Why are humans anti-gay?

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  • #1
drankin
Is it a primal instinctive preference to insure the progression of the species? Or is it strictly a social/cultural bias?
 

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  • #2
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Is it a primal instinctive preference to insure the progression of the species? Or is it strictly a social/cultural bias?

Social bias most likely.
 
  • #3
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Oviously there are libraries filled about this subject. Maybe google "homophobia"

Some reading material.
 
  • #4
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Is it a primal instinctive preference to insure the progression of the species? Or is it strictly a social/cultural bias?

Judging by the prevalence of homosexuality in the Roman empire, I'd say it's social/cultural.
 
  • #5
Evo
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Judging by the prevalence of homosexuality in the Roman empire, I'd say it's social/cultural.
It was also prevalent in Celtic societies.
 
  • #6
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Interesting question. I'm sure there are many differing opinions concerning why most members of our species are so afraid of homosexuality.

One thing that everyone must agree upon, however, is that, biologically speaking, homosexuality is incapable of perpetuating the species.

Then the question I ask is - "Are we simply biological beings? Is our only directive to increase in number to the best of our ability - as a species? Or, are we something more?"

It seems to me that humans owe it to nothing but ourselves to continue to exist. If we we didn't exist as a species, it would obviously greatly affect biodiversity. Interestingly though, we are historically famous for our negative impact on biodiversity. What's certain is that from our perspective, humans not being around couldn't matter, because, well, there wouldn't be anyone to have a perspective concerning our un-existence. Life on Earth would go on, or it might stop. It WILL eventually stop - at least life dependent on this Universe as a home.

I say "Live and let live". There seem to be too many of our species as it stands anyway, so if some humans want to voluntarily remove themselves from the gene jungle - more power to them.
 
  • #7
arildno
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Judging by the prevalence of homosexuality in the Roman empire, I'd say it's social/cultural.
Eeh, no.
Homosexuality in general was not tolerated in Rome.

What was prevalent in Rome, and in Greece for that matter, was hyper-machismo, where to be the penitrator was infinitely better than being the penetrated.

In fact, the penetrator asserted his social superiority over the penetrated by penetrating him (or her).

Some of the same type of machismo can still be found in Middle Eastern countries, and Latin America, where "smooth boys" can work equally well as a female for male sexual gratification.

These patterns of behaviour can hardly be regarded as "tolerant" of homosexuality as such, although some genuine homosexuals can find here a culture more congenial to their appetites than within a generally homophobic culture.

Other homosexuals will be brutally repressed within such hyper-machismo cultures, for example the group of soft, effeminate "smooth boys" mentioned above, who must tolerate to be abused sexually in order to maintain a marginal position of toleration within their own society.
 
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  • #8
DaveC426913
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I'm sure there are many differing opinions concerning why most members of our species are so afraid of homosexuality.
Most?? Who said most? Reference please.

One thing that everyone must agree upon, however, is that, biologically speaking, homosexuality is incapable of perpetuating the species.
You miss the point. Perpetuating is not the only factor. Homosexuaility has been shown to arise in animal societies in over-populated conditions. It can be argued that keeping everyone from fighting each other to extinction over scarcity of mates is one way of perpetuating the species.
 
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Most?? Who said most? Reference please.

I'm sorry - after I wrote that I realized I should definitely have given it a "To the best of my approximation", which is based on my experience and observation only.

You miss the point. Perpetuating is not the only factor. Homosexuaility has been shown to arise in animal societies in over-populated conditions. It can be argued that keeping everyone from fighting each other to extinction over scarcity of mates is one way of perpetuating the species.

I thought I articulated this point as well - but apparently not well enough. Of course, I posed the issue of perpetuation of our species as a question left for thinking. I feel like we have similar thoughts on this subject, though. With respect, I feel that the idea of fighting "to extinction" over mates is in the realm of hyperbole. Scarcity of mates CAN act as a great biological limiting agent and reduction method. I personally don't find anything wrong with that thought, in the same vein as my "If we're not around, we can't be upset about not being around. Because we Are Not", or "we are naught." :)
 
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  • #10
DaveC426913
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I'm sorry - after I wrote that I realized I should definitely have given it a "To the best of my approximation", which is based on my experience and observation only.
Well, this is a situation where it would behoove one to get the facts before drawing a conclusion; otherwise one is just blowin' smoke.

