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MiscKitty
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Dec 20, 2014 MiscKitty commented on Savage Love.
@ Old Crow - Sources, plzkthx.
Dec 19, 2014 MiscKitty commented on Savage Love.
@ 104 -

"οἰκέται (household slaves), in reverent fear of God submit yourselves to your masters, not only to those who are good and considerate, but also to those who are harsh."
1 Peter 2:18

"δοῦλοι (slaves), obey your earthly masters with respect and fear, and with sincerity of heart, just as you would obey Christ."
Ephesians 6:5

"All who are under the yoke as δοῦλοι (slaves) should consider their masters worthy of full respect, so that God's name and our teaching may not be slandered."
1 Timothy 6:1

"The δοῦλος (slave) who knows the master's will and does not get ready or does not do what the master wants will be beaten with many blows. But the one who does not know and does things deserving punishment will be beaten with few blows. From everyone who has been given much, much will be demanded; and from the one who has been entrusted with much, much more will be asked."
Luke 12:47-48

"Masters, provide your δούλοις (slaves) with what is right and fair, because you know that you also have a Master in heaven."
Colossians 4:1
Dec 19, 2014 MiscKitty commented on Savage Love.
@ Mr Ven - Sorry for not responding to you on last week's column. It was late when I read your post and I planned to reply in the morning but I flaked.

No worries about being touchy on this topic. I don't think you were at all but even if you had been, I absolutely wouldn't blame you.

Hating gay people is less scripturally important than, say, slavery. Or giving away all of your worldly wealth. But Christianity has abandoned both of those practices to varying degrees even though they play such a major role in the Bible. I think your jenga tower analogy is excellent. But I don't think removing the "we hate gay people" block will necessarily make the whole tower fall over. Instead, I think the tower is being slowly deconstructed, block by block. And now it's a much smaller tower than it was back when society removed the "we hate lefties" block.

That said, I absolutely agree that they're clinging to that "we hate gay people" block tooth and nail. And I think the real reason for that is extremely self serving: Same-sex attraction is THE sin, right? Even though the Bible doesn't support that contention, the people who use religion as an excuse for their bigotry fixate on same-sex pairings. By contrast, most of them ignore what the Bible says about divorce or gluttony or being rich, even though all of those things are presented as being more important within the scripture. But that makes a certain kind of sense. If they are straight, think about how easy it is for them to be "good Christians." All they have to do is not have sex with other dudes* and be assholes to anyone who does. Then they're better than everyone else and they get to go to heaven. And they didn't want to do have sex with other dudes* anyway.

*substitute "chicks" if the bigot in question is a woman

I don't entirely disagree with your point about eugenics. Science, medical science especially, likes to find uses for information. But an understanding of the cause isn't necessarily a requirement for finding "a cure." Since 1984, the steroid dexamethasone has been administered prenatally to prevent the cosmetic effects of congenital adrenal hyperplasia. It feminizes the female fetus. As a result, in addition to preventing masculine-looking genitalia, it decreases the occurrence of "masculine" behavior and also decreases the rate of same-sex attraction. This is the best write-up on the topic that I could find:

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles…

Here's another write up if you're not partial to reading medical journal articles:

http://www.thehastingscenter.org/Bioethi…

So what you are concerned about is already possible to a certain degree. No solving necessary. That's why I believe that increased understanding, hopefully leading to increased acceptance, is so important. In order for parents to choose to prevent themselves from having gay kids (if and when that choice becomes available) they need to see having a gay kid as a problem in the first place. Parents who don't see having a gay kid as a bad thing are much less likely to choose to prevent themselves from having one.

Changing gears completely if you don't mind and please accept my sincere apology if any of the following is assholish in any way: how does the top/bottom vs total top/total bottom thing work? Is it primarily a sensation preference for tops and bottoms? And for total tops and total bottoms, you said that the opposite role was a total turn off (almost like another layer of sexual orientation?) but you also talked about constructed roles leading to a complete lack of versatility, so is there some element of development there?
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Dec 14, 2014 MiscKitty commented on Savage Love.
@ Erica P & LavaGirl

To my knowledge, no predictive studies have been done on children. But I will dig around later and if I find anything, I'll share it. All of the studies I posted were done before the individuals involved began receiving hormone therapy, which is an important bit of information.

Regarding the "nature vs nurture" question, I would recommend that you both read about David Reimer. A brief summary: David Reimer was a cis boy who, after a botched circumcision, was subjected to removal of his testicles and was raised as a girl. They begun giving him estrogen when he was eight. All of this was done under the supervision of a prominent psychologist at Johns Hopkins. It didn't work. They were unable to turn David Reimer into Brenda Reimer.

