Atheism and homosexuality

Dec 5, 2011 Full story: Conservapedia 3,862

Creationist scientists and creationist assert that the theory of evolution cannot account for the origin of gender and sexual reproduction.http://www.apologeticspress.org/articles/136http://www.answersingenesis.org/pbs_nova/0928ep5.asp [[Creation Ministries International]] states: "Homosexual acts go against [[God]]'s original [[Intelligent design ... (more)

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“THERE IS NO GOD”

Since: Feb 09

Northern California

#703 Jul 22, 2013
FREE SERVANT wrote:
<quoted text>Have you ever read the commands of Jesus? Do you know what all the laws and commandments hang on? Did you know that Jesus is lord also of the law?
Clearly you do not know what Jesus commands of his followers or you would have sold your computer and given the money to the poor.

First, a true follower of Jesus would have to be extremely poor--as poor as the proverbial churchmouse. The Bible makes this quite clear:

(a) "...none of you can be my disciple unless he gives up everything he has" (Luke 14:33);
(b) "If you want to be perfect, go and sell all you have and give the money to the poor and you will have riches in heaven" (Matt. 19:21);
(c) "Sell your possessions and give alms" (Luke 12:33);
(d) "But give what is in your cups and plates to the poor, and everything will be clean for you" (Luke 11:41);
(e) "Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt,.... But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven.... for where your treasure is, there will your heart be also" (Matt. 6:19-21);
(f) "How hardly shall they that have riches enter to the kingdom of God" (Mark 10:23);
(g) "Truly, I say to you, it will be hard for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven. Again I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God" (Matt. 19:23-24);
(h) A certain ruler told Jesus that he had obeyed all the commandments from his youth up. But, Jesus said, "Yet lackest thou one thing: sell all that thou hast, and distribute unto the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come, follow me" (Luke 18:22, Mark 10:21),

John 14:15 KJV, "If ye love me, keep my commandments."

Clearly you do not keep Jesus' commandments therefore you hate him.

What a jerk you are to come here and tell other people to accept the Bible when you clearly refuse to do so.
FREE SERVANT

Ashburn, VA

#704 Jul 22, 2013
The laws and commandments were given by Moses and the prophets and Jesus is the fullfillment of them. Now that Jesus has come and went to the cross, we are living in the age of his grace and he is our judge.

“THERE IS NO GOD”

Since: Feb 09

Northern California

#705 Jul 22, 2013
FREE SERVANT wrote:
The Bible tells us that with every temptation there will be a way of escape. If we pray as Jesus taught us, to be delivered from evil, over time we can be made free of anything we know is wrong.
"Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you: For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened"--Matt. 7:7-8, Luke 11:9-10;

"Whatsoever ye shall ask the Father in my name, he will give it you"--John 16:23;

"And all things, whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer, believing, ye shall receive"Matt. 21:22.

John 14:13-14 NIV, "And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it.

Mark 11:24 (KJV), "Therefore I say unto you, What things soever ye desire, when ye pray, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them.

In order to counteract the patent inaccuracy of these premises, apologists seek modification through James 4:3 and 1 John 5:14. The former says, "Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask remiss, that ye may consume it upon your lusts." In other words, the reason the prayers of the sick, the old, the infirm, the afflicted, etc. have not been answered is because they were based on lust, greed and other selfish motives. It's hard to believe even hardened apologists really believe this. On the other hand, 1 John 5:14 ("...if we ask anything according to his will, he heareth us") represents a more subtle ploy. Prayers are not answered because they do not comply with God's will. The problems with this explanation are:(a) the earlier verses said nothing about God's will or the need to fulfill His desires, and
(b) judging from many prayers which people feel were answered, one can't help but question God's morality. Praying, for example, that one's relative will die in order to inherit his wealth and having your wish materialize, does not speak well for God.

“THERE IS NO GOD”

Since: Feb 09

Northern California

#706 Jul 22, 2013
FREE SERVANT wrote:
The Bible tells us ...
Mark 16:17-18, which says, "And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues; they shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them: they shall lays hands on the sick, and they shall recover." Many true believers have handled deadly snakes and drunk deadly poisons only to find the Bible is both erroneous and dangerous. Courts in Illinois, Tennessee, and elsewhere have repeatedly stopped practices of this nature because of the treat to life. Ask believers to drink poison or handle deadly snakes and one will quickly realize the extent to which even they do not take the book seriously. Mark 16:17-18 clearly states what they can do if they believe. Put them to the test, however, and you will witness a lot of rationalizing.

