Homophobic men and Misogyny–do they go hand in hand?

From DED Space, a very interesting post and personal musing on the psychological fears of homophobic men and their attitudes to not only to Gay men but women as well. It’s all about the fear of not being masculine and being associated with anything in the least bit feminine.

Male homophobia=misogyny

It has always seemed to me that there are a lot more homophobic men than women. Women who hate gays tend to be those who were told to do so by their churches, but with men, fear of male homosexuality cuts a much longer and wider path.

And this brings me to a subject I don’t think gets enough discussion: Men who freak out over men being together in a romantic/sexual relationship freak out because for them, it all comes down to their own fear of being someone’s butt-boy. Which would be really humiliating and would turn a man into something truly loathesome–a woman.

The fear of being made “a woman” by another man will send an otherwise shallow and apathetic man into a letter-writing, Focus on the Family-contributing, Republican-voting lunatic. Show me a man who hates gay males and I’ll show you a man who despises women.

I think it does have some very sobering and valid points. Granted from pure empirical evidence and not knowing every single homophobic guy in the world (I personally know far too many unfortunately), I’ve seen this hyper-phobia and misogynist attitude displayed by homophobic men. They despise Gay men out of the fear of themselves becoming “the woman” or “the feminine” in a sexual relationship or social setting, and they long for their women to be submissive so they can reaffirm their traditional masculinity and manhood. If they become “the woman” or “the feminine” in a relationship or social setting, they are no longer a man and they loose their “power.” Traditional masculinity is valued as powerful and dominant, while traditional femininity is associated with weakness and submission. Traditional femininity solely exists to reaffirm the traditional masculinity’s power and dominance. Homophobic men who treasure traditional masculinity (and even hyper-masculinity) view the relationship between Gay men to be unnatural because there is no woman or feminine being to reaffirm the masculinity and manhood–the so called “power” aspect is missing. Pretty damn insecure, but I’ve seen it before and we all see it in our culture. “Who gets to be the ‘man’ and who gets to be the ‘woman’ to make the guy feel better about his insecure self?” What a miserable relationship that must be.

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86 Responses to Homophobic men and Misogyny–do they go hand in hand?

  1. 1
    ginmar says:

    They despise homosexuality because they have such a primtive view of sex. One person is passive and one person is active. The active partner is the doer and cannot be tainted by the acts performed—he’s doing them to the other person. Sex is not an activity one performs with another person—it’s all about doing it to them. Once sex is an act ‘done’ to another person, it’s not that big a step toward rape, either, and explains why all the taint there goes on the victim.

    They view gay men as would-be women. Women are the scum of the earth to these guys because they’re recepticles, and gay men are worse—they’re voluntarily giving up their status as men.

    If some guy could ‘do’ them, they’d have to face what they’ve done to women. They’d become women, and they think women are the lowest of the low.

  2. 2
    Anne says:

    Well said, ginmar.

  3. 3
    Decnavda says:

    This is a good post, but there is a word I was surprised not to find in it – rape.

    I did an independent study in law school on this subject, writing what amounted to a master’s thesis. I was specifically looking for the origins of legal repression of homosexuality. It turns out there was very little repression of lesbianism prior to the 20th century, and all of the repression of male homosexuality had to do with sodomy. At one point in my research, I read Dowrkin’s Intercourse and got the epiphany. My understanding of Intercourse was that Dworkin thought that sex was natually rape, but more importantly, that this was not radical, but the TRADITIONAL view of sex. Consider the famous statement of the California state Senator to the feminists lobbying to criminalize marital rape: “But if you can’t rape your wife, who can you rape?” Was this traditionalist’s view of sex any different from the view conservatives “smear” Dworkin for having?

    Foucault’s History of Sex Part I revealed that while male homosexuality was common in the Greco-Roman culture, it always involved a man of superior status “using” a young man of inferior status, and writers of the time considered this a big problem for someone who would eventually be a citizen to be used this way for sex. The Greco-Roman view of sex was also very violent, with rape being Zues’s favorite hobby.

    Essentially, the development of homophobia in the West was a cultural advancement: It’s purpose was protect men from rape.

    Feminism is therefor a necessary precusor to gay rights. We have to accept that no one deserves to be raped before there is no longer a cultural need for homophobia. Otherwise, we risk going back to the Greco-Roman view of sex, which was worse than what the American tradtionalists are defending.

  4. 4
    Tuomas says:

    The original post and the comment by ginmar are both very true. I have both observed it in others, and when I was younger I feared being labeled “gay” or a “feminine” very much (And I was in fact sometimes labeled with those slurs, and unfortunately I did some labeling myself). I now realize that this is insecurity manifesting…

  5. 5
    Tuomas says:

    And I agree that it is very much a cultural construct.

  6. 6
    Ol Cranky says:

    “Who gets to be the ‘man’ and who gets to be the ‘woman’ to make the guy feel better about his insecure self?”? What a miserable relationship that must be.

    Miserable for the woman that is, as the men who must feel/live this way cannot fathom (or would not tolerate) an egalitarian relationship. They are too unwilling to look at who they are (0r, more accurately, view themselves honestly) because intellectual/emotional self-deceipt is preferable than honest evaluation. It doesn’t matter that they’re insecure, it matters that they’re in control and can dominate another. In all fairness, men are not the only ones with this characteristic/stereotypical behavior or denial of their engagement in this behavior (there are plenty of demanding naggy women who fit this bill as well), however, when a man openly exhibits this behavior it is widely condoned as appropriate by segments in of our society (those same segments who also choose to impose their view of what’s acceptable for society on the rest of us most likely because of their societal insecurity).

  7. 7
    Q Grrl says:

    I agree with everything said, but this:

    It has always seemed to me that there are a lot more homophobic men than women.

    which is really an tangent, I suppose. Myself, I have experienced more frequent and more virulent homophobia coming from women.

  8. 8
    mythago says:

    There’s a lot more pressure on men to be loudly and openly homophobic, lest they be thought gay themselves.

  9. 9
    Janine says:

    I’m convinced that another cause of homophobia stems from the huge number of men who, as children, experimented sexually with boys. It’s a normal part of childhood that our lovely, repressive society turns into something ugly.

    Being enculturated to view those experiences negatively, they rail the loudest and are the most agressive against that which they fear in themselves – the homosexual and the feminine.

  10. 10
    Dave says:

    I hope I don’t get censored again because I don’t meet someone’s unknown criteria for being allowed to reply to posts on this site. Of course I disagree with the premises, which I think is a stretch. As a humanist I try to empathies with different people. I recognize that many of my peers don’t take the trouble, which is wrong.
    Personally, I don’t feel threatened by rape. Except for the mildest, elliptical attempts to approach me, gays have never bothered me. I really think most of them don’t like me, since people I know are gay were never very friendly to me.
    I support gay’s rights to do their thing in private without molestation by law enforcement officers which is a human rights matter, but not gay marriage. Why not gay marriage? Darn, it is just a feeling it isn’t right, thus irrational, just like it is irrational to oppose women’s voluntary participation in pornography or prostitution without all sort of mental gymnastics. After all it is a matter of free choice. Buy don’t ask me to ratify it. It just is unappetizing to me. And I won’t ask you folks to ratify pornography. It’s live and let live.

  11. 11
    shiloh says:

    I agree that homophobia and misogyny are generally connected, and I think rape is a big part of it. If a guy accepts the idea tha men can rape women because their sex drive is so great or so important it’s justified, then the idea that men sexually desire men is terrifying.

    And I agree with ginmar that a big part of it is viewing sex as an event between people who are profoundly unequal. I’ll go further – I think a lot of homophobic men are less threatened by gay couplings where one partner is “swishy” and the other “butch”, and considerably more threatened by gay partnerships where both partners are “just an average guy.” In other words, they’re considerably more threatened by the idea of a romantic relationship between equals than they are by a relationship that at least “tries” to mimic what they view as the natural thing; sexual relationships where one partner is considerably more powerful than the other.

    Camille Bacon-Smith reports that in a class studying Haldeman’s The Forever War, when she asked why the characters in the book accepted homosexual women more easily than homosexual men, “the men in the class agreed that they felt personally threatened by the possibility of homoseuxal attack from men and presumed the protagonist would likewise feel threatened. They assumed the women would feel the same way and were quite surprised when none of the women in the class expressed any fear of lesbian assault, and in fact found the very idea bizarre.”

    I’ve never known a woman who was seriously homophobic, but I’ve known a lot of men who are. OTOH, I’ve known a lot of women who considered themselves practially gay rights activists for writing women’s porn staring two males, which always struck me as a little suspect. Particularly when you consider that most gay guys who run across the stuff find the sex and the relationships laughably unreal. Some women seem to do this gays-as-pets sort of thing that isn’t homophobic but isn’t exactly healthy, either.

  12. 12
    Sarah in Chicago says:

    It’s fairly well accepted amongst a lot of gender theorists that homophobia is primarily about gender performance. In fact, as in the last 30 years or so as ‘appropriate’ masculinity has gotten narrower and narrower, it’s not really surprising that gay men are seen as such a threat. What gay men do is make concrete for these guys all their fears, and being even remotely associated with them is something that they need to avoid, or if they can’t then overcompensate, as much as is possible.

    If a guy is comforable and solid in the sense of his masculinity and manhood then the existence of gay men shouldn’t have any effect on him.

    Oh, and Dave -

    Honestly not wanting you to ratify jack. Me marrying the woman of my dreams has absolutely no effect against your world or your relationships. In fact, really don’t care what your thoughts on it are. Perhaps the fact that as you said your problem with SSM is one that is “just a feeling” and hence doesn’t really have a rational basis is a clue to you that maybe your feelings on the matter are hardly unbiased and unbigoted. Just a thought … live and let live sounds wonderful, how about you don’t stop me from getting married and I won’t stop you?

