The “Trojan Couch”

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“Investigation of prevalence, continuities, and changes over time among young adults growing up in a country with a relatively accepting climate to homosexuality is likely to illuminate this debate.”31 “10.7% of men and 24.5% of women reported being attracted to their own sex at some time.” “This dropped to 5.6% of men and 16.4% of women… report[ing] some current samesex attraction.” “Current attraction predominantly to their own sex or equally to both sexes was reported by 1.6% of men and 2.1% of women.” “Occasional same-sex attraction, but not major attraction, was more common among the most educated.” “Between age 21 and 26, slightly more men moved away from an exclusive heterosexual attraction (1.9% of all men) than moved towards it (1.0%)” “[F]or women, many more moved away (9.5%) than towards (1.3%) exclusive heterosexual attraction.” “These findings show that much same-sex attraction is not exclusive and is unstable in early adulthood, especially among women.” “The proportion of women reporting some same -sex attraction in New Zealand is high compared both to men, and to women in the UK and US.” “These observations, along with the variation with education, are consistent with a large role for the social environment” This study specifically contradicts amici’s claim that change might affect behavior but not attraction. To the contrary, large, dramatic drops in homosexual attraction occur spontaneously for both sexes. Furthermore, not only does this study demonstrate the extraordinary influence of the social and cultural milieu in general, it demonstrates specific effects (e.g., higher education) whose desirability needs to be considered dispassionately and not automatically presumed positive, especially as it is being misattributed to biology. That is, the typical college education in New Zealand almost certainly includes many falsehoods such as, “Homosexuality should be accepted because it is probably innate, which helps explain why it is stable.” The above study suggests that such statements —typical of what college students are being erroneously taught here, too, as authors of the briefs are t hemselves college professors—could plausibly slow the spontaneous decline in homosexual identification in a college-age population, especially among women, thereby increasing its cross -sectional prevalence.32 Furthermore, the study provides actual evidence for a specific causal mechanism (a social environmental influence) that contributes to its prevalence, whereas no evidence for any biological mechanism exists. Indeed all the present biological evidence points only toward

Footnotes: 31 The authors specifically identify New Zeala nd as a country whose more welcoming attitude toward homosexuality (over against the United States where the Laumann study was conducted and whose findings they are addressing) ought to leads an attenuation (or perhaps elimination) of the effect Laumann at al. found. 32 In fact, studies done many years ago demonstrated that merely showing people a phonied -up paragraph purporting to offer a biological explanation instantly altered their attitudes. K. E. Ernulf, S. M. Innala, and F. L. Whitam, “Biological Expl anation, Psychological Explanation, and Tolerance of Homosexuals: A Cross- National Analysis of Beliefs and Attitudes,” Psychological Reports 65 (1989), pp. 1003–10 (1 of 3).