Another Southpaw

Am I Left-Handed Because Of Genes? Am I Heterosexual Because Of Genes?

Ed Raymond

I celebrated International Left-Handers Day in the middle of August. I entered First Grade at District #54 in Morrison County as a lefty and left it as one after defeating a teacher who tried to turn me into a right-hander. About two percent of the populace was left-handed in the 1940’s.

In high school, baseball coaches were always looking for left-handed pitchers because we were tricky, devious, and threw funny curves. I went to college because Moorhead State was looking for a pullout guard in football and a left-handed pitcher in baseball. But I’m of kind of ambidextrous. I bat right and kick left. I can write left in a right-handed student chair. I can use chainsaws and portable electric saws without sawing off important physical parts. Golf is right-handed for me, tennis is left-handed.

Hammers are left, but dribbling a basketball was mostly right while shooting left. Oh well… Some scientists think genes determine what hand we use. Others say evolution has played its hand. Competition in sports often favors left-handers. Well over 50% of the top baseball players are left-handed. Managers love to use left-handed hitters against right-handed pitchers. If I remember, there has been only one left-handed catcher ever in the major leagues.

Practically all first basemen are left-handed because of throws to other bases. About 12% of the current population is left-handed, but competition in baseball, hockey, fencing, and table tennis employs a lot more lefties. A left-handed table tennis player must be a horror for a right-hander. If we were in a perfectly cooperative world we would all be right-handed. In a very competitive world we would be equally split between lefties and righties. Now it’s time to talk about sex.  

In A Perfect Sexual World Half Would Be Loaded With The Right Amount Of Testosterone And Half With The Right Amount of Estrogen To Make Life Simple  

But that’s not the way it is. If you want to believe in Adam and Eve, be my guest, but then you have to realize they both were not perfectly straight when they were created. There is no doubt we have had sexual and gender fluidity since our ancestor Lucy climbed out of an African tree. I wonder if Ken Koehler learned anything when he Googled “How many genders are there?” and got the answer “112.”

If you Google the LGBTQIA Resource Center it will pass a list of 108 to you. The Gallup Poll came up with the figure of 4.5% in 2018 for the number of gays in the population - after asking about 300,000 in its poll whether they were gay or not. That means we have about 15 million non-straight adults. With all of the information published in the last few years about gender fluidity and gender identity, I believe it’s more than double that. In a You Gov survey of 24-year-olds in Britain this year, just 75% said they were heterosexual while 16% said they were bisexual.

With all of the research about genes and the genome, scientists have finally given up trying to find a “gay gene.” They conclude that a variety of different genes may contribute to same-sex attraction. Koehler writes a lot about lifestyle choice. He makes the statement that we make conscious decisions regarding how to act on our sexual impulses. Sorry, Ken, that does not compute. With the kind of lifestyles gays have been forced to live for thousands of years, who would want to choose that life, even if circumstances have changed in the last two decades?

Who would choose to face discrimination 24-7? I think gay writer Owen Jones has the best answer for Koehler: “There’s the old homophobic trope that people ‘choose’’ to be gay and that falling in love with someone of the same gender is a ‘lifestyle choice.’—a perverse myth long used to punish LGBTQ people and fuel the horror of so-called conversion therapy. Believing that LBGTQ people choose their sexuality belongs in the same bin as Flat-Earthism and climate emergency denial.” And toss the tooth fairy in the bin for me.  

Why Do Most Religions End Up Treating Sex As A Deadly Pathogen?  

The Roman Catholic Church has been bedeviled by sex for 2,000 years. The Vatican has been led by Pope Julius II who contracted syphilis after the white smoke signaled his election, and by Alexander VI, a member of the very sexy Borgia family, who fathered ten children while preying over several mistresses (and rumored to have had an affair with one of his children). There are many popes who didn’t know what celibacy meant until the 11th Century but these two should provoke your interest. Perhaps other readers would be interested in why some Muslims can have four wives. That has to represent real trouble in any society. Now that we have tribes of evangelical Christians who seem to know nothing of the teachings of Jesus Christ, religious life in the United States has become very fluid, so to speak.

No wonder there’s a tsunami of young people leaving the pews of “organized” religion. While listening to the sermons of Catholic priests and Lutheran ministers over many years, I have to admit I was always entertained more by televangelist Jimmy Swaggart of the Assemblies of God. Jimmy would strut across the stage, waving a Bible in the air while spouting verses. Then he would fall to his knees with tears streaming down his upturned face, imploring God to forgive all his sins. Alas, Jimmy had committed many.

