Disclaimer: I should say I am not a psychologist or biologist, though I have a few college level courses in the prior which probably color my view. In addition, I am not sexually a homosexual and have no personal experience with that aspect of it, though it piques my intellectual interest. Also, I am European (this is apparently a synonym to many).
Question: Do you tend to support a psychological or a biological explanation to why some people are homosexuals? Do you have a "pure" or a "mixed" view of the two, and why?
My opinion: I tend to support the psychological explanation of sexuality due to it being more parsimonious. Being "born" a homosexual doesn't immediately ring clear as a biological explanation requires a number of a priori assumptions of future state of the social environment as one grows up. Two people of the same sex cannot biologically reproduce and thus face extinction. Becoming a homosexual through the psychosocial environment is to me a simpler explanation as this would imply it being either a learned behavior, which may account for homosexual couples having a higher probability of raising a homosexual child, or as a response to other environmental factors such as sexual competition.
I'll stop explaining here and rather see where the discussion goes off to.
(Two notes to add: I don't think homosexuality should be treated even if it is "treatable". It is no more a condition than preferring beer over vodka. Also, I tend to support a twin explanation of both inherited and environmental causes, though with the latter overwhelmingly more explanatory, i.e. 90%)
I recall a comedian (name forgotten) who suggested that you could open the Christmas edition of the JC Penny catalog, turn to any page you like, pick an image of something on that page and someone somewhere wants to have sex with that item.
Which reminds me; I learned in an advertising class I took at Brigham Young University (long time ago), that sex sells - particularly to guys (right, guys?).
And in response to Pope Paul; I have had my letters-to-the-editor published supporting individual sexual preference but, honestly, swishy speach and mannerisms are a put-on and annoying, in my opinion.
By the way I tend to watch your posts closely, you are one of the more contemplative individuals I have had the fortune to interact with. It's good to be back.
A funny story if I may and I apologize for straying a bit off topic. I went to a bar a few years ago I had not been to in eons. In my youth this was a nice place to have a few drinks and shoot pool so for old time sake I decided to go. I took a seat at the bar and ordered a drink prior to looking around the place and before my drink had come I was hit on. Were you to see me in person you would understand my surprise, what was even more surprising was that the person doing the hitting was a male. I recall as once being momentarily confused, thinking he was joking possibly. He was in actuality quite serious, I politely turned him down with the standard "Thank you but I'm straight" response, to which he looked at me rather strangely. It was at this point where the backdrop slowly came into view, my favorite hangout had become a gay bar. I had by this time received my drink and since having already paid, decided to finish it but I intentionally took my time so as to take in the environment a bit. After leaving I recall personally analyzing two feelings, one being that of insult at someones assumption that I "look" gay and secondly (and slightly more embarrassingly) somewhat hurt that I, despite or due to my aforementioned anatomical deficiencies only got hit on once. I called a gay friend of mine to joke about the whole scenario when I got home and was told, in regards to not being hit on, gays have a type of gaydar as well. Do you think he said that just to make me feel better?
In my experience, not at all. Gay guys find straight guys as attractive as rocks, or at least as attractive as straight guys find gays (at least that's what I've been told a few times).
I'm occasionally being hit on by gays myself as I am a bit flamboyant (Bryan Ferry/Roxy Music is highly under-appreciated). I take it as one of the greatest compliments I can get, seeing as gays are usually more straight forward in propositioning and have good taste, and usually excuse the fact that I am not, and then buy them a drink.
I have on occasion gone to an Oslo gay bar with a buddy of mine when we were feeling a bit down. Nothing boosts the ego quite as much as being picked up by a dozen guys in a few hours!
Looks like a fun place.
No need to worry about derailing, the object of a good discussion is to get out personal opinion and the very reasons why you think/believe what you do (at least that's my opinion). Thank you for sharing.
One thing tho, as for the statement:
"And how am I supposed to find a GirlFriend if I am seen with Gay guys holding hand? :)"
In my experience, going out with gay guys actually makes girls seek you out, as opposed to having to chase them. Gay guys are, in fact, the perfect wingmen (and I've successfully winged a couple of gays too). Dunno why, my theory is, there is no competition and people want to have whatever's seemingly not on the market. ;)
if is psychological then a person would be able to change from homosexual to hetrosexual. I have done the therapy thing (psycholocial) it didn't work. I have acepted the fact that it is biological. Those people that say they have changed are liars to put it bluntly. There are stories out ther where the person is honest that they still haven't changed but choice not to "act out" their homoerotic feelings. Those people are religious.
I've thought about this myself, and from my remedial lay-person knowledge base, I'd say there appears to be a strong biological foundation, but also agree with others here that nurture and experience can play a part. What the percentage of each is, I have no clue.
My bigger interest in this topic isn't "is it nature or nurture" but does it really matter? Do we care because it matters, or because society tells us we are supposed to be concerned about a person's sexual orientation? As long as the participants are consenting adults, then my real answer to the question is "Sex is fun!"
I don't have a strong leaning toward either explanation. I feel that there could perhaps be a biological agent that leads to homosexuality. The existence of a 'gay gene' has long been studied and debated, but there hasn't really been enough research or evidence to support its existence. There could also be, as another mentioned, certain hormonal triggers that lead to behaviors and perhaps sexual orientation.
I think that in the end its more a psychological or environmental reason that develops homosexuality. The environment in which somebody grows up determines much about who they are, what they think, how they perceive the world, and, of course, sexual orientation. So, homosexuality is probably a result of a mix of many different causes, including nature and nurture.
All I know is it's incorrect to see homosexuality as some sort of 'mutation' or 'defect' among the species, which leads to a lot of derogatory and homophobic views which are just not helpful.
Does it really matter? Here's what I mean. If someone hates homosexuals, telling them it's biological won't change their mind. They'll simply view it as an inherited birth defect.
To those who don't hate homosexuals, accepting the argument that "I always knew I preferred men" (implying a biological component, opens one to the argument, "Well, okay, but suppose someone knew he preferred children or horses as long as he can remember and believes he was born a pedophile or bestial?"
Does it the come down to we approve of homosexuals but not pedophiles and bestials? I guess it may. Perhaps cultural relativity applies to our choice of deviancies as it does to many other things.
I do agree that it doesn't really matter. It's fairly insignificant whether it's psychological or biological, as it won't change anyone's mind on the matter.
I don't think it can at all be related to beastiality or pedophilia though. Homosexuality is completely victimless, which is why it doesn't make any sense for people to consider it a deviance.