Other verses within the first category promise unbelievable powers to those with faith: "If ye have faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye shall say unto this mountain, Remove hence to yonder place, and it shall remove; and nothing shall be impossible to you"--Matt. 17:20 and "If ye had faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye might say unto this sycamore tree, Be thou plucked up by the root, and be thou planted in the sea; and it should obey you"--Luke 17:6. Also note Matt. 21:21. Yet, despite promises of tremendous strength, those with the strongest faith are often the weakest, the most helpless individuals in society. They often resort to faith because all else has failed.

“THERE IS NO GOD”

Since: Feb 09

Northern California

#707 Jul 22, 2013
FREE SERVANT wrote:
The Bible tells us ...
The bat is a bird (Lev. 11:19, Deut. 14:11, 18);
Some fowls are four-footed (Lev. 11:20-21);
Some creeping insects have four legs.(Lev. 11:22-23);
Hares chew the cud (Lev. 11:6);
Conies chew the cud (Lev. 11:5);
Camels don't divide the hoof (Lev. 11:4);
The earth was formed out of and by means of water (2 Peter 3:5 RSV);
The earth rest on pillars (1 Sam. 2:8);
The earth won't be moved (1Chron. 16:30);
A hare does not divide the hoof (Deut. 14:7);
The rainbow is not as old as rain and sunshine (Gen. 9:13);
A mustard seed is the smallest of all seeds and grows into the greatest of all shrubs (Matt. 13:31-32 RSV);
Turtles have voices (Song of Sol. 2:12);
The earth has ends or edges (Job 37:3);
The earth has four corners (Isa. 11:12, Rev. 7:1);
Some 4-legged animals fly (Lev. 11:21);
The world's language didn't evolve but appeared suddenly (Gen. 11:6-9; and
A fetus can understand speech (Luke 1:44).

“I have upset the hand of god”

Since: Jan 11

Threats pending

#708 Jul 22, 2013
FREE SERVANT wrote:
<quoted text>Is anything perverted or out of the question in marriage laws?
Is this rhetorical or are you looking to upgrade?
FREE SERVANT

Ashburn, VA

#709 Jul 22, 2013
My phone is not letting me reply to post again and the battery is getting low. I would like to respond, but I can't at this time.

“Why does my ignorance”

Since: Mar 11

justify your deity?

#710 Jul 22, 2013
CH2O2 wrote:
<quoted text>
OK. Lets analise your argument.I fail to understand how that makes me incorrect. Please elaborate.
B/c genes are pleiotropic, you can't isolate and remove them. So you wouldn't be able to produce a "cure" for a behavior caused by pleiotropic genes.
I fail to understand how that makes me incorrect. Please elaborate.
Given cultural conditions, genes that seem unrelated to sexual preference, can affect sexuality. Studying genes within only one culture, using only one cultural construction of sexuality, is going to present all kinds of false leads.

For example, genes for smell could affect sexuality. Or genes for imprinting via smell. Or, if part of homosexuality is being fashionable (and I'm just making up bs for an example), or feminine in a particular culture, then genes for those would increase the likeliness of a person developing that sexual identity. So, if you're testing your population, you might find those genes to be consistent, but they wouldn't be indicative of sexual preference in all human contexts.
I fail to understand how that makes me incorrect. Please elaborate.
Genes are expressed under environmental conditions; they are not determinants of behavior, but facilitators. Enculturation literally develops biology, such that enculturation is indistinguishable from biology if your study population all shares the same enculturation. Hence, you cannot make evolutionary arguments based only on one culture, but have to take a cross cultural, historical position.
I suspect this reflects your opinion and is not backed by any study made by professionals. Until you can provide such a study I will not accept your unsupported opinion.
It's backed up by the entirety of anthropology. The most popular book on it would be by Foucault "The History of Sexuality." But perhaps the most relevant would be Greenberg's "The Construction of Sexuality."
Homosexuality is definately not a product of "recent western cultural history".
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Homosexuality#Hi...
The above contains two problems:
1. a definitional issue. Homosexuality is a sexual identity, a product of the last 140 years or so in Western culture. People in other cultures and throughout history never experienced "homosexuality" as it is expressed here. Yes, they practiced same sex sexual behavior, but the meanings attached to the behaviors were very different. For example, the Ancient Greeks did not have the notion of "coming out" as do Western homosexuals.

