For example, since identical twins share the same chromosomal pattern, or DNA, the genetic contributions are exactly the same within each of the pairs. Therefore, if one twin is "born" homosexual, then the other should inevitably have that characteristic too.
This is not correct. Recent research in animal cloning has shown that genes must be *expressed*. Look at identical human twins as adults, and you will see that the vast majority are not truly identical. For instance, they are often of different heights, so their identical genes met with different circumstances in their upbringing and were therefore expressed differently. If you look at the cats that were cloned at A&M, you will see that their markings are quite different. Again, this is a matter of the same gene being expressed in different ways. If there is a genetic component to being gay, it is not beyond reasonable possibility that the same "gay" gene is being expressed in different ways in identical twins. (Also, it is possible that having an occasional homosexual in the population is actually beneficial to society as a whole, in some way that we do not yet understand -- something like the appendix, which has yet to be fully understood.)
Furthermore, if homosexuality were specifically inherited, it would tend to be eliminated from the human gene pool because those who have it tend not to reproduce. Any characteristic that is not passed along to the next generation eventually dies with the individual who carries it.
Again, I believe this statement is in error. Recessive genes can be passed along in the population for quite some time (though I don't know if they can be passed along forever). Also, if the same gene caused both male homosexuality and lesbianism, it could easily be passed along the female line, since frankly, women do not need to feel desire in order to become pregnant, and for most of human history, women have felt a great deal of societal pressure to get married (in order to keep a roof over their head, if nothing else).
I am not convinced that homosexuality is genetic, and I'd like to see more (nonjudgmental) research into Dobson's idea that it is caused by other factors. But I believe his statements about heredity are in error. I will, of course, bow to someone who has more knowledge in this than I do.
I did research on endocrinology while in college and one of the topics I wrote papers on was the issue of homosexuality and hormones. There appears to be no real evidence that hormones influence behavior in regards to sexuality except to magnify it. Women who take steroids do not start getting lesbian attraction nor do men who undergo surgury for testicular cancer or prostate cancer (and have to be castrated) start eyes men. Many men with high testosterone levels are homosexual but many men with low testosterone levels are also homosexual -- no connections can be found.
Also, in regards to lesbianism and bi-sexuality I ran across studies on women who became strippers or became members of swinging clubs (in the later category the women were all over 30 and had never even fantisized about homosexuality). It is very common for women who become strippers to start having same-sex affairs (some pairing with females for significant time periods and essentually becomming lesbian in sexual matters as well as life patterns) and as for swingers within around 6 months the subjects tend to at least identify as bi-sexual with a substantial number gravitating to preferring female relations (although none in the study left their husbands and became lesbian one must assume it does happen).
The point in the later examples is that when a woman gets involved in these "alternative or fringe" lifestyles I would rather doubt her hormones or genitic makeup changes.
I too have known a fair number of gay and bisexual people over the years. I would also say that at least in gay bars there are 3 times as many bisexuals as there are purely homosexuals.
When training with a noted psychiatrist in New York, he was asked about his views on homosexuality. First of all I should mention that his methodology involved working in groups of people with people pairing up and holding one another while releasing very intense emotions of pain, fear and anger. First of all he said he was restricting his observations to homosexuals who had come into therapy because they were unhappy with their lives, their sexual orientation or both. He did not claim to speak for gays who were not unhappy with their lives.
He said that most cases involved a situation in which there were intense feelings of pain, fear or anger regarding the opposite sex parent; or feelings of deprivations and longing for the same sex parent. He believed that warmth, love and affection from both parents was essential to normal development including sexuality. He also felt that cases were able to shift their sexuality more or less easily depending on whether the primary trauma was deprivation vs. pain/fear/anger.
I had a man join my group who was upset because he had acted out a few times in mens bathrooms. He was in his 40's, divorced, and had recently met a woman he felt he could be seriously interested in. He was the youngest of 5 children, the rest of whom were girls. I asked him what kind of attention he had from his father. He said his father was so busy and tired, that he got very little attention or affection. I had him work with my husband or another older man in the group. They would hold him as he closed his eyes and said things like "Daddy, love me," "Daddy, pay attention to me," "Daddy, see me too." When saying these things he would often burst into tears and cry for a long time while being held. About 8 sessions later he came to me and said he would no longer be coming to the group. I asked why, and he said he felt he understood his acting out, and was going to move in with the woman. Two years later I ran into him and they were still happily together.
Although faith in God and love of Jesus can help many people, there are others for whom that approach does not work. It is just as possible to help people work on their sexual issues without involving religion. Those who are not comfortable with religion should not be forced to become religious to get the help they need.
Regarding early childhood development, it is also very important that mothers be comfortable with their children's sexuality. If a child senses that their opposite sex parent is bothered about sex, this can influence their feelings negatively. As Dobson's article pointed out, many fathers suffer from certain inadequacies that can impact their sons negatively. If the child is showing gender identity issues, it may be important for the parents to seek guidance and therapy before the child can be helped.
Regarding genetic predispositon, I concur that it is probably unlikely. However, one thing that can happen is that stress on the mother can cause changes in her hormones that can have an influence on the unborn child. In centuries past, the comfortable classes sometimes went out of their way to protect pregnant women (confinement). We would do well the give our pregnant women more support and reduce their stress levels. We might find they give birth to fewer feminized boys, and masculinized girls as a result.
I don't want to claim to have more knowledge than you do. But to the extent that Dr. Dobson is trying to suggest that there is no possibility of genetic influence, I think that is mistaken. He is assuming that gays do not reproduce at all. But gay men do father children; the figure I have seen is that they have 20% as many children as heterosexuals. That's a lot fewer but far from zero.
That said, I think there is too much focus on genes rather than other biological factors. If this were my field of research I would looking at whether something that the fetus is exposed to in the womb might be influencing the developing brain in a way that influences masculinity/femininity and ultimately sexual preference.