47,000 for coffee gene, 36 for “gay” gene?
I dislike people who take tidbits of alleged evidence and mold it into a concrete theory stated as stone-cold fact that makes no sense, and ignores any information that might pertain to the matter that disabuses them of their preconceived notion. Then here we have a man, this Joseph Nicolosi, in his book “Preventing Homosexuality” who does it with an insouciance that is incredible. And sad, for the man is supposedly learned, what with his loudly proclaimed “Ph.D.” on the front cover. In a chapter entitled “Born this way?” he outdoes himself in ways I can’t fathom being called “scholarship” or intellectual. Let us take a look:
He starts off this chapter with a statement by one Dr. Simon LeVay. Nicolosi puts it in italics, in a sort of four line poetic nature. The good doctor told the truth, and Mr. Nicolosi uses it to discount all theories of gay genetics, as if the doctor was simply the be-all and end-all of the issue. The quote: “It’s important to stress what what I didn’t find. I did not prove that homosexuality was genetic … I didn’t show that gay man were born that way, the most common mistake people make in interpreting my work.” Well, indeed, all of this is true. It’s true because LeVay is not a genetic scientist, he’s a forensic medical doctor. He didn’t look at genes, he looked at the physical brains of exactly 36 (yes, thirty-six, and no more,) men who died of AIDS. He didn’t look at any molecular or genetic structures – he looked at the physical mass of the brains. He didn’t set out to prove anything, but merely wished to examine the brains of the dead AIDS sufferers and how they might or might be different than the brains of the dead of non-AIDS deaths. He had no prior theory or thesis that the brains would be different or the same. He wasn’t searching for anything in particular – he merely put AIDS brains next to non-AIDS brains and compared the two. There was absolutely nothing genetic about any portion of the tiny study.
But what LeVay did find was that the hypothalamus of the AIDS brains were smaller, by more than half, of the non-AIDS brains. The AIDS brains were perhaps of gay men – that part was, in fact, unknown. The non-AIDS brains were also unknown to be from gay men or not. Indeed, gayness wasn’t the reason for the study whatsoever. The brains were not chosen because of gay or straight men who died. In fact, it was merely assumed that the AIDS men were gay and the non-AIDS were straight, for the study was done in 1991 – when genetics was such a new science that few knew anything. Scientists were still working off of Mendel’s pea studies of the 1700s for heaven’s sake. There was no conclusions drawn from the study, other than that, yes, indeed, in 36 out of 36 brains the AIDS’ hypothalamus was half the size or smaller than the non-AIDS. It was posited at the time that this size difference could have been present pre- or post- AIDS. That is, the AIDS might have caused the shrinkage, or it might not have. Every other part of the two sets of brains were also examined, the report, technical in nature, was lengthy.
And this is where the trouble starts for Mr. Nicolosi. He jumps from the truth given by LeVay and in the very first sentence attacks Ann Landers! Yes, oh yes, the advice columnist is the source of Nicolosi’s pain, for she “misled millions of Americans when she repeated that unsubstantiated theory” that “gays are born, not made.” Well, since not ever has a study of genetics of gay men been done, I guess no theory could be substantiated or not. Ah, but Nicolosi is now sure that because the non-genetic LeVay’s non-genetic study of nothing genetic whatsoever, this means there’s no gay gene or genes. That’s an astounding conclusion of breathtaking intellectual dishonesty. And why does Nicolosi so discount LeVays’ finding that the hypothalamus of the AIDS brains were smaller, as they indeed were? Why, LeVay is a gay guy! He’s biased! He’s corrupt and has an agenda – why, he’s an “activist.” Egad. And what is Nicolosi? He’s an, um, activist, with an ax to grind against gay men that is pathological. So from the non-genetic study by a gay man of physical brains, Nicolosi has reinforced his preconceived theory that there is no gay gene. That’s not science, it’s not genetics, it’s political mush, an agenda even.
Then Nicolosi goes on to point out the nitwits in the media, none of whom are scientists, none of whom are geneticists, and probably few of which ever even heard of Mendels’ pea studies three centuries ago, misinterpreted LeVay’s findings. Well, blow me down – media nitwits, with IQ’s lower than their body temperature made egregious mistakes. I guess that’s never happened before, eh?
Then, LeVay, who acted alone in his studies, (oh, sure, perhaps some lab assistants, I’ll grant) is now morphed into Nicolosi’s “the scientists (plural!) whose research supposedly proved ‘born that way’ theory now agree it’s a myth.” And that’s not what LeVay or any scientist or scientists ever said – what they said was that the study of physical brains had no relationship to a genetic study, and no genetic study was done. And while it might be a “myth” to Nicolosi that people are born gay – there is simply no substantiated evidence one way or the other – for the not-so-strange reason that no one has yet looked. So Nicolosi concludes based on one study of 72 brains by a man who wasn’t even looking for anything, but merely looking at a thing, that ergo it’s a “myth” and that’s been disproved. Astounding mush from an alleged learned man who seeks to change the world by preventing “homosexuality.” Can anything be more absurd?
