unanswered / unanswerable (alt title: agenda)

1) if sexual orientation is an inborn trait, what is it based on? innate sexual orientation can’t be based on a social construct — gender is a social construct — and can only be based on physical, material traits. this excludes genitalia, secondary sex characteristics, body hair distribution, scent, voice, etc, so what determines our attraction to others in terms of their gender? what element of any given gender is attractive to hetero- and homosexual people?

2a) if they are not inborn traits, what are the bases of hetero- and homosexuality? are they learned behaviours, conscious or subconscious decisions, or something else?

2b) is the exclusive attraction to one gender bigoted in the case of gay men being unattracted to straight women, who they oppress on the axis of gender? if so, why? if not, why not?

2c) if sexual orientation is immutable despite not being inborn or innate, at what point is it formed, and based on what? at which point is it immutable? at which age?

2d) if sexual orientation is not immutable, how can it be changed? under which circumstances? by which processes?

3a) if sexual orientation is not an inborn trait, why are approximately 5-10% of people of either sex repulsed by the opposite genitalia without necessarily having experienced trauma? what determines this? is “penis repulsion” (or “vulva repulsion”, i suppose) an inborn trait?

3b) if “genital preferences” are not inborn, how are they formed, and based on what? at which point are they immutable?

3c) if genital preferences are not immutable, how can they be changed? what process should someone go through if they are seeking to overcome their genital preference? what resources are available?

4a) sex-based attraction is considered to be problematic because we can’t always know someone’s sex just by looking at them. isn’t it also true that we can’t know someone’s gender just by looking at them?

4b) if a hypothetical gay man experiences attraction to a woman-identified person, does he lose attraction to her upon learning of her gender identity, or is he in fact bisexual?

4c) if he loses the attraction, why does the same principle not apply to sex-based attraction?

4d) if he is in fact bisexual, are we not all bisexual? how can we claim to be only attracted to women or men if we don’t know the gender identity of everyone we’ve been attracted to?

5) if sexual orientation is based on gender, what is the definition of ‘gender’?

6) are people who are only attracted to others of the same sex morally obligated to feel ashamed of this?

7a) if penises are female genitals, why do trans women experience physical dysphoria?

7b) why is sex reassignment surgery called ‘gender affirmation surgery’?

7c) why do we encourage surgery rather than encouraging trans people to make peace with their bodies and overcome the cissexism they’ve internalized that tells them that their genitals don’t match their gender?

8a) in a world without gender (ie. if everybody identified as agender), would gay people cease to exist? would gay culture cease to exist? if not, why not?

8b) if so, would this be a favourable outcome?

9a) are all women born without genital preferences? is an interest in penises a part of tabula rasa female existence?

9b) if we examine the root of our repulsion towards penises and, indeed, all male sex characteristics, is the correct answer that deep down, we were attracted to them all along? is that the conclusion we are supposed to come to?

9c) if not, what is?

10a) if the only way to eradicate genital preference in a woman was through exploration of gender theory and re-framing of her perceptions of what it means to be a man or woman, would this be an appropriate response?

10b) if the only way to eradicate genital preference in a woman was through damaging her opportunities to access employment, housing, and social support networks as a response to non-compliance, would this be an appropriate response?

10c) if the only way to eradicate genital preference in a woman was through re-education at a dedicated facility, would this be an appropriate response?

10d) if the only way to eradicate genital preference in a woman was through aversion therapy — inducing, for example, intense self-loathing and worthlessness in response to undesirable feelings– would this be an appropriate response?

10e) if the only way to eradicate genital preference in a woman was through electroshock therapy, would this be an appropriate response?

10f) if the only way to eradicate genital preference in a woman was through internment followed by six months of brothel work followed by murder, would this be an appropriate response?

10g) if not, why not?

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