Friday, June 13, 2014


Saw this video on storypick today, originally made by Artists At Work (without the caption added by storypick). [link]

First, the caption:
While I support the idea (that we shouldn't discriminate against people of whatever sexual orientation), the text underneath the video at is inaccurate - there is no solid evidence that sexuality (specifically, homosexuality) is hardwired at birth in humans.

It is far more likely that, just like with almost everything else, sexuality is a complex thing, brought about by a mixture of genes, hormones, environmental factors, etc. Also, as Frank Bruni says, "The born-this-way approach carries an unintended implication that the behavior of gays and lesbians needs biological grounding to evade condemnation" - why should it? In many ways, it's tantamount to saying "I would rather not be gay, because it's clearly wrong, but I have no choice!"

Also, the underlying assumption that everything that is "natural" or "hardwired" deserves to exist in society is something I disagree with. (Note that this is used by the other side as well, when they call homosexuality "unnatural", comfortably ignoring the fact that it exists in multiple species, from sheep to chimpanzees to penguins.)

So what if something is natural? Polio is natural; anti-venom is not. LGBTQA - wherever on the spectrum you might fall, I'm generally of the opinion that the only time you need to know someone's sexuality is when you're asking them out / (in the case of many Indians) getting into an arranged marriage.

Second, the video:
I also have some issues with the video itself. So what if people can't "tell the difference"? You imply that if people could tell the difference, then there would be some justification for discriminating against people of a particular sexual orientation. Let's say that all lesbians have bright blue hair. Does that mean that it's ok to deny them promotions? I can usually tell the difference between males and females - so it's ok to discriminate against one or the other? I understand that the video was made with the idea "hey, these people are just like the rest of us" (targeted at those who would create an us-them equation), but that path, to me, is wrong. So what if people are different?

Annoying nitpicking aside, kudos to AAW for trying to make a difference.

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