It is nice to get a bit of honesty on the issue of homosexuality. It does not come our way very often in the mainstream media. And when this honesty comes from homosexual activists, it is even more refreshing. Indeed, when heterosexuals tell the truth about homosexuality, they are dismissed as homophobes. So what happens to homosexual truth tellers? Are they homophobic as well?
A very revealing case of homosexual honesty comes from Peter Tatchell, an Australian-born, British-based homosexual activist, who spills the beans on the “gay gene”. There is none, he asserts, and says homosexual desire is not genetically determined.
Writing for Spiked online, June 24, 2008, he makes some very interesting remarks about homosexual determinism. He in fact sounds very much like, well, me. I have been saying similar things for years, and have been howled down by the homosexual lobby as bigoted, intolerant and homophobic. But it is nice to hear homosexuals saying similar things.
He says there may well be biological influence in one’s sexuality, but nothing more. He argues that “an influence is not the same as a cause. Genes and hormones may predispose a person to one sexuality rather than another. But that’s all. Predisposition and determination are two different things. There is a major problem with gay gene theory, and with all theories that posit the biological programming of sexual orientation. If heterosexuality and homosexuality are, indeed, genetically predetermined (and therefore mutually exclusive and unchangeable), how do we explain bisexuality or people who, suddenly in mid-life, switch from heterosexuality to homosexuality (or vice versa)? We can’t. The reality is that queer and straight desires are far more ambiguous, blurred and overlapping than any theory of genetic causality can allow.”
Indeed, he is honest enough to admit that the jury is still out on the science of all this: “The relative influence of biological versus social factors with regard to sexual orientation is still uncertain. What is, however, certain is that if gayness was primarily explainable in genetic terms we would expect it to appear in the same proportions, and in similar forms, in all cultures and all epochs. As the anthropologists Clellan Ford and Frank Beach demonstrated in Patterns Of Sexual Behaviour (1965), far from being cross-culturally uniform and stable, both the incidence and expressions of same-sex desire vary vastly between different societies.”
He concludes his piece with this interesting remark: “The homophobes are thus, paradoxically, closer to the truth than many gay activists.” Thank you Peter. Nice to have some positive affirmation here. Of course he does not go all the way and admit that people can leave their homosexual lifestyle for a heterosexual one. He says, “For most of us, it is impossible to subsequently change our sexual orientation”. Notice that he does not say ‘all of us’, but ‘most of us’. That is a very telling choice of word usage.
Tatchell is certainly right to debunk the gay gene myth. And he is not alone in such candid admissions. A number of other homosexual activists have also admitted to such truths. Consider Australian activist and Latrobe University lecturer, Dennis Altman, who wrote this in 1986: “To be Haitian or a hemophiliac is determined at birth, but being gay is an identity that is socially determined and involves personal choice. Even if, as many want to argue, one has no choice in experiencing homosexual desire, there is a wide choice of possible ways of acting out these feelings, from celibacy and denial . . . to self-affirmation and the adoption of a gay identity.” “Being gay,” says Altman, “is a choice”.
Another Australian homosexual activist has said similar things about homosexuality and genetics: “I think the idea that sexuality is genetic is crap. There is absolutely no evidence for it at the moment, and I think it is unhealthy that people want to embrace this idea. It does reflect a desire to say, ‘it’s not our fault’, as a way of deflecting our critics. We have achieved what we have achieved by defiance, not by concessions. I think we should be recruiting people to homosexuality. It’s a great lifestyle and something everybody should have the right to experience. If you believe it’s genetic, how are you going to make the effort?” Or as he put it elsewhere: “On the question of recruiting to homosexuality – well, of course, I am in favor of this. I believe homosexuality to be a perfectly valid lifestyle choice. . . . I am naturally keen to encourage people to participate in [the gay lifestyle].”
And a leading Australian feminist and lesbian has also made it clear that choice is a major component of the lifestyle. Melbourne University academic Sheila Jeffreys became a feminist in her twenties, when she was involved in “perfectly good” relationships with men. She then decided to become a lesbian: “At the time,” she says, we “made the decision to become political lesbians, as we called it.”
She says that “you can learn to be heterosexual and you can learn to be lesbian”. When challenged by an interviewer that sexuality is more innate than that, she continues, “I don’t think there’s anything natural about sexuality; you do learn it. And you can unlearn it, go in a different direction, change it.” She says that her own experience proves this, as does that of many other women who decided to switch to lesbianism in the ‘70s.
Other homosexuals have admitted that choice plays at least a partial role in the overall equation. Indeed, there is even an entire website devoted to those who say they have chosen the homosexual lifestyle. The site says it is “a radical gathering place for people who have chosen to be queer” ( www.queerbychoice.com ).
However, the tendency is to deny choice, to make it appear that homosexuals cannot help it, and to argue that any criticism of the gay lifestyle is as silly as criticism of being left-handed or red-haired. And this has been a deliberate strategy by homosexual activists. They have done a very good job to convince a gullible public that homosexuals are born that way and cannot change.
But that bluff needs to be challenged. I and others have challenged it. And it is quite refreshing when homosexual activists challenge it as well.