I Want the World to Know

by Belle Waring on September 27, 2004

Did you hate high school? I suggest putting it all into perspective by reading a series of articles on being a 17-year-old gay boy in rural Oklahoma (Part I, Part II; Part III is forthcoming). On the one hand, I know that his life is much better than it would have been even in the recent past, and that American culture is changing in many ways that will make similar journeys for younger boys and girls easier in the future. He has uncles who are openly gay, and his father is apparently resigned to his sexual orientation. On the other hand, ponder the exquisite, hellish torment:

Michael tried sending his mom a clue about his sexuality early on. He took her to a Cher concert in Tulsa, but she failed to make the connection.

“Apparently a lot of people don’t know she has a gay following,” Janice says, defensively. “The guys at work said how neat it was that I was going.”

She pauses, thinking back. “I have to say, it was a fantastic concert.”

A Cher concert, people. I have to stop thinking about the ride back from the Cher concert now. His mother, Janice, wants to cure him:

She felt as though the mental health industry was against her until someone gave her the book “Homosexuality and the Politics of Truth,” which asserts that gay activists successfully pressured the American Psychiatric Association in 1973 to remove homosexuality as a mental illness from the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual.

Suddenly, Janice realized why she’d hit so many roadblocks. “The gay movement had gone into the politics and changed everything,” she says. “Now it’s not even a disease or sickness.”

No one seemed to understand that Michael’s eternal life was at stake. Janice feared that Michael would go to hell and be apart from her in the afterlife. “I’m afraid I won’t see him again,” she says, her voice breaking.

Whatever agony you may have experienced at that 8th grade dance, could it really compare to this?:

One night at the mall he sees a clerk at Abercrombie & Fitch who he thinks might be gay. Heart pounding, Michael decides to go for it.

He asks the clerk: Are you fruity?

The answer is no.

All together now: Move. Out. Of. Oklahoma. Finally, I object to the series’ subtitle, “Young and Gay in Real America.” That tweaker I used to see at the EndUp in SF around 5 am on a Monday sometimes, wearing nothing but make-up and a plastic trash bag fashioned into a rude tunic, and smeared with human shit on the inside? He’s part of real America too. This isn’t widely known, but cornfields don’t actually attract extra realness to places in virtue of their special ontological properties.



Brian 09.27.04 at 2:45 pm

I was thinking about the use of “Real America” this morning on the Metro ride to work. I’m not sure what the post is getting at with that term – is it trying to make those of us who read the paper (and aren’t in the ‘real’ part of the country) feel like we’re out of touch? I’m originally from the midwest, and you you see the same narrowmindedness and hypocrisy here, without all of the corn. Is this how the Post gets its street cred with the conservative media watchdogs?


Robin Green 09.27.04 at 2:57 pm

“Real America” as contrasted with the upper-middle-class bubble world of many of the big-name journalists and columnists, perhaps? I dunno.


KCinDC 09.27.04 at 3:12 pm

If you prick us urbanites, do we not bleed? I too am tired of being dismissed as unreal by the media — the vast majority of whose members also live in “unreal” areas. Most of the US population lives in urban areas. We are just as real as the people in “the heartland”.


dsquared 09.27.04 at 3:19 pm

“Real” is being used in the same sense as “Reality TV”, “Real Lives” and “Real Readers’ Letters”. I think that the memo we sent round announcing the change of meaning was tucked into that copy of Zizek that John burned a while ago.


Dylan 09.27.04 at 3:32 pm

“Real” America might be read as “distintively” American. City slickers are just a different flavor of Euro trash.


reuben 09.27.04 at 3:32 pm

“Real America” as contrasted with the upper-middle-class bubble world of many of the big-name journalists and columnists, perhaps? I dunno.

Are you seriously drawing a dichotomy between the rural Midwest and the Upper West Side, with nothing in between?

