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Thread: Big Bad Bears - Russia and Putin

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    Banned. Children Banned. Grandchildren Banned. 3 Months. Charlie Darwin's Avatar
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    You don't have to be born gay for it to be natural and homosexuality doesn't need to be hard-wired in your DNA to be innate.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Charlie Darwin View Post
    You don't have to be born gay for it to be natural and homosexuality doesn't need to be hard-wired in your DNA to be innate.
    Charlie, I agree with both points of yours, and reasonably both points are the same. It can be a natural disposition or more attractive. It could be the result of sexual abuse as a child. It could be the result of your first sexual experience being with a member of the same sex, or a terrible experience with a member of the opposite sex. it could be from warped parenting, or any number of other nurture reasons. I find it offensive when it is "born this way". It is wrong on many levels. That, ridiculous standpoint, forces those who feel that they may actually prefer a same sex relationship like they are somehow wrong. That since they didn't come out earlier that their feelings are wrong.

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    Banned. Children Banned. Grandchildren Banned. 3 Months. Charlie Darwin's Avatar
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    Well, with all due respect, I don't think you're really in a position to be finding that offensive. Especially when you are speculating that they might be gay due to sexual abuse or warped parenting, which I think the vast majority of people would perceive as being far more callous, insulting and offensive than people having the temerity to be gay and, in your words, "shove it in your face".

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    Quote Originally Posted by Charlie Darwin View Post
    Well, with all due respect, I don't think you're really in a position to be finding that offensive. Especially when you are speculating that they might be gay due to sexual abuse or warped parenting, which I think the vast majority of people would perceive as being far more callous, insulting and offensive than people having the temerity to be gay and, in your words, "shove it in your face".
    Did I write this? Shove it in your face? If I did it was a mistake, if not..I cannot find it anywhere on my posts related to homosexuality in Russia or elsewhere.

    Charlie, so I have no right to find something offensive? Hmm, not very liberal, then again. If it is not hardwired in DNA, or be born that way, can you please explain it? I gave reasons that have been given by well known (and some less well known) people for their choice. Regardless of their choice, they are entitled to be happy in their relationships as we all should be. Anyone who would try to deny this must look at themselves and see why they would wish to prevent someone else from being happy.

    I don't believe what I wrote to be callous, just a search for an explanation. I believe that spouting "I was born this way" to be an almighty offence to humanity, but if it makes them happy, I am glad for them. I can always choose to change channels or walk away.

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    Banned. Children Banned. Grandchildren Banned. 3 Months. Charlie Darwin's Avatar
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    It's on the last page - granted you're not expressing it as your own opinion but it's hard not to interpret it that way.

    I never said you had no right to find something offensive, I said you're not really in a position to be taking offence over somebody's views on why they as individuals are the way they are, particularly when you are expressing much more strident opinions yourself.

    No, I can't explain biologically why people have different sexualities, nor have I suggested I can. I would say that it's not necessarily inconsistent to suggest that sexuality is inborn but that people are still able to make certain choices or be conditioned to feel certain ways during their life. I'm not sure who you're accusing of preventing people from being happy.

    If you don't recognise the callousness of suggesting somebody could become gay because they were abused, then I suppose nothing I say could change your mind.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Charlie Darwin View Post
    It's on the last page - granted you're not expressing it as your own opinion but it's hard not to interpret it that way.

    I never said you had no right to find something offensive, I said you're not really in a position to be taking offence over somebody's views on why they as individuals are the way they are, particularly when you are expressing much more strident opinions yourself.

    No, I can't explain biologically why people have different sexualities, nor have I suggested I can. I would say that it's not necessarily inconsistent to suggest that sexuality is inborn but that people are still able to make certain choices or be conditioned to feel certain ways during their life. I'm not sure who you're accusing of preventing people from being happy.

    If you don't recognise the callousness of suggesting somebody could become gay because they were abused, then I suppose nothing I say could change your mind.
    Charlie, I know it is pedantic, but I could not find "my words" anywhere. You may have interpreted someone else's words, or even mine, but I didn't write "shove it in your face".

    Is someone telling me that science is wrong mean that I cannot question it? If I take it to another level. A person tells me - "I was born better/worse than you." I'd be offended by that in both cases as I do (maybe naively) believe we are all born equal. Again, I do not believe sexual choice (apart from the obvious deviant elements) between two consenting adults to be wrong or immoral, nor do I believe that same sex couples should be prevented registry office weddings (or if their church allows weddings between same sex couples), to each their own. Again, if a person's right to be offended is removed because they have an opinion, then we have leapt 5 steps backwards.

