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December 23, 2003

Gay is a "social construct"

Gay Jewish writer gives up sex with men. Here are some money quotes:

But Benkof concluded that being gay is a social construct not intended by God, thus ruling out his justification for man-on-man sex.

"Historians all agree that there is no evidence of a gay minority," he said. "If that's true, it means that God doesn't make people gay. That doesn't mean it is a choice, but a social construct."


But he identifies as a bisexual who refrains from his desire for men.

Though the ex-gay profiled in the article is only marginally a conservative (note his policy positions), his conservatization on his homosexuality freely makes use of traditionally Ivory Tower terminology like "social construct."

On bisexuality: Here is a quote from psychologist Michael Bailey (the page being quoted can be found via the link):

Although there are clearly men who call themselves "bisexual" and who have sex with both men and women, both scientists and laypeople have long been skeptical that men with bisexual arousal patterns exist. Kurt Freund, who invented penile plethysmoography, related that he was never able to find a subset of men who appeared bisexual in the lab.

I remained agnostic on this particular issue until confronted by the penile data point. After all, the cock does not lie.

Personally, I don't understand why religious gays assume that if they are hard-wired that way than God must think that it's OK, do they live in Leibniz's best-of-all worlds or what? Some people are born with far more severe social and physical problems than a particular behavioral orientation-and no one assumes that God must approve of kids who are dwarfs, have missing limbs or a fatal disease.

Posted by razib at 08:34 PM