence to give us social equality.
And something don't really like about this article is that for the most part it relies on a sexual dichotomy: homosexual, heterosexual. The problem with most of the studies cited is that they leave out any reference to bisexuality and hardly give evidence to how one could be bisexual (except for one study).
yeah, I know it misses out bisexuality, but I think it's long enough as is, without covering that too. I did look for things on bisexuality and biology but didn't find anything anywhere near as comprehensive as this.
nono, I wasn't disappointed that they didn't cover bisexuality, because they did (though only slightly). I was trying instead to say that I'm disinclined to take some of the studies seriously because they don't take into accout bisexuality. A scientific study on what makes a person have a certain sexual orientation has to be able to explain bisexuality, because it obviously exists.
ah. yeah, I see what you're saying.
Thank you for posting this. I found it to be incredibly informative and thought-provoking, if time-consuming (and even at times a somewhat difficult read). Do you mind if I link this post?
this just furthers my belief that being homosexual is in our genes. but since genetics is just in the beggining stages WHO KNOW. im not really sure on my opinion though. i happen to believe that there are make things that make homosexuals. whther it be genes or the physche. either way there is no reason for the amount of UNCONSTITUTIONAL discrimination going on in this country. the debate over gaymarriage itself says that this country does not take its own writings seriously.
|Date:||June 20th, 2004 06:42 am (UTC)|| |
Re: who knows?
yeah, I agree. The thing that really worries me is that any conclusive evidence to a genetic basis could lead to pre-natal tests for it with a view to abortion or to a search for a 'cure'. Let's hope the medical profession keep their integrity on this one.
|Date:||June 20th, 2004 02:43 pm (UTC)|| |
Re: who knows?
i agree. i think thats just what the discovery could lead to. kind of a scary thought