Volume 49 Number 44
                    Produced: Tue Aug  9  5:23:58 EDT 2005

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

Gay Child Molestation (2)
         [Mordechai, Avi Feldblum]
Gender and Sex (2)
         [Meir, Avi Feldblum]
Hard-wired sexuality? (2)
         [Bernard Raab, Tom Buchler]
Sexual Imprinting?
         [Leah S. Gordon]
Sexual preferences hard wired


From: Mordechai <mordechai@...>
Date: Mon, 08 Aug 2005 21:44:21 -0400
Subject: Gay Child Molestation

R E Sternglantz wrote
>Child molestation has nothing to do with homosexuality, typical or
>otherwise.  Most child molesters/pedophiles are heterosexual males.

Actually it has alot to do with homosexuality.  The same arguements can
be used for both.  Gay activists argue that they were born this way
because no one would choose such an unpopular orientation.  Advocates of
adult child sex use the same arguement.  Historically gay relationships,
such as shown in ancient Greece have been between older men and

I recommend people who are concerned about this issue to review the
organization NAMBLA [pro-pedaphilia organization. Mod.] website.

For example they note "...Pederasty 
is the main form that male homosexuality has acquired throughout Western 
civilization - and not only in the West! Pederasty is inseparable from 
the high points of Western culture - ancient Greece and the Renaissance...."

Additionally they bring how many mainstream gay activists support adult 
child relations

The gay rights movement is the child molestors movement as well.  Once 
society starts writing marriage contracts for consenting adults it will 
start to move to lower the age of consent to allow any child to choose 
to have sex with adults.

From: Avi Feldblum <avi@...>
Date: Tue, 09 Aug 2005
Subject: Gay Child Molestation

I feel compelled to point out that just because NAMBA ties itself to
mainstream gay rights activists, that does not mean that mainstream gay
rights activists support NAMBA. In addition, it is my personal opinion
that arguements such as the above is basically an attempt to avoid any
real discussion about the Frum and Gay issues that are real ones that
need to be dealt with by our community. Pretty much no-one is trying to
support a Frum and NAMBA in our community.



From: <meirman@...> (Meir)
Date: Mon, 08 Aug 2005 23:13:24 -0400
Subject: Re: Gender and Sex

>From: Orrin Tilevitz <tilevitzo@...>

>  ...Theodore Bernstein's 1958 book, "Watch Your Language", states:
>"Gender pertains to grammatical distinctions, sex to physiological

I agree with this citation and all the others you made.  Since I've been
alive during most or all of the effort to add a new definition to
"gender", I feel qualified to comment.  People began to use "gender"
instead of "sex" because "sex" sounds too.... sexual.  They were
embarrassed to say "sex".

>  But to my mind, it's a politically correct misuse.

This is the only sentence of yours I disagreed with.  I don't think
there is anything political about it.  It's about modesty.  Misplaced
modesty, but still.

Since we are or I am talking about avoiding words, another word commonly
avoided, in America and I'm sure many other places, is "Jew".  More than
half of the people I hear, both Jews and gentiles, will go out of their
way to say "Jewish person" instead of Jew.  If you haven't noticed this
yet, you probably will if you try. Their motivations are usually
positive, but their reasons are sad.  The Christian Bible and Christian
hate mongers have made Jew a dirty word, so people who don't dislike us
try to find a "nicer" word to refer to us with.  This has been confirmed
to me when I asked open-ended questions of one gentile and one Jew.
Both said that "Jew" sounded harsh.  Of course, if the sentence refers
for some reason to a Spanish person and a Swedish person, it should
finish with a Jewish person.  But you will hear people talk about a
Spaniard, a Swede, and a Jewish person.  Often, neither Jew nor Jewish
person violates parallelism, or there is nothing parallel in the
sentence, and in such cases, "Jewish person" is ten to one more likely
to be used.  "Jewish people" is very often used to avoid saying "Jews"
but not quite as often as with the singular.  I think the best way to
handle this is to repeat the sentence someone else has said, replacing
"Jewish person" with Jew, until those people get the idea that Jew is a
good word.  We should also start using "Jewess" whenever it fits the
sentence.  That appears to be another word the antisemites have given a
negative meaning to in the ears of many, but even if this can't be
proven, it's a good word and we should use it.