My family and friends all live well outside the Midwest. They’re middle class. They’re not resentful. Some are even liberal, by American standards. Are they not just as real as a bunch of revelationists in the Midwest? And if not, why do I keep sending them Christmas cards?


Mrs Tilton 09.27.04 at 3:37 pm

Too optimistic, perhaps, given the prevailing mood among many Americans; but I hope the day may come when a Cher concert is the worst hell a rural gay high-schooler need face.


Carlos 09.27.04 at 4:28 pm

… Belle, you don’t even have to be gay to undergo that poor kid is going through.

I love my home state, I will wear the green and gold till the day I die, but whenever I go back people ask me where I’m from. And they’re the nice ones.

That’s the wretched part, you know. To have your sense of home taken away from you because of other people’s bigotry. Moving does not really help.



wood turtle 09.27.04 at 4:36 pm

The Cher concert here is very popular, the tickets sold out in less than an hour.

There’s nothing special about living next to corn, except that when you have little kids you have to keep warning them about not going into the corn rows to play because they can get lost.


Zizka 09.27.04 at 4:58 pm

Belle, I think that your post isn’t ready for prime time yet. Specifically, a tweaker smeared with shit is not a persuasive example of urban “real America”. Much as we all may love such persons.

What defines the smalltown midwest is closeting. The QB of my HS football team was gay. He came out after decades of marriage and a successful career as a HS sports coach. He seemed sort of odd at the time, too. My mother’s cousin from Iowa was gay and moved in New York where he adored the theatah. My military lifer great uncle from SD was probably gay.

Differences are actually accepted as long as their real nature is not known or made public. It’s OK to be odd, but not out or flamboyant about anything whatsoever.

When I was 20 and thought to be gay, two farmer brothers I had known in school introduced me to their uncle, who looked pretty gay to me. I once inadvertantly outed a friend’s sister. I thought everyone knew.

I do agree about the “real America” stuff. After 9/11 I tried to point out to people that Osama didn’t attack Kansas or Alabama, but rather NYC. Lots of people missed that point.


sennoma 09.27.04 at 5:19 pm

I suggest putting it all into perspective

I suggest that this phrase comes off rather high-handed, and that comparing miseries is entirely pointless. We all had our own hells in high school, which is how we are able to empathise so strongly with Patrick.


bob mcmanus 09.27.04 at 5:34 pm

” do agree about the “real America” stuff. After 9/11 I tried to point out to people that Osama didn’t attack Kansas or Alabama, but rather NYC. Lots of people missed that point.”

That is a good point, which or what America is perceived as the “Real America” overseas. Europe mostly sees the liberal New Yorkers, and are simply amazed at a President Bush. Osama and the Islamists probably don’t conceive their enemy as the “700 Club” crowd.


George 09.27.04 at 5:55 pm

Re “Real America”:

Who was is who said “I don’t live in America, I live on a small island off the coast of New York”?


Matt Austern 09.27.04 at 5:56 pm

Europe mostly sees the places where most people live. The thing about the “real America” that doesn’t usually get mentioned is that most Americans don’t live there.

All that’s happened is that a minority is claiming special status, and they’ve managed to get unusually sympathetic press.


Randolph Fritz 09.27.04 at 6:01 pm

The anti-urbanism of the USA goes all the way back to the original colonists, who had little love for the great capitals of Europe, and figures like Jefferson.

Also, the US rural landscape is unique in its isolation, a result of a Jeffersonian policy; instead of towns surrounded by fields, we have each field as a sizeable domain. It was a bitterly lonely landscape and a harsh life, and there’s a lot of the descendents of those settlers who imagine its privations as ennobling (most famous and influential: Rose Wilder Lane), something very few of the original settlers felt.


nick 09.27.04 at 6:02 pm

I don’t know whether moving out of Oklahoma entirely is necessary: there’s enough of a gay scene in OKC for him to feel something other than a pariah.

