On intemperate language by Gay folks.
In the debate over Chick-fil-a’s folly of donating money to groups such as Exodus International (so much for Gays are an American problem, if they need be “international,” eh?) – a group so cocksure of their abilities that they admit to a failure rate of 99.99% of ever having changed a gay man to a straight man; that they don’t aspire to work on Lesbians does need further examination, but now is neither time nor place – there is much nastiness flung by many people. It seems that some gay folks, well gay men, mostly, I guess – I can’t keep track of every utterance by every gay person in the nation, and lesbians and gay men don’t tend to comment on the same sites – have used foul language, nastiness, aspersions, and quick mal mots to castigate Chick-fil-a.
Well, we live in a coarse culture of sound bites. I’m opposed to this, believing the English language is sufficiently endowed with words of opprobrium without resort to the “seven bad words you can’t say on TV” (except if you have cable, which everyone does, but me, apparently,) and to other more base constructions. I cannot police the words of others; it’s beyond my scope and ability. But one should not blame “homosexuals,” so much as one should blame “Person A,” and “Person B.” After all, I don’t see much beyond “Liberals are fouled mouthed,” and I don’t see “heterosexuals are foul mouthed.”
Yes, it is true, some gay blogs are filled with a nastiness I find disconcerting. I (did) make note of this often, on those blogs. I say things like “Don’t call Sarah Palin a douchebag if you are not willing to hear her thoughts, for then you are simply screaming at each other, and doing exactly what you claim she is wrong for doing. And whether you like it or not, we need her as a friend, not an enemy.” I have been roundly castigated and harangued for stating the obvious: If Sarah Palin would say, “Oh, leave those people be,” she would do more for us than any liberal ever could.
And no gay man ever won friends or influenced people by being nasty. It is, indeed, incumbent upon us, alas, (though not really, we just tend to be more decent, I think,) to be ever the more polite in our outrage at the malicious things said about us. For when people like Dan Cathy of Chick-fil-a says we are “the end of the nation” or such, or “we mock God” and the like, he’s being only more erudite in his nastiness, and more delusional in his lack of factual knowledge than the most profane abuser of his beliefs. I don’t question his “right” to be a moron, I wonder about his moronic statements, ’tis all. I wish gay men would pull apart his logic and tomfoolery rather than just say “He’s an idiot.” Or worse. But I cannot make these people drink the water to which I seek to lead them. Though several gay sites are rather just as erudite as he: www.goodasyou.org, www.truthwinsout.org and www.boxturtlebulletin.com as the finest examples. Yet, these three sites are pretty much economically and legally obtuse too, if they mention the subjects at all.
I find that I cannot read any more blogs like “Joe, my God,” who’s comments sections would make some sailors blush. It does not help our cause to simply shout invective at our opponents – for our opponents must become our friends, or this confounded “debate” will never end. And Joe himself is not behind his commentators, but seems to lead the way. I also find that Joe is economically illiterate, and driven by some “I know best, you had better listen,” mentality, which closes off all discussion on an issue by a “holier than thou,” attitude, which he then lambastes many a fundamentalist for holding. He’s, frankly, as guilty as they are. So horrendous do I find the site that I won’t link to it.
I find that a website www.izzo.com is filled with very interesting tidbits from TV – a medium I eschew – that I would never see without the young man’s apparently limitless time in watching the “idiot box.” Well, we live in a TV-full world. I try to escape it, I cannot. Though I comment there somewhat regularly and castigate him, publicly and privately, “Watch the language. Stop with the foul mouthed nonsense and write cogently.” He’s forever misspelling words, too, that annoys me. He’s stated that he is a “feisty Italian.” Well, so what? Of late he’s cooled down a bit on the language; perhaps I’ve influenced the young man. I don’t know, he hasn’t said. But so what one is feisty? Does that mean you have to use all seven bad words on a regular basis to try to make some point? I think not.
Then there is www.queerty.com – which covers some political stuff and some cultural stuff. But I’ve never seen them discuss the absurdities of the IRS code. Nor have they looked much at the ever increasing laws which must perforce limit liberty – more law always equals less liberty. They use “douchebag” with alarming frequency in their columns, commentators are just as bad. I have asked them not to, I am not listened to. However, unbeknownst to our detractors, many of whom seem to think that “homosexuals” all think alike, and that there is this lockstep following of the “homosexual lobby,” as they themselves decry “Group think,” they lump us in a group, there is a vigorous debate within the comments on whether the Democrats are for us or against us, or just plain politically calculating. As also there is great debate as to whether Republicans are for us or against us, or merely “evolving” on the issue, as our president so waffled. Now he’s all for letting the states decide, which most have, so he’s “against” now, what he accepts, and he’s “for” what he will not change. Meanwhile, our gay “leaders” are mostly dismissed as incompetent boobs.