I thought I articulated this point as well - but apparently not well enough. Of course, I posed the issue of perpetuation of our species as a question left for thinking. I feel like we have similar thoughts on this subject, though. With respect, I feel that the idea of fighting "to extinction" over mates is in the realm of hyperbole. Scarcity of mates CAN act as a great biological limiting agent and reduction method. I personally don't find anything wrong with that thought, in the same vein as my "If we're not around, we can't be upset about not being around. Because we Are Not", or "we are naught." :)
I'm not sure if you're agreeing with me.

I'm simply making the point that 'breeding as much as possible' is a simplistic view of stability in a species. There are multiple roles to be played in species survival; one role involves members not producing offspring (though they may still need mates and a sexual outlet).

Another (less contentious) role for example is family members too old to breed. They help the species survive whether or not they have (or had) their own offspring.
 
  • #11
Almost all cultures have been patriarchal. Cultures in general tend to have a "sissyphobia", and this could possibly stem from drives in men that would be useful during fathering; encouraging their sons to live up to masculine ideals that are not only useful for attracting women, but in learning skill and training strength to defend their societies, and thus their genes and their relatives genes. Many cultures of the past, and many tribes today practice very macho rites of passage for their male youths, hypothetically due to this effect.

I made another thread on this specifically focusing on gender norms. Homophobia may just be a small part of our larger fear of effeminacy in males (and masculinity to a seemingly lesser extent in females). I don't think this fear or drive can be confined as cultural, because culture is predicated on biology to begin with. Perhaps hard to unravel webs of different interacting factors, but the sheer continuity of these ideals across cultures with little or no contact suggests a biological origin, perhaps, unfortunately due to the success of the strategy.

Again, my hypothesis is this: men require their sons to live up to successful ideals, and women also require their daughters to live up to successful ideals that economically balance against the male specializations (in pre-modern societies), so many of us contain natural prejudices against breaking gender norms (which exhibit emergent cultural specifics from a set of cross-cultural bases - the example of Rome is a good one).

I'm not sure of the best way to test this hypothesis, but one way I can think of is to observe what brain areas light up when people view images of cross-gender and gender non-conformist people. It would be interesting to see how even the most socially liberal person's brain reacts.

Fear over gender normality and possibly as a consequence, homosexuality, is so widespread and irrational that it superficially seems clear to be biological in origin. However, certain cultures are exceptions, having third genders, such as Thai perception of their existing a "second kind of woman". It would be interesting to see how these fit in, and there certainly needs to be more concrete data on the way the brain perceives gender, before there is an explanatory theory.
 
  • #12
DaveC426913
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Almost all cultures have been patriarchal.

Well the African/black culture is traditionally matriarchical, so your hypotheses should be pretty testable/falsifiable...
 
  • #13
Ivan Seeking
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Is it a primal instinctive preference to insure the progression of the species? Or is it strictly a social/cultural bias?

Just as I believe some people are born with homosexual desires, I believe the majority of us are born without them.

I don't see how anyone can argue that people are born gay but not straight. Assuming that sexual preference is biological, the rejection of the minority is generally to be expected - biological.
 
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  • #14
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"Why are humans anti-gay?"

The premise is false. Humans are pro-gay, explaining how a non-procreative niche has been a viable subset.
 
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  • #15
arildno
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Well the African/black culture is traditionally matriarchical
No, it is not.

Where did you get that idea from???
 
  • #16
DaveC426913
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No, it is not.

Where did you get that idea from???

Hm. There are other references to it but as one example, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black_matriarchy" [Broken] "This ideology depicted traditional black American households as being dominated and controlled by outspoken and emasculating women."

It seems it have been a popular belief in earlier decades but has apparently been debunked as a myth.

But I thought it was more than just a personality thing; I thought ownership of property was actually via the woman.

I withdraw my assertion until such time as I can gather some more substantial facts to back it up.
 
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  • #17
arildno
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Hi, Dave!
Considering the importance of tribal structures in Africa in organizing society, I expect there will a strong variability in the many cultures that comprise it.

I vaguely recall something about matrilineal descent-reckoning being quite widespread in Africa, but that hardly shows any predilection towards matriarchy.