    Charlie, you say "biologically", does emotion or psychology not come into it? If not, then biology would rule against same sex pairings, at least in pure science, though I could be wrong. If you find one reason offered to be callous, then it is best to just close the windows and put our heads in the sand. It is interesting to know when/why people felt more attracted to the same sex, or wished to change their gender, just writing off such influences or incidents leave us less able to understand and help.

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    Banned. Children Banned. Grandchildren Banned. 3 Months. Charlie Darwin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Spudulika View Post
    Charlie, I know it is pedantic, but I could not find "my words" anywhere. You may have interpreted someone else's words, or even mine, but I didn't write "shove it in your face".
    Here:

    Quote Originally Posted by Spudulika View Post
    So what I mean by old school, is that it is like the UK or Ireland from the 1960's-70's, and that society tolerates (a terrible word) or accepts (a better word) it as long as it's not shoved in their faces.
    You didn't put it in quotation marks or anything so I can only assume you think it's a legitimate position.

    Is someone telling me that science is wrong mean that I cannot question it?
    Well I didn't tell you couldn't question it. I said your taking offence at somebody else's understanding of their personal sexuality is questionable.


    If I take it to another level. A person tells me - "I was born better/worse than you." I'd be offended by that in both cases as I do (maybe naively) believe we are all born equal.
    That's not analogous because they've made a comparison rather than make an extrapolation based on their own circumstances. If somebody is gay and every aspect of their life's experience tells them that their sexuality is innate and not learned, then I honestly can't fathom what would personally offend you about them saying it.

    Again, I do not believe sexual choice (apart from the obvious deviant elements) between two consenting adults to be wrong or immoral, nor do I believe that same sex couples should be prevented registry office weddings (or if their church allows weddings between same sex couples), to each their own. Again, if a person's right to be offended is removed because they have an opinion, then we have leapt 5 steps backwards.
    Again, nobody mentioned taking away rights except you. Nobody's impeding anybody's ability or freedom to say homosexuality is a choice or an abomination or whatever.

    Charlie, you say "biologically", does emotion or psychology not come into it? If not, then biology would rule against same sex pairings, at least in pure science, though I could be wrong. If you find one reason offered to be callous, then it is best to just close the windows and put our heads in the sand. It is interesting to know when/why people felt more attracted to the same sex, or wished to change their gender, just writing off such influences or incidents leave us less able to understand and help.
    I'm not sure I follow your reason with the first two sentences. In terms of being callous, you don't really seem to understand how awful that sounds. There's no direct analogy I can make because it's a pretty weird statement to make, but I can make a much tamer comparison... I understand your (former) partner was Russian. I imagine if one of her peers asked her "what are you doing with that pasty streak of ****, were you raped by a Paddy or something?" one or both of you would take some offence, if you weren't laughing at the utterly pathetic reasoning.

    Even your last sentence betrays your opinions. You think homosexuality is something that can be "helped." I find that completely abhorrent and, honestly, small-minded.

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    Seasoned Pro peadar1987's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Spudulika View Post
    Charlie, you say "biologically", does emotion or psychology not come into it? If not, then biology would rule against same sex pairings, at least in pure science, though I could be wrong. If you find one reason offered to be callous, then it is best to just close the windows and put our heads in the sand. It is interesting to know when/why people felt more attracted to the same sex, or wished to change their gender, just writing off such influences or incidents leave us less able to understand and help.

    There are a few interesting theories about why homosexuality is selected for. There is some evidence that the female relatives of gay people are more fertile than females with no gay relatives, so there could be some sort of genetic component that is passed on preferentially through the female line. There is also a theory that gay people in small family groups improve the chances of the children of their relatives surviving by taking care of them, and the genes get passed on that way.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Charlie Darwin View Post
    Here:



    You didn't put it in quotation marks or anything so I can only assume you think it's a legitimate position.


    Well I didn't tell you couldn't question it. I said your taking offence at somebody else's understanding of their personal sexuality is questionable.



    That's not analogous because they've made a comparison rather than make an extrapolation based on their own circumstances. If somebody is gay and every aspect of their life's experience tells them that their sexuality is innate and not learned, then I honestly can't fathom what would personally offend you about them saying it.


