I know, I know. We seem to discuss this a lot, but I ended up defending Christianity against my cousin, who I thought was also a good friend, but is trying to sway me with "scientific proof". Now, I don't believe for a moment that homosexuality is natural, but I've already sent her several of your articles on it, which I really don't think she read, or she wouldn't have asked similar questions that were actually addressed in the articles. It's so funny, people that support homosexuality or other sins as "lifestyle choices" call us intolerant when they won't even listen when we try to defend ourselves and show them proof that they're wrong. This world is getting crazier every day, it seems. Anyway, here's some sites she sent me. I'm trying to "level" with her and actually look through the stuff she sent me, hoping, in turn, it will make her read the stuff I sent her. Sorry this is so long.
- Survival of genetic homosexual traits explained
I think this article is a bit wishy-washy. It says one thing, and then seems to contradict what it says later on, but I'm not sure what to say as a reply to this article because I'm a little dense on anything scientific, and I know if I make even a small mistake defending my point, they will be quick to either ignore or mock anything I say next, and I'll just be confirming to them that they were right all along, even though they're not. Also, what's funny to me, is that this article is trying to say bigger families are more likely to produce a homosexual. My husband came from a family of 12, and none of them were homosexual. They weren't very religious. My husband was a little religious before me, but became Christian only after we were married, so there was very little biblical influence on them.
- Is There a 'Gay Gene'?
I don't really know a lot about biology, so I can't tell whether this article is merely sporting scientific jibber-jabber masquerading as fact to the unknowing individual (and who wouldn't be swayed by big, scientific words they don't know and are too lazy to research?) or if the writers are merely misguided.† I do know that God wouldn't purposely make someone a homosexual when it's a sin to be homosexual, but I need a bit more than that to back up Christianity, I'm afraid. Atheists are brutal. It does seem funny that there are articles and quizzes you'd find in most women's magazines all over the web site with this though.
- Why Gays Donít Go Extinct
I found it strange that they mention that the females that have homosexuals would end up having more children to cover the loss of having one that's homosexual (since they won't reproduce), but GOD wouldn't allow† someone to be born this way as a deformity. I just don't know how to counter this good enough, so they change their minds about it. I've noticed that the words "may and might" are used a lot, which means that there isn't any hard evidence, like they're just theorizing or guessing at it, and don't know anything for real. If I said that, I'd probably just get bashed. :(
- Gay from the Womb if Biological Older Brothers Matter
This one seemed a little ridiculous.
I'm really sorry this was so long, but I would really appreciate it if you could look over this "stuff" and help me come up with a good reply. Thank you!
Pay attention to the wording:
"Italian geneticists may have explained how genes apparently linked to male homosexuality survive, despite gay men seldom having children."
"The researchers discovered that women tend to have more children when they inherit the same - as yet unidentified - genetic factors linked to homosexuality in men."
"We think of it as genes for 'male homosexuality', but it might really be genes for sexual attraction to men. These could predispose men towards homosexuality and women towards 'hyper-heterosexuality', causing women to have more sex with men and thus have more offspring."
"But it's worth noting that the data on the sexuality of family members may be unreliable, so more studies are likely to be needed to confirm these findings."
This is a hypothesis about how a genetically based set of homosexuality genes might have been passed on. However, since the existence of such genes have not been proven, the hypothesis can't even be adequately tested. What is more interesting is that this article confirms what many have been saying all along: no research to date has proven the existence of homosexual genes.
What is also interesting is the admission that this hypothesis doesn't explain everything: "Even if the maternal factors identified by Camperio-Ciani's team are linked with male homosexuality, the research team's calculations suggest they account for only about 14% of the incidence."
This is all guess work dressed up with numbers. There is no actual facts backing the results.
Again, we note the wording:
"The results suggest that several genetic regions may influence homosexuality."
"Since then, questions arose regarding the validity of those results. Other researchers are attempting to replicate and verify Hamer's findings."
"Previous studies in male twins have suggested that between 40%-60% of the variability in sexual orientation is due to genes. The rest is thought to be due to environment and possibly other biologic but nongenetic causes."
Not that is article conflicts with the numbers given in the other article. This is a warning flag that numbers are being pulled out of the air -- a likely case since there is no hard data, only guess work.
"Researchers say the next step is to verify these results in a different group of men to see if the same genetic regions are associated with sexual orientation."
As typically happens, results are announced before a study can be verified to be consistent. You hear of the initial announcement, if it is what people want to hear. Later, when the studies can't be replicated, you generally don't hear about it.
But once again, we have only possibilities. This particular study doesn't even try to locate genes. It is only looking at the probability that some might be in the neighborhood.
This is another write up on the same study in #1. It presents no new evidence. Again, it shows the same level of uncertainty:
"Homosexuality in males may be caused in part by genes that can increase fertility in females, according to a new study."
"I would like to see the first observation reproduced in a different population and possibly with a larger sample to make sure that this holds up," he said. "If it is replicated, that's a very interesting finding. It's a possible scenario."
Some, as you noted, doesn't pass the sensibility test.
"Blanchard found that with each older brother in a family, the odds increase by about a third that a boy born later will be gay. This effect is not thought to be caused by genetics, but rather by antibodies produced by the mother's immune system during pregnancy."
I recall one author noting that homosexual studies tend to go in cycles. They look at environmental factors, which get shot down; so they look at societal factors, which gets shot down; so they look at genetics, which get shot down; so they go back to older theories. What is always avoided is choice because that means responsibility.
Also noteworthy is that even the hypothesis isn't complete.
"This system does not address causes of homosexuality in women, he said. "We're still working on lesbianism, but were not getting to the same result, and possibly we'll come out with a completely different explanation," he said."
"Gay orientation may start in the womb for a boy who was preceded into the world by a band of biological big brothers, according to a researcher here."
"The results "strongly suggest" that the so-called fraternal birth-order effect found in earlier studies has a biological basis, Dr. Bogaert reported, although exactly what that basis is remains unclear."
"Whether this is what is really happening for sexual orientation remains to be seen, but it is a provocative hypothesis," the authors wrote.
This is a report on the study that the other two mentioned when they said that other factors may be involved. It isn't arguing for a genetic cause but some mysterious biological cause. But that would mean that they are claiming that homosexuality is caused by some type of biological damage, and where there is damage, there can be a correction. Of course, the problem is that if there is damage and what the damage might be is complete speculation at this time.
This particular study claims to disprove societal factors. They say that only environmental factors are left, but that isn't true, there is still the matter of choice.
Even here, the claim of this imagined cause doesn't explain it all. "In earlier work, Dr. Bogaert and colleagues estimated that about 28% of homosexual men owe their orientation to fraternal birth-orderó"a minority, but not a negligible minority, of all homosexual men.""
These are just more proposed hypothesis about possibilities. There is nothing in any of them proving the existence of a genetic or environmental cause to homosexuality. What you have here is people copying articles without actually reading what they said.