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6:41 am EDT 43°F (6°C) in South Rockwood, MI
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Another month has gone by without an update here. At least it’s spring here now, so I don’t have to bitch about how much winter fucking sucks around here any more — well, at least until December. That said, it has been a pretty shitty April here, but that’s relative; I’ll take a shitty April over a shitty January any day.
A couple hours ago, while making dinner, I had another one of those moments where the light bulb really comes on, so to speak. In past weeks, as the legislature in Vermont and the Iowa Supreme Court have come to see the unconstitutionality and un-American-ness of denying the civil and legal rights of marriage to same-sex couples, and taken action to rectify that injustice, so-called “fundamentalist ‘Christians’” have greatly ramped up their efforts to slander and dehumanize God’s beloved gay and lesbian children. Central to these efforts has been the continued pushing of the lie that homosexuality is a “lifestyle” which is “chosen,” as seen in their use of talking points like “volitional homosexual conduct.”
I suppose the argument could be made that there are two different views about what exactly defines human sexuality and sexual orientation. I admit that the phrasing I am about to use is a bit crude, but it is extremely succinct and really drives the point home. The question we face here is, is sexual orientation defined by what you are, or who you do?
I offer the following challenge to my single straight male readership that will prove my point. (I would prefer that married men not take me up on this, as, contrary to what “Christians” would tell you, I actually do value marital vows.) I challenge you to dump your girlfriend for, let’s say, two months, and make an attempt at pursuing a same-sex romantic relationship. I further challenge you to have sex with a man at least once, and preferably on a regular basis, during this time period. Now think about it, at the end of those 60 days, what will you be: gay or straight?
If you actually are straight, you’re going to struggle to feel any real sexual attraction to men during those two months, if not find it completely impossible. Your attraction to women isn’t going to go anywhere, and will be just as strong and vibrant as it always was at the end of the 60 days. You might come to find out that many gay men can do a better job of physically pleasuring you, simply because they have the same “equipment” you do and know what works for them, but you’re not actually going to feel attracted to them. You know as well as I do, when you think about it, that this is true.
Yet, so-called “Christians” would go on non-stop about how you had “fallen victim to the ‘homosexual agenda’” or some such claptrap. In their view, you have essentially become gay for those two months, your actual feelings and attractions notwithstanding. They would no doubt parade you around as a so-called “ex-gay” at the end of those two months, and use you as a cudgel with which to bash gays. But you know, in your heart of hearts, that you never were gay during those 60 days. You know that straight is “what you are,” not just “who you do” before and after my 60-day challenge.
It becomes clear, with any sort of real analysis, that the “what you are” view of sexual orientation is based in truth, and the “who you do” view held by so-called “Christians” is based in bigotry and hatred. It is even more shocking, then, when these same so-called “Christians” attempt to deflect this perfectly valid calling-out of their bullshit by projecting their intolerance and hatred onto pro-gay groups!
As many of you may already know, the annual Day of Silence was held in thousands of schools all across America last week. So-called “Christians” came out with their same old tired and predictably false rhetoric about how the Gay, Lesbian, and Straight Education Network (GLSEN) is “indoctrinating children into a ‘homosexual lifestyle’” through the Day of Silence. One of the accusations made by “Christians” is that GLSEN is somehow seeking to convince young people that even one same-sex thought makes them totally, permanently, and irretrievably gay. Tell me, doesn’t that sound like a “who you do” view of human sexuality — the totally incorrect view that I have already proven is held not by gays, but instead by so-called “Christians”? Does that furthermore not sound like projection on the part of so-called “Christians”?
I suppose that when you think about it, all of the anti-gay bigotry exhibited by so-called “Christians” makes sense in light of their illogical “who you do” view of sexual orientation. I don’t think that anybody would argue that who you do is a choice — I mean, if I really wanted to, I could screw women left and right. Who I do doesn’t prove anything to anybody who operates under the rules of logic, but in the parallel universe of so-called “Christians,” it somehow “proves” that I’m “choosing” to be gay.
From there, it’s no huge leap to call the innate trait of homosexuality a mere “lifestyle,” and once convinced that it’s merely a “lifestyle choice” instead of the 24/7/365 state of being it actually is, it’s quite easy to believe that we should be denied more than 1,500 legal and civil rights in America — and quite frankly, any claim to equal humanity and dignity. Truly, this “who you do” view of human sexuality is at the root of all the evil perpetrated by so-called “Christians” upon gays.
In our dealings with people, we must always make it clear that being gay or lesbian is what you are, not merely something you do. We are gay and lesbian all the time, not just when we’re going to Pride, having a couple drinks at the bars, or having sex. Perhaps the so-called “Christians” can never be reached — they do, after all, have the tendency to stick their fingers in their ears when confronted with facts that shatter their pastors’ talking points — but if we work hard enough at propagating the truth that human sexuality is defined by what you are, we will eventually render the “Christian” “who you do” view the belief of a tiny minority.
All right, I’m off to bed. Three more nights of work lie ahead of me, before I go across the state to Grand Rapids this weekend for history’s first ever all-gay road enthusiast meet. Stay tuned to my Flickr site for some pictures from that.