Sex Determination: More Complicated Than You Thought

Sex Determination: More Complicated Than You Thought

How is sex determined? In humans, it’s a matter of genetics, and it begins the moment a sperm cell fertilizes an egg, thereby producing a certain combination of sex chromosomes. Throughout the animal kingdom, though, sex determination varies widely and isn’t always genetically based, as biologist Aaron Reedy explains in the TED-Ed video below. For example, in some species—such as alligators and turtles—sex is actually determined by the environment. Specifically, the sex of these reptiles depends upon the temperature of their eggs at a critical point in development (cooler = male; warmer = female). Check out the video below to learn more about  other fascinating variations in how sex is determined throughout nature.

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Video: This Is What LGBT Life Is Like Around The World

Video: This Is What LGBT Life Is Like Around The World

The United States has made great strides toward equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) Americans over the past 15 years. For example, same-sex marriage is now legal nationwide, more states have adopted anti-discrimination laws protecting LGBT persons, and the federal hate crimes statute has been expanded to cover sexual and gender minorities. But what are things like for LGBT persons in other parts of the world?

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What Percentage Of The Population Is LGBT?

How many people in the United States identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgendered (LGBT)? A recent Gallup poll that received a lot of media attention put the overall number at 3.4% of the population and reported that women were slightly more likely than men to identify as LGBT (3.6% vs. 3.3%). How much stock should we put in the results of this poll? In light of other published sex surveys, I would be cautious about drawing too many conclusions from it.   
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