Is gayness a disease?

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olde drunk said:
Ok, so it is an harmonal imbalance. what triggered the imbalance within the body? everything goes back to our genes. a pre-disposition, in my opinion, is not the same as being genetically male or female. to me a predisposion is more of a tendency. much like being suseptible to alchohol. some drink and walk away, some want to drink and never stop.

sorry for my prior outburst. one of my best friends is gay and i have seen the burden he carries. it is a shame that society is unwilling to accept homosexuality as natural.

love&peace,
olde drunk
An imbalance in estrogen or testosterone is a pefectly valid theory which I'm willing to entertain. However you can't discount the social impact that comes with being gay. Or the traumatic experiences of people who didn't consider themselves gay prior to those experiences. It may be that it's a combination of variables, or that there are gentically gay people AND socially gay people. The jury's still out last I checked.

I would also want to point out a misconception that you seem to have. Just because I believe that being gay comes from social influences, doesn't mean that I'm homophobic, or against homosexuality. I think that's a stigma that's attached to anyone who thinks homosexuality isn't genetic. It may or may not be a correct assumption, but in my case, it's not. If it is a social behavior, it doesn't mean that it's a wrong behavior. We as human being set the bar for right and wrong. Right and wrong is only a matter of perception.
 
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arildno

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Zantra:
Do you think that it is necessarily TRAUMATIC experiences which causes "social gayness"?
 

chroot

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Zantra said:
So now you're presuming to tell someone they are gay, weather they believe it or not? Interesting. I may be gay, and not even know it! Maybe we're all gay and just in denial? There I go "sweeping" again.. hehe
No. I meant that there are many people who feel internally that they are homosexual, yet suppress it and behave as ("claim to be") heterosexuals.
I believe in the past, the majority of studies presented turned out to be funded by right wing fundamentalist groups or organizations with religious affilations... hardly what I'd call objective- so if that's you're evidence, then just paint me a hardcore skeptic.
This might be true, but I don't know. I'll be the first to admit that I am not a social scientist, and I do not know who funded which papers. I think you're offering it just as an attempt to discredit all such studies, since they seem to uniformly disagree with you.

All I said is that the studies I know, such as the brain-morphology study, indicate that there is at least some kind of physiological difference between homosexuals and heterosexuals. It seems logical (though not certain) that social interactions do not change brain morphology. If this evidence is valid, it would indicate that homosexuality is not entirely societal, which was your initial assertion to which I objected.
'd assume you'd require equally stringent proof from my that it's a social behavior, so I expect no less.
I don't believe there is such thing as "stringent proof" in social science. Please refrain from assuming what I mean, and then attacking strawmen.
Bottom line is that MRI's can be miread, or interpreted in many different ways, and it would be a small task for someone to say "oh it means this".
This is true of just about every scientific experiment. It does not inherently discredit the value of scientific experiments.
I didn't the topic was already set in stone.
You made a strong statement that indicated you, in fact, did think it was set in stone: "Sigh... It's a social issue, not a genetic one." If you'd like to retract that statement in light of your further consideration, go ahead.

- Warren
 
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The "Crime Against Nature"
Sodomy has been stigmatized for century upon century, and in many cultures across the world and through time, mostly seeking to stigmatize relationships between members of the same sex. Almost invariably, when it is criminalized, those who criminalize it (or would do so) refer to it as the "crime against nature" or the "sin against nature." The presumption is that homosexual behavior is a perversion, and a uniquely human perversion, engaged in as the result of what is presumed to be a learned attraction to members of the same sex.
There's only one problem with that assumption: None of it is true.
http://www.bidstrup.com/sodomy.htm
 
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arildno said:
Zantra:
Do you think that it is necessarily TRAUMATIC experiences which causes "social gayness"?
I think that it is one of several characterizations that can be used, on a case by case basis. I think there are instances where the subject would characterize thier own experience as negative, leading to feelings of resentment and fear of the opposite sex. Is it the rule? no. are there documented cases where "traumatize" is a valid characterization? yes.
 
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I think I've come across in the wrong way, so let me clarify again so there's no misunderstanding. I believe that there's no solid scientific proof that being gay is either hereditary or social. I'm sure that strong arguments can be made from either viewpoint, and I myself could present a case for either argument. However I do think there are certain people here who have already made up thier minds on the topic, based on the available evidence.

Some of you approach the debate by attacking every minute fact I present, avoiding the true topic, so for future reference, please try to compile all of your points into a single post so I don't get writers cramp :yuck:

Yes I concede that homosexuality has a long history. No, I'm not homophobic or antigay. No I don't believe the topic is set in stone, No I don't think it's a "disease" and yes, I do learn towards the social aspects because genetics cannot explain every single case.

