Hardwired for Homosexuality?
By Charles Colson
By now, you've no doubt heard about the latest attempt
to use biology to justify homosexuality. It started as an attempt
to prove the existence of human pheromones: chemicals, that is,
associated with sexual attraction in animals. Swedish scientists
exposed men and women to possible male and female pheromones,
respectively. When women were exposed to male pheromones, their
"hypothalamuses lit up." Likewise, male hypothalamuses
reacted when exposed to female pheromones.
Now, to put it in lay terms, this is the "smell test."
Males sniffed women and were attracted, and vice versa. But gay
men were exposed to both types of odors, and they were aroused
by men, not females.
At this point, what the research suggests is that human pheromones
may indeed exist. But what caused the preferences—nature
or nurture—is not known. You wouldn't know that, however,
from media accounts. It sounds like homosexuality is "hardwired":
the product of nature, not nurture. Time magazine and
the New York Times both quoted Dean Hamer of NIH, who
wrote a book on the "gay gene," saying that the study
"clearly substantiates" the existence of that "hardwiring."
It's true that Time magazine explicitly states that
the study "doesn't show that … sexual preference is
biologically hardwired." But it immediately undermines that
assertion by relegating those who don't believe in such hardwiring
as belonging to the "religious right."
Someone else who couldn't wait to herald the study as a breakthrough
is Steven Pinker of Harvard. Pinker is the author of The Blank
Slate: The Modern Denial of Human Nature. Like Time,
Pinker begins in a major New York Times op-ed by noting
that the differences in brain response don't "prove that
homosexuality is innate," but he ends by invoking those scary
religious types. Along the way, he acknowledges the obvious: "Any
genetic tendency to avoid heterosexual opportunities should have
been selected out long ago."
Of course—any gene that led men to prefer men as sexual
partners would have led to the extinction of its carriers. In
Darwinist terms, homosexuality is "evolutionarily maladaptive."
Given this tension between evolutionary biology and the requirements
of political correctness, Pinker is forced to speculate about
what, if anything, could reconcile the two.
So he repeats the word perhaps over and over, and then he skates
around the question of Darwinism and morality—a minefield,
by the way, for Darwinists—and then, of all things, suggests
a possible evolutionary cause for "homophobia." If you're
confused, you're not the only one. Pinker's floundering is what
happens when you are trying to please two equally jealous gods.
Ironically, such a conundrum isn't necessary. Neuroscientists
have long known that the connection between the brain and human
behavior is a two-way street. The patterns observed in the hypothalamuses
of gay men are just as likely to be an effect of their sexuality
as a cause of it.
Now, both the Times and Time noted this—and
yet they couldn't resist running with the "gay gene"
angle. Likewise, they know that a genetic predisposition, if one
exists, to behave a certain way isn't a moral license.
But when it comes to "gay rights," none of this seems
to matter. Instead, they commit the same offense they accuse Christians
of committing: sacrificing science on the altar of ideology.
More from Charles Colson on CBN.com
From BreakPoint, Copyright 2005 Prison Fellowship
with Chuck Colson" is a radio ministry
of Prison Fellowship Ministries. Reprinted with permission of
Prison Fellowship, P.O. Box 17500, Washington, DC, 20041-0500."
Heard on more than 1000 radio stations nationwide. For more information
on the ministry of Chuck Colson and Prison Fellowship visit their
web site at http://www.breakpoint.org.
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