There is More to Human Sexuality than XX and XY

The original parental gene pool need not have been “identical”. The same two parents can give rise to a vast array of phenotypically different offspring based on the front-loaded genetic potential within themselves and the process of Mendelian variation alone…

Relying on random genetic mutations will only get you in trouble since the vast majority of these are detrimental and are driving the human gene pool downhill in a very rapid manner.

Ha ha, Tim. I also suggest Adam and the Genome, which says the same. I am merely reasoning from the common assumption that most Christians do, that all mankind came from a single couple, which if true, would require mutation to have produced the diversity we see today. Of course, mutation would be required to produce the variation we see today if we started with 15,000 ancestors too.

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Who says that handedness is based on genetic mutations? - outside of the original front-loaded information of our original two parents?

“It was initially thought that a single gene controlled handedness. However, more recent studies suggest that multiple genes, perhaps up to 40, contribute to this trait. Each of these genes likely has a weak effect by itself, but together they play a significant role in establishing hand preference. Studies suggest that at least some of these genes help determine the overall right-left asymmetry of the body starting in the earliest stages of development.”

Again, such diversity can be easily achieved via Mendelian variation alone of front-loaded information without the need to resort to genetic mutations which are almost always functionally detrimental to the human gene pool of options.

Only if you’re talking about functionally detrimental allelic variations. Otherwise, it is very easy to achieve vast phenotypic variation starting with just two parents and Mendelian variation alone…

Again, where is the evidence to back up your assumption that genetic mutations have been significantly beneficial to the human gene pool of options? Just the opposite is actually true. The average child has around 100 mutations that the parents did not have. Of these, around 20 likely have some functional effect (the others being functionally neutral). And, of these 20 functionally relevant mutations, the odd are that all will be detrimental compared to the parental gene pool. In fact, the odds are so bad that this detrimental mutation rate is inevitably driving the entire human gene pool rapidly downhill… not uphill as you’re suggesting here.

I never said or even implied that they were allelically identical. As any geneticist could explain, the genetic diversity contained within just two individuals is insufficient to produce the kind of diversity we see today, unless you also have mutations to continually produce new diversity? How allelically different do you think they were, anyway? There many loci that have dozens of different alleles and more across the human population. A single diploid pair of individuals can possess a maximum of four alleles per locus. Where have all those other alleles come from if not via mutation?

For your contention to be correct, either Adam or Eve would have had to have had sickle-cell trait, thus enabling their African descendents to have resistance to malaria. Oh, oops, that’s a detrimental mutation (unless, of course, you live in Africa where malaria runs rampant). This is the kind of quandary that happens repeatedly with your kind of reasoning about genetics.

No one is making hell for an alcoholic by wanting to help him get treatment for the addiction. There is a moral argument against encouraging someone to go ahead and live as an alcoholic. There is moral harm, since we know that being an alcoholic leads to many negative health outcomes. The same cannot be said for same-sex marriage, there is no moral harm you can identify, and since there is no moral harm, why prohibit it, except because it makes you uncomfortable, or it doesn’t reach some ideal you have determined to be important?

Even were this to be true, how does that address same-sex marriage. No one is implying that same-sex marriage is the same as heterosexual marriage. Just because something does not meet some specified ideal, does not mean that alternative approaches or variation should not be allowed. If there is nothing morally wrong with same-sex marriage, why not allow it, especially if it can help gays live more fulfilled and sexually responsible lives? If you are uncomfortable with it, don’t get married to a man yourself, but why prohibit others. Heterosexua marriages loses nothing by also allowing same-sex marriage.

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Let me redirect the conversation to the religious contention that “Anything other than what God has determined is in error.” My question still stands, what is God’s will in regards to laterality. Right handedness or left handedness and does the wrong answer mean going against God’s will?

But if you insist, can you direct me to a clinical case where a homosexual was successfully treated through the power of having a divine relationship with God?

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I didn’t try to make that argument either. You are twisting my points. I simply said that mutation leads to human variation. That much of that variation “could” be characterized as detrimental is irrelevant to my point. You simply cannot produce the amount of variation, period (good or bad), that we see in the human population today without mutation. I would even challenge you to share with me one peer-reviewed genetics paper that even suggests such would be possible for any group of animals starting with two ancestors. Starting with a single pair of ancestors limits the system to only so much variation It runs counter to all we know about genetics. Whether humans are doomed due to mutations over time is a whole other topic and one I am not interested in discussing here, as it it is irrelevant to my point.

