Wingnut Doesn’t Believe in Gay People

Jerry Kennedy is the host of one of the approximately 14.8 million right-wing internet “TV” shows, America’s Survival. He’s also abysmally ignorant of biology, which prompts him to make the incredibly dumb comment that he doesn’t believe gay people exist at all.

Speaking with co-host Peter LaBarbera, Kenney maintained that there is nothing “natural” about homosexuality before switching gears and saying that, even if it were natural, “there are a lot of things that are natural that aren’t necessarily good.”

“I don’t believe in gay people, I don’t believe there is such a thing as a gay person,” Kenney asserted. “And I would like somebody, somewhere, with all of these great gay think tanks they claim to have, to prove to me scientifically that there really is what the call a gay gene or whatever. They can’t. There isn’t. It’s a behavior.”

Who, exactly, is it that claims to have “great gay think tanks”? I’m guessing he extracted that from the same place he extracted his claim about gay genes — ironically, from his ass. No one believes that there is such a thing as a “gay gene that, when switched on, makes a person gay. That’s a blatant straw man, brought on either by ignorance of genetics or dishonesty, take your pick. Rather, scientists believe it to be an epigenetic phenomenon, a combination of genetics and environment (in the womb, not after being born).

“If it’s genetic, wouldn’t it have died with the first person who had the gene mutation?” he asked. “How did they reproduce? But they say, ‘Well, it’s natural.” Okay, let’s accept that argument. There are a lot of things that are natural that aren’t necessarily good. In nature, animals rape one another. So should rape be okay? Some animals eat their own waste, is that okay? Animals eat their young. Is our new standard now, in this society that we’ve brought down and as long as we’re at the animal level then it’s okay?”

Congratulations, you’ve discovered the naturalistic fallacy. Now if only that were relevant to someone’s actual position rather than the straw position you’ve invented.

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  • ed440

    He obviously has never heard of recessive genes.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1246980039 caseyboucher

    Just because a trait isn’t Mendelian, doesn’t mean that it doesn’t have a genetic component.

    There are likely several genetic factors influencing sexual orientation and stochastic genetic drift, coupled with incomplete phenotypic penetrance, is more than sufficient to explain how homosexuality would survive in the population.

    Wingnuts fail basic biology. But that’s not exactly news.

  • John Pieret

    But they say, ‘Well, it’s natural.” Okay, let’s accept that argument. There are a lot of things that are natural that aren’t necessarily good.

    Great! At least one wingnut who won’t buy the “carbon dioxide can’t be hurting the environment because plants need it” argument! (Who am I kidding?)

  • pacal

    Jerry Kennedy says:

    I don’t believe in gay people, I don’t believe there is such a thing as a gay person,” Kenney asserted. “And I would like somebody, somewhere, with all of these great gay think tanks they claim to have, to prove to me scientifically that there really is what the call a gay gene or whatever. They can’t. There isn’t. It’s a behavior.

    The stupidity of this comment is rather obvious. However it is clear Jerry hasn’t thought very much of the ramifications of his statement. May I point out the since being a Christian, Republican, Mason etc., are behaviors this must mean that Christians, Republicans and Masons don’t exist with this sort of “logic”.

  • gshelley

    To re-phrase

    “I don’t believe in Christians, I don’t believe there is such a thing as a Christian person,” Kenney asserted. “And I would like somebody, somewhere, with all of these great Christina think tanks they claim to have, to prove to me scientifically that there really is what the call a Christian gene or whatever. They can’t. There isn’t. It’s a behavior”

    I doubt it would take him long to see how bad that argument was

  • dugglebogey

    Literally got his science from watching “Family Guy.”

  • eric

    (in the womb, not after being born).

    I wouldn’t be too surprised if some early childhood development factors were involved too. Lots of traits (a) have a strong genetic component and (b) are fixed in adulthood but (c) nevertheless are strongly impacted by childhood development. Height being the most obvious.

    Congratulations, you’ve discovered the naturalistic fallacy. Now if only that were relevant to someone’s actual position

    Oh, but it is! Anti-SSM folks use the naturalistic fallacy all the time. See, for just one example, here. So what we should say is: congratulations, you’ve discovered why many of your own side’s arguments are really really bad.

  • abb3w

    While he’s discovered the naturalistic fallacy, he probably hasn’t realized that “Natural Law” arguments fall into the category, and would likely require a lot of luck to manage to grasp that concept.

  • robnyny

    I don’t think the point is that anyone is invoking the naturalistic fallacy. The anti-gay position used to be that homosexuality was unnatural, and therefore bad. Now that position has been scrapped in favor of the argument that homosexuality, while natural, is not necessarily good. This is a rear-guard action, and not the same as the naturalistic fallacy.

