"Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free."
"When we live authentically we create an opportunity for others to walk out of their dark prisons of pretend into freedom."
I could not select an answer in the poll because I simply don't know, and selecting "Maybe/Don't know" is actually a skewed "yes" answer rather than a purely neutral "Don't know" answer.
I would have selected "Don't know" because while I believe the answer is probably yes I am not completely certain. The uncertainty does not come from a belief that homosexuality is not a valid form of sexuality. It comes from an understanding that there are many factors which come into play in human sexuality before any human engages in sexual activity.
I believe that since homosexuality has not only occurred throughout every era of human development, the fact that is does occur amongst other animal species tends to lean towards the possibility of some form of genetic imperative. I also think that as human children develop, environmental factors occuring during the socialization process may come into play. Ultimately, once a human reaches a stage of sexually functional physicality, there still remains a choice on how to act sexually.
Consider these examples for each of my points.
Evidence garnered from the studies of history and anthropology shows that same-sex activity has existed in every type of human culture, from tribal groupings up through highly civilized nation-states. Furthermore, biological studies of various denizens of the Animal Kingdom have demonstrated same-sex activity patterns among several species of Primates (monkeys, gorilla, etc) as well as species of rodents, insects, wolves, dogs, even dolphins. This tends to indicate a genetic trend that goes beyond simple "choice."
In terms of social environmental factors, there is resistance to religious and cultural pressure to comform that would otherwise tend to compel obedience to social norms and away from a socially negative "choice" to act out unacceptable sexual behaviors. There is no statistical evidence supporting belief systems convinced that homosexuality is driven by experience of child sexual abuse, neglect, economic deprivation, non-nuclear family guidance, or any other socio-economic situation; both heterosexual and homosexual youth share those environments.
Finally, when humans reach the age where they can physically participate in sex, they can still chose how to act on this. We have heterosexuals who may experiment and then reject not only same-sex activity but ALL sexual activity for one reason or another. We have homosexuals who may experience heterosexual encounters and continue to participate in such encounters or also reject ALL sexual activity for one reason or another. For the most part both heterosexuals and homosexuals will act "normally" as their sexual desires compel them, with heterosexuals seeking heterosexual relationships and homosexuals seeking homosexual relationships.
Having sifted through all this evidence myself over the years, I have come to believe that it is not truly a choice. However I acknowledge that there may be factors I am unaware of and so I may be wrong. Therefore I would pick "I Don't Know" with the caveat that it does not really matter to me whether it is a choice or not, because as long as all parties engaged in such activities are willing and able then it is perfectly alright with me.
Last edited by Captain Adverse; 06-27-13 at 12:20 AM.
Last edited by USNavySquid; 06-27-13 at 12:34 AM.
Several people mentioned that environmental factors may be involved. So here's a hypothetical: A group of children are born and raised in a controlled environment, where absolutely no messages or hints or modeling of sexual behavior or romantic behavior occurs. No gender roles are modeled. Up until adolescence they are blank slates as far as those things. Puberty and curiosity hit. Exploring and normal sexual development. What will happen? hetero, homo or bi? Will it vary according to the individual kid?
"Never fear. Him is here" - Captain Chaos (Dom DeLuise), Cannonball Run
Mace Windu: Then our worst fears have been realized. We must move quickly if the Jedi Order is to survive.
Last edited by USNavySquid; 06-27-13 at 04:17 AM.