2. Wikipedia isn't science.
I agree.
<quoted text>
You seem to have your own private definition of homosexuality, unknown to everybody else.
I'm an anthropologist. My definitions come out of my work on sexuality and readings in the field. I'm working on a paper, actually, to clarify definitions in evolutionary psych and anth, to try to move away from analyzing the biology of culturally specific sexual behavior so that we can move toward a deeper understanding of the evolutionary basis of same sex sexual behavior.
So, like I said, homosexuality does have genetic and environmental components but somehow I am wrong? You lost me with this one.
If that's all you're claiming, you're not mistaken. But we can make that claim for any behavior. To make it a useful statement, it has to be a lot more specific - at this general level, this claim cannot hold any meaning.

Like, if you could say "Gene X produces Y behavior when expressed under P environment" you'd have something very powerful. Or, if you could say "Gene complex X, which is made up of genes Y, P, and Q, when expressed under environmental conditions U, produce this behavior" then you'd have Nobel winning genius.

“Quantum Junctn: Use Both Lanes”

Since: Dec 06

Tulsa, Oklahoma USofA

#711 Jul 22, 2013
FREE SERVANT wrote:
<quoted text>Is anything perverted or out of the question in marriage laws?
What do you mean "perverted"?

Religious bigots used to claim mixed racial marriages were "perverted".(and some still do...)

It all depends on how bigoted you are, doesn't it?

“I have upset the hand of god”

Since: Jan 11

Threats pending

#712 Jul 22, 2013
Hidingfromyou wrote:
<quoted text>
B/c genes are pleiotropic, you can't isolate and remove them. So you wouldn't be able to produce a "cure" for a behavior caused by pleiotropic genes.
<quoted text>
Given cultural conditions, genes that seem unrelated to sexual preference, can affect sexuality. Studying genes within only one culture, using only one cultural construction of sexuality, is going to present all kinds of false leads.
For example, genes for smell could affect sexuality. Or genes for imprinting via smell. Or, if part of homosexuality is being fashionable (and I'm just making up bs for an example), or feminine in a particular culture, then genes for those would increase the likeliness of a person developing that sexual identity. So, if you're testing your population, you might find those genes to be consistent, but they wouldn't be indicative of sexual preference in all human contexts.
<quoted text>
Genes are expressed under environmental conditions; they are not determinants of behavior, but facilitators. Enculturation literally develops biology, such that enculturation is indistinguishable from biology if your study population all shares the same enculturation. Hence, you cannot make evolutionary arguments based only on one culture, but have to take a cross cultural, historical position.
<quoted text>
It's backed up by the entirety of anthropology. The most popular book on it would be by Foucault "The History of Sexuality." But perhaps the most relevant would be Greenberg's "The Construction of Sexuality."
<quoted text>
The above contains two problems:
1. a definitional issue. Homosexuality is a sexual identity, a product of the last 140 years or so in Western culture. People in other cultures and throughout history never experienced "homosexuality" as it is expressed here. Yes, they practiced same sex sexual behavior, but the meanings attached to the behaviors were very different. For example, the Ancient Greeks did not have the notion of "coming out" as do Western homosexuals.
2. Wikipedia isn't science.
<quoted text>
I'm an anthropologist. My definitions come out of my work on sexuality and readings in the field. I'm working on a paper, actually, to clarify definitions in evolutionary psych and anth, to try to move away from analyzing the biology of culturally specific sexual behavior so that we can move toward a deeper understanding of the evolutionary basis of same sex sexual behavior.
<quoted text>
If that's all you're claiming, you're not mistaken. But we can make that claim for any behavior. To make it a useful statement, it has to be a lot more specific - at this general level, this claim cannot hold any meaning.
Like, if you could say "Gene X produces Y behavior when expressed under P environment" you'd have something very powerful. Or, if you could say "Gene complex X, which is made up of genes Y, P, and Q, when expressed under environmental conditions U, produce this behavior" then you'd have Nobel winning genius.
You seem familiar. Have we talked on here before?

