I share Quercus' view on this matter and also his observation on this topic. Seems to be controversial like any other subject which deals with one's belief in some way, strongly depending on the person's background (cultural, generational etc.), and as such, one of those issues where some people indeed tend to become rather emotional (for the reason above, and I assume also because for these people, it's tied to the question of their own identity/the feeling of security based on their view of 'balance' in the world).
But this would be better suited to the other thread dealing with this in specific.
As to your second question, Ashrita: As you can see on Cincy's linked page, not all of them are. If the gender assignment isn't clear enough in the description, you can quickly check on Parfumo