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December 01, 2011

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In modern times some gay men still father children through in vitro technology, so that may offset reproductive declines from lack of a social expectation of heterosexual marriage.

I've read that homosexuals tend to be much more givings to their nieces and nephews than is typical of heterosexuals.

Kinsey always suggested few people are 100% gay or straight. In other societies throughout history going both ways was a lot more common.

That should read aren't 100%. Damn iphone

It might not be genetic, it may be the result of something that happened developmentally in utero, or in childhood. But there are plenty of genetic abnormalities that aren't adaptive either, and they haven't died out - cerebral palsy, Tay-Sachs disease, etc. Did these serve an adaptive purpose once? Or are genetic freaks a simple (and unfortunate) fact of life?

I'm skeptical of a 'born that way' thesis with sexual attraction, because:

1) sexual attraction is expressed in a lot of different ways (see rule 34)
2) there have been societies where same-sex attraction was dominate

Born-that-way is just too simplistic for what is a very complex phenomenon.

BTW, you're nuts if you think that Trig is not Sarah's baby.

Additionally, the sisters of homosexuals tend to have higher reproductive success. The idea is just that homosexual genes make one more horny re: men. Daughters do better, sons play support.

Remember its the genes and the genes only that count. Its probably almost always bad to have a gay son. If helping is really so good it seems to make more sense just to have a helpful straight son. Maybe in some very low resource situations... but its really marginal.

But if you are the woman carrying these genes you'll have more reproductive success. You can't filter out the gay gene when you have a son, and you can't entirely stop having sons. Although you probably should have more daughters than sons, which would be a good study. Sorry rambling.

Wait no, it should be are. Blast double negatives

"Kinsey always suggested few people are 100% gay or straight."

So what? He was a pervert who made shit up.

"Regarding homosexuality, it’s self-evidently a maladaptive trait. People who only practice homosexuality would not pass on their genes to the next generation."

My girlfriend's friend and former boss is a homosexual who has a biological child (a lesbian friend of his asked him to donate sperm). That sort of thing is probably more common than you think.

Homosexuality could be a side effect of genes producing masculinization or feminization. A gene that makes a manlier man (who sleeps around and produces more offspring) might get itself passed on even if it tends to make women carrying it lesbians.

Not sure about the advantages of gay genes. Most likely the increased social skills from feminization are useful. A lot of artists, musicians, etc. have slept around a lot, so maybe if you get only one copy you're an artist who can seduce women into bed, resulting in increased gene frequency. ;)

You're totally misguided with homosexual issues, not only do they support related siblings, nieces and nephews, but they are allowed to adopt under civil unions and can even use their sperm to create test tube designer babies as Jokah mentioned.

Modern tech will perpetuate or even increase this inherited "trait" or adaptation. The only factor leading to their general demise would have been the increased exposure to AIDs due to the nature of their lifestyle.

Hey Sig, you're forgetting that we not only pass our genes through our children but also through our brothers and sisters (so to speak), as Dan above suggested.
Only 40% of males passed their genes on historically anyway. Now imagine there was a gene that somehow made females have more kids, so that they would have more progeny and their daughters had more progeny as well. The only downside was that their sons would have less progeny (by being gay for example) if the advantage to daughters was greater than the disadvantage to sons, the gene would still be passed on.

This aerospace engineer defends Sullivan and suggests HBD is hardly surprising:

"One wouldn’t have thought it possible, but I actually largely agree with Andrew Sullivan. The notion that intelligence is not heritable is ludicrous, and if it is, the notion that every “race” is going to be equivalent in that regard is equally so."

http://www.transterrestrial.com/?p=38761

There's a better explanation for the genetic adaptiveness of homosexuality. It may be the case that there's a gene for being attracted to men. Women with a particularly strong expression of this gene are more likely to have children — when male children inherit the gene, they would be (more) gay; when female children inherit the gene, they'd be that much more likely to birth and raise more children. In this light, gayness would not be adaptive for the genes of the gay male, but it would be adaptive for the genes of the mother of the gay male. (Swap out the appropriate words for the analogous adaptive lesbian gene.)

"Regarding homosexuality, it’s self-evidently a maladaptive trait. People who only practice homosexuality would not pass on their genes to the next generation."

"A biological error" said Dr. Laura, and oh boy did she get into a lot of trouble over that little remark.

"there have been societies where same-sex attraction was dominate"

Were there? I know that same-sex attraction was not looked down upon in some societies (such as most ancient Greek city-states), but I can't think of any society where it was predominant.