Are you referring to the genes associated with sexuality when you describe them as pleiotropic?

“I have upset the hand of god”

Since: Jan 11

Threats pending

#713 Jul 22, 2013
Bob of Quantum-Faith wrote:
<quoted text>
What do you mean "perverted"?
Religious bigots used to claim mixed racial marriages were "perverted".(and some still do...)
It all depends on how bigoted you are, doesn't it?
I am pretty sure he mans any couple other than man or woman, no matter how horrible either of them may be as people. They can be baby juggling, knife wielding, child killing, narcisistic, sociopathic, foul smelling and ultrarightwing conservative, illiterate, litterers as long as they are man and woman as ordained by God. Only then is it a true marriage made in heaven. Even though, marriage is really a cultural thing and even in the Bible it didn't always mean one man and one woman.

I assume he also means no tractors, refrigerators, pencils, bananas, or vending machines and such like. Fundamentalists are still divided over the odd scantily clad, rather alluring looking Electrolux. No nonhumans, at least not the ugly ones.

“Why does my ignorance”

Since: Mar 11

justify your deity?

#714 Jul 22, 2013
DanFromSmithville wrote:
<quoted text>You seem familiar. Have we talked on here before?
Are you referring to the genes associated with sexuality when you describe them as pleiotropic?
We may have, I recognize your name. I've posted a bit in the evo-forums, but got really, really, really bored of the creationists and their willful stupidity.

As far as I know, no genes have been conclusively demonstrated to be linked to sexuality. The ones that reached the popular press were heavily criticized in science.

Given that:

1. simple mendelian genetics are easy to find
2. none have been found for sexuality
3. the genes that are claimed to be "genes for homosexuality" are weakly associated with homosexuals
4. most genes are pleiotropic (after all, genes just code for proteins; proteins are released into the body and affect various systems)

It's therefore likely that genes involved in the production of sexual behavior are pleiotropic.

I further suggest that they're not directly related to sexuality, but related to learning and experiencing sexuality. Genes aren't determinants for behavior; they don't script behavior, especially in humans (in some animals, they do script behavior, like insects - but even insects have learning capabilities). Rather, they code for learning behavior.

In evo-psych parlance, you'd call them "evolved mechanisms of learning."

“I have upset the hand of god”

Since: Jan 11

Threats pending

#715 Jul 22, 2013
Hidingfromyou wrote:
<quoted text>
We may have, I recognize your name. I've posted a bit in the evo-forums, but got really, really, really bored of the creationists and their willful stupidity.
As far as I know, no genes have been conclusively demonstrated to be linked to sexuality. The ones that reached the popular press were heavily criticized in science.
Given that:
1. simple mendelian genetics are easy to find
2. none have been found for sexuality
3. the genes that are claimed to be "genes for homosexuality" are weakly associated with homosexuals
4. most genes are pleiotropic (after all, genes just code for proteins; proteins are released into the body and affect various systems)
It's therefore likely that genes involved in the production of sexual behavior are pleiotropic.
I further suggest that they're not directly related to sexuality, but related to learning and experiencing sexuality. Genes aren't determinants for behavior; they don't script behavior, especially in humans (in some animals, they do script behavior, like insects - but even insects have learning capabilities). Rather, they code for learning behavior.
In evo-psych parlance, you'd call them "evolved mechanisms of learning."
I think we were discussing reading lists at one time. I was getting ready to read Wrangham's Catching Fire I think. Reminds me, I loaned that book out and still haven't gotten a chance to finish it. I need to get that book back.

Thanks for the answer. Some of what you mention is way out of my field, but it is very interesting. It sounds like you are placing genes further into the background for behavior in thinking organisms. Is the burden of expression then more on nurture (learning/environment)? What do you think about an epigenetic basis for some aspects of sexuality?

“Why does my ignorance”

Since: Mar 11

justify your deity?

#716 Jul 22, 2013
Brian_G wrote:
<quoted text>We have the right to elect representatives and advocate policies that share our values. There is no wall of separation between church and state.
None?

“Why does my ignorance”

Since: Mar 11

justify your deity?