Instead, it seems to be just an eminently rational principle for kinship accounting, since we are more certain of who our fore-mothers were than forefathers..
 
  • #18
arildno
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The following article, by Martin Sjöstedt at the university at Gothenburg might be of interest concerning property rights in sub-saharan africa.
"Land Policies and Property Rights in sub-Saharan Africa":
http://www.allacademic.com//meta/p_mla_apa_research_citation/1/7/8/7/9/pages178796/p178796-1.php [Broken]
 
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  • #19
Just as I believe some people are born with homosexual desires, I believe the majority of us are born without them.

I don't see how anyone can argue that people are born gay but not straight. Assuming that sexual preference is biological, the rejection of the minority is generally to be expected - biological.

Assuming this, would that exclude any possibility of social/cultural/psychological influences on an individual's sexual preferences?
 
  • #20
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Because people have a greater responsibility than their own selves.
Actions, habits, lives, have a personal and interpersonal cost, but they also have a societal cost.
Homosexuality causes a bit of friction by challenging norms, and also, if a good specimen is gay, they're less likely to pass on their genes, which is bad for the gene pool/society.
 
  • #21
DaveC426913
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Because people have a greater responsibility than their own selves.
Actions, habits, lives, have a personal and interpersonal cost, but they also have a societal cost.
Homosexuality causes a bit of friction by challenging norms,
Again, an overly-simplistic view of social species. There is more to a species' success than merely breeding like rabbits.

and also, if a good specimen is gay, they're less likely to pass on their genes, which is bad for the gene pool/society.

Note that this is an argument for the case of homosexuality as a viable trait, not against.

As you say, logically, since homosexuals do not pass on their genes as directly as heteros, the trait should be quite quickly bred out. Yet empirical evidence shows it is not.

That means, ipso facto, that it is a trait that is serving some evolutionary advantage - for the good of the species.
 
  • #22
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As you say, logically, since homosexuals do not pass on their genes as directly as heteros, the trait should be quite quickly bred out. Yet empirical evidence shows it is not.

That means, ipso facto, that it is a trait that is serving some evolutionary advantage - for the good of the species.



1. It is not uncommon for homosexuals to sire offspring. their reproductive function works just fine. I believe that many will agree that homosexuality is a misnomer in the animal kingdom, and rather bisexuality is the correct term (i.e mounting everything that moves and looks your species for sex). Humans are a different, but even with humans, a great deal of homosexuals will still procreate.

2. You have to consider that even grossly maladaptive alleles (read: deadly) still survive in the human gene pool. Sickle cell anemia, Huntington disease, whatever. A maladaptive trait is not guaranteed to be weed out in the time frame we had so far.
 
  • #23
DaveC426913
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I believe that many will agree that homosexuality is a misnomer in the animal kingdom, and rather bisexuality is the correct term (i.e mounting everything that moves and looks your species for sex). Humans are a different,
Nope. Don't agree.

It's not humans; it's social animals. eg. Rats will engage in homosexual behaviour as a way of getting along in a overpopulated environment. It's not about being horny and jumping on anything; it's about getting their sexual needs met without having the community kill itself competing for females.

1. It is not uncommon for homosexuals to sire offspring. their reproductive function works just fine.
...a great deal of homosexuals will still procreate.

Regardless, it is a trait (if we look at it simplistically) that is highly counterproductive to propogating itself. It should have been bred out long ago, if it were a simple case.

2. You have to consider that even grossly maladaptive alleles (read: deadly) still survive in the human gene pool. Sickle cell anemia, Huntington disease, whatever.

A maladaptive trait is not guaranteed to be weed out in the time frame we had so far.


What "time frame we had so far"? The dawn of sexual reproduction was, like, a billion years ago.
 
  • #24
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What "time frame we had so far"? Since the dawn of sexual reproduction? That's, like, a billion years.

Only if you claim that in animal kingdom homosexual animals do not reproduce. As I said, in fact THEY DO. They engage in bisexual relations, not homosexual alone.

Humans homosexual reproduce too many times, so they pass genes directly.


Regardless, it is a trait (if we look at it simplistically) that is highly counterproductive to propogating itself. It should have been bred out long ago, if it were a simple case.

That never occurred to me. It's not very (if at all ) maladaptive. You are still perfectly able to reproduce.
 

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