    Again, nobody mentioned taking away rights except you. Nobody's impeding anybody's ability or freedom to say homosexuality is a choice or an abomination or whatever.


    I'm not sure I follow your reason with the first two sentences. In terms of being callous, you don't really seem to understand how awful that sounds. There's no direct analogy I can make because it's a pretty weird statement to make, but I can make a much tamer comparison... I understand your (former) partner was Russian. I imagine if one of her peers asked her "what are you doing with that pasty streak of ****, were you raped by a Paddy or something?" one or both of you would take some offence, if you weren't laughing at the utterly pathetic reasoning.

    Even your last sentence betrays your opinions. You think homosexuality is something that can be "helped." I find that completely abhorrent and, honestly, small-minded.
    You took what I wrote and changed it - putting it into quotations to try legitimise your pov, but thanks for at least drawing attention to it. And it is strange that I am not allowed to be offended yet others can be. Is that not wrong? Is that not imbalanced? A person who is offended by people drinking alcohol (a muslim for example) is entitled to feel as they are and express the same, their feeling is legitimate for them.

    I mention "biologically" because you directly said it. I do not believe a persons sexual orientation or lifestyle choice is something that can be "helped", if you believe this is the case then you need to ask yoruself questions, though you are entitled to believe so, if you bring it up, though I don't go along with it. To each their own. The peers of my former partner were largely undereducated and evolved so something as intelligible as that would be hard to imagine. Though if they felt that, what can I do? You have chosen to pick just one reason, which is odd. It doesn't make sense why you would chose just one.

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    Quote Originally Posted by peadar1987 View Post
    There are a few interesting theories about why homosexuality is selected for. There is some evidence that the female relatives of gay people are more fertile than females with no gay relatives, so there could be some sort of genetic component that is passed on preferentially through the female line. There is also a theory that gay people in small family groups improve the chances of the children of their relatives surviving by taking care of them, and the genes get passed on that way.
    Now that is interesting! I am trying to recall a study of rats where they basically implode with decreasing births and a whole section of beautiful rats who move on from mating with opposite sex and even same sex, with the community dying out.

    I'm trying to remember the name of the writer who wrote about sexuality being flexible. It was from a comparative study and I am almost certain it had some angle on the LPGA. I could be wrong to say a Dr. Black. But one of the points she made was that some people are able to adapt to environments, that we have predispositions rather than predeterminations.

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    Seasoned Pro peadar1987's Avatar
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    Was it Kinsey? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kinsey_scale

    I think the current opinion is that there is a genetic predisposition one way or the other, which is then reinforced or counteracted by people's upbringing. The relative effects of both of these aren't really known at the moment. In terms of choice though, it doesn't really matter if someone as born irrevocably gay, or turned out that way because of their upbringing, they still generally are what they are.

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    Quote Originally Posted by peadar1987 View Post
    Was it Kinsey? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kinsey_scale

    I think the current opinion is that there is a genetic predisposition one way or the other, which is then reinforced or counteracted by people's upbringing. The relative effects of both of these aren't really known at the moment. In terms of choice though, it doesn't really matter if someone as born irrevocably gay, or turned out that way because of their upbringing, they still generally are what they are.
    I saw the movie with Liam Neeson (opened the eyes I must say) and this is more along the lines of what I'd heard. There is a Doctor Black, a woman, who is openly lesbian and does couples counselling. I read an academic paper of hers (in a sports journal) and she was making the point about sexual choice etc. I agree that people are what they are. As a student of humans I always want to find out why and how etc, a predisposition makes sense, though I always fear this is seen as a weakness or aberration (again I relate back to gene therapy etc). I remember someone called Kinsey "greedy" as he wanted it all. Must watch that movie again!

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    Quote Originally Posted by bennocelt
    So if we are not catholic or deeply religious we have to follow the dictates of the state or the people?They can f off
    No they can't, no they don't, and yes you do. As you will see below.

    Quote Originally Posted by peadar1987
    And even if we were hypocrites, and only cared about the Russian laws while ignoring places like Saudi Arabia, Iran and Pakistan, it still wouldn't make the Russian position right.
    As far as the Russians are concerned, their position is right, and is what they want their society to be. They don't consider the west right to be "tolerant" of diversity, they consider us weak for having to cater for every section of society, even those we don't like and have no time for.

