The Homophobic Homosexual

August 30, 2010

We all think we live in an enlightened age in this, the beginning of the second decade of the new millennium. After all, it was just two generations ago that gay bars were being raided and individuals – citizens of the United States – were thrown into jail simply because they were gay. Now, the fact gay marriage is even being debated in state houses across the country is an achievement, and a handful of progressive states have actually “sealed the deal.” I firmly believe that, with the new members to the Supreme Court, it may only be a matter of time before marriage becomes our Constitutional right. After all, in 1973, in Roe vs. Wade, the Supreme Court ruled that women had right to choose their destiny, and largely based its historic decision on one phrase in the Constitution: “the pursuit of happiness.” Is the “pursuit of happiness” by possibly one tenth of the U.S. population any less worthy?

Having said that, we also are painfully aware that homophobia in this predominantly heterosexual society is still alive and well. While Congress and the Armed Services “study” the issue infinitum, thousands of highly qualified, highly skilled service men and women are being forced to resign in disgrace because of their sexual orientation. Twenty nine states, largely as the result of direct referendums by their constituents, have banned same-sex unions; viscous hate crimes continue, many unreported or not fully prosecuted; and every day those of us who are homosexual are exposed to snickering innuendos in the media, television, and movies, or around the water cooler.

Ah, but there is another, more insidious discrimination going on around us, one the gay media and our sub-culture have only skirted with, at best: homophobia within our own ranks, i.e., the homophobic homosexual. For the purposes of this essay, I am focusing mostly on gay males, though the problem also exists, abet to a lesser degree, among female gays as well.

The first category of homophobia within our own demographics is the homosexual in denial. They can be high school or college age students, single adults, even married men and women with offspring. They are extremely conflicted in accepting their sexuality, due to deeply personal, often religious reasons, and their inability and refusal to identify with a sub-culture which appears to overemphasize physicality and, some would argue, hedonism. Consequently, the homosexual in denial will remain silent when the subject of homosexuality arises among family, friends or co-workers, and many actually engage in anti-gay rhetoric as a way of rejecting or masking their own deep seated fears about themselves. Sadly, among them are the gay bashers who act out their frustrations regarding their conflicted sexuality by victimizing the vulnerable. (Individuals comfortable in their own sexuality, while not necessarily endorsing or condoning another’s, truly don’t care what other people do in the bedroom as long as it does not adversely affect them.)

I have a friend who, at 65, is divorcing his wife after 27 years of marriage and two children to lead an openly gay lifestyle. Yet when I asked him if he had had any attraction to men when he was younger, he is adamant about his conviction that he did not “become” gay until his late 50’s, something I find hard to accept in light of the growing evidence that sexual orientation has genetic roots.

Next there are the homosexuals who lead active sex lives with other men, be it clandestine encounters or long term relationships, but who remain “in the closet” to family, friends, spouses, co-workers and employers because of very legitimate personal and professional reasons; and by the air of masculinity many of them project, can easily “pass” as straight. Like the homosexual in denial, they are often forced to express anti--gay opinions when the subject arises as a diversionary tactic to deflect any suspicions that they may be one of “them.”

I am not proud to say that as a senior executive for a faith-based health care system, I was one of those people. In my defense, I clearly had justification for such behavior as I witnessed firsthand a “brother,” who was open about his sexuality and up for the chief operating office position of our organization, being passed over simply because he was gay. In fact, the archbishop was even rumored to have said that no way would he ever permit “a queer” to run one of his hospitals. Eventually, my friend Charlie, who had more degrees and experience than all of our shop’s execs combined, was demoted and forced to resign by our new boss. Obviously, the new boss knew more than Charlie; two years later, our system filed for bankruptcy.

Years later, in my second career as a college instructor, I befriended a fellow faculty member who came out to me. She and her partner had moved to Salt Lake City from New York, where she eventually became the press secretary for the mayor who, learning of her orientation, exploited it for his own self interests by having her “out” herself to the local media. This subsequently led to a cover story in The Advocate. Now, back on the East Coast and teaching, she is daily mortified that her students will “Google” her and uncover her secret life. In a form of over-compensation, she admits she is silent and avoids comment when the occasional anti-homosexual dispersion crops up in her classroom.

Then there is the gay male who I would characterize as the “straight gay,” the homosexual man leading an active and open gay life either solo or with a partner (including divorced fathers raising their children) who, like some closeted gays, projects a totally masculine demeanor and physical presence not unlike a typical American heterosexual male. In his mind he is as much a man as any man in American society and, as a result, he uncategorically abhors and is uncomprisingly critical both privately and in public gay venues of his effeminate, effete counterparts, the “queens,” “fems,” twinks” and cross dressers to whom he cannot relate, and for whom he blames, in large part, straight society’s distaste of gay people.

Ironically, though in lesser numbers than the “straight gays,” there are some effeminate homosexuals who feel equal antagonism towards “butches” whose demeanor they view as hypocritical and pretentious.