#717 Jul 22, 2013
CH2O2 wrote:
I suspect this reflects your opinion and is not backed by any study made by professionals. Until you can provide such a study I will not accept your unsupported opinion.
I wrote the book titles wrong. The first is:

Foucault - his wikipedia page is here, it'll have the correct references for the books on it, and a little blurb on them:

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

Volume 2, I believe, is the one I'm referring to.

Here's a link to Greenburg's book. It's actually called "the construction of homosexuality" not "sexuality" as I wrote above:

http://books.google.co.jp/books/about/The_Con...

“Why does my ignorance”

Since: Mar 11

justify your deity?

#718 Jul 22, 2013
DanFromSmithville wrote:
I think we were discussing reading lists at one time. I was getting ready to read Wrangham's Catching Fire I think. Reminds me, I loaned that book out and still haven't gotten a chance to finish it. I need to get that book back.
Thanks for the answer. Some of what you mention is way out of my field, but it is very interesting. It sounds like you are placing genes further into the background for behavior in thinking organisms. Is the burden of expression then more on nurture (learning/environment)? What do you think about an epigenetic basis for some aspects of sexuality?
Nice! Wrangham is spot on. Personally, I'd elaborate on what he wrote and add more discussion about how cooking affected intelligence, but yes, he's great.

Yeah, genes can't script behavior, so they're most likely scripting for learning. They code for a flexible brain that "imprints" a culture - at the same time, individuals differ in their genetic clusters and expressions and so on, so some of the variation in populations must be attributable to genes.

Expression of genes is always in environmental context. Some genes have greater penetrance than other genes - like "make arm here" or "produce two kidneys." But for complex, flexible behavior, genetic penetrance is going to be highest at things like speed and flexibility of learning, and we're probably talking about gene clusters, not specific genes (otherwise, all Einstein's children would be geniuses, for eg.- or any genius's kids).

Epigenetics - wow, you're waaaaaay ahead of the game! They are going to be found to be more and more important in genetic expression. I predict that the human control over the expression of genes is first going to be done through manipulating the epigenetics, probably as chemical/drug signals during pregnancy. It's much less invasive than genetic engineering and probably less dangerous.

But I can't see how epigenetics would affect sexual preference. It's hard for me to imagine a chemical signature that would signify "prefer same sex partners" that would be present in the mother (via diet?)

Plus, epigenetics often acts two generations down - it doesn't skip generations, like Mendelian genetics does, but can produce changes in the gametes of the second gen, which then change the development of the third gen. But there's a lot of first-second gen stuff going on here, too, so my point above might be moot.

However, you're prescient in that the old hormone hypothesis is going to be resurrected from the dead to check out the epigenetics of homosexuals. I bet that, like the previous scientists who tried going that route, it will end in failure.

So, yes, I guess I'm favoring enculturation over biological determinism. However, b/c of individual variation, there has to be some genetic contribution (probably through gene clusters, and genes expressed under certain cultural conditions)- and, at the same time, that genetic contribution might not be inheritable. If it's due to gene clusters, then it could be the product of sexual variation.

The interesting thing about sexual variation is that it's not entirely random - the genes are competing for expression. And epigenetics is part of that competition - genes "try" to turn off other genes and become expressed via epigenetics. I'm kind of rambling now, so I'll stop :)