    It's not my religion, and Ireland is not a "catholic nation". Ireland is a secular republic, and there is separation of church and state. Laws are not, and should not, be decided on the basis of religion.
    Quote Originally Posted by jinxy lilywhite
    Before folk start harping on about Ireland being a catholic country, the church have little or no influence in Irish society anymore. The catholic church may have a mention in the constitution but doesn't the constitution recognize all religions and the freedom to practice your religion.
    I'm sorry, you're wrong there. Our abortion legislation is broadly in line with Rome's. Our education facilities were and are, by and large facilitated by various religious orders. Our christmas and easter traditions are heavily influenced by the church. We still have "fast" days, while Good Friday alcohol legislation is a sop to catholicism. The conflict in NI was fought on religious lines as well as political lines. While I'm no bible-basher, the Irish are overwhelmingly catholic, and our religion has a massive influence on our legislation and society.

    Quote Originally Posted by Spudulika
    In other news
    As you can probably see, we're way off topic at this stage, and you've been drawn into what constitutes most debate on Putin's Russia in this part of the world. Anyway, back on topic.

    Crimea has had it's power, light, gas supplies, and transport links with Ukraine cut. Tourist numbers have collapsed since they had their referendum. When you make political decisions, there are consequences. Wanting to be Russian is the least of their problems right now.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mypost View Post

    Crimea has had it's power, light, gas supplies, and transport links with Ukraine cut. Tourist numbers have collapsed since they had their referendum. When you make political decisions, there are consequences. Wanting to be Russian is the least of their problems right now.
    Thank you Mypost! And I think it's interesting that most of the debate in Ireland, UK, USA etc is about a tiny part of a law which has brought about a lot of good - cracking down on alcohol advertising, banning alcohol advertising in sports, banning alcohol sales in sports stadia, cracking down on child porn - and keeping a civil debate on society. The one element hammered is the outward promotion of alternative lifestyles - which happens to include "mystic" phonelines/ins which were milking thousands of their cash nightly. It has allowed the government away with untold excesses.

    From personal experience I can count nearly 100 people who didn't travel to Crimea this Summer, and probably the same number of people who would regularly travel to visit relatives in Ukraine in the Autumn. It's an absolute mess and both it and the Donbass have an awful stink of Transdnistria. As in any conflict zone vested interests rise to the top. In Ukraine it has always been corrupt oligarchs calling the shots, in Crimea it is local agitators and some nasty characters. Donbass the same. Today the rouble dropped again and VVP gave further assurance that his ministers won't go on holidays. It's all a show, but in our Irish "democracy" nothing of the sort happened. I will always excuse St. Patrick's Day as it is useful.

    In football news, there is an exodus of players from the country as clubs cannot afford their wages - including Tino Costa and Movsisyan. Even at the lower end of Ice Hockey foreign players are returning home. Those whose contracts are in euros or dollars are being told to find a new club, those who are paid in roubles are leaving as the exchange rate is terrible.

    One small inside fact about Tino Costa, Spartak are receiving 1.5million euros in a loan fee, he is receiving 300,000 in back wages, the rest is being divvied out amongst players as wages were not paid since early November. Apparently owner Fedun had debts called in from foreign banks and is tapped out. If he goes, the club follows.

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    International Prospect bennocelt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mypost View Post
    No they can't, no they don't, and yes you do. As you will see below.

    I'm sorry, you're wrong there. Our abortion legislation is broadly in line with Rome's. Our education facilities were and are, by and large facilitated by various religious orders. Our christmas and easter traditions are heavily influenced by the church. We still have "fast" days, while Good Friday alcohol legislation is a sop to catholicism. The conflict in NI was fought on religious lines as well as political lines. While I'm no bible-basher, the Irish are overwhelmingly catholic, and our religion has a massive influence on our legislation and society.
    Not really, I am Irish after all, a citizen of the country, that does count for something
    Church, imho, held our country back for years.

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    Seasoned Pro peadar1987's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mypost View Post
    No they can't, no they don't, and yes you do. As you will see below.



    As far as the Russians are concerned, their position is right, and is what they want their society to be. They don't consider the west right to be "tolerant" of diversity, they consider us weak for having to cater for every section of society, even those we don't like and have no time for.
    And the Russians are wrong. The Americans of the Deep South up to about 1970 didn't want their society to be unsegregated, they didn't consider the northern states right to treat blacks as equals, and they considered them weak for catering to them with all this "equal rights" nonsense.