Haha, still trying to stretch Darwinism to explain the inexplicable. And they say we religious ones are nuts.

The "gay uncle" theory is just silly - there's no evidence gays are hyper-generous to their nieces and nephews - and they'd have be quite generous to make up for their reproductive shortfall.

And there's little evidence for any of the other grand theories being bandied about here as fact.

American conservatives don't like "it takes a village" stuff, but the explanation I heard for the homosexuality gene is that the gay uncle, who doesn't have children himself, is useful as a kind of spare parent if something happens to the biological parents, or if one of the biological parents is too tied up for whatever reason to do enough child-rearing.

"Therefore, the only reason why homosexual genes"

What homosexuality genes?

Homosexuality (which is a biological mystery for obvious reasons) is likely caused by some sort of hormonal quirk in the embryo's prenatal environment. Twin studies indicate homosexuality is only 35% genetic. The rest is environmental.

"Ironically, modern society’s openness to homosexuality will probably cause the number of gay people to decline."

Dienekes' recently mulled over an article which argued this same point, but Dienekes was dubious.

Peter Frost also has some great articles on homosexuality.

"Because of this, Andrew Sullivan has been accused of racism:"

I don't see why this is such a big revelation.

There were a number of conservatives who agreed with the Bell Curve when it was first published in 1994. Sullivan (to the extent he ever was a conservative) was only one of numerous other conservative columnists who were open to the Bell Curve.

"I think that gay people are natural supporters of HBD,"

Gay people are, like women, relatively too egocentric to think about anything except their own individual dramas (on average).

And I mean this quite literally because neurological studies indicate homosexual brains have somehow been "feminized", i.e., homosexual brains function similar to female brains.

"it may be the result of something that happened developmentally in utero,"

It is caused by some sort of unknown in utero phenomena. Twin studies have shown homosexuality is only 35% genetic.

I think the gay uncle theory is valid, especially if gays are more likely to be rich and talented (I.e. Michael Jackson) and thus have families who can increase their genetic fitness by leaching off the rich uncle for generations.

But there's also evidence that the more older brothers a man has, the more likely he is to be homosexual (I.e. Michael Jackson) so this would be a prenatal effect. Either way males are born gay (females are probably more fluid)

There's also evidence that pedophiles are more likely to pray on children of the same sex. This puts a disturbing twist on the gay uncle theory because perhaps some gay men do spend a lot more time helping to raise their nephews, but for all the wrong reasons.

Undiscovered Jew, saying homosexuality is only 35% genetic is probably a huge underestimate. The reason is being gay or straight are treated like discrete binary categories. If they measured sexuality on a perfect continuum much like we measure IQ, we would probably find a far higher correlation between sexuality and genes. Continuous measure yield higher correlations than discrete ones.

"Haha, still trying to stretch Darwinism to explain the inexplicable. And they say we religious ones are nuts."

Yes. Old Testament God created homosexuals. Because he hates homosexuality. Wait, what?


People who talk about gays being born that way should remember the history. A generation ago, the whole 'born that way' theme didn't exist but it emerged since as a way to don the garments of victimhood.

Now we learn, horrifyingly to me anyway, that 30% of men in rural Brazil have had sex with animals.

http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1743-6109.2011.02512.x/abstract

Born that way too?

It seems that basically human sexuality is very plastic and people can fixate on almost anything, from feet to whips and chains to fecal matter.

If by born that way, you mean born with an ability to fixate on anything you can imagine, well then yes, I suppose that is true.

Gays are only like 2% of the population yet the gay mafia and their allies in mass media have everyone believing half the population is gay.

Genetic theories of homosexuality always seemed ridiculous to me. Greg Cochran's pathogenic theory is the only one I've heard that makes sense in light of evolution.

Despite claims that homos make up 10% of the population they really only make up 2-3%. That's pretty small. With those numbers, it could be beneficial or it could just be an anomaly. But the net benefits couldn't be that high or there would be a lot more than 2-3%. People can speculate all they want. But until science uncovers the mechanism that causes it it's unlikely we'll be able to answer the other questions.

One thing that might make gay white men less religiously PC about race is that, as Sailer put it years ago, they're the "shock troops" of gentrification. A lot of them have moved into poor black neighborhoods and seen the quality of life drastically improve as blacks are priced out and SWPLs move in. This familiarity (not to mention investment risk) seems to make a lot of them pretty unsentimental about the underclass.