Lastly, from the larger, more global perspective, we have the tensions that often arise sometimes subliminally, other times quite overtly, between gay men and gay women, whom many male homosexuals stereotypically feel “hate men.”

All this is more than some verbose sociological dissection of our sub-culture; it points to a very real dilemma and an obstruction in our movement for equal rights under the law. Because of this animosity and prejudicial behavior among us, it is impossible for us to stand as a united front and show heterosexual society that just as it is diverse, so, too, are we and that we – all of us - are not asking any more or less than any other American. The convincing of larger society of this reality is paramount to our success since we cannot forget that the destiny of our equal rights movement rests in the hands of a body politic, legislators and voters, that is overwhelming hetero (just as back in the’60’s, African Americans relied on a predominantly white Congress for civil rights legislation to be passed).

For attitudes that divide us to change, channels of communication need to be established in some way among the various factions within our demographics, with the end goal to achieve a better understanding of one another and, in the process, ourselves. Challenging given all the reasons I have detailed in this piece? Undoubtedly. Yet the dialogue needs to start somewhere and soon.

Perhaps it can start right here, right now.

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Post written by RP Andrews (View Author Profile)
About this author: RP Andrews is a New York City transplant now living in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. A former public relations executive, he currently teaches writing at a local university. RP Andrews is the author of several books of erotic gay fiction and also maintains a daily blog Confessions of a Str8 Gay Man.
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Comments

I think this tematic is sooo interesting....

So many years ago I could defined myself link a homophobic.... now... I dont know...

Its a little hard to feel that homosexyality is normal like heterosexuality, Sometimes I feel some exotic, part of an urban tribe, something strange...

Here in the Binle Belt, it is common to run across self-loathing gay men. Some are even against same sex marriage. They proudly call themselves Republican. One category you left out are the so-called "ex-gays" who have been "cured" by Jesus because they prayed hard enough to be straight. Thanks for bringing our attention to a very real but often hidden problem.

Am i Homophobic because i can't relate to other gay men? Straight guys go through the same thing in their lives too, women too. Humans have a thing where they gravitate to those they want to be like or have things in common with, should that be called a phobia? Like others i try to build bridges to those i don't know or have things in common with, but I am not stupid enough to believe I will get on with everyone, so what I have little in common with effeminate men, or leather men, It's not about rejecting them, It's about being me, flaws and all. And those who i can't relate to get my respect anyway.

From this blog i see more labels someone with no sense of personal identity will burden themselves with, I ask you this, we are already labeled from those outside the community, must be brand ourselves too? I personally believe if I have to label myself there is something missing from my persona in the first place. I am first and foremost a HUMAN BEING, which is something that applies to us all unconditionally.

When I read the title I was thinking to find the other type of homophobic homosexual I most of the time run into: the masculine, tough gay male that overtly have a bias against feminine gays. This is the most endemic inside homophobia. I work for a non-profit that focuses on services for GLBT people of color. In the african american and latino communities is a bigger sin to be perceived as feminine acting than to have sex with other men. Being a top is fine, but being a bottom is denigrating (in their mind, not mine).

I HAVE KNOWN THAT I WAS DIFFERENT, SINCE AN EARLY AGE MY ATTRACTION TO BOYS NEVER FAULTERED EVEN THOUGH I TRIED TO BE ATTRACTED TO GIRLS, BUT, WITH OUT SUCCESS I ACCEPTED FROM A EARLY AGE THAT I WAS GAY AND IN THE 70-80'S THIS WAS HARD FOR ME SINCE I HAD TO KEEP IT A SECRET BOTH FROM MY FRIENDS AND FROM MY FAMILY, ESPECIALLY MY FAMILY. I MYSELF AM NOT TYPICAL MASCULINE OR FEMININE, I CONSIDER MYSELF NORMAL IF YOU WANT TO GIVE IT A LABEL, THROUGH THE YEARS I HAVE LEARNED THAT MANY HOMOSEXUALS FIGHT FOR EQUALITY IS HYPOCRITICAL, MANY WHO FIGHT FOR THE RIGHT TO MARRIAGE SHOULD FIGHT FOR MONOGAMY, IF YOU WANT TO BE TAKEN SERIOUSLY SHOW THEM THAT YOU CAN BE IN ONE LOVING RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN ONE MAN/MAN ONE WOMAN/WOMAN OR ON MAN AND A WOMAN BUT IF YOU OPEN YOUR RELATIONSHIP TO OTHERS FROM SHEER BOREDOM TO YOUR PARTNER DONT EXPECT OTHERS OR MYSELF TO TAKE THE RIGHT TO MARRIAGE SERIOUSLY, ITS A FARCE I DONT BELIEVE THAT ANYONE SHOULD NEGATE YOUR RIGHT TO DO ANYTHING CONSTITUTIONAL OR RELIGIOUS, BUT SINCE WE LIVE IN A WORLD THAT IS BOUND BY THESE LAWS EXPECT THAT WHAT YOU SAY SHOULD BE BACKED UP BY WHAT YOU MEAN.

