The Parables of Runts

The Parables of Runts

All across the animal kingdom there are runts in every litter. In every herd, pack and pride there are runts. In every brood, nest and colony there are runts. We know they are there. We can see them. That’s why we have a word for it. Every language has a word for the runt of the litter. He’s there among the puppies. He’s there among the kittens. And it’s almost always a he. Oh yes, runts are he’s. It’s the rare female of the species who’s a runt.

In nature the runts are lion’s food. And cheetah snacks. And leopard dinner. Oh yes, the runts are the ones run down by the predators. The runt who can’t run as fast, or doesn’t jump as high. Those runts are prey. This is nature’s way.

Among the lions, cheetahs and leopards, though, there are runts too. They’re picked off by other predators, like jackals and large birds of prey.

And in every specie there are runts, none are exempt. The genetic mix just turns out something less than perfect. The moment sperm touched egg and the two DNA embraced in the marvelous helix of life, that offspring is going to be runt. That this is natural is not questioned. This is simply the way it is. There are runts.

And among the human species, the runts are not consumed. Well, mostly. For a portion are coddled, and given medical care perhaps, or special attention for special needs. All manner of expense and all manner of effort are rightly expended on making sure even the runt is given succor and sustenance, acceptance and support, even cherished and loved all the more. The nerd-runts among us have devised a most wondrous gizmo filled world. Not all men can be Marines. They are rightly a few and proud. Still, the rest are less than perfect. And some less than that. They are the runts.

But there is, however, a sort of runt of the litter that is said to be evil. Oh not by everyone anymore. No. It is getting better. But by enough. Far too many, actually. And important people at that. People who are perhaps more than a runt, all perfect even, perhaps. Surely the many who are big, and strong, virile and athletic, and capable of great thought. But, still, it is many of these important people, powerful people, who sway the opinions of many lesser thinkers and less important people, who say that a certain sort of runt is evil. This they are sure of. Men such as Justice Antonin Scalia. But he’s not the only one, I put him forth only as an example. There are many others, too many.

Though they are all quite capable of seeing runts that will be taken down by the lion. All are quite willing to accede that nature sometimes just makes a boo boo and some runt is born. They are all well aware that some progeny will simply never reproduce, and will perhaps even die young. Not a one of them is unaware that there are less than perfect physical specimens of every species on earth. And not a one of them doesn’t think this is what God himself ordained through Creation. And I believe it too. I know it too. There are runts abounding. I’m a runt. I accept that.

It should not therefore be surprising that the most complex species has runts too. And runts of a more complex nature. After all, we’re more complex. There are runts among the cockroaches, for sure, but they are less complex, though they do become lizard food. There are runts too among the bees, and perhaps are killed off by the hive. There are runts among the birds, even if they get kicked out of the nest to die in the forest fodder below. And since runts are created in that marvelous God-blessed moment of conception, well, then, that’s that. It’s just natural. Though, sadly, in the great food chain of existence, they are dispatched summarily into the hands of God. And since God did make these runts, either individually if you are that religious, or through the grand mechanism of evolution, He probably welcomes them just a little bit faster than the perfect. For the perfect have no more claim to the Kingdom of Heaven than a natural born runt. And God knows what He’s doing.

And what we runts, aka gay folks, say is that we too are from that marvelous moment of creation. We too are simply natural. Occam’s razor dictates that it must be so. For the physical difference is too obvious. Go watch a gay softball league game in your city park. Oh, they happen. Sure, though you might not be aware of it. Though we only have softball leagues because we’re, well, we’re runts. Big boys baseball is sort of out of our league. Same with our soccer games. Go to the National Gay Rodeo Association and watch the runts play cowboy. Go to the Gay Games and watch the runts of the Olympics. Go to a gay church and see the runts thank God for our marvelous being. Or just think back to any sissy you beat up in the human version of the food chain. That was a runt you pummeled. To prove you were perfect perhaps.

In every species that roves in groups there’s a pecking order. This too we see. But the big and the strong and the perfect don’t try to destroy those lower down in the pecking order. No, everyone has their place within the group. But not in human society. No, the runts at the bottom of the pecking order, the gay folks, we are to be destroyed. We are to be pummeled. We are not to be coddled. We have no place in the order, it is said. At best, now, after it got better, we are tolerated to one degree or another. But not coddled, no. That would be “promoting” gayness or something. That would be “promoting” being a runt.