But yes, ‘real America’. Ugh. Though I’m not sure whether ‘corn’ is what you mean when talking about OK: lots of little oil wells, more like it. Corn is Iowa. And corn ain’t people.


rea 09.27.04 at 6:09 pm

I feel for the kid, I really do, but if you think it’s hard being 17 and gay in Oklahoma in 2004, let me tell you, it was a lot harder when I did it in 1972 . . .


dsquared 09.27.04 at 6:15 pm

rea; I’m trying to come up with some form of double entendre based on “uphill both ways” but so far no inspiration.


nick 09.27.04 at 6:17 pm

The thing about the “real America” that doesn’t usually get mentioned is that most Americans don’t live there.

And, more to the point, wouldn’t want to live there. The simultaneous idealisation of the ‘heartland’ while staying as far away from it as possible says something about Americans’ idea of themselves.


Sebastian Holsclaw 09.27.04 at 6:21 pm

It has been my experience that the US military has a much higher percentage of gay people than you would expect from comparisons to the population as a whole. For the moment I’ll assume that observation is true.

Nearly all of those I met saw the military as the best way to get out their deeply rural home states. If this world has an author, you have to appreciate the irony of gay men using the US military as an escape from their hometowns.

A sad irony.


Katherine 09.27.04 at 6:33 pm

That article is quite something.

Now, this is exactly the sort of thing that the GOP points to as an example of liberal bias. And they’ve got a point–the press is definitely sympathetic to gay rights and gay marriage. Sometimes, as with this article, very sympathetic. (Though the author makes the mother very human too; makes it clear that she honestly and truly believes that her much-loved son will go to hell if she does not cure him, and that she is not about to disown him despite that.)

But. What are they supposed to do? There’s not much editorializing in this article. You could find some examples, but not many. Even if there were none you’d be accused of bias, because if you report the facts in a concrete way one side looks better than the other. “The protestors walked over the bridge. The cops released the dogs on them,” is not biased reporting. You could argue that telling it from Michael Shackelford’s point of view is biased, but I guarantee you, writing it from the point of view of the typical anti-gay-marriage leader would not make one sympathetic in the same way. The article is perfectly fair to his mother and to the gay conversion minister, and it does not have the same effect; and they are a lot more likeable than your Jerry Fallwells.

The only way for the press to be “unbiased” is to skew the coverage so that it reflects the polls on gay marriage. And that’s not objectivity, that’s playing to your audience. We don’t like it very much when Al Jazeera does it with their coverage of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Does the fact that a majority of the Arab world believes suicide bombers are martyrs justify referring to them as martyrs on TV? Of course not. And a majority of Americans believing gay marriage threatens their family does not justify the press twisting its coverage to show gay marriage as a threat to straight families. There are happy couples getting married in the Cambridge City Hall for reporters to interview; there are no straight couples getting divorced as a result for reporters to interview. So how the hell should they cover this issue?


oneangryslav 09.27.04 at 6:37 pm

Sebastian, the same phenomenon you describe in your post was responsible for the the Catholic Church becoming a refuge for young, gay males from rural Europe. Their parishioners are just as ignorant about the real nature of their priests’ lives as are most pro-military Americans about the lives of their military members.

(The use of the phrase “military members” in a post about gays in the military was entirely unintentional.)


rea 09.27.04 at 7:03 pm

“some form of double entendre”

Oh god, I’m mortified, dsquared, particularly as I’m the first to notice such blunders when somebody else commits them . . .


Carolos Obscuros 09.27.04 at 7:34 pm

Belle Waring writes “that American culture is changing in many ways that will make similar journeys for younger [homosexual] boys and girls easier in the future.”

I doubt it. Very few parents – regardless of political convictions – are happy to learn that their child is homosexual. The Right may express their horror; the Left may tend to grin and bear it – but the fact is that, for most parents, homosexuality in their offspring is as welcome as shingles. If (as may well be the case) homosexuality is as genetically determined as musical ability or athletic talent and if (as may well be the case) the ‘gene’ for homosexuality is ever identified, you can be certain that pre-implantation genetic diagnosis (PGD) or similar eugenic techniques will be used to weed out the ‘undesirable’ embryos from the ‘desirable’ ones.

