The Born Gay Hoax: The Studies Exposed

Ryan Sorba. The Born Gay Hoax. 2007. 

“I felt if I didn’t find anything, I would give up a scientific career altogether.” (Simon LeVay, Activist)
By 1986 sentiments were galvanized in favor of implementing the strategy outlined in The Gay Agenda to combat the legal precedent left in the wake of Bowers v Hardwick. As the public relations campaign began to unfold, media headlines led many to believe that same-sex attractions are innate and unchangeable. Pro-sodomy activists capitalized on multiple pseudo-scientific studies to mislead the public. The following analyses will expose these illegitimate studies and the men who conducted them, beginning with the three most cited.

The Hypothalamus Study

The hypothalamus study was conducted in 1991 by Dr. Simon LeVay who worked at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies in La Jolla, California. LeVay’s study analyzed size differences in neurons in the anterior hypothalamus of the brains of cadavers. LeVay publicized his study in an effort to convince the world that same-sex attractions are fixed, and caused by the size of the hypothalamus in the brain.

LeVay, it should be noted, had strong personal and political incentives to pursue research in this area. According to a Newsweek cover story in 1992, LeVay had developed same-sex attractions, engaged in sodomy, and lost his partner to AIDS. The article states that when his partner, ‘Richard Heresey, died of AIDS, LeVay went into deep depression. Hospitalized for two weeks, he began reevaluating his goals. ‘It makes you think of what your life is about,’ he says. Around that time, a UCLA lab announced its finding that a portion of the male hypothalamus was more than twice as large as woman’s. Suddenly, it seemed LeVay had a research area to pursue: was it also larger than that of gays?” LeVay told reporters: “I felt if I didn’t find anything, I would give up a scientific career altogether.”

LeVay also seemed to understand the impact that his study would have on society. In reference to this study he writes, “It’s important to educate society.

I think this issue does affect religious and legal attitudes.” The Advocate, a pro-sodomy movement magazine asked LeVay if he thought “that grounding homosexuality in biology could help win political equality?” LeVay responded: “All the civil rights legislation passed in the ’60s is based on the knowledge that there is a genetic and immutable difference between blacks and whites. Of course, blacks are still discriminated against, but the legal advances they’ve made are based on those genetic differences. And I think that is a major stumbling block for our gaining the same protection as other groups. There is a survey in the New York Times that broke down people on the basis of whether they thought gays and lesbians were born that way or whether it was a lifestyle choice. Across the board, those who thought gays and lesbians were born that way were more liberal and gay friendly.”

LeVay’s hypothalamus study received widespread media attention and as a result catapulted the idea that some men are born “gay” into prominence. Although the misinformed still quote the study today as proof that some men are born “gay,” it was actually discredited shortly after its release for several reasons.

First, LeVay compared the brains of nineteen men whose sexual habits he did not know, (he only knew that they had died of AIDS, which is known to ravage the brain) with the brains of thirteen men whose sexual habits he did not know. It is therefore impossible to draw any conclusion from his study. Second, although LeVay argued that a small INAH3 (hypothalamus) “caused” men to be “gay,” some of the men who, according to his guess work, had sex with men, had a hypothalamus that was larger than the average size of the hypothalamus of the men that, according to his guess work, had sex with women. Further, some of the men who, according to his guess work had sex with women had a hypothalamus that was smaller than the average size of the men who, according to his guess work had sex with men. So, some of his “gay” subjects should have been straight, and vice-versa. Third, Simon LeVay himself admitted in 2001 that the study was inconclusive, “It’s important to stress what I didn’t find. I did not prove that homosexuality is genetic, or find a genetic cause for being gay. I didn’t show that gay men are born that way, the most common mistake people make in interpreting my work. Nor did I locate a gay center in the brain.” Fourth, the results of the hypothalamus study are not repeatable. Simon LeVay’s hypothalamus study confused the public. Hopefully the truth will set the record straight.

The “Gay” Gene Study

The next and most influential study reported a “gay” gene and was conducted in 1993 by pro-sodomy activist Dr. Dean Hamer and his team of geneticists at the National Cancer Institute. Hamer and his colleagues reported that a “gay” gene seemed to be maternally linked and could be found on the Xq28 stretch of the X chromosome. Hamer, who has testified in opposition to Colorado’s Amendment 2, which sought to keep men who have sex with men from winning minority class status, has played an enormous role in the born “gay” hoax. Then Senator Robert C. Smith (R-New Hampshire) knew this and even accused the doctor of “actively pursu[ing] a gay agenda.”

