More on the 60 Minutes Gay or Straight Segment

During the segment, Leslie Stahl asked Michael Bailey’s views of how gay and straight men compare.

“… Straight men are more interested than straight women in having casual, uncommitted sex. Gay men are like that, too,” says Bailey.

“One has the impression that gay men are much more inclined toward casual sex than straight men,” Stahl said.

“They’re just more successful at it, because the people they’re trying to have sex with are also interested in it,” Bailey explained.

“But don’t you find this interesting that the one big area where gay men are more like straight men is in sex? I mean, that is…both amusing and odd,” Stahl said.

“It suggests that whatever causes a man to be gay doesn’t make him feminine in every respect. There must be different parts of the brain that can be feminized independently from each other,” Bailey replied.

Could be. Or this lack of consistency could mean that the theory is wrong. Saying “there must be different parts” doesn’t make it so.

The producer Shari Finkelstein was defended by Brian Montopoli on the CBS Blog by saying:

“The key for Finkelstein – as it was for Scott Pelley in a piece on global warming – was to stick to science.”

If the writers had stuck to the science, then the show would not have come to the conclusions it did. In fact, given the state of the science, there would not have been conclusions. On point, here is a quote from the piece: “There are many more questions at this point than answers, but the scientists 60 Minutes spoke to are increasingly convinced that genes, hormones, or both — that something is happening to determine sexual orientation before birth.” If there are many more questions than answers then how can the scientists be “increasingly convinced?”

How is this stance sticking to the science?