Is homosexuality simply a part of evolution?

92 posts / 0 new

Comments

I would suggest that you could have 10 homosexuals and there may be 10 different etiologies of how they came to be. Separate, dichotomous, or various points along the continuum. Furthermore I don't think that it matters. Genetic, genetic predisposition, birth order, hormones, choice, nature/nurture.....when it comes down to it, does it really matter the hows and whys? Say that at some point there was a test developed to determine if one was "homosexual". What if a person who "flunked" or "passed" the test as not being homosexual still preferred the company of same sex partners, would they be ostracized and set up for special attention? Gets tricky fast.

People in power have always used/misused religion to control segments of the population. I don't see that changing anytime soon.

As far as dogs go, my take is that it isn't the breed so much as the individual dog. For the past 36 years I have vacillated between being owned by GSD or Rottweilers (Sometimes both at the same time) with many several mixed breeds from the shelter thrown in the mix. Rottweilers have the strongest bite on record although can be some of the most mellow and reliable dogs to own. Much like Pit Bulls or any other breed of dog. My current Rott (Thor) and my previous Rott (Thor) both worked as therapy dogs in different hospitals I worked at. Both are Schutzhund III as well.

Raising them correctly, emphasis on socialization, always positive teaching/training, probably had more impact on their behavior than anything they may have been bred for in the past.

Interestingly, the more humans interfere in the breeding of dogs, the unhealthier said breed becomes.

norske's picture
norske
Joined:
Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

In my opinion this is exactly why GOD inspired man to create bedroom doors.

bonnie
Joined:
Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

What Ulysses believes is that Watson and Crick were awarded the Nobel Prize for identifying the double spiral helix, and that they deserved it. He also believes that their discovery was correctly lauded as providing the basic template for all human genetics, and that the Human Genome Project is now finished cataloguing all basic combinations and variations of human genes and DNA. Now that cataloguing is complete, the puzzle of human variability, based on all possible combinations, is being worked out, one gene at a time. Once it's done, it will be definitive. After a point, when all possible combinations are catalogued, it will automatically become definitive to describe everything outside of the completed puzzle as "mutations." Ulysses believes that mutations are exceptions, and that no matter what subject one is speaking about, including human genetics, exceptions do not disprove rules! He also believes that with the exception of environmental and evolutionary influences, the template is immutable and can be engineered accordingly, with confidence, and it will be.

Ulysses also has seen a number of people, both in science and other fields, who like to grab onto easily found exceptions to rules and established bodies of scholarship and tout those exceptions as undeniable evidence that the entire body of scholarship in a given area is wrong. Most of the time, the fact is that those exceptions were examined and dismissed for what they actually are: truly tangential considerations that, while genuine, do not bear anywhere nearly as heavily on the conclusions of established scholarship as their "discoverers" would have us believe. Nor are they often revolutionary in any way. There are, in fact, individuals who thrive on doing this repeatedly so that others will view them as intellectuals.

Ulysses believes that there is nothing particularly profound about pointing out that there are exceptions to most rules, no matter how ornately it's done.

Ulysses

Ulysses's picture
Ulysses
Joined:
Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm
Quote norske:

I would suggest that you could have 10 homosexuals and there may be 10 different etiologies of how they came to be. Separate, dichotomous, or various points along the continuum. Furthermore I don't think that it matters.

That is the point. Mitchell McElroy is asking the wrong question--and Ulysses is offering the wrong answer--when it comes to the issue of 'homosexuality' and 'genetic predisposition' and whatever is 'wrong' with it. It's asking science to answer what is basically a philosophical question--and the answer to that question depends upon your philosophy (and theology). While some don't want to approach it that way because I guess they feel like that's giving it too much leeway in addressing the answer, that is still the point--it depends upon what you think of it 'as being wrong' IS the answer. While some here don't seem to think that's 'definitive' enough, when it comes to 'what is wrong with homosexuality', that is the way to address it because 'science' will never answer 'what is wrong with homosexuality'--no matter how 'definitive' (or 'directive') they claim the 'science' to be...or 'will be'....

So, it depends upon where you want to place the sexual motive....

Quote bonnie:

In my opinion this is exactly why GOD inspired man to create bedroom doors.

...and, at least when it comes to politics and 'individual rights', that is probably the best place for it to be when it comes to the actions of two consenting adults....8^).....whether others see it as 'wrong' or not....or even how else they proclaim to 'definitively describe it'.....

Quote Ulysses:

After a point, when all possible combinations are catalogued, it will automatically become definitive to describe everything outside of the completed puzzle as "mutations." Ulysses believes that mutations are exceptions, and that no matter what subject one is speaking about, including human genetics, exceptions do not disprove rules! He also believes that with the exception of environmental and evolutionary influences, the template is immutable and can be engineered accordingly, with confidence, and it will be.

As I said, we have no explanation as to how chaos collapsed into order (which is another way of stating 'how order was created')--it actually does go against some (superficial) 'scientific priniciples of entropy' (where everything tends to disorder--unless energy is added). To believe that we can and will define that order as definitively as we like to profess and 'predict' is probably still putting more credit in proclamations that believe there are empiric answers (or directives--especially based on the trends of genetic predisposition or statistics as imposed law) to philosophical questions (like 'consciousness' only being 'the total of the inter- and intra-neuronal interactions in the brain')....and, I suspect when (and IF) they get to those empiric answers as thoroughly as they assume and so profess, they really won't find what they have been proclaiming all along.....but that doesn't prevent them to speak for everyone else and claim 'this is the only place to look'--in a rather authoritarian manner at that....

Keep the faith...

Kerry's picture
Kerry
Joined:
Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm
...Ulysses ignored every thing that I posted...

As he shall continue to do...

And when the gay gene has been identified and catalogued beyond a shadow of scientific doubt, just as accurately as the gene for red hair, perhaps he'll stop quacking. But nothing's a sure thing.

Ulysses's picture
Ulysses
Joined:
Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

As I said, Ulysses ignored everything that I posted.

Very 'impressive', Ulysses. But, the point still is that what you are saying is not scientific fact--and, despite what you say, genetic expression has shown to be not that specific or direct in every case because it depends upon where in the very intricate and complicated biochemical mechanisms that create us that particular genetic influence carries on its task (and, as I said, we already know that). And, the final point still is that even IF there is such a thing as a 'gay gene', it will still NOT answer the question 'what's wrong with homosexuality'--because that's not a scientific question...it's a philosophical question--I think the political answer in a country supposedly based on securing 'individual rights' (or, do we even know what 'securing individual rights' means anymore?) should be 'it's no one's business as long as it's behind the door to private property and it's between two consenting adults'.....but, those two consenting adults and their God (as the 'integrity binder'...)......

Kerry's picture
Kerry
Joined:
Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm
And, the final point still is that even IF there is such a thing as a 'gay gene', it will still NOT answer the question 'what's wrong with homosexuality'--because that's not a scientific question...it's a philosophical question--

I never said it would answer any such question. My hypotheses are values-neutral and based on objective physical and genetic science.

I think the political answer in a country supposedly based on securing 'individual rights' ...should be 'it's no one's business as long as it's behind the door to private property and it's between two consenting adults'.....but, those two consenting adults and their God (as the 'integrity binder'

I've never said otherwise. I fully and unequivocally support gay rights and believe that what consenting adults do in their own bedrooms is none of the state's (or the Tea Party's) business.

Ulysses's picture
Ulysses
Joined:
Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

Yet, claiming that sexual behavior is a basic biochemical mechanism that is genetically hardwired (and, therefore, beyond our control) places the sexual act in a position as if we have no ability to affect its expression--which, is somewhat demeaning to the act, itself--and to us. What is such 'freedom' in sexual expression if it's just a genetically hardwired act without choice? You seem to have not thought (or cared) about that point all along....maybe 'violence' is also so hardwired and, therefore, uncontrollable....all the way to uncontrollable nuclear destruction.....or, do you think we will find that 'violence gene' and, then, be able to 'genetically engineer it out' to our peaceful state of 'no choice' genetic expression?

And, you have made no comment on how some genetic expression is basic enough to the biochemical cascade that is gene expression to be expressed every time (like trisomy 21 and Down's Syndrome) and some just involve the equivalent of 'statistically-trended genetic markers' as in breast cancer where that genetic marker only indicates a higher incidence of breast cancer but it doesn't say every one with that marker will get breast cancer every time (and, in fact, they don't)--and where you think this supposed 'gay gene' is going to fall in that milieu with respect to how 'direct' its expression is going to be even considering what we already know about genetic expression (which, just like all statistical trends, is NOT as 'cut and dry' as you profess)--and, that's only IF we really find this proposed 'gay gene'.....any thoughts? Or, are you standing by how 'values-neutral' you say this proposed 'gay gene that has unalterable expression' supposedly is?

Kerry's picture
Kerry
Joined:
Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm
Yet, claiming that sexual behavior is a basic biochemical mechanism that is genetically hardwired (and, therefore, beyond our control) places the sexual act in a position as if we have no ability to affect its expression

If found, a gay gene will prove to be determinant of sexual orientation and preference, not behavioral expression of same. Having a gay gene will not turn people into robots.

--which, is somewhat demeaning to the act, itself--and to us.

How would anybody else having a gay gene and being sexually oriented accordingly be demeaning to you? Bisexuals may be found to have bisexual genes and choose partners of both sexes accordingly. How would that be demeaning to you?

What is such 'freedom' in sexual expression if it's just a genetically hardwired act without choice?

To what 'freedom' are you referring? Humans are hardwired for sex. If, by 'choice,' you mean you think sexual preference is a matter of choice, rather than genetic, why not just say so? You could start a new thread based on that hypothesis.

You seem to have not thought (or cared) about that point all along

Per above.

....maybe 'violence' is also so hardwired and, therefore, uncontrollable....all the way to uncontrollable nuclear destruction.....or, do you think we will find that 'violence gene' and, then, be able to 'genetically engineer it out' to our peaceful state of 'no choice' genetic expression?

Maybe. I don't know. I'm not interested in discussing the genetic bases, or lack of same, of the entire plethora of human behaviors, including a potential genetic basis for violence. Why don't you begin your own thread on it and see if anybody wants to discuss it?

