The Baystate Objectivist

The Baystate Objectivist

Friday, September 7, 2007

I'm Queer but I'm not a Fag

There's a difference.

In the early years of the last century one of the best ways for black performers to fit into white society and make some serious money was to put white make-up around their mouths, sing and dance and tell jokes. The jokes mostly made fun of black people themselves, with humorous plays on the notion that the black people of those times got drunk on moonshine, stole chickens and were obsessed with sex. White people loved that kind of entertainment, it played up to their worst opinions about black people but in a funny, reassuring way. It made black people and their stereotypical foibles seem safe and even endearing. It made racism seem okay, because after all, black entertainers themselves appeared to be accepting and profiting from these negative stereotypes.

Of course the more times change the more they stay the same. Only now it's gin and blunts instead of moonshine, and dope dealing instead of chicken stealing. There's still singing and dancing and the preoccupation with sex. And it still makes white people feel justified in looking down on black folks, because after all, isn't it black people themselves perpetuating these stereotypes? That playing these roles for white people's entertainment is one of the few ways for blacks to make big money, is overlooked even by many blacks themselves, who look with envy as the performers laugh all the way to the bank.

A similarly stereotypical and destructive image has arisen around gay people. Stripped of its societally imposed preconceptions, homosexuality is just a biological circuit breaker nature uses to control population growth. It was the American scientist and philosopher R. Buckminster Fuller, who first noticed this phenomenon in nature. When a large number of a given species of plants are destroyed for one reason or another, the surviving plants will dramatically increase their seed production. Conversely, when the population of a plant species becomes too crowded, then per plant seed production drops. The same thing has been observed in mammals. When laboratory mice are allowed to reproduce at will, the more overcrowded the environment becomes the more homosexual behavior will increase between the mice living in the cage. Dr. Fuller concluded that it was foolish to think that plants and our fellow mammals have these built in tendencies to control their populations, but that somehow humans do not. When he made these observations way back in the 1930's, he predicted that as the human population increased, so would the prevalence of homosexuality as a natural safeguard against overpopulation.

The passage of time has proven Fuller's theory correct. As the human population has increased, there has been a corresponding increase in the prevalence of homosexuality, exactly as you would expect based on the behavior of all other living things when their population gets too high. To put it in non-scientific terms, God made gay people in order to save the world from uncontrolled population growth.

Not that we get much thanks for it. Instead we are forced to endure all kinds of stereotypes designed to make us endearing to the straight people who will only accept us if we fit certain characteristics they feel safe about. We're supposed to be funny. We're supposed to be good at fashion. We're supposed to be feminine and talk with a lisp so as to easily distinguish us from "real men." We're supposed to have good taste. Our purpose on Earth is to make straight people more fashionable. Instead of blackface, it's pinkface. We're born queer, but society wants to turn us into fags.

Just because I was born biologically programmed to prefer non-reproductive sexual activities as a natural result of the Earth approaching its maximum sustainable human population; does not mean I automatically have these stereotypical traits that straight people have decided I should have to keep me safely distant and distinct from them. I prefer Grace Slick to Cher, the Grateful Dead to the Village People. I dress like a slob and I don't know a damn thing about interior decorating. I can't help you with your bad taste. I'm not swishy and I don't have a lisp. Please don't associate me with priests who chase altar boys. They are called pedophiles. Please don't associate me with perverts who hang around public toilets. They are called United States Senators.

In other words, I've got a dick and I act like it. My, what a surprise! When you try to put me in a box you've labeled "gay" and then demand I conform to your stereotypical expectations, I have a simple statement to make in reply:



Bill Dusty said...

Tom -

I think your comparison between the two generations (on the perception of race) is accurate. It also doesn't help that so many folks in the poorer black communities - including their so-called leaders - continue to blame others for their social and economic plight.

Also, I can personally vouch for the fact that you do indeed dress like a slob! ;-)

sodafixer said...

what about that village people t shirt you had on??

Mary E.Carey said...

I'd never heard the Buckminster Fuller theory, but this strikes me as one of your classic entries.

Kirby said...

I blogged some thoughts, with a link back to this post here.

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