  13. 13
    audio-visual says:

    Dave wrote:

    As a humanist I try to empathies with different people. I recognize that many of my peers don’t take the trouble, which is wrong.

    That’s nice. Try to imagine what it’s like not to be able to marry the person you love because it makes some people uncomfortable, eh?

    Why not gay marriage? Darn, it is just a feeling it isn’t right, thus irrational

    Hey, a anti-SSM guy admits his real motives! Cool.

    just like it is irrational to oppose women’s voluntary participation in pornography or prostitution without all sort of mental gymnastics.

    … *eyes roll* …

    After all it is a matter of free choice. Buy don’t ask me to ratify it. It just is unappetizing to me. And I won’t ask you folks to ratify pornography. It’s live and let live.

    So, are you pro-legalizing same-sex marriage, as long as no-one ask you to approve of the marriages themselves?

    shiloh wrote:

    I’ve known a lot of women who considered themselves practially gay rights activists for writing women’s porn staring two males, which always struck me as a little suspect. [...] Some women seem to do this gays-as-pets sort of thing that isn’t homophobic but isn’t exactly healthy, either.

    Yeah, I’ve come across that sort of person – the thing that bothers me most about them is that they seem to buy in to the ‘gay men are always swishy and fun and fab’ thing at least as much as homophobes do. I am not a gay man, but if I were, I think I’d be quite offended by people who stereotyped me and then claimed to be great, open-minded folks who are very ‘in’ with gay culture.

  14. 14
    jstevenson says:

    “Foucault’s History of Sex Part I revealed that while male homosexuality was common in the Greco-Roman culture”

    Homosexuality during the time of Socrates allowed men to maintain power and pass power and knowlege to another generation. The apprentice or squire was able to learn from his elder and soon became an elder himself with his own apprentice and scribe. The only problem with this scenario was that women were left out of this powerful structure. Men shared their own laughs, own stories and their own understandings. The young boys learned from the older men. They especially learned how to enjoy men’s love.

    I don’t think it is fear of being a woman, I think it is fear of women. Men will garner more power if they are able to bond sexually, openly without the fear of persecution from women. Men can consolidate power, not only in their son. Meaning men would not have to sleep with a woman with the hope of having a son to pass their wealth and power. They could pass their wealth power and knowlege to their apprentice in exchange for his love.

    Allowing men to openly enjoy each other’s love; it seems like such a good thing. Why would men give up the chance to retain power and exclude women from the backroom deals. Isn’t it part of nature, the desire to retain power? Why would men get rid of something that would require them to find someone else to fill the void of intimacy created when our apprentices and squires were no longer allowed to? I wonder how we could go from a society that openly accepts homosexuality to one that outlaws it in such a short span of time. What was the catalyst for making male homosexuality, something that was lauded, something that is now causing posts regarding homophobia.

  15. 15
    Decnavda says:

    jstevenson-
    Have you read Foucault’s work? The “lost gay male paradise” version of ancient Greek society that you describe is the myth that I was expecting to read about in History of Sex, only to have Foucault throw servious cold water on it. Greco-Roman male homosexuality BAD, very, very, BAD, and considered a problem by the writers of the time. The older men raped the young boys, who, yes, learned in turn how to rape young boys when they became men. (Of course, Greco-Roman heterosexuality was just as bad or probably worse, but not considered a problem because the writers were mostly men.) The catalyst for turning against male homosexuality (and, until the 20th century, ONLY male homosexuality) was the horrible, violent nature of sex, essentially rape, as the culture was taught to see it.

  16. 16
    Julian Elson says:

    Wow. Really fascinating stuff, Decnavda.

  17. 17
    mythago says:

    Buy don’t ask me to ratify it. It just is unappetizing to me.

    Well, here I was all set to ratify your pornography. But if you’re going to be so ridiculous as to say that other people should be banned from doing anything you find “unappetizing,” then fuck you, your porn should go away too.

  18. 18
    Josh Jasper says:

    But hey, I like porn. Don’t take my porn away!

  19. 19
    nexy jo says:

    What was the catalyst for making male homosexuality, something that was lauded, something that is now causing posts regarding homophobia.

    christianity.

  20. 20
    Dave says:

    Reply to Sarah an Audio-visual
    A somewhat far out analogy may explain my feelings about SSM. The woman next door gets in her car and backs out of the driveway running over and killing her cat Tabby. She takes the cat inside. Later I see her and say that I am sorry her cat died. “Yes”? she says”? I was going to the grocery store to get some meat for the family dinner tonight, but now I won’t need to. I’m roasting Tabby”? Now don’t ask me to explain why, but this just doesn’t seem right. Due to libertarian principles it should be legal and really, I guess so should gay marriage.(I’m making progress)

  21. 21
    Josh Jasper says:

    Far out indeed. So far out you make no sense whatsoever.

    Getting upset at interracial couples makes just as much sense as getting upset at same sex couples. Chances are you don’t want to think of yourself that way, but that’s pretty muich the same as what you’re doing. You’re the same sort of person who was in favor of banning interracial marriages.

    If you’ve changed your mind, good for you. But you still make no sense.

  22. 22
    Sarah in Chicago says:

    Woah -

    Okay, I think that officially counts as the most f’ed up example I have ever read against?/for? SSM.

    Maybe you should ask yourself why SSM equates on some level in your mind to rare feline with a rosemary garnish; what is it for you that gay sex doesn’t really bother you, but marriage of two people of the same sex does? And is it just two people of the same sex, or is is two men, or two women? What disturbs you more?

    Personally I’m warying of accepting anything on the basis of libertarian principles as the assumptions behind that perspective don’t tend to exist in reality. I prefer to look at it from a social justice human rights perspective (after all, those countries with those kinds of societal mindsets are the ones granting SSM).

  23. 23
    Sarah in Chicago says:

    oh, but as a follow on that always occurs to you just as you hit the ‘submit’ button …

    a social justice human rights model presumes the equality of every human being. If misogyny is, as we have been discussing here, at fundamental issue with the placing of women on the same level as you as a man, then misogyny is incompatible with such a model. So, does misogyny then lead to taking issue with other aspects of the social justice human rights model? Will the misogynist then tend to also be racist? Is that, and other ‘ists’ more likely for him? Just a thought …

  24. 24
    Dan S. says:

    “A somewhat far out analogy may explain my feelings about SSM. . .”

    Huh. Still trying to make sense of that. Um, he has trouble with the thought of a woman eating puss . . . ok, ok, nevermind, sorry . . .

    The only way I can read it is that he sees SSM as something which doesn’t provide any clear grounds for legal opposition (it’s not as if the woman was about to cook a child, or had *intentionally* killed her cat), but nevertheless makes him feel uncomfortable, due to ingrained – if non-universal, and apparently arbitrary – social beliefs and practice. Which sounds very honest, really, if that is the intention.

  25. 25
    Dan S. says:

    But what I meant to say was the answer to the title question, “Homophobic men and Misogyny”“do they go hand in hand?”, would of course be a violent and angry “No! Hand in hand? You think we’re ^%&*ing gay or something??”

  26. 26
    Dave says:

    “Getting upset at interracial couples makes just as much sense as getting upset at same sex couples.”? Josh Jasper.
    Upset ? no. , Notice it, yes. I can’t help it. But that doesn’t mean I’m going to join the KKK. Racial and sexual issues are seared into our minds. Why?
    There are primal contradictions, contradictory feelings revolving around today’s issue of the issue of unfairness to our gay and racially different brothers and sisters and the desire for concepts of stability in society.
    I do object to the comparison of gay issues to racial issues which demeans the struggle for racial equality. What are the differences between races? Five or six genes and a lot social factors. Hundreds of years of deplorable practices, slavery, genocide and other unspeakable injustices have been committed on the basis of racial and ethnic differences. Equivalence of gay and straights? It seems like a new synthetic thing that was just made up recently. Did you ever hear of to princes or two princesses getting married? Did cave men raid other cave men’s camps to capture a man to marry? They may have sodomised the other cave men before they carried away the women but, Marriage?? Get real. It used to be that marriage was instituted to enable social continuity of families by uniting man and woman in a beneficial institution. Now gay marriage is being promoted so that gays don’t have to feel that they are thought of differently and thus discriminated against. If it makes them feel better, OK, let them mimic heterosexual marriage, while at the same time scorning everything else about traditional old mom and pop who have remained faithful for 50 years.

    Sara. “What is it for you that gay sex doesn’t really bother you, but marriage of two people of the same sex does? And is it just two people of the same sex, or is two men, or two women? What disturbs you more?”?
    I think was a person does with a consenting adult in privacy is no ones business, and I don’t want to know about it. Marriage is a public recognition of commitment, and asks the support of all society to uphold. Of course nowadays it is a failing institution, which gays never cease saying. Are they are going to help it by trashing it further? It tacitly demands sexual exclusivity. Will males getting married to males increase the degree of sexual faithfulness in their milieu? If so, maybe it is beneficial. If not why do they expect to get out of it? Years ago gay males only wanted to be left alone, a laudable and fair request. Now they demand societies approving embrace. What will they do in return? For women, I think gay marriage is going to be very beneficial. Marriage is something that is beneficial to society because it protects children and encourages men to be good to their women and children, counter to their promiscuous nature. Male marriage may turn out to be a farce in the long run. Tacit female marriages already seem to work well ( I know little about this) and if institutionalized should work very well. But every one wants to what they can’t have. So let ‘em have it. That will teach them.
    Specifically, I have heard it said that gay female activity doesn’t bother men as much as male activity. I do agree that TV pictures of lesbian sex don’t bother me as much as male homosexual images. The only trouble is my wife makes me change channels when there is any lesbian stuff on TV. Male queer imagery appeals to what ever percentage of queer is in you and you don’t want to think about that. But if it is just about platonic male friendship, it doesn’t bother me, just no graphic stuff.
    Sara- Different ” ists”? the same? Are all bigots cut out of the same piece of cloth? To a certain extent yes. You have certain authoritarian types who are born bigots. But you also have culturally determined clusters. You might have a homophobic wife beater who hates Jews , Catholics and Blacks.
    Or an America hating socialist who would like to outlaw all guns, thinks Lenin was God and has an impervious justification for their perfect world social justice program ,no compromise and no recognition of any costs , trade offs or realities.
    You could also have people like Karl Marx, Rousseau and many other famous and respected intellectuals who treated their wives and children like shit and were violent, mean, racists and homophobes. These people are remembered because of their teachings about the social justice human rights model presuming the equality of each human being not their behavior

  27. 27
    Richard G. Buchanan says:

    The second letter to the editor in today’s NY Times said it all. The head of the Little League in which a young lady pitched a perfect game said, in effect, he would hate to be a boy who had to face her. No compliment for the achievement of such a rare achievement. Sexism starts early and is reiforced early.

