March 5, 2011
Homosexuality Is Not a Chosen Path
Homosexuality is the result of genetics and brain formation and is not a choice or effect of human nurturing. The debate of this topic has occurred for many years in many cultures. Brain formation as early as fetal growth in utero determines sexuality in proven studies. Genetic research shows that homosexuality linked through specific chromosome makeup. Some of society views homosexuality as a choice yet this sexuality exists in other species as well as humans. Other creatures cannot make cognitive choices and human beings are no different with regard to choosing sexuality. Animals cannot reason nor make cognitive choices. With respect to sexuality, humans are like other animals and do not choose their sexuality. Some of the genetic researched performed regarding homosexuality was through the study of twins. Monozygotic twins, identical twins, are the only people in the world that have identical DNA. Studying identical twins would be the best research to perform any type of genetic comparison. Ernest Kallman was the earliest to conduct studies on twins with regard to sexuality. Richard Pillard and J. Michael Bailey also performed gayness studies using monozygotic twins, dizygotic twins (fraternal twins), and non-related adopted brothers. The study’s participant selection included 56 sets of identical twins and 54 sets of fraternal twins, in which one twin was a homosexual (Bailey & Pillard, 1991). The results of the research by these men show that over half of the identical twins were self-identified homosexuals. Reports show a discovery of over half of the identical twins studied were both homosexual. The same study showed right at one fourth fraternal twins and five percent non-related adopted brothers had the same self-identification. The fraternal twin study showed that both twins were homosexual in 22% of the cases. The closer the genetic linking the pair is, they both exhibit either straight or gay tendencies. Further experiments with females led to the same conclusion. Another scientist, Dean Hamer, studied the family trees of men openly stating to be gay by taking 40 DNA samples. Hamer worked on the study with colleagues from the National Cancer Institute. In 1993 he found five genetic markers on section of the X-Chromosome called Xq28 (Turner, n.d.). The genetic linking is maternal in this specific stretch of the chromosome strand because the X-Chromosome is from the mother. Because the study was specific to a specific group it received the appropriate name as the gay gene study. Statistical probabilities found in the study give even further support to his findings. Other scientists have studied other areas for natural causes of homosexuality. Simon LeVay is a well-known neuroanotomist that studied the brains of gay men. “Something unusual is clearly happening when the brain is organizing itself in fetal life,” (Maugh II, 1992, para. 5) LeVay states. His research involved the dimorphism, meaning of the same but possessing characteristics that differ, of the hypothalamus. The hypothalamus is extremely small and found in the central part of brain. This area of the brain governs sexual behavior and controls the pituitary gland which secretes hormones (Wade, 2005, para. 6). Of the 41 cadavers LeVay dissected the brain, 19 heterosexual and 16 homosexual men; he found a cluster of neurons in the hypothalamus to be twice as large in heterosexual men as in homosexual men. Debates about Simon LeVay’s research have risen because the examinations performed were on patients who had died from AIDS-related illnesses (Pillard, 2003, para. 7). Subsequent studies proved the same results. Laura S. Allen, another scientist, supports the same experimental conclusions that the hypothalamus was also significantly larger in the experimental subjects in her studies...