Straight men cheat on thier straight wifes every day. Marriage and monogamy are two totally different topics than that being discussed here. First, let's fight for the right for ALL Americans the freedom to the "pursuit of happiness" and marriage equally recognized, and protected, by all the States and Commonwealths of this country. But until that happens, then we can open the conversation and totally discuss the challenges of such unions.

LFK

In theory, your point is valid, but in reality, the masses in general see homosexuals as corrupted, uninhibited sex maniacs. It is up to us to show everyone such is not the case...or is it the case???

Ever attended the Folsom Street Fair? As poor an advertisement for "our kind" than anything any straight critic could muster. We can't be about all sex, all the time - or else that becomes the defining characteristics.

I agree that gay marriage should become legal only when the entire marriage structure is strengthened, making divorce difficult. Frankly, I don't think that two men or women marrying should be called "marriage" at all. Make it an entirely different institution.

And while we're at it, let's emphasize monogamy as a value. Every time I see someone posting on here while in a relationship, I am just sorry for him.

i agree with u with that..feel the same way here..

qwqeqe

It seems that in order for folks to stand up for one thing or another then that means that all others must be seen as unacceptable and labeled. Human nature tends to make oneself the center of the universe and enlightenment as all others must be corrected just as the pope and his knights Templar performed correction on many peasants who would not label themselves appropriately. Validating oneself by putting everyone else down certainly doesn't lead to anything positive for sure. There has to be an acceptance of other groups to exist outside ones own space or history repeats itself. Look at the planet from millions of miles away and then wonder how important a lot of opinions actually are. A really inhuman thing is when people who can't even communicate how they feel are given 8 different expensive medications with no way to tell what is even going on in the retarded persons head. Thats literally barbaric treatment of people who cant even talk about what they are feeling when doctors experiment on them just like the ole European institutional days of chaining people to the wall and then eventually shock therapy and now chemical experimentation.

"Because of this animosity and prejudicial behavior among us, it is impossible for us to stand as a united front and show heterosexual society that just as it is diverse, so, too, are we..." Because we have differences you don't like, we can't take a unified stand to show that we...have differences?

You seem to want everyone to feel just like you. Do you want diverse or not? Not only are there the long and complex individual life journeys, --including your own--there are actual differences of opinion and attitude. These different attitudes have always existed and always will. It is pointless to long for some eventual unity of attitude, opinion and behavior that will match yours.

I have been out, and came out at great personal cost, more than 20 years ago My erotic passion for men is a gift I am grateful for and a secret to no one in my life. But I am a man, a man who likes men and so that passion sometimes seems like the only thing I have in common with or like about a lot of gay men. So you can tell me til the cows come home that I should recognize as my brothers guys who like to dress and act like Carol Channing or, even more, transgenders who want to cut their dicks off and be girls...it ain't gonna work. That's diversity. Welcome to it.

good god; does it not occur to american queers that EVERY OTHER DEVELOPED COUNTRY IN THE WORLD NOW HAS GAY MARRIAGE.

don't you find it just a little bit shocking that america, the country that has spouted it's feedoms and civil rights to the entire world, often with bombs to follow, is THE LAST country to understand this basic civil rights issue?

there is a larger issue here, folks. it is the fact that the us judicial system and electoral system is BROKEN.

americans need to read about, study and travel more in the rest of the civilized world. your
schools used to be number 2 or 3 on standardized tests NOW YOU ARE NUMBER 17.

YOUR SCHOOLS ARE BROKEN.
YOUR BANKS ARE BROKEN.
LARGE CORPORATIONS TOTALLY CONTROL BOTH OF YOUR POLITICAL PARTIES.
YOUR MANUFACTURING INDUSTRY IS BROKEN.

most americans know so little about other G8 countries it is pathetic.

YOUR MEDIA IS TOTALLY CONTROLLED BY BIG BUSINESS. your finest minds like noam chomsky are virtually silenced in your own country. how many of you have really read Gore Vidal, your most famous man of letters?

i would put that gay marriage is the least of america's worries. but still you must fight on. the rest of the civilized world feels sorry for you.

jimkirk

Jim you are right but miss directed the roots of your banking, politics, judicial system are all underpinned by Christian Fundamentalist teaching which has your country by the balls ( and supported by all other religious fundamentalists ) good luck.
Christopher UK

The religious right are just being played. The corporate interests that run the GOP could care less about those issues. Not that damage isn't done along the way but religion is currently, as it always was, a tool used by those in power to deceive the masses into going along with a system in which they are exploited.

Wow! After that vitriolic sputum -- Christophobia, anti-Americanism and the mental/emotional chaos that characterizes a conspiracy theorist -- you have revealed the bigot, the racist and the internal mess you are. As such, I'm quite sure any reasonable person will realize the genuine value of your comments.

