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carzen Donating Member (112 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-09-06 10:43 AM
Original message
Volunteers key to search for gay gene
If Dr. Alan Sanders is going to find any gay genes, he needs a specific sort of DNA to study -- and lots of it.

The genetics researcher wants to collect DNA samples from 1,000 pairs of gay men and their gay brothers for a government-funded study that could identify a biological basis for homosexuality.

So the Northwestern University professor hauls his rainbow-colored recruitment banner, sign-up sheets and reassuring manner to gay pride events in cities big and small. He worked the N.C. Pride Festival at the end of last month in Durham.

"A lot of people in the gay community are supportive of the research," Sanders said. "It doesn't fall under the silly notion that sexual orientation is a choice. My question to those folks is, 'Do you remember that moment you said: Hey, I think I'll be straight?' "


http://www.newsobserver.com/102/story/496662.html
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jhrobbins Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-09-06 10:55 AM
Response to Original message
1. I have always thought that this old conservative canard...
was so ridiculous. I knew I was different before I even understood sexuality because being gay is so much more than the sexual act. When I was a little boy, my father coached a high school baseball team and I followed those high school boys around like a puppy dog and it had nothing to do with sex - I had no idea about it at that time - I just knew there was something about those guys that was attractive to me.
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madmusic Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-09-06 10:55 AM
Response to Original message
2. In the future...
Politicians will have get DNA tested before the swearing in ceremony. It will be standard in all background checks.
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Parche Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-09-06 10:57 AM
Response to Original message
3. gay Gene
Gene is a Conservative Republican
He joined the Log Cabin Republican group
But Gene keeps telling people he is not gay
Is Gene gay?
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Lerkfish Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-09-06 10:58 AM
Response to Original message
4. I don't know how I feel about this
this could either be a good thing to eliminate the bizarre homophobic notion of transmitting homosexuality to heterosexual people...

but I only see it as a bad thing, with this current society. Think scarlet letter.
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JuniperLea Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-09-06 10:58 AM
Response to Original message
5. They should already have plenty of DNA
Sounds like a waste of money, really. Think of all the AIDS research studies going all the way back to the mid-80's. They have tons of blood and DNA to work with.

I think it's a great idea, as long as they don't try to "cure" anyone of their homosexuality.

I love this bit: 'Do you remember that moment you said: Hey, I think I'll be straight?'
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The Brethren Donating Member (853 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-09-06 11:21 AM
Response to Original message
6. It doesn't matter
to me if the fact that I'm gay is interdicted or by choice. I personally believe I was born gay. And if it were a choice, I would choose to be gay. I don't need a scientific DNA mark-up to tell me who I am and how I feel about myself. But what does concern me is that for some time now there have been researchers who have admitted that they would very much like to find a "gay DNA gene" so that they can then find a way to remove it. They see it along the lines of removing genes for physical handicaps and serious diseases from future births. To these researchers that is who we are...an adherent defect that needs to be removed from the human gene pool. I don't have the link to the article because it's been awhile, but one article that stood out in particular included a researcher who openly state that it was one of his goals to permanently remove homosexuality through science and DNA testing. Imagine if he had said it was his goal to remove genes that resulted in anyone becoming black or Asian for ex.

I don't know much about Dr. Sanders - whether he's well intended or a wolf in sheep's clothing. However, even if he's well intended - researchers publish and share their findings which means those who are bigots cloaked as scientist still can use that data for their own goals. I also don't know many members of our community are even aware that this is even going on, but I hope that if someone volunteers for tests/samples that they also consider how that info. maybe used.
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Boomer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-09-06 11:33 AM
Response to Reply #6
7. It's not just one gene
The assumption that there is one "gay" gene -- defective or not -- is absurd. Sexual orientation is a simplistic term for a complex confluence of hormonal, genetic, and psychological factors.

Researchers will never find what they are looking for because they are asking all the wrong questions. There is no single het/homo switch that can be flipped or deleted. No voila! you're straight or gay. Researchers don't recognize the continuums that exist for everything from gender identification to sexual drive, much less understand what creates them.

Thank god for that, because I'm sure the underlying agenda is far from benign: the eradication of homosexuality.
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The Brethren Donating Member (853 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-09-06 11:47 AM
Response to Reply #7
8. I share the same thoughts
I also question when we're told that "it doesn't matter" whether someone is gay or not. Then why ask? (meaning the science community) What difference does it make whether there is a gene or several of them that contribute to who we are or none at all? Why spend all the time and monies on endless research to find out? Why not spend that energy and finances into helping treat gay people equally - esp. legally in many areas.

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readmoreoften Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-09-06 06:21 PM
Response to Reply #7
11. In agreement 100%. So we're trying to convince fundies through science?
Meanwhile, we can't even get "fossils are not put there by God to fool us" in their thick heads? The search for the "gay gene" is the hope of "curing us"-- end of story.

You can't fight prejudice with genetic proof of "non-immorality". They will say "fine then" they aren't immoral, they are mentally ill. If they deny attempts to cure them, then they are immoral.

I don't give a flying fuck why I'm a lesbian. I'm just damn glad I am.
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Boomer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-09-06 06:54 PM
Response to Reply #11
12. Amen to that!
>> I don't give a flying fuck why I'm a lesbian. I'm just damn glad I am. <<

I LIKE being a gay woman and have no desire to change my good fortune.
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sui generis Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-09-06 12:49 PM
Response to Original message
9. "the silly notion that sexual orientation is a choice"
why in hell aren't they looking for the straight gene? I always assumed we were all basically queer until we decided break up with our hands.

So, like eye color now they want to stamp it on your passport and driver's license?

Splendid. I'd rather just be able to choose whatever I want, regardless of my genetic makeup.
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David__77 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-09-06 04:24 PM
Response to Original message
10. I don't like this at all...
What exactly is the goal of such research? That question should be clearly answered...
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Dragonbreathp9d Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-09-06 08:28 PM
Response to Original message
13. K&R
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triakis36 Donating Member (180 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-10-06 02:05 PM
Response to Reply #13
14. The fallout will probably be the same as in Autism
Some people would like to think its a disease to be cured, mostly conservatives. But many autistics see themselves as a minority that should be left alone.

I really shouldn't be using Wikipedia, but here's the reference.

If they ever find a gay gene, people are going to try to find a 'cure' and some people are going to want it. It's a dangerous path eitherway.

Wait, that sounds like X-men :eyes:
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