And, you have made no comment on how some genetic expression is basic enough to the biochemical cascade that is gene expression to be expressed every time (like trisomy 21 and Down's Syndrome) and some just involve the equivalent of 'statistically-trended genetic markers' as in breast cancer where that genetic marker only indicates a higher incidence of breast cancer but it doesn't say every one with that marker will get breast cancer every time (and, in fact, they don't)--and where you think this supposed 'gay gene' is going to fall in that milieu with respect to how 'direct' its expression is going to be even considering what we already know about genetic expression (which, just like all statistical trends, is NOT as 'cut and dry' as you profess)

No, I haven't commented on any of that. I already know genetic expression isn't completely "cut and dried." I knew that before I made the gay gene posting. I'm just not interested in indulging your penchant for arguing that exceptions disprove rules or that we should somehow ignore scientific and statistical master trends because exceptions exist.

--and, that's only IF we really find this proposed 'gay gene'.....any thoughts?

It's never been more than a hypothesis for me. I believe it but I don't know it empirically. I hope I'll live long enough to see it proven or disproven. It would satisfy my curiosity.

Or, are you standing by how 'values-neutral' you say this proposed 'gay gene that has unalterable expression' supposedly is?

Yup. If it's found, it's empirical existence will be indisputably values-free, just as nobody disputes the existence of rocks. Sociocultural judgments and activities stemming from its existence will, unfortunately, most likely not be values-free, given human prejudices. I've stated what I think will happen if it's discovered. I still think so.

Ulysses's picture
Ulysses
Joined:
Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm
Quote Ulysses:

Having a gay gene will not turn people into robots.

Then, I'm having a hard time understanding this 'values-neutral' position you say this proposed 'gay gene' is. In this concept you are saying is the 'gay gene', is that, again, just a statistically-trended average (ie. more people with that 'genetic marker' end up being gay than don't--but that doesn't mean all people with that marker are gay), or is it a hard-wired genetic expression (ie. all the people with that genetic marker will end up being gay--and, by the way, does this 'values-neutral' gay gene expression depend at all upon the sex of the organism--in other words, are all female gays and male gays going to have the same 'gay gene marker'--or how will that be distinguished in this definitive marker expression you propose science will find)?

Quote Ulysses:

How would anybody else having a gay gene and being sexually oriented accordingly be demeaning to you?

In claiming that there is this 'gay gene marker' to explain the variances in the sexual expression of humans, you are implying that such acts are beyond our choice or our control--at least from the perspective of each individual who possesses it (just like Mitchell McElroy's Matrix video--and with similar results and variances in those with such 'possession of knowledge', otherwise). It is 'too basic (basal) an act' for conscious expression to contend with--or, on an individual basis, ever to contend with. Now (very similar to Mitchell McElroy's video), you do set up a way in which this 'gay gene' does get controlled but it's not by any conscious choice of the individual who expresses it--it's by 'genetically engineering' the supposed 'gay gene' out of existence by those who would contain this proposed knowledge of the 'gay gene' to do so. While you claim this is all 'values-neutral', what can be done with such knowledge (IF it really exists) is anything but 'values-neutral', isn't it? That is what 'statistics' is all about, isn't it? Just make everyone meet the 'value average'....by law or by genetic design.....and forget any claim on the rights of individual expression otherwise....you implicitly give such 'authority' the capacity to do that with your 'genetic engineering' argument (as Mitchell McElroy's video gives that capacity of one player to understand how the other player is acting 'subconsciously' without realizing that gives the first player a 'conscious capacity' not offered the other--therefore, an 'authoritarian control' option...).

Quote Ulysses:

To what 'freedom' are you referring? Humans are hardwired for sex. If, by 'choice,' you mean you think sexual preference is a matter of choice, rather than genetic, why not just say so? You could start a new thread based on that hypothesis.

Saying 'we' are 'hardwired for sex' and saying that 'some' are 'hardwired for gay sex' are actually two different things--one creates a 'the other' complex and also claims to describe it in 'values-neutral' terms--but, smugly suggests such knowledge can be 'genetically altered'...but, not by the individual, by those who possess that capability of 'genetic engineering'...a new form of 'authority'...and a degradation of 'freedom'....

This doesn't need a new thread--this is directly addressing your supposed 'scientific' proposition with regards to its true philosophical undertones. What you still fail to recognize is that the question you are trying to answer with a 'gay gene marker' is still better answered philosophically than scientifically despite your smug claims on its 'values-neutral' status...

Quote Ulysses:

Maybe. I don't know. I'm not interested in discussing the genetic bases, or lack of same, of the entire plethora of human behaviors, including a potential genetic basis for violence. Why don't you begin your own thread on it and see if anybody wants to discuss it?

Read above. This is directly addressing your proposition that this is a 'values-neutral' argument--which I believe it is NOT--especially in the hands of those with the capacity to 'genetically engineer' it IF it ever is really found....but, it is just another way that can impose 'statistical averages' as if that is the rightful norm for all behavior....either by authority of law--or 'genetic science'....

You don't want to discuss the 'genetic basis' of this--but, you are so sure that we will find a 'genetic basis' for this--even though we already know that some genetic expression is only a trended indication that doesn't mean every one with that 'genetic marker' will express that trait (and some genetic markers do express that trait every time--and you haven't expressed an opinion on which you think this 'gay gene' will be). Furthermore, despite your claims to the contrary, you have yet to admit that your position is just as 'faith-based' as any position--and it's NOT faith in the individual being able to guage how each is to express sexual behavior when it comes to two consenting adults as much as it is 'statistical averages' imposed as 'the norm' (in law and science)....

Quote Ulysses:

I'm just not interested in indulging your penchant for arguing that exceptions disprove rules or that we should somehow ignore scientific and statistical master trends because exceptions exist.

Again, read above--and don't be quite so smug about how 'values-neutral' you claim this 'genetic marker' will be. What you are claiming is that you have no faith in individual expression to be individually determined...and doing it by citing what you say is some kind of 'statistical authority' as if the average were the rightful norm....but, claiming it's not you doing it, of course, as you believe that a 'gay gene' will be found....

Quote Ulysses:

Yup. If it's found, it's empirical existence will be indisputably values-free, just as nobody disputes the existence of rocks. Sociocultural judgments and activities stemming from its existence will, unfortunately, most likely not be values-free, given human prejudices. I've stated what I think will happen if it's discovered. I still think so.

So, finding a genetic marker for gays, saying that's a 'values-neutral' proposition, and, then, claiming that someone will then be able to 'genetically engineer it out' is NOT a statement on 'values' to you? You've just passed off that judgment to something or someone else than yourself--would that be the 'authority' that can impose 'statistical averages' by law--and, now, according to you, by science?

This is not a scientific question--it's a philosophical one. So is the 'authority of statistical averages' imposed against 'individual rights' of all types....is this one of those individual expressions that needs 'statistical averaging' imposed on it? That's actually the question you smugly avoid in this claim on 'values-neutral' genetics.....but, with what we've talked about before, I would expect that coming from you.....where's rysl and jeffbiss on this?

Kerry's picture
Kerry
Joined:
Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm
Quote Kerry:
Quote Ulysses:

Having a gay gene will not turn people into robots.

Then, I'm having a hard time understanding this 'values-neutral' position you say this proposed 'gay gene' is. In this concept you are saying is the 'gay gene', is that, again, just a statistically-trended average (ie. more people with that 'genetic marker' end up being gay than don't--but that doesn't mean all people with that marker are gay), or is it a hard-wired genetic expression (ie. all the people with that genetic marker will end up being gay--and, by the way, does this 'values-neutral' gay gene expression depend at all upon the sex of the organism--in other words, are all female gays and male gays going to have the same 'gay gene marker'--or how will that be distinguished in this definitive marker expression you propose science will find)?

Quote Ulysses:

How would anybody else having a gay gene and being sexually oriented accordingly be demeaning to you?

In claiming that there is this 'gay gene marker' to explain the variances in the sexual expression of humans, you are implying that such acts are beyond our choice or our control--at least from the perspective of each individual who possesses it (just like Mitchell McElroy's Matrix video--and with similar results and variances in those with such 'possession of knowledge', otherwise). It is 'too basic (basal) an act' for conscious expression to contend with--or, on an individual basis, ever to contend with. Now (very similar to Mitchell McElroy's video), you do set up a way in which this 'gay gene' does get controlled but it's not by any conscious choice of the individual who expresses it--it's by 'genetically engineering' the supposed 'gay gene' out of existence by those who would contain this proposed knowledge of the 'gay gene' to do so. While you claim this is all 'values-neutral', what can be done with such knowledge (IF it really exists) is anything but 'values-neutral', isn't it? That is what 'statistics' is all about, isn't it? Just make everyone meet the 'value average'....by law or by genetic design.....and forget any claim on the rights of individual expression otherwise....you implicitly give such 'authority' the capacity to do that with your 'genetic engineering' argument (as Mitchell McElroy's video gives that capacity of one player to understand how the other player is acting 'subconsciously' without realizing that gives the first player a 'conscious capacity' not offered the other--therefore, an 'authoritarian control' option...).

Quote Ulysses:

To what 'freedom' are you referring? Humans are hardwired for sex. If, by 'choice,' you mean you think sexual preference is a matter of choice, rather than genetic, why not just say so? You could start a new thread based on that hypothesis.

Saying 'we' are 'hardwired for sex' and saying that 'some' are 'hardwired for gay sex' are actually two different things--one creates a 'the other' complex and also claims to describe it in 'values-neutral' terms--but, smugly suggests such knowledge can be 'genetically altered'...but, not by the individual, by those who possess that capability of 'genetic engineering'...a new form of 'authority'...and a degradation of 'freedom'....

This doesn't need a new thread--this is directly addressing your supposed 'scientific' proposition with regards to its true philosophical undertones. What you still fail to recognize is that the question you are trying to answer with a 'gay gene marker' is still better answered philosophically than scientifically despite your smug claims on its 'values-neutral' status...

Quote Ulysses:

Maybe. I don't know. I'm not interested in discussing the genetic bases, or lack of same, of the entire plethora of human behaviors, including a potential genetic basis for violence. Why don't you begin your own thread on it and see if anybody wants to discuss it?

