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Old 10-27-2018, 01:40 AM
Status: "Concerned" (set 8 days ago)
 
Location: San Antonio, Texas
37 posts, read 8,244 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by harry chickpea View Post
Similarly, if an animal is a cow, it creates manure. If an animal is a bull, it creates...

For your next lesson, do a web search on chimera. After that, check out the reproductive ways of seahorses.
Seahorses aren't human beings, thank you. Try something a little more intellectual when it comes to argument. The OP was discussing human beings. Scientifically, it is answered. Why are you disputing with purely emotional arguments what Encyclopedia Britannica argued for a great many editions and one of the most crucial points made by Charles Darwin?

 
Old 10-27-2018, 03:49 AM
 
Location: Somewhere in northern Alabama
16,863 posts, read 51,384,651 times
Reputation: 27750
Quote:
Originally Posted by TexasBard79 View Post
Seahorses aren't human beings, thank you. Try something a little more intellectual when it comes to argument. The OP was discussing human beings. Scientifically, it is answered. Why are you disputing with purely emotional arguments what Encyclopedia Britannica argued for a great many editions and one of the most crucial points made by Charles Darwin?
Nice try, but you miss the greater point in my first post. Calling "man" and "woman" scientific terms and requesting a scientific definition sets up a logical fallacy and a trap. Admitting to the premise that the words have scientific import in taxonomy is to take the bait of that trap. I could as well ask "What is the scientific definition of a leprechaun?" The scientific answer is that there is no scientific definition (barring some cutsie co-opting of the word for use in quantum physics).

"Male" and "female" are putatively scientific terms, while "man" and "woman" are of the vulgate.

As I also mentioned in the first post, the O.P. appears from their posting history to be young and of an age where previous experience has been able to divide the entire human race into just two groups - "man" or "woman." The search for validation of that premise that every human has to be a man or a woman, and that can be determined scientifically, is doomed to failure.

Seahorses bring up the difficulty in the way nature doesn't give a toss about our words and definitions, and the perverse nature of their reproduction shows our folly in slavish deification of words. The "female" ejects eggs like sperm, and the "male" hosts the live birth.

Science is on the verge of making the "man" "woman" division even more optional, where human males can have eggs and females sperm.

An Embryo with Two Biological Dads? One Day, the Answer May Be 'Yes' | Time

BBC - Future - Virgin births: Do we need sex to reproduce?

To further blow the black and white distinction of humans being only "man" or "woman," there are known chimreas. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chimera_(genetics)

I suspect that you really don't want to know how a virgin birth (outside of parthenogenesis, which seems unlikely in an organism as complex as a human) might occur in nature, with a scientific explanation of it.

In summation, the presence of a particular set of genitalia becomes less important as science advances, and categorizing people as man/woman more relevant to religion than science.
 
Old 10-27-2018, 07:04 AM
 
Location: Westwood, MA
3,474 posts, read 4,362,492 times
Reputation: 4477
Quote:
Originally Posted by harry chickpea View Post
Nice try, but you miss the greater point in my first post. Calling "man" and "woman" scientific terms and requesting a scientific definition sets up a logical fallacy and a trap. Admitting to the premise that the words have scientific import in taxonomy is to take the bait of that trap. I could as well ask "What is the scientific definition of a leprechaun?" The scientific answer is that there is no scientific definition (barring some cutsie co-opting of the word for use in quantum physics).

"Male" and "female" are putatively scientific terms, while "man" and "woman" are of the vulgate.

As I also mentioned in the first post, the O.P. appears from their posting history to be young and of an age where previous experience has been able to divide the entire human race into just two groups - "man" or "woman." The search for validation of that premise that every human has to be a man or a woman, and that can be determined scientifically, is doomed to failure.

Seahorses bring up the difficulty in the way nature doesn't give a toss about our words and definitions, and the perverse nature of their reproduction shows our folly in slavish deification of words. The "female" ejects eggs like sperm, and the "male" hosts the live birth.

Science is on the verge of making the "man" "woman" division even more optional, where human males can have eggs and females sperm.

An Embryo with Two Biological Dads? One Day, the Answer May Be 'Yes' | Time

BBC - Future - Virgin births: Do we need sex to reproduce?

To further blow the black and white distinction of humans being only "man" or "woman," there are known chimreas. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chimera_(genetics)

I suspect that you really don't want to know how a virgin birth (outside of parthenogenesis, which seems unlikely in an organism as complex as a human) might occur in nature, with a scientific explanation of it.

