Jun 21, 2024, 06:24AM

Homophobia is Gay

Closets and their coward gay homophobes are too dark for me.

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This is my third in a gay series for Pride Month; in preceding weeks I covered gay baseball and gay zombies. Today I’m going to discuss homophobes. If there’s one thing we see in the streets this month besides all the rainbow-glitter miniskirts, wigs, roller skates and floats, it’s the parade of homophobia, perhaps most evident in a June tsunami of social media comments. It’s unfortunately time for the annual vandalism against Pride flags, as homophobes act destructively at the historic Stonewall National Monument in New York and at least nine other states.

Apparently homophobes aren’t intelligent enough to realize that destroying symbols of Pride only motivates queers to display more of them, inspiring the very reason such exhibits exist in the first place: to counter the hate in the hearts of so many.

But what’s the reason for that hate? Why can’t people let others live, scroll on, go about their lives not paying attention to what goes on in the lives or bedrooms of others? Is it a seething desire to stand on the bully pulpit and look down at another, preaching a false gospel of a violently-thumped Bible; fictionalized, mistranslated and misinterpreted by men centuries later for financial and political gain? There’s that. But you could throw Bible verses right back at them about “judge not lest ye be judged,” casting first stones, loving one another as God so loved you—throw a whole Bible full of rainbow right back at the homophobe “Christians.” The Bible’s a book that reminds me of the scene in Airplane where they ask Johnny, the queer air traffic control assistant, “What can you make of it?” and he says “well I can make a hat, or a broach…”

What if all the hostility from homophobes results from hiding their own repressed, closeted homosexuality?

"Sometimes people are threatened by gays and lesbians because they are fearing their own impulses, in a sense they 'doth protest too much,'" Richard Ryan told LiveScience. "In addition, it appears that sometimes those who would oppress others have been oppressed themselves."

The study showed that participants who reported their heterosexuality despite having hidden same-sex desires were also the most likely to show hostility toward gay individuals, including self-reported anti-gay attitudes, endorsement of anti-gay policies and discrimination such as supporting harsher punishments for homosexuals. Another study showed evidence of homosexual arousal of homophobic individuals.

The research may help explain the underpinnings of anti-gay bullying and hate crimes. People in denial about their sexual orientation, perhaps a denial fostered by authoritarian and homophobic parents, may feel a threat from other gay and lesbian individuals. Raising kids in homophobic settings can lead to tragic and deadly consequences for someone who learns it’s not acceptable to be yourself.

At a minimum, homophobes are often miserable, angry people, whatever the reason. Are we supposed to feel sorry for them because they were raised by also-homophobic parents? Is it okay for racism to be carried down through the generations? Breaking generational cycles of abuse, racism, and homophobia is what Generation X, Y & Z are here to do.

Personally, in coming out at age 53 two years ago, I experience homophobia at varying levels. I had “an unfollowing” initially when I announced it on social media, so the trash takes itself out. One of my closest (now former) friends said to me, “marriage is between a man and a woman,” and in the most hurtful instance, I lost my first girlfriend to the closet—she’d never come out publicly, but after years of what seemed to be a beautiful love story, (but behind closed doors only), she suddenly announced (while in bed with me) that she was going back to the men who’d only ever abused her and that I “shouldn’t have fallen in love with a straight girl.” Apparently she’d peered out of the closet long enough for her gay social experiment and to break my heart, but not long enough to handle the idea of posting a photo together with the woman she said she loved on her Facebook page. Closets and their coward gay homophobes are too dark for me.


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