<meirman@...>  Baltimore, MD, USA

From: Avi Feldblum <avi@...>
Date: Mon, 08 Aug 2005 23:13:24 -0400
Subject: Re: Gender and Sex

In regard to comments by <meirman@...> (Meir) and Orrin Tilevitz
<tilevitzo@...> on usage of Gender to refer to sex based
catagories as incorrect, largely based on earlier 20th century texts. I
think I was one of those who used Gender in that fashion, and I do not
disagree that it is not the original usage of the word. However, if you
look at almost any current modern English dictionary you will find the
second usage as well. Here is a Usage Note from the American Heritage
Dictionary online:

   Usage Note: Traditionally, gender has been used primarily to refer to
   the grammatical categories of .masculine,. .feminine,. and
   .neuter,. but in recent years the word has become well established in
   its use to refer to sex-based categories, as in phrases such as
   gender gap and the politics of gender. This usage is supported by the
   practice of many anthropologists, who reserve sex for reference to
   biological categories, while using gender to refer to social or
   cultural categories. According to this rule, one would say The
   effectiveness of the medication appears to depend on the sex (not
   gender) of the patient, but In peasant societies, gender (not sex)
   roles are likely to be more clearly defined. This distinction is
   useful in principle, but it is by no means widely observed, and
   considerable variation in usage occurs at all levels.

And here is the entry from the Compact Oxford English Dictionary:


  . noun 1 Grammar a class (usually masculine, feminine, common, or
  neuter) into which nouns and pronouns are placed in some languages. 2
  the state of being male or female (with reference to social or
  cultural differences). 3 the members of one or other sex.

  . DERIVATIVES gendered adjective.

  . USAGE The words gender and sex both have the sense .the state of
  being male or female., but they are typically used in slightly
  different ways: sex tends to refer to biological differences, while
  gender tends to refer to cultural or social ones. 

Avi Feldblum


From: Bernard Raab <beraab@...>
Date: Mon, 08 Aug 2005 18:04:33 -0400
Subject: RE: Hard-wired sexuality?

>From: Sammy Finkelman <sammy.finkelman@...>
>From: Ari Trachtenberg <trachten@...>
>>...There are, for example, cases of identical
> > twins (i.e. genetically identical) where one twin considers herself
> > homosexual and the other does not.
>There are not just isolated cases. The number is at least 50%. Which
>means, you are forced to agree, that no more than 50% of male
>homosexuals can be hardwired at birth. And that is a ceiling, a maximum,
>not a floor.

There is so much that is wrong about this posting that I do not have the
koach to address it all. Just one illustration of the logical fallacy in
his thinking: Finkelman seems to think that because in the case of
identical twins where one sibling claims to be homosexual, only about
half of the other siblings are likewise homosexual ( if this data is to
be believed), that this "proves" that, at most, only 50% of homosexuals
are "hardwired", i.e., have no choice in their sexual preference. But I
wonder which of the twins was "hardwired" and which freely chose their
sexual orientation. He doesn't say. I am guessing he thinks that the gay
sibling is the one who chose to be gay, and the straight sibling was
hardwired. But he might have just as reasonably claimed that the reverse
is true: that the gay sibling was hardwired and the straight twin made
the choice! In fact he goes on to argue, with no more justification in
observation or in science, that sexual orientation is pretty much always
a choice, determined by some early "imprinting".

BTW, he seems to assume that such twins are always the offspring of
homosexual couples (as if such couples can have offspring!). But there
is nothing in the article he cites to establish that impossible
"fact". Just another illustration of his completely non-scientific
predisposition.  Hopefully, others will go on to complete the demolition
of this posting.

b'shalom--Bernie R.

From: Tom Buchler <tbuchler@...>
Date: Mon, 08 Aug 2005 11:55:42 -0400
Subject: Re: Hard-wired sexuality?

      From: Sammy Finkelman <sammy.finkelman@...>
      Another point, The number of homosexuals. This has been greatly
      exaggerated. It is not 10% of course, nd not 3% and not even 1%. I
      think the true figure in the United States of America is more like
      1/3 of 1%.