We all like gays – but we’re damn glad our offspring are as straight as ourselves. That’s the gay tragedy — the knowledge that, as far as their parents are concerned, they are a genetic dead end.


Andrew McManama 09.27.04 at 7:52 pm

Thanks for sharing the last bit about the garbage bag tunic…


dsquared 09.27.04 at 8:15 pm

If (as may well be the case) homosexuality is as genetically determined as musical ability or athletic talent

I can see that we’re going to have quite a lot to disagree about, carlos.

(and the good thing about the CT comments policy is that, instead of arguing with you line by line, I can just tell you to either explain what you mean by that piece of homophobic drivel or fuck off)


Robin Green 09.27.04 at 8:44 pm

Er, why is that homophobic drivel?


Carolos Obscuros 09.27.04 at 8:54 pm

Dsquared seems to have a problem in distinguishing between value judgements and empirical statements. My point is very simple:

1. It is generally agreed that homosexuality is genetically determined (to some extent).
2. Virtually all parents prefer to have hetersosexual children.
3. Hence, if it ever proves possible to identify an embryo’s future sexual orientation, many parents will do so and, other things being equal, will opt for embryos of heterosexual orientation.
4. The percentage of homosexual children is therefore likely to decline in future.

Whether this is a ‘good thing’ or a ‘bad thing’ is a different matter, of course.


Carlos 09.27.04 at 9:04 pm

Um. There’s one person named Carlos on this thread, D^2. And there’s some daft evo-psych guy with a vaguely similar pseudonym. Here’s the deal: you don’t confuse me with him, and I won’t confuse you with Daniel Drezner.



George 09.27.04 at 9:43 pm

Carlos (the obscure one) was on firmer ground when he said homosexuality may be genetically determined. He’s right, it might, but I doubt it: what I’ve read seems to indicate that to the extent orientation is biologically determined at all (surely not the case with many people), it might have more to do with hormones and chemicals than with genes. But when he said it was “generally agreed,” he relenquished that forgiving ambiguity.

I also disagree with his assertion that “virtually all parents prefer to have heterosexual children.” Where I live (apparently not part of “real America”) this is not true of heterosexual parents, and it’s completely false with respect to homosexual parents, a faster-growing segment of the parental population than he may think.


dsquared 09.27.04 at 9:58 pm

Sorry, Carlos.

Carolos; I am perfectly aware of the distinction between value judgements and statements of fact. In fact, I’m so good at it that I’m even aware of a third category called “Untrue claims made as if they were statements of fact, but actually only expressed as such in a mealy-mouthed attempt to express a revolting value judgement while trying to look as if one is not making it oneself”.

You are wrong in the following claims:

1. It is not “generally agreed” that homosexuality is genetically determined

1a. There is no single category of “homosexuals”; there is a spectrum of behaviour.

2. Homosexuals are not a “genetic dead end”.

3. The vast majority of parents are not homophobes or eugenicists.

You are also wrong on the genetic determination of musical or athletic ability (“musical!” does this mean that if my son turns out to be a master of the sitar I should have a word with my wife and my greengrocer?). And I believe you’re wrong about the reactions of parents who learn that their children are gay. But the numbered points above are the mistakes which I believe to be crucial to your argument. Now fuck off.


Katherine 09.27.04 at 10:20 pm

Breaking news from fake America (Massachusetts):
Tom Finneran, the anti-gay, power-mad, generally crappy speaker of the state legislature has resigned. His most likely replacement (Salvatore DiMasi) supports gay marriage, whereas Finneran opposed both gay marriage and civil unions. So the chances of a state constitutional amendment overturning Goodridge just dropped, and they may have dropped a whole lot.



Jason 09.28.04 at 2:40 am

D2, I think you’re almost certainly wrong on 3, and perhaps on 1 (although, I think 1 is an ambiguous statement).