    The UK is predominantly non-religious or protestant, depending on how the question in surveys is framed. How would you feel about it if the non-catholic majority refused to "cater for" the catholic minority? Not allowed to hold public church services (because catholicism is a non-traditional lifestyle), catholic marriages don't get the same privileges in terms of visitation rights, inheritance and child custody as protestant ones? Do you see what I'm getting at here?

    It's telling that you think the West doesn't like homosexuals and has no time for them by the way. Most people, especially those who are younger or better-educated, don't have the same problem with other people's sex lives as you do.



    I'm sorry, you're wrong there. Our abortion legislation is broadly in line with Rome's. Our education facilities were and are, by and large facilitated by various religious orders. Our christmas and easter traditions are heavily influenced by the church. We still have "fast" days, while Good Friday alcohol legislation is a sop to catholicism. The conflict in NI was fought on religious lines as well as political lines. While I'm no bible-basher, the Irish are overwhelmingly catholic, and our religion has a massive influence on our legislation and society.
    Governments always bow to pressure from powerful lobby groups and voter blocs. That doesn't make us a catholic country, we still have democracy, not some sort of grand Ayatollah dictating things from on high.

    As I said, the "catholic country" argument is a weak one. Conservatives say "Most Irish people are catholic, so therefore gay marriage should be illegal". They ignore the fact that almost 70% of Irish people think that it should be legal, regardless of their faith. That's the difference between a catholic country and a secular country that happens to contain many catholics.

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    Haven't had the chance to post in a few days, so a lot to cover...

    Quote Originally Posted by jinxy lilywhite View Post
    Homosexuality is as much about life choice as the choice of the color of your skin.
    Even if one's sexuality was a matter of choice, it wouldn't justify prejudice and discrimination. Even if sexual lifestyle, on the other hand, might be a matter of choice, it doesn't justify such either. Personally, I think sexuality, like everything we, as living beings, think or do, is influenced by a combination of one's genetic make-up and their surrounding environment. Not that that necessarily makes sexual feelings a simple matter of choice that can simply be turned on or off at whim.

    Quote Originally Posted by Spudulika View Post
    The full law was to protect youth from undue influence
    Is homosexuality an undue influence though? Why can't it be as perfectly safe, loving, human and natural a feeling as a heterosexual desire might be?

    Quote Originally Posted by mypost View Post
    But that "some" you speak of is in the billions. As I said before, the issue is simply taboo in most of the world. In extreme cases, marriages are arranged by parents. They are all in traditional format. I don't see the outrage by the west towards countries where such a practice is rife. Just pick on Russia.
    Such practices are condemned aplenty. We just happen to be having a discussion specifically on Russia here.

    Homosexuality isn't a liberal Western phenomenon either. It has been prevalent in human societies (and in the animal kingdom) since not merely the dawn of ancient history but since biological organisms capable of sexual activity came into existence.

    In order to keep the human race going, men and women are naturally attracted to each other....

    If they follow the natural path they're designed to, your life and theirs would be much easier.
    And for whatever reasons - their reasons, for reasons of biology, for reasons of personal taste, perfectly valid reasons, whatever... - some men and men and some women and women are also naturally attracted to one another. Every activity in which a human might naturally engage does not necessarily have to be an act striving towards the reproduction or continuation of our species. Although I'm sure there are evolutionary theories on why homosexual behaviours are so commonplace too. (Indeed, I see Peadar has mentioned some.) Even various species of animals have been observed engaging in homosexual acts. Bonobo apes, for example, are said to engage in homosexual behaviour to aid social cohesion. Are bonobo apes engaging in an unnatural behaviour when they do so?

    What has given you the impression that humans were designed with some specific function or purpose in mind? We don't have an objective set of essential characteristics and traits. We exist and we are what we are, or become what we become, and that is and has to be inherently natural by definition. Classification as "human" or "natural" is a completely subjective and artificial endeavour. Does absolutely everything we do have to be in promotion of our continuation as a species in order for it to be considered natural or valid? Is riding a bicycle somehow unnatural because it doesn't directly keep our race going? Is playing sport unnatural for similar reasons? What about the wearing of clothes? Or what about sexual abstinence even? You talk about Catholic doctrine and its promotion of some natural order of things, but what about sexually abstinent Catholic priests? Are they failing in their "natural obligations"?

