I'm against gay marriage because the Bible clearly states that a man can live inside a giant fish.
But seriously, folks...
Same-sex marriage is legal in many states now. And we're all still doing fine. Society hasn't crumbled to the ground. And everyone knows that it wasn't gay people who devalued and destroyed the sanctity of traditional, heterosexual marriage; it was the Kardashians.
Nevertheless, the gay marriage debate doesn't really have anything to do with marriage. It's about gay people. If you acknowledge that some people exist as gay, then you accept their right to marry people of the same sex. Otherwise, to oppose same-sex marriage is absurd. It would be like saying, "I acknowledge your inherent nature of only enjoying quality television programming. But legally you can only watch Two and a Half Men." People who oppose same-sex marriage are really just opposed to gay people.
Personally, I can't imagine a scenario in which I would give a frog's fart about what consenting adults do in the privacy of their own bedroom. But yet, here we are in the year 1890, and many Americans still believe that being gay is "wrong." I mean, one day we're going to have engine-powered vehicles and homes will be equipped with toilets that flush. This is progress. It's time to move past the 1700s, people.
So this essay is for the homophobes. If you already support a person's right to exist, then it's not necessary to continue reading. Just skip to the bottom, where refreshments will be served. I hope you like brownies.
In the Old Testament (one of my top five favorite Testaments), in Leviticus 18, it states that "you shall not lie with a male as with a woman." I guess that means gay men are not supposed to fondle each other's breasts. In Leviticus 19, it says you're not supposed to wear clothing made from more than one cloth. That means I'm a sinner because my new jeans are 70 percent cotton and 30 percent pure sexiness. (No, but seriously, I look really good in these jeans.)
In pretty much the same section where the gay thing is written, the Bible also clearly states you're not supposed to get a tattoo. And though it doesn't mention this specifically, I suspect the Bible is doubly opposed to face tattoos.
The Bible has a lot of rules that even the most religious people no longer follow. Some Biblical rules, in fact, would be impossible to follow in America in 2013. The Bible clearly states that you're supposed to rise in the presence of old people. So, wait, I'm supposed to stand for two whole hours when I watch a Steven Seagal movie? That's asking a lot.
See -- the Bible rules were made for people who lived back in Biblical times. God didn't write anything in the Bible about Internet browsing. Because He wanted us to develop advanced technology on our own. And He assumed that we would make our own, new rules about how to live in this modern society... as moral and kind and tolerant beings. God didn't seriously expect -- nor did He want us -- to take stuff literally from thousands of years ago. That's why God put Pat Robertson on some high-numbered cable channel that you can't find.
A good rule of thumb is to take one-third of the Bible literally, another one-third of the Bible figuratively, and the other one-third just ignore.
God loves gay people. God loves straight people. God loves bisexual people, even though He suspects that most bisexuals are probably just gay people who can't fully admit it yet. God loves all of us. Eh, maybe "love" is too strong a word. I mean, if you take into consideration the typhoons and leukemia and the humidity, maybe He just likes us... but He likes us all equally.
(Actually, the Bible condemns heterosexuality. I mean, it's "Cain and Abel", not "Cain and Mabel.")
But the Bible doesn't really have anything to do with homophobia. People use the Bible to rationalize their own conflicted emotions. All heterosexual men think Ryan Gosling is hot. But we're unsettled by this feeling. (We don't understand all the Adam Levine hoopla, though. He looks kind of mousey and he acts so whiny. People Magazine's Sexiest Man Alive? Heck, I don't even think he's the sexiest man on "the Voice" judging panel. That honor goes to Christina Aguilera.)
When I was in seventh grade, about a hundred years ago, my friends and I used to watch the Eddie Murphy stand-up comedy concert film, Delirious, all the time. And we thought it was hysterical when Murphy talked about how the faggots weren't allowed to look at his ass while he moved around on stage. He joked about the "faggot section" in his audience. I didn't really understand who the "faggots" were, though. I was a kid; I didn't know that Murphy was just making fun of gay people in general. The camera stayed on Eddie Murphy for this entire monologue, so the film didn't show the live audience. Was there a group of gay people in the audience? How did Murphy know where the faggot section was? Why were they going to an Eddie Murphy concert? I didn't understand.
