Gay Misinformation Package for Family Values

Through www.goodasyou.org I found an “emailable” information package by the Iowa Family Values Institute, or someone – it’s hard to tell, since all these groups are interlaced with each other and they have similar names. For instance, what is the difference between the Family Research Council and the Family Research Institute I have yet to discern, other than that they are misnamed, and should be called the Gay Research Council, since that’s all they research. Though they do cross reference each other to bolster their claims that “many groups” are opposed to the “radical homosexuals.” Though if there is a “homosexual” who is NOT “radical” or “militant” by these folks reckoning I never heard of one. They certainly never talk about such people, and all references to gay folks is always modified by “radical” and “militant;” maybe those are the only gay folks they study. For the information package is supposedly about gay people, um, no, Radical Homosexuals and our nefarious “Agenda.”

But it is some strange agglomeration of self-selected information, and stuff just made up, and information that is taken out of context, and information that is simply about one thing and is applied to gays, and stuff so illogical on the face of it is hard to comprehend how anyone can listen to the mush and not say “What on earth?” On and on it goes, through the misinformation package, the against-gay folks stuff. Some of the most astounding stuff I’ve seen in a long time. Now that I’m beginning to research the whole thing I can’t help but wonder if these people are rational. It’s going to take me a while.

And I worry that many otherwise sane politicians are comporting themselves with these groups to somehow save the family from gay people. Our mere existence is apparently the attack upon families. Nothing we really do attacks families, at least not that can be proven beyond we exist and therefore are a threat. Presumably we’re even members of our own families, but I’m not sure these groups agree with that. They think we’re “extra-family” or “not part of” family or something.

They’re also sure we’re against religion, again, merely because they say so and for no other reason. And we don’t attack religion per se (indeed, Americans for the truth about homosexuality is quite clear that that there are a plethora of “sin-accepting” and “sin-endorsing” (now suspect I suppose) Christian groups affirming the reality that gay people are just who we say we are. But they’re sure we’re against families, and against religion and stop just shy of saying we’re against the nation, as traitors perhaps, but we are against civilization itself because … well, again, they don’t quite say why. At least not in any coherent manner. Existence is sufficient for the charge. Still, oy vey, the misinformation!

For instance, they compare gay people to second hand smoke, as if by being near a gay person, I suppose, one can catch it, just like by inhaling second hand cigarette smoke one can get cancer, though they don’t say this. But why the comparison? Beats me, just makes us sound bad, I guess. And they bring up cancer rates to show that gay people die younger than even cancer sufferers.

Indeed, one of the most astounding bits of information is a chart which purports to show that straight folks’ life expectancy is 75 years, people who smoke have a life expectancy of 65 years, and gay people have a life expectancy without AIDS or HIV of just a mere 41 years of age, and 39 with HIV. And I’m balled over in wonderment. Where could they come up with such a number? Oh, they counted obituaries in gay papers in a few major cities during the 1980s and came to their remarkable conclusions. Then one Michael Bates, well represented in the package with his own letter, says the methodology is not good, but he believes it anyway – because it must be true. I think. It’s so addled, his language, it shall take me a while to figure it out.

I’m 52 years old, and so I suppose I’m now 11 years beyond my life expectancy. My friend the old World War II vet is months shy of his 89th birthday, so way beyond. But more to the point, obviously these intrepid researchers of the culture wars have never heard of a “Wrinkle Room.”

You probably haven’t either. A Wrinkle Room is a gay bar with patrons who are, on average, over 55 years of age. Julius in NYC is one, and the Bunkhouse in Phoenix is another, and the Cubby Hole in Wilton Manors Florida, and the Queens Pub, Cutters and Golden Lantern in New Orleans. I could go on, and on, and on, all over the nation. These bars are chock full of gay men who are way past their expiration date, by the misinformation presented. Indeed, all the gay bars I ever been to have a multitude of patrons who are well past the 41 year old life expectancy. And because I am 52, the vast majority of my gay friends are similar in age to me – and we’re way past our expiration date.

