Why Am I A Lefty?

I am one of the ten percent of the population who’s left-handed.  In school, I was told not to use my left hand for writing, but I found it impossible to comply.  I have since learned to survive in a right-handed world.

Why most people are right-handed is still something of a mystery.  A popular theory is that it’s an inherited trait.  It’s true that left-handed parents produce twenty five percent more left-handed children than others.  However, since about ten percent of identical twins have different handedness, it seems there’s more to the explanation than genes alone.

Another theory is that position in the womb, or certain fetal events, may contribute to left-handedness.  Since twins are more prone to fetal injuries than single births, and since the incidence of left-handedness in twins is more than double the average, there may be something in this theory.

Many people find some particular skill easier when they use the opposite hand to their normal handedness.  For example, I learned to pitch a ball like a right-hander, but bat like a left-hander.  This could be because we learn by copying the way other people do things.  In any event, left-handers as a group are less strongly left-handed, than right-handers are right-handed.

So next time your handedness comes up, be thankful you don’t live in the middle ages, when lefties were branded witches or devils.