  • U Frood

    ” There are a lot of things that are natural that aren’t necessarily good. ”

    Yes, but YOU were the one who brought up nature and tried to claim homosexuality was evil because it wasn’t natural…

    I prefer to go the other way:

    Your Bible isn’t natural, you should obviously stay away from it.

  • abb3w

    robnyny

    This is a rear-guard action, and not the same as the naturalistic fallacy.

    Wikipedia notes the distinction between “appeal to nature” and “naturalistic fallacy”, so there may be some technically correct point there. Contrariwise, it does not seem one recognized in “common” usage; the term is broadly used to cover any attempt to deal with the is-ought problem via consideration of what is “natural” as a means to determine what is “good”.

  • http://en.uncyclopedia.co/wiki/User:Modusoperandi Modusoperandi

    If it’s genetic, wouldn’t it have died with the first person who had the gene mutation?” he asked. “How did they reproduce?’

    Commonly, for years and years they crush their feelings deep down inside, eventually marrying a person of the opposite sex, which goes on in self loathing and misery until one is caught at midnight in a public restroom with their non-metaphorical pants down.

  • whheydt

    Someone needs to ask him why sickle cell anemia persists in spite of the fact that it kills people that have the trait in full. He *might* learn something, but since I doubt he could actually explain what is going on, it’s not very likely that he would.

  • colnago80

    Re whheydt @ #13

    See comment #1.

  • scienceavenger

    “great gay think tanks”

    He misheard the newly allowed gay soldiers, they were talking about the great gay pink tanks…loaded with glitter bombs…

  • Pierce R. Butler

    The gay think tanks I’ve heard of aren’t merely great, they’re fabulous.

  • http://essaressellwye.tumblr.com Hershele Ostropoler

    Odd. Normally it’s heterosexuality that they don’t believe in (see “if we let people just going around being gay, everyone will do it”)

  • felidae

    So, how does this shitforbrains Kenney explain gay sheep?

    http://www.hedweb.com/animimag/gaysheep.html

  • http://festeringscabofrealityblogspot.com fifthdentist

    “Twelve voices were shouting in anger, and they were all alike. No question, now, what happened to the faces of the Christians. The creatures outside looked from Christian to Muslim, and Muslim to Christian, and from Christian to Muslim again; but already it was impossible to say which was which.” — with apologies to George Orwell

    It’s amazing how much people like Phil Robertson and ISIS are starting to sound — and in his case look — alike. Jerry Kenney, here, reminds me of Iran’s former president, who I won’t name so I don’t have to look up the proper spelling, who claimed that there were no gay people in Iran.

  • caseloweraz

    Ed: Who, exactly, is it that claims to have “great gay think tanks”?

    Nobody. Even Stan Freberg never said anything about “great gay think tanks.” He did, of course, make a commercial touting the “eight great tomatoes” in each can of a certain brand of tomato paste.

    Stan Freberg died yesterday in Santa Monica, by the way. He was 88. Among his comedy works were some that had a bite during the McCarthy era — like Point of Order.

  • rietpluim

    Where is the straight gene?

  • Childermass

    “environment (in the womb, not after being born)”

    Would it matter when it happened?

    Still be careful. The environment after being born could, in theory, be a factor. Babies are certainly not gay or straight in any meaningful way. There is nothing magical about the time of birth and it is not a boundary between “a choice” and “not a choice.” Sexual orientation is not a choice no matter when the factors that created it happened.

  • Kermit Sansoo

    Is he saying that he’s gay, but only his Christian faith keeps him on the straight and narrow? If he doesn’t feel such urges himself, then he must think that… what? That folks who reject the dogly path and self-indulge will have sex that they don’t enjoy?

    .

    He says “It’s behavior.” Well, yes. If people behave that way, they are generally gay. What does he think a gay person is? These folks confused the hell out of me (actually, they confused the God out of me) when I was a kid. They never described human behavior in any sensible way.

    .

    Among other things, they seem to think that our desires are voluntary (like our general behavior). which results in confused rants like this.

  • coffeehound

    great gay think tanks

    Great. Now I HAVE to start a band.

  • marcus

    eric @ 7 Clean-up on aisle 7! Someone just puked up a whole mess of inconsistent, inconsequential and irrelevant verbiage on the “Public Discourse” aisle. Bring a big clean-up bucket!

    I poked at it a bit, it was disgusting! I didn’t want to get any of it on me so I pretty much let it alone. Ewwwwww!

  • http://essaressellwye.tumblr.com Hershele Ostropoler

    Kermit @ 23

    If he doesn’t feel such urges himself, then he must think that… what? That folks who reject the dogly path and self-indulge will have sex that they don’t enjoy?

    I think that is more or less what they think, the homophobes who don’t feel that particular pull. Gay people can’t be enjoying it, the homophobes figure, so they must be doing it out of sheer contrariness and a deliberate rejection of all things good.