I read somewhere that everyone starts off as female when conceived, but then the males will eventually become males. The book suggested that maybe the transformation stopped after the male became physically a man and the wiring for being a man
in behavior wasn't completed for some reason, so the man was left with some female characteristics. I have no idea if it's true, but it's interesting. It may be one cause.

OMG, I thought a blog that dealt with HBD would have a readership who were familiar with the silly "explanations" of male homosexuality.
Evidently not, based on the number of commenters here who think the "gay uncle theory" has merit. It has been debunked again and again, guys. No, gay men do not provide more for their neices and nephews than straight uncles. (See Bailey's work).

For those of you wishing to read about that notion and the other common hypotheses you see bandied about on the web, you might as well read about it from a guy with a whole lot of street cred in the area of evolutionary biology.

So, try this link, a which offers a compilation of many posts and one interview with Greg Cochran. You might not buy into his pathogen hypothesis (I do--he and Ewald have beren right about all kinds of things in this area), but at least you can read why so many other hypotheses thrown about (such as the gay uncle-as-provider idea) are so lacking in evolutionary logic, from a guy who knows more than your average bear(whoops, I didn't mean a gay "bear.")

Seriously, Cochran is good reading.

http://gc.homeunix.net/

excuse typos, please--sorry

***gay people are natural supporters of HBD,***

Just thinking about some politicians and writers in Europe they're probably also more likely to be opposed to islamic immigration and in the case of David Starkey, less pc about race in the recent UK riots.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2025554/David-Starkey-says-Enoch-Powell-right-infamous-rivers-blood-speech.html

@Twain

Actually, that's true. The "male" hormones don't kick in until a certain point in the pregnancy. Prior to that they are the same. I don't want to be too graphic. But the clitoris is formed from the same tissues that would have become the penis if the embryo had been exposed to “male” hormones.

There are genetic theories other than the gay uncle theory. For instance, there's the "too much of a good thing" theory -- think of sickle-cell anemia, where one copy of a gene gives you protection against malaria but two copies make you sick.

I'm not at all sure about born-this-way, personally. There are a huge number of straight adult men who had gay feelings and/or gay crushes during their teen years. For that reason alone, I'm leery of efforts to identify and reach out to gay teens -- I don't want anybody getting bullied and beaten up, but I also don't want normal kids badgered into thinking they're something they aren't.

I'd be happier with such efforts if they acknowledged the possibility that people can mature out of a gay phase. It happens; there are people who testify that it happened to them; but the most "tolerant" thing such a person is likely to hear is "You're really bi." Go, Team Tolerance! You can spend your youth thinking you're straight and then discover your gayness later in life, but never, *never* the other way around.

Just an note on sheep, the only mammal species other than man known to have a relatively high % of males attracted only to other males and the best animal model for studying this in humans.

Charles Roselli is an expert in pharmocology and the role of steroid hormones, and as a result, has done a lot of work studying the effects of androgens/estrogens, etc. and the differentiation of male and female brains in sheep and the related subject of why so many rams won't mount estrous ewes but will mount rams. In other words, he's the "gay sheep" expert.

Recently, he and his team established that the masculinization of the fetal ram's genitals takes place at an early stage in the womb, while the masculization of the brain takes place later in gestation. So, it makes sense that a ram (and a man, hypothetically) can have typically masculinized anatomical structures, but lack a fully masculizined brain if process 1 went smoothly, but process 2 faltered because of some problem with hormones.

However, if the reason for a ram mounting other rams while always dissing the ewes, an unproductive and futile means of spreading that ram's genes, is the result of an in utero failure by hormones to fully masculinize the fetal brain, we'd still have to ask, "Why has natural selection not taken care of this? Pregnant ewes, like pregnant women, invest a lot of energy in bringing little sheep into this world and when about 8% of a flock don't care to produce more little sheep, it seems MAMA EWE wasted her energy in producing that little stinker...what's CAUSING the hormonal problems that result in what are, in essence, "infertile" sheep?

When a woman winds up with polycystic ovary disease and can't get pregnant, when a man has slow-swimming sperm and can't get his wife pregnant, we don't say, "Oh, it's an evolutionary strategy or a side-effect of a strategy." No, we look to a more immediate, logical cause, don't we?

To say hormones are the final answer is far from sufficient. If we find that to be the case, we still have to ask, "What's preventing typical hormonization?"

I've read that gay men have larger genitalia and are more promiscuous. So their lack of interest in women may be negated by their greater promiscuity with both sexes, and the greater likelihood they have for impregnating the women they do bother sleeping with.

