Why Does Homosexuality Exist in the Animal Kingdom?
Posted on Jun 21, 2006
If homosexuality is a genetic aberration, why hasn’t it been bred out of all species? That’s the provocative question posed in Seed magazine, which reports that among some species, it actually makes more evolutionary sense for animals to copulate with members of the same sex—as opposed to members of the opposite sex.
Joan Roughgarden, a transgendered professor of biology at Stanford University, has penned a fascinating-sounding book on the evolutionary role of homosexuality called Evolution’s Rainbow. This month’s Seed magazine features a long article on Roughgarden’s theories, which center on explaining why, if homosexuality is a genetic aberration, it hasn’t been bred out of all species—instead, homosexual coupling is more the norm than the aberration when it comes to most animals. As she says, “a ‘common genetic disease’ is a contradiction in terms, and homosexuality is three to four orders of magnitude more common than true genetic diseases such as Huntington’s disease.”