I think most people are homophobes, largely because of social indoctrination, and a vast majority of people are at least mild eugenicists in the sense that they pick their mate based on attributes they would like their children to have (perhaps subconsciously, but often consciously too).

1a is certainly true; 2 is true now, but was false in the not-so-distant past (if we consider as homosexuals only those who are at the extreme of the spectrum).

That said, I know for sure I wouldn’t weed out homosexuality from my children. I don’t want to put myself in CO’s camp here, just wanting D2 to calm down and either ignore the troll or take him to pieces a little more carefully.


Peter 09.28.04 at 6:13 am

If anyone’s a ‘troll’ in this discussion it’s dsquared, spying imaginary phobias without provocation and adding in foul language for good measure.

Is this what the Left’s been reduced to? Screaming abuse at anyone who doesn’t pretend that the vast majority of parents have no preferences regarding their kids’ sexuality?

I’d suggest he read into some of the basics of human nature, which ordinary human contact obviously hasn’t taught him, if it weren’t so plain that his mind is about as open to politically incorrect facts as an 18 year old middle class postmodernist. To turn one’s brain into a Fort Knox of PC, with no hope of any trace of reality entering, is pitiable in a political activist, but tragic – if not uncommon – in an academic.


Alan K. Henderson 09.28.04 at 6:14 am

The fact that there are people out there who are genetically identical (i. e. monozygotic twins) but have different sexual orientations disproves the notion that all homosexuality is genetically determined.

The kneejerk reaction to the twin studies (Bailey and Pillard being the most prominent) is “We’ve got to study identical twins reared apart.” The idea is to control for environment. Fine. But there is another glaring question that followup research must address: How is it that twins having the same genetics, gestated in the same uterine environment, and reared in identical home environments, can wind up with different sexual orientations?


NancyP 09.28.04 at 6:18 am

Maybe Carolos is thinking about that play, Twilight of the Golds, that came out shortly after the Hamer Xq28 linkage paper. Premise was, woman who had battery of prenatal tests thinks about aborting gay fetus. Woman in question had a gay brother, and the play turned on family conflicts. There was a movie, and the play shows up every once in a while in amateur or college productions (the only interesting theater in my town).

There may be some genetic contribution with low penetrance (technical genetic term meaning not everyone with genotype variant X gets the phenotype X – watch yr dirty minds), but it is likely to be multigenic and difficult to define, given the variation of behavior and of self-perceived “choice” vs. “born that way”. Rule number one of genetic research is to get a highly defined and uniform group for study, and that would seem difficult in this case. It isn’t a research problem I would care to address now, and I daresay the society will have more enlightened attitudes by the time any modestly accurate info about genetic components of homosexualities become available.

As for being a genetic dead end, apparently Carolos hasn’t heard of artificial insemination. And heterosexual children may be infertile or just not want kids. And the parents may not care, as long as ONE of the children provides a grandchild or two. Yo – we aren’t prize Great Danes or Angus.

I don’t remember much about it, but I do believe there was a genetic component to perfect pitch, which is a far cry from musicianship. The musical families train their children from toddlerhood. I know a family whose latest generation is the 7th generation of professional musicians. #1 generation played in princely Indian courts.

BTW, an acquaintance from Tulsa says that the boy’s town is actually a ring suburb of Tulsa about 20 miles from downtown, ie, not a cornfield.


McDuff 09.28.04 at 7:37 am

Just a data point:

I know more than one person on the “left” who, far from ‘grinning and bearing’ the possibility that one of her children could be gay, has actually expressed a positive desire for at least one to be gay.

But then, we on the left are an odd bunch like that.

Also, can I express outrage at the classification of the entire human race as homophobic eugenicists? Thought so.



Randolph Fritz 09.28.04 at 9:29 am

“How is it that twins having the same genetics, gestated in the same uterine environment, and reared in identical home environments, can wind up with different sexual orientations?”

