>From: Spike Jones <email@example.com>
>Subject: Re: Gay Extropians!!!
>Date: Fri, 06 Oct 2000 20:25:56 -0700
>After quietly listening to the exchange on this topic, I submit this
>that there is some yet unknown mechanical/genetic explanation for
>homosexuality that is a completely random event. It comes from inheriting
>the genital configuration from one parent and the sexual orientation
>from the other, and that the probability of this is about 5% regardless
>of other factors. I have had gay friends tell me they were gay since
>as far back as their earliest memories, cases where twin boys were
>raised identically as far as anyone could tell, yet only one is gay. It
>must be something genetic, decided at the moment of conception.
Something striking I remember reading is that the correlation between
homosexuality between two identical twins is almost exactly 50% (if one twin
is gay, his twin has a 50% chance of being gay..) and that for non-identical
twins and for just plain brothers, it is about 25%. This tells me that the
influence is 50% of genetics and 50% social/environmental/whatever
(non-fraternal twins share 50% of their DNA - 50% x 50% = 25%).
I remember a few years ago, something on the news about a genetic marker for
homosexuality being found which had a statistically significant degree of
correlation. But then again, it wasn't 100%, and I'm sure social influences
or environmental factors play a very large role. I am sure that someone born
and raised in San Fransisco has a higher chance of being gay then someone
born and raised in Tehran.
The genetic marker impresses me, but I don't hear much about it. What I do
hear about, unfortunately, is that there are differences in the brains of
heterosexuals versus homosexuals - certain areas are larger in one group and
smaller in the other, with a high degree of correlation. This is cited as
strong evidence that homosexuality is caused by biological factors but I
think if it's looked at objectively, it's much more likely that the cause is
the other way around - it was also recently found that people who went blind
and learned braille had their visual cortex shrink and the area dealing with
sense of touch on the fingers grow, but nobody suggested that these changes
in their brain was what caused them to go blind.
A properly designed experiment would study these brain areas in deceased
infants, or ideally, aborted and miscarried fetuses, classify the
appropriate brain areas as larger then or smaller then average, and see if
the proportion between large and small matches the proportion between
heterosexual and homosexual in the US population.
I heard something a while ago, which I am skeptical about, which said that
if the length of your middle finger is more then one digit longer then your
index finger, you're much more likely to be gay.
>It is easy to see how societies with gays would have advantages
>over those that do not, however the above notion would suggest
>that *all* human societies have about the same percent gay, therefor
>no group selection advantage there. spike
(Who just checked the length of their index and middle fingers?)
The notion that all human societies have about the same percentage of gays
is incorrect. There is a tribe - I forget the name, it's a warrior culture,
very male dominant tribe, and I don't know where they are (does someone else
know?) which practices ritual homosexuality from a very early age, as a rite
of puberty. There is a place, some island around Ireland or Scotland, which
is known as the most sexually repressed place on Earth (besides Utah), in
which such things as homosexuality (and female orgasms) are completely
unheard of, and to walk around barefoot is to be considered partially
unclothed. I read of both of these places in a text book on "The Sociology
of Deviance" by Eriche Goode, it was an illustration of the role that
society plays in determining individual sexuality.
Zeb Haradon (firstname.lastname@example.org)
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