Yes, the nation has been politically calculating and evolving on the issue of its gay citizens since George Washington said, more or less (it was not recorded verbatim,) “What do I care if Baron von Steuben is a sodomite? He’s a great general.” Washington ignored many a call to rid the ranks of “sodomites.” He was fighting the King of England, and for a nascent nation, he had no time for little matters of no consequence. And indeed, there was barely an anti-gay law until the Victorian era. The nation survived well without a “sodomy” law until the late 1800s. And it was Bill Clinton in 1978 who pushed through Arkansas’s first such law, when he had to become attorney general after he lost his first bid for reelection to governor. Little known seems to be the reality that ol’ Slick Willy was governor, lost, and came back strong after getting the “sodomy” statute passed. Oh well, so much for history, eh? And instead of Republicans and conservatives pointing out the hypocrisy of Democrats on the issue, they accuse the Democrats of falling under the “evil” of the “homosexual lobby.” Well, why don’t we just chase away the gay voters? I tell my friend, “Vote Libertarian!” They tell me I’m wasting my vote.
There are gay sites that say they are conservative, which lash out at liberal gay sites. There are liberal gay sites that lash out at conservative gay sites. Quite a debate, with barbs, just like among the heteros, amazingly enough. But while the liberal and conservative natures of those websites revolves more around political correctness, “hate crimes” and the worthiness of any such laws, and the economy and taxes, unemployment and government directives, I note this: conservative gay websites spend more time on matters important to all Americans, like economy, taxes, etc, and the liberal gay websites concentrate more on our battles with the fundamentalist Christians which claim they are waging a “culture war” against us. They are “Liberal” only in being against modern-Republican anti-gayness – but they are silent on most other “Liberal” causes, and most other Republican causes as well.
But both are together in saying: “Stop this attack upon us.” They just do it a bit differently. Of course, only heterosexuals of the nastiest sort ever bother to read gay blogs. They misquote liberally from them what they don’t like, and ignore what they obviously must like. Perhaps it unnerves them to hear gay folks quote the Bible on our side. They call us “false Christians” and they call Christians who like us “sin-affirming apostates.” One should read AFTAH’s website about how they despise Christians who will say anything nice about gays. The pope is currently mad at Episcopalians for coming round to our side. He and his predecessors have been mad at the Church of England since Henry VIII, now they just found a new reason to add to their old ones.
However, of the hundreds if not thousands of gay men I have spoken to in the past, oh, 35 years, I find the great majority, upwards of 90%, to be clueless, even uncaring, about economics. I find that most gay men don’t think about larger issues, say like, foreign policy, or the nature of the US federal budget, but concentrate more on defending gay folks from the scurrilous charges and falsehoods uttered by those who want us gone from this earth. I think this is why we are called “whiny” and “obsessed.” Well, I dare say that self-preservation and self-defense are a bit more important than the price supports for sugar or the tax rates on corporations. And I dare say, too, while intemperate language is not nice, something about calling for the incarceration or even the death of gay folks in general is a bit more nasty, even if not a “bad” word is used, than calling those who call for such measures “douchebag.” “Death to homosexuals” is not nice, no matter how one excuses it as “free speech” or as “my belief” or “God says,” and such. Gay men don’t call for the death or incarceration of fundamentalists, we ask only that they keep it to their pulpits and otherwise leave us alone.
In my discussions with my friends I’ve noticed this, they are “liberal” and “Democrats” when it comes to the spurious protestations of the Democratic Party to be “for” us (despite Bill Clinton signing DOMA and DADT to which he might have affixed a veto even if overridden, despite African-American preachers and their followers to be very against gay anything, despite the fact that it was the Democratically run states of the Old South which kept their “sodomy” and “Crimes against nature” statutes on the books and fought all the way to the Supreme Court to keep their unenforced laws on the books while collecting taxes galore from gay bars in their states, ad infinitum, for there is a book to be written yet: “How Democrats are against gay folks.” The title would not be well received, I’m sure, but the substance should make gay folks think, for sure.) – but when one scratches the surface of these gay “liberals” one finds some very “conservative” economic positions. For instance, most gay men are opposed to being taxed for the privilege of being excoriated by our own government. Sounds and looks “conservative” to me. Remove the gayness from the equation and most gay guys sound like TEA Party patriots. Why, we even demanded the right to defend the nation against our enemies!
Why, counter intuitively, most gay men are very TEA Party in being against government involvement in our lives, in wanting our right to be left alone enshrined in law if need be, in wanting freedom of action, speech, religion, etc etc. I would think that wanting to get married is a “conservative” value – and gay folks clamor for marriage far more than say, Newt Gingrich and the rest of the vast numbers of divorced, adulterous and shacking up heterosexuals. The only difference is that TEA Party people tend to be heterosexuals with a less than good understanding of the fervor of gay folks to be free from government, while gay folks tend to think that all TEA Party people are extremist fundamentalists. The gay folks learn this from the TV media – a medium which many gays avidly watch, and which the TEA Party points out media hypocrisy. And well, the TV media are hypocrites and not gay friendly at all, unless it gets votes for the socialist program.