Immediately after Hamer’s “gay gene” study was published a media explosion ensued. But, like LeVay’s hypothalamus study, Hamer’s results were a fraud. The title of an article appearing in the pro-sodomy movement magazine the New York Native explains:

“’Gay Gene’ Research Doesn’t Hold Under Scrutiny, Chicago Tribune’s John Crewdson Uncovers Possible Scientific Misconduct by NCI Researcher.”108 The article begins: “In addition to the political and social firestorm Hamer’s research has ignited, he has also been criticized by numerous scientists for not performing what seems to be an obvious control experiment: examining the genes of heterosexual brothers. Those scientists, including two prominent geneticist/biologists at Harvard University [Richard Lewontin and Ruth Hubbard], were not government researchers.”

This omission is significant. If Hamer was refusing to use a control group in his experiment, he must have refused for a reason. But, what could that reason have been? According to the article, another researcher who worked on the project had attacked Hamer’s integrity over this issue. The article continues:

“Even worse for Hamer, the National Institute of Health’s Office of Research Integrity is now investigating his ‘gay gene’ research, according to Crewdson. The inquiry concerns allegations that Hamer was selective about which data he chose to report (i.e., that he ignored data that didn’t support his contention that homosexuality is genetically determined). The data manipulation was reported to NIH’s integrity office by a junior researcher who performed research crucial to Hamer’s claimed discovery, according to Crewdson.”

Aside from the fact that it appears as though Hamer threw out cases which contradicted his pre-planned experimental outcome, if a study such as his is scientifically valid other researchers should get the same results with duplicate experiments. But this has not happened. The article continues:

“’It troubles some scientists that Hamer has not published his original data,’ according to Crewdson. Additionally, at least one lab that has tried hard to replicate his findings has been unsuccessful.” “Only one independent laboratory has reported attempting such a replication, and it has found no evidence to support Hamer,” Crewdson reported. “We can’t reproduce Hamer’s data,” said George Ebers, a neurogeneticist from the University of Western Ontario, who has searched unsuccessfully for a Hamer-style genetic link to homosexuality in more than 50 pairs of gay Canadian brothers. In fact, Ebers found the genetic markers cited by Hamer in “exactly half of his brother pairs” according to Crewdson—precisely what the laws of chance would predict, if the ‘markers’ had no significance.”

Only four months after the New York Native article was printed, the November 1995 edition of Scientific American reported that Hamer was “being charged with research improprieties and was under investigation by the National Institute of Health’s Federal Office of Research Integrity.” According to allegations by a junior researcher on his team, Hamer deliberately and deceitfully excluded pairs of brothers whose genetic makeup contradicted his pre-planned experimental outcome. NIH never released the results of the inquiry, but Hamer was shortly thereafter transferred to another section. He had done his “gay” gene research under a grant to work on Kaposi’s sarcoma, a skin cancer that inordinately afflicts men who have sex with men.

Then in April of 1999, George Rice and George Ebers, both neurogeneticists’ from the University of Western Ontario discredited Hamer’s results when they published their review of Hamer’s study in Science Magazine.

The scientists stated that the results of Hamer’s study “did not support an X- linked gene underlying male homosexuality.” They found that the brothers observed by the Hamer group were no more likely to share the Xq28 markers than would be expected by chance. These results officially sounded the death- knell for Hamer’s outrageously effective yet deliberately deceptive “gay” gene study. Another group of researchers (Sanders, et al.) eventually tried to replicate Hamer’s study yet again; they too failed to find a genetic connection to homosexuality.

Some once believed that a “gay” gene would be found hiding amidst other chromosomes analyzed in the Human Genome Project. However, according to the National Center for Bio-Technology Information, upon the completion of the Human Genome Project, we know that neither the map for the X nor the Y chromosomes contains a “gay” gene.

Hamer was eventually forced to admit that his study did not support a genetic cause for homosexuality and that female homosexuality was “culturally transmitted, not inherited” and that “There is not a single master gene that makes people gay.. .I don’t think we will ever be able to predict who will be gay,” he says. However, Hamer continued to publicly claim that male “homosexuality” was about 50 percent genetic, 50 percent environmental. Where did he get this 50 percent statistic from? Hamer’s claim that male “homosexuality” is about 50 percent genetic is based on the “gay” twin study, which has also been discredited.

The “Gay” Twins Study

The “gay” twins study was conducted by doctors Michael Bailey and Richard Pillard from Boston University in December of 1991. The Advocate reported the results:

“Bailey and Pillard “found that 52% of the identical twin brothers of gay men were gay, as were 22% of fraternal twin brothers, and 11% of genetically unrelated brothers.”

Once released, these results were spun into sales as magazine covers, newscasters, and radio broadcasters cited the results as proof that same-sex attractions are genetic. In scientific circles however, problems were beginning to surface.