I hope that clears it up for everyone. Everyone seems so smug in thier certainty that it's a genetic issue. So if it is, fantics will doubtlessly advocate genetic engineering to "eliminate" the gay disposition. So you see, you can put a negative spin on this, weather it's a genetic OR a social issue. It swings both ways.
 

arildno

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Just to clarify on my part:
Whatever one's view on the etiology of homosexuality, it cannot be denied that
consensual, homosexual practice :
a) Is (/might be) fully consistent with an egalitarian morality
b) Provides warmth, joy and well-being for those wanting to engage in it.
Hence, however one looks at it, finding the "cause of homosexuality" should have no bearing on our MORAL evaluation of the practice.
 

russ_watters

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Zantra said:
Everyone seems so smug in thier certainty that it's a genetic issue. So if it is, fantics will doubtlessly advocate genetic engineering to "eliminate" the gay disposition. So you see, you can put a negative spin on this, weather it's a genetic OR a social issue. It swings both ways.
Just to make my position perfectly clear, I was only arguing that "gayness" (as someone else put it) is not a 'normal genetic variation' (ie blue eyes). I wasn't arguing that is anything, with the caveat that if it is harmful in any way (and, it appears clear to me that it is), it can reasonably be considered a "disease". Whether the cause is a common genetic defect, fetal environment, social pressure, or even lack of vitamins remains a very much open question.
 
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russ_watters said:
Just to make my position perfectly clear, I was only arguing that "gayness" (as someone else put it) is not a 'normal genetic variation' (ie blue eyes). I wasn't arguing that is anything, with the caveat that if it is harmful in any way (and, it appears clear to me that it is), it can reasonably be considered a "disease". Whether the cause is a common genetic defect, fetal environment, social pressure, or even lack of vitamins remains a very much open question.
http://www.bidstrup.com/sodomy.htm
As this links shows, bi- and homosexuality is very common in other species. This could not be the case if there was no advantage to this spectrum. The most likely explanation is that bisexuality gives a clear advantage in the competition for mates. So it cannot be considered a harmful disease, even if one views it only in terms of "survival of the fittest".
 
The latest evidence points to homosexuality and bisexuality being the result of exposure to elevated prenatal testosterone levels. Social psychological explanations - valid in other areas - are defunct here.

How we, as society, use this information is another issue entirely.
 
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dekoi said:
Homosexuality is strictly caused by the environment they have been raised in, and the people with the most influence on them. It is not a gene. It has been studied for years, and not one scientist found valid proof for this. Homosexuality, whether it is women or men, is either the foolish experimentation of the sex drive, or emotional harm leading to sexual confusion.
What a load of crap. If homosexuality was strictly caused by the environment, then dizygotic twins raised together should show the same incidence of homosexuality as monozygotic twins raised together. But this is not the case, as twin studies on the subject have clearly shown. The incidence among monozygotic twins is much higher than that of dizygotic twins. I love to see politics masquerading as science in a forum dedicated to physics. :confused:
 
warren you can be an ass but I'll just be one right back to you. read my last post and show me the facts- I want documented PROOF that there exists a gene that makes you gay. Anything else is pure speculation.
1993 Dean Hammer

"discovered a gene that linked to the predisposition of men being homosexual"

Twistedseer
 
Surely homosexuality is a benefit, as instead of having children of there own, if wanted, they can adopt, therefore producing a stable beneficial environment to the next generation. If they do not want children, homosexuality simply prevents unwanted offspring.
 
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Someone mentioned that Chimps have sex with one another, females, males, and SPECIFICALLY: mother and son. When it should be acceptable that human men and women have sex with their own gender because that is the case in the animal world, then why is not incest acceptable? As long as it happens between two consenting adults, for instance a 20 year old son and his 45 year old mother, it is okay? Answer that!
 
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cogito said:
What a load of crap. If homosexuality was strictly caused by the environment, then dizygotic twins raised together should show the same incidence of homosexuality as monozygotic twins raised together.
Yes. And I could promise myself on New Year's Eve: Next year I will become a lesbian! No one can do that. Yeah, let's start tomorrow! :yuck:
 
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Is stupidity a disease?
 
Thallium said:
Someone mentioned that Chimps have sex with one another, females, males, and SPECIFICALLY: mother and son. When it should be acceptable that human men and women have sex with their own gender because that is the case in the animal world, then why is not incest acceptable? As long as it happens between two consenting adults, for instance a 20 year old son and his 45 year old mother, it is okay? Answer that!
Damn good question! What would Freud say?
 

selfAdjoint

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Thallium said:
Someone mentioned that Chimps have sex with one another, females, males, and SPECIFICALLY: mother and son. When it should be acceptable that human men and women have sex with their own gender because that is the case in the animal world, then why is not incest acceptable? As long as it happens between two consenting adults, for instance a 20 year old son and his 45 year old mother, it is okay? Answer that!
OK by whom? It's their business, not mine, and I suspect the Supreme Court (in their recent privacy decision) agree with me.
 

arildno

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Besides:
This doesn't hold water as a "counter"-argument:
A fundamental premise, usually unstated, in the consenting adults view, is that BOTH parties can be regarded to be mentally SANE/having no serious mental illness impairing their RATIONAL judgment.