Each child experiences a different home environment, as I’m sure you know. And, at best, the genetics are probably a predisposition, rather than a certain destiny.


Matt McGrattan 09.28.04 at 10:24 am

“As for being a genetic dead end, apparently Carlos hasn’t heard of artificial insemination. ”

It’s also a mistake to assume that homosexual men won’t father children in the ‘normal’ way.

There’s an unfortunate presumption — unfortunate as it has some genuine real-world effects in terms of, for example, AIDS prevention among married women in India — that the standard ‘Western’ model of homosexuality is a historical or geographically universal one.

The stereotypical ‘Western’ model i.e. men mostly with male-only sexual relationships, etc., isn’t really how it is in the rest of the world or indeed how it has historically been in the West.

I write a little on these issues as they are at least peripherally involved in some of my thesis — I work on normative claims in medicine and there’s lots of contentious grist for the analytical mill here — and there are quite a few interesting papers tracing the very different social contexts in which men have sex with men in other societies. In many of these societies a strong sexual preference for male partners can go hand-in-hand with a strong role as head of a family, father of children, etc.

Not just in the stereotypical Western sense (familiar to us all from novels and film) of ‘closeted’ men ‘concealing’ their ‘real’ preferences (lots of scare quotes here ;-] ) but in the sense of men who are sexually attracted to men but who see their role as fathers as essential to being men and their sexual preference being mostly incidental to this role as a father.

Any relationship between a sexual preference for sex with other men and a lower likelihood of fatherhood is historically and socially contingent at best.


Carolos Obscuros 09.28.04 at 12:27 pm

OK, I’m no expert and I may be mistaken about homosexuality being mainly in the genes — though that in fact is the claim that many gays seem to make (‘born that way’). Possibly homosexual orientation is caused by a combination of genetic factors, prenatal environmental factors and postnatal environmental factors. Perhaps you have to have a homosexual ‘gene’ plus fetal exposure to some kind of hormonal disorder or virus plus a Freudian mom and dad plus teenage seduction behind the bicycle shed to become a non-wavering gay. Don’t ask me. At any rate, sexual orientation has to have SOME cause or combination of causes. I’ll revise my claim.

Let us perform a little thought experiment. Let us assume that scientists discover that homosexuality is not genetically determined at all but chiefly the result of a microbial infection of the pregnant mother (apparently the hypothesis is actually under investigation in the scientific community). Let us also assume that a vaccine to prevent this microbial infection has been developed by the pharmaceutical industry – one dose of Pfizer’s ‘Gaystop’ or ‘Lesboblock’ during the first six months of pregnancy and you can rest assured that your baby will be 100% heterosexually oriented – a child who will, in due course, want to perform potentially reproductive sexual acts, hence reproducing other children who, in due course … etc. etc. Darwin 101, Dawkins 101, Pinker 101.

How would infected pregnant women react? To ask the question is to answer it: you can bet your bottom dollar that (outside of Greenwich Village) they would be falling over one another to get a prescription and to raid the local pharmacy while stocks last. That has nothing to do with ‘homophobia’. It’s just that most parents (a) want to have grandchildren and (b) don’t want their children to suffer as a result of being gay. For example, parents prefer their children to be of normal or over-average height – but that doesn’t mean their ‘nanophobes’. And because I don’t want my children to be dumb or ugly doesn’t mean I hate cognitively disadvantaged people or homely men and women. You can love somebody and yet regret that they are the way they are. You can love somebody and yet consider them to be a cross to bear.

So I predict that, at least in Western society, partly as a result of medical progress, the percentage of homosexuals is likely to decline in future (other things being equal, of course).


Steve 09.28.04 at 2:57 pm

Perhaps you have to have a homosexual ‘gene’ plus fetal exposure to some kind of hormonal disorder or virus plus a Freudian mom and dad plus teenage seduction behind the bicycle shed to become a non-wavering gay.