Since: Jul 13

Lisbon, Portugal

#719 Jul 22, 2013
Nuggin wrote:
<quoted text>
This sort of data is utterly unreliable.
The prevalence of homosexuality among similar genetic groups in San Francisco vs Wyoming would result in wildly different data being collected.
Especially going back generations.
How do you know it "would result in wildly different data"? Do you have access to such data or is this just speculation? I suspect it is the later. In the absence of real data I can't accept your assumption.
The prevalence of homossexuality in familly lines is supported by the available data.
Nuggin wrote:
<quoted text>
The male offspring of male homosexuals are no more likely to be homosexual than the male offspring of a heterosexual.
Even if that were the case (I have no information either way) homosexual men have a higher probability of having homosexual relatives through their sisters. This is consistent with the presence of a heritable genetic factor shared by homosexual men, their sisters and the sister's offspring.
Nuggin wrote:
<quoted text>
Male homosexuality is determined by the MOTHER not the father.
Further, it's not a genetic trait in the offspring, but rather a condition of the mother's pregnancy.
There is evidence suggesting this can be the case for some homosexual males. Still, this suggests the presence of a heritable genetic factor which expresses itself in females when pregnant with males.
Nuggin wrote:
<quoted text>
Could the cause of this condition have a genetic component? Maybe.
This is exactly my point. I am glad you agree. So why are we having this discussion?
Nuggin wrote:
<quoted text>
However, the trigger for such a component is multiple male children...
This is called "fraternal birth order effect". But this only accounts for about 15% of homosexual men. What about the other 85% homosexual men? What about homosexual women? like I've told you before, I am a homosexual man and I have no brothers. My partner, obviously also a homosexual man, does not have older brothers. How do you explain our sexuality? There must be other causes for homosexuality which you choose to ignore.
Nuggin wrote:
<quoted text>
...so in order to "breed it out" you would have to allow a woman to have enough children until one comes out gay, then sterilize the entire lineage lest her heterosexual sons pass along this alleged gene to their female offspring who then would not be gay, but would potentially produce gay offspring assuming they had enough male children.
[QUOTE]
Not really the case. If a genetic factor does exist, all we have to do is identify it. After that we could breed it out, or breed it in. I would not endorse it either way.

[QUOTE who="Nuggin"]<quo ted text>
The point is this: When people talk about a "gay gene" they are talking about something which is present IN the gay male, which can be tested for and or selected out.
That's not the case here.

That can be the case for 15% of male homosexuals who have older brothers. What about the other 85% of homosexual men who don't? What about homosexual women? How do you explain that?
Nuggin wrote:
<quoted text>
Gay men are not caused by a gay gene present in them.
How could you possibly know that? What makes you so certain? Even investigators in this field don't make that assumption. Why do you?
Nuggin wrote:
<quoted text>
Testing them for such a gene is fruitless.
Testing women to try and isolate such a gene would likely be fruitless as well, as a woman who is a carrier may not have sufficient children to trigger. Or she may have sufficient children who have not admitted their homosexuality. Or she may have only girls. etc etc etc.
Ermmm...what? Assuming there is a "gay gene", all it takes is isolating and identifying it in one woman known to have homosexual offspring. After we know the DNA sequence, a simple blood test would do the trick for everybody else.

“I have upset the hand of god”

Since: Jan 11

Threats pending

#720 Jul 22, 2013
Hidingfromyou wrote:
<quoted text>
Nice! Wrangham is spot on. Personally, I'd elaborate on what he wrote and add more discussion about how cooking affected intelligence, but yes, he's great.
Yeah, genes can't script behavior, so they're most likely scripting for learning. They code for a flexible brain that "imprints" a culture - at the same time, individuals differ in their genetic clusters and expressions and so on, so some of the variation in populations must be attributable to genes.
Expression of genes is always in environmental context. Some genes have greater penetrance than other genes - like "make arm here" or "produce two kidneys." But for complex, flexible behavior, genetic penetrance is going to be highest at things like speed and flexibility of learning, and we're probably talking about gene clusters, not specific genes (otherwise, all Einstein's children would be geniuses, for eg.- or any genius's kids).
Epigenetics - wow, you're waaaaaay ahead of the game! They are going to be found to be more and more important in genetic expression. I predict that the human control over the expression of genes is first going to be done through manipulating the epigenetics, probably as chemical/drug signals during pregnancy. It's much less invasive than genetic engineering and probably less dangerous.
But I can't see how epigenetics would affect sexual preference. It's hard for me to imagine a chemical signature that would signify "prefer same sex partners" that would be present in the mother (via diet?)
Plus, epigenetics often acts two generations down - it doesn't skip generations, like Mendelian genetics does, but can produce changes in the gametes of the second gen, which then change the development of the third gen. But there's a lot of first-second gen stuff going on here, too, so my point above might be moot.
However, you're prescient in that the old hormone hypothesis is going to be resurrected from the dead to check out the epigenetics of homosexuals. I bet that, like the previous scientists who tried going that route, it will end in failure.
So, yes, I guess I'm favoring enculturation over biological determinism. However, b/c of individual variation, there has to be some genetic contribution (probably through gene clusters, and genes expressed under certain cultural conditions)- and, at the same time, that genetic contribution might not be inheritable. If it's due to gene clusters, then it could be the product of sexual variation.
The interesting thing about sexual variation is that it's not entirely random - the genes are competing for expression. And epigenetics is part of that competition - genes "try" to turn off other genes and become expressed via epigenetics. I'm kind of rambling now, so I'll stop :)
I would have said you were on a roll. But thanks for all the great information and discussion. Very interesting. I will have to give your posts some serious consideration, but I do agree that many features of sexuality surround polygenic traits more frequently.