Read above. This is directly addressing your proposition that this is a 'values-neutral' argument--which I believe it is NOT--especially in the hands of those with the capacity to 'genetically engineer' it IF it ever is really found....but, it is just another way that can impose 'statistical averages' as if that is the rightful norm for all behavior....either by authority of law--or 'genetic science'....

You don't want to discuss the 'genetic basis' of this--but, you are so sure that we will find a 'genetic basis' for this--even though we already know that some genetic expression is only a trended indication that doesn't mean every one with that 'genetic marker' will express that trait (and some genetic markers do express that trait every time--and you haven't expressed an opinion on which you think this 'gay gene' will be). Furthermore, despite your claims to the contrary, you have yet to admit that your position is just as 'faith-based' as any position--and it's NOT faith in the individual being able to guage how each is to express sexual behavior when it comes to two consenting adults as much as it is 'statistical averages' imposed as 'the norm' (in law and science)....

Quote Ulysses:

I'm just not interested in indulging your penchant for arguing that exceptions disprove rules or that we should somehow ignore scientific and statistical master trends because exceptions exist.

Again, read above--and don't be quite so smug about how 'values-neutral' you claim this 'genetic marker' will be. What you are claiming is that you have no faith in individual expression to be individually determined...and doing it by citing what you say is some kind of 'statistical authority' as if the average were the rightful norm....but, claiming it's not you doing it, of course, as you believe that a 'gay gene' will be found....

Quote Ulysses:

Yup. If it's found, it's empirical existence will be indisputably values-free, just as nobody disputes the existence of rocks. Sociocultural judgments and activities stemming from its existence will, unfortunately, most likely not be values-free, given human prejudices. I've stated what I think will happen if it's discovered. I still think so.

So, finding a genetic marker for gays, saying that's a 'values-neutral' proposition, and, then, claiming that someone will then be able to 'genetically engineer it out' is NOT a statement on 'values' to you? You've just passed off that judgment to something or someone else than yourself--would that be the 'authority' that can impose 'statistical averages' by law--and, now, according to you, by science?

This is not a scientific question--it's a philosophical one. So is the 'authority of statistical averages' imposed against 'individual rights' of all types....is this one of those individual expressions that needs 'statistical averaging' imposed on it? That's actually the question you smugly avoid in this claim on 'values-neutral' genetics.....but, with what we've talked about before, I would expect that coming from you.....where's rysl and jeffbiss on this?

Take your meds.

Ulysses's picture
Ulysses
Joined:
Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm
Quote Ulysses:

Take your meds.

You're a smug, condescending ass aren't you, Ulysses. But, I can follow an argument and I do know internal inconsistencies when I see it--a classic trait of hypocrites. You said this in your first post (#48) on this board:

I believe that as various genes which make up humans are isolated and identified, science will prove that homosexuality is purely "nature," with "nurture" as merely a tangential concern. In other words, it will be acknowledged that a person's DNA and genetics determine whether he/she is gay.

I would read that, in your post here, you gloat (as usual for you) that 'homosexual behavior' is 'all nature' in being 'genetically determined'--with 'nurture' holding little influence (and you claim that's a 'value-neutral position'--but, then, so is all science--what's done with it if it actually is true is anything but 'value-neutral'--that's why this is ultimately a philosophical question from the start). And, you act like you know this 'gay gene' proposition as if a fact (just like all your 'statistical averaging imposed as law' propositions--this just as inaccurate a proposal as if 'fact' in science even judging by what we already know about 'genetic expression' as its rather contradictory statement in law as if 'fact' to the 'statistical averaging imposed as law' position--in this case, 'genetic condition imposed as unchangeable fact' position is absent its 'statistical trending' that most genetic expression actually has--what you claim in 'fact' doesn't seem to address 'statistical trends' either way....one, in law, where 'statistics are facts', the other, in science, where 'genetic expression is a fact' without its proven 'statistical trends' in many cases--either way, you carry a subtle but quite influential lie in those statements....).

But, then, as you have yet to comment on, this 'gay gene expressed as fact in nature and unchangeable by nurture' (or any environmental influence) 'hardwires' sexual behavior beyond any form of conscious control, doesn't it? (That, of course, is for the individual who possesses this 'gay gene'--but, just like Mitchell McElroy's Matrix example, someone else who knows that information can use it, otherwise, consciously--like 'genetically engineering out the gay gene'--again, proving it is a philosophical question and not a scientific one). I have been trying to point that out to you--and you sidestep it all the way as your original post claimed you to 'believe' this will all be 'nature' and no 'nurture'--but, when pressed on qualifying your remarks (again, all pure conjecture at this time), you have nothing to say to qualify such a 'belief' other than to smuggly condescend my asking it.....

Then, your later posts seem to contradict your original statement because there (#59) you state this:

I already know genetic expression isn't completely "cut and dried."

Then, what is it? If it isn't 'completely cut and dried', does that mean that 'nurture' (or any environmental influence) does have a part in the expression of this 'gay gene' or not? And, since all you have to say about the 'gay gene' is purely conjecture, you never directly responded to the question as to whether when (and IF) this supposed 'gay gene' were found, would it likely be as definitive in its expression as if Down's Syndrome and trisomy 21 or just a statistically-averaged trend that suggests a higher incidence of expression but certainly not in every case that has that 'statistically-trended genetic marker' as in breast cancer--and certainly not as 'cut and dried' as you implied with your comments on it all being 'nature' with no 'nurture' in your first post on this thread. And, then, as if to somehow secure your position, you who have given yourself the capacity to claim 'all this will be in the genes', say this about genetics in that same above post (#59):

Maybe. I don't know. I'm not interested in discussing the genetic bases, or lack of same, of the entire plethora of human behaviors,....

And, then, all you have to say about all of this is that 'I' need my meds. And, you need a lesson in discussing with integrity.....but, then, hypocrites hardly ever actually see that......especially smart-assed condescending ones such as yourself. Maybe rysl and jeffbiss can make more of the rightful place of this 'statistical averaging' imposed as law and 'science'....you apparently can't....

Good day....

Kerry's picture
Kerry
Joined:
Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

This argument has degenerated into personal exchange, and I would suggest that it is in stalemate.

Ulysses, the problem with your scientific interest in the "gay gene" and your claim that it is not part of a homophobic agenda is that the driving interest in "the cause" has been to "prevent" or "cure" something negative. There is very little interest in the cause of homosexuality by those who see it as a normal human variation on human sexuality with very little to no other concomitant differences from the rest of humanity.

The idea that some Christic Conservative Homophobe Conversion "ministry" would not take this science and try to apply it to their perverse agenda is not hard to get. How many parents will want to prevent their child from having to go through the cultural negativity of being gay? I see nothing of value coming from this knowledge. As pure science, i would not be opposed to understanding anything; but this issue is hardly defined by science now.

DRC's picture
DRC
Joined:
Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm
The idea that some Christic Conservative Homophobe Conversion "ministry" would not take this science and try to apply it to their perverse agenda is not hard to get.

Doubtful, because the religious nuts are against most forms of bioscience, including stem cell research. They're against science itself, whenever it proves their preconceived notions to be incorrect.

How many parents will want to prevent their child from having to go through the cultural negativity of being gay?

Probably a very large number. No parent wants their children to be subjected to sociocultural abuse of any kind. Your rhetorical question would be on target if we were living in the sunlit uplands of cultural enlightenment; regrettably, we're not.

I see nothing of value coming from this knowledge. As pure science, i would not be opposed to understanding anything; but this issue is hardly defined by science now.

As I've stated, if it's finally established as scientifically factual, the same arguments against discrimination can then be made, i.e., being gay is no different than having a particular skin color, and therefore, it's wrong to discriminate. This would make for a stronger anti-discrimination argument than simply saying, "Discrimination is wrong." That would be so because it's more effective to say that people shouldn't be discriminated against for who they are rather than mere conceptual arguments against discrimination.

We'll see what the future holds (if we're lucky).

Ulysses's picture
Ulysses
Joined:
Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

A stalemate in an argument implies there is no longer a valid point of distinction in the argument--which I don't think is the case. If this is a stalemate, I think it's been stalemated due to a particular type of stonewalling of the issue that disregards the specifics considered and the nuances involved--skewed by personal slurs.

Quote DRC:

As pure science, i would not be opposed to understanding anything; but this issue is hardly defined by science now.

As I've said, if there is anything wrong with homosexuality, science won't handle it. Describing the issues in a pseudo-'value-neutral' basis as if science (when that is even pure conjecture that still won't solve the issue but, adds yet another way to authorize impositions against it) won't either.

Quote Ulysses:

As I've stated, if it's finally established as scientifically factual, the same arguments against discrimination can then be made, i.e., being gay is no different than having a particular skin color, and therefore, it's wrong to discriminate.

'Being gay is no different than having a particular skin color' may sound objective--but its claim on objectivity is met with an assumed accusation that the sexual function of humans is no different than the 'natural order' of hair color--in other words, it's a basal act in 'nature' that has no capacity for personal choice in its expression than the 'natural order' of taking a shit. It's inaccurate to what really happens in the environmental interchange of genetic code and organism expression and, as humans, it's demeaning to the act of sexual intercourse between each other when it's explained as being something without choice or will--it's all 'just in the genes'.... and, again, 'objectifying the sexual act' as if it is a 'inevitable genetically coded function' (as hair color) doesn't really answer or remove the question of whether 'homosexuality is wrong or not'--it just (authoritatively) places its management in the hands of those that can understand and/or alter such genetically coded messages and removes any possible individual variance based on the choice of the individual in possession of these 'genetic traits'...further undermining any real purpose or cause to 'individual rights'....

Quote Ulysses:

This would make for a stronger anti-discrimination argument than simply saying, "Discrimination is wrong."

No it wouldn't. Science cannot answer whether an issue is 'right' or 'wrong'--it can only describe it. And, classifying it as 'just a genetic trait' doesn't remove that description--all that now has to be added is that 'the authorities' believe it best to 'avoid the trait of homosexuality so genetically predisposed' as if it were a congenital disease that does do the organism harm....but, you don't seem to want to address that even as you claimed that that was one of the ways this supposed 'gay gene' could be handled (when and IF it is found) in the future (by, of course, extracting it out of the gene pool in this all-powerful assumption you are claiming 'genetic engineering' will become).....or, you don't want to qualify how finding this 'gay gene' is going to change that to me--and I see that more so because you would rather stonewall any issue brought up by me than agree to it...or discuss it.....but, then, that is how self-righteous condescending hypocrites such as yourself usually function when waving their banners and not actually thinking about what is being said....even what they are saying....