But then again, many a heterosexual “Liberal” is also imbued with the mush of the networks, and yet no one attacks them for their heterosexuality. It seems many in this nation are of the bizarre belief that there is a “gay” position on any given law, as if it rises up innately in our gayness itself. And so “homosexuals” are attacked, even if a gay man agrees completely with a conservative on every other issue.
And in this misunderstanding between the two groups – as wobbly and without solid foundation as they both are, without real leaders so much as small groups – much intemperate language is used by both. Oh, this I know from my own sashaying around TEA Party websites and Conservative and Republican websites, where often I am the only (well, pretty much always the only,) gay person. I certainly don’t see Log Cabin Republicans doing much. Nor liberal gays trying to engage any opponent in direct and decent conversation. Still, the invective heaped upon me is frightening (somewhat) in its ferocity. “Die,” “Go to hell” “Get AIDS” and the like, and the seven bad words too, so much so that I wonder about both the sanity of those who write the comments, and too their commitment to liberty.
One cannot be “for” liberty while calling for the incarceration and elimination of those you don’t like or disagree with. One cannot be “for” religious liberty while demanding others to conform to your religious beliefs. Yes, we get it, some fundamentalists don’t want us to join their religion. We do not, and thus blamed for joining and not joining. Damned if we do, damned if we don’t. The mush abounds.
In my wanderings around the internet, and of late much reduced, I never use curse words, I never call anyone names, I never question anyone’s faith or religion – I only challenge their logic, their reason and their respect for Liberty for All. Heterosexuals are as guilty as gay folks in this nonsense. This political mudslinging. I can’t for the life of me understand someone who proclaims their right to be left alone by government then calling for my government to come full blast at me in a police state to rid me from the streets. I point this out. I feel I have made many think more about what they say. Surely I have received many nice personal emails, and emails from some rather unlikely sources, like Republican party operatives and stalwarts.
I found recently some people wondering why gay folks don’t call for a boycott of OPEC like they have for Chick-fil-a. Well, those people who say this are uninformed. Gay folks are quite vocal and upset about what the Muslim world often does to gay folks. But heterosexuals don’t know this because 1) they don’t read gay blogs, and 2) the mush-media refuses to cover the story. I can’t help it if many a heterosexual refuses to explore gay thinking. The many of them seem quite cocksure about what “gay people think.” They are so sure of their belief that all gays think alike, that we are all against this or that, a danger to society and on and on, that they don’t see our outrage at the treatment of gays in other countries. None are so blind as those who will not see.
It’s like with the “Occupy” movement – a dispirited group of malcontents against everything, but not able to explain it beyond “I’m against it” – some Liberal heterosexuals are quite sure that this is some huge “political” movement. And many gay men and liberals (there’s a difference, like I said,) laugh at the TEA Party marches. When I point out that the “Occupy” movement are so tiny as to be laughable, and the TEA Party marches while larger are much limited, and quite new, and apparently quite over for the moment, yet the gay political movement is the only worldwide 40 year long continuous series of protest marches – the largest in mankind’s history. Oh yes, 40 years of peaceful protest marches. The TEA Party prides itself on lack of violence while castigating Occupy on their violence – and when I compare gay marches to TEA Party marches, well, are nasty words slung at me! By some.
Still, the only violence at gay marches is when the local police and crazed religious fanatics come down to cause trouble. Now all over the globe, every continent but the frozen one, and in Teheran and Cairo and Moscow and Beijing, too. We gays, just everywhere in peaceful protest, oh well. Both the TEA Party and the Occupy movements might have a thing to learn about how to march peacefully with millions of people in quite trying circumstances with a hostile press and often hostile governments and certainly hostile religious nuts against you. But we do it, we continue. We shall not stop. You’d have to shoot us all, as some have recommended, in the name of “Peace” “God” and “Country” and “Liberty” “Rights” and “Freedom.” Yes, nothing hypocritical about calling for the violent elimination of one’s political opponents while preaching peace and liberty, no.
Still, in the defense of gay folks against the nastiness hurled at us, it is true, many gays use intemperate language. Well, as Barry Goldwater said: Extremism in the defense of Liberty is no vice. Why exactly we should have to listen to endless calls for our abject surrender to others’ beliefs we don’t know. No one can explain this other than “Our God says.” Yes, well, get a better God. Why we should have to listen politely to “Gays destroy families,” “attack civilization” “wreck nations” are “sick,” “evil” and worse – all accompanied by demands for us to find the women of your dreams (and not ours) or shush and go back to the closet, or shush, we heteros will decide, you gays can’t say a word – I dare say, provoke a man enough and he’ll punch you in the nose. It’s well covered by the “Fighting Words” doctrine of the Supreme Court.
And while I do write extensively on these matters, I often see much commentary by both liberals and conservatives: Don’t make everything so complex, speak in sound bites. And then I’m told I should reduce my thoughts to one phrase that will fit on the 10 o’clock news. Well, yes, yes I can. I can indeed reduce my answer to the legions of people against gay existence: NUTS! On the other hand, the minute the gay issue is removed from the public discussion you’d be amazed at how quick you’d never really hear of gay folks again. Keep it in the public eye, we shall exercise our rights to speak up, too.
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