Then, Nicolosi delves deeper into his own myth creation, oh yes. He writes, “The author of “My Genes Made Me Do It” … wait – and who is this wondrous author? Beats me – Nicolosi doesn’t bother to give us a name, he’s anonymous, perhaps. Maybe he’s Nicolosi himself for all I know. Ah, the unknown author is quoted at length, helpfully explaining “… how the biological research has been misinterpreted.” Yes, well, biological, schmogilogical – biology, though related, is not genetic studies. Ah, the quote: “A constant stream of media articles – several per year – assures us that there is a link between homosexuality and biological features. These articles mention genes, brains structure, hormone levels in the womb, ear characteristics, fingerprint styles, finger lengths, verbal skills … (his dots, not mine) and by the time you read this, some others may have appeared. Genes are responsible for an indirect influence, but on average, they do not force people into homosexuality. This conclusion has been well known in the scientific community for a few decades, but has not reach the general public.” And I laugh, and gnash my teeth, and want to lunge and throttle this unknown author. Let us parse the mush.
First there has been no “constant stream” – constant implies regularly, steadily, like in a “constant rain.” Second: “several per year” – there have been but a dozen studies that have made the press since LeVay. Several a year? Are they kidding? Oh let me see their bibliography of this one – I counted – I came up with a dozen. Sometime in the recent past I even wrote about all of them in a single blog post – after I learned from the media that the US Government spent untold millions of dollars researching the genes of 47,000 – yes, forty-seven thousand! – European heritage males (aka, white guys) for a friggin’ coffee gene. And they found it! Yes, European males have the most astounding genetic capacity for drinking endless cups of coffee to stay up at night to wonder about something or other due to some evolutionary genetic quirk – and LeVay? He looked at 36, or 72, brains without a genetic anything in sight. Yes, nothing says rational than comparing those two studies, eh? And nothing says the importance to which the US government attaches to the relative merits of coffee drinking and the grave and dangerous and dire threat of “homosexuality,” eh? The US government, funds source for nearly all genetic studies one way or the other, hasn’t seen fit yet to study the genes of 47 gay men, never mind 47,000 of us.
And what of the dozen studies, which come in a mythological constancy of several per year? Each of these studies were done once. Each of the dozen used less than 90 gay men and 90 straight men to note any differences. One merely flashed photos of gay and straight men to straight folks to see if we gay scan be spotted – well, apparently, with near 70% accuracy, the heteros could spot the gay men in a nanosecond. That study was never done again! Each showed some differences, but made no conclusions as to why. Each was never done on a larger scale, nor ever done again, or replicated. For instance, finger length – one university in Sweden looked at some 90 gay and 90 straight men and noticed that the finger lengths were different in nearly every case. This is the “science” of “homosexuality” which Nicolosi and the unknown author (is there a monument to him, like the unknown soldier?) now use to say “nope, no gay gene.” Looking at fingers is not genetic studies.
No study has ever looked at hormone levels in the womb – not one scientific study – it’s a theory, not science, for heaven’s sake. Anything to avoid a “gene” of course. But still – some folks postulated that maybe, just maybe, some hormonal wash did the hetero-babe in and made him gay. How could such a study even be done? You can’t go back and look at the hormones in the womb of the current gay men, that’s for sure. That’s um, water out the vagina. Nor could one go around asking pregnant woman, “Say, mind if we study your prenatal hormones over the next few months till baby born and check back in 25 years and see if you got a gay son?” I can’t imagine such a thing, can you? Indeed, the theory is simply unprovable for it can’t be studied in any rational way. The whole thing is preposterous to even be called “science.”
What other studies? Verbal skills? Nothing like “genes” in verbal skills for sure. I know glib heteros, glib homos, and tongue tied morons of both sorts for that matter. How that’s remotely related to gayness could never be shown. That somebody “studied” this is silly in the first degree. Then, too, since gayness is worldwide, rather an epidemic of the exact same percentage everywhere, of course, it would require some massive database of so many languages and gay and straight men as to be beyond current abilities of anyone. The idea is a theory, nothing more. It’s not a “scientific study.”
