So I am slowly falling in love with the moisture in the air, the brightness of the sun, the warm and welcoming Southern smiles and the rigor of my program at Louisiana State University. I am finding something very queer about the complexity of cultures that all intersect in Baton Rouge and New Orleans. I like that the racial divide within the queer community seems much less institutionalized than it was in Indiana, Ohio or Massachusetts. I like that lesbians and gay men seem to frequent the same establishments in Baton Rouge and interact with each other in a pretty seamless fashion. There is however a strange conservatism that seems to permeate the air and be palpable at times.
As I sat down to write up my submission for Bilerico I found myself confronting two possible stories that capture these conservative undertones and would allow me to invite you into discussion with me around them. One deals primarily with the continued pervasiveness of racism and the other deals with homophobia in a educational context. In honor of being a contributor to an LGBTQ blog, it seems appropriate that I respond to another LSU student's column that describes his position that America must take a “stand against homosexuality.” I provide you with his opening statement to hopefully entice you to read the rest of my entry.
Alexander Hamilton warned us years ago that "Those who stand for nothing fall for anything." These words have been prophetic in the American debate on sexuality. America continues catering to the homosexual movement, and so America continues to be duped.
If you click on the link above you will see that the author of this silly and dangerous column is somewhat attractive and, at least to my eyes, a little gay looking (in a good way). Just as he fought the urge in his column to “talk about why practicing homosexuality is intrinsically disordered and why it prevents one from loving fully” I shall fight the urge to comment about how cute I think he is and how I am left wondering if one night of good gay loving might change his mind about this whole mess and silence one more dangerous voice.
The perception that America is “catering to the homosexual movement” is fascinating and seriously misguided. Michael might have been well served to look at the statistics on LGBTQ teenagers and homelessness. If that didn’t change his mind perhaps the suicide statistics for the same group would help him see more clearly that America is as a country - in a way - at war with its non-gender normative and non-heterosexual population. It is not accidental that if you want to eliminate a race of people you kill off their children, and if he paid a little closer attention he would notice that LGBTQ children are being eliminated. He might also notice the insane number of hate crimes that are perpetrated against non-gender normative and non-heterosexual populations and realize that, much like any form of difference, America is invested in eliminating this one. I don't feel like I am being catered to in any way.
Realizing that I may sound anti-American I want to take a moment to say that I am not. I am proud of where I am from in every way imaginable, but I think that it would be foolish of me not to acknowledge that we are at war. Not a war on terrorism but a war on difference, and despite some notable setbacks and Michael’s best efforts, I believe that my side (the queers, transsexuals, gays, immigrants, disabled, women and other “others”) will win.
Michael goes on to talk about the role of reproduction in sexuality saying,
America needs to grow in self-confidence on this debate. The homosexual argument is illogical; sexuality is obviously meant for reproduction. Any sexual activity that is opposed to life is intrinsically disordered. Yet we continue to refuse to stand up for ourselves, allowing courts, school boards and speech codes to dictate political correctness to us.
Could someone please not mention ENDA, the hate crimes bill or efforts to end the discriminatory Don’t Ask Don’t Tell military policy to him or his friends? As long as he, like a lot of gay people, is convinced that the marriage question is the most important question at least he isn’t spreading his vile hate in other directions.
I feel compelled to ask Michael a potentially offensive question: does he masturbate? Or, if he has sex of any sort, does he use birth control? If someone is unable to conceive should they then be unable to have sex? Some women might not like that, and I would bet that men who have had vasectomies might kick his ass for bringing it up.
The idea that sex that is not about reproduction is “opposed to life” is absurd. Sex of any sort should be a celebration of life. Reminding us that we are indeed alive and blessed by the ability to be so close to other human beings regardless of gender identities, favorite positions, or resulting or not resulting offspring.
As I was writing this email it was announced that a debate with him around this issue is being planned for the future. I will plan to attend the debate and report back here how it goes. Stay tuned; this may just be the beginning of my relationship (in my head sexual) with Michael. Writing this post has left me wondering if I need therapy for my unhealthily strong attraction to ex-gays and conservative folks.
I am really curious what the rest of you think of his column and hope that some of you will chime in with your opinions.