So I wonder what is the secret to our longevity in light of this extraordinary claim? Could it be, um, the claim is balderdash? Probably. And as for gay men with HIV all dying before they’re 39, well, then, that too is mush, for the biggest problem facing the HIV provider system is the number of gay men who are living just fine with HIV and their drug regimen well past 50 and do not show any signs of succumbing to anything.

But even if gay men are all dying, on average, at 41 – by what cause? The information package brings up cancer rates. Which cancers it doesn’t say. But are gay men really subject to higher cancer rates than the general population? Wouldn’t the CDC have a record of this? I can’t find one yet. Or are we dying of heart troubles? Would the NIH have something on this? Nope. Or maybe our spleens give out or something. Again, they don’t say, they just give the raw age. In fact, when one internet searches for the information what one gets is all the No Gays groups referencing each other to say, “See, other people say so to.” But nothing official, like the government or something. (Though that could be because the Census and every other part of the government is prohibited from asking anything about gay people, lest the question itself promote the thing. Still, suppose it’s true?

Well, I have long contended that gay men are the runts of the litter of any family. Could it be then that this data, this finding, this idea that gay men die so young, just bolsters my contention that we’re the runts? And are the premature deaths because of some physical reality of gay people that no science has ever discovered yet? Like weak hearts, or susceptibility to cancers? Are our deaths at such a young age for modern society because we’re somehow physically defective? Wouldn’t that be us, um, being natural as all get all? I mean, if we’re subject to divers death causing factors based on our mere gayness isn’t then being gay a perfectly fine natural thing? Oh no, that’s not what they say. It’s a choice of some sort, though they don’t say how. But how can choosing to be gay then open one up to divers diseases that bring about such death? Oh yah, it’s the “lifestyle.” But that too they don’t define, other than, if one is gay one has a gay lifestyle. But if we’re naturally disposed to this death grip at a young age, would that automatically change if we changed to fine heterosexuals? This too they don’t say. And one would think, after expending such enormous amounts of time to prepare this information they would simply say – change and grow old! But this they don’t do.

In fact, in other misinformation, provided by something called NARTH – a pro-change anti-gay group, they admit not only that orientation is virtually impossible to change, they claim it’s caused by a natural “temperment” and by some inability of gay boys to bond to our fathers (and I thought it was momma’s fault all along! Or so I was told.) and thus we grow up craving gay sex. We hang around with women too much during the toilet training years – 2 to 4 – and thus this is why we’re gay. NARTH helpfully says that not all guys with weak father-son relationships are gay, and not all gay men have weak father-son relationships – but still, this lack of good relationships with our fathers is probably what makes us gay – so long as we’re born with the right temperment to make it all come together. The head reals at the comparison to the Medieval wheels within wheels and subwheels and superwheels where in which all the celestial bodies were in orbit around the earth, and the more wrinkles they found in the structure the more wheels big and small they put in so that the idea still worked, even if it had nothing to do with reality.

But this misinformation package is what I’ll be looking at this week, and from time to time. It’s too exciting a pile of mush to ignore. I would ignore it, as I would the ravings of a madman, but alas, far too many politicians are getting this package.

Still, this package may well backfire on the no-gays (their not anti-gay, they want no gays) groups. For some politicians, worried about this “reality” will perhaps wonder what on earth they’re going to do about all the resources and ramifications involved in so many gay men dying so young. Surely public policy, surely compassion, surely tax dollars, are involved in this epidemic of dying gay men, no? I mean, wouldn’t someone want to see if it’s really true and what to do about it? One would think that the folks in Congress would want to spend a few billion to figure out how to stop all the gay folks from even being born so we don’t impact on the public with our early deaths. Especially now with all the health care in the government’s hands. Or maybe they don’t give a damn if we allegedly die young, you know, we’re a sort of a self-correcting problem. I don’t know.

But somehow, if we do die young (As only the good do, it’s said) why then is there this great worry about according gay people a modicum of civil decency? Surely we should be allowed to at least be happy in our short lives, no? Everyone else with a dread condition who is going to his or her maker soon is accorded a trip to Disney World or some such. Yet gay men are only accorded public condemnation. And that hardly seems fair, now does it? Nope.

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