Re: Disorders

Bradley Felton (
Mon, 13 Jul 1998 00:10:01 -0500

At 02:38 PM 7/12/98 -0500, Joe E. Dees wrote:
>> At 10:25 PM 7/11/98 -0400, Harvey Newstrom wrote:
>> >Maybe not. It is well documented that rats in an overcrowded cage start
>> >producing more homosexual rats. This seems to be a normal (genetic?)
>> >reaction to over-population. In the modern, over-populated world, it
>> >would make sense that the same factors could kick in to slowdown human
>> >over-population. If this is the case, it may be the breeding population
>> >that keeps increasing the population beyond sustainable levels who are
>> >overriding the natural programming with memetic ideals.
>> I think there are a couple of errors here:
>> 1. An increase in gay rats does not slow down the population bloom, as
>> non-gay rats are always happy to take up the slack.
>> 2. If these gay rats are not contributing to the gene pool, their trait
>> can not be said to have evolved for this purpose (it may be a "glitch",
>> which evolved for some other purpose but turns fatal in an over-populated
>> environment).
>> In humans, the "gay gene" exists in an equilibrium with those of other
>> sexual stratedgies, increasing its share in small societies where the
>> increased disease risk that this strategy brings is not a large factor,
>> decreasing when the opposite is true. Presumedly something similar is
>> going on with the rats....
>> -Bradley Felton
>>From what I understand, prenatal stress during certain fetal critical
>periods can cause the mother's hormonal levels and ratios to
>fluctuate, resulting in an increased likelihood of homosexual
>orientation in the child. This makes evolutionary sense; if the
>environment is hostile enough to cause hardship-induced stress to
>the mother, it is likely (the rule - though periodically broken - being
>environmental inertia) to be rough on succeeding generations.
>Individuals who would not have children of their own and could
>therefore devote resources to the well-being of their siblings'
>children would help sustain a genetic line through these times; when
>the environment improved and stress dscreased, so would the
>homosexual percentage of the population. I believe a study was
>done in Germany with children born in and immediately after the W
>W II period.

The more common effect of stress on human females during pregnancy is miscarriage. I find it hard to believe the scenario you suggest could have evolved: if resources are plentiful enough that a woman can afford to raise a dud kid, why not raise a loaded one instead? Same cost. If things are so tight she can't afford to raise a kid, raising a kid to help out isn't a viable alternative. Seems bogus to me. Hard to apply to the gay rats, as well.

Pray dust off this half-century old study and reveal the identity of the authors, so I can laugh at them....

-Bradley Felton