Gee, thanks for the completely unrelated anti-America rant. You couldn't wait to let that fly, could you? Perhaps it would have been more appropriate had this been an article about the American judicial and electoral systems, or America's Larger Issues. This article, however, was entitled "The Homophobic Homosexual," a very specific, gay-themed "smaller issue" that wasn't created to quench your larger issue thirst. The issues you've touched upon, which again, this article is not about, are well-documented elsewhere, in pieces not entitled "The Homophobic Homosexual." As you can see, the author doesn't contend that this is America's largest issue, probably because he was writing an article about a completely different topic, making your comment an unprovoked, unnecessary, condescension festival. Not all articles, particularly those found on the journalistic dynamo DaddyHunt.com, are intended to contribute to world peace or other issues that you deem larger. Besides, why waste your time when you could be reading Chomsky or Vidal, who I'm not permitted to access without risk of imprisonment in this autocratic, uneducated wasteland. Perhaps you could write an article comparing and contrasting American achievements and contributions with those of Canada.

Yeah, like slavery and nation building.

Slavery? The US hasn't had slavery since, oh, about 150 years ago and it was a British gift to the world long before it was American. Do you even read history books? Nation building? Well, can't fight you there. How about medical advances like the polio vaccine for instance. How about the fact that, even with its problems, the US is still the dominant economic force on the planet? How about, however self serving it might have been, the blood the US has shed to protect the world like in WW1 and 2? Of course, Europe shed a lot more, but we did help. How about American tax dollars that were poured into the Marshall Plan to re-build Europe after, admittedly, we bombed the crap out of it in WW2? Other countries would scarcely have lifted a finger. So sneer away, buddy, it won't change a thing, you're still American...or at least living in the lovely San Francisco and reaping the benefits while dumping on the country. Great manners either way.

What a wonderful comment. Americans don't realize how backwards they are nowadays.
Live and let live! Europe has progressed enormously. Today ignorance prevails in America. Ignorant people fight, intelligent people dialogue. And Americans are fighting everywhere. It is about time that Americans traveled with their eyes and ears wide open. By accepting other ways of life in other countries they might learn how to accept different ways of life in America, too.
We are firstly all human beings and should be grateful for such a marvelous variety.
Live and let live!!!!

HmmHmm oh yeah. Chomsky is required reading for any politically active queer. Turn off the GaGa and pick up a book fer fuck's sake. Until our culture or sub-culture/s (which i see bandied about and makes me cringe. Hello, there are all sorts of Breeders into various hobbies, politics, lifestyles etc. We are ONE class of people being denied the most basic of rights) educates ourselves and learn from the examples of the civil rights movement, even the fucking Suffragettes, we will NEVER move forward. Our predominant culture, presently, is percieved as a bunch of cry babies and lacking the balls and conviction that these heroes invoked and embodied before us. There are many lessons to be learned, if we could only LISTEN.

While media is a large part of this perception, it is slowly getting better (i.e. the Modern Family dude winning that Emmy, and HE"S STRAIGHT) but we push ourselves into a corner if we continue to "celebrate" our god-given right with hours of excess Friday-Sunday, ending up in a K, T, C(take ur pick) Hole at the end of it all begging for more dick. We look like philistines and the 3/4s of this country is not down with this BBQ.
Please, for the seventh generation's sake, READ (Chomsky, Roth, Malcolm X, even f'ing Larry Kramer), GET INVOLVED, and most importantly, GET OUT OF THE CLOSET, PROUDLY and with INTEGRITY.

"The rest of the civilized world feels sorry for you." Wow, classy. Not actually part of the topic, but really, you're so eloquent your contribution was a blast of fresh air. Gotta say, though, most individuals who genuinely feel either 'sorry' for or 'superior' to a group or nation of people don't generally demonstrate it by spewing ranting vitriol at them. They more often remain quiet; it's the decent [ahem] civilized thing to do. I do realize we 'mercans are a dense, loony bunch, but was not - until now - aware that Canada was a shining paragon of sophistication, sought after worldwide for its ideas, innovation and culture. Course if we do go down - and who knows, we sure could - you might suddenly feel a tad bit more vulnerable, as the horseback riding Mounties - cute as their little uniforms and hats are - do not appear to have the capacity to defend half of an entire continent. You might have to redirect some of that revenue and energy...if there's time...into your own security. One minute, nice and cozy, the next an easy, virtually unguarded target. Sitting ducks, as the saying goes. Quack. Geeze, maybe the crazy mericans south of your border have, on balance, been pretty good neighbors here and there...

Jim, agree with most of what you say, but it's not factually true that all other developed countries recognize same-sex marriage: Japan does not, Italy (which is even more corrupt and messed-up than the U.S.) does not even recognize same-sex civil unions: most of the other EU countries recognize same-sex civil unions with all or most of the rights of marriage, but they don't call it marriage--only Netherlands, Spain, and some of the Scandinavian countries do, to the best of my knowledge. But it's true that the U.S. is exceptionally homophobic, and preoccupied with sexual difference--due to the pernicious influence of religion in this country. It was nice recently being in Canada, seeing a young gay couple holding hands in public And Nobody Cared! Mighty sensible people those Canadians.

BRILLIANT !!!!!!