    Of course the aforementioned activities are not unnatural. These things are all perfectly natural human activities or engagements. Why? Because humans do them. Just because we have the biological capability to reproduce, it doesn't necessitate that the sole thrust of every act in which we engage must be towards that purpose, nor does it even necessitate that every sexual act in which we might engage be working towards that purpose. Our nature frees us to do many things. Saying that we must follow some natural predetermination to reproduce would necessitate that we exist solely to have sexual intercourse with any and every member of the opposite sex whenever physically possible, for, otherwise, we'd be failing in our natural duty or purpose. I hope you can see how ridiculous your stance appears when properly illuminated under such light.

    If you disagree and can acknowledge that the emphasis of not every act in which a human can naturally engage must be towards the continuation of our species, then why distinguish a homosexual act from any other human activity? I mean, not all heterosexual-identifying men are attracted to all women and not all heterosexual-identifying women are attracted to all men. Even within these artificial sub-categories of human sexuality, there are preferences. Are you saying such preferences are also unnatural and that to be properly natural we should be attracted to every member of the opposite sex?

    Are you saying also that those in society who perceive or experience injustice should just put up with it out of convenience (even when the natural sexual desires of some might be telling them to do otherwise or when the living of a life of heterosexual pretence might be causing immense psychological turmoil and pain)? Would you accept the experience of injustice on the basis of your nature? How can you so blithely say their life would be much easier if only they just put up with it? How should they just put up with it and act completely against their nature and desires? You clearly have no comprehension of the psychology involved here, nor of the psychology of injustice. Broadly-speaking, when would any society ever progress if your unquestioning mindset was the dominant attitude? Racism would still be widespread; maybe even the slave trade. Pseudo-science once taught that the racial supremacy of certain so-called races over supposed others was the one true natural order of things. Thankfully, such nonsense has since been discredited. There would be little social advancement at all if we all lived within the limited parameters of your small-minded world, where the idea of doing new and novel things because we're capable of them would be alien.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Spudulika View Post
    Osarusan, I believe that homosexuality is a choice, albeit one brought about by many, many influences. I do not believe that people are "born this way", that is until a DNA code is produced to prove me wrong. However, like God and Santa (until age 11) I will believe in what is unseen as it cannot be explained away by science. However, I do believe it is a choice and I do not believe or feel it is wrong.
    So, when did you decide to be straight then?

    And by science/nature, we are designed to procreate, at least supposed to.
    Are we? Says who? There's no evidence anywhere to suggest that we have been designed* as a species, let alone designed with some special function or purpose in mind. Science has also observed and documented homosexuality in nature. How can that be if it is unnatural?

    *When I say "designed", I mean that there is nothing to suggest we have been designed by some intelligent or directing maker. Our biology may have the appearance of design to some, but that is simply as a result of the fact that we appear to possess a suitability towards our environment(s). That suitability is not as a result of a pre-determined design by some thinking designer though; rather, it is as a result of undirected gene mutation and natural selection, or the process of evolution, in other words. Evolution is an unthinking and undirected phenomenon not guided by intelligence or some over-riding purpose towards some pre-determined goal or end-point. It doesn't have an objective purpose or function. It just happens and we are its result. That doesn't mean that any particular human behaviour is objectively more right, natural or valid than another.

    A well known tennis player was abused by a male coach at a very young age (11-15), at 16 she was approached at a tournament by an older female player/coach who (apologies) "turned" her. From 16 to retirement she was an avowed lesbian. Then on retirement promptly married, a man, and told me to my face "It was more convenient being lesbian when I was on the tour." I can name 4 players who did the same, including a double gold winner from the USA (90's).
    Maybe she is/they are what society defines as bisexual? You could say we're all potentially pansexual. Maybe the "choice" is in whether or not we want or choose to engage in such acts commonly defined as homosexual, heterosexual or bisexual. Some of us may not engage in sexual acts at all. Just because this tennis player might have found herself to be more attracted to certain members of one sex over members of another at different points in her life doesn't invalidate her feelings or render them unnatural.

