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          Orientation: undefined

          Sultan Ahmed

          Issue date: 3/19/10 Section: Opinion
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          The following exchange about another person took place between myself and a friend. This is the ending portion of the conversation.

          Me: It's really unfortunate. His mother represses him so much, and he's so reserved because of it. I mean, he's 17, and he still thinks that girls are disgusting and have cooties.

          Friend: Are you sure he isn't gay? I think he's probably gay.

          Me: He might very well be gay. Honestly, though, if he is, I don't think it's real. It's probably because of the way his mother treats him.

          Friend: But, if he's actually attracted to men, doesn't that make him gay?

          Me: I don't think so. I think there is biological sexuality, but there's also psychological sexuality, gay or straight.

          Friend: I still think that he's gay, regardless of what the cause is.

          This conversation got me thinking. I have generally accepted that there is both natural and psychological sexuality. This is to say that heterosexuality and homosexuality can be either genuine or conditioned by social, cultural, or other factors. A heterosexual person may very well have convinced themselves of their orientation because of familial pressures or social stigma, as a homosexual person may have convinced themselves of their orientation because of a terrible heterosexual relationship or a desire to rebel against social stigma. On the other hand, either orientation (as I believe is the case with most people) could be natural and predetermined. The problem is not this particular issue. Rather, I wonder what constitutes a 'real' sexual orientation.

          Experiments by neurologists at the Austrian Academy of Sciences have demonstrated that it is possible to cause homosexual behavior in fruit flies through gene manipulation. Suppose, for instance, scientists manage to identify the 'sexual orientation genes' in human beings. If a person has the 'homosexuality gene,' and is yet convinced that they are attracted to the opposite sex, or vice versa, what orientation does that person actually have? What constitutes a sexual orientation?
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            posted 3/19/10 @ 1:03 PM EST

            what is this societal and psychology mumbo jumbo?

            if a boy likes having sex with boys, he is homosexual.

            if a girl likes having sex with girls, she is homosexual. (Continued…)

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