  28. 28
    Amanda says:

    Dave’s comment is perfect proof of the thesis. By linking his love of porn and distaste for gays like that, he all but came out and said, “Dammit, people, women are for fucking, not men.”

  29. 29
    Amanda says:

    I think was a person does with a consenting adult in privacy is no ones business, and I don’t want to know about it. Marriage is a public recognition of commitment, and asks the support of all society to uphold.

    Also, this is a pretty good example of how people’s main objection to gay marriage is usually that they feel that it makes them think of gay men having sex. I would suggest, though, thinking about the porn thing (straight porn usually has some scene of women having sex with each other), that one objection to lesbian marriage is the public affirmation of their right to a private relationship is probably offensive to those that think that women having sex with each other is only justified by the presence of a camera.

  30. 30
    mythago says:

    There are primal contradictions, contradictory feelings revolving around today’s issue of the issue of unfairness to our gay and racially different brothers and sisters and the desire for concepts of stability in society.

    Can anyone else parse this? I sure can’t.

  31. 31
    Kim (basement variety!) says:

    Dan S. – Thank you for your delightful little injections of humor into the subject. Good stuff for a giggle.

  32. 32
    Kim (basement variety!) says:

    Hundreds of years of deplorable practices, slavery, genocide and other unspeakable injustices have been committed on the basis of racial and ethnic differences.

    Dave, while many examples could be provided to ‘answer’ this one, the one I’m going to go with is Nazi Germany. Homosexuals were absolutely singled out as one of the targets to exterminate.

    I’m troubled by your comparison as well because it seems to negate the idea or reality of hate crimes and discrimination that occurs to gay people, or to dismiss it as unimportant because others have had it worse in the past. I’ve quoted this on another thread before, but it comes in handy a lot:

    “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere”
    – Martin Luther King, Jr.

    You don’t have to feel comfortable with homosexuality to support their right to be free from discrimination.

    Now gay marriage is being promoted so that gays don’t have to feel that they are thought of differently and thus discriminated against.

    My husband’s mother is gay and married. I have two mother-in-laws. The commitment they made to each other, both legally and spiritually wasn’t done in the spirit of petulance that you describe above, but instead because they are partners in life – no different from men and women that choose to do the same. While it may not feel comfortable for you, I don’t understand how you can justify cruelty and discrimination due to discomfort. And yes, Dave, it is cruel to insert yourself into the commitment of other loving families that could well suffer due to the lack of rights that civil marriage grants. My husband and I feel reassured that Kate and Tink are married; there aren’t any grey areas that could occur down the line due to lack of legalization should one of them fall sick, or sadly die.

    You seem really genuine about wanting to consider the issue fairly, and what I’d suggest is to talk to some gay folks in committed partnerships. Allow yourself to see them as you would a male/female partnership and then see what differences you are able to come up with. I think you’ll be surprised at just how similar gay relationships are to straight ones outside of the bedroom.

    Of course nowadays it is a failing institution, which gays never cease saying. Are they are going to help it by trashing it further?

    I’m not sure if you are aware how bigoted this comment sounds. In a thread that occurred a few weeks ago, someone made a great statement about their gay marriage; They mentioned that they saw their relationship as the same as the person they debated with; just as worthy of respect, just as worthy of protection and if I recall, filled with just as much love. Granted that’s a paraphrasing, but you get the gist. I’m unsure how you can grok gay marriages fully if you hold such contempt for them, to go so far as to say that they diminish the state of your own marriage.

    The intent of every gay couple I know that has gotten married is not because as you claim they want to disrespect marriage, but in fact because they respect marriage as a commitment that helps nurture a family. Once people choose and commit to being a family, and since culture tends to agree that family units are a helpful and stabilizing affect on society in general, I think it is not only proper, but our responsibility to recognize and nurture and help these families create a solid and stable foundation.

    Anyways, Dave, I think you’re half way there. I hope you’re able to set aside your personal sqeam’s for the sake of justice everywhere.

  33. 33
    Josh Jasper says:

    Dave:

    I do object to the comparison of gay issues to racial issues which demeans the struggle for racial equality. What are the differences between races? Five or six genes and a lot social factors. Hundreds of years of deplorable practices, slavery, genocide and other unspeakable injustices have been committed on the basis of racial and ethnic differences. Equivalence of gay and straights? It seems like a new synthetic thing that was just made up recently.

    Quite frankly, this is because you’re horribly ignorant about the treatment of homosexuals in history. Throughout history we’ve been discriminated against. We’re absolutley the last minority to get real civil rights, and we’re discriminated against horribly on a global scale. Far worse than race. Your claim that the unspeakable injustices were just made up is empty, when confronted with the truth of history. Homosexuals were routinley exectuted when discovered, tortured, financialy rouned, and jailed in early America, leading up until the 1960′s.

    And then there’s outside of the US, where homosexuals are still tortured by police states.

    So don’t tell me this is made up. You’re don’t want to go there.

    Did you ever hear of to princes or two princesses getting married? Did cave men raid other cave men’s camps to capture a man to marry? They may have sodomised the other cave men before they carried away the women but, Marriage?? Get real. It used to be that marriage was instituted to enable social continuity of families by uniting man and woman in a beneficial institution.

    No, actualy, it was created for the benefit of men, and to the detriment of women

    Now gay marriage is being promoted so that gays don’t have to feel that they are thought of differently and thus discriminated against. If it makes them feel better, OK, let them mimic heterosexual marriage, while at the same time scorning everything else about traditional old mom and pop who have remained faithful for 50 years.

    Excuse me? I have no idea what you think we’re doing, but contempt for any 50 year old couple has nothing to do with it. I think you’d better explain yourself there, because it sounds like you’re claiming some sort of agenda, in that we’re somehow incapable of having 50 year commited relationships on our own, and that’s pretty damn insulting.

    Kim:

    I’m troubled by your comparison as well because it seems to negate the idea or reality of hate crimes and discrimination that occurs to gay people, or to dismiss it as unimportant because others have had it worse in the past.

    But others have *not* had it worse. It’s a lie that they have. A lie that the rligious right created. Se, right now, gay people are doing better than they have, but we’re still worse off politicaly, socialy, and in many cases economicaly. We’re smart about how we live, but if you’re an out gay man in many areas, your employment prospects are pretty dismal. Imagine an out man trying to get into pro sports. Or into construction work in Alabama. Or in the armed forces.

    Hets have benefits. We have impediments.

    That we’ve gotten as far as we have is not a testament to how easy it was. It’s a monument to how adaptable, politicaly smart, and determined we are. We worked hard, suffered and bled for our rights. Having some ignorant perosn tell us we’re making that up is insulting. It’s also easily refuted, but we don’t get that chance that often, because the refutations are not allowed on Fox news, and are already out there in the liberal press.

  34. 34
    Sarah in Chicago says:

    To Amanda and Kim -

    thanks for saying precisely what I wanted to say about Dave’s piece. The thing that makes me sigh is that he probably doesn’t realise exactly what he is saying in this regard.

    Dave, please read over both what Amanda wrote and what Kim wrote, and thinking about what you have said. I won’t repeat it because while it’s precisely what I was thinking as I read your piece, well, I shouldn’t hog up the bandwidth just saying what has already been said *smile* It’s not that we think you shouldn’t be able to hold the opinions that you do, rather instead if you chose to argue them as being from a rational basis, then we are going to show the rather large fallacies involved.

    Just as one point though; there ARE similarities between how racial/ethnic minorities have been treated and how gays and lesbians have been treated, historically and contemporarily. Are they the same? Hell no. But that they aren’t precisely the same isn’t a reason for not looking for the connections and overlaps (cutting edge international/third-world feminists are looking to such strategies in a more general sense). Leaving aside the manner in which feminisation works as a dehumanising vehicle for both, I study in the area of violence and gender/sexuality, principally hate/bias crimes, and we find similarities all over the place. And that’s just one space.

    Look back at your words and see how they do in fact reflect a bigotry and perpetuate prejudice and inequality. Most of us here have had to do similarly when it comes to our own prejudices (such as me, as a white woman, how I benefit from and perpetuate an inherently racist society, for instance … not perfect at it mind you, not by a long shot, but working on it). I think one of the things I do love about being a feminist is not just the continual critical revisiting of society we do; but also the continual critical revisiting of self we have to do. Do we all do it? No unfortunately, but the really good ones show us how those two facets go hand in hand.

  35. 35
    Dave says:

    Thanks for the relatively kind treatment you have given this old Neanderthal. I may have time to write a more lengthy reply later.

  36. 36
    Linnaeus says:

    I’ve heard, vaguely, that there is a strain of misogyny in certain segments of gay male subculture (if I can use that term). How accurate is this? Has anyone experienced or observed it?

  37. 37
    Josh Jasper says:

    I’ve never seen it, and I’ve been an activist for about ten years.