I was asked to provide some examples where homosexuality was dominant in a society.

Wikipedia describes same-sex couplings between an older man and a boy (pederasty) as being part of society. From other sources that I've read, everyone DID do it.

I had a textbook that cited a Polynesian tribe that had replenished itself by kidnapping children. Unfortunately, I no longer have it.

I had read a passage from Julius Ceasar about a Celtic tribe he came across where the men were homosexual, but still had wives in order to have children.

"I've read that gay men have larger genitalia and are more promiscuous. "

Obama's stimulus "package" just paid for a study on this very subject:

http://dailycaller.com/2011/07/18/feds-pay-for-study-of-gay-men%E2%80%99s-penis-sizes/

Theory said,

"I've read that gay men have larger genitalia and are more promiscuous. So their lack of interest in women may be negated by their greater promiscuity with both sexes, and the greater likelihood they have for impregnating the women they do bother sleeping with."

This is precisely the kind of silliness one reads on the web regarding this subject.

1. That "research" claiming gay men have larger genetalia has not been replicated and its results were compiled from the self-reports of gay men who measured themselves.

2. On the subject of male promiscuity? Consider, if you would, a society in which a straight male paid little or no cost for screwing around on his wife. In other words, pretend a wife wouldn't think of meeting him at the door with a basebal bat as he returned from one if his many trysts. In fact, imagine a society in which wives not only accepted such behavior but indulged it. Imagine a society in which the mothers of philandering straight men said, "Honey, I welcome more grandkids produced by those hussies." Imagine no condemnationfor such promiscuity by friends, neighbors, co-workers, and kids.

In other words, imagine no cost to the straight married man who acted out his fantasies to have variety in his choice of sex partners. No costly divorce or alimony, no severe judgement by society, no loss of love or respect from his wife and kids, and no loss of custody of his children.

In such a world, do you think most straight men wouldn't become sexually promiscuous as long as they could find willing females?

Of course they would.

Gay men are males. They have a strong sex drive like straight men (and unlike women), and they don't have to invest time and money finding willing sexual partners the way the average straight guy does. They also don't have to fear the loss of all the things a straight guy does when he strays. There's little cost for their promiscuity.

Okay, so there is this little thing called HIV, but they seem to have "covered" that.

Half Canadian:"I was asked to provide some examples where homosexuality was dominant in a society.

Wikipedia describes same-sex couplings between an older man and a boy (pederasty) as being part of society. From other sources that I've read, everyone DID do it.

I had a textbook that cited a Polynesian tribe that had replenished itself by kidnapping children. Unfortunately, I no longer have it.

I had read a passage from Julius Ceasar about a Celtic tribe he came across where the men were homosexual, but still had wives in order to have children.

1. Which society are you talking about?Pederasty is quite common in many societies where women are not readily available (cf modern Afghanistan).It is not the same as homosexuality.

2. Again, please name the "Polynesian" tribe to which you refer.

3. Gossip from Caesar is not evidence.

Syon,

While I agree that sexual relations between adults and teens are different than those between only adults, this is still a flavor of homosexuality. Male sexual attraction was geared towards males. This wasn't because of a lack of women, but considered a right of passage (per the Wikipedia entry:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Homosexuality_in_ancient_Greece

)

In regards to the Polynesian tribe, as I stated, I no longer have the textbook that I had learned this from. caveat emptor

However, while looking around, I found a site at the New International, at:

http://www.newint.org/features/1989/11/05/facts/

where a book is cited with the claim that in some Polynesian tribes, homosexuality is the norm. The book is Ritualized Homosexuality in Melanesia, edited by Gilbert Herdt. They cite the 1984 edition, and a later edition is available at Amazon.

I agree that historical records certainly have to be taken with a grain of salt, as with any claim (ie, Margaret Meade). I'm just throwing it out there.

Half Sigma are you unaware of Gregory Cochran and his theory that male homosexuality is caused by a pathogen? He makes a pretty strong case that the genetic model of homosexuality doesn't stand up to scrutiny on any empirical or logical grounds. This is a former physicist who turned himself into one the foremost experts in the world in human genetics. One of the theories that Cochran demolishes is the "Gay Uncle Theory". Cochran points out if evolution had selected for this, that you would see among gay uncles a concern for their biological nieces and nephews that matched that of their biological mothers, which clearly you do not.

"For instance, there's the "too much of a good thing" theory -- think of sickle-cell anemia, where one copy of a gene gives you protection against malaria but two copies make you sick."