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But Bryan said identical genes…

We know that gene allele arise from mutations, in many cases we know what the mutation is. Read up on blue eyes for example or eye color in general.

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It’s true that in theory it is possible for a species to attain the genetic diversity we see in humans - even if there was what is known as a bottleneck event where the species is almost wiped out. But, in order to attain the diversity found in humans, it would take millions of generations to accomplish, which conflicts the current timeline for the appearance of modern humans, as there is not enough time for that to have happened.

Geneticists can tell based on specific aspects of the human genome that there were never less than 10,000 - 20,000 members in the human population. They can do this for any mammal (and they have).

One such species is the Tasmanian devil, which has a profound lack of genetic variability. They are so much the same that almost any individual could accept blood or even transplanted organs from almost any other. Unfortunately, as a result they are under threat from a cancer that spreads through saliva whey they fight and bite each other. The cancer started in one individual, and its mutated cancerous cells are not rejected by other individuals through what would be a normal immune response in most other mammals.

In any case, the science is established. For an fascinating review, I recommend this book:

https://www.amazon.com/Adam-Genome-Reading-Scripture-Genetic/dp/158743394X/

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Can you provide a description of gene allele that doesn’t involve the word mutation (or its functional equivalent)? The only reason one can talk about Mendelian genetics is because of mutations…

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Ron, Let’s set aside the conversation about gay and bisexual men, as that is only part of LGBTQI+. I will agree that scripture can be viewed to address the above, but committed scholars most certainly have a variety of views on the topic which can be supported, and which vary with your heart felt view/opinion.

So, let’s return to the actual topic of the article which covers a much broader subject area, which in your response you didn’t even acknowledge the existence of. How do you propose to relate to the whole of the LGBTQI+ population, which includes Intersex individual, individuals with a DSD (Disorder of Sexual Development), which cover a wide array of conditions. How about a person who is born with Androgen insensitivity syndrome, and many other genetics make ups besides XX and XY. What about transgender and gender-nonconforming people, and yes lesbians. I fear you paint with a broad brush of exclusion, even judgement, Christ in Matt 19:12, and the story of Philip and the eunuch seem fully fitting and inclusive for those I mention here.

I am willing to be judged for being inclusive, loving, accepting and understanding…

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Thanks, Steve. I am not sure where you are coming from. The Bible tells us that even the Pharysees practiced love, or what appeared as love. They actually twisted God’s commands to suit their ideas of love, like disobeying God’s commands to parents in order to give gifts to the sanctuary which went to themselves. Jesus and the Bible talk alot about love, but also about disobedience and its consequences. To destroy the old word of ca. 2 billion people is no small thing. But guess why they were destroyed? To obey is better than the fat of rams and to disobey is as witchcraft the Good book tells us. So check up on love and obedience, my friend. Blessings.

No, you can’t, since variation has been clearly linked to mutation. Numerous studies with bacteria show just this connection. Bacteria have just one copy of each gene, meaning that at each locus there is just a single allele. You can start a colony of bacteria from a single bacterium, and all the offspring will be identical, each locus has just one allele in the entire population, there is no variation among the individuals in the population. Even if these bacteria trade DNA with one another by conjugation, they will still all remain identical, since they all have the same alleles. Alternate alleles in such a population can only arise via mutation, and they do, regularly. And this has been demonstrated repeatedly, although most such mutations are detrimental, some are not, and over time such a population of bacteria will develop genetic variation. In fact, over time, new phenotypes can arise, in some cases completely new phenotypes that only arise because of the process of mutation. What I am sharing here is trivial, and something that every biology student learns in their introductory biology class.

Granted, diploid organisms like ourselves are much more complex and we engage in sexual reproduction, which repackages the variation we already possess in various ways, resulting in a diversity of offspring. We didn’t get to the place we are now with such great genetic diversity by simply rearranging what was there from the start, otherwise how could we end up with loci that have dozens of variant alleles. If you start with two humans and go from there, you only have four alleles maximum per locus with which to work. How could humanity of started with just four alleles and ended up with dozens without mutations. If you understand genetics, it is simple common sense.

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Yeah, but the point remains, that ALL alleles are mutations. You don’t start with four alleles just because you have diploid species. If you actually have four different alleles of one gene, you can pretty easily see how they are mutations of some original gene. They have descended from a common gene ancestor.