I'm not condemning Eddie Murphy, who was a huge and talented star back then. In the early 1980s this was accepted language. And Eddie Murphy was young and he was expressing his feelings. Watching Delirious now, I think, "Wait -- am I legally allowed to download this for free? How come the website is in Russian?" But my other thought is that, in an inappropriately offensive way, Eddie Murphy was the first big celebrity to come out in support of gay people. Murphy wasn't being hateful. He was being self-deprecating, admitting his own ridiculously irrational fears about a group of people who don't deserve it.
But when I was a kid, my homosexual experience being as vast as my heterosexual experience (IE none), we just thought the word "faggot" was hilarious and that talking about dudes having oral sex with each other was funny. All I knew about gay people back then was they were weird and they all lived in San Francisco. Now, of course, I understand that the gay people live in Michele Bachmann's house.
When I was in high school, people harassed my friend Doug for being gay. Doug wasn't gay. In fact, he was probably the most ungay person I knew. And he would often describe, in graphic detail, his sexual exploits with females. And I would, in graphic detail, listen. But Doug had bleached blonde punk rock hair. And in my 1980s small town suburban high school, that was gay.
There was another kid, a grade above me, named Al. And everyone knew that Al was gay. Actually, I had no idea if Al was gay. I saw him in the halls sometimes, but I didn't know him. But we all knew that Al was gay, which made him a punchline in conversation. Then, one time when I was a freshman, I was walking out of the boy's room. Lou, who was kind of a tough kid, but I liked him because he always left me alone, was walking out ahead of me. And as we were walking out of the bathroom, Al was walking in. Without hesitation or provocation, Lou body slammed Al into the wall. Lou said, "Fucking faggot." As Al was picking himself off the ground, Lou was already gone. I was a shy, awkward freshman. I didn't say anything and I didn't help Al up. I nervously waited for Al to stand up. Then I walked past him and I went back to class. As I sat there in class, I had but one thought in my not-yet-having-a-fully-formed-sense-of-compassion middle school mind. "I'm glad Lou doesn't think I'm gay." But... as the days went by, I couldn't shake the image of an expressionless Al dusting himself off as if nothing happened. This was probably something he was used to. And suddenly making fun of gay people didn't seem so funny. Reality has a way of doing that to you.
I'm still not exactly sure what "gay" means. Hence, when self-righteous moralists denounce the gay lifestyle, I'm not sure what they're condemning.
If you aren't sexually attracted to the same sex, but you've engaged in same-sex sexual experiences, is that gay? I mean, there have been times where I felt no emotional satisfaction from the hetero sex I was having with a woman. But enough about my wedding night!
If you are sexually attracted to the same sex, but you don't act on it, is that gay? Have you ever watched college fraternity brothers high-five each other? It's like the pre-credits scene of a gay porn film.
What is "gay" exactly?
What if you go on a same-sex date, but there is no actual sex? Is that gay? What if two men fool around with each other and make out a little, but there is no actual sex? Is that gay? Because as far as I know, George Clooney and Brad Pitt are straight.
Is "gay" just about sex? Outside of my own home and the Internet -- and one traumatizing moment involving me when I was in second grade walking into my parent's bedroom -- I've never actually seen people having sex. Go to the mall... right now. I bet nobody is having sex there. Does that mean everyone is asexual in the mall? Because that would explain JC Penny. I describe myself as having green eyes. I always have green eyes. I'm a green-eyed person. I'm not always having sex. So when I'm not having sex, what am I? Is a homosexual still a homosexual while browsing the aisles at Walmart? So, then, does "browsing the aisles at Walmart" constitute gay activity? If so, then 'homosexuality' must involve wearing sweat pants in public.
In actuality, "homosexuality" is a socially constructed idea, created by those with social power as a way of perpetuating their power over others. Are you a heterosexual or a homosexual? That's an easy question, right? Okay. Here's another one. Are you a teeth brusher or a car driver? Well, you're sort of both. But, on the other hand, you're not really a "teeth brusher." It's not a real label. Everyone brushes their teeth. Both gay people and straight people brush their teeth. Everyone drives a car. So nobody is going to condemn you for brushing your teeth or driving. But the majority of people have intercourse with people of the opposite sex. So they created this label called "homosexuality." And it's inferior to what we do... because we make the rules. If most people thought of themselves as gay, then "gay rights" wouldn't even be an issue.
