Saturday, May 13, 2006

Everyone's a little homophobic

I'm a little bit too.

There's some context as to why I was thinking about this today, but that's another story.

I have no desire to be homophobic, or racist, which I won't lie about either, but in my small way I am. The racism's another blog too, although until this afternoon I'd thought about racism and homophobia in the same way, and now I think they're separate, at least for me.

I've been to college, trained as a dancer, and work in theatre. So I have interacted and continue to interact with gay people pretty frequently. I've even had a couple of gay roommates. However, I'd say that the majority of people I've known were gay and interacted with were trying to pick me up. Maybe not trying very hard, but the degree really isn't important here - the suggestion was there. And it's not unlikely that it was my perception, and not reality, but we're talking about the contents of my head here, so that's not important either.

Some radical feminists say that all sex acts are acts of violence. I think that's going way too far. If a girl gives her informed consent and I have sex with her, that's not rape and it's not violence. And if I choose to let her tie me into some kind of bizarre suspension harness and do weird stuff to me that leaves bruises lasting days, it's still ok. The key being consent. However, if I were to walk up to a complete stranger and tell her I want to tie her down and flog her, she'd most likely be pretty freaked out, and she'd be right. It's no different if all I'm suggesting is some kind of mundane sex we all imagine our parents did once per child.

So if a man tries to pick me up, or a hypothetical me that's a woman, if I don't want to have sex with him, he's threatening violence. If most of the gay men I've interacted with have flirted with me, that means that in a very small way, most of the gay men I've interacted with have threatened violence. Of course, this doesn't only apply to gay men - it's anyone who indicates to me that they want to have sex with me when I don't want to have sex with them.

Of course, I've been on the other side of that interaction, and I know that that's not at all what they meant. But the persistent ones who don't back down always have more emotional weight. And I know in my head that that's not what they meant either, because there are a lot of people, both genders, running around who get off on making people work for that phone number. But homophobia's not an intelligent thing. At least now I can claim that my homophobia is pretty much the same deal as the general distrust a lot of women feel toward men as a group.

I guess this is reason number 54 that I have a hard time chasing girls - seeing my advance as a threat of violence. Yay.

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