First, in order to show that “homosexuality” is genetic using identical twins, one must demonstrate that when one twin is “gay” the other will also be “gay” 100% of the time. The results of this twins study however, fell a long way short of the mark. Further, genetics tells us that if one fraternal (non-identical) twin is “gay,” then other non-twin brothers should also be “gay” exactly as often as are the non-identical twin brothers, since non-identical twins and regular brothers are equally genetically different. In this study, 22 percent of fraternal (non-identical) twins both claimed to be “gay.” Therefore, their non-twin brothers should also have claimed to have been “gay” 22 percent of the time. If the non-twin percentage was lower, some environmental cause must have been at fault, not a hidden “gay” gene. But this was not the case. Yet readers could not have known that this was not the case because Bailey and Pillard left the numbers for the genetically related non-twin brothers out of their original report. Why? If this data had supported their agenda, would they not have included it as well?

According to The Advocate the researcher’s withheld important information about the non-twin brothers in their study. The Advocate reports:

“According to Bailey, a heterosexual, the released data did not include another group in the study: 142 genetically related non-twin brothers of gay men, of whom only 13—or about 9 percent were also gay.”

Ironically, this study shows that unrelated step-brothers are both “gay” more often than genetically related brothers. Obviously, if this data had been released with the original results, it would have been immediately clear that Bailey and Pillard did not prove the existence of a “gay” gene. The percentage of homosexuality in non-twin brothers is so low (9 percent) that had the study been properly conducted and reported, it would actually have demonstrated that same-sex attraction and sodomitic behaviors are not caused by a “gay” gene. This study, had it been properly reported, actually demonstrates that environment is a cause for same-sex attraction, not genes.

As if this were not enough, the pro-sodomy magazine The Advocate reported another error. The twins study did not have a proper sample: “Bailey and Pillard’s study has come under attack in scientific circles…Gay scholars have called their sample, culled through advertisements in gay and lesbian newspapers, unrepresentative and their data inconclusive.”

Not only did these “scientists” use unrepresentative samples, they also used a curious, self-serving definition of “gay.” Bailey admits that he and “Pillard ‘lumped the bisexuals in with the gay men.’“ This is critical. If the men that Bailey and Pillard were using to show that same-sex attractions are genetic and unchangeable were actually still attracted to opposite sex, then this not only destroys their results, but it destroys their credibility as scientists as well.


In conclusion, all studies which have claimed to have found an immutable cause for same-sex attractions and sodomy have crumbled under the scrutiny of peer review. Same-sex attractions are not genetic—there is no scientific evidence which shows that they are, none, not a single person has been found with any innate “gay” gene, organ, hormone, chemical, or combination thereof.

In the light of truth one can see why activists failed to overturn Bowers v Hardwick by way of minority status. They failed to scientifically demonstrate that person’s who develop same-sex attraction are born that way. This is because the concept was completely fabricated.

While the “born gay” hoax failed in one sense it prevailed in another. Individual emotions and opinions are not as solid, girded for work, or hard- pressed to correspond with reality as science. As years went by the public was never told the truth behind the headlines, and America fell under the spell of the propaganda of The Gay Agenda.

Because the studies have largely gone publicly unchallenged a generation has grown amidst the lies, which appear in college textbooks across the nation. These pseudo-scientific studies have both directly and indirectly convinced millions; including one judge in Texas that persons struggling with same-sex attractions must be “born gay,” and that for this reason sodomy ought to be decriminalized.

In 2003, Bowers v. Hardwick was overturned by one activist judge in Lawrence v. Texas. Under the full faith and credit clause of the 14th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, Lawrence v. Texas took the power to criminalize sodomy away from every state in the union. Now, sodomy is legal in every state. “Born gay” propagandists know they will never prove scientifically that anyone is “born gay,” so they have largely abandoned their direct quest for traditional minority status.

Thus, ironically, after the legalization of sodomy activists slammed the brakes on the “born gay” hoax -The “Gay” Agenda. Today the once unimpeachable propaganda has been set aside by its own inventors. Elite activists are now turning their attention toward a new goal: recruitment and retention. As a result, a far more brutal lie lurks just over the horizon of mainstream American consciousness: “Queer Theory.”

“Queer Theory” holds that there is no such thing as gender or a fixed sexual affiliation. The contemporary “Queer” holds that his or her identity is a fluid social construct. In other words, the “Queer” identity is actually the negation of an intrinsic identity altogether. In order to understand that recruitment is possible by way of “Queer Theory,” and through general recruitment and desensitization via the mass media and porn industries, we must identify some of the contemporary and classic causes of both same-sex attraction and sodomy. We must also become aware of how the late modern “gay” identity and its opposite, the post-modern “queer” anti-identity, actually develop. Further, we must acknowledge that reversals are possible and the ways in which political activists use public ignorance about the fluidity and potential irrationality of sexuality to their advantage, as they work a generation ahead, in their efforts to recruit unsuspecting youth.