Sorry, Jim, but EVERY other country in the developed world does NOT have gay marriage. Italy, France, Germany, Russia, Poland, Japan...well, it's easier to list those that do rather than those that do not. So you can keep your condescending patronizing "the rest of the world feels sorry for you". You think the media in other countries do not have a major big business component? Silvio Berlusconi owns most of the media in Italy and what he doesn't own he controls through his children or the state. Rupert Murdoch and his News Corp own a lot of the media in the UK and other countries. It's true that some Americans don't even know that Europe and Africa are not countries (they're continents with lots of countries in them) but I think you're conflating those ridiculous man on the street interview programs where you see only the stupid answers. I and most of my friends could answer most or all of them correctly. Yes, I've read Gore Vidal and I think Noam Chomsky is a neo Conservative twit. The judicial system is much better than in most of the rest of the world and while we've lots of economic problems, so does the rest of the world, with the possible exception of China.
So when you're done bashing the US, you might consider that every year some 20 million people apply for the Visa lottery....it must not be that bad here. Could the US use a lot of work? It sure could, but your brand of abuse really isn't helpful.
I've travelled a lot in the world, lived in other countries and they've all been wonderful. But so is the US and you're, sadly, just out of touch.

Viscous hate crimes? Hate crimes that are thick and sticky? Just busting balls. Seriously, though, an interesting article and well-written. Internalized homophobia really is one of our biggest enemies and gives the others more ammo than they'll ever need. Homophobia keeps the closeted gay people in fear of themselves and of hetero aggression, and biphobia, keeps bisexuals in fear of not being accepted even within the gay community, costing us valuable allies who figure if they've got to pick one or the other, they'll pick the side that's privileged.

It's a sad state of affairs that needs to be seen to if we're going to win our civil rights.

I wonder how common or destructive these prejudicial attitudes are. Sometimes simple matters of attraction are misconstrued as prejudice. For example, I am attracted to men of East Asian (Oriental) descent and rarely find men of other ethnicities attractive. There have been occasions when others have interpreted this natural - and uncontrolable - attraction as a rejection of other gay men. The fact that I have no interest in Leather, S&M, or Trannies does not mean that I have negative feelings towards them or that I think they are less deserving of Equal Rights.

'Coming out' is difficult for all of us. I am a Merchant Seaman. I not only work with straight men, I have lived with them in close quarters for half my life. I find that attitudes have changed a lot in the past few years. The men I work with rarely make disparaging remarks about gay people in general and often express respect for men they know to be gay. I am not brave enough to come out, per se, but my policy is to reply honestly to anyone who asks me if I am gay. In 20 years that has happened just once, though I was repeatedly 'outed' several years ago by another gay man and believe that nearly everyone I work with knows about my orientation but chooses not to discuss it. I believe that even my somewhat cowardly version of 'coming out' helps straight men to understand that what they have always believed about homosexuality is not valid.

We will win our Civil Rights. It will come when staight people realize two important things; that their pre-conceived notions of gay people are mostly wrong, and that being gay is not a matter of choice. Harvey Milk and other gay leaders were absolutely right when they said that we cannot win if we don't 'come out'.

Unity

Why would I stand next to a group who give those who hate the gay community ammunition to beat us up with, whose who say, "I am what I am" and you should just accept me, those who have very little decency and respect for others, yet scream accept me !!! Lets not pretend that within the community we have those mainstream society will not accept, it is easy to blame Christians rather than look inside our own house and educate those who gleefully live lives that stick two fingers in spite, not only to mainstream society, but to others within the community.

No one will have equality as long as they continue to spite everyone around them, they are stopping you from having your human rights, and i once again say, "HUMAN" and not, "CIVIL"

As in the post by Captain, the man who repeatedly "outed" him is exactly the person who holds your rights from you, in my view the kind of man I don't want to stand next to.

Regarding the words of RP Andrews in his blog "the Homophobic Homosexual," I wish I could feel as optimistic as he does on the fate of Gay marriage (opening paragraph) when the case reaches the Supremes. Obama would need yet one more quick appointment to tip the 5/4 balance that daunts us, so far he's just kept "our" four votes intact for a few more years (and Ruth Bater Ginzberg is still living with a serious Cancer). And that appointment would not only need to happen quickly to give us the fair hearing we seek and deserve but it would have to survive every sleazy tactic a numerically larger and newly energized Republican Senate (I only hope the coming elections make me eat that prediction) could employ to stall & defeat Obama's pick from being confirmed in the Senate.

And justice Roberts--I've heard respected "talking-heads" pinning their hopes on his breaking from the other four justices cemented into their ideological-right beliefs and thinking independently. But Roberts' track record of showing such enlightened thinking when issues concerning gays are concerned makes me question their hope of a "Roberts epiphany."

So we are left with a strong case--many believe to be our best bet and I agree, being fought on our side by two of the nation's most capable legal minds, but being heard by a court Ruled by a five member cabal, all willing to Shamelessly toss the constitution out the window and rule along their personal, far-right ideological views. Just do a sampling of the decisions coming from this "gang of 5" and you can get a better chill-thrill than you will by renting that favorite horror film.