In summation, the presence of a particular set of genitalia becomes less important as science advances, and categorizing people as man/woman more relevant to religion than science.
You don't have to look very hard in the literature to see scientists using the terms "man" and "woman" in a definite way. This idea that a small fraction of people (upper estimates are about 2%) that don't fit the terms neatly means the terms are completely useless is counterproductive. Most people are distinctly male or female and can be unambiguously called men or women. Suggesting that no one can be is just as wrong than saying everyone must be. In the same way that suggesting there are no sex specific traits is just as wrong as saying sex specific traits are universal.

Similarly, using seahorse reproduction to inform human sexes is also misguided. Seahorses are pretty far removed from humans. They're chordates, so not incredibly remote, but they diverged some 400 million years ago. It's a bit like saying humans can't have feet because fish don't have feet.
 
Old 10-27-2018, 07:28 AM
 
Location: Old Hippie Heaven
16,266 posts, read 7,125,741 times
Reputation: 9255
Yes, most humans do manifest as either male or female. But quite a few don’t. In some interesting cases, an individual who has always been identified as a particular gender doesn’t find out that s/he is in fact intersex until there are fertility problems. It’s more common than you might think.

That’s because there are so many semi-independent systems involved in determining a person’s biological sex and gender identity.

Seahorses and other examples were brought up to point out that the biological definition of male and female is considerably more wide-ranging than man and woman. If you re-read OP’s post #5, you will see that it conflates the two. The overwhelming number of species on earth do not have penises and vaginas, yet still have males and females. A scientific definition of male/female has to take all manifestations into account. Man and woman only applies to humans.

Last edited by jacqueg; 10-27-2018 at 08:44 AM..
 
Old 10-27-2018, 10:02 AM
 
Location: Somewhere in northern Alabama
16,863 posts, read 51,384,651 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jayrandom View Post
You don't have to look very hard in the literature to see scientists using the terms "man" and "woman" in a definite way. This idea that a small fraction of people (upper estimates are about 2%) that don't fit the terms neatly means the terms are completely useless is counterproductive. Most people are distinctly male or female and can be unambiguously called men or women. Suggesting that no one can be is just as wrong than saying everyone must be. In the same way that suggesting there are no sex specific traits is just as wrong as saying sex specific traits are universal.

Similarly, using seahorse reproduction to inform human sexes is also misguided. Seahorses are pretty far removed from humans. They're chordates, so not incredibly remote, but they diverged some 400 million years ago. It's a bit like saying humans can't have feet because fish don't have feet.
Quoting the O.P. -"I have tried finding hard scientific definitions of the two sexes, but I just end up finding flimsy speculations about "gender fluidity" without any actual science behind it." With Markus's other interests in Video Games, Exercise and Fitness, and Psychology forums, I speculate the possible motivations for the asking of the initial question and the frustration at the lack of confirmation of a clear delineation.

While the percentage of clinically intersex individuals is small, it is real. Good science doesn't ignore reality. These are real people that don't fit the terms neatly. Forcing those unique individuals to conform, to "fit" into stereotypes of male or female has come to be recognized as misguided.

https://www.msn.com/en-us/health/voi...cid=spartanntp

We all use the vulgate in daily conversation, and there is nothing wrong with that - as long as we understand its limitations. The existence of testosterone was only determined in 1935, and the varying effects of it, based upon stages of development in a fetus when it was prominent, are even more recent discoveries. It takes time for science to filter into common knowledge.

Every one of us has noted the differences that testosterone makes in athletes, and most accept that as part of the variations of sexual expression. The trap there is to somehow equate that with "maleness." Males can have varying amounts of testosterone and still be male. Likewise, females also have varying amounts of the hormone. For the purposes of religion and advertising, "manliness" may be a sought after trait. Scientifically, other than noting it as a by-product of hormonal development with certain characteristics, it means diddly-squat. When you start to talk about unambiguously man, or unambiguously woman, your footing can slide out from under you, as someone who appears to be unambiguously a man very well might be intersex, while a man with feminine traits be completely scientifically male.

Science uses precise language and definitions in part to avoid cultural bias. Cultural bias does exist, but it is not science. Hence, my being pedantic that man and woman are not scientific words with scientific definitions, but words that existed prior to use of the scientific method and exist as part of the common language. Anything other than a scientific gloss has to confront the fact that humans have male, female, and intersex offspring. Only tradition-bound religion and cultural bias have any need to turn a blind eye to the reality of intersex.
 
Old 10-27-2018, 11:23 AM
 
Location: Aurora Denveralis
3,084 posts, read 1,040,161 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by harry chickpea View Post
While the percentage of clinically intersex individuals is small, it is real.
However, your strenuous arguments that, because there are a very small handful of exceptions, a simple and obvious dichotomy is nonsense, approaches the surreal.
 