Kerry's picture
Kerry
Joined:
Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm
Quote Kerry:

A stalemate in an argument implies there is no longer a valid point of distinction in the argument--which I don't think is the case. If this is a stalemate, I think it's been stalemated due to a particular type of stonewalling of the issue that disregards the specifics considered and the nuances involved--skewed by personal slurs.

Quote DRC:

As pure science, i would not be opposed to understanding anything; but this issue is hardly defined by science now.

As I've said, if there is anything wrong with homosexuality, science won't handle it. Describing the issues in a pseudo-'value-neutral' basis as if science (when that is even pure conjecture that still won't solve the issue but, adds yet another way to authorize impositions against it) won't either.

Quote Ulysses:

As I've stated, if it's finally established as scientifically factual, the same arguments against discrimination can then be made, i.e., being gay is no different than having a particular skin color, and therefore, it's wrong to discriminate.

'Being gay is no different than having a particular skin color' may sound objective--but its claim on objectivity is met with an assumed accusation that the sexual function of humans is no different than the 'natural order' of hair color--in other words, it's a basal act in 'nature' that has no capacity for personal choice in its expression than the 'natural order' of taking a shit. It's inaccurate to what really happens in the environmental interchange of genetic code and organism expression and, as humans, it's demeaning to the act of sexual intercourse between each other when it's explained as being something without choice or will--it's all 'just in the genes'.... and, again, 'objectifying the sexual act' as if it is a 'inevitable genetically coded function' (as hair color) doesn't really answer or remove the question of whether 'homosexuality is wrong or not'--it just (authoritatively) places its management in the hands of those that can understand and/or alter such genetically coded messages and removes any possible individual variance based on the choice of the individual in possession of these 'genetic traits'...further undermining any real purpose or cause to 'individual rights'....

Quote Ulysses:

This would make for a stronger anti-discrimination argument than simply saying, "Discrimination is wrong."

No it wouldn't. Science cannot answer whether an issue is 'right' or 'wrong'--it can only describe it. And, classifying it as 'just a genetic trait' doesn't remove that description--all that now has to be added is that 'the authorities' believe it best to 'avoid the trait of homosexuality so genetically predisposed' as if it were a congenital disease that does do the organism harm....but, you don't seem to want to address that even as you claimed that that was one of the ways this supposed 'gay gene' could be handled (when and IF it is found) in the future (by, of course, extracting it out of the gene pool in this all-powerful assumption you are claiming 'genetic engineering' will become).....or, you don't want to qualify how finding this 'gay gene' is going to change that to me--and I see that more so because you would rather stonewall any issue brought up by me than agree to it...or discuss it.....but, then, that is how self-righteous condescending hypocrites such as yourself usually function when waving their banners and not actually thinking about what is being said....even what they are saying....

Oh, Golly!

Ulysses's picture
Ulysses
Joined:
Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm
Quote Ulysses:

Oh, Golly!

Is that your final answer? Or, do you have more to add about how you believe genetic coding will define homosexuality? How you believe that science addresses 'right and wrong' questions? How you believe that such 'value-neutral' science can or cannot still be used by those with the knowledge to do so? How you don't believe this is a philosophical and not a scientific question when it comes to 'what is wrong with homosexuality'?

By the way, why won't there be a 'heterorsexual gene'--and do you think that expression will be just as definite as this supposed 'homosexual gene'?

Kerry's picture
Kerry
Joined:
Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

Kerry,

It is exasperating to watch as you seem to have no idea about genetics and want to somehow maintain homosexuality as a choice to maintain individuality.

Science can answer many questions in a value-neutral way, that allows one to determine for themselves whether homosexuality is "wrong", just like whether cancer is "wrong".

rysl's picture
rysl
Joined:
Aug. 10, 2010 10:30 am

You know, rysl, I've quoted more sources than you or Ulysses. I've even made the contrasting genetic expressions of the definitive trisomy 21 and Down's Syndrome (where everyone with it gets the trait) and the statistically trended genetic marker for breast cancer (where no where near everyone with it gets the trait)--both valid descriptions of genetic expression (but, that appears hard for those who can't tell a statistical trend from a fact apart, it appears). Do you disagree with that comparison and assessment, rysl? If so, please explain yourself. Then, I have asked Ulysses (or anyone that wants to) to tell me which one they think that this supposed 'gay gene' will be--a definitive expression every time or just a statistically trended average? Do you understand the difference between that? Then, in comparison, I've finally asked Ulysses if there is a 'heterosexual gene'--and how definitive is that?

I'm afraid it is you and Ulysses whose prejudice is really showing--claiming that this 'value-neutral' posturing of the 'gay gene marker' really addresses whether 'homosexuality is wrong or not'--recognizing that if 'genetic engineering' will be as direct (and definitive) as Ulysses predicts, then, even as Ulysses initially admitted (but won't qualify it now), that knowledge could be authoritatively used against the 'gay gene' possessor as if a congenital disease--and you nor Ulysses made any comment about that (even though Ulysses originally admitted that as a possibility). You nor Ulysses appear to not have enough faith in each individual to determine sexual preference in their own lives without trying to explain it away as being something they have no choice over than what 'their genes command them'--a testament to how much doubt you have in individual will and how much contempt you have for individual rights. It's actually quite sickening once you think about it.

Quote rysl:

Science can answer many questions in a value-neutral way, that allows one to determine for themselves whether homosexuality is "wrong", just like whether cancer is "wrong".

But, here's the kicker--science cannot determine the rightness or wrongness of any act for any one. Period. Science is only a tool to describe our world in as accurate and precise a fashion as can be determined--it is not a substitute for how to live it--or judge it....

Kerry's picture
Kerry
Joined:
Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm
Quote rysl:

Kerry,

It is exasperating to watch as you seem to have no idea about genetics and want to somehow maintain homosexuality as a choice to maintain individuality.

Science can answer many questions in a value-neutral way, that allows one to determine for themselves whether homosexuality is "wrong", just like whether cancer is "wrong".

I believe that your assessment that he doesn't understand genetics is correct. He also has never understood my comments on this issue. He has inserted tangents about individuality and morality or lack of same into the thread, issues that are at best only tangential to my initial remarks. He has attributed motives and thoughts to me that simply aren't there. He obviously believes that homosexuality is a choice, just as halfwit fundamentalist preachers do, rather than part of any individual's basic, genetically endowed nature. His overall tone is consistently one of self-imposed, self-righteous indignation over what's been said, rather than straight argument or debate; he raves.

One cannot read his ramblings without concluding that in the nature vs. nurture argument he believes nurture (environment and choice) to be everything. Implicit, in turn, in that is that he must believe that one can choose whether to be gay or not. From there, it's only a short step to believing that it's OK to persecute people for that choice.

I think information provided by the Human Genome Project will eventually prove that genetics are determinate. The most annoying thing is that he doesn't understand what "value-neutral" means. He can't comprehend the concept that it means there is no morality of any kind whatsoever attached to anything that's value-neutral -- no judgments, no accusations, no condemning, and no conclusions leading either to support or persecution. He can't seem to understand that all thoughts, actions, and societal impacts that stem from the empirical existence of any fact are not inextricably linked to that fact itself. To put it more succinctly, he doesn't get that facts themselves don't determine what people do with them. For example, if you were to tell him that rocks are hard, he'd start screaming that they can't be hard because if they were, nobody could choose whether or not to hit somebody in the head with one.

Because he's immune to logic and incapable of discernment, responding to him is analogous to spitting into the wind, so I've stopped.

Ulysses's picture
Ulysses
Joined:
Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm
Quote Ulysses:

He has inserted tangents about individuality and morality or lack of same into the thread, issues that are at best only tangential to my initial remarks. He has attributed motives and thoughts to me that simply aren't there. He obviously believes that homosexuality is a choice, just as halfwit fundamentalist preachers do, rather than part of any individual's basic, genetically endowed nature.

I'm pretty sure I know as much (if not more) about the science of genetics than you or rysl. But, let me reiterate the point because I don't have a lot of time on my hands nowadays due to personal situations.

I don't have a problem with homosexuality being a choice--apparently, in your attempt to try to 'value-neutralize it' in some idea that 'the genes command them', you do. It is you who are thinking more fundamentally with regards to this. The fact of the matter is that science cannot answer a question as to whether something is 'right or wrong'--that point you, also, continue to ignore.

But, I see that you and your compadres like to smell each other's asses and beat yourself on the chest. Have at it....I won't be around....

Kerry's picture
Kerry
Joined:
Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

Well guys, I wanted to give you two (Kerry and Ulysses) a chance to finish expressing your points before I jumped back in the mix. You’ve both made your positions very clear. Here is my quick assessment of where you guys stand based on what I’ve got from your responses.

First and foremost you’ve made it clear that you are both in support of gay equality, however you differ in regards to what you believe are positive steps in the direction towards accomplishing that goal. Ulysses has a view that is similar to my own in that he believes that if it can be proven that homosexuality is natural and without choice then that would be a damaging blow to the main argument used by those who do not support gay equality because they disagree with the “lifestyle choice”. Kerry seems to have a big problem with the idea that human beings are not in complete control of our actions. Kerry has embraced the belief that human beings make choices, real choices and doesn’t believe that our choices are simply cause and effect as I’ve suggested. This seems to be the biggest source to the debate between you two.

Kerry, it seems as if you’ve somewhat misconstrued Ulysses’s main point and you seem to be trying to lure him into a debate about whether or not homosexuality is right or wrong. However, what I get from Ulysses’s argument is that he believes that science via the Human Genome Project will at some point discover a gay gene. Ulysses feels that if a gay gene is discovered this will drastically improve tolerance. Kerry made the suggestion that if a gay gene is found then some people will try to find a way to do away with this gene. Ulysses seemed to disagree with that point, but I agree that many people would begin an attempt to find a way to isolate and eliminate that gene. I, however am not of the belief that the Human Genome Project will find a gay gene and my theory doesn’t suggest that either. I, unlike the both of you guys have a very limited knowledge of genetics, so I openly acknowledge that I could be wrong in regards to the discovery of a gene.