But what do we human animals say about this one type of runt? You call us evil, and sick, and depraved and demented. And you spend many a Sunday describing all the horrors of our kind. And yet, you don’t seem to realize that in doing so you are teaching the runts among you how to be a runt. You don’t teach us to be runts, no. For we are. But you teach us, inadvertently, how we should conduct ourselves. Or so you think. For we gay runts are nurtured in a way. You teach us how we supposedly must act. But still, when 95% of us figure out what you’re talking about, we’re appalled. And so then we go lead good decent lives. Though we still be runts.

No, our society does not coddle gay runts. Tolerance is what we have achieved in trying to explain to you that we’re just runts. If only you’d open your eyes and do a little science thinking. For just as there are runts of every kind in nature, we gay folks are the runts of the human species. But from the moment our helix was entwined into life.

And when I read some of the things written about us, and listen to some of the things said, I fear for my people. Look at what you are teaching your gay runts. Think about what you are telling the young boys who will grow up gay. Do you not think we hear you? Are we not in the room, perhaps? You are telling us, your runts, we are evil. You don’t seem to notice us as young boys – pubescent as we are, when we realize we’re gay, just like you figured out you were not. Unless of course, obviously, the boy’s a sissy. Or a fag, or queer, or whatever other charming word you have for us runts of your litter. But still, we know we’re your runts, even if you do not. And we listen. And you teach. And then you accuse us of doing what you teach. And worse, you accuse us of threatening you for doing you have taught us. No gay child ever thought of a bus station restroom as a place for sex. But that’s what you said. So some of, long ago, went down there. And we were sickened, and went no more.

And worse still, you accuse us of threatening your existence for having the temerity to be born as runts.

This is what you are saying. That gay folks are evil from the moment of conception. And that, folks, well, that’s just evil. That’s just so morally wrong. To blame us for having been born this way, for having been nurtured this way, and having been predisposed this way, or whatever way you want to say it, is just wrong. And many of you have realized it. Which is why it’s getting better.

Still, there’s a whole lot more of you to come along to your senses and realize that the runts of the human litter are no threat to the brood. And it behooves you to figure out a morality – a coddling, if you will – to teach your runts how to behave better. So that we might. Though we do pretty good on our own. And no gay man fired from his job ever went back and shot up the work place. No gay man ever went against his tormentors with a gun. No, because you teach us we would be better off dead, so we kill ourselves. Though not as many as you perhaps would like. Such a fine thing to teach for family and Christian values – young runt, kill thyself for the good of humanity. But that is what you teach, all in your own way.

And then you spit upon the boy and say, look, see, he’s killed himself because he’s a demented queer. Look at the things you say. Listen to your words. This is what you are teaching all the young gay men. This is what you are teaching your runts. And few come to our defense, few will coddle us, for that somehow is evil too. If one will go to Hell for saying something nice about a gay runt, well, then that doesn’t give the gay runt much confidence for his future, now does it? Still, we survive.

And that’s what seems to aggravate the most strident against us. It’s our our fortitude. Our ability to overcome your desire for our self destruction. Our ability to become peaceful productive citizens of a great Republic. This you think is destroying it. You believe, God knows why, that our contribution by our existence it detrimental to the whole. But runts can do no harm. The lions take care of that, right?

And worse, you lay all your social ills and your violence and depravity and more at the feet of the modicum of civil acceptance we managed to win by defending our existence as runts. Justice Scalia seems quite sure that not having a law to arrest us for being runts is the downfall of the Republic. That’s how fearful of we gay runts he is.

And among the worse things you say and teach is that only the repression and continued scorn and despising of us gay runts of your litter is the only way that civilization will survive. This sears our souls. You created us – and you blame us for your creation. We are you runts and you blame us for being your runts. That is not Christian, it is not Moral, it is not Values, it is not Family, it is not Rational, it is not American.

And many of you even condemn us runts for having the gumption to defend ourselves.

And as the prey of this society, I can only pray: Forgive them Lord, they know not what they do. And as all gay folks do, I turn the other cheek and pray for an opening of your hearts and minds. We are you runts. And we are not evil. And we do no harm. For we are only the Pink Sheep of the Flock of God.

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