"Homosexuality" and "heterosexuality" are socially constructed labels, regardless of your genetics. The only real thing is SEXUALITY. And this is different for everyone. I mean, I'm not sexually attracted to men. On the other hand, I'm also not sexually attracted to most women, either. I'm only attracted to gorgeous women. I'm shallow. As I sit in my booth at Pizza Hut, looking around at all the other customers, I'm thinking, "I want to have sex with almost nobody in this restaurant." Does that make me "almost gay" or "barely straight"? I'm also thinking, "Damn, I know it's easy to make fun of Pizza Hut, but these are mighty tasty bread sticks."
There are heterosexual women who aren't attracted to men with red hair. There are straight men that are only attracted to women with red hair. You know those creepy pseudo-religious groups that claim they can "convert" gay people? I wonder if those same groups can convert straight women into being attracted to men with red hair. Through the power of prayer and love, fundamentalists can help my friend Jenn be hot for guys with big beer guts. (note: My friend Jenn is straight, but she isn't attracted to guys with big beer guts. She's shallow, too. That's why we're good friends.)
Gay or straight, everyone is attracted to different parts of another person. Some people like breasts. Some people like butts. Some people like eyes. Some people like earlobes. Some people are attracted to a person's personality. Okay, nobody is attracted to a person's personality. Everyone is attracted to butts. And everyone has a butt. Sexually speaking, gay people and straight people are much more similar to each other than they are different. We all have a common -- but unique -- sexuality.
Some homophobic people say that being gay is bad because it's unnatural. But what does "unnatural" have to do with being bad? 'Natural' and 'bad' are different, separate words. According to my King James Version of the dictionary, the definition of 'natural' is "coming from nature, not made or caused by people." Since when does "not made by people" have anything to do with being good or bad? Getting a rash from poison ivy is natural. Poison ivy isn't made by people. Cancer is natural. Is cancer good? Dying your hair is unnatural. You're born with a natural hair color. If you change it, that's unnatural. Is that bad? Flying in an airplane is unnatural. Airplanes are made by people. Is flying in an airplane bad? No. Well, I mean, unless the weird stranger in the seat next to you wants to show you her vacation pictures.
Actually, based on the actual definition of what 'natural' means, gay sex is perfectly natural. If you can do something on a desert island, without any man-made equipment, it's natural. Well, two gay people can certainly engage in sex on an island. And if you don't believe me, just ask my Ginger and Mary Ann fantasy. (And in that sense, I've never really had "natural" heterosexual sex, as I always require a video camera, a dozen robots, an exercise bike, barbeque-flavored Pringles, a small gas engine, a couple of flashlights, and X-ray specs.)
When I was a freshman in college, I befriended an older, homosexual dance choreographer. I think my innocence amused him. He invited me to his home for dinner. I declined. I made up some excuse. I thought dinner would be fun, but I was afraid that he was going to hit on me. To this day, I'm still embarrassed by my actions. So now, anytime I meet a gay person, I invite myself over to their house for dinner.
Ugly, out-of-shape, inarticulate, homophobic men are always afraid that gay people are going to hit on them, even though this has never actually happened in the history of the universe. Meanwhile, women are always afraid that ugly, out-of-shape, inarticulate, homophobic men are going to hit on them... and they always do. Pretty, heterosexual women tend to be biased against homophobes. I call this "homophobicobia."
Rapper Eminem, on his new album, is back to using gay slurs. Eminem feels that, since he doesn't consider himself to be homophobic, it's not offensive to use "gay" and "fag" in his lyrics. That's sort of like saying, "Since I'm not a serial killer, it's okay for me to murder dozens of prostitutes."
Eminem doesn't think he has any ill will towards gay people. And he probably doesn't. But a lot of other people do. And they're downloading his music. And they're not saying "fag" ironically. Eminem is in his freakin' forties. Grow up. And consider the hurtful things that you're... hey, wait, I just made the connection; Eminem is named after the M&M's candy? Why would you name yourself after M&M's? M&M's aren't badass. They're little chocolate candies. I bet Kanye West wouldn't be as popular if he changed his last name to Snickers. "This is my daughter, North Snickers."
Performing on stage with Elton John doesn't excuse hateful lyrics. And being Elton John doesn't excuse "Benny and the Jets." Wow does that song suck. (And if thinking that all Elton John music sounds the same makes me homophobic, then just call me "Kirk Cameron.")
But there's a bigger picture. Eminem's problem is not just homophobia. His lyrics are also misogynistic. Eminem doesn't hate gay people. He hates women.