Pfizer’s ‘Gaystop’ or ‘Lesboblock’

you can bet your bottom dollar that (outside of Greenwich Village) they would be falling over one another to get a prescription

That has nothing to do with ‘homophobia’.

don’t want their children to suffer as a result of being gay.

And because I don’t want my children to be dumb or ugly doesn’t mean I hate cognitively disadvantaged people or homely men and women.

You can love somebody and yet consider them to be a cross to bear.

OK, I’m convinced: dsquared was right. You are a homophobe, and a particularly clueless one at that.


mona 09.28.04 at 3:10 pm

Good lord, the crazy creepy paranoid stuff people can come up with when it’s about gays. Here’s a puzzle for the wannabe gay terminator: is being a jerk caused by a virus, a gene, or being seduced by another jerk in the bycicle shed? Is there prenatal screening for that kind of sick creepy idiocy? maybe there should be. Bloody hell. I only hope “carolos” is being very skillfully satirical.

Anyhow. Michael from Oklahoma is going out with a very cute guy from LA who wants to move back there. Sounds like fair compensation for what he has to put up with.


George 09.28.04 at 5:07 pm

If anyone’s still reading this thread, see the following article from this morning’s SF Chronicle: http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/chronicle/archive/2004/09/27/SPG4J8VD2M1.DTL

I’m guessing very few of these parents would block homosexuality in their children, even if they had the chance.


cafl 09.28.04 at 5:12 pm

Where jerks come from — I am reminded of a Far Side cartoon in which God stands at his work bench creating the earth, and reaches for a salt shaker labelled “Jerks”. Caption: “And just to make it interesting”


dsquared 09.28.04 at 7:08 pm

Carolos: by now, I’m pretty sure that you are a researcher working on the second edition of “The Dilbert Future”. So here’s something for you to think on;

By the time “gaystop” is invented, extrapolating from present trends, people like me will rule the world. Since I am the person most like me, this means that it is quite likely that I will be the supreme autocrat. Since I am both horrendously puritannically politically correct and impervious to learning anything about the world, I daresay I will not be a benevolent dictator. Therefore I will throw you and Peter into jail for thirty years.

While in jail, you and Peter will have the following choices:

a) thirty years of abstinence
b) masturbating into a bucket while pretending not to notice each other
c) developing some form of homosexual relationship.

I am afraid to tell you that penological evidence suggests that it is quite probable that you will choose c).

And thus, despite the best efforts of scientists, the dread spectre of gayness will continue to stalk our land, until God Almighty (or possibly Allah, who is also not the best friend of Dorothy one might wish for) decides to call it a day on the whole show and turn us into pillars of salt.


GBleudot 09.29.04 at 7:18 pm

Speaking as a gay man, I agree with everything Carolos said. D2 and his/her supporters are way out of line. Admitting that homophobia exists, even among parents, is not homophobic. It is merely a statement of fact. Despite our progress in the past couple of decades, the picture from this side of the fence is not that rosy. I know my sister and her husband will love her daughters no matter what but I also know that they’ll regret having to watch them go through all the crap I had to go through.


dsquared 09.29.04 at 7:44 pm

Speaking as a former Miss World, it’s helluva easy to claim anything on the internet.

(btw, note that Carolos actually made the claim, not that there was such a thing as homophobia, but that “most parents” would actually selectively abort potentially gay foetuses. Is it really so far “out of line” to suggest that this is plain nonsense?)


Carolos Obscuros 09.30.04 at 6:48 am

“Carolos actually made the claim, not that there was such a thing as homophobia, but that “most parents” would actually selectively abort potentially gay foetuses … ”

No — what I said was that, other things being equal, parents prefer their children to be heterosexually oriented. If (thanks to medical progress) this orientation could be assured at a low cost (10$? 5$?), they would certainly do so. Abortion, however, isn’t a low-cost medical intervention and, besides, many parents consider it to be an abomination — unlike homosexuality, which most parents consider to be a misfortune (as do most gays, judging by their autobiographies).

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