      I calculated this several ways. One way I did was to take the
      number of homosexuals who had died of AIDS as of the year 1991,
      which was around 100,000. I then guessed at what percentage of all
      homosexuals alive in the year 1980 this might be. This surely was
      at least 1/3. It was described and perceived as a plague - people
      dying all over.  If 1/3 then the total original number of male
      homosexuals in the United States in 1980 was about 300.000. There
      were about 100 million males in round numbers. Do the arithmetic
      and you get a proportion of 3 in a thousand. If the percentage was
      higher than 1/3 by the end of 1991 than the percentage of male
      homosexuals was even lower. And if it was lower, then the death
      rate was higher - there is a one to one correspondence between the
      two figures - even if you don't know the exact numbers, one is a
      function of the other. While we don't know the exact numbers we do
      know that certain estimates are reasonable and others are not.

      You cannot go by polls, by the way, because whenever the true
      incidence of anything is below 1% or 2% polls are probably

OK. Let's presume you can't go by polls. So instead you start with a
figure based on a poll indicating what number of people who died of AIDS
in 1991 where homosexual (how does one get the percentage of homosexual
versus heterosexusal AIDS deaths other than by asking, or are dead
homosexuals and heterosexuals are easier to distinguish from one another
than live ones?), and then GUESS what percentage of all homosexuals
alive in 1980 (whose number we can't know because we can't rely on
polls) died of AIDS by using the word PLAGUE to say at least 1/3?

So I should take the number 0.33% based on shaky numbers extrapolated by
means of a guess as more reliable than a 10% figure based on asking
people whether they are something that many are reluctant to admit?
Please pardon my vitriol, but give me a break about what is or is not



From: Leah S. Gordon <leah@...>
Date: Mon, 08 Aug 2005 06:17:03 -0700
Subject: Sexual Imprinting?

Sammy Finkelman wrote, in part:
>It is quite true that male homosexuals cannot be changed. The way I
>explain this fact is that men are *imprinted* by their first sexual
>activity. But it no more inherited or destined at birth than is

I find this idea preposterous.  The vast majority of US teenagers have
both heterosexual and homosexual "experimental" sexual experience in
high school, regardless of eventual (or initial) orientation.

If you mean that in some cases of abused children, their sex lives are
informed by their victimization, then I would have to agree.  But to say
that someone (and why do you you limit yourself to males btw?) is
imprinted by their first sexual encounter...what evidence do you have?

And, how would this explain those first-hand accounts we saw right here
on M.J of frum gay men married to women, who couldn't keep themselves
from straying and having a gay affair?  Or the cases of women who
divorce after long marriages, and take up happily with other women?

--Leah S. R. Gordon


From: Fen <fenellam@...>
Date: Mon, 8 Aug 2005 16:16:58 +0200
Subject: RE: Sexual preferences hard wired

I am not familiar enouigh with the history of this debate to know where
it is going halachically, or learned enough to comment on the halachic
issues, but as regards the hardwiring issue, I have met many different
types of people and worked in mental health (where a disproportionate
number of clients seemed to be lesbians - this could be a whole chicken
or egg debate).  It is clear that human preferences/ disposition for
anything come in a continuum, with various shades of grey inbetween.  It
is not as simple or monolithic as a 'genetics' vs 'environment' debate.

Some people describe very clearly always feeling sexually different to
the rest of society and seem to look different as well - very masculine
women and very feminine men, which may seem to be a cliche but there are
such examples and from my observations they are the ones who describe
feeling that they were born homosexual.  That would seem to be a
'hardwiring' issue.

Other people describe having a traumatic experience with members of the
opposite sex, or their parents, and then learning gay behaviour /
preferences.  Clearly that is environmental factor on top of a genetic
predisposition - many people have had bad experiences and they don't all
end up homosexual.

There can also be cases where it is purely behavioural / peer group
pressure.  I knew someone who was happily married to a man who had been
sexually abused as a teenager at boarding school, and as his first
sexual experience was homosexual, he was thereafter conditioned to react
sexually to members of his own sex.  I think he had counselling and
retrained his thought patterns.  It could also be that some people are
more conditionable than others as a result of genetics.

As to statistics, in the UK it was quoted that 10% (ie 1 in 10) of
people were gay or bisexual.  I suspect it is rather lower in the Jewish
population, though whether as a result of Har Sinai, different
conditioning, lack of acceptability or plain inability to admit to it,
is anyones guess.



End of Volume 49 Issue 44