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Born this way?


The article, No One is Born Gay (or Straight): Here Are 5 Reasons Why, posted on Social (In)Queery, presents a very sophisticated position on the complexities of sexual orientation, and refreshingly distinguishes between gender identity and sexual orientation. It is crucially important to let go of the assumptions that an individual’s identity dictates which category of other people that individual will be attracted to, and it’s encouraging to see this sexist heteronormative assumption dismantled.

From the article:

At the end of the day, what we can count on is that the science of sexual orientation will produce data that simply mirror the most crass and sexist gender binarisms circulating in the popular imagination. This research will report that women are innately more sexually fluid than men, capable of being turned-on by almost anything and everything (hmmm…. other than in Lisa Diamond’s research, where have I seen that idea before? Ah yes, heterosexual pornography.) It will report that men are sexually rigid, their desires impermeable. It will tell us that straight men simply cannot be aroused by men and that gay men are virtually hardwired to be repulsed by the thought of sex with women. Regardless of what else we might say about the soundness of these studies, what is evident to me is that they have been used to authorize many a straight man’s homophobia, and many a gay man’s misogyny.

The historical perspective laid out in the article is particularly useful, and I hope that someday we can evolve to a point where we can recognize the validity of different manifestations of human sexuality, without having to reduce the discussion to the simplistic black and white of choice versus biological imperative. All of us are products of a complex blend of genetic material and psychological and socio-cultural factors.

Posted in Socio-politics.

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