  38. 38
    Dave says:

    I’m not sure that some of the rebuttals I read made much more sense than the story about eating the cat. I am sure I accidentally stepped on some toes. For example, Amanda- About gay men’s marriage and sex. Why do gay men need to get married? I f they were adopting children, I could see it. (I don’t oppose gay adoption because having parents is good for children, making me a lot more liberal than some.) I would envisage gay men living together like straight guys living in a frat house. Except that they would have sex sometimes. But they would also be free to date other people. I wouldn’t even care whether I was married myself, but my wife and kids would. A marriage license is just a piece of paper. And I don’t run around. When women and children are involved, that’s when you need marriage. I do see that some legal issues need to be addressed for domestic partners.

    But Josh, if marriage was created ” for the benefit of men, and to the detriment of women”? then you should be against participating in it, unless you have to. Also you and Kim are wrong to say that I care nothing about suffering gays have endured. Since it is a recent subject of research, God only knows how much will ever be known. I suppose everyone that is perceived as different has suffered some, but other societies may have been more tolerant, especially of bisexuality. I don’t know. I clearly stated that gays should be left alone. That is all I want. I know of no past society where there was gay marriage, do you? Also, the crack about gays scorning old mom and pop, perhaps I’m wrong to be skeptical, but time will tell. I am just going by the mind set of man. It may work for women. I just can’t escape the feeling that some gays only want to play house so then can break some barrier, then there will be something else.

    Which brings me to mithago-and Sara- Concerning the conflict between, fairness and stability and the question of racism, sexism, equality, etc.. Darn it just seems to Joe Six Pack and me that no matter what you do, this fairness thing just keeps coming. Has anything ever been fair? What is the endpoint? What kind of sissies are people today that all they can do is cry about how something isn’t fair? Now you will accuse me of being pro-unfairness, but there are other factors to be considered and at some point people need to do what my Mom told her demanding kids to do. “Take care of yourself.”? Oh, I recognize that times change, but just wait someday you will wonder yourself, what next! Sarah, I would be interested in knowing how feminization works to dehumanize people under some circumstances. Well, I must go.

  39. 39
    Amanda says:

    Marriage used to be about property transfer, Dave, but now it is about love and the right to create your family and have it socially recognized. If it’s still about male ownership of women, then laws in this country would be very, very different. But legally, a man and woman who are married have equal rights to each other, which means that the logic behind limiting marriage to opposite sex couples, which was that marriage by definiton was between a superior male to an inferior female, doesn’t apply any longer.

    Gay men have children, didn’t you know? One very famous example is Dan Savage, who writes the column Savage Love and has a son with his long-time boyfriend. Dan, incidentally, is legally married to a lesbian he has never kissed or lived with or had sex with or had children with–they got married to demonstrate how ludicrious marriage laws are that any two fools can marry if they have the correct set of genitals, but long time, loving families like his real one don’t have any rights.

    And the notion, by the way, that all men act like frat boys without the presence of women is a very limited view of men. Many men are insulted by the notion that they need women in their lives to control them and make them act like adults, as they should be. And while there are plenty of gay men who have open relationships, it’s certainly not something they all do and it’s none of your business anyway. Straight married couples have open relationships and we still acknowledge their right to be married.

    And none of this, by the way, has shit to do with whether lesbians should marry. Don’t forget the lesbians! (That homophobic men are prone to forgetting lesbians again tells me this is more about the fear of men being fucked than anything else.)

  40. 40
    Dave says:

    But legally, a man and woman who are married have equal rights to each other, which means that the logic behind limiting marriage to opposite sex couples, which was that marriage by definiton was between a superior male to an inferior female, doesn’t apply any longer. -good point
    (That homophobic men are prone to forgetting lesbians again tells me this is more about the fear of men being fucked than anything else.)- looney tune psyhobabble.

  41. 41
    Jasper says:

    Josh Jasper-

    You’ve never heard the term “fish”? Ever?

    (As just one example.)

  42. 42
    Amanda says:

    Why is that psychobabble? You have expressed disgust for “gay” sex, meaning sex between men while at the same time expressing enthusiasm for porn, which has lots and lots and lots of sex between women. Unless you are that one in a million guys who skips those scenes, I’m guessing sex between women doesn’t bother you.

  43. 43
    Josh Jasper says:

    Dave:

    But Josh, if marriage was created ” for the benefit of men, and to the detriment of women”? then you should be against participating in it, unless you have to.

    If? There’s no if about it. Read your history.

    Also you and Kim are wrong to say that I care nothing about suffering gays have endured.

    No, I said that you knew nothign about it. There wouldn’t be aythign wrong with that, except you were trying to claim that the opression of gay people is inconsequential in comparison to the race or religion based civil rights struggles. That was what I objected to. And I proved why you were wrong in stating what you did.

    There’s another well known group of people who’ve denied that atrocities in Europe destroyed a good protion of my family. I get angry at them too.

    Also, the crack about gays scorning old mom and pop, perhaps I’m wrong to be skeptical, but time will tell. I am just going by the mind set of man. It may work for women. I just can’t escape the feeling that some gays only want to play house so then can break some barrier, then there will be something else.

    Again, I don’t need time to tell me these things. Unlike you, I really know gay couples. I know them well enough to know that there are 50 year commited relationships, and your idea that there’s some sinister motive behind it all is just not true.

    You know ewhat you sound like? Some sort of conspiracy theorist.

    Jasper: I’ve heard the term, I’ve just never seen it being used. It sounds apocryphal. I guess there’s a chance that it’s out there, but not at all widespread. Racism, on the other hand, really is aproblem I’ve seen int eh gay world. As much as it is in the straight one, only differently organized.

  44. 44
    mythago says:

    Oh, gosh, yes, I’ve seen and heard it. Plenty. It’s not as bad as it used to be, but bluntly, nothing about being a gay man makes sexist socialization vanish.

  45. 45
    piny says:

    I have no idea why everyone has so far seen fit to be so circumspect with you thus far, Dave, but I admire their patience.

    What kind of a “sissy” are you that the idea of my marriage makes you so squeamish? You would honestly rather a gay man not get to visit his lover in the hospital than that you should have to acknowledge the existence and permanence of their commitment to each other. You want the law to reflect your precious sensibilities, because you’re too much of a wuss to deal with reality. Who’s the coward here? Who’s the weakling? Who’s the delicate one?

    There is nothing strained, logically or socially, about wanting the partnerships that do exist, and that have existed, to be _treated as though they exist._ Gay people are married, and those marriages aren’t any more limited to their bedrooms than straight marriages. It’s not just sex, or even love–it’s a life together, complete with a household and children, with all the messiness and logistical headache that implies. It’s not “sissified” to want that life together to be facilitated by basic recognition under the law; it’s merely sensible, merely responsible. So quit being a finicky little bigot.

  46. 46
    Dave says:

    Amanda:
    I didn’t really express enthusiasm for porn, I just asked for tolerance for it. It’s just a first amendment issue. A lot of it too gross for me, and they aught to be ashamed to produce it. To be honest I do like the cute nude pictures of women, and lesbian scenes are OK, but they could leave it out. The people who make the stuff just have these conventions some of which are silly. They don’t ask me. It’s like Coke, why do they always put in high fructose corn syrup, and never cane sugar, but you don’t have a choice.
    Piney, I have called no one a sissy or any other name. Several writers have hurled profanities at me and now you have resorted to name calling. I appreciate the sensitivity of this issue and am only seeking understanding and trying to communicate my opinions in good humor and honesty.

  47. 47
    piny says:

    >>What kind of sissies are people today that all they can do is cry about how something isn’t fair? >>

    This wasn’t you, then? Because if it was, you did, too, just call marriage activists sissies–a word which is a homophobic slur in and of itself. That’s not sensitive. It certainly is bigoted. And you complained about our “sissiness” while simultaneously admitting that you let your squeamishness set your politics. I have no reason to respond to that with anything but scorn, particularly since you yourself are so scornful of those whiny-baby equal-rights advocates.

    You apparently don’t see it, but the things you’re saying are profoundly offensive–like that analogy you made between eating a beloved pet and marrying one’s husband. Or this: “I would envisage gay men living together like straight guys living in a frat house. Except that they would have sex sometimes. But they would also be free to date other people.” Oh, yeah, that’s a totally accurate, respectful conception of gay marriage. Sensitivity? You’re completely clueless.

  48. 48
    Pseudo-Adrienne says:

    Dave said in Comment #38: “What kind of sissies are people today that all they can do is cry about how something isn’t fair?” (emphasis mine)

    YOU started the name calling! Take responsibility for YOUR words on this thread. I have been monitoring this discussion for awhile (as it is my post) and the only offensive things I’ve seen being hurled around is by YOU!

    I appreciate the sensitivity of this issue and am only seeking understanding and trying to communicate my opinions in good humor and honesty.

    You want sensitivity?…how about you try it yourself when regarding others, before you go around whimpering about your bullshit victimology that dosen’t exist. And some ignorant people think bigoted slurs are just “good humor” too.

    Oh, and the “porno-lesbian sex scenes are okay, but dude-on-dude, no way man,” excuse?! How old are you, fourteen? You sound like a frat boy with that immature “logic.” Sounds like, deep down, you do have a fear of engaging male-on-male sex, as all homophobic men do. Porno-lesbianism is “okay” because it’s women “performing” for men’s sexual gratification–it’s a form of control over women’s sexuality. So homosexual love is only “okay” so long as it gives woefully ignorant and immature guys like you an erection (ie: two “lesbians” going at it just for your viewing pleasure) and doesn’t threaten your sense of what sexual acts are okay?! Puh-leeze! Once again with the “squeamish” argument to defend prejudice. And “lesbianism” in pornography is fake. It’s all acting, and it’s synthetic crap packaged up nicely for guys like you. Lesbian women and their physical acts of love don’t exist for male gratification, though the porno industry tries to make people–especially men like you–think otherwise.

