Are homosexuals ‘born that way?'
And should we consider them a ‘minority group' as a result?
By Donald Hill
The push for legislation that would bar discrimination, and secure spousal benefits, adoption rights, and even marriage privileges for same-sex couples, springs from the assumption that homosexuals are born that way, and are therefore a legitimate minority group. If it can be shown that this hypothesis is unsound it should be exposed for what it is; an error that encourages an ungodly lifestyle.
An article written by Simon LeVay, a San Francisco neuroanatomist, was published in the August 1991 issue of the journal Science. It reported that autopsies had revealed the cluster of cells known as the hypothalamus in the brains of homosexual men was twice as large by volume as in heterosexual men. It was assumed that the homosexual men were born with the larger hypothalamus, and that this in fact was the cause of their homosexuality. However, on-going research does not support either of these earlier conclusions.
There is accumulating evidence that certain types of sexual activity and other life experiences may cause not only psychological but even organic changes within the individual. Paul commented on this in the first century, and wrote "And men likewise gave up natural relations with women, and were consumed with passion for one another, men committing shameful acts with men and receiving in their own persons the due penalty for their error" (Romans 1:27, RSV). Recent studies done with rats showed that sexual experience caused anatomical differences in their nervous systems. Psychologist Marc Breedlove of the University of California at Berkeley tells us that when scientists report certain anatomical features of the brain tend to differ between gay people and heterosexuals "...it's not at all certain that these differences cause differing sexual behaviour." He says "Maybe it's the other way around, with sexual behaviour causing the anatomical differences." Dr. Breedlove presented the results of the rat studies in the October, 1999 issue of the journal Nature.
Researchers at the University College of London's Institute of Neurology, have compared the brains of 16 cab drivers with those of 50 other people, all healthy right-handed males in the same age group. It was found that the longer the cabbies had driven through the notorious maze of London's streets the larger the part of the brain associated with the ability to navigate - the rear hippocampus. It seems the drivers' brains adapted to help them store a detailed map of the city, shrinking in one area to allow growth in another, according to the report in the March 2000 issue of the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. "Direct stimulation of the brain in the environment appears to produce changes in the brain," said Dr. Eleanor Maguire, lead author of the report.
God holds human beings responsible for their actions. Our choice alone decides what we will do. Identical twins are an example of this. Identical twins form when the egg, during the initial divisions following fertilization, separates and produces two embryos. Identical twins begin life with genes from the same egg and the same sperm. Studies have shown that if one of a pair of identical twins is a homosexual there is only a fifty per cent chance that both would be homosexuals. If genes decided our sexual orientation, both would be homosexuals if one was, since both have the same genes. The fact that one was not shows that choice is involved.
If homosexuals are born that way, how do we explain the people who were heterosexuals for years before becoming homosexuals? There have been men who fell in love with women, married and fathered children. There have also been women who married, and their husbands testify that they were responsive and passionate lovers within the marriage. If these men and women could be sexually aroused by the opposite gender for years, their decision to leave the marriage and live with someone of the same sex is obviously a matter of choice.
If homosexuals are born that way, how do we explain the fact that there are ex-gays? There are men and women who have broken free from homosexuality, are married, and now have families of their own. Those who are born into a minority group do not change. Why would they want to? Who ever heard of an ex-aboriginal, and ex-black, or an ex-Jew?
If homosexuals are born that way, how do we explain their numerical increase in recent years? If it were of genetic origin there would be no noticeable increase in the number of homosexuals just as there is no noticeable increase in the number of left-handed people.
But compare it to drug abuse (an acquired behaviour). Suppose we were to eliminate all the laws that forbid the sale, possession, and use of mood-altering drugs. Then we introduce courses in our schools that teach drug use is a normal lifestyle for those who feel so inclined, and those who disagree may be suffering from something called drug phobia. Finally, we provide counselling for students who wish to "come out" and begin using drugs, so they can be their true psychedelic selves. Would there not be an increase in drug abuse? You bet there would be! Not because more drug abusers were being born, but because more people were acquiring the behaviour.
In a 1978 study 43 per cent of male homosexuals were found to have had 500 or more sexual partners, and 28 per cent claimed a thousand or more partners. Seventy-nine per cent of men said that more than half of their partners were strangers.
Another study in 1992 shows that pedophilia (sex with children) is three times more common among homosexuals. Little wonder with homosexual organizations like the North American Man-Boy Love Association (NAMBLA) actively promoting pedophilia as an acceptable form of sex, and homosexual periodicals such as the San Francisco Sentinel, which published an article arguing that pedophilia is central to the male homosexual life, and The Journal of Homosexuality, which devoted an entire issue to pedophilia, advocating it as an acceptable expression of sexuality for gay people.
Homosexuality is forbidden by the Torah, and condemned in the New Testament. For this reason it has always been prohibited by both Jews and Christians - at least by those who believe their own scriptures. The Mosaic law called it an "abomination," and prescribed the death penalty (Leviticus 18:22, 29). Paul said homosexual practices lead to a "reprobate mind," and those who engage in such behaviour will not "inherit the kingdom of God" (Romans 1:24-28 and 1 Corinthians 6:9-10).
Any effort to accommodate the gay lifestyle is a slippery slope into the depth of human depravity. Encouraged by past successes, homosexual organizations are now lobbying the government to have the age of consent lowered, and to decriminalize other conduct that is presently illegal. Until then, law enforcement is being asked to turn a blind eye to behaviour they would not tolerate among heterosexuals.
Donald Hill is an ordained minister in the Pentecostal Assemblies of Canada and director of Living Hope Ministries, P.O. Box 523 Orillia, Ont. L3V 6K2.