By: Simon Ewins
To: Johnny Mckinney
Re: Check It Out...
JM> This is a more kinder way of the NT saying
JM> that homosexuality is not right.
And if it is genetic, and if your god created such genetic
characteristics when it created mankind then how will you rationalize
The following is excerpted from an essay by Liz Saunders:
"There are certain biophysical aspects of us, as humans, which are
under strict biological control and no amount of socialization can
change them. For example, a person who has been frightened will have
an adrenaline surge that prepares the body for a fight or flight
response. Although our culturalization/socialization teaches us
acceptable methods of dealing with this biological phenomena, the
initial reaction that leads to the learned response is nonetheless
Another similar example is that of a lactating woman who physically
reacts to the sound of her own baby's cry by producing oxytocin, which
leads to a "letting down" of milk in preparation for feeding. This
will only happen when her own child cries and not at the sound of any
When it comes to gender identification and sexual behaviour our
hormones play a large part in our lives from conception. In the early
stages of life, all foetus' are gonadally female. Once the hormones
begin to develop, based on our chromosomal sex, male foetus' begin to
be differentiated. Dr. Richard Green studied a society with a hormonal
anomaly in the Dominican Republic. Some males are missing one
masculinizing hormone prior to birth, so are raised female. At puberty,
these children become "masculinized" by their hormones and apparently,
make the transition to male (Green 1987:43-4) thereby overcoming their
early socialization through their biology. Dr. Green suggests that
their brains were in fact 'organized' male before birth so that the
transition is easy (ibid).
One hormone, testosterone, is found in both sexes, and is the catalyst
of aggression, physical prowess and libido. Although women's bodies do
produce differing levels of testosterone "varying with the phase of the
menstrual cycle" (Hoyenga 1979:139), men's bodies regularly produce
more. Numerous studies on animals have shown that injecting either sex
with testosterone will increase its aggression levels. Over the years
male and female athletes have used testosterone and other steroids to
improve their physical performance and stamina and gain an aggressive
"winning edge". With prolonged testosterone use, the female athletes
also become very masculinized in appearance.
Although human females do not experience an annual "season" or estrus
as do other mammals, we do still experience hormonal cycles on a
monthly basis which affect our behaviour, as evidenced by recent
studies of premenstrual syndrome. "Aggression in women has also been
related to the premenstrual syndrome, a time when estrogen,
progesterone and testosterone levels are rapidly falling" (ibid:139).
For sub-primate animals, neither males nor females can control their
behavioural responses to the female estrus cycle. During certain parts
of the cycle "females lose interest in sex ... and... males lose
interest in them" (ibid:126) Alternatively, when a female is "in
heat", males can't ignore her. Although we have the ability to reason
and therefore "control" our biology, or at least our reaction to it,
which animals do not, this does not negate the biology.
There are a few conditions where the biological building blocks
provided for an individual are abnormal such as Kleinfelter's syndrome
and extra "Y" chromosomes for males, or Turner's syndrome and
congenital adrenal hyperplasia (CAH) for females.
Males suffering from Klinefelter's syndrome "have both the male (XY)
and the female (XX) chromosome pattern...[and]... are usually referred
to as pseudohermaphrodites" (ibid:33). They have physical abnormalities
(sexual and non-sexual characteristics); electroencephalographs
frequently show "aberrations, indicative of some disorder of brain cell
functioning"; and social/emotional problems (ibid). The latter may be
related to gender identity, as some of the physical abnormalities are
the development of female secondary sexual characteristics, and lack of
adult development of male secondary sex characteristics. Although,
Klinefelter's males show lower levels of testosterone than the general
male population, they have an abnormally high incidence of
incarceration, either in penal or psychiatric institutions (ibid:35).
It is impossible to say definitively whether the social and emotion
difficulties experienced by Klinefelter's males are a direct
biological/psychological response to cultural stimulus or cultural
reaction to cultural stimulus, but, if the Klinefelter's syndrome was
not present, with its biologically determined abnormalities, then in a
great number of instances, the resulting confusion and even
incarceration would probably not occur.
Men with extra Y chromosomes (XYY or XYYY) tend to be the most
aggressive group. "The XYY male,... has been characterized as impulsive
and as having a low tolerance for frustration or anxiety (Nielsen and
Christensen, 1974)." (ibid:36) It is believed that some of the most
dangerous criminals are XYY or XYYY. Many surveys have been done trying
to prove that the extra Y chromosome is the "criminal" chromosome.
Nielsen and Christensen (1974) concluded that it was, Jacobs (1971)
found "there was no significant difference found between the incidence
of males with an abnormality of the sex chromosomes in particular with
an XYY complement in these establishments [prisons and psychiatric
hospitals].. and the incidence of such males among the newborn"
(ibid:37). Therefore, the evidence is inconclusive, but intriguing.
Another biological aberration is Turner's syndrome. Turner's syndrome
females have only one X chromosome instead of two. They too suffer from
physical abnormalities (short stature, infantile sexual development,
including infertility in most cases). In a 1972 study Money and
Ehrhardt "found that Turner's girls were less athletic and fought less
in childhood, but had a greater interest in jewelry, perfume and hair
styling. Theilgaard (1972) also found that Turner's women dressed so as
to exaggerate their gender identity." (ibid:30) Further, Turner's women
tend to score lower on "tests of spatial ability" (Liss 1983:28,
Hoyenga 1979:30) than their "normal" female contemporaries and can
become easily confused regarding the location of objects and themselves
in relation to their environment.
Much recent study has gone into the biological causes of homosexuality.
Richard Pillard believes there is a definite hereditary aspect to
homosexuality and that he is uniquely qualified to search for it as he,
his brother, his sister and probably his father are gay, and he has a
bi-sexual daughter. (Burr 1993:60)
Early experimentation with artificially created "homosexual" rats
demonstrated that after treatment with "electrolytic lesions of the
ventromedial nucleus of the hypothalamus, a nucleus close to the stalk
of the pituitary gland and also in close proximity to those centers
that regulate gonadotropin secretion, and thereby sex hormone
production...male mating behaviour prevails [where previously female
mating behaviour had been present]. (D”rner, 1976, pp. 139-140)"
In recent studies Dick Swaab of the Netherlands Institute for Brain
Research, reported in 1990 that "the suprachiasmatic nucleus [in the
hypothalamus] was nearly twice as large in homosexual men as it was in
heterosexual men" (Burr 1993:52). These tests follow on the heels of
tests by Roger Gorski on the hypothalamus of rats which showed that
these same cells were "five times larger in volume in the male rat than
in the female" (ibid) Further tests were carried out by Simon Levay of
the Salk Institute who states "the discovery that a nucleus differs in
size between heterosexual and homosexual men illustrates that sexual
orientation in humans is amenable to study at the biological level."
There is also a suggestion that male homosexuals are "unfinished"
males, inasmuch as there may have been missing hormones or insufficient
quantities of certain hormones so that the female foetus does not make
a complete transition to male. The analogous argument for lesbians is
that there was an overabundance of certain male hormones, leading to a
certain masculinization (such as in CAH)."
I hope that this helps you to, perhaps learn to, react through
understanding and knowledge rather than through misinformation and
bigoted opinions put forward by those who fear that which they do not