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Genetically programmed sex machines

By Jon Ward
Arizona Daily Wildcat
October 8, 1998
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Arizona Daily Wildcat

Jon Ward

Human males. We are born to have as much sex as possible with as many females as possible.

In the animal kingdom, those who are genetically wired with higher sex drives naturally produce more offspring due to their more frequent mating. All other things being equal, those animals who produce more offspring pass on their genes in higher numbers, and eventually outbreed their competitors with lower sex drives. This inescapable fact of biological evolution results in animals tending to be more horny.

I don't mean to imply that sheer numbers spread around among many mates is everything, because, on the contrary, efficiency in rearing offspring to reproductive age is just as important. Gibbons (primate relatives of ours) for instance, reproduce in monogamous pairs only. That's how they're genetically wired. But the gibbons with the higher sex drive will still eventually outbreed their less horny gibbon brethren.

Yes, it is the mandate of Nature that only the horny survive.

This is especially true of human males. We are animals, and like all animals, our behavior is heavily influenced - sometimes even controlled - by our genes. The hornier males make more of themselves until eventually all males are very horny by nature.

Human females on the other hand, would not benefit by being genetically wired sex machines. Think back to the hunter-gatherer days when early hominids were evolving into Homo sapiens. The females who passed on more of their genes were the ones who raised their offspring successfully, the ones who could feed and protect them. And in the wild, that meant having a male around. So, as politically incorrect as it sounds to us, females evolved as mothers, and the ones who could keep a man around were the ones whose genes were passed on.

There were always males around willing to donate sperm, so genes for ultra-high sex drives in females would enjoy no special selective advantage, while maternal instincts would.

On the same token, paternal instincts also enjoyed a selective advantage since babies with fathers were more likely to survive and reproduce themselves. [Picture]

In America today, we still have not come to terms with these facts of our nature. We are sexual creatures. Our culture however, conditions us to view sex as bad and wrong, or dirty. This is a major part of the Christian moral tradition, this despising of the body and its evil pleasures of the flesh. The lures of Satan! The Christians basically incorporated this Platonic idea into their doctrine along with the rest of Plato and his mind-body dualism. In the Phaedo dialogue especially, Plato made clear that the lustful body is the source of evil and corruption, and that its pleasures are dirty temptations to the pure soul, and can only weigh it down. The soul aspires to separation from the loathsome flesh.

This despising of the body and its pleasures, such as sex, which Christianity has traditionally made into a sinful and guilty act, is still with us today.

Sex is as natural and necessary as eating, and yet, Americans have this strange obsession with it. I believe this stems mainly from the fact that sex is a forbidden and dirty act in Christianity, America's religion.

People who like sex are immoral. Men who desire women other than their wives are immoral, even though they are genetically programmed to desire them.

The American obsession and taboo with sex is ludicrous. People skirt the subject, deftly dancing around it in the media, pretending it's somehow wrong or unnatural yet dwelling on it like a bunch of little boys making fart jokes. It's all over TV and film, magazines, everywhere. American men spend over $4 billion on pornography.

President Clinton shouldn't be impeached for getting a blow job and trying to cover it up. Hey, if I was caught with a swiney Monica Lewinsky, I'd lie too. That wouldn't mean I'm not trustworthy in my official capacity. That's what you do when you're doing a fat chick. You lie! But you're a human male and you're programmed for sex.

Of course, humans are intelligent creatures and can exercise restraint of their natural instincts, but that's what it is: restraint. Repression of natural behavior. We need this moral repression, but we should not pretend like men are not repressing their genetically programmed behavior.

If we were completely open about our biological sexuality, if we acknowledged that men must constantly balance their instinctual sex drive with their needs and desires as fathers and husbands, we would not see this sexually obsessed culture that comes to us through the media.

Jon Ward is an astronomy and creative writing junior. His column, Who's the Bull Goose Looney? appears every Thursday and he can be reached via e-mail at