Kerry, I’d like to respond to some statements you made in regards to my position. In The Matrix video clip that I posted a link to let me just clarify what was going on in that scene. (I had no idea that there was a person on this planet who hadn’t seen it, lol) I apologize for assuming that you’d already seen the movie. The Merovingian (The French guy) was not a human like Neo, Morpheus, and Trinity. In fact they were the only humans sitting at their table. Everyone else was a computer program. The Matrix, in my opinion was an allegory which explained how the few powerful and smart people control and used everyone else. If you watch that clip again you will see that even The Merovingian who boasts that he knows so much admits when asked how he knows what he knows states that he is a trafficker of information and knows everything that he can and jokingly states that he must excuse himself because he drank too wine and must now take a piss, cause and effect. My point is that although he knew how to cause the woman to have intense sexual feeling (represented by the pelvic explosion) and indeed wrote the program in the piece of cake that turned her on, he himself was also subject to the laws of causality as we all are. You appear to be like Morpheus, of the belief that everything begins with choice, but I agree with The Merovingian, meaning that if I know what causes you to behave a certain way then I can create the effect, and you will unknowingly believe it was your choice. In regards to my attraction to women, I’ve never had a choice; it was never a choice to make. I’m only attracted to women and it’s all cause and effect in my opinion. And when you think about it Science is all about finding causes which lead to manipulating effects (Medicines are a great example)

Kerry I feel that the thought of you not being in complete control of your actions either scares, angers, or disappoints you, or some combination of the three. I think one could argue that your position could easily be seen as one of arrogance and/or self centeredness. I only say that because your belief would imply that your purpose on this planet is completely self serving and devoid of any larger purpose or plan for humanity, which my theory somewhat implies.

Mitchell McElroy's picture
Mitchell McElroy
Joined:
Apr. 21, 2010 8:12 pm
Quote Mitchell McElroy:

Kerry I feel that the thought of you not being in complete control of your actions either scares, angers, or disappoints you, or some combination of the three. I think one could argue that your position could easily be seen as one of arrogance and/or self centeredness....

If I'm not in control of my actions, then who or what is, Mitchell McElroy? My genes? You seem to pass off my stand as being 'arrogant and self-centered' yet you don't seem to acknowledge how arrogant it is to undermine human dignity to the 'value-neutral state' of genetic commands. If 'nature' is the trump card and 'will' (or 'choice') has no role in human behavior, then, what I've said about herd behavior (remember alpha males and females and its 'natural promiscuity') and violent actions (is there a 'violence gene' that we cannot control even as, if taken to its extreme, it can destroy us?) has no remedy. Is that arrogant and self-centered to you?

You appear to be like Morpheus, of the belief that everything begins with choice, but I agree with The Merovingian, meaning that if I know what causes you to behave a certain way then I can create the effect, and you will unknowingly believe it was your choice. In regards to my attraction to women, I’ve never had a choice; it was never a choice to make. I’m only attracted to women and it’s all cause and effect in my opinion. And when you think about it Science is all about finding causes which lead to manipulating effects (Medicines are a great example)

Then, in this attraction you have for women, do you believe that to be genetically determined as if a 'heterosexual gene' in contradistinction to this proposed 'homosexual gene'--and that you have no choice as to how it is expressed (especially when considering 'two consenting adults')? Or, is the 'homosexual gene' despite Ulysses claim to the 'value-neutral state' of science just another way of describing it as 'different', 'abnormal', as if a 'congenital disease'--or a state of distorted being based on inappropriate genetic coding. Your negative judgment on homosexuality is disguised as scientific objectivity if you think that a 'gay gene' is going to explain all 'gay behavior'....or get rid of all negative judgment about it.....

Kerry's picture
Kerry
Joined:
Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

Kerry I'd like you to take a look at the comments posted by a homosexual individual in response to me posting this very same theory on my website. I'd like your take on whether or not you believe choice and will have more influence than nature on the actions of this individual the link is below

http://www.mitchellmcelroy.com/americansociety/is-homosexuality-simply-a-part-of-evolution/

What I am essentially saying is that you are only in control of your actions up to the point in which you understand the cause of your actions. This means that essentially your actions are a complex equation consisting of various causes and effects, but unless you can understand what motivates your every action then you will believe that you are exhibiting free will. However, if I can figure out a way to bring about an effect for you by creating a cause that you are unaware of, then it is I who is in control of your actions. Therefore nature has a huge head start on all of us and is in control of us all, as it has been programmed to know what to do with us and we are still in the process of understanding it.

Mitchell McElroy's picture
Mitchell McElroy
Joined:
Apr. 21, 2010 8:12 pm
Quote Mitchell McElroy:

What I am essentially saying is that you are only in control of your actions up to the point in which you understand the cause of your actions.

With respect to 'choice', the 'cause of your actions' is not nearly as important as something like the 'desired results of your decision'--and even that may be too explicit a description when it comes to 'choice' as I am using the term. It appears that you are coming at this with just the opposite pretense--with respect to the human condition, as my experience in medicine has shown to me, you will seldom (if ever) get to the very 'cause of your actions' in any definitive manner as if an empiric fact. And, that's for yourself--to claim that you (or anyone) can determine that cause (assertively and authoritatively) for any and everyone else as if a 'scientific certainty' (like the presumption of a 'gay gene' makes) is, as I've been trying to say, taking science into the realm of human actions and thoughts to a place better left for philosophy.

What is being described here is a subtle--yet I believe very present and persistant--slur against homosexuality as a 'choice' as if 'nature' were the excuse. Even your homosexual responder to your post on your other forum seems to imply that with this statement:

Since christianity is my belief of choice I know that I must change my ways so that I please GOD. From a Faith based christian standpoint, I Understand that God Clearly Hates Sin (NoT The SINNER), and Homosexuality in the bible is a sin. I don’t think we will ever fully know why Homosexuality exist, but its 1 of those things keep people talkin. why does anyone do the things they do? who really knows.

The other thing that I believe 'choice' allows is twofold--since you have that 'choice', be happy with who you are with that 'choice'. Secondly, and please don't interpret this as if I am assuming this is what homosexuals must do, 'choice' also allows you to change your mind and your direction if the 'desired results of your decision' aren't met. I will qualify that point with the point that 'my choice' doesn't have to be 'your choice'. We may have to agree on what constitutes a 'moral choice' in order to have a better society--but, with respect to sexual actions, I think that can be simplified into what 'two consenting adults decide'--and that's it. I can't speak directly for God--but, then, I don't know who can. I am also a 'Jesus believer' (and a 'God believer')--but I would not try to pretend to determine 'God's word' as far as His ultimate 'moral direction for our lives' more so than 'love your neighbor as yourself'--and, again, I can't claim what that 'self' means for you or anyone else and I can barely glimpse at an understanding of it with 'my'-self in any social context. I think it plays well into a democracy of equal rights to all individuals--but that may be an aside to this issue...

Your responder did say this:

my belief is that homosexuality was a seed that was planted in my life at a very young age. As a little child I was always approached by men older than me because i was shaped like my mom (lol Hips and DonK..lol its the truth), as a little boy, and also I feel because I was a very innocent chid very likeable and easy going.

Does 'at a very young age' mean 'at conception' with this 'gay gene' marker? The description that your responder is using doesn't seem to indicate that--and I would agree with that. What formulates the persona of every individual is unique to their circumstances. It would be folly of me to believe that I could reach and understand 'the cause of their actions' in each and every situation to a definitive degree--and the best I believe that I could do is 'place myself in their circumstances' (that takes 'imagination' in line with a 'philosophical perspective'--not 'scientific fact') and see what I could make of them. But, to believe that I could ever come to some understanding of it in a manner that would remove their 'choice' (even if I didn't 'agree with it') would be quite presumptuous and arrogant of me--I will leave that one up to that person and their God (or, as I like to see 'God', their 'integrity binder')....

This means that essentially your actions are a complex equation consisting of various causes and effects, but unless you can understand what motivates your every action then you will believe that you are exhibiting free will.

Why are you confining the definition of 'free will' to what you can understand as the cause to my actions? In fact, why would you confine that as your understanding of 'free will' for yourself? The entire point of 'choice' concerns to idea that you can guage various possibilities for yourself and, then, act accordingly. And, again, the corollary to that would be that if your action isn't as you expected, you have 'another choice'--that's 'free will' as I see it....

However, if I can figure out a way to bring about an effect for you by creating a cause that you are unaware of, then it is I who is in control of your actions.

Do you really want to be in control of my actions? Why? While, again, I believe there to be a simplified moral code that we can all agree to live with, I am not one to believe that I have to control every aspect of someone else's life--and, you are quite right, I have a hard enough time doing that as a 'control factor' for my own--but, as I live on, I understand that, just like history, if I don't learn from my mistakes, I'm likely to repeat them....

Therefore nature has a huge head start on all of us and is in control of us all, as it has been programmed to know what to do with us and we are still in the process of understanding it.

While I agree that we are unlikely to reach any empiric truth to all reality as if a 'scientific fact' that we can manipulate at will (and, therefore, 'nature rules'), I disagree with that in the context of any and all human behavior (that, by the way, 'nature' has given us) with respect to 'free will' and 'choice'. And, when answering your question about sexual behavior in general, I had stipulated that that response is dependent upon where you choose (sorry, couldn't think of a better word) to place sexual conduct. Is it an 'uncontrollable impulse'--or a mutual 'willed consent'--to you? I've said all along that I am one to believe highly in 'the will'......otherwise the natural promiscuity of herd behavior and the natural propensity for violence in such herds 'rule'.....I don't agree with that....


Kerry's picture
Kerry
Joined:
Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

I always experience a profound sadness when I read these Christian gay "sinners" trying to conform their real selves to homophobic dogma. I saw a lot of this sickness in my ministry with conservative gays. They sought me out because I had served on the Presbyterian GA Task Force in the mid-70's, and knew I was for acceptance and not judgement. But they were not looking for a liberal church because they still loved the old hymns and stories, and church had been important in their family and circle of friends.

