America: Teach us to be better gay people

America: Teach us to be better gay people

There is no doubt that there is a moral issue with gay people. The morality is not in our gayness, however. No, that’s natural. It’s in how we express it. It’s in how we live our lives. It’s especially in how you all tell us we should live our lives. You teach us the way we should comport ourselves. I know you don’t think so, but you do. We have told you now for decades: we are gay. We have told you too: you are not. Those who are, are. Those who are not, are not. That’s it. It’s like autism, or Aspergers, or any other “birth defect.” Particularly those that affect boys. And face it, it’s gay boys, gay guys, gay men, whom pose the biggest problem to this society. Lesbians are oh so much more accepted; do not deny this reality. I will not address the ladies, or the bisexuals, or the transgendered (whom I truly don’t understand.) I will address only us “Exclusive male homosexuals,” as we are so charitably called by so many.

Still, those who who have “it,” have it, those who do not, do not. Nothing on God’s Green & Blue Earth is going to change this reality. And then you spend endless hours telling us how we’re going to be depressed, suicidal, addictive personalities, sex fiends, evil, threatening, possible child molesters, family haters, society attackers, and civilization killers and Lord knows what else. This is what you teach us we are. We prove you wrong, and you teach it still. We beg you to stop teaching this to the kids who will grow up gay; you insist there’s a moral, religious, constitutional, medical right to keep condemning us. It serves no purpose but to make you feel better, I guess; and for us to fight back more tenaciously with the most benign “war” ever waged. One of gentle persuasion, reason, logic, and even begging, along with a simple demonstration of reality to calm your ragged nerves on the issue.

OK, so gayness is a birth defect. I don’t mind saying it. I’m not sure most gay men would express it like that; some might even yell at me. But deep down, we all know something didn’t quite turn out the way the people around us expected it too. We are not unaware of this. We have all had the conversations explaining ourselves to those who know us. I’ve had this conversation with you all. And we have to have it with every single blessed one of you who comes to know we are gay. It is a constant conversation in our lives. You only have it once or twice. We don’t like it. It’s so boring, so predicable, so banal, and yet, we’re forced into it because of your curiosity. And there are so many of you, and so few of us. Weirdly, though you don’t recognize this – each of you has a different opinion on the matter. Some overlap, sure, but most of you will have completely different conclusions on why we’re gay, and what’s to be done about it. If you discussed it amongst yourselves, and you should, you will find that you actually contradict each other; but each is sure they themselves is correct.

But I think too, that America is very curious about gay people. We are exotic, aren’t we? Sometimes the curiosity is benign, sometimes more malicious. Sometimes it’s way too personal, or demanding. Oh, it ranges over every possible combination of belief and political position on the issue. You each have yours, which are so diverse, so spread out, that we don’t know what will hit us. But don’t worry, we’re versed in all of it. For none of what you say really matters; it is belief. What matters is what we tell you; this is reality. It’s simple, we’re gay, you’re not. This is important for you to grasp. Once you do, now what?

Right now the nation is divided on either benignly ignoring us – or condemning us into submission. New polling data show that 65% of the nation is concerned with the economy and jobs. The other 35% either like the destruction of both or are oblivious, I don’t know. And yet, only 5% of heterosexuals are worried about gay marriage. And those people are simply crazy. The last 5% of the nation truly implacably opposed to us to the degree that they think we present a threat to the nation, its families, its values, its society and the civilization in which it all resides is simply crazy. Maybe they’re even 10% or 20% and are under reported, maybe so. But, really, listen to them rational America. Listen. They want us gone. The Family Research Council leads a coalition of groups who want us gone, by any means. They don’t care how, or by whom. Cure, by ourselves or forced by them, incarceration, exportation, or even execution; they mention all of these. At is a daily compendium of the bizarre statements of this 5%.

I suggest you acquaint yourselves with this website. It has no polemics. It’s just a daily gathering of the quotations, statements and pronouncements of the bizarre, irrational, ludicrous, duplicitous, tortuous, convoluted, contorted, malicious, nasty and delusion world of the implacably anti-gay world. They are for NO GAYS; and we have no where to go. They will not eliminate us; so what now?

And you know what I would like you to do, my dear people? Stop it. Stop this nonsense. This is ruinous to us, especially to our youth, who are oddly your youth. We come from some families, after all, don’t we? We have begged and pleaded for moral support in being the best people we can be. We have asked for moral guidance to build relationships. We need your help to get behind the picket fence in wedded bliss. We cannot do this alone. Moral guidance is truly a societal thing. Moral guidance, the superstructure on which civilization rests, deals with the reality of people. Condemning us is not moral guidance. Condemning us is wrecking us.

But there’s a clear generational difference. Those of us 50 and older had one gay existence; we survived it, and led the way for the next generation. Those 50 and to 30 had another; they are the vanguard of our movement into mere “birth defect” and no longer “destroyer of all that’s holy and good.” And now, gloriously, those under 30 have it so much better. Oh, I see it. Down at the bar there’s so many more couples than ever before; it brings a tear to my eye. I’m not bitter, no. Just wistful. Still, that is the point of the “It’s Getting Better” campaign. That’s the point of the “No Bullying” campaigns. It’s all about building a better future for young gay men. They will come of age. Of that there is no doubt. Why are so many so glib still in condemning them? That’s what I can’t figure out. I never could; I still can’t.

But the issue now for America is this: how will you help make life better for the gay men in your midst? How will you help us to a monogamous relationship? How will you help us to achieve the American dream of a home and a yard, and a good job and a happy future, to pursue happiness? Those of us over 50 couldn’t pursue happiness – we had to pursue legality first. We had to pursue the end of the torrent of negativism against us. We had to prove we were merely a “birth defect,” and nothing more or less. We gay men are different, true. We’re not going to birth no babies. We don’t want to. It’s out of our league. Perhaps at most, some few of us will adopt a few whom no one else wants. But this is what you have. Just like you have autistic kids. You’re not going to condemn them out of autism; you will not condemn us out of gayness.

You can only help us be the best we can be. That’s what great Americans have always done, rose to a challenge of great proportions, and solved it. The gay “challenge” is still big. And it’s a wide open frontier. One still awaiting a real American achiever to come up with a way to make it as best as it can be for us. I cannot provide the answer. But I know in which direction it lies: Somewhere where us gay folks are simply accepted and ignored, celebrated by those who know us, and given latitude by those who don’t. Just like the rest of you. For ultimately, we are just like the rest of you – American citizens and human beings. And not a whit less. Stop the condemnation, it’s to no good use. Help us in making sure 10 year old gay boys grow up to be fine young gay men. That is what we have been asking for decades now. That is why I have waded in among you all. I seek your help.





  1. ted

    I am not defective. I am gay. There is a purpose to my being so. Perhaps my function is to proffer myself more boldly in war in defense of a lover near, perhaps it is to make me available to care for other people’s children. Perhaps it is to ensure that I have free time available to create and do the work that cannot be done when a wife and family needs tending to. Perhaps it is to allow some creative bent to flower and blossom, maybe it is to give diversity and interest to a world of sameness. Maybe God was mad at the world and wanted to shake it up. Maybe he wanted an inferior class to be lorded over by another – which is superior is yet to be seen. But I am not defective. Call it a birth difference if you will – for surely I am different. I know in my heart that I was meant to be different – and I am not good father material in the sense of raising one brood. I do a lot of mentoring though. Raising other people’s kids. Of all ages. But I am not defective any more than a left handed person is, or blue eyes, or brown hair.

  2. ted

    Jim – why not an article on how gays are teaching Americans to be better people?

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