A Nigerian post-graduate student at the University of Lagos in Nigeria has allegedly conducted some supposedly groundbreaking research to prove, without a doubt, that marriage equality is not only wrong, but also physically impossible…using magnets, along with other very simple experiments and mathematics. According to ThisDay Live, a Nigerian publication, Chibuihem Amalaha said of his physics experiment:
“I used two bar magnets in my research. A bar magnet is a horizontal magnet that has the North Pole and the South Pole and when you bring two bar magnets and you bring the North Pole together you find that the two North Poles will not attract. They will repel, that is, they will push away themselves showing that a man should not attract a man. If you bring two South Poles together you find that the two South Poles will not attract indicating that same-sex marriage should not hold. A female should not attract a female as South Pole of a magnet does not attract the South Pole of a magnet. But, when you bring a North Pole of a magnet and a South Pole of a magnet they will attract because they are not the same, indicating that a man will attract a woman because of the way nature has made a female.”
The biggest and most obvious problem here is that small children generally figure out on their own that magnets attract each other when placed one way, and repel when one is then flipped over or turned around. This is hardly “groundbreaking.” But there’s a more complicated problem too: The physics of magnets does not really apply to human interaction, or even, really, animal interaction, and certainly not to the degree that Amalaha says. Simply put, if this were true, people either wouldn’t be gay because they literally couldn’t be, or if they could still be gay, they’d be alone or in entirely celibate relationships, having tried to be sexually involved people of their same gender and found it literally impossible.
But wait! There’s more. Amalaha’s research did not stop with magnets. He went on with chemical experiments, except…he used the simple neutralization reaction of mixing an acid with a base to produce salt and water as further proof that being gay is scientifically impossible. According to him, if you pour a base on top of a base, you get no reaction, which shows that men on top of men doesn’t work. Same with women on top of women; acid on acid proves the scientific impossibility of homosexuality.
He went on to explain that, in the reaction known as electrolysis, positive ions are attracted to negative ions, and vice versa, again proving that men belong only with women, and women belong only with men.
Again, hardly groundbreaking stuff. This still has nothing to do with human interaction, behavior, or even the pheromones that help make people become attracted to each other. Very simple physics and chemistry experiments that are taught in elementary and junior high school classrooms can’t explain the psychology, and the physiology, of sexuality and sexual identity.
Mathematically, Amalaha actually uses kindergarten/first-grade math to show that only heterosexual behavior works. He told ThisDay Live that, since A + B will always equal B + A, math proves that homosexuality is impossible. A man and a man are A + A, which equal A (or, in reality, 2A, which he does acknowledge), and that the same applies to two women together. But let’s look at this one. A + A will always equal 2A, and A + B will always equal B + A. His conclusion is that A + B is a change whereas A + A is not, but that’s not true. We learned, at the latest, in first grade, that 2 + 3 = 5, and 2 + 2 = 4. Both show changes. 2 + 2 does not equal 2, so he’s wrong in that there is no change, or in his words, a reaction, here.
Does he ever get to the biology of homosexuality, or even just human interaction and attraction? Does he ever even just get to biology?
Yes! As a matter of fact, he does. He explains that we never see male lions mate with male lions, or hens mate with hens, or cocks mate with cocks (no pun intended). His implication in his biological explanation is similar to what we tend to hear the more ignorant amongst us here in the U.S. saying, and that is, homosexual behavior never occurs in the wild, therefore it is unnatural and should not occur in human populations either.
Actually, the opposite is true. The animal kingdom is rife with homosexual behavior. Petter Böckman, a zoologist at the University of Oslo, says that homosexual behavior is common in everything from flamingos to bears to some types of fish, with owls, gorillas, and more, totaling more than 1,500 species worldwide. There are a lot of theories as to why this is, since it doesn’t overtly contribute to the gene pool and should have been weeded out by nature eons ago. Some think it’s simply because sex is pleasurable for more than just humans. Others think it might be practice for heterosexual sex, or to strengthen bonds. Still others believe that, at least in communal groups, where the young are raised by the entire community, those who engage only in homosexual behavior contribute to the gene pool by being able to contribute resources that are undiluted by having their own young.
This is old news. It’s not on the same extremely simple and basic level of Amalaha’s other experiments, but it’s not exactly groundbreaking science, either. And given that this part of his biological explanation is outright false, it’s a wonder it’s even been considered.
He goes further to explain that when a man and a woman are attracted to each other and see each other, a hormone in the man’s brain stimulates sperm production, which helps to stimulate the woman’s ovarian follicles. With this, Amalaha implies that the attraction of a man to a woman stimulates ovulation, which it doesn’t, and proves beyond doubt that homosexuality, and especially marriage between homosexuals, is wrong.
This extremely simplistic, elementary school level of science, and his less-than rudimentary understanding of biology, human and animal, have gotten him accolades at the University of Lagos and in Nigeria. Nigerian law currently punishes homosexual behavior with as much as 14 years in jail, so it’s not especially surprising that they might consider his work to be significant justification of their position.
Amalaha hopes to publish this supposedly “groundbreaking” science in international science journals, and he’s apparently been told he’ll win a Nobel Prize someday, which is also one of his long-term goals. According to The Huffington Post UK, a writer for the South African gay lifestyle website Mambaonline.com called the interview absurd, and the article on ThisDay Live “embarrassing.” It’s worse than that, this is a guy who also claims, early in the interview, to have proven that 22/7 does not quite equal pi. Really? Anybody who’s ever taken basic geometry knows that!
With research like this, it’s a wonder anybody at any university level even took him seriously, let alone allowed him to become a post-graduate student. This entire body of research, if it can even be called that, is worthy of nothing more than an epic Jean-Luc Picard facepalm.