Sexualized Saturdays: Orphan Black, Genetics, and Sexuality

Let's… not talk about this.

Let’s… not talk about this.

The ‘born this way’ argument, which argues that sexuality is part of your genetic code, the same as brown eyes or the ability to curl your tongue, is currently the most popular defense of queer sexualities in the media. It’s most often used as a way to defend queer people to bigots, in the sense of “why would you hate these people for something that they did not have any choice in being?”

I am of two minds about this way of looking at things. On one hand, I do feel that sexuality, much like race or gender, is something you’re born with; I don’t know that I or any other queer person I know ever made a choice to be queer, or indeed, would choose to be queer in a world that is still actively discriminatory toward LGBTQ+ people. However, it’s sort of shitty that we have to resort to “please accept us because we can’t help ourselves” as a defense. If we had chosen to be queer, why would that make us more worthy of judgment?

Luce and I finished watching the first season of Orphan Black recently, and while the finale addressed many of the questions I had, there are several things I would still like to know about the clones. Out of all of these, the foremost is probably “are they gonna get into how Cosima is a lesbian and the rest of the clones aren’t?” Given that the Clone Club are all essentially genetically identical, I’m surprised no one’s even brought up the fact that of all of them, only Cosima has canonically displayed same-sex attraction.

OrphanBlack_S1_E05_27_photo_web-1024x576Spoilers for Orphan Black under the cut.

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