    You presumably identify as heterosexual, but that doesn't mean you find every other member of the opposite sex attractive, does it? You'll still discriminate (to use the term completely neutrally) between members of the opposite sex based on your personal preference, I would imagine. Is that something you can choose? Most probably not. Finding it more convenient (for whatever reason) to be with one member of the opposite sex over another at a particular point in time doesn't mean that your whole sexuality is a matter of whimsical choice. Why would it be any different for this tennis player?

    Quote Originally Posted by Spudulika View Post
    If not, then biology would rule against same sex pairings, at least in pure science, though I could be wrong.
    How so? Lots of biological beings (humans and animals) engage or have engaged in homosexual acts and have clearly or self-declaredly felt perfectly natural when doing so.

    Quote Originally Posted by Spudulika View Post
    I'm trying to remember the name of the writer who wrote about sexuality being flexible. It was from a comparative study and I am almost certain it had some angle on the LPGA. I could be wrong to say a Dr. Black. But one of the points she made was that some people are able to adapt to environments, that we have predispositions rather than predeterminations.
    I think Gore Vidal's thoughts on the matter ('Sexually Speaking' or 'Sex is Politics' especially) are definitely worth exploring. I think of them as being very progressive. Even some LGBT groups find it difficult to identify with or get to grips with Vidal's "haughty" opinions on sexuality (in spite of the fact he spent most of his sexual life engaging in what society would deem homosexual acts) because they transcend the concept or process of categorisation. Vidal eschewed the whole notion of sexual identity/identities.

    "Actually, there is no such thing as a homosexual person, any more than there is such a thing as a heterosexual person. The words are adjectives describing sexual acts, not people. The sexual acts are entirely normal; if they were not, no one would perform them.

    ...

    The reason no one has yet been able to come up with a good word to describe the homosexualist (sometimes known as gay, fag, queer, etc.) is because he does not exist. The human race is divided into male and female. Many human beings enjoy sexual relations with their own sex, many don't; many respond to both. This plurality is the fact of our nature and not worth fretting about."

    "Look, what I'm preaching is: don't be ghettoized, don't be categorized. Every state tries to categorize its citizens in order to assert control of them."

    Quote Originally Posted by mypost View Post
    As far as the Russians are concerned, their position is right, and is what they want their society to be. They don't consider the west right to be "tolerant" of diversity, they consider us weak for having to cater for every section of society, even those we don't like and have no time for.
    Is this your position too? The acceptance and protection of minorities and minority interests is all part and parcel of free and open democratic society. Diversity of ideas is strengthening and helps advance our understanding of ourselves and the world in which we live. That is progress and represents security in the self. Closed societies are grounded in insecurity and fear of difference because the very notion of diversity or contrasting modes of thought might be perceived as threatening to the conservation of the established order. Which is truly the weaker grounding here?

    And you may drop the "we", thanks. I'm not sure most people from Ireland would actually agree with you in positively disliking those you consider to be non-traditional.

    I'm sorry, you're wrong there. Our abortion legislation is broadly in line with Rome's. Our education facilities were and are, by and large facilitated by various religious orders. Our christmas and easter traditions are heavily influenced by the church. We still have "fast" days, while Good Friday alcohol legislation is a sop to catholicism. The conflict in NI was fought on religious lines as well as political lines. While I'm no bible-basher, the Irish are overwhelmingly catholic, and our religion has a massive influence on our legislation and society.
    Irish laws are of the people. They are not of the Catholic Church. The Catholic Church may have some influence over some of the Irish population, but we remain a secular republic. Catholicism is not "our" religion. Many Irish people subscribe to other beliefs and faith systems too, or none even. Or are you in denial of the shared Irishness of these others too? Do you deny me my Irishness because I might be an agnostic atheist?

    And just on the conflict in the north; it was not a theological conflict (and certainly not from the Irish nationalist/republican perspective oft-lazily dubbed "Catholic"). Religion came to be a social marker (for reasons other than contrasting theology), certainly, but no serious Irish republican (even if he or she also happened to be Catholic) ever got involved in the struggle out of some desire to crush Protestantism or to convert Protestants into believing in transubstantiation or the veneration of the Blessed Virgin.

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    Jesus Danny what a fantastic couple of posts
    Long Live King Kenny

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    Quote Originally Posted by DannyInvincible View Post
    Bonobo apes, for example, are said to engage in homosexual behaviour to aid social cohesion. Are bonobo apes engaging in an unnatural behaviour when they do so?
    They're an abonobonation of god.

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