The details of the case are truly bizarre and it certainly isn't sufficient evidence from which we can draw definitive conclusions, but I thought it was worth mentioning just the same. If you'd like to read more about it, the Wikipedia page is a great place to start:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/David_Reime…

@ LavaGirl - Something else that might interest you regarding brain elasticity - studies similar to those I linked have been done to compare the brains of homosexual and heterosexual individuals. As with the studies of trans* individuals, they found that there are structural differences in the brains of the individuals they examined. For example, the suprachiasmatic nucleus of homosexual males is almost twice the size of the suprachiasmatic nucleus of heterosexual males (Swaab & Hofman 1990).

So if you believe that brain elasticity is relevant in trans* people, do you also apply that belief to gay people? Or do you believe, in the case of the latter, that it's okay that their brains, and therefore their identities, are different? And if you accept that the difference in gay people isn't a delusion, why not accept that the difference in trans people isn't, either?
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Dec 14, 2014 MiscKitty commented on Savage Love.
Mr. Ven, unless you were attending Catholic school in the 15th century, I am uncertain why you believe that the lack of prejudice you experienced is indicative of a lack of historical prejudice. Being left handed has been punishable by death in more places and over more time than being gay. The religious obsession with same sex attraction is, relatively speaking, pretty new.

I'm sorry that you feel the way you do about science. And I hope the positive changes we have seen within the past 50 or so years are an indication of how fast things will continue to improve. Then maybe you'll eventually be able to share my optimism.
Dec 14, 2014 MiscKitty commented on Savage Love.
@ LavaGirl - You aren't the sort of person I was talking about. Mr. Ven is suggesting the inevitability of eugenics to rid the world of gay people should science ever unearth an explanation for why there are gay people. I was acknowledging that people who would be in support of that sort of behavior will always exist but disputing how much power they will have in the future.

That said, research has been done on gender identity and the jury is no longer out on the subject. Trans* people are not delusional. Their brains are physically aligned with the gender they identify as. You are, quite simply, wrong.

http://cercor.oxfordjournals.org/content…

http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn20…

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles…

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Dec 12, 2014 MiscKitty commented on Savage Love.
@ Mr. Ven - Just like we don't have anyone born with Down Syndrome now? Except that's not the case. People do still choose to carry kids with Down Syndrome to term. And Down Syndrome is fundamentally different from sexual orientation or gender identity on pretty much every possible level.

If you want to draw a more similar example from history, look at people who are left handed: born of good, God fearing right handed people, declared evil by the Catholic Church and perverse/savage by crackpot doctors, tortured for "conversion" purposes, and put to death if it didn't work. Sounds painfully familiar, right? But how many parents today would abort their fetus for being left handed?

And I think that's where we're going to go in the future with regards to sexual orientation and gender identity. As it becomes normalized and better understood, I expect the prejudice to gradually fade away. I'm sure there will always be vile people who cling to their bigotry, but that's true of any bigotry. And they will have to keep their mouths shut about it in polite society.
Dec 11, 2014 MiscKitty commented on Savage Love.
@ Mr. Ven - I'm trying to think of an example in which widely understood and accepted understanding gained through scientific research has resulted in more prejudice rather than less. I cannot. Can you?
Dec 10, 2014 MiscKitty commented on Savage Love.
@ uncreative - Damn. Well, I had to ask. And thanks anyway. I'll keep digging around and WHEN I come across something ('cause if it's not out there now, it's just a matter of time until it is) I'll be sure to give you a heads up and a link in one of Dan's comments sections so you can read it, too. =)
Dec 10, 2014 MiscKitty commented on Savage Love.
@ nocutename - "I'm not trying to be snide or to defend old gender norms or roles. I'm trying to see where I get my sense of being a woman comes from or if that is different from my feeling of being female or my knowledge that biologically and genetically I'm a cis-gendered female. It makes me wonder where this sense of ourselves as gendered comes from, beyond culture."

This is by no means a complete answer but I would like to provide the information I have on the topic: Our gender comes, at least in part, from the physical structure of our brains.

Please forgive the following gross oversimplifications: men have more gray matter (in terms of computers, think of gray matter as your hard drive plus your processor - that is where your information is stored and, well, processed) while women have more white matter (think of white matter as your RAM and your bus - it controls how quickly your information gets delivered). Even before beginning hormone therapy, trans* women have brains that are physically more like cis women than like cis men and trans* men have brains that are physically more like cis men than like cis women.

I don't know yet how agender identification fits into this. I've tried to research it a few times with no luck at all. But if I may hazard a guess... (And not even an educated guess - this is pure conjecture on my part.) I wonder if gender is a spectrum like sexuality. Some people feel VERY female or VERY male while some people feel not female or male at all. And if that's the case, it might be a function of hormones (which might help to explain why some people identify as gender fluid) or it might be tied to the physical structure of the brain or who knows what.

But I do believe that if we are patient, science will eventually fill in the gaps (if it hasn't already). And we will learn, as we have so many times before, that the people who told us who they are were right all along. And anyone who told them they were wrong about who they are was just plain ignorant.*

*disclaimer: Yada yada teenagers yada yada brain development isn't complete until you're 25 yada yada that's not an excuse to be a dick and it doesn't mean they're wrong just because they're young. Yada.
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