    Now, continue….

  49. 49
    Bill Ware says:

    It’s not just misogyny, it’s submission, and there are religious influences involved.

    Religions which are most distressed by the idea of Same Sex Marriage have a patriarchal structure, one that doesn’t allow women in the top positions of the church hierarchy. Main stream Protestant churches, those who allow female pastors and bishops, are less likely to oppose SSM and may even encourage it. Patriarchal religions also oppose abortion, the right of women to make reproductive choices. The Catholic Church also proscribes the use of artificial birth control, another way to burden women with more children, should the “natural” method fail, making them more dependant on their husbands. The Southern Baptist Convention is more direct in their position on the role of women in marriage, admonishing “wives to submit to their husbands.” They surround this expression with qualifiers, we note, but that in no way diminishes the meaning of the words. Mainstream churches, in contrast, tend to see marriage as a partnership between equals that relies on cooperation rather than coercion, however that coercion is manifest and supported by religious doctrine.

    SSM would be more like the mainstream church’s view of marriage and the antithesis of the patriarchal view. Whether it’s two men or two women, there is no obvious male in charge, submissive female in these situations. When patriarchal churches say that SSM would diminish “traditional” marriage and that children need both a father and a mother as role models, it’s the patriarchal nature of these relationships that they are struggling to maintain. Equal rights for women and marriage rights for lesbians and gays, are both discordant with their patriarchal view of the world.

    A bit more here.

  50. 50
    Jay Sennett says:

    John Jasper and everyone,

    I’ve lived various queer communities for 20 plus years. The last ten of those years I have been living as a man. The previous years were spent living as a lesbian.

    So I’ve had the wonderful experience of being around gay men as a woman and as a man.

    John, gay men are sexist. You’re logic is faulty ~ i.e. just because I haven’t experienced means it doesn’t exist…..

    Gay men have laughed at women, called them fish, “they get so hysterical they bleed every month…” and I could go on.

    Being gay, or trans, for that matter doesn’t make any us special, better or kinder. And for the record, people with disabilities get treated alot shittier by society – gay, straight, queer, trans – than able-bodied gay people do.

    My overall concern about the original post is its unimaginative pitting of straight men against gays and women, albeit feminine gays.

    Thus, we’ve forgotten to note that while the Nazis did indeed round homosexuals (their terminology) they themselves fucked each other. Most of the gays and lesbians rounded up were against National Socialism or were progressive (i.e. they believed Jews were human beings).

    Homophobia and misogyny are complicated. There is a range of behavior from comments to murder. If a gay man doesn’t like a feminine gay man is being homophobic or misogynist? If a straight man is okay with gay men of all kinds but doesn’t like women……? (and I’ve met both.)

    And to Dave (SSM is icky variety) read John Boswell if you want to know about how gay relationships were perceived in medieval times. I belief men were married by the Church. Also, you might try reading…anything in the paleoanthropological record to determine if your claims about homosexual behavior among cave men are indeed substantiated.

  51. 51
    Dave says:

    Wow! I feel like I’ve stepped on a wasp nest. I am not the enemy. I live in religious right country. I don’t support Bush’s constitutional amendment concerning gay marriage and never have. I also have never supported persecution of gays or anyone else. In fact I and a lot and others have a lot of sympathy for the underdogs. (I’m not comparing you to dogs or cats for that matter.) I have watched people I liked, who turned out to be gay, die of AIDS. That really gave gays a human face.
    Hay, I read that the American Psychiatric Association Recommended gay marriage for mental health and from what I sense here it might be a wise thing to withdraw any objections to it just to keep the peace. Now don’t misconstrue me, I’m not saying gays are nuts. That idea was dropped long ago.
    Specifically Piny- ,I must object to your name calling allegation. I said “What kind of sissies are people today that all they can do is cry about how something isn’t fair?”? This is a commentary on practically everyone nowadays. I did not say “you or you people”?
    I guess I’m no diplomat, but everyone around here seems to have a knee jerk reaction. I guess it is as if I walked into an NRA meeting and said “Hay, I think we should outlaw assault weapons.”?
    I don’t buy the original premise of this post, Pseudo-Adrienne, though I don’t deny it an interesting speculation. Maybe some of the theories espoused here are just part of your ideology but they will never fly with John Q. Public
    I do agree that the sex scenes are fake and in fact most porn is ludicrous to the point of being hilarious. All that moaning and groaning, please! Hell, my gun collection is bigger than my porn collection, so it’s not a big deal for me.
    Based on what I read in your replies to my comments, I see an appalling gap, much wider than I thought in the between your cultures and mine. I am not trying to make that gap bigger, but now it is your move.

  52. 52
    Gadfly says:

    Jay: Very well said.

    It’s sad how Dave started out by stating that he had differing views, but was willing to listen to others — and then it all deteriorated into another tiresome internet tirade where people rave in absolutes and nobody learns anything.

  53. 53
    Josh Jasper says:

    Jay:

    John, gay men are sexist. You’re logic is faulty ~ i.e. just because I haven’t experienced means it doesn’t exist…..

    First off, it’s Josh, not John. Second off, I never said it didn’t exist. the fault here is in your reading something that does not exist. Sure, I guess it does exist. Other people report seeing it, so it’s probably there. I’ve just never seen it. And yes, i know plenty of lesbians and transfolk. Heck, one lesbian I know has an anti trans bias.

    I’m not claiming the problems don’t exist. Get it?

    Dave:

    I don’t buy the original premise of this post, Pseudo-Adrienne, though I don’t deny it an interesting speculation. Maybe some of the theories espoused here are just part of your ideology but they will never fly with John Q. Public

    So when did truth become subject to a popular vote? Homophobia and sexism *are* linked. You’re “John Q.Public won’t agree” is not a refutation, it’s just a bunch of populist and-waving.

    And if you’re feelign attacked, look to how you’ve phrased things, and consider that you’re not being at all respectful to what is, in fact a sensitive topic.

    You’re like some guy who walks into a NAACP meeting and makes watermellon eating jokes, and then wonders what he’s done wrong.

  54. 54
    Jay Sennett says:

    Josh,
    My apologies on getting your name wrong. And for your clarification. I did indeed misunderstand what you wrote.

    But, can you tell me how your knowing lesbians (gosh! even a lesbian who is anti-trans!!!! [not new...been around since the 70s...some lesbians not liking trans folks] and trans folks has anything to do with the male privilege and sexism I described?

    Thanks.

  55. 55
    BStu says:

    Unfortunetly, I have seen misogyny in gay men so I cannot say they go perfectly hand in hand. While it has been far from the rule, I’m afraid I can hardly call in rare, either. Clearly, this manner of contempt of women can exist in absense of homophobia. I guess the better question is can homophobia exist without misogyny. That I’m not so sure about. It might depend on where the bar is placed for calling certain attitudes homophobia. Is opposition to gay marriage enough to warrant the label? I’d say no, but if one thought it did, I think a connection to misogyny would be noticably weekend. If we require a more wide-ranging contempt and desire to oppress gays and lesbians, I think the connection becomes more distinct. Both come from a the same hyper traditionalist ideology

  56. 56
    BStu says:

    Mouse button slipped on the submit button, but I guess I was done with that thought anyway. I did want to comment on Dave’s logical basis for claiming his blanket insult doesn’t qualify. I’ve actually seen this reasoning before.

    “Everyone who disagrees with me is a liar or a fool or both,” they exclaim. “How dare you call me a liar or fool for disagreeing with you. You clearly only want to troll this discusssion,” one may sensibly respond. Only to be met by, “They called me a troll! Get a mod! They’re name calling. I never called anyone a name. I was just talking about a philosophy I disagree with. Now you’ve hurt my feelings and I demand you be banned.”

    Sad thing is, I’ve seen it work more than once. Good to know no one here is falling for it for a second.

  57. 57
    Josh Jasper says:

    Jay:

    But, can you tell me how your knowing lesbians (gosh! even a lesbian who is anti-trans!!!! [not new...been around since the 70s...some lesbians not liking trans folks] and trans folks has anything to do with the male privilege and sexism I described?

    I think it speaks to the prevalence of sexism everywhere, and (to my mind) the gay male community does not particularly stand out.

    Thinking about it, men are more likley to be sexist than women, so gay mean are probably more likley to be sexist than women, but I’d like to think that gay men are, on average, less sexist than your average man.

    My sample is probably self selecting, though. We don’t tolerate sexism.

  58. 58
    Tuomas says:

    Bstu:

    I have seen misogyny in gay men so I cannot say they go perfectly hand in hand.

    Maybe not perfectly. But I suppose there are homophobic gay men out there. I dont think being gay means automatical rejection of gay-bashing, homophobia or stereotypes about gays (I suppose those gays are pretty firmly “in the closet”, so to speak). Therefore seeing misogyny in gays doesnt mean automatically that they cannot go hand in hand. But then again im straight so what do I know…

  59. 59
    Tuomas says:

    And I forgot to add that homophobic gay men could very well be misogynist at the same time, after all homophobia does spring very much from how men and women are supposed to be in sex and other things, in other words from gender stereotypes.

  60. 60
    Diane says:

    I see that the seatbelts-are-dangerous argument is being used a lot here. Can anyone say “faulty syllogism”?! I don’t know of anyone, and especially myself, who said that a=b, therefore b never=c. I hold to my orginal premise, which has nothing to do with whether some men (and who the hell are they?) think gay men are okay but do not like women, or some misogynists are okay with the existence of gay men.

  61. 61
    Jay Sennett says:

    Josh,

    You wrote,

    I think it speaks to the prevalence of sexism everywhere, and (to my mind) the gay male community does not particularly stand out.

    I don’t know if you mean a lesbian disliking a trans person is a form of sexism?

