View Single Post
Old 02-11-2007, 01:48 PM   #29
Spider AL
@Spider AL
A well-spoken villain...
Spider AL's Avatar
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Help, help, I'm stapled to my workstation.
Posts: 2,162
Obviously ET and Eagle and others have made their (correct) position quite clear and it needs no additional clarification. However, perhaps I can at least offer some additional reinforcement of the facts.

Originally posted by Totenkopf:

You were trying to trivialize the "preoccupation with sex" by comparing orientation to tomatoes. I merely pointed out that that's in effect what you were doing.
Once again incorrect, Tot. ET was in fact pointing out the blatant triviality of any preoccupation with sex and sexual preferences. He wasn't "trying to trivialise" anything. That's the distinction you've been missing all along.

In his initial post in this thread, post #9, ET used the perfectly applicable analogy of a subjective like or dislike of tomatoes to highlight the irrelevance and unimportance of sexual likes or dislikes. He stated: The thing I find interesting is we care so much about what it is that makes people "gay" or "not gay" but we don't seem to care so much about what it is that makes people like or dislike tomatoes. It seems like just about as pertinent a thing to care about."

You responded in your initial post, post #14, with this: "Reducto ad absurdium. I'd say that when a person's proclivity for tomatoes has an important impact on social policies, then we can put it in the same category." Essentially saying "ha! that's nonsense, because sexual orientation is regarded as important by society, and tomato-orientation isn't!"

Which clearly shows that you missed the point ET was making completely. ET was pointing out that preference for a particular sexual act is in reality no more or less important or intrinsically meaningful than preferences for particular foods, regardless of how society looks upon such things. So ET was and is correct when he notes that you missed his point.

Secondly, you seem to be under the mistaken impression that "reductio ad absurdum" is the name of a logical fallacy. It isn't. It's a legitimate method of logical argument historically used by major philosophers to show absurdity in the assertions of others, and I encourage you to go and look it up to gain a better understanding of it.

Originally posted by Totenkopf:

You view things through a much more liberal lens than most of the population on this issue.
You say this as if it's a bad thing. The majority of the US population hates, mistrusts or otherwise looks down on atheists, and directly or indirectly supports international aggression... so if ET is more "liberal" on these issues than the majority of the US public, that's a big mark in ET's favour. I for one am more liberal than the US majority. of course I'm also more conservative, because unlike most people, I actually understand what conservatism means.

Also, I don't know what you think your statement proves. It's a shameless logical fallacy, the "appeal to popularity". If the majority of Americans think a certain way... that doesn't make it any more right, nor any less reprehensible. Try using reason and logic to form your opinions and defend your arguments in future, please.

Originally posted by Totenkopf:

Your unwillingness to think or feel that the issue matters reflects your more hedonistic or libertine outlook on matters of sex.
Bahahaha! So if ET believes that the question of where you like to stick your ding-dong isn't as earth-shatteringly important as most buffoons make it out to be... He's expounding the views of a hedonist and a libertine?

That is the most pathetically nonsensical assertion I've read all week.

Originally posted by Totenkopf:

But frankly, the comparison is there not ONLY to suggest equivalency between the two but also to suggest that that is the solution people SHOULD arrive at anyway.
But of course they should arrive at this conclusion Tot, because it's the logical conclusion to arrive at. Let's examine the reasoning behind the position that (consentual) sexual preferences are not intrinsically important.

Well, what are the reasons (if any) for thinking that abberrant, consentual sexual preferences are any more important than a like or dislike of tomatoes, or any other subjective culinary preference?

There are only three:

1. Aberrant consentual sexual preferences are socially unacceptable in some places! (appeal to popularity - fallacious)

2. Aberrant consentual sexual preferences are unacceptable to my deity of choice: The almighty [insert deity of choice here]! (religiously dogmatic opinion - fallacious)

3. Some aberrant consentual sexual preferences entail higher health-risks to the participants! (True, but frankly it's their choice as consenting adults. Therefore it's no more "important" to the running of society than taking up smoking in private. So while I choose not to smoke, I don't consider it a vital social issue that others do choose to smoke.)

So we see that there is no good reason, no logical reason to regard these sexual preferences as intrinsically important matters. And I for one have no patience with anyone who regards their own sexual preferences as an important matter, or anyone else's sexual preferences as an important matter. End of story.


Originally posted by Dagobahn Eagle:

in fact, I'm wondering what's taking Spider so long - he's way overdue with his rant about how marriage is an obsolete institution and how homosexuality and sports bag rape are non-issues.
Marriage is an obsolete institution and homosexuality and sports-bag rape are non-issues.


Originally posted by Ray Jones:

I think Spider's late because his wife tied him to the kitchen sink for luuuuurve err.. purposes.
You're partially correct, but it wasn't my wife. She said her husband's name was "Ray" or something like that.


Finally, as regards the question posed in the thread title, it's been accurately answered several times. There is no concrete evidence to suggest that sexual preferences are entirely genetically determined, nor is there any concrete evidence to suggest that sexual preferences are entirely determined by environment (nurture), nor by choice (either conscious or unconscious).

Therefore, bearing in mind Dawkins' great quotation: "...when two opposite points of view are expressed with equal intensity, the truth does not necessarily lie exactly halfway between them. It is possible for one side to be simply wrong." One must come to the conclusion that sexual preferences are in all probability determined by a combination of genetic predispositions, and/or childhood environment, and/or conscious and unconscious choices... and the extent to which each factor influences an individual is unknown and probably varies between individuals.

And until new evidence is presented, this is really all we can posit on the subject, vague as it is.

But it's really bloody unimportant anyway. I say to mankind: stop harping on about your own sexual perversions and stop caring about everyone else's.

[FW] Spider AL
Hewwo, meesa Jar-Jar Binks. Yeah. Excusing me, but me needs to go bust meesa head in with dissa claw-hammer, because yousa have stripped away meesa will to living.
Spider AL is offline   you may: