Everything You Have Been Told about Gayness and Gender Is Wrong

You haven’t been told the truth. You have been subjected to relentless sophistry and lies.

We have been told over and over again that gays, lesbians, and transgenders are “born that way.” Science, in fact, makes no such claim. Never has. In fact, social science, biological science, and every branch of medical science and psychology contradict this claim.

The New Atlantis, A Journal of Technology and Society, has produced a remarkable, far-reaching landmark study which offers a summary and an up-to-date explanation of research on sexual orientation and gender identity from the biological, psychological, and social sciences, covering nearly 200 peer-reviewed studies. Please watch the excellent short introductory trailer:

In a nutshell, here is what science and medicine, not popular culture or media and political elites, tells us:

  • The belief that sexual orientation is an innate, biologically fixed human property -- that people are “born that way” -- is not supported by scientific evidence.
  • Likewise, the belief that gender identity is an innate, fixed human property independent of biological sex -- so that a person might be a “man trapped in a woman’s body” or a “woman trapped in a man’s body” -- is not supported by scientific evidence.
  • Only a minority of children who express gender-atypical thoughts or behavior will continue to do so into adolescence or adulthood. There is no evidence that all such children should be encouraged to become transgender, much less subjected to hormone treatments or surgery.
  • Non-heterosexual and transgender people have higher rates of mental health problems (anxiety, depression, suicide), as well as behavioral and social problems (substance abuse, intimate partner violence), than the general population. Discrimination alone does not account for the entire disparity.

The authors are Lawrence S. Mayer, M.B., M.S., Ph.D., scholar-in-residence in the Department of Psychiatry at the Johns Hopkins University and a professor of statistics and biostatistics at Arizona State University; and Paul R. McHugh, M.D. professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine who for twenty-five years was the psychiatrist-in-chief at the Johns Hopkins Hospital.

The vast body of scientific evidence tells a different story from the one you have heard: Being same-sex attracted is shaped primarily by a person’s relationships, culture and other experiences, not genetics or prenatal hormones. 

And while the terms “sexual identity” or “sexual orientation” are so commonly used that they go unquestioned and are perceived to have been derived from biological or medical science, they are not. These terms are merely expressions of desire, behavior and identity, all of which are fluid and may change over time. Additionally, “gay”, “lesbian” and “transgender” are not scientific terms. Gays, lesbians and transgenders are not separate species of human beings.  Those of us who experience same-sex attraction or gender dysphoria are simply human beings; no additional modifiers necessary.

The only thing that science actually tells us is that we are born either male or female: Undeniable, irrefutable biological and psychological truth. We are either men, or women. Period.

Popular culture now espouses the notion that heteronormativity is harmful to those with same-sex attraction. But “Heteronormativity” is nothing more than a recently made up entry in the Dictionary of Political Correctness. And while many have passively accepted the “Minority Stress Model” -- the notion that LGBTs experience elevated levels of mental and emotional distress due to social stigma and living within a heterosexist society – science identifies no linkage.  It’s a dead end theory.

Likewise, those who identify as “transsexual” are not expressing a true or immutable trait. Gender dysphoria is not much different from anorexia -- the potentially life-threatening belief that one is overweight when in reality one is not -- and is perhaps just as dangerous. Men are men and women are women.  Biology offers only a binary choice, not the thirty-one (31) gender options recently identified by New York City's experts or the fifty-eight (58) gender options identified by Facebook.

Braced for Ridicule or Neglect

As you can imagine, I will be labeled a Neanderthal, a bigot, and homophobe for stating this and for sharing this study with you.  