I am learning epigenetics somewhat piecemeal. My education so far has been based around what I can learn from plant tissue culture and field production of transgenic plants. Tissue culture appears to cause significant changes in DNA methylation while individual transgenes appear to have little or no impact on methylation. Tissue culture by itself can lead to markedly different phenotypes from plants with the same genotype and all apparently due to changes in the methylome between transformation events. This is all at the learning stage for me and I haven't the basis to equate this to impacts on humans if it even translates to us.

I must get that book back so I can finish it. Don't spoil it for me, I want to be surprised by the ending. LOL

“I have upset the hand of god”

Since: Jan 11

Threats pending

#721 Jul 22, 2013
Hidingfromyou wrote:
<quoted text>
Nice! Wrangham is spot on. Personally, I'd elaborate on what he wrote and add more discussion about how cooking affected intelligence, but yes, he's great.
Yeah, genes can't script behavior, so they're most likely scripting for learning. They code for a flexible brain that "imprints" a culture - at the same time, individuals differ in their genetic clusters and expressions and so on, so some of the variation in populations must be attributable to genes.
Expression of genes is always in environmental context. Some genes have greater penetrance than other genes - like "make arm here" or "produce two kidneys." But for complex, flexible behavior, genetic penetrance is going to be highest at things like speed and flexibility of learning, and we're probably talking about gene clusters, not specific genes (otherwise, all Einstein's children would be geniuses, for eg.- or any genius's kids).
Epigenetics - wow, you're waaaaaay ahead of the game! They are going to be found to be more and more important in genetic expression. I predict that the human control over the expression of genes is first going to be done through manipulating the epigenetics, probably as chemical/drug signals during pregnancy. It's much less invasive than genetic engineering and probably less dangerous.
But I can't see how epigenetics would affect sexual preference. It's hard for me to imagine a chemical signature that would signify "prefer same sex partners" that would be present in the mother (via diet?)
Plus, epigenetics often acts two generations down - it doesn't skip generations, like Mendelian genetics does, but can produce changes in the gametes of the second gen, which then change the development of the third gen. But there's a lot of first-second gen stuff going on here, too, so my point above might be moot.
However, you're prescient in that the old hormone hypothesis is going to be resurrected from the dead to check out the epigenetics of homosexuals. I bet that, like the previous scientists who tried going that route, it will end in failure.
So, yes, I guess I'm favoring enculturation over biological determinism. However, b/c of individual variation, there has to be some genetic contribution (probably through gene clusters, and genes expressed under certain cultural conditions)- and, at the same time, that genetic contribution might not be inheritable. If it's due to gene clusters, then it could be the product of sexual variation.
The interesting thing about sexual variation is that it's not entirely random - the genes are competing for expression. And epigenetics is part of that competition - genes "try" to turn off other genes and become expressed via epigenetics. I'm kind of rambling now, so I'll stop :)
I ran out of space but was wondering about your thoughts on this paragraph of mine that I cut from my previous response.

What about studies of families with significant violent or criminal behavior across generations? I am sorry that I can't quote you the specific citations. It has been a long time since I read these papers and don't even recall the journals. As I said, this is all outside my expertise. Way outside.

“I Luv Carbon Dioxide”

Since: Dec 08

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#722 Jul 23, 2013
Bob of Quantum-Faith wrote:
Actually? It does **exactly** mean we **must** rewrite marriage laws! Religious bigotry cannot be enforced by hatelaws. And anti-homosexual **anything** is religious bigotry...
There are no "anti-homosexual" laws, same sex cohabitation is legal in every state. My arguments have nothing to do with religion, I'm arguing based on the consequences of changing law and social welfare.

Same sex marriage means a new standard of gender segregation where before we've had perfect diversity and integration. It means higher taxes, wasteful government spending for entitlements to same sex dependent beneficiaries, court litigation and intrusive new regulations around marriage.

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