Coming to terms with their sexuality cost them all of that. Of course they tried to conform, tried to find girls exciting, tried to be celibate. They could not tell anyone about a "secret" they tried to pray away. It would not go away. The phase never ended. They were the ones cursed in the pulpit and seen as evil by "everyone."

"Conversion ministries" invariably led to misery. I did encounter a few guys who had been confused in their early sexual identity, largely because they did not fall in with macho conformity, and who were befriended by gay men. They became sexually involved out of gratitude and friendship, and because they had very little sexual experience at all, exploration had little to be compared with. When conversion ministry provides a new support group, these false gays become examples of success.

The legend of women's colleges is that every sophomore has experimented with being a lesbian. There is a grain of truth because being liberated from men in the classroom does bring out power and assertiveness in women. Much of our sexualized culture imposes immature roles, so we have macho insecurity posturing as male power and "Barbifems" who mirror the fantasies men are supposed to have about them. Being authentically gay or lesbian complicates this already messy are of culture and religion.

The issue of "choice" is embedded in our theology of "free will," and it has some unfortunate consequences. For example, if sexual orientation were truly a matter of choice, why would it be wrong to choose to be gay instead of straight? Unlike the image of "cancer," there is nothing wrong or "unnatural" with the same gender relationship choice. It might even be a good way to depress the population explosion.

The analogy of addiction has been used to compare homosexuality with alcoholism. It is not a "choice" to have a problem, but it is a choice not to indulge a problem. Some people cannot drink. But we do not see this compromising an essential part of their human nature. Some alcoholics do fine smoking weed while others have "addictive personalities" and will misuse any intoxicant. It is what works that matters. Requiring sobriety in every manner as the dogma for the rehab is going too far. Requiring celibacy or dutiful heterosexual performance from gay and lesbian people is going to the core of their human being.

From a religious perspective, I urge anyone who believes that the Bible requires obedient Christians to forgo being gay to wake up and recover your authentic tradition of biblical authority. We need to repent of this homophobic resistance to grace and honesty. We have aided and abetted the persecution of gay young people by preferring our prejudices to the Word of God and the present witness of the Spirit in our friends and neighbors, our brothers, sisters, fathers and mothers, in all the fine gay and lesbian human beings we know who we did not know 40 years ago.

The Bible stuff is easy. Reformed doctrine placed the authority for biblical interpretation in the illumination of the Holy Spirit, not in how we read texts with reason. The basic frame is that the Word of God, correctly understood, cannot be in conflict with the Nature of God. God is Love, Justice and the embodiment of all Truth, not just what is in the Bible. These Reformers gave "the rule of love" authority over any interpretation of any text, and what made the Bible "infallible" is mysterious, not the rationally interpreted texts. The Bible may be "perfect," but we are not.

We have seen obscure texts made into icons of moralism. The First Chapter of Romans is a rhetorical set-up for the condemnation of judgementalism as incompatible with authentic grace. The Second Chapter rips the judgemental a new one as Paul presents them with the Gentile who does the Law without knowing it. This is a concept as foreign to those Roman Christians as the idea that gay and lesbian people are OK with God is to our culture warriors. Paul also calls the embarrassments to Christ.

What is at stake for homophobic Christianity in the opposition to inclusion? We see clear examples of fine human beings who happen to be gay. We have lots of science that rejects the prejudices of culture and refutes the theories that made it possible to think of homosexual orientation as a problem. And, even parents who want their kids to avoid all the hard things life can throw at us discover that their kids who do not conform create another opportunity for growth in us. It is not as if homosexuality were a disease or handicap. It is not a deformity. It is not a tendency toward self-destructive behavior.

This is why I think the search for the gene or the biological evidence of cause has such little upside and so much opportunity for abuse that it is not worth the time. Releasing the victims of homophobic theology from the "choice" between being true to themselves and true to "the Bible" or to God is the way to solve the dilemma faced by the conservative Christian gay quoted here. The Holy Spirit has spoken, but those whose eyes are fixed on bible texts are not hearing. They are crusading rather than listening to the Word of God, clearly directed at them in Romans 2.

DRC's picture
DRC
Joined:
Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

Dulcimerbird, Did that study take into account that there is the same prevelence of homosexuals in low population area as there are in urban areas. Many gay people move to dense urban areas from rural due bigotry.

shalwechat's picture
shalwechat
Joined:
Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm
Quote DRC:

The issue of "choice" is embedded in our theology of "free will," and it has some unfortunate consequences. For example, if sexual orientation were truly a matter of choice, why would it be wrong to choose to be gay instead of straight?

That's the point, DRC. With respect to seeing sexual orietation as a matter of choice, there wouldn't be a problem with choosing to be gay instead of straight. And, again, that 'choice' is NOT with respect to any 'cause'--but, in consideration of what 'result' is desired. And, I think we both agree with that 'result'--love....or, even just any mutually desired outcome with respect to 'two consenting adults'...

'Choice' does place the prospect of judgment exactly where I think it should be--in the one who is choosing....anywhere else to me is just another form of 'herd behavior'....it may be 'natural'--but, I don't think that's all there is to the human condition....

Quote DRC:

Unlike the image of "cancer," there is nothing wrong or "unnatural" with the same gender relationship choice. It might even be a good way to depress the population explosion.

The analogy of addiction has been used to compare homosexuality with alcoholism.

I'm not sure if you are agreeing with that analogy or not--if so, once again, you have subtly condemned homosexual behavior--unless you are for an alcoholic continuing his 'addiction' to self-destruction....

I'm not sure why we are eskewing 'free will' and 'choice'--and I'm not sure what we are choosing in their place since I believe that the very condition of decision-making is dependent upon 'free will' and 'choice'. What is the alternative to that perspective that won't resemble 'herd behavior'? The same type where there is 'natural promiscuity' concerning alpha males and females and 'natural violence' concerning 'herd actions'--the very 'natural violence' that I believe is the basis for the 'incorporated (and militaristic) mindset'....all dependent upon 'herd behavior'--and, as is well known in the war mindset, you have to remove 'the other's' humanity before you can kill them--to give them the same humanity that you have is internally inconsistent with any form of moral conduct.....

Kerry's picture
Kerry
Joined:
Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

Mitchell McElroy et al., as a college psychology instructor, I discuss homosexuality at times in my classes, although I am also a heterosexual adult male. Having followed the issue over the years and been exposed to the latest scientific information, here is my informed opinion (or educated guesses, if you will).

1. Homosexuality is biological but not genetic. It probably results from certain prenatal hormonal or other conditions which occur in a small percentage of fetuses;

2. Homosexuality is not biology's way of weeding out people who would be bad parents. To the contrary, recent research indicates that children being raised by homosexual couples are better adjusted on the average, then those being raised by heterosexual couples.

3. There are some biological differences between homosexuals and heterosexuals, apparently caused by the prenatal differences. One example is that for males, the likelihood of homosexuality goes up as the number of older brothers one has goes up. It is postulated that the mother develops antibodies which can attack the developing brain of the fetus, somehow resulting in altering the person's sexual orientation. My youngest nephew who is about 17 years old and the 4th son in his family, clearly seems to be homosexual, but his older brothers and sisters are all heterosexual. On the other hand, I am a third son and heterosexual, but these percentages of homosexuality are still pretty low even for boys who have several older brothers.

Mitchell, you said your thesis was only possible, not that you believed in it necessarily, so I am weighing in on the "no" side with the best information I am aware of. There was too much verbiage in this thread for me to read through it all, so I may be replicating some other info., but some people seem to have a difficult time coming to the point.

Natural Lefty's picture
Natural Lefty
Joined:
Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

Thanks NL. The analogy of alcoholism and homosexuality is wrong, and I was citing it to show how those who use it presume that there is a problem even if it is not "chosen." My point about the emptiness of the "is it a choice" issue is that that is also a red herring. The best analogy, but none is perfect, is about how many of us are left-handed.

My dad was a "converted leftie," and it left him with a lot of adjustment problems in terms of physical skills. I think it also had effects from being stigmatized and put through the change to writing with his right hand.

The complexity of the issue of knowing ourselves includes the fact that human sexuality is more than either/or. Falling in love does not have a metric we can impose to control it. Thank God! Even finding a hot date is about more than data and research. You have to enjoy each other. And the range including bisexual orientations is only part of what leads to any relationship.

As I posted above, the conflict felt by cultural and religious conservatives against being gay and OK or Christian is pure cultural prejudice. Helping people be relieved of false conflicts is the answer for them. Some gay oriented or lesbian conservative Christians do make a heterosexual marriage "work" in the formal sense. Some don't even know they are gay or lesbian because they are fairly naive about sex and confuse sexual ecstasy with temptation and sinful desires.

I have a friend whose husband had to help her discover that she is a lesbian. They had a loving marriage, but the sex never got past a friendly good time. Jim is a hell of a guy. They are good friends, and their children are among their strongest supporters.

And, as I said above, I think therapy should be directed at self-discovery without any imputation that the self one discovers is not the natural self you should be. It is not about choosing not to undertake the burdens of being gay in a homophobic society if one really is gay. That closet or low intensity marriage will never be a substitute for the real thing.

DRC's picture
DRC
Joined:
Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

DRC, you are welcome, although I am not sure what you are thanking me for. I guess I injected some real scientific info. into this discussion, after all.

You mentioned left-handedness. Are you also left-handed, or just your "converted lefty" dad? It is a different topic, but not unrelated. For one thing, I heard somewhere that the homosexuality rate is higher among lefties. It may be that both handedness and sexual orientation are affected by similar prenatal influences. Yet, my 2 brothers and myself are all left-handed and heterosexual, while my homosexual nephew is right-handed. Once again, we are talking about rather small percentages of homosexuals here even among lefties. Nonetheless, I can remember some left-handed students of mine, both male and female, who I am fairly certain were homosexual. Handedness also relates to homosexuality socially. Although the fact that about 90% of the population is right handed appears to be a strange accident of genetics and perhaps other biological processes in humans, the 90% who are in the majority historically have taken the opportunity to turn handedness into a social and even moral issue, which in my view makes the people who degrade lefties the ones who are truly in the wrong, much as gay bashers are the ones who are really in the wrong regarding sexual orientation. Neither handedness nor sexual orientation should be a moral issue, and we should encourage and celebrate the talents and contributions of those of any handedness or sexual orientation. To put it simply, there is nothing wrong with being left-handed, right handed, straight or gay, but there is something wrong with judging others as being wrong for expressing their natural inclinations which harm no one, and making life harder on them simply because they are in the minority. The phrase "tyranny of the majority" comes to mind.