You say,

In order to attain the diversity found in humans, it would take millions of generations to accomplish…

Millions of generations? Really? What calculation is this assumption based on? Hmmmm?

Consider that mutation rates based on pedigrees show that the current mutational variation within the human gene pool can be explained by no more than 300 generations (or around 6,000 years). This mutation rate is about 20 times higher than the mutation rates based on the assumed evolutionary ancestry between humans and chimps. And, this has been shown to be true for both mDNA and chromosomal DNA.

In short, starting with evolutionary assumptions doesn’t match the actual pedigree data that is available to us…

https://digitalcommons.cedarville.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?referer=https://www.google.com/&httpsredir=1&article=1082&context=icc_proceedings

Bryan,

You wrote:

There many loci that have dozens of different alleles and more across the human population. A single diploid pair of individuals can possess a maximum of four alleles per locus. Where have all those other alleles come from if not via mutation?

Many novel alleles have come from mutations. However, the functionally novel human alleles that have been produced by random genetic mutations (outside of Mendelian or epigenetic variation) have not produced functional advantages over the original gene pool of options. Rather, such mutations have resulted in an overall functional detriment to the human gene pool.

This is known as downhill evolution, not the other way around.

For your contention to be correct, either Adam or Eve would have had to have had sickle-cell trait, thus enabling their African descendents to have resistance to malaria. Oh, oops, that’s a detrimental mutation (unless, of course, you live in Africa where malaria runs rampant). This is the kind of quandary that happens repeatedly with your kind of reasoning about genetics.

Sickle-cell is a classic example of a mutation that disrupts the original function of a system (hemoglobin in this case) which results in a survival benefit in certain environments. However, this type of survival benefit is like cutting off your arms to avoid a monster that only eats people with arms. In this particular case, the malaria parasite is less able to survive in an oxygen-poor environment. This, produces a survival advantage for those humans with defective hemoglobin funationality - a survival adventage that is produced via a loss of pre-existing functionality is no way to fight genome degeneration over time. Again, such mutations that are based on a loss of original functinality are very easy to achieve in short order, but will eventually add up to result in genomic meltdown and eventual extinction of a species. They simply aren’t helpful over the long haul because there are only so many pre-existing functions you can lose before you have nothing more to lose (i.e., you’re dead).

Again, what do you do with the fact that the known detrimental mutation rate is so high that the human gene pool is degenerating rapidly over time? How does this reality square with your arguments here?

The same cannot be said for same-sex marriage, there is no moral harm you can identify, and since there is no moral harm, why prohibit it, except because it makes you uncomfortable, or it doesn’t reach some ideal you have determined to be important?

I don’t think same-sex marriage should be legally prohibited. That being said, I don’t think one can honesly argue that the Bible supports such a marriage as being the ideal for humanity. Rather, the Bible clearly supports only a marriage between one man and one woman as being the ideal situation before God. I’m not the one making such claims here. It’s the Bible making such claims…

Even were this to be true, how does that address same-sex marriage. No one is implying that same-sex marriage is the same as heterosexual marriage. Just because something does not meet some specified ideal, does not mean that alternative approaches or variation should not be allowed. If there is nothing morally wrong with same-sex marriage, why not allow it, especially if it can help gays live more fulfilled and sexually responsible lives? If you are uncomfortable with it, don’t get married to a man yourself, but why prohibit others. Heterosexua marriages loses nothing by also allowing same-sex marriage.

From the Biblical perspective, an effort to do something that God doesn’t not consider ideal for you or me to do is defined as “sin” - a form of rebellion against what God has in mind for you and for me. So, we should always point people toward God’s ideals for humanity.

Again, that being said, no civil law should be enacted to enforce such “Christian Ideals” onto society at large. Everyone should be free to choose to align themselves with such ideals, or not, at will.

However, within the church, we should not promote, or hire anyone who actively subverts, any known biblical ideals for the Christian life.

Depends on how you define the framework. Strictly speaking there is nothing wrong with your argument, if you assume a completely evolutionarily based system where God was not involved in creation in any way. If we assume God created the first humans, as Sean and many Christians argue, the original alleles in those originally created individuals would be considered to be the ancestral alleles, and thus if God gave Adam two alternative alleles at the same locus as he gave Eve two different alternative alleles at the same locus, all four of those alleles would be ancestral, and therefore not mutations of one another.

