John "The Gneech" Robey (the_gneech) wrote,
John "The Gneech" Robey

Some Clarification Here...

Regarding the "pride vs. progress" video, some salient points...

Anybody who knows me can probably guess that I'm not exactly a fan of overtly sexual behavior in public. I'm not advocating that outrageous displays are a good idea in pride parades or anywhere else; they're not my cup of tea by a long shot. However, despite the video's histrionics on this point, if you turn the picture off and listen to what the guy says, that's not what he's upset about.

He comes right out and says that the "outrageous" elements in pride parades directly cause homophobia and gay bashing. In other words, in his opinion, the outrageous sexual behavior of "Party A" is directly responsible for the intolerant and violent behavior of "Party B."

At the risk of an instance of Godwin's Law, this is like saying, "If certain Jews hadn't been (whatever it was that Jews were supposed to have done), the Nazis wouldn't have been able to persecute them," thus shifting the blame conveniently off of the Nazis (who have the socially-dominant position) to the persecuted Jews (who do not).

The video ranter also claims that he and other "normal" gays have made "all the progress in gay rights" and that the outrageous people in pride parades are undermining all that good work. Frankly, I think this is bunk. The "out there" element, from Oscar Wilde to the Stonewall riots to the raging queens on TV like Mr. Humphries, has largely been what finally made gay rights a "non-taboo" subject -- there's a reason Wilde referred to homosexuality as "the love that dare not speak its name." Both ends of the spectrum are necessary and will continue to be so.

Finally, this guy can point at the extreme fringe and shriek, "WE'RE NOT WITH THEM!!!" all he wants, but it's not going to do him any good. The thing he's so upset about, the association in the public mind of "normal" him with the "out-there" others, is unavoidable. To most straight people, gays --all gays-- will always be fundamentally alien, in the same way that most men and women often each other as fundamentally alien. From that mindset, the normal gay and the out-there gay, no matter how different they may be, on a basic level are more like each other than either one is like the straight.

This is a fundamental psychological phenomenon, and he's going to have to come to terms with it. Despite what the ranter thinks, that doesn't make the "out-there" people responsible for his own feelings of isolation.

I agree that dancing around with dildos in public doesn't do the gay community any favors -- but like it or not, Mr. Ranter, you're stuck in the gay ghetto with them and always will be and are going to have to learn to love 'em. If you want them to stop behaving in ways that make you cringe, you're going to have to win them over to your own set of tastes and values, and you're never going to do that by bashing them over their metaphorical heads.

-The Gneech
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