Genetics | News | Television

Are People Born Gay?


The women of The View discuss the recent brain study and ask, "are people born gay?"

You won't be surprised by who thinks what. AFTER THE JUMP...

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  1. Don't know. Don't care.

    We ARE all born FREE and EQUAL with the rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness! That's enough for me.

    Posted by: Sportin' Life | Jun 20, 2008 3:36:14 PM


    It's great when folks from other countries post on Towleroad. Where do you live? Denmark?

    Posted by: Derrick from Philly | Jun 20, 2008 3:40:00 PM

  3. People who are Bi do have a choice. Why are Bi's left out of the arguement?

    Posted by: Ty | Jun 20, 2008 3:44:24 PM

  4. Massachusetts! LOL

    I do understand, btw, that getting those rights enforced is a separate thing entirely. I'm just tired of all this neo-craniology.

    Posted by: Sportin' Life | Jun 20, 2008 3:45:31 PM

  5. Au contrare. Bi people don't have to choose at all. That's the beautiful part. They can have everybody!

    Posted by: Gregoire | Jun 20, 2008 3:45:53 PM

  6. Ty: No, they do not have a choice. They did not choose to be bisexual. They choose there partner, just like straights and gays do but they do not choose their sexuality.

    Posted by: Mike | Jun 20, 2008 3:47:12 PM

  7. AT, babe, PLEASE stop using Red Lasso. They're always fucking up.

    As far as the question goes--I don't give a shit. Homosexuality exists. It always has and it always will, whether it's mental, emotional, purely physical, or whatever. What people need to do is accept it and move on.

    Posted by: Chas | Jun 20, 2008 3:49:51 PM

  8. I believe bisexuals were left out of the argument because they were not part of the study. Uncanny how that works!

    Is that crazy ol' Elisabeth Hasselbeck next to Baba Wawa? She made a surprisingly astute comment.

    Posted by: crispy | Jun 20, 2008 3:51:14 PM

  9. segment focuses on the biblical aspect of this "debate" and to think that of all five of them, Elizabeth made the more sense, and she's the conservative one, right?

    THE HUMANIST(I believe it was) on another thread on the same topic explained why bisexuals weren't represented at all and it srta made sense but a study on less than a 100 people in the Sweden(??)says absolutely NOTHING about the swingers in Turkey, South Asia, Latin America, Africa and even Western Europe. We'll have to wait and see what other studies come up with...

    Posted by: Shabaka | Jun 20, 2008 4:00:09 PM

  10. Bisexuality is no more and no less a choice than any other orientation.

    I'll give you my personal history. Until the age of 14, I thought I was straight. Up until a couple years ago I thought I was 100% gay. Then I realized that although I'm predominately attracted to males I also feel strong attraction to females every once in a while/when the right girl comes around. While I'm defintely sexually attracted to guys I wouldn't turn down an attactive girl either.

    Posted by: Chas | Jun 20, 2008 4:00:44 PM

  11. Proof reading,you moron..."the Sweden", should read just "Sweden"! Time to go home!

    Posted by: Shabaka | Jun 20, 2008 4:04:56 PM

  12. As far as the show goes, aside from my extremely dislike of Sherri Shepard, I think all of them are pretty reasonable and intelligent. The only person I ever had a problem with on 'The View' was Rosie O'Donnell. I may agree with her concerning gay rights but I think she's a loud, obnoxious bully.

    Posted by: Chas | Jun 20, 2008 4:16:11 PM

  13. Chas, that's hot. wanna go out?

    Posted by: Dan B | Jun 20, 2008 4:23:16 PM

  14. That ignorant whore Sherri Shepard--isn't she the moron who also said that she thought the world was FLAT? Nuf said. God, with the exception of Whoopi and Joy Behar, that show is a piece of crap!

    Posted by: El Tigre | Jun 20, 2008 4:41:49 PM

  15. Depends on what you think is hot about what I said, DANNY B.

    Posted by: Chas | Jun 20, 2008 4:51:02 PM

  16. The question shouldn't be "are people born gay or do they choose to be gay." We will probably never resolve this issue. Even if it is proven that homosexuality is a genetic thing, then bigots will advocate for a medical cure.

    The question should be "do consenting adults in the U.S. have the liberty to choose their sexual partners?"

    Posted by: James King | Jun 20, 2008 4:52:26 PM

  17. JK, the problematic thing isn't that people don't accept who other people have sex with. For all the cavetching about "pervesion", most biggots don't REALLY care about who you fuck as long as it's not "in their face". In fact, a lot of the times they're the one's engaging in said "perversion". It's when you have the nerve to stand up for yourself and the love that you have for another person that they really get pissed. So maybe the question should be "Do consenting adults the world over have the right to choose their sexual partners AND who they love?"