Old 10-27-2018, 11:31 AM
 
Location: Pacific 🌉 N, 🌄W
10,085 posts, read 4,161,649 times
Reputation: 6371
Quote:
Originally Posted by Markus86 View Post
I have tried finding hard scientific definitions of the two sexes, but I just end up finding flimsy speculations about "gender fluidity" without any actual science behind it.
So all wishful thinking and personal feelings aside, what are the objective definitions of "man" and "woman"?

My understanding so far is that men are individuals with a penis, XY-chromosomes and testicles, whereas women are individuals with a vagina, XX-chromosomes, a uterus and an ovary.
Are there any other definitions?
In humans and other placental mammals, the Y chromosome mechanism of sex determination occurs, in which the Y chromosome determines the sex of an individual. Individuals with a Y chromosome are genetically male and individuals without a Y chromosome are genetically female.

This dichotomy occurs because the Y chromosome uniquely carries an important gene (or perhaps genes) that sets the molecular switch towards male sexual differentiation. The gene product is called testis-determining factor, and the corresponding gene is the testis-determining factor gene (TDF).

Testis-determining factor causes the tissue that will become the gonads to differentiate into testes instead of ovaries. In the absence of a Y chromosome, the gonads develop as ovaries.

Quote:
The testis-determining factor gene (TDF) lies on the Y chromosome and is responsible for initiating male sex determination. SRY is a gene located in the sex-determining region of the human and mouse Y chromosomes and has many of the properties expected for TDFl–3 Sex reversal in XY females results from the failure of the testis determination or differentiation pathways.

Source: Genetic evidence equating SRY and the testis-determining factor
Evidence for the Y chromosome mechanism of sex determination in mammals comes from early studies in which nondisjunction in meiosis produced an abnormal sex chromosome complement. Nondisjunction can lead to XO individuals. In humans, XO individuals with the normal two sets of autosomes are female and sterile, and they exhibit Turner syndrome. Turner syndrome individuals have only one sex chromosome: the X chromosome. 1 in every 10,000 females born have this syndrome.

Nondisjunction can also result in the generation of XXY humans, who are male and have Klinefelter syndrome. About 1 in 1,000 males born have this syndrome. These XXY males have underdeveloped testes and often are taller than the average male. Some degree of breast development is seen in about 50% of affected individuals, and some show subnormal intelligence.

Individuals with similar phenotypes are also found with higher numbers of X or Y chromosomes (or both). For example there are individuals with XXXY and XXYY.

The problems found in Klinefelter individuals indicate that one X and one Y chromosome are needed for normal development in males.


Interesting in that when I was learning about this syndrome in my genetics course in college I had a male classmate that we all suspected had this syndrome.

I hope this helps.
 
Old 10-27-2018, 12:32 PM
 
Location: Somewhere in northern Alabama
16,863 posts, read 51,384,651 times
Reputation: 27750
Quote:
Originally Posted by Quietude View Post
However, your strenuous arguments that, because there are a very small handful of exceptions, a simple and obvious dichotomy is nonsense, approaches the surreal.
*shrug* It is simply what is needed to push back against millennia of uneducated thought. In a different setting where the concepts were clearly understood, I wouldn't bother to press the point.

The more people are exposed to variance, and pushed into recognizing that it exists and is fine, - even at the expense of my seemingly surreal resistance to a simple black and white concept - the less likely they are to embrace other stupidities that have a thin and torn cloak of science hiding them.

Matadora's post is much more along the lines of scientific response than comments about penises and vaginas being the determining factor of male or female. The concepts of sexes goes well beyond the basic "birds and bees" talk that parents might have with their children.
 
Old 10-27-2018, 12:40 PM
 
Location: Central IL
13,422 posts, read 7,159,129 times
Reputation: 31176
Dr. John Money is a very controversial figure, and for good reason, but this discussion that cites him heavily is very informative about the complexities and why it is not so simple as male OR female:

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/10/25/o...gy-binary.html
 
Old 10-27-2018, 01:37 PM
 
Location: Aurora Denveralis
3,084 posts, read 1,040,161 times
Reputation: 3942
Quote:
Originally Posted by harry chickpea View Post
The concepts of sexes goes well beyond the basic "birds and bees" talk that parents might have with their children.
Most presexual children don't care about anything but weenies and woo-woos. Which neither means there aren't many more complex concepts at the adult and academic levels, nor that children have to be elaborately schooled in the seven or nine genders they might encounter when they start bar-hopping.
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