I just hope Andrews is right on target with his optimism and I am proven wrong. Should that happen I'll gladly eat my words on the steps of the Supreme Court while crying with joy.

Rick in Medford, MA

I never thought of myself as homophobic, never had any reason to come out of the closet because of all the people who would be hurt by me going public. I never realized how much of a corner I have painted myself into, never understood just how much I have been hurting myself by placing others feelings ahead of my own. I can't see a way out of this hole I have dug for myself, other than the permenant solution, have I contemplated it, yes many times, will I do it, most likely not. I am old enough now that it really isn't important for me any more, but I hope the younger generation will listen to people like this author and in turn not paint themselves into such a corner that there is no escape, do not be foolish like men such as me have done.

As one of those who projects a "masculine demeanor and physical presence not unlike a typical American heterosexual male. In his mind he is as much a man as any man in American society" I disagree with some of your comments.

For isnbtance, "as a result, he uncategorically abhors and is uncomprisingly critical both privately and in public gay venues of his effeminate, effete counterparts, the “queens,” “fems,” twinks” and cross dressers to whom he cannot relate, and for whom he blames, in large part, straight society’s distaste of gay people."

My preference for masculine acting men has NOTHING to do with my "masculine demeanor and physical presence". It is my own preference. And I think a case can be made for the "“queens,” “fems,” twinks” and cross dressers", although I would not use those words, as doing us all a disfavor in being accepted. Let's face it it does not further the cause to have men in skimpy Speedoes body painted gold prancing down Fifth Avenue in the Gay Pride Parade, as has happened in the past.

It sounds to me like you want a cookie-cutter image of a homosexual male. One who is out and proud and does not act TOO masculine. Good luck with that. My sexuality is my business, and no one else's. My straight siblings and friends do not chat casually about their sexual activities, neither do I. If that makes me closeted, then I'm closeted. I don't HIDE my sexuality, neither am I in others' faces about it. To me that's normal. It is not in denial, it is not in the closet. It's just who I am. And if I disagree with some of the homosexual agenda, then does not make me traitor or unfaithful, it just makes me an individual.

I tend to agree with your post...I never thought of myself as a 'gay-hating gay', but I too, prefer more 'masculine' men...I'm not attracted to women, nor am I attracted to anything with a penis...lol So why would I want to have sex with a man who behaves in a 'feminine' way? It has never appealed to me. Is it wrong for me not to want another man (or woman for that matter) to refer to me as "girlfriend"??

I'm also not "out". But I don't have personal issues with my own sexuality, nor am I ashamed of it...NOR do I fail to defend gays when the issue of homosexuality is brought up around friends, co-workers, and family.

Totally agree with you, it is tiresome to be labelled as homophobic simply because of the lack of "Out and proud" mentality. I've never understood the need for coming out and celebrating sexuality or being proud of it for that matter. Be proud if you passed your driving test or passed your exams, that is an achievement, there's no achievement in sexuality it is just what we are.

It's a very provocative subject, but i believe individuals should not be labelled as "homophobic" simply because they disapprove of certain actions by fellow gays or lesbians. After all, being gay is only an assertion of sexual identity...and if one's behavior is loud, garish, pretentious or obnoxious, that seems to be more of a criticism of behavior rather than sexual orientation. Just as some straight men "play up" their straight attitudes, i believe that some gays do the same. Some straight men try to compensate their insecurities by being overtly macho...and so it makes sense that some gays would follow suit with overtly affected mannerisms & assertions. It is possible that a gay man is disliked because he is annoying, not gay. We should not gives gays carte blanche to behave any which way they want simply because they are claiming their sexuality. It is about respecting one another for who we are, and I think it's hard for anyone to respect others when their own behavior doesn't dictate it. The attitude of entitlement seems to be prevalent, and that contributes greatly to creating a negative stereotype, in my opinion.

Here here! Admirably expressed.

That's 'Hear, hear!' :-)

I apologize. English is the fourth language I learned, not the first. Spelling homonyms always causes me fright, upset and general angst. I guess that makes me a homophobic of another breed, eh?

Lad, you are wise beyond your years.....

I couldn't have said it better myself. Going out this Saturday night I witnessed so much of that "attitude of entitlement" not just amongst the younger men but even men older than me.

Bravo Sir!

Notions of what behaviors are “annoying” are constructed and conditioned by race, culture, and, yes, homophobia. Excluding behavior that actually harms others, acceptance of diversity means recognizing that there is no absolute standard of masculinity to which all men should or can conform. Masculinity is a spectrum that includes shy, slight, sissy boys and macho, muscle gods and everything in between. Misogyny, hatred or denigration of women, also factors into perceptions of men displaying “feminine“ mannerisms annoying or ”improper.“

Internalized homophobia is subtle and insidious. It can manifest as aversion toward men who do not behave in the manners widely accepted as ”masculine“ by heterosexist society. It can manifest as discomfort with ”public“ displays of homosexual desire. It can manifest as overcompensation for aspects of one's own personality that do not fit societal standards for masculinity.