A part of society still has a lingering hatred of gay people because a part of society associates homosexuality with women. And so many people have a hatred, a dislike, a disgust, a contempt, for women. Note the correlation between people in society that are the most oppressive towards women with people who are the most homophobic. I bet you'll find that men in prison for abusing women or raping women or murdering women are also the most homophobic people in society. I think you'll find a correlation between countries that are the most oppressive towards women with countries that are the most homophobic. Nations where women have no rights, where women are not allowed to show their faces- these are the same places that are the most intolerant towards gay people. In parts of the world where women are given the most opportunity- these are the same societies that are the most progressive towards the rights of gay people. Look at the United States. Despite what you've heard, gay rights are not a product of Will & Grace. Rather, they're a product of Grace. As women have gained equality in society, we're becoming more accepting of homosexuality. Think about the men you know that say the most hate-filled, vile things about women. I bet they're also the most homophobic people you know.
Okay. I'm getting a little serious here. Just get through the next paragraph and then I'll throw you a few of my random, really funny tweets.
What is really happening when a man is having sex with another man? He is being submissive to another man. And this idea is so abhorrent to so many people, it's so intolerable, it's so offensive because women are the ones who are supposed to be submissive -- not men. Women are the ones who are supposed to lower themselves to men. Women are supposed to demean themselves to men. Women are supposed to be submissive to men. For a man to "lower" himself to that of a woman? That is outrageous to so many people. Why is it so demeaning, so bizarre, so comical for a man to wear a dress? Because that's what women do. And for a man to act like a woman -- for a man to lower himself, to demean himself, to degrade himself by acting like a woman -- is simply unacceptable to the millions of Americans raised on traditional gender roles.
Okay -- I promised you some funny tweets.
I'm very close to my kids, and they know that they can always email about ANYTHING.
It's wonderful when people adopt shelter dogs. But I'd prefer to have my own biological pets.
I always carry a magazine with me just in case I get buried alive.
2005 just called. It wants its "'something' just called; it wants its 'thing that we associate with that specific something'" back.
Gay men are ostracized because society associates them with women. And society still oppresses women. Gay women are ostracized because society associates them with men. And insecure men see this as an infringement on their territory. I suspect that the men who feel the most anger towards lesbians are the same men who are opposed to female police officers, female construction workers, and all of the other traditionally male Village People occupations.
Interestingly, though, society still associates gay people with the opposite sex, but this has nothing to do with real life. I've known lots of gay men. None of them, even the more flamboyant ones, remind me of any woman I've ever known. Eh, maybe former First Lady Barbara Bush. But even that's a stretch. Ellen DeGeneres has short hair. But she doesn't act like a man. Ellen purports to be a big Justin Bieber fan. No adult man is a Justin Bieber fan... though, speaking on behalf of all adult men, we do hope he gets back together with Selena Gomez. She was good for him.
Sometimes, liberal straight people are a bit too enthusiastic about their tolerance for gay people. These are the sort of hipsters who want everyone to know they have gay friends. But I don't think gay people want you to like them as a condescending, political statement. Gay people want friends for the same reason we all want friends -- so that we'll have people to read our Facebook statuses.
Some proponents of gay rights are very concerned that you'll think they themselves are gay. It's the "I'm not gay, but I believe in your right..." way of showing support. I have been told I "look" gay, whatever that means. I'm okay with that. But just to avoid confusion, the first thing I say to every woman I meet is "I want to have sex with you." This caused some conflict when I worked at the retirement home.
I've known a few gay jerks. Most gay people I've met, however, have been very nice. From my own personal experience, in fact, gay people tend to be nicer than straight people. I meet a lot of awful heterosexuals. Though, in fairness, I spend a lot of time at the Ed Hardy outlet store.
If gay people tend to be nicer and more compassionate and empathetic than heterosexuals, it's probably because they have a greater awareness of how irrational hatred feels. Yeah, we all agree that the idiots from the Westboro Baptist Church, who picket funerals with homophobic signs, are a joke. But that doesn't make their vile words any less hurtful. Or maybe socialization has nothing to do with it, and gay people are just genetically kind-hearted. It comes back around to the question of nature versus nurture. Is being nice a choice, or are gay people just born that way?
Homophobia frustrates me. But I don't think gay people themselves care whether or not homophobic people "accept" them. I think gay people just want homophobic people to not "care" about them so much. I could be wrong about that. But here's what I'm sure about; that gay people exist has no effect on your life. And there are so many actual, real, serious issues to be concerned about. Like -- is it just me, or is How I Met Your Mother starting to get really tedious? They should've pulled the plug last season.