    While I want to believe all of us, including myself, who say that sexism is generally less prevalent among gay men, I personally want to acknowledge the potential for unacknowledged male priviledge at work when I, or another man (gay or straight), makes such a statement.

    If a white person were to say the equivalent, “racism isn’t as prevalent in x white community,” we would, rightly in my opinion, be wary of such a statement. Some of us might even conclude that person made such statements from unacknowledged white priviledge (sp?).

    Indeed, we might even conclude that one of the functions of white priviledge is to deny its existence and to argue for the lack of racism using a one-to-many argument, i.e. “Well I don’t see it so it must not exist” or “I don’t see it much, so it must not be that bad.”

    Yet this is a potentially acceptable statement with regards to sexism. And please I am not saying anyone here means this, okay?!

    But I do know at least two dozen lesbians and bi women who deplore the rampant sexism in gay and female to male transsexual communities (why not call everyone out!).

    And yet if a gay or straight or transsexual/transgender man says, “I don’t think it is as bad as x community,” we tend to believe him. Again, this is an observation and I say it is sexism/misogyny not to believe women when they say x communities are sexist.

    Further, we do not discuss which communities we mean. It has been my observation that on this blog, women = white and people of color = men, unless otherwise specified.

    Which brings me to Diane’s quote:

    I hold to my orginal premise, which has nothing to do with whether some men (and who the hell are they?) think gay men are okay but do not like women, or some misogynists are okay with the existence of gay men.

    I presume this statement is directed at me, though I was responding to the original post, Diane, and not to anything you wrote.

    The problem I see happening in left communities is that we argue from theory, or out of personal experience and believe that our opinions are facts.

    Does it matter that I have met such men? Does it matter that for me, men can be:
    black, latino, poor, working-class, gay, bi, straight, living with a mood disorder, living with a physical impairment, be transsexual, transgender, canadian, peruvian, a single parent, polyamorous, a native english speaking, “genius,” upper middle class and so on

    I have observed a least one man, in this case a man of color, who behaves kindly and wonderfully to all men, whether gay or straight, treats white women fairly well, and dismisses black women.

    So, is he racist, or sexist? or both?

    Donna Haraway suggests that we can never argue from, or for, a place of totalizing theory.

    As a white transsexual man, I live with a tremendous amount of priviledge I did not have as a white woman. But, at any time, the federal government could take away the “M” on my passport. I do not have what we call in trans communities “birth priviledge.” My guess is that most people posting to this blog have birth priviledge.

    Wtihout birth priviledge, what happens to my status as a white man in the ER? It disappears with each scissors snip as a tech cuts away my pants.

    My point here is that oppressions and priviledges are constantly changing and largely contextual.

    I’ m for understanding and supporting greater human complexity. Labels are rich for understanding how our world functions in many ways.

    Having dropped one big label (white woman/lesbian) for another big one big one (white man who is het), labels are overrated and underrepresent the complexity of human experience. I’m not alone is this belief.

    Pick up most books written by trans people, or read any one of a number of blogs, and they will make similar statements. Not all of course.

    That’s it for now. Thanks for letting me rant.

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  63. 62
    piny says:

    >>My point here is that oppressions and priviledges are constantly changing and largely contextual.

    I’ m for understanding and supporting greater human complexity. Labels are rich for understanding how our world functions in many ways.

    Having dropped one big label (white woman/lesbian) for another big one big one (white man who is het), labels are overrated and underrepresent the complexity of human experience. I’m not alone is this belief.

    Pick up most books written by trans people, or read any one of a number of blogs, and they will make similar statements. Not all of course.

    That’s it for now. Thanks for letting me rant.>>

    Actually, IIRC, many trans autobiographers–Kate Bornstein is the only example I can specifically remember at the moment–describe a major shift in power and treatment when they go from one gender-label to another. I know that I’m treated better, and that people make more space for me, and I know that most of my ftm friends have reported the same thing: “People assume I’m competent now!”

    Of course, there is a great deal of transphobia and whatever the trans equivalent of heterosexism is to deal with. Whenever I come out or must be outed, I immediately become contemptible, frightening, negated. When I’m not out, I must face the invisibility of passing: a major fact of my identity and history disappears. But it would be dishonest for me to focus on the difficulties I face as a transsexual without acknowledging the huge amount of privilege I receive and will continue to receive because I pass as male.

    It’s true that gender privilege is contextual. Privilege is an interpersonal disparity, and therefore entirely dependent on the company in which one finds oneself. Most of the time, however, we’re in communities that privilege men and discriminate against women. Even in queer space, masculinity is frequently privileged and femininity or femaleness humiliated. And most of the time, my birth gender is not a factor in how I’m treated. I hardly ever visit the ER.

  64. 63
    Sarah in Chicago says:

    Okay, moving on from Dave’s comments (btw, BStu, nice call in the last couple posts) … I personally have witnessed misogyny from gay men. Yes, they are more likely on the whole to have less misogyny than straight men in my experience, simply because more often than not they have at least had a passing introspection with the nature of gender norms.

    However, as a lesbian that has worked (and partied – hmmm, maybe this is why I am single? *smile*) with gay men a lot (and have made awesome alliances, and wonderful friends) is that while they are gay, they are still men, and so retain and perform a lot of society’s sexism and misogyny. You can see that in gay and lesbian organisations, and you can see it in interaction.

    But it’s not us lesbians going “Oooo, you bad evil men!” (or, at least, not most of us), its just about accepting a fact, and working to change it. After all, as a white lesbian I know I exist in a racist society that privileges my skin colour. I need to acknowledge my own prejudices, and privileges and then move to remove them, or hopefully at least lessen them. Similarly as a member of a lesbian community I have biphobia (lesbians are HUGELY biphobic, ask any bisexual woman) and am trying to work on my discomfort in that regard (hell, I am completely comfortable with trans friends more than I am with my bi friends).

    Saying that gay men still are misogynistic isn’t about the blame game, its about acknowledging the existence so we can work to address them.

  65. 64
    Jay Sennett says:

    Piny writes:

    It’s true that gender privilege is contextual. Privilege is an interpersonal disparity, and therefore entirely dependent on the company in which one finds oneself. Most of the time, however, we’re in communities that privilege men and discriminate against women. Even in queer space, masculinity is frequently privileged and femininity or femaleness humiliated.

    Agreed. 100%

    And most of the time, my birth gender is not a factor in how I’m treated. I hardly ever visit the ER

    My birth gender is not a factor in how I’m treated, until I share with others about my life. And then the field is wide open!

    But the threat – threats are part and parcel of oppression – is there nonetheless. I was in the ER last year. And I was terrified for a time. Another trans acquaintance was harassed twice in the same ER.

    So while I do not visit the ER frequently I’m always afraid of it. And the fear – much like women’s fear of rape – serves to shape our choices and occupy a tremendous amount of mental and spiritual energy that could be used for other things.

    Kate Bornstein has talked about (as have other MtFs) the dimunition in power and acceptance she experienced as both a transsexual and a woman. When she was asked in an audience Q & A what she liked least about being a woman, she responded, “living with fear.”

    And lastly, I don’t know what IIRC means.
    Thanks.

  66. 65
    Josh Jasper says:

    Jay:

    I don’t know if you mean a lesbian disliking a trans person is a form of sexism?

    Not so much *A* transperson, as discriminating against transpeople in general. I could bring up a certain contentious woman’s music festival…

    While I want to believe all of us, including myself, who say that sexism is generally less prevalent among gay men, I personally want to acknowledge the potential for unacknowledged male priviledge at work when I, or another man (gay or straight), makes such a statement.

    I agree there. The experience of women in dealing with gay men would be far more convincing, but I can only report directly on what I’ve seen and heard.

    But I do know at least two dozen lesbians and bi women who deplore the rampant sexism in gay and female to male transsexual communities (why not call everyone out!).

    The FtM trans community is rather small, from what I know of it. The one researcher I know of in the field never mentioned sexism there, but again, if someone reports it exists, I’m not going to disagree.

    It also occuured to me that I might not be seeing it because I’m male, and so it’s not directed at me. But my lesbian and bi female friends don’t report much on it either, and they do compliain about sexism fairly regularly.

  67. 66
    Jay Sennett says:

    Josh,
    Thanks for clarifying my question.

    Not so much *A* transperson, as discriminating against transpeople in general. I could bring up a certain contentious woman’s music festival…

    (Ahhh, yes _the_ festival….perhaps a post shall appear about that certain festival, which claims to know how to define woman….but we digress.)

    For whatever it is worth, theorists and most legal experts agree that sexism as a term does not adequately describe what happens when a person discriminates against a trans person.

    Typically two phrases are used, (and legal rulings support this usage, though not exclusively); namely, gender identity and gender expression. However, a judge in Cincinnati ruled that sex could broadly be defined to include gender identity and gender expression. This ruling is causing consternation among trans activists and allies.

    So, the certain festival that will not be mentioned is seen as engaging in transphobic behavior within trans communities. We don’t typically say we experience discrimination on the basis of sex; rather, gender identity or gender expression or both. But other trans folks may have different experiences.

    What interests me is how discrimination because of gender identity and gender expression intersects with homophobia and misogyny..or not.

    Thanks.

  68. 67
    Tarn says:

    I tend to think of transphobia as having a lot to do with sexism, in that if you’re sexist, and particularly if you belief in strongly differentiated sexed roles and identities, you’re going to be transphobic too. In the same way as the Cincinatti ruling a number of the victories on trans rights in the UK, specifically a case that went to the European Court of Justice called P v S and Cornwall County Council, were based in a logic that construed discrimination on the basis of transition\gender identity as a kind of sexism (although this is probably as much pragmatic as anything, you can’t easily create a new provision in a law, but you can interpret an existing one to cover transphobic discrimination.) However, I do think there’s something else going on too that’s best explained by calling it transphobia; transition and visible gender variance renders individuals disposable or makes them legitimate targets in a way that isn’t reducible to sexism and needs the idea of transphobia to explain it.

