“Have you ever come across something that made you so furiously depressed that you wanted to punch your computer screen, scoop up the shards of glass, grind them into a fine powder, mix the powder into a bowl of chocolate pudding, eat the chocolate pudding and then wait impatiently for your insides to be shredded to pieces so that death will find you and you’ll no longer have to live on the same planet as the thing that triggered your meltdown?
I have. It’s actually happened a few times in the past two weeks.
What’s got me so despondent (and dramatic)? A couple of recent blog posts that appeared on HuffPost Gay Voices (which I edit), lamenting, worrying about or lashing out at queers (like me) who don’t want to live a heteronormative life.”
I was very happy to see this because the HuffPo Gay Voices section has become primordially a mouthpiece for the conservative crowd- so much so, that I don’t even bother reading it any more. I get Noah Michelson’s articles in my inbox, and that’s about it. He stands apart and isn’t obsessed with monogamous gay marriage/military/adopted babies/conforming to the extent one ceases to be one’s self. This week he’s (himself) annoyed by two recent Gay Voices articles. One suggests we don’t conform enough and the other says “Most millennials believe that being gay or straight is incidental to our existence.” I can’t say I’m as annoyed as Noah, but only because I’m used to it. The bargain basement analysis by Mark Rosenberg and Brian Stone are, if nothing else, utterly ridiculous. Asking a gay person to change the way we view sexuality as to achieve equality is tantamount to asking all women to wear veils so they can be accepted by Muslim extremists. Equality indeed. This notion that we only merit rights if we can emulate the lives of others is an extraordinary example of misguided if not defective thinking. That a person’s sexuality is a ‘minor’ part of their existence is equally absurd. Sexuality influences all aspects of life. As much as we like to show off the buff gay military guy whose mere existence proves we’re like ‘everyone else’- for every one of him, I promise you there’s a flamboyant hairdresser, there’s the interior designer, there’s the one who collects Barbie dolls… Real equality is the right to be whoever we are, it’s certainly not pretending we’re just the same. And I don’t use the word pretending lightly. Bring me a gay man who says their sexuality is a minor part of his existence and I’ll sit him down and remind him of the awkwardness of adolescence, the discomfort with locker-room talk, the confusion, the questioning, the realization our lives are not like everyone else’s- no matter how hard we try to make them appear as if they are.