Natural Lefty's picture
Natural Lefty
Joined:
Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

I think I've used the concept of 'majority rule over minority rights' when it comes to expressing satistical trends as if facts in a scientific manner. While all actions and behavior have statistical trending potentials, the ultimate expression of most human endeavors lacks a specific and precise 'cause'. So, in my use of the terms 'choice' and 'free will', we are left with deciding what 'effects' we really want. I believe it the wrong approach to claim we can explain ourselves as if in an empiric data analysis--like Daniel Dennett's idea (in his book, Consciousness Explained) that consciousness can be 'explained away' with specifying the neurotransmitter interactions of the brain involved with it. That's why I continue to use the terms 'choice' and 'free will'--not as scientific descriptions but as philosophical ones....and I still think that's a valid use of the terms. DRC and I seem to have some differences on its application but I guess that where's I place a fundamental point to my position--all thinking perspectives start with the individuals thinking of it (there is no other 'thinking entity')--and 'choice' and 'free will' are part of that. To apply some over-arching 'scientific' (or 'cultural' or whatever 'grouping perspective') you want against that position is not, to me, a step forward into some 'new enlightenment' but a step backwards into 'dogmatic regimes'....

As I remember Bob Dylan stating in one of his songs (I can't remember which one at this point): 'Look not for answers where no answers can be found'.

Kerry's picture
Kerry
Joined:
Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

Kerry:

Tried to find a way to send you a private message, but it eludes me on this board. I've been thinking about your wife's surgery, and I hope she is recovering. If you care to share news, I'm sure fellow Thomlanders would be interested to know how your family is doing.

PeeWee Returns's picture
PeeWee Returns
Joined:
Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

PeeWee, I have the same issue with this version of the Thom Hartmann site. This one works very efficiently, but it is very simple, so there seems to be no way to "friend" people or send them messages. There are no statistics on number of views, etc. either. I used to have trouble using the old site at times where it wouldn't accept my posts or would mess with them, so it's pretty much a toss-up between the two sites.

Natural Lefty's picture
Natural Lefty
Joined:
Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

Thanks PeeWee for the concern. My wife is doing remarkably well. Unlike me 8^), she's quite popular at work and has had many well wishers and many prayer sessions done in her honor (and many here believe prayer works and say that's what's helping--I say 'whatever works' and 'thank God for that'...). Many have commented (including her sister and brother who are now here from Canada to visit her--first time they have ever been here) that they cannot even tell she's had brain surgery (much less a lemon-sized tumor taken out of her right frontal cortex region). They didn't even shave her head. She still has 36 staples near the front of her head but she's able to cover that up with how she wears her hair.

She won't get the staples out and she won't know what type of tumor she had until we revisit the neurosurgeon in San Antonio next week. The neurosurgeon himself vacillated between 'benign' and 'low grade' in his descriptions--but, once we started thinking about it, there probably isn't a whole lot of difference between a benign and low grade malignant brain tumor (since brains have the largest blood supply on a weight basis than any other part of the body, even highly malignant brain tumors seldom metastacize to areas outside of the brain--they are already in 'the best soil' in the body and probably wouldn't like it as much anywhere else--and all brain tumors can regrow)--and she's been having headaches in her right forehead region for years and years (while I've been trying to get her to get a CT scan for at least the past 5 years, I've also remarked that 'I guess if this were a cancer, it would have already killed you'...I hope I'm right...). Again, thanks for your concern PeeWee--and everyone's well wishes.....

Kerry's picture
Kerry
Joined:
Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

The term, "normal," when used in a purely scientific context, is, indeed value neutral, as is "abnormal." Norms are only those states of being in which more of anything is a certain way than not; abnormality, in that context, is merely whatever states of being are not majority conditions. It's only when social and cultural values are placed on the terms "normal" and "abnormal" that their uses, meanings, and definitions become positive or pejorative. No discussions of free will, no matter how rambling or in what depth, can obviate this.

Nor is it intelligent to postulate that if genetics is determinant, man cannot transcend them, and to worry about that. If that were the case, the entire human race would still live at the level of survival barbarism -- sans law, government, culture, education, and commerce. It's only and precisely in willfully transcending the basest instincts of man's nature that he becomes anything more than an instinct-driven lower animal. The fact that humans all too often fall short of transcending the basest aspects of their natures doesn't negate this.

It may or may not be that homosexuality is biological without being genetic. That's a very real possibility, but I don't think so because that position is one step removed from a plausible (if speculative) root cause. What I mean by that is that if it's true that it's biological, genetics cannot be ignored because biology is not independent of individual genetics but, rather, synergistic with them. The unanswered question in the biological-but-not-genetic argument is: What causes the hormonal changes, etc., that create the governing biological conditions for homosexuality? There are only three possible answers: Nature (genetics); nurture (environment); or combined nature and nurture. To argue for environmental stimuli causing a condition without isolating and defining those stimuli is equally as speculative as arguing for genetics as an exclusive cause.

Ulysses's picture
Ulysses
Joined:
Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm
Quote Ulysses:

The term, "normal," when used in a purely scientific context, is, indeed value neutral, as is "abnormal." .......It's only when social and cultural values are placed on the terms "normal" and "abnormal" that their uses, meanings, and definitions become positive or pejorative.

When the terms 'normal' and 'abnormal' are applied to humans--whether that be proposed as a 'scientific assessment' or not--always carries a value to it--and a judgment. Despite any contention that statistical trends are a 'neutral' assessment, again, when it's applied to humans, there is always a value applied to it. Look at what these statistical trending accusers did to my statement with the law enforcement officer stating that he was just 'concerned for my safety' when he decided to give me a ticket for not wearing my seatbelt because the statistical trends said that I would more likely survive an accident in doing so. That wasn't a 'value judgment' on their part? Bullshit.....it certainly wasn't 'neutral'....

Quote Ulysses:

Nor is it intelligent to postulate that if genetics is determinant, man cannot transcend them, and to worry about that.

If man can 'transcend them', then genetics aren't determinant. You can't have it both ways and come to any intelligent, logical conclusion over it...you can mask a negative judgment on homosexuality in it, however....and claim it to be 'value neutral' because that's what you call a 'scientific assessment'....but, I think at least some intelligent people can see through that....some maybe cannot....

Quote Ulysses:

It's only and precisely in willfully transcending the basest instincts of man's nature that he becomes anything more than an instinct-driven lower animal.

Exactly. So, how do you think a 'gay gene' is going to explain 'gay behavior'? Would that be those that haven't 'transcended the basest instinct's of man' in NOT being able to 'apply their will' against such a 'gay gene'? You see, you just can't get out of the point that, despite your attempt to claim this is a 'neutral judgment' (just as you 'neutrally judging' a claim that 'statistical trends' can be treated as if 'scientific facts'), you're using it in a manner that can be construed as being anything but a 'neutral judgment' by asserting it as if it is a 'scientific fact' in a way that can be judged because it's being applied to humans.....

Actually, nothing applied to humans is ever really 'neutral'--especially if the terms 'normal' and 'abnormal' are used with it....despite the pompous pretenses presently being stated...

Quote Ulysses:

The fact that humans all too often fall short of transcending the basest aspects of their natures doesn't negate this.

Which ones might be those? The gays that don't 'transcend' this 'gay gene'?

Quote Ulysses:

That's a very real possibility, but I don't think so because that position is one step removed from a plausible (if speculative) root cause.

You think that you can determine the 'root cause' of every human behavior? What's the 'root cause' of 'terrorist activity'? Can you explain that from your perspective? Then, can you claim that from the perspective of the 'terrorist'? And, if you think that they differ, which 'root cause' is 'the true root cause'?

Maybe there's a 'terrorist gene' that such 'terrorists' haven't 'transcended', eh? That's so 'abnormal'.....

Quote Ulysses:

To argue for environmental stimuli causing a condition without isolating and defining those stimuli is equally as speculative as arguing for genetics as an exclusive cause.

I'm afraid when it comes to humans and 'root causes', you aren't going to get any more 'scientific' than 'speculation'....that's why I believe it better to approach such interactions with respect to what 'results' you claim to want and, then, it will be defined better philosophically.....but, maybe I'm not 'intelligent' enough to see your point.....are you 'intelligent' enough to see mine? Read above....

Kerry's picture
Kerry
Joined:
Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm
Quote Kerry:

Holy Flawed Reasoning, Batman! He's Baaaaaaack!

[quote=Ulysses]

The term, "normal," when used in a purely scientific context, is, indeed value neutral, as is "abnormal." .......It's only when social and cultural values are placed on the terms "normal" and "abnormal" that their uses, meanings, and definitions become positive or pejorative.

When the terms 'normal' and 'abnormal' are applied to humans--whether that be proposed as a 'scientific assessment' or not--always carries a value to it--and a judgment.

Only in the minds of the scientifically illiterate.

Despite any contention that statistical trends are a 'neutral' assessment, again, when it's applied to humans, there is always a value applied to it.

Again, only in the minds of the scientifically illiterate, who haven't the discernment to distinguish purely objective values from sociocultural values.

Look at what these statistical trending accusers did to my statement with the law enforcement officer stating that he was just 'concerned for my safety' when he decided to give me a ticket for not wearing my seatbelt because the statistical trends said that I would more likely survive an accident in doing so. That wasn't a 'value judgment' on their part? Bullshit.....it certainly wasn't 'neutral'....

I was addressing norms, not statistical trends. They're two different things, which is one distinction taught in any entry-level statistics class. Besides, nobody's discussing whatever ancient run-in you may have had with the cops for disobeying the law.

Quote Ulysses:

Nor is it intelligent to postulate that if genetics is determinant, man cannot transcend them, and to worry about that.

