The Justification of Gay

One of my fraternity brothers posted this on their Facebook this morning. It’s a really great TedTalk. It’s an interesting approach to the justification that homosexuality is genetic and not a choice.


Now, while I still unpack it, as I watched and listened to this TedTalk, I found myself thinking there was a foundation that was being evaded. After a brief but poignant chat with another fraternity brother, who is pursuing a Masters in School Psychology, I figured out what was bugging me.

It seemed that there were two underlying issues that was the grounds for the father’s need for this research. First, to confirm that being gay was genetic and not with the way the child was raised. The second was that he needed to justify his son’s purpose and worth in society as a gay man since the conclusion to the first question poised was that it was genetic. The father’s fear for his son’s safety as a gay person and whether or not he had done something to make his son be gay were no doubt key motivations for his research.

We, as mere mortals, are flawed and need to ground unknown or “scary” concepts to us with justifications.  We have to verify that being gay is genetic and not a choice. We have to justify the worth and role of a gay person to society to confirm that it is ok to accept a gay person.

While we as a society might love and accept the LGBTQ community, until we move beyond needing to justify these points, then there is still work to be done.

At no point in time is heterosexuality ever questioned about whether its genetic or a choice, and what the role for straight identified people are. This father’s desire to explain and justify his son’s identity and purpose is grounded in the socialization of homophobic ideas and practices that have been poisoning society for millennia.  Until this same mindset becomes inherent towards the LGBTQ community, even the best talks with the best intentions are still flawed. And it’s that exact need of wanting explanation that is the macro-underlying issue. Now whether or not that makes the father homophobic is up to the individual. I personally would say he is NOT homophobic. I think for me there has to be negative intent for me to call a person homophobic, but that’s something to be unpacked at a later date.

Even though I think the inherent reason for the father to need to justify and explain his son’s identity is rooted in homophobia, I think that this Talk is a great resource to start several various conversations in regards to the LGBTQ community.

Just some musings about a great resource, so thanks for processing with me!

Until next time

Peace, Love and Pandas!

Published by Brian

I am currently the Assistant Director of Student Life for Registered Student Organizations and Late-Night Programming at Michigan State University. After earning my B.A. from the University of Michigan-Flint, I entered the Student Affairs profession. After a few years in the field, I returned to school and earned my M.A. in Educational Leadership-Higher Education Student Affairs from Eastern Michigan University. In my spare time I blog about my thoughts and musings on current issues in higher education, student affairs, digital worlds, identity development and general life inspirations and observations. I also volunteer a lot for my fraternity and multiple regional and national professional associations.

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