    Posted by: Chas | Jun 20, 2008 5:06:03 PM

  18. I stopped listening at Whoopy's "Did you know that scientists behind the study..."
    I have never understood that locution, "Behind the...".
    It is so offputting that I refuse to listen to anyone who says it.

    Posted by: Puddy Katz | Jun 20, 2008 5:14:07 PM

  19. I stopped listening at Whoopy's "Did you know that scientists behind the study..."
    I have never understood that locution, "Behind the...".
    It is so offputting that I refuse to listen to anyone who says it.

    Posted by: Puddy Katz | Jun 20, 2008 5:14:30 PM

  20. The View reminds me of the time that i forgot to take my iPod on the subway and was forced to listen to the inane ramblings of people who feel empowered by their ability to speak... i have never forgotten my iPod since.

    Posted by: james | Jun 20, 2008 5:24:54 PM

  21. Going beyond the point, I've always thought
    Whoopy was a Lesbian. Am I off track in my

    Posted by: DaK | Jun 20, 2008 5:40:43 PM

  22. Mid-time reader, first time poster:

    I was impressed with the response from Elisabeth Hasselbeck, in that it was reasoned, well stated and to the point. I also happen to agree with her on that view point. So color me biased. I don't know enough about her other views to see how this example reflects a consistent approach, but so far I think she seems reasonable (i.e., she can be reasoned with).

    As far as the aspect of the religious side of the discussion, Christianity is not Major League Baseball. The Bible is not a casual rule book you can pick up and use to support a single point in black and white. There is a lot of history, culture, symbolism, cross-reference and background you need to really get a fuller picture of what the Bible (as a whole) is stating. That's my opinion. I wish more people could discuss this viewpoint when the Bible comes up.

    Also, and this is a personal pet peeve of sorts, why is homosexuality always centered around sex?! Yes, I's in the name (homoSEXuality), but I still wish mainstream supporters (like Whoopi or the other lady, Behar?) would bring up that in a relationship, for most people, the sex is only a part of it....and as most of us may hate, the sex gets less important the longer the relationship goes on. Being sexual is not all there is to be a gay person, there is also emotional intimacy to complement the physical, and that's a point that needs to be taken into the center stage of the debate about civil rights for gays. The phrase "what people do in the bedrooms" seems to always come up, but never "what people do with their property, or bank accounts, or what people talk about while cooking dinner together, or in the hospital when one is being treated..." I hope I am making the point.

    Sorry I am not as succint or clear as Hasselbeck, but I don't tend to comment a lot so the deluge was backed up.

    PS Redlasso cut it off when it was getting good. Anyone know of a link to the full discussion?

    Posted by: Robert in SF | Jun 20, 2008 5:44:16 PM

  23. i can't stand interrupt-a-thon shows like this. just not the way i was raised!

    it's always good to keep in mind the participant pool from which the study was conducted. however, in terms of the brain volume, based on what we know about brain development it's highly unlikely that this can be affected by cultural differences with any other industrialized country.

    the study had two parts, one concerning brain volume (specifically the difference found between the sizes of the left and right hemispheres) and another concerning the degree to which activity of different brain regions was linked. "brain activity" reflects cognitive processes and thus can be affected by culture, but the connectivity analysis used here is suggestive of an anatomical difference underlying the findings (i.e., that certain anatomical pathways in the brains of gay people are different), and this is (perhaps) likely to reflect developmental differences rather than a result of being gay.

    but the part concerning brain volume is pretty unequivocal. i don't know of any reason that being gay, or being swedish would change the relative sizes of one's left and right hemispheres. from this we can infer that the study's results (at least from the brain volume analysis) do implicate an early developmental process at work in determining sexual orientation, and that the results of the study are widely applicable.

    Posted by: humanist | Jun 20, 2008 5:56:35 PM

  24. expanding on earlier comments about bisexuality, i think it's certainly just as interesting scientifically, but harder to analyze and understand (thus, logically second step research rather than first step research), and also less critical for human rights progress. when gay people have ALL the same rights as straight people, bi people will have 1) all the legal rights they are entitled to as well, and 2) an easier time trying to win the social rights they are entitled to, because so much ground will have been broken by the advancement of gay rights. right? i'm not suggesting that bisexual recognition shouldn't be on the agenda, but i do think that research and human rights work on homosexuality has a greater scientific and social impact in terms of where we are now, both in our knowledge and in our society. after all, in the sciences, bisexuality will be easier to understand when we have a thorough understanding of homosexuality, AND that understanding is much easier methodologically to acquire; in society, it's more dangerous to be gay than bi: in much of the world, bi people have limited choices, while gay people have none.

    Posted by: humanist | Jun 20, 2008 6:05:31 PM

  25. there should be a word limit on people's comments. geez.

    Posted by: Nathan | Jun 20, 2008 6:27:38 PM

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