Homosexuality - Gay

June 25, 1978 - The rainbow flag representing gay pride
first flew in the San Francisco Gay Freedom Day Parade.

Homosexuality is romantic attraction, sexual attraction or sexual behavior between members of the same sex or gender. As a sexual orientation, homosexuality is "an enduring pattern of emotional, romantic, and/or sexual attractions" to people of the same sex. It "also refers to a person's sense of identity based on those attractions, related behaviors, and membership in a community of others who share those attractions."

Along with bisexuality and heterosexuality, homosexuality is one of the three main categories of sexual orientation within the heterosexual–homosexual continuum.

Scientists do not know what determines an individual's sexual orientation, but they theorize that it is caused by a complex interplay of genetic, hormonal, and environmental influences, and do not view it as a choice. They favor biologically-based theories, which point to genetic factors, the early uterine environment, both, or the inclusion of genetic and social factors.

Hypotheses for the impact of the post-natal social environment on sexual orientation, however, are weak, especially for males. There is no substantive evidence which suggests parenting or early childhood experiences play a role with regard to sexual orientation.While some people believe that homosexual activity is unnatural, scientific research has shown that homosexuality is a normal and natural variation in human sexuality and is not in and of itself a source of negative psychological effects. There is insufficient evidence to support the use of psychological interventions to change sexual orientation.

The most common terms for homosexual people are lesbian for females and gay for males, but gay also commonly refers to both homosexual females and males. The percentage of people who are gay or lesbian and the proportion of people who are in same-sex romantic relationships or have had same-sex sexual experiences are difficult for researchers to estimate reliably for a variety of reasons, including many gay and lesbian people not openly identifying as such due to prejudice or discrimination such as homophobia and heterosexism. Homosexual behavior has also been documented in many non-human animal species.

Many gay and lesbian people are in committed same-sex relationships, though only in the 2010s have census forms and political conditions facilitated their visibility and enumeration. These relationships are equivalent to heterosexual relationships in essential psychological respects.Homosexual relationships and acts have been admired, as well as condemned, throughout recorded history, depending on the form they took and the culture in which they occurred.

Since the end of the 19th century, there has been a global movement towards freedom and equality for gay people, including the introduction of anti-bullying legislation to protect gay children at school, legislation ensuring non-discrimination, equal ability to serve in the military, equal access to health care, equal ability to adopt and parent, and the establishment of marriage equality. Read more...

June 2016

June is Gay Pride Month -- Google News

US survey shows dramatic rise in acceptance of same-sex relationships   The Guardian - June 1, 2016
Acceptance of same-sex sexual activity has nearly quadrupled since 1990, while adults reporting at least one same-sex partner has also increased. According to a national survey of more than 30,000 Americans, those who view sexual activity between two adults of the same sex as being not wrong at all increased from 13% in 1990 to 49% in 2014. The shift was even greater for adults under the age of 30, with the proportion rising from 15% to 63% during the same time period.

Gay Pride 2015 in NYC

Supreme Court rules in favor of same-sex marriage nationwide

In June 2015, the Stonewall Inn received official landmark status from the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission for its role as the catalyst of the LGBT movement. It is the first landmark in New York City that has been recognized because of its status in LGBT history. Stonewall Riots --- Google Videos

Every year we explore the various sexual orientations people are programmed to experience. For some it's easy for others not so much mostly based on their up bringing and ignorance about people who are different than they are. Gay rights are expanding making it easier for those programmed to be homosexual or bisexual to be free and hopefully accepted.

This year, thanks to Caitlyn/Bruce Jenner, the issues of transgender came to the fore as we looked at the emotional and physical issues facing souls born in the wrong body. Physical reality is never easy as we move through our programmed experiences, spending much of the time healing.

Supreme Court rules in favor of same-sex marriage nationwide   CNN - June 26, 2015
In a landmark opinion, a divided Supreme Court on Friday ruled that same-sex couples can marry nationwide, establishing a new civil right and handing gay rights advocates a historic victory.

Gay in Country Music

Saturday November 22, 2014

I celebrated my 70th birthday on February 17, 2012, in Nashville where I met actor, singer, and musician Chris Carmack co-star of the hit TV series Nashville. Chris plays Will Lexington a rising country star struggling with the fact that he is gay, which would not sit well with the country and western community.

Thursday, the same night Nashviile airs, 52-year-old country and western singer Ty Herndon and singer Billy Gilman came out. Ty Herndon announced first. He had an immediate impact on double-platinum country artist Billy Gilman, who, hearing of Herndon's move, came out in a YouTube video on Thursday as well. At the end of the day ...most people have always figured out when someone is gay.

I wonder how this will affect Chris Carmack's character on Nashville. If fans turn against gay country singers, as they have with other performers who came out, then so be it. People will have to take a long hard look at their own prejudices. This is just one of an endless list of challenges in which we are gaining understanding and making inroads. There are people in the world who have never met anyone who is gay and do not understand the dynamic of the whole experience. It's all about duality - so there will be positives and negative.

