Two prominent scholars at Johns Hopkins University have released a lengthy, three-part report concluding that there’s not sufficient evidence to prove there is a ‘gay gene’.
The study states: “The understanding of sexual orientation as an innate, biologically fixed property of human beings – the idea that people are ‘born that way’ – is not supported by scientific evidence.”
“The hypothesis that gender identity is an innate, fixed property of human beings that is independent of biological sex – that a person might be ‘a man trapped in a woman’s body’ or ‘a woman trapped in a man’s body’ – is not supported by research.”
Their findings, written by Dr. Lawrence S. Mayer and Dr. Paul R. McHugh, published in the fall issue of the quarterly journal The New Atlantis, is titled Sexuality and Gender: Findings from the Biological, Psychological, and Social Sciences.
Mayer and McHugh considered more than 200 peer-reviewed studies related to human sexuality.
The authors said the paper was specifically written for the general public to draw attention to mental health problems of the LGBT community. McHugh is an opponent of sex reassignment surgery for transgender people, arguing that it often fails to improve their well-being and instead does the opposite in the long run.
Factors, such as social and cultural environments, play a role in sexual attraction and behavior, Mayer and McHugh wrote.
“The ‘born that way’ notion that homosexuality and heterosexuality are biologically innate or the product of very early developmental factors” is “not a view that is well-supported by research.” However, some people may be more genetically predisposed toward homosexuality as “there is some evidence from … twin studies that certain genetic profiles probably increase the likelihood the person later identifies as gay or engages in same-sex sexual behavior.”
Many members of the LGBT community have yet to comment on the report’s findings.