    Regarding the unnamed festival (are we allowed to use its acronym?): I’d say that this is one case where it’s mostly down to a kind of sexism; the belief is basically that trans women are really men (either by virtue of genetics, or some polemical interpretation of socialisation) and as such aren’t allowed in. The festival supporters’ justification of trans women’s exclusion is basd on a belief in two mutually distinct and incommensurate groups, and as such seems like it’s better explained by sexism- but as that sexism is only really directed at trans women it’s one of the areas where sexism and transphobia cross over in a venn diagramish sort of way so it makes a lot more sense to call it transphobia. In contrast, I don’t think that sexism can adequately explain just how vitriolic the comments on trans people can be- Janice Raymond’s line on how trans women rape all women’s bodies is probably the best example of that- and that sort of area is where transphobia doesn’t really overlap other forms of discrimination.

    Homophobia and misogyny are probably linked in a similar fashion to transphobia and sexism; homophobia has a lot to do with misogny, particularly the fear of being feminised, but it’s also motivated by beliefs separate from misogny (disgust being one.) You can go a long way towards explaining homophobia by examining sexism and misogyny, but you can’t go all the way- for example it seems pretty hard to explain the way that a lot of homophobic men react to pictures of men kissing purely by referencing sexism.

    In my experience, gay men can be sexist, although are probably slightly less so than straight men. One manifestation of sexism that I have experienced that seems to be unique to gay men though is a kind of phobic reaction to lesbian sexuality. The analagous reaction amongst straight men tends to be a kind of creepy and appropriative perception of lesbian sexuality (girl on girl porn for example,) but oddly the only people I’ve met who seem to have a really genuine thing against lesbians are gay men.

  69. 68
    Brian Vaughan says:

    Are y’all trying to avoid getting Google’s attention and bringing on the attacks of transphobes who police that event? Because some of those folks post here from time to time already.

    In general, people who are members of an oppressed group are more conscious of the fact that their group is oppressed, and therefore more conscious of the need to oppose bigotry against their own group. But that’s not a given for all members of that group in all circumstances. When bigoted ideas are widespread, even members of an oppressed group will accept some of those bigoted ideas without realizing it. No one gets the pure unblemished vision of the truth from outside, because there’s no outside, and being consistent means being radical, which is hard.

    So I do think that sexism and homophobia — and transphobia — are closely connected, and I think that many people, especially the direct victims of those forms of oppression, understand that already, but not all of them do, and not all consistently.

  70. 69
    Jay Sennett says:

    Brian Vaughn wrote:

    Are y’all trying to avoid getting Google’s attention and bringing on the attacks of transphobes who police that event? Because some of those folks post here from time to time already.

    That one made me laugh aloud.

  71. 70
    mythago says:

    lesbians are HUGELY biphobic, ask any bisexual woman

    Why do you THINK so many of us end up with men? For a bi woman, even one who “leans queer,” living in the lesbian community is like dating that guy who freaks out every time he even thinks you looked at another guy. Eventually you decide his paranoid shit isn’t worth the pleasure of his company.

    Not that I’m pissy about this or anything.

    It’s just a first amendment issue.

    First Amendment 101, Dave: ‘obscenity’ is not protected by the First Amendment. However, other people’s remarks about your porn are.

  72. 71
    piny says:

    My birth gender is not a factor in how I’m treated, until I share with others about my life. And then the field is wide open!

    But the threat – threats are part and parcel of oppression – is there nonetheless. I was in the ER last year. And I was terrified for a time. Another trans acquaintance was harassed twice in the same ER.

    So while I do not visit the ER frequently I’m always afraid of it. And the fear – much like women’s fear of rape – serves to shape our choices and occupy a tremendous amount of mental and spiritual energy that could be used for other things.

    Kate Bornstein has talked about (as have other MtFs) the dimunition in power and acceptance she experienced as both a transsexual and a woman. When she was asked in an audience Q & A what she liked least about being a woman, she responded, “living with fear.”?

    And lastly, I don’t know what IIRC means.
    Thanks.

    “If I Recall Correctly.” I don’t have my copy of “Gender Outlaw” close at hand.

    I realize that there is transphobia to contend with; of course I agree that it’s painful and dangerous and difficult. I’m living under its constraints, too. But it is not quite accurate to say that it’s like living as a woman with a woman’s fear of rape. Very few women ever get to refrain from being publicly female. They don’t get to choose not to share, even with total strangers; their risky selves are right out there in the open. I have to worry if I am exposed; they have to worry everywhere, always. As a transperson, I am able to pass as a non-transperson. It’s important to distinguish my circumstances from those of someone who doesn’t have the option of joining, however temporarily or erroneously, the safe and privileged class–the woman I used to be, for example.

  73. 72
    piny says:

    Stupid blockquote function.

    Mythago–yup. Except that that guy also says horrible things about how slutty you and everyone like you are–he doesn’t just think that you’re probably a tramp, he thinks you’re constitutionally incapable of not sleeping around.

    And if you’re a transguy, you get to sleep with all kinds of people who perform all kinds of mental acrobatics to simultaneously “boy” and “unman” you, so that they can fetishize your transmaleness but don’t have to carry the taint of bisexuality or Teh Gay.

  74. 73
    Josh Jasper says:

    Mythago:

    Why do you THINK so many of us end up with men? For a bi woman, even one who “leans queer,”? living in the lesbian community is like dating that guy who freaks out every time he even thinks you looked at another guy. Eventually you decide his paranoid shit isn’t worth the pleasure of his company.

    Similarly for bi men from the gay community. Which is why I date men mostly from the bi community. I’ve had about two dates with gay men in my life. Most of them, I won’t consider.

    As for piny’s comment on fetishizing, yeah, I’ve heard from my trans friends that that’s a huge problem. OTOH, I can understand the people who find such things hot.

  75. 74
    Jay Sennett says:

    Piny, you wrote:

    I realize that there is transphobia to contend with; of course I agree that it’s painful and dangerous and difficult. I’m living under its constraints, too. But it is not quite accurate to say that it’s like living as a woman with a woman’s fear of rape. Very few women ever get to refrain from being publicly female. They don’t get to choose not to share, even with total strangers; their risky selves are right out there in the open. I have to worry if I am exposed; they have to worry everywhere, always. As a transperson, I am able to pass as a non-transperson. It’s important to distinguish my circumstances from those of someone who doesn’t have the option of joining, however temporarily or erroneously, the safe and privileged class”“the woman I used to be, for example.

    I appreciate the distinctions regarding women’s fear of rape.

    I am talking purely about feelings. And I understand the position you are taking. I, too, have taken it, and it is one that we on the left use frequently.

    The end result of this position is that it places all people on a hierarchy of oppressions, I think. The end result is that people who appear publically different are “more” oppressed than people who have “hidden” issues.

    As Audre Lorde reminds us, There are No Hierarchies of Oppression.

    I used to speak in the way that you have shared on this post. For many years I denied my own fears because for all intents and purposes, I am a temporarily able bodied, white, upper middle class white man who is married. I do have much.

    In our hierarchical world I have more than the vast majority of people do.

    Yet I still live with fear. And adopting a position which forces people to deny, dilute or sequestor their fears to support a hierarchy only reinvents that hierarchy.

    My likening my fear to a woman’s fear of rape was used only to suggest its pervasiveness in my life. I’m glad you don’t live with that kind of pervasive fear. No one should ever have to.

    The pitting of “public” versus “private” issues in pecking order of oppression does not get us anywhere on the left. We end up arguing wth each other while our opponents go about setting up their empire.

    In the end, what have you gained by answering my post in the manner that you did?

  76. 75
    Tiger Spot says:

    The conversation’s drifted a bit since then, but I wanted to address one of Dave’s earlier comments:
    “Why do gay men need to get married? I f they were adopting children, I could see it. ”

    There are a lot of different reasons people get married, or want to get married. I’m just going to look at mine for a minute.

    I am not married because I love my husband and want to stay with him for a long time. That is why I live with him, not why we are married.

    I am not married because I want my social environment (family, friends, co-workers) to acknowledge our relationship as legitimate. They were already doing that.

    I am not married because I want children. While I had planned to get married before having children, we’re not going to be doing that for a while so it’s not really a factor at this time.

    I got married so I could be on my husband’s health insurance. (Although right before the wedding I got a better job, so now he’s on my health insurance.) The other legal perks (being able to visit in the hospital, slight tax savings, etc.) were also nice, although we’ve never had a hospital incident so that was a theoretical sort of benefit. Also, my mother really wanted us to get married, apparently out of some kind of concern that my husband would wander off and forget to come back if there wasn’t a legal commitment. I never was quite clear on her reasoning there; I should ask next time I’m talking to her.

    A lot of people get marrie d for the three reasons I didn’t. A lot of people get married for the reason I did. A lot of people get married for completely different reasons. It doesn’t matter why gay men (or women) want to get married, it is simply unfair that they are not allowed to.

  77. 76
    Q Grrl says:

    Why do you THINK so many of us end up with men? For a bi woman, even one who “leans queer,”? living in the lesbian community is like dating that guy who freaks out every time he even thinks you looked at another guy. Eventually you decide his paranoid shit isn’t worth the pleasure of his company.

    This is utter bullshit.

  78. 77
    piny says:

    >>I used to speak in the way that you have shared on this post. For many years I denied my own fears because for all intents and purposes, I am a temporarily able bodied, white, upper middle class white man who is married. I do have much.

    In our hierarchical world I have more than the vast majority of people do.

    Yet I still live with fear. And adopting a position which forces people to deny, dilute or sequestor their fears to support a hierarchy only reinvents that hierarchy.

    My likening my fear to a woman’s fear of rape was used only to suggest its pervasiveness in my life. I’m glad you don’t live with that kind of pervasive fear. No one should ever have to.