I agree that a gay man can be annoying simply because of obnoxious behavior rather than because of his homosexuality, per se, but it can be difficult or impossible to distinguish aversion based in homophobia from aversion to boorish behavior when the boor displays stereotypically ”gay“ mannerism. I have found it useful in my own development as a gay man to question the ”automatic“ aversions I have experienced to certain ”gay“ behaviors and strive to appreciate differences even when I don't choose to emulate them.

The ideological composition of the U.S. Supreme Court was not altered by the appointments of Justices Sotomayor and Kagan. (Both of these justices are liberals who replaced liberals.) So there is no basis for believing, firmly or otherwise, that their appointments would change the court's vote on the question of whether the Constitution protects a right to same-sex marriage. Now, as before, that decision rests with Justice Kennedy, the court's "swing vote."

The phrase "pursuit of happiness" is from the Declaration of Independence, not the Constitution, and it played no role whatsoever in the Supreme Court's decision in Roe. [See Roe v. Wade, 410 U.S. 113 (1973).]

A good example of a bad public display contributing to Homophobia was the show put on for prime-time by "Adam Lambert" where he had guys in chains and on a leash and singing about the connection between pleasure and pain till he got censored. Many straight people will get their idea of gay life from the fantasy characters on TV. If people become homophobic as a result then it can end up based on fictional characters that don't even exist in 24/7 daily lives of routine. The wardrobe malfunction at a Superbowl caused just as much of a clamorous discourse in the straight community as any extreme display of flamboyance has for sure.

I am attracted to men not fems, queens or queers..If I would want to be with somebody acting feminine, I would go and find a woman.

Do we issue corrections to our own comments on here? In my third paragraph I was thinking Kennedy then remembering RFK & typing Roberts instead of Kennedy. I know this correction isn't necessary as no one has commented (so it's likely now one has read the previous blog but I might as well get it right).
Rick in Medford, MA

Libr045 - says what i originally felt like saying after reading what RP Andrews said
but after reading the brilliant, more accepting replies I would like to echo what
irishcream and usmalesf have said.

I also really liked the entries of:
eldarin - his first entry
capitan
ShyPup4LTR

OK, I'll stake a stab at this one myself.

I read through these comments and I have to marvel in dismay at the naivete of the posters.

Lovingbear1-you say "if I would want to be with somebody acting feminine, I would go and find a woman." Do you realize this is exactly what the ex-gay movement, the religious right fundies, and all those crackpot conservative nutjobs keep trying to tell America - that somehow being gay is a choice we make and thus not deserving of protection under the law? Nobody's saying that you need to be attracted to effeminate men; what we're saying is that by looking down your nose at them as less than deserving of the full panoply of rights we ALL deserve, by virtue of being human, you're stabbing other gay people in the back.

Likewise to all the people who say "if only those [drag queens/spandex muscle boys/leather men/strippers] weren't out in public on pride day"... Trust me, the people who have it in for us don't just hate "some" of us - they hate us all. To them, we're all disease-carrying pedophiles-in-waiting who just can't wait to get our hands on their god-fearing children and pervert them. Are there some people out there who don't hate us, but are bothered by these displays? Sure there are. But I doubt those people form their core opinion of gay people by the occasional chance encounter with a drag queen.

Back in the days of segregation, there were black leaders who urged their brethren to kowtow to the white man in the hopes of getting along better. Just say lots of "yes sirs" and shuffle along and keep your head down, and everything will be all right, they said. You know what? It wasn't all right; whether they classified you as a "good negro" or an "uppity nigrah", you still used the colored fountain, you still sat in the back of the bus, you still couldn't rent a hotel room in a white hotel, you couldn't eat in a white restaurant. If you dared go to the front door of a white-owned house, even as a minister of the "getting-alongest" church there was, you were risking a beating.

It's the same for us - our human/civil rights are not going to be recognized because we behave well enough to placate those who would oppress us; they are going to be recognized when enough of us stand up and demand them, not just from the courts and from government, but from everyone we know - family, friends, employers.

THAT is why being closeted is a form of internalized homophobia: we need every ally we can get, and it's a lot harder for someone to walk into a voting booth and vote for a homophobe or against a measure banning discrimination when the gay people in his life have sat down with him and told him - "This affects ME. This thing is aimed at ME."

Nobody's saying you have to "chat casually about [your] sexual activities" to avoid the closet; but when everyone's discussing crazy things their wives or girlfriends do, to keep quiet because you don't want to use the word "boyfriend" or "partner" or a male pronoun to join in IS being closeted. You're behaving by a different set of rules - not talking about your domestic life - simply to keep hidden the sex of your partner. It may be (unfortunately) necessary in a few select occupations and locations - the military, being a teacher in Texas or Mississippi, law enforcement in many places - but it's still something that needs to change.