Now, what this means in practice for adults is that in cases of doubt, we must seek to establish a psychological profile of the person, based upon his capacity to exercise "normal" adult functions, like the capacity to initiate/hold on to friendships, being able to hold on a job, controlling temper/aggression control and so on.

It is completely without any doubt that gays are as functional adults as straights are.
That is, we cannot, in general, regard gays as mentally ill, whose actions as adults should be monitored/censored by society.

But what of your example?
Of all incest cases I've read about, there are severe psychological damages present which manifest themselves in a host of different ways.

That is, you have offered no evidence whatsoever that there exist large groups of incestuous individuals who must be regarded as mentally healthy.

Hence, the "consenting adults"-parallell doesn't hold, because there exist grave doubts as to whether such relations ever occur among mentally healthy adults.
 

selfAdjoint

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arildno said:
Hence, the "consenting adults"-parallell doesn't hold, because there exist grave doubts as to whether such relations ever occur among mentally healthy adults.
arildno, you are mixing up cases of adult on child incest, which of course can result in mental handicaps for the child in later life, with the case that was brought up and that I was discussing, of two adults who, not having had a prior history of incest, decide to practice it. I see no reason to presume they are less than fully competent.

As for the frequency of such encounters, we don't know it, and it's really irrelevant. How ever many there are, it's still those adults' own affair.
 

arildno

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I'm not mixing up!
I am demanding evidence for the existence of mentally healthy adults who choose to involve themselves i.

The frequency is deeply relevant, because if it can be shown that the vast majority of such encounters are coupled with severe mental illness (and nothing we have suggest otherwise), we are fully entitled to regard these relationships as problematic.

It does not follow from this, of course,(and I haven't stated that anywhere), that GIVEN an individual case of fully consensual relationship between mentally healthy adults, intervention/prevention should occur.

What fully competent adults do, is their own affair, if competence is lacking, not necessarily any longer.

We DO have loads of evidence which show that gays are healthy, consenting adults; due to this fact, we cannot, in general, conclude that gay relationships are inferior to straight relationships.

As long as there exist no evidence whatsoever to the contrary, we are fully entitled to regard incestuous relationships as inferior/(more problematic than) to non-incestuous relationships.
 
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Homosexuality is very obviously biochemical, a result of genetics, it's quite normal and very widespread. Why make such a fuss over so minor an aspect of human nature? If I sometimes prefer a girlfriend to my husband or he has a crush on one of the guys, so what? Perhaps I'll decide a crewcut, sweatshirt and jeans. Or he may enjoy shaving his legs, doing his nails and donning a really super posh frock and heels. Wow! Cute! Hey, I might like that. Gosh, all the labels ... all the push for normal ... I mean, like, hello, we're all on the same distribution curve. Get a life!
 
arildno said:
I'm not mixing up!
I am demanding evidence for the existence of mentally healthy adults who choose to involve themselves i.
Calm down. You are embarrassing yourself.

arildno said:
The frequency is deeply relevant, because if it can be shown that the vast majority of such encounters are coupled with severe mental illness (and nothing we have suggest otherwise), we are fully entitled to regard these relationships as problematic.
Maybe only the problematic cases get to be reported, whereas the majority of cases continue without a murmer.

arildno said:
What fully competent adults do, is their own affair, if competence is lacking, not necessarily any longer.
What? Only fully competent people can have sex? Darn!!! Gnnn!!!!

arildno said:
As long as there exist no evidence whatsoever to the contrary, we are fully entitled to regard incestuous relationships as inferior/(more problematic than) to non-incestuous relationships.
How are you going to provide counter-instances? Put an ad in the paper seeking people who are having "raunchy yet fully competent relationships with a parent" to turn up for a photoshoot?
 
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the number 42 said:
What? Only fully competent people can have sex? Darn!!! Gnnn!!!!
Damn. I'm screwed, then.
 
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I don't have enough free time to read through this thread, but could homosexuality be a result of our ever-increasing population? Could this be a way for mother nature to monitor our population on Earth and prevent it from becoming overly hazardous?

To me, since 10 years ago more people are "coming out" and saying they are homosexuals than before. Despite the increasing social acceptability of homosexuality, I believe that it is also increasing because people choose to be gay.

Could homosexuality only have developed due to our species' advanced brains?

I dunno if anyone has addressed this or not, if so a link would be superb :)
 

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