    The pitting of “public”? versus “private”? issues in pecking order of oppression does not get us anywhere on the left. We end up arguing wth each other while our opponents go about setting up their empire.

    In the end, what have you gained by answering my post in the manner that you did?>>

    Before we deal with anything else: I have never, ever denied my own fear, or the fact of my own disadvantaged position, or the ways in which transphobia both perpetuates and exploits both. On an emotional level, transphobia has of course shaped my worldview and my daily interactions with other people; I worry about passing, discrimination, and violence as much as you do, I’m sure.

    Nor have I ever asked you to “deny, dilute, or sequestor” your fears.

    I am not establishing a “hierarchy,” merely pointing out that all lives are not the same. There are problems transpeople have that women don’t have. There is nothing counterproductive about analyzing the different ways different kinds of bigotry act to oppress different people. On the contrary, it is necessary to look in detail at the ways we all must live under the social constraints of prejudice. If we don’t understand how sexism behaves, and when its punishments are enforced, we can’t work to end sexism. If we don’t admit that masculinity and male presentation are a privilege for people like me and you, our perception of the humiliation meted out towards women and female-bodied people will never be accurate. You can’t really talk about what it’s like to be a transsexual, and the ways people treat transsexuals, without dealing with the way people treat men, including the men we frequently get to be.

    So to answer your final question, about what did I gain–why does that query always seem to crop up in discussions about sexism, particularly when someone wans to end a conversation?–I “gained” an honest contribution to a heretofore friendly, interesting debate.

  79. 78
    Jay Sennett says:

    Piny,

    So to answer your final question, about what did I gain”“why does that query always seem to crop up in discussions about sexism, particularly when someone wans to end a conversation?”“I “gained”? an honest contribution to a heretofore friendly, interesting debate.

    I’m not ending the conversation. I’m still here, posting.

    I agree you did not ask me directly.

    What you wrote is:

    I realize that there is transphobia to contend with; of course I agree that it’s painful and dangerous and difficult. I’m living under its constraints, too. But it is not quite accurate to say that it’s like living as a woman with a woman’s fear of rape.

    I am first and foremost a writer. But for me carries more weight than with others. You then write that it is “not quite accurate to say it’s like living as a woman with a woman’s fear of rape.”

    That is not what I said.

    Here is what I wrote:

    But the threat – threats are part and parcel of oppression – is there nonetheless. I was in the ER last year. And I was terrified for a time. Another trans acquaintance was harassed twice in the same ER.

    So while I do not visit the ER frequently I’m always afraid of it. And the fear – much like women’s fear of rape – serves to shape our choices and occupy a tremendous amount of mental and spiritual energy that could be used for other things.

    You also wrote:

    If we don’t understand how sexism behaves, and when its punishments are enforced, we can’t work to end sexism. If we don’t admit that masculinity and male presentation are a privilege for people like me and you, our perception of the humiliation meted out towards women and female-bodied people will never be accurate.

    I agree with you and yet I choose to see sexism as more complex than what you have written. Humiliations are meted out constantly through a variety of contextual human behaviors. There are contexts, for example, in which a women can have more power than a man….a temporarily able bodied woman in the workforce will always have more power than a quadraplegic man languishing in a nursing home because medicaid won’t pay for him to live at home, where he can get a job.

    Now a quadraplegic woman in similar circumstances is a different story.

    You can’t really talk about what it’s like to be a transsexual, and the ways people treat transsexuals, without dealing with the way people treat men, including the men we frequently get to be.

    I think I can. There are aspects of transsexualism, like hormone regimes, dealing with mental health diagnosis, barriers to insurance coverage, varying degrees of compassionate healthcare, how advances in medical technology have made people like me, the dog and pony show I have had to endure to change my birth certificate, driver’s license, passport and the 30,000 other pieces of paper that govern my life, that have _nothing_ to do with how people treat men.

    As to whether or not how society treats me as a transsexual is related to misogyny I don’t know. I think it is a valid question.

    I do know that oppressive forces work to constrain real human bodies, not linguistic artifacts. The forces that physically deny a woman the right to choose an arbortion – via the law or intimidation – are the same forces that make it very difficult for me to have done what I have done. How they constrain me is different. But the constraint exists, nonetheless.

    I also understand that these same forces priviledge me as a transsexual man, as they also priviledge a natal female, though the priviledges are different.

    In closing, I ended my last post with a question because it is a literary convention that makes the viewer think or pay attention. Questions in my book are almost never bad as they lead to more discussion and answers and more questions.

    What do you think? ;-)

  80. 79
    Josh Jasper says:

    Q Grrl:

    This is utter bullshit.

    How exactly is it utter bullshit? Are you denying that biphobia exists int he lesbian community? Or are you saying that Mythago’s explanation of why many bi women end up dating men is that they’re tired of being shat on by the lesbian community?

  81. 80
    Jesurgislac says:

    Mythago: Why do you THINK so many of us end up with men?

    Heterosexual privilege.

  82. 81
    mythago says:

    And here I thought feminists were careful to note all the disadvantages women suffer in opposite-sex relationships. I guess those disadvantages go away if you sign a form that says “But I also am into girls.” Then you needn’t worry about domestic violence, a lower standard of living, being expected to shoulder the vast majority of domestic work and childcare, risking unplanned pregnancy and STDs, and so on. Simply doesn’t happen to bi women!

    Q Grrl is probably one of those folks who believes that bisexuals are evil traitors who would have left anyway, and it’s a wonder the sainted lesbian community tolerates them as much as they do.

  83. 82
    ginmar says:

    Huh. Maybe it would be profitable to ask Qgrrl rather than read her mind.

  84. 83
    Loretta Singbiel says:

    I was reading about the latest “crisis” in the Epispocal diocese regarding the indoctrination of a FEMALE Bishop (“Episcopal Protest Of Top Bishop Increases”,Washington Post, July 3, 2006), and that article led me to your blog. I’ve only read the first 40 posts, and I realize I’m late to this conversation, but …

    I see the Bible as a comedy of errors, oozing hypocrisy of biblical proportions .

    According to the Washington Post article, the FEMALE- and HOMO-PHOBIC congregations are breaking-away in PROTEST, and the diocese is MOST CONCERNED that they will be taking their “buildings & property” with them. And yet…according to their Bible, The Lord Jesus told the disciples, “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys, and where thieves do not break in or steal” (Matthew 6:19-20).

    My goodness, first a GAY Bishop, then a FEMALE Bishop, and now the loss of their “earthly treasures”…the Episcopal Empire must be asking themselves: “Oh Lord, why hath thou forsaken us?”

    Anyway, this farce of “protecting the sanctity of marriage” by declaring it to be “between a man and a woman” is their last line of defense from the “gay escapees”. The lyrics “I loved you once in silence” from the 1967 movie “Camelot” described heterosexual marital infidelity, but in my opinion also accurately depicts “the love that dare not speak it’s name”. Gays are FINALLY able to “swing wide their prison doors”. I REJOICE FOR THEM, AND STAND WITH THEM IN THEIR FIGHT FOR EQUAL RIGHTS!!! Joe Solmonese, President of The Human Rights Campaign, is my HERO! You go, Joe!!!

    The protection and policing of this so-called “one man-one woman” marriage requirement, might prove problematic for the morally straight. Post #39 Amanda wrote: “Dan, incidentally, is legally married to a lesbian he has never kissed or lived with or had sex with or had children with–they got married to demonstrate how ludicrious marriage laws are that any two fools can marry if they have the correct set of genitals, but long time, loving families like his real one don’t have any rights.”

    So how will the religious-right solve the dilemma of transgenders who have undergone sex changes, or hermaphrodites who are in possession of each set of genitals? I suppose full-body-cavity-searches, exrays, gender-correct birth-name searches will be required to secure a “marriage” license in the future?…just as the color of one’s skin was a requirement before 1967?

    In answer to post #14 jstevenson’s question “What was the catalyst for making male homosexuality, something that was lauded, something that is now causing posts regarding homophobia?”, post #19 nexy jo wrote: “CHRISTIANITY”. Right you are! Their alpha-male, homophobic attitudes amount to, once again, MORE bible comedy…According to their Bible, male homosexuality and/or male masturbation were tantamount to abortion or murder, and punishable by death. However, because lesbians “don’t spill seed” when they masturbate, they were/are exempt? … Well, at least ONCE in their Bible, the FEMALES had the upper hand? (pardon the pun)…At least I can’t blame MY after-death experience on “masturbation”!

    I see “religions” as comedies, and crutches for people who fear the FINALITY of death. And in their inability to accept DEATH, they are missing out on LIFE. My wish for all society is to embrace COMMON-SENSE, instead of NON-SENSE (the Bible). But, with the U.S. population reaching 300 million, I suppose it’s time for history to repeat itself, and thin out the crowd with another RELIGIOUSLY INSPIRED war…

  85. 84
    katy says:

    i have a question.. if homophobia is rooted in misogyny then how come the ancient greeks (who were great women-haters) practiced pederasty?

  86. 85
    B. Adu says:

    I’m not convinced homophobia is about mysogny, directly anyway. Men, possibly even more than women in some ways are taught becoming a man is an achievement, therefore not being ‘manly’ can seem like erasure or annhilation. Merely not being a man, does not necessarily make you a woman, we are not “opposites” that is a constructed view.

    being someone’s butt-boy. Which would be really humiliating and would turn a man into something truly loathesome–a woman.

    That’s about being entered. This doesn’t “turn you into a woman”, obviously it’s woman’s designated sexuality, so its strongly associated with being female.

    The real fear is deeper and more primal and I suspect all humans are wary of being entered, full stop. Woman just have this conditioned out of them cynically at a young age in keeping with more overall obedience. I daresay that’s also part of this fear.

    That is why so many women find that although they remain interested in sex, that desire manages to part company with their bodies willingness to continue.