Good post, although I have a couple of disagreements:

1. Concerning lbears comments...he did specifically state if he wanted to "be" with someone "acting feminine" he would go find a woman...I kind of feel the same way...behave however you want, but know that having a penis won't automatically make me attracted to you or want to "be" with you...we all have likes/dislikes when it comes to men. The statement isn't meant to be literal (unless the person is bisexual). But I don't see how I'm looking down on more fem-acting men because I'm not into them sexually. I'll still defend their right to behave any way they want. I just won't have sex/be in a relationship with them.

2. I'm "closeted"...at least for now. That doesn't mean I sit around and let friends/family bash gays and sit silently out of fear that they might suspect me of being gay. You can not be out and still defend gays. And I don't discuss my sexual experiences for two reasons...one, I'm not 'out', and two, I don't care about my friends/family's sexual escapades, and to offer up my own sort of sends the message that this is a topic I want to discuss...I don't. lol

Ftlvr314,

I don't know that we disagree all that much. At least on the first point, simply not being into feminine men sexually doesn't make one homophobic, of course. However, all too often, that's followed by something along the lines of "can't these guys just act like men instead of women?" or "I cringe when one of these guys who's so flaming starts talking..." or the like. That's when I start to suspect homophobia. Actually, I don't just suspect it - that IS homophobia.

If most of these guys didn't have a circle of friends exactly like themselves, I'd be less suspicious. But it's hard to defend that it's only a lack of sexual interest in less masculine gay men when they don't have any friends, either, who are "fabulous".

As for the second point - Coming out is a process, and not everyone is ready to start it at the same time, nor is everyone at the same stages at the same times in life. But I will tell you this: defending gays from bashing is a thousand times more effective when it's coming from someone who says "And by the way, I'm gay myself, so I know what I'm talking about" to someone he knows . It forces people who make thoughtless or bigoted remarks to rethink their prejudices in a way that simply defending the tribe can't.

That doesn't mean talk about your sexual escapades. That's tacky in most venues, straight or gay. But as I put it: if your co-worker is telling a funny story about some crazy thing her husband does that drives her nuts, and you aren't comfortable responding with "My last boyfriend was exactly the same way", then something's wrong. Either you're in the wrong job, or you don't believe your experience with a same-sex partner deserves the same public treatment that an opposite-sex one does. And in a nutshell, that IS internalized homophobia.

cowboy:

thanks for the response, first off.

I tend not to follow up a lack of attraction to "feminine" men with an insult...I mean, if I had a dollar for everytime a white guy told me: 'sorry, not into black guys...at ALL', I'd be a hundred-aire. LOL I'd also be upset if he followed it up with some lame statement about how black guys act, so I try to be fair (well, as much as any human can be).

Concerning coming out--honestly, it's a mixed bag. I have friends who are openly gay (although they don't know for *sure* if I am or not), and when they aren't around, I hear my straight friends make comments like 'well, he/she only feels that way BECAUSE they're gay'...and one several occasions I've had my friends, after I've defended gays (which I don't like, since I don't think gay be should have to "defend" themselves or their demand for equality) say to me 'oh, I never thought of it that way'. But yes, I also have friends who are more open-minded now precisely BECAUSE our gay friends came out.

Thank you, Cowboy, you've hit the nail on the head.

A couple years ago I came across a group that claimed that Anal Sex was what disgusted straight people, and who insisted that only gay men practicing frottage was acceptable to the majority denying us our rights. I told them they were out of their minds, the majority was not going to say, "Okay, civil rights ONLY to the guys who don't get blow jobs or take it up the ass!" they hate ALL of us, and the fact that they were having sex, any kind of sex, with another man was the justification.

I had an interesting situation at work about 25 years ago...I was talking to a coworker as we watched footage of a gay pride parade on a television (we worked at a TV station). The coworker was expressing bafflement about why "they" felt the need to march in parades. I answered his questions, and after a while he realized I wasn't talking about why "they" might feel the need, but why "we" felt the need. He commented on this, and said, "Is there something you want to tell me?" And I said, "I assumed you already knew." He was very conservative, but we went on to have an interesting and meaningful discussion about civil rights for gay people, and I ended up changing an opinion.

Although I'm in the Leather community (serve as a Director for one of the oldest Leather/BDSM clubs in the country), and tend to socialize pretty much exclusively within my community, I'm always amazed at the diversity of people that turn out for San Francisco's Gay Pride parade. And I must admit....I'm proud of them all, for being out, for marching, for refusing to be invisible. And although some effeminate twink drag queen may not be who I'm sexually attracted to (and I'm especially not attracted to the Dykes, though they may be on Bikes), they all deserve their civil rights just as much as I do.

When I was young I thought I had to assimilate in order to become a part of society. Now I know it's the harder path: remain true to yourself AND claim a place in society as who you are. We are just as much a part of the fabric of this country as straight people, and I'm tired of being used as a boogeyman to scare the clueless by the Rabid Right, and tired of having to beg for the rights everyone else takes for granted. Britney Spears' sham 55 hour drunken marriage in Las Vegas got her more rights than I'm likely to see in my home state in my lifetime, and that's just not acceptable.
...Andrew