As a same-sex attracted man who has testified against same-sex marriage in various state Legislatures and who has spoken in numerous public forums, I’ve witnessed this firsthand. For objecting to the notion of same-sex marriage I have been told by commenters at American Thinker that I am “ ...an ignorant, grotesque, waste of life, anti-freedom, anti-American, parasitic, self-loathing, gay Uncle Tom, mentally diseased, barbarian Nazi TRASH who should be legally tried, convicted, and sentenced to death for crimes against humanity,” (yes, that is a single, exact quote). Many with whom I proudlly stand shoulder to shoulder on this issue have experienced far worse, far more dire threats to their families and livelihoods.

I condemn no one -- gay, straight, transgender or whatever; I do however seek to identify and condemn errant, harmful ideologies and lies, especially those which diminish and endanger -- sometimes horribly -- the lives of children. I don’t call myself “gay” because it is a term devoid of real meaning. I am a man, and despite my inclinations, my body is made for having sex not with other men, but with one woman, my wife, whom I love. 

A Grave Existential Threat to the Gay Lobby

The mainstream media will deride and ridicule this study and/or simply ignore it because it is based on irrefutable scientific fact, and as such is an enormous threat to the grand pretension of genderlessness and genderless marriage. 

The Human Rights Campaign (HRC) has already attacked the study for the simple reason that it represents a grave existential threat. This study undermines any justification for HRC’s continued existence and the estimated nearly $30 million it hauls in annually from contributions. Its luxurious headquarters located on Rhode Island Avenue in Washington DC would have to be sold to some other high-powered lobbying enterprise. 

HRC Photo.

Once freed from the pursuit of political power and manipulation of those with same-sex attraction and gender dysphoria, perhaps the staff might then be able to concentrate on helping LGBTs with their real, actual problems and challenges as outlined in The New Atlantis study -- not imagined, fabricated or opportunistic ones.

More key findings:

● Compared to the general population, non-heterosexual subpopulations are at an elevated risk for a variety of adverse health and mental health outcomes.

● Members of the non-heterosexual population are estimated to have about 1.5 times higher risk of experiencing anxiety disorders than members of the heterosexual population, as well as roughly double the risk of depression, 1.5 times the risk of substance abuse, and nearly 2.5 times the risk of suicide.

● Members of the transgender population are also at higher risk of a variety of mental health problems compared to members of the non-transgender population. Especially alarmingly, the rate of lifetime suicide attempts across all ages of transgender individuals is estimated at 41%, compared to under 5% in the overall U.S. population.

● Compared to the general population, adults who have undergone sex-reassignment surgery continue to have a higher risk of experiencing poor mental health outcomes. One study found that, compared to controls, sex-reassigned individuals were about five times more likely to attempt suicide and about 19 times more likely to die by suicide.

● Longitudinal studies of adolescents suggest that sexual orientation may be quite fluid over the life course for some people, with one study estimating that as many as 80% of male adolescents who report same-sex attractions no longer do so as adults (although the extent to which this figure reflects actual changes in same-sex attractions and not just artifacts of the survey process has been contested by some researchers).

● Compared to heterosexuals, non-heterosexuals are about two to three times as likely to have experienced childhood sexual abuse.

● Children are a special case when addressing transgender issues. Only a minority of children who experience cross-gender identification will continue to do so into adolescence or adulthood.

● There is little scientific evidence for the therapeutic value of interventions that delay puberty or modify the secondary sex characteristics of adolescents, although some children may have improved psychological well-being if they are encouraged and supported in their cross-gender identification. There is no evidence that all children who express gender-atypical thoughts or behavior should be encouraged to become transgender.

Dr. Paul McHugh, co-author of the report, explains: “The aim [of the report] is to make sure people aren’t finding themselves in a misdirection of their life that’s going to keep them from flourishing as people.”

Adam Keiper, editor, The New Atlantis added: “The idea here is a full understanding of what it means to be human.”

Only truth, not lies -- no matter how popular they might be -- leads to human freedom and flourishing. 

Doug Mainwaring is a writer and marriage & children’s rights activist, currently working on his forthcoming book, Marriage, Ground Zero: The Real Battle Dawns. Doug can be reached at doug.MGZ@aol.com