He had a bad habit of laying hands on prostitutes without a single thought of healing them of some serious malady. There’s sex rearing its ugly head again. Jimmy was defrocked for his extra-religious activities, so he became a Pentecostal minister. He is still preaching at 84 and is broadcast on 78 TV channels in 104 countries. Southern U.S. stations love him. I bet he voted for that great sinner—and the Chosen One--Donald Trump.  

We Have Two Very Uncivil Religious Wars Going On In The U.S.  

First, we have a major religious battle between Jesuits and Medievalists in the Vatican. Another lapsed Catholic, like myself, Timothy Egan of the New York Times, writes: “In Rome, as always, hypocrisy is eternal.” Pope Francis is a Jesuit who is trying to jerk his church into the 21st Century with lines such as “Who am I to judge?” about homosexuals. But the Vatican is loaded with conservative bishops and cardinals who would love to light the fagots under the sinning faggots in the city square to keep their constituents in line. Although its origins lie in Christianity, the major teachings of the church don’t seem to be connected to the teachings of Jesus Christ.

We have the conservatives with their dark-age medieval mindsets on sexuality against the scientific analysis that humans have an extremely wide range of gender fluidity and identity. Second, we have another religious battle between evangelical “Christians’ and real Christians, warped by the extreme racism of the South. Evangelicals seem to have forgotten the teachings of Christ also.

By supporting The Chosen One, Donald Trump, who probably has broken at least nine of the Ten Commandments, they have tossed aside the teachings of Christ for short-term political gain. Abortion and homosexuality, which Jesus Christ has never mentioned at all, dominate their religious thoughts. They seem to toss medical and genetic science aside effortlessly, What do you do when your seventh-month sonogram reveals your fetus has no brain? Do you take it to term? Dr. Alice Dreger, a historian of sexuality, writes: “The more science learns about sex the more we find anomalies.

Nature’s dealing with conformity all the time in brutal and loving ways and all the rest of it. It doesn’t follow the human fantasy of everybody having to be normal. And humans don’t follow that ridiculous idea either. The interplay between genetics and hormones can reprogram DNA and create mismatches in some people between their sex chromosomes and their sex hormones.” That’s how we end up with people who have no interest in sex at all, to the Jeffrey Epsteins of the world who go sex crazy, to the Bruce-Caitlyn Jenners types, transgenders who have to deal with several genders.  

Why Do People Hate Religion?  

Ex-Catholic Timothy Egan answers the question: “Vice-President Mike Pence is the chief bootlicker to a president who now sees himself in messianic terms, a president who tweets a description of himself as ‘the second coming of God.’ As hard as it is to see God II boasting about grabbing a woman’s genitals, paying hush money to a porn actress, or calling neo-Nazis ‘very fine people,’ millions of overtly religious Americans believe in some version of Jesus Trump, Superstar.” Egan also writes about the obscenity of the thrice-married Catholic Newt Gingrich, who gave his first wife divorce papers while she was lying in a hospital bed, and then married another woman who was having an adulterous affair with him during his first marriage.

What is amazing about this is the Vatican accepted Newt’s third wife Callista as Donald Trump’s ambassador to the Vatican. With female and male sexual abuse taking place within the Catholic Church, perhaps she is an appropriate appointment. Young people are leaving or not joining the Catholic and evangelical churches by the millions because Jesus Christ’s message that people will be judged by how they treat the hungry, the poor, the least among us is not mentioned much. It’s all about appointment of pro-life judges to the Supreme Court, closing down abortion clinics which are necessary for the health of women, and ensuring that homosexuals remain second-class citizens. Jesus never said a word about abortions or homosexuality. Ignorant old “prophetic” men knew nothing of genetics.

There’s a Bible verse about God checking out every fetus in the womb. Shouldn’t we assume He put a stamp of approval on every baby born regardless of gender? Lt. Commander Finnerty of the U.S. Navy flies F-18 Super Hornet fighter planes off carriers, going from zero to 160 mph in two seconds, and has flown 60 combat missions in Iraq and Afghanistan. Finnerty’s white formal dress jacket is covered with combat medals for a decade of dangerous work for us around the world. Finnerty has sacrificed a lot to defend the United States: “My children didn’t know me, I was away so much. My back’s destroyed from the G-forces .I’ve had near-death experiences from aircraft failure and I’ve seen friends die. But I’ve never betrayed the trust of my country and I’ve always answered the call.” But Emily Finnerty, who was born and raised male but knew at ten he wanted to be a female, finally told her family she wanted to live the second half of her life as a woman and wanted to adopt the name of Emily. Finnerty as a transgender wants to continue her outstanding career in the Navy but is threatened by the Trump administration’s proposals about banning transgenders from military service. Let’s hope she stays. We already have had too much ignorant medieval thinking in the 21st Century. A new question: what is a “demisexual?