Read Cochran. He addresses this.

http://gc.homeunix.net/home/post/42


Still a physicist, dammit.

Gay uncles would have to, on average, act in a way that caused four more nephews/nieces to survive than otherwise would have. Which, in a mostly Malthusian world, suggests that they must have superpowers. This tendency would have to be stronger and more effective than mother love, and at the same time, totally unnoticeable, since nobody has ever seen it.


Gcochran, the gay uncle would not have to be really caring or concerned about his relatives to increase their genetic fitness, he would only need to be really rich. Look at how talented gays are in the arts. Michael jackson made so much money (even after he died) that his extremely large extended family can live off him for centuries, although the bulk of the money appears to be going to the white kids he chose to raise as his own rather than to biological family.

Speaking of half sigma's theory of gays being natural believers in HBD, Michael Jackson appeared to be a huge believer, despite being black. His publicist bob jones claimed Jackson did not like to hire blacks and According to an anonymous letter by someone claiming to have personally known Jackson, he regarded blacks as intellectual inferior especially at business:


http://love.motion-forum.net/t1556-this-comment-will-smack-you-in-the-eye


He also told Martin bashire that when selecting a woman to be the mother of his kids, he wanted to know their intelligence level. Based on appearances, he did not use any black sperm or eggs to create any of his three kids.

There was one black woman who claims Jackson considered her worthy of donating eggs but she came from a family of doctors which one again underscores jackson's understanding of HBD:

http://www.thesun.co.uk/sol/homepage/news/2605269/Michael-Jackson-wanted-British-doctors-baby.html

She was not interested.

Jackson also said in many interviews that he felt blacks have the most rhythm of any race which once again shows his HBD ideology.

Uh, nobody cares about Jackson's "HBD ideology" and to use him as your example of a benevolent "gay uncle" is ridiculous. Do the math!

I support the statements posted above by erica, nuclearsummer, and gcochran. Follow erica's links to read more about gcochran's work. If there are rich gay benevolent uncles, there aren't nearly enough to explain the prevalence of male homosexuality. The "gay uncle" theory doesn't add up. Male homosexuality is caused by something else.

"Consider, if you would, a society in which a straight male paid little or no cost for screwing around on his wife. In other words, pretend a wife wouldn't think of meeting him at the door with a basebal bat as he returned from one if his many trysts. In fact, imagine a society in which wives not only accepted such behavior but indulged it. Imagine a society in which the mothers of philandering straight men said, "Honey, I welcome more grandkids produced by those hussies." Imagine no condemnationfor such promiscuity by friends, neighbors, co-workers, and kids."

You've described black America very accurately.

Hallie how do you know there aren't enough rich gay uncles to make the gay uncle theory plausible? No one knows how many super rich people are gay nor do they know how many super rich people were gay in past centuries. And the rare gay uncle who becomes super super rich can make up for thousands who contribute nothing to their nephews, gcochran only debunked the maternal gay uncle theory, he did not debunk my rich gay uncle theory.

Uh,

You're describing an untestable hypothesis. When these come around, it is customary to reject the null hypothesis.


Uh said,

"No one knows how many super rich people are gay nor do they know how many super rich people were gay in past centuries. And the rare gay uncle who becomes super super rich can make up for thousands who contribute nothing to their nephews, gcochran only debunked the maternal gay uncle theory, he did not debunk my rich gay uncle theory."


Hmmm, according to UH, I guess male sterility might be an evolutionary strategy or a side-effect of one since no one knows how many
super rich men were sterile in past centuries. And the rare sterile uncle who becomes super super rich can make up for thousands who are fertile and have their own children yet contribute nothing to their nephews/nieces or who do a poor job raising their own kids.

One problem (among many, many others), Uh: what makes you think heterosexual super, super rich uncles would be any less likely than super, super rich gay uncles to provide for extended family members?

By the way, have you any evidence that throughout the centuries, from society to society, homosexual men were richer than the average guy?

This topic brings about the craziest comments.

Ben, gays are stereotyped as being more talented in the arts than straights, and talented artists often become absurdly wealthy whether its through fasion, music, writing, acting or directing so it's not as if i pulled my theory out of thin air.

[HS: A tiny percentage of talented artists become absurdly wealthy. The overwhelmingly vast majority toil in obscurity, lucky to make middle-class incomes.]

Uh,

Add this to the evidence that the gay uncle as provider hypothesis has no supporting evidence.

http://dienekes.blogspot.com/2008/10/sexual-orientation-and-personal-income.html to the

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