Wow - quite a lively discussion on a topic with a doubtful resolution.

I think it is worth considering that the words we read here are stripped of inflection and prosity - simply the way something is said or the stress on a particular word or syllable is enough to change the meaning (for example - the discussion earlier in the thread on the perception of attacking vs. responding). That said, I reread your posts, Ed, without passion and think I know where you are coming from. I don't see it as anti-gay, or even a straight-is-better-than-gay thing, but do correct me if I am wrong on that. I think you are saying that our fundamental orientation is sometimes different than the one we ourselves believe (eg. SSA issues). I would also guess that knife cuts both ways - someone who perceives themselves to be straight may actually be gay, and it would be equally appropriate to explore and embrace that if in fact that were the true orientation.

I would agree that sexual orientation is a multi-faceted beast. The experts can't even agree on the social and biologic ingredients that comprise the formula of gay or straight or bisexual. So I have little faith we will arrive at anything here beyond just creating heat from the friction of our arguments. Ultimately I think we all fill in the missing pieces with our true-to-gut experiences of what we know to be true for us - and that truth can be very different for everyone here. It can be dangerous to make blanket statements from those deeper truths, for they may not be true for others.

It's too bad there are so many hang-ups about sexuality. Where there are hangups, there is hypocrisy and subterfuge and even abuse. I know far too many men who are gay yet pretend to lead a straight life, and some who are so deeply in denial that they don't even know themselves what their true orientation is. Some are in such denial that they lash out against others who are not, and I have found some of the most vicious anti-gay rhetoric comes from those who are so desperate to define themselves as straight that their remonstration is an essential component to the scaffold of the orientation they prefer others to perceive them as.