This does, however, introduce an interesting philosophical conundrum. If God created the first two humans as perfect beings, then clearly when one considers the concept of perfection, some alleles are inherently more perfect than others, and one allele would presumably be the best and most perfect, then Adam and Eve must have been homozygous for all the same alleles across their entire genome, all 22,500+ genes. Then, if humankind originated from such a couple, where would any variation come from? Obviously mutations would have supply that variation, which would be saying that all variation is bad, because it is represents alternatives to perfection. This is the fully corrupted, fallen world view of so many. I find such a dim view problematic, as even after the fall God seems to remind us that nature is still his creation and it is good, even though there are obviously some faults.

If we take this philosophical thread a little further, and consider what would happen if there had never been a fall, and Adam and Eve populated the unfallen earth, what would their offspring be like? I presume they would have to be exact genetic clones of their parents, anything else would be less than perfect. What a boring world that would be. Thus the reason that I have to assume that God built the mechanism of mutation into genetics. Without mutation the living world would be perfect, I suppose, but it would be extremely boring. This is why I think we need to be careful and not get too hung up on perfection, or we might end up labeling variation as bad. Besides, in Genesis it never says God’s creation was perfect, it says it was good. Some genetic variation is clearly bad, but some of it is good, and it is especially good at producing variation in populations.

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If there is no big kerfuffle, and you are not asking about monogamy with a new gay member, then in essence any behavior is allowed. Right?

I noted in my reading that open discussion of what is expected in a gay relationship was encouraged. That is, the partners need to be up front about what is expected, especially regarding extra-“marital” sex. So, if the local church does not make it an issue, with a certain unspoken expectation, then there will be many different opinions.

This may be so, but I know of no good studies that show the difference. You and Tim have both asserted that young SDA heterosexuals are having pre-marital sex, at, I believe, you have said at the same rate as the secular population. So, why am I to assume that gay SDA’s are going to be any different?

Come on. This is an open discussion. I wish the folk here would be more respectful of Wilson. But any request I should make along those lines would be mocked.

I present the data as I see it. Certainly you are fine with criticizing any other group. Why should gays get a special pass?

Set them straight? The discussion has been between you and me, and really not them. You ae their advocate. OK. I disagree with your assessment.

For instance, the two studies you quote in your post do not really do what “my beloved” McWhorter did. They were not so long term. One discusses (quoted twice by you) compared two cohorts several years apart, but did not do a long there look like McWhirter did, that is follows the same folks for several yrs. etc. So they are not the same.

That being said, my statement that there is “no such animal” was hyperbole, but probably close to the truth. And, why was McWhirter quoted twice in my limited look at the literate in. 2020, and your two studies not quoted at all? Seems he is felt to be authoritative. I myself was surprised to see him still considered appropriate. But he was there.

Well, not quite a lie. Close to the truth even with the studies Ness has quoted.

I have never suggested that this is not the case. It’s obvious that the original plan is for men and women to marry and procreate. Just because that is the ideal does not mean it is the only way things can be oe should be done. Same-sex marriage does not detract from that ideal at all. It’s just that because they have same-sex attraction they do not have the option of that ideal arrangement, but allowing them same-sex marriage gives them as close to that ideal as is possible. Same-sex marriage meets all the goals of heterosexual marriage except for procreation, and not even all heterosexual couples reach that ideal.

I am not acquainted with that definition of sin. I suppose it is a useful philosophical definition of sin, but it isn’t very practical, since in almost every sphere of life there are ideal ways to do things, but such ideals are often not possible. By that kind of definition we are all sinners, gays no less or more than straight people, so what’s the point. Why make a big deal about one particular ideal, i.e. heterosexual marriage, and say that anyone who does otherwise is a sinner and therefor disallow it, when the very “less than ideal” state, i.e. same-sex marriage is not morally wrong. You can certainly argue that same-sex marriage does not match the ideal, but that does not Make it automatically wrong. It must be shown to be morally wrong, which you have not done.

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That would be evident if they looked unique. The problem is they don’t, do they? Don’t all (or almost all) alleles of a given locus look like they are mutations of a common ancestor? That is they differ in the common ways that we know mutations work?

Are there any examples of alleles of a given locus that are radically different in a way that is not easily explained by common mutation mechanisms?