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56 DePaul L. Rev. 997 (2006-2007)
The Biological Causes and Consequences of Homosexual Behavioral and Their Relevance for Family Law Politics

handle is hein.journals/deplr56 and id is 1007 raw text is: THE BIOLOGICAL CAUSES AND CONSEQUENCES
Lynn D. Wardle*
A number of scholars at this Symposium addressed the issue of
whether the choice to engage in homosexual behavior has a biological
cause. This highly contested issue is critical in the development of
family law policies regarding the relationships of gays and lesbians.
This Article begins with a review of the scientific literature on the
immutability of homosexual behavior. It shows how little we actually
know about the causes of homosexual attraction and behavior. Any
significant reliance upon current information about the biological or
social causes of homosexual attraction in formulating or reformulating
legal policy would be premature. We must await the maturation and
development of this knowledge base.
The major focus of this Article is not the biological causes of homo-
sexual attraction, but the biological effects of homosexual behavior on
human health. Our understanding of the biological consequences of
engaging in homosexual behavior is also incomplete, because social
acceptance of homosexual behavior is a relatively recent phenome-
non. Nevertheless, in the past three decades, valuable information
about the consequences of this behavior has more fully developed.
Putting aside past and prevailing stereotypes and myths about the
consequences of homosexual behavior, this research into the health
risks of engaging in homosexual behavior is relevant to a number of
family law and policy issues: the legal recognition of same-sex mar-
riage, domestic violence, adoption and foster care by gay and lesbian
* Bruce C. Hafen Professor of Law, J. Reuben Clark Law School, Brigham Young Univer-
sity. I gratefully acknowledge the research assistance of BYU Law School students Jacob Ong,
Evie Brinkerhoff, and Kevin J. Fiet, the psychological expertise and advice of A. Dean Byrd,
Ph.D., M.B.A., and the production assistance of Marcene Mason. I thank Professor Jane Ruth-
erford, who invited me to participate in this Symposium, Christine Matott, Symposium Editor
for Volume 55 of the DePaul Law Review, and her associates, who were so gracious and compe-
tent in arranging and managing the logistics of the Symposium, and also their successors, who
edited the papers for publication.

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