There will be other country performers who will soon come out in the aftermath of this announcement. Give it time. Ty and Billy have definitely opened the door to the future of country music. Let's give them lots of credit and support. It's time and part of the program. Straight or gay, humans do the whackiest things in relationships then go on to write and sing about them. We are a crazy species filled with too much judgment, fear, and anger using every opportunity to vent. Let it all go.

Born this way? An Evolutionary View of 'Gay Genes'   Live Science - June 4, 2014

The claim that homosexual men share a 'gay gene' created a furore in the 1990s. But new research two decades on supports this claim - and adds another candidate gene. To an evolutionary geneticist, the idea that a person's genetic makeup affects their mating preference is unsurprising. We see it in the animal world all the time. There are probably many genes that affect human sexual orientation.

Coming Out May Lower Stress in Gays   Live Science - January 29, 2013

Coming out of the closet may protect against mental and physical stress in people who are gay, a new study finds. In the study, lesbian, gay and bisexual (LGB) individuals who had come "out" to family had friends had fewer symptoms of anxiety, depression, and emotional exhaustion (called burnout), than those who had not disclosed their sexual orientation. In addition, LGBs who had disclosed their sexual orientation had lower levels of cortisol - a stress hormone - in the morning, than individuals who were still in the closet.

Pride Weekend in NYC (June 25-26, 2011)

June 27-28, 1969

Stonewall Riots

The Stonewall Riots were a series of spontaneous, violent demonstrations against a police raid that took place in the early morning hours of June 28, 1969 at the Stonewall Inn, in the Greenwich Village neighborhood of New York City. They are frequently cited as the first instance in American history when gays and lesbians fought back against a government-sponsored system that persecuted homosexuals, and they have become the defining event that marked the start of the gay rights movement in the United States and around the world.

Census 2010: One-Quarter of Gay Couples Raising Children   ABC - June 23, 2011
An estimated one-quarter of all same-sex households are raising children, according to U.S. Census data, providing one of the first portraits of gay American families. For the first time ever, the census counts same-sex couples and their children, and as data trickles out state by state, more gay families are being tallied in the South.

Is Homosexuality Based on a Brain Chemical?   Live Science - March 26, 2011
Serotonin is known to regulate sexual behaviors, such as erection, ejaculation and orgasm, in both mice and men. The compound generally dampens sexual activity; for instance, antidepressants that increase the amount of serotonin in the brain sometimes decrease sex drive. Neuroscientist Yi Rao of Peking University and the National Institute of Biological Sciences in Beijing, and his collaborators have now shown that serotonin also underlies a male's decision to woo a female or another male. Rao and his team genetically engineered male mice to lack either serotonin-producing neurons or a protein that is crucial for making serotonin in the brain.

Both types of altered mouse couldn't make serotonin. Unlike typical males, mice deficient in the neurotransmitter showed no inclination to mount sexually receptive females more than males, nor did they prefer to smell females' genital odors or bedding. Instead, they climbed onto males and serenaded them with ultrasonic love songs more frequently than normal. Males emit these vocalizations when they encounter females to make them more receptive to mating.

Late-blooming lesbians: women can switch sexualities as they mature   Telegraph.co.uk - July 12, 2010
Women are embracing lesbianism in their thirties, according to research indicating that shifts in sexual orientation may be more widespread than previously thought. While "late-blooming lesbians" are not uncommon in history - the married writer Virginia Woolf had an affair with the poet Vita Sackville-West - the phenomenon of mature women switching sexualities is now attracting academic scrutiny. One study even indicates that as many as two-thirds of women who feel lesbian attractions may have changed their sexual orientation over time. The findings appear to pose a challenge to the scientific consensus that a person's sexuality is determined more by their genes than environment.

How Gay Uncles Pass Down Genes   Live Science - February 11, 2010
A new study found that homosexual men may be predisposed to nurture their nieces and nephews as a way of helping to ensure their own genes get passed down to the next generation. Research has confirmed that male homosexuality is at least partly hereditary - it tends to cluster in families, and identical twin brothers of gay men are more likely to be gay than fraternal twin brothers, who do not share identical DNA. But scientists have been puzzled about how these genes are perpetuated, since homosexual males are less likely to reproduce than straight males. Basically, why haven't gay people gone extinct?

Children Raised by Lesbians Do Just Fine, Studies Show   Live Science - February 8, 2010
The finding, which comes from a review of essentially all studies on the topic of same-sex parents and the health of their children, helps to tease out politics and science on this highly divisive issue. In general, kids in both heterosexual and lesbian households had similar levels of academic achievement, number of friends and overall well-being. Whether or not kids from homosexual households are more likely to have a non-heterosexual orientation is still unknown. But if there is a genetic component to sexual orientation, it would make sense that kids born to a lesbian mom, say, would be more likely than other kids to be homosexual, scientists say.