Now, this last sentence I have to return to, reiterate even, for it’s beyond the pale of endurance for any thinking person: Genes are responsible for an indirect influence, but on average, they do not force people into homosexuality. This conclusion has been well known in the scientific community for a few decades, but has not reach the general public.” – So, the “gene” idea is a “myth,” says Nicolosi, and then he quotes the unknown that “genes are responsible for an “indirect influence”? He can’t be serious, can he? Alas, he is, sadly. He’s playing “gene, no gene,” whichever suits his fancy. What is this indirect influence? How indirect is it? He’s already noted the “sissy boy” effeminate male syndrome – my my, nothing says “psychology” than having a physically obviously sissy boy around eh? No doubt his weak or absent father caused the slight frame and lack of hair follicles, right?
Meanwhile, no gene study of gayness has ever been done, ergo, it’s a theory – and there’s lots of them. Ah, but the myth is clear – those genes “on average” – how can one average the unquantified? We don’t even know how many gay men there are. Mind boggling. Ah, these mythical genes don’t “force” anyone “into homosexuality” – hey, I thought we choose to be gay? Isn’t that part of the myth too? Sure it is. You can’t have politicians, all alleged geniuses, and many a clergyman, well learned I’m sure, going around saying “gay is a choice” all the time, and then anyone being “forced into” anything, can you? Were we forced to make the choice by some indirect method? Sure we were – why, it’s commonly said by many in the general public that we were recruited, abused, beaten, molested and well as lured, and pushed by absent or weak fathering, and Lord knows what else into the choice of gayness. The whole sentence, though made of English words in grammatical order, is simply arrant garbage. It should be taken out and shot.
The audacity of the second sentence in this quote is nothing short of a man who murders his parents than tells the judge to go easy on him for he’s an orphan. The scientific community has spent virtually zero hours studying gayness – oh, they study “homosexuality” forever – and what do they conclude? Everything and anything – there’s so much mush on the subject that the word “conclusion” just can’t be used. The Journal of Homosexuality (yes, Virginia, there is such a thing,) is so filled with differing conclusions that up is down, and left and right, and in and out, too, while down is out and up and in and around; squares are circles and circles are straight lines, also. Meanwhile everything is true, and none of it is. Take a pick, it’s like a smorgasbord already. Not one paper in that journal comes to a conclusion more solid than “beats us.” Why, even “Largely unexplained” is ripe upon the lips of theologians. Oh, some have “conclusions” – Nicolosi has one himself, or several really – it’s a gene, but it isn’t – biological but psychological too. Ptolemy had less concentric circles around the sun to explain why the earth is the center of the cosmos than these people have gay theories.
But does anyone have a real conclusion, in the sense of empirically provable? Absolutely not. Hell, just a “few decades” ago the scientific community was pumping gay men with testosterone. Turns out, maybe, we have more than heteros, and that was proven in one study, never replicated, by the state of Tennessee back in the early 1970s, when they dragged gay men into psycho wards and got their needles out and shot us up – without ever bothering to look first to see what the T-levels might be before the injections! It was merely assumed “lack of testosterone! Pump ’em up! Science? It wasn’t science, it was madness. Then they did look first, after we got more gay, if that’s possible, after the T-shots, and lo, we got more testosterone, so both the shots and the obvious point of starting a study were quickly shelved – and back to the myths. Meanwhile, as Nicolosi admits himself, gayness is still a psychological condition, and psychiatric too, of course. He has no interest in finding a gene(s) whatsoever.
Meanwhile, the general public is so bumfuddled on the issue that if you take 10 people and ask them – “Why gays?” – you get 20 answers. In fact, I did exactly that – I got the chance to ask some 450 heteros on one website why they thought gayness existed – the answers are so all over the place that the only conclusion that can be drawn is that no one has a clue. And yet, like the best myths – it’s all true, and all false. But it is believed, on faith.
Then he brings up twin studies – or, well, makes reference to the few that have been done. They are looking for “exact” matches for gayness in twins – for they concluded first – identical twins must be both gay, or both straight, for twins are “identical.” Yes, well, that is still so inconclusive one can only marvel that anyone can come up with a conclusion. And what of this alleged “identical” twin stuff? Well, it turns out that “identical twins” each have different fingerprints! I dare say, that’s not exactly “identical” at all, yes? And in my own rather unscientific study I once dated twins. I’m aware of a certain feature of those two “identical twins” rather identical um, physical attributes that dangle between their thighs. And let me tell you – they were not identical whatsoever. Not in shape, length, form, girth or any other feature which my close examination could discern. So much for that myth.
And so what I conclude is that Nicolosi, and all who think and pose like him, are essentially frauds with an agenda. Sorry guys, you is nuts. You don’t deserve to hold your licenses to practice anything. But do let me know when you pull together 47,000 of us gay guys to see if we have something along the lines of the proven “coffee gene.” I can’t wait.
- Posted in: Uncategorized