If man can 'transcend them', then genetics aren't determinant. You can't have it both ways and come to any intelligent, logical conclusion over it...you can mask a negative judgment on homosexuality in it, however....and claim it to be 'value neutral' because that's what you call a 'scientific assessment'....but, I think at least some intelligent people can see through that....some maybe cannot....

This is illustrative of the fact that you totally misunderstood my point.

Quote Ulysses:

It's only and precisely in willfully transcending the basest instincts of man's nature that he becomes anything more than an instinct-driven lower animal.

Exactly. So, how do you think a 'gay gene' is going to explain 'gay behavior'? Would that be those that haven't 'transcended the basest instinct's of man' in NOT being able to 'apply their will' against such a 'gay gene'? You see, you just can't get out of the point that, despite your attempt to claim this is a 'neutral judgment' (just as you 'neutrally judging' a claim that 'statistical trends' can be treated as if 'scientific facts'), you're using it in a manner that can be construed as being anything but a 'neutral judgment' by asserting it as if it is a 'scientific fact' in a way that can be judged because it's being applied to humans.....

It's obvious that your misunderstanding is total.

Actually, nothing applied to humans is ever really 'neutral'--especially if the terms 'normal' and 'abnormal' are used with it....despite the pompous pretenses presently being stated...

Are you still here?

Quote Ulysses:

The fact that humans all too often fall short of transcending the basest aspects of their natures doesn't negate this.

Which ones might be those? The gays that don't 'transcend' this 'gay gene'?

Hoo, boy, that must be some powerful ganja!...

Quote Ulysses:

That's a very real possibility, but I don't think so because that position is one step removed from a plausible (if speculative) root cause.

You think that you can determine the 'root cause' of every human behavior? What's the 'root cause' of 'terrorist activity'? Can you explain that from your perspective? Then, can you claim that from the perspective of the 'terrorist'? And, if you think that they differ, which 'root cause' is 'the true root cause'?

Maybe there's a 'terrorist gene' that such 'terrorists' haven't 'transcended', eh? That's so 'abnormal'.....

Yes, yes. There, there. Whatever you say.

Quote Ulysses:

To argue for environmental stimuli causing a condition without isolating and defining those stimuli is equally as speculative as arguing for genetics as an exclusive cause.

I'm afraid when it comes to humans and 'root causes', you aren't going to get any more 'scientific' than 'speculation'....that's why I believe it better to approach such interactions with respect to what 'results' you claim to want and, then, it will be defined better philosophically.....but, maybe I'm not 'intelligent' enough to see your point.....are you 'intelligent' enough to see mine? Read above....

Conflation of science with philosophy? Pre-determining desired results without research, followed by non-scientific conclusion drawing to fit one's philosophical opinions? Well, Okey, Dokey, but I sure am thankful you ain't runnin' the Strategic Air Command or the Center for Disease Control. Lordy! Lordy! Lordy!...

FYI: The originator of this thread pretty well understood my positions and broke them down in pretty good detail after reading and thinking about them. You obviously have a problem even understanding them so that you can discuss them cogently.

Stay regular!

Ulysses's picture
Ulysses
Joined:
Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

Man, Ulysses, you're full of 'value-neutral' assessments when it comes to your understanding of the scientific method--including the bullshit that statistical trending represents 'scientific fact' in any way, shape or manner.....let's see:

Quote Ulysses:

Only in the minds of the scientifically illiterate.

Yeah, that really shows how 'values-neutral' you are, doesn't it? Just claiming it's 'scientific' sounds more important and 'knowledgeable' to you....but, you've got a long ways to go in recognizing where the methods of scientific thinking have its advantages--and its disadvantages....but, go ahead and apply it in that authoritative manner that you think 'gay genes' represent.....what you haven't actually understood is that the judgment of 'gay behavior' depends upon what you think about 'gay behavior'....covering it up in 'scientific' (and unproven) jargon doesn't erase that point.....

Speak for yourself, Ulysses....

Quote Ulysses:
Quote Kerry:

Despite any contention that statistical trends are a 'neutral' assessment, again, when it's applied to humans, there is always a value applied to it.

Again, only in the minds of the scientifically illiterate, who haven't the discernment to distinguish purely objective values from sociocultural values.

Can you do as you instruct me? Why don't you take my response to the 'statistical trending' of wearing seat belts and automobile accidents and tell me how YOU have 'distinguished purely objective values from sociocultural values'........what's the statement? People in glass houses shouldn't throw stones.....

And, even how 'objective' are the terms 'normal' and 'abnormal' (even 'statistically trended') really going to be, Ulysses? Come on now, 'abnormal' is an 'objective' term to you? You think someone sees you claiming that they are 'abnormal' as being 'objective'? You like to lay a lot of accusations down--but, you really have a hard time explaining yourself. Please tell me how you 'objectively' see the term 'abnormal'......How old are you? Not old enough to really explain yourself, it appears.....as you make a whole lot of claims that your position on 'science' is 'objective'.....with terms like 'normal' and 'abnormal'....

Quote Ulysses:

I was addressing norms, not statistical trends. They're two different things, which is one distinction taught in any entry-level statistics class. Besides, nobody's discussing whatever ancient run-in you may have had with the cops for disobeying the law.

It is that hard for you to follow a point? The statistical trend claims that wearing a seat belt is more likely to save your life than not wearing a seat belt--and, guess what, that statistical trend is 'correct' as far as 'statistical trends' go. However, there can be--and are--situations where it is absolutely wrong as it would have been in my own case if I had stayed strapped to the driver's seat and had the car's top impact in on my head. As would be the case if the car caught on fire and the person couldn't get the seat belt undone. As would be the case if the car went under water and the seat belt couldn't be undone. In other words, no matter what 'the trend' stipulates--it is NOT an 'objective fact' that can be asserted as being true in every situation. All you 'statistic trending accusers' about that couldn't--or wouldn't--see that point at the time. And, I see that you cannot see that point now....

Quote Ulysses:

This is illustrative of the fact that you totally misunderstood my point.

Then, for the interest of clarity, restate it. What is your point about this proposed 'gay gene'--and 'gay behavior'? And, please, include what you mentioned in your first post on this about how this may or may not be able to be manipulated by 'genetic engineering'...and what's that point? And, then, tell me how this supposed 'objective (and, as of yet, unproven) judgment' of yours gets rid of the negative judgment of 'gay behavior' (I'll have more to say about that with Mitchell McElroy's original post here in just a minute).....

Quote Ulysses:

It's obvious that your misunderstanding is total.

It's obvious that your supposed 'objective explanation' isn't....

Quote Ulysses:

Yes, yes. There, there. Whatever you say.

Read immediately above....

Quote Ulysses:

Conflation of science with philosophy? Pre-determining desired results without research, followed by non-scientific conclusion drawing to fit one's philosophical opinions? Well, Okey, Dokey, but I sure am thankful you ain't runnin' the Strategic Air Command or the Center for Disease Control. Lordy! Lordy! Lordy!...

You just keep getting more and more 'objective', don't ya', Ulysses? What 'pre-determined desired results without research' are you talking of here? Would that be the 'pre-determined desired results' of allowing 'two consenting adults' the freedom to do as they please? Or, does it take a 'scientific study' for you to determine that?

Quote Ulysses:

FYI: The originator of this thread pretty well understood my positions and broke them down in pretty good detail after reading and thinking about them. You obviously have a problem even understanding them so that you can discuss them cogently.

Maybe. However, Mitchell McElroy wasn't really very 'objective'--'scientific' or otherwise--in his assessment of this proposal to begin with. Look where he confined the concept of 'choice' in his original list (my emphasis):

Quote Mitchell McElroy:

A. Homosexuality is a choice made by mentally disturbed individuals.

Sort of in line with your 'scientific' use of 'normal' and 'abnormal'.....and how much you have conflated what 'science' can tell us about the human condition.....which isn't (and never will be) everything despite your belief that 'statistical trends' represent 'scientific facts' in any way.....including this pompous (and incorrect) proposal that this supposed 'gay gene' will 'explain it all' (or is it 'get rid of all judgment on gay behavior?') in the empiric, 'objective' fashion you claim as you continue to assert that 'normal' and 'abnormal' are 'objective descriptions and judgments'--maybe like Mitchell McElroy's 'mentally competent' and 'mentally disturbed' and the 'choice' of 'gay behavior'.....

Kerry's picture
Kerry
Joined:
Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

Ramble on. But do avoid the Biggest Billy Goat Gruff!...

Ulysses's picture
Ulysses
Joined:
Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

Ah, you're being so 'impressive' once again with that objectivity that you claim your angle on this supposed science and the 'gay gene' have, Ulysses. You can't even admit how much judgmental potential it really has (just the opposite of what you claimed it was)--and you can't even admit that when it comes to the judgment of homosexuality, what it really depends upon is, as I've said all along, what you think about it--no matter how else you want to characterize this pseudoscience of the 'gay gene', it really is just another way to camouflage that judgment on this issue--much as you and your cohorts camouflaged in 'statistical trending' your judgment on me with the 'statistical trend' of seat belts, auto accidents and the law all being for 'my safety'.....

When it comes to real genetic science, as Jack Cohen and Ian Stewart explain in that book, The Collapse of Chaos, despite some people's superficial representation of the study of genes, it never was like the genetic code was some sort of 'Book of Life' that all the organism had to do then was 'read it off' to live it. David Attenborough in a recent Discovery channel show called 'First Life' pointed out that early animals were just products of fractal genetic codes (simple genetic sequencing instructions repeated over and over--like the example of building a wall that I used before from Cohen and Stewart's book)--with the earliest animals having 8 coding instructions. As Attenborough stated, humans, in contrast, have over 25,000. I doubt in that diversity, one 'gay gene' is going to 'explain it all'.....the 'cause' for life is not quite that simple....neither is the 'effect'--but, at least we can have some influence on how that is expressed if we want to....or maybe not as our judgment can be clouded in other ways...especially ways claiming 'objectivity' when it really isn't....

Kerry's picture
Kerry
Joined:
Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

Currently Chatting

Time to Rethink the War on Terror

Thom plus logo

When Eric Holder eventually steps down as Attorney General, he will leave behind a complicated legacy, some of it tragic, like his decision not to prosecute Wall Street after the financial crisis, and his all-out war on whistleblowers like Edward Snowden.

Powered by Pressflow, an open source content management system