Homosexuals Are Born that Way

QUESTION: Homosexuals Are Born that Way


Key Questions: Are people ever born with conditions that are not normal and sometimes harmful? Is there any difference between sexual desires (“orientation”) and sexual behavior? Should people act on every desire they have? Homosexuals are born as males or females, so why should they follow their desires but not the design of their bodies?

Some homosexuals insist that they have had homosexual desires as long as they can remember. Somehow this is supposed to prove that these desires are the result of nature not nurture. But this argument ultimately fails to justify homosexual behavior or any behavior for that matter.

First, notice that “born-that-way” is an argument from nature or design: “Since I was designed with these desires, I ought to act on them.” The people who say this normally presume that the Designer is God.63

But if you insist that God designed your desires, then you cannot deny He designed your body as well.

This raises the question to homosexuals who make this argument: Why are you following your desires but not your body? After all, we’re not sure if God designed your desires, but we are certain that He designed your anatomy. Why not follow what you know is from God? Ignoring your desires can be uncomfortable, but ignoring the natural design of your body can be fatal.

We are not sure about a genetic source for homosexual desires because after many years of intense research, a genetic component to homosexual desires has not been discovered. We know genetics cannot explain homosexual desires completely. If they did we would expect identical twins to have the same desires, but twins do not. In fact, it’s doubtful that genetics explains anything about homosexual desires. How would a homosexual “gene” be passed on?

Homosexuals don’t pass on anything because they don’t reproduce. Instead of nature, one’s nurture (a person’s childhood and environment) appears to have a more identifiable impact on homosexual desires. Several studies have shown that male homosexuals are more likely to come from families with a dominant mother and weak or distant father. Homosexuals are also more likely to have been sexually abused as children.64 While the nature versus nurture debate will continue, it’s probably impossible to identify all of the factors that go into a person’s desires, sexual or otherwise.

But let’s suppose that scientists someday discover a genetic contribution to homosexual desires. Would that give license to behavior? No, all of us have desires that we ought not to act on. In other words, we were all born with an “orientation” to bad behavior, but desires don’t justify the behavior. For example, some may have a genetic predisposition to alcohol, but who would advocate alcoholism? If someone has a genetic attraction to children, does that justify pedophilia? What homosexual activist would say that a genetic predisposition to violence justifies gay-bashing? (Born gay? What if the gay-basher was born mean?). Desires do not justify behaviors. In fact, there is a word we use to describe the disciplined restraint of destructive desires—it’s called “civilization.”

Let me ask you this: Should human beings act on every desire they have? For the sake of civilization, are there any desires people ought not to act on?

For any civilization to survive, quite a lot of restraint is necessary. Unfortunately, homosexual activists will have none of this. Instead of restraining negative behaviors, homosexual activists are asking us not just to tolerate but to endorse them. They want laws that will encourage people with certain desires to engage in harmful behavior. That’s exactly what the government should discourage, not promote.

63 If atheism is true and random evolutionary processes got you to this point, you are under no obligation to live in any way. There are no “oughts” if there is no God. See footnote 66 for more.

64 For a summary of these studies, see Peter Sprigg and Timothy Dailey, co-editors, Getting it Straight: What the Research Shows about Homosexuality, (Family Research Council, Washington, D.C. 2004), pgs. 1-34.

Compliments of Correct, not Politically Correct, authored by Frank Turek. For more information, visit www.impactapologetics.com.

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