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Author Topic: Is society really as accepting as it claims?  (Read 374285 times)

Offline shelber

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Is society really as accepting as it claims?
« on: February 11, 2007, 12:23:00 PM »
so for the last couple of days i have been reading through different messages and replies, and it occured to me that there is a feeling of hush up amongst some replies.

now i am not going to say where, or who, but it occured to me that maybe some people, including some of us in the gay and lesbian realm dont want to embrace "gayness" and possibly are just offering lip service so that they can be patted on the back for being such wonderful warm, caring and accepting citizens.

but then look out if you should suggest something that goes against their beliefs, for example and just because the forum is about bbm i use this.

jake....is he gay or is he straight. well i am not 100% sure, i have my suspicions but until the man comes out and says either way, well then thats what they are suspicions, that can be said the same for those that think he is straight.

what i dont understand are the responses that give off the "he just cant be one of those people" vibes. and yet, the same people that say these comments are right in there fantasizing about him and heath in various sexually scenes. but when it comes down to it, he just isnt allowed to  be gay.

i dont usually get to involved with what others think as i believe that everyone is entitled to their opinions and are able to have their own thoughts and theories, but when i see people on the boards come right out and tell another person who is also allowed to have their own thoughts and theories that they are wrong, and basically trying to hush them up, well i wanted to post the question

are we as accepting as we all want the rest of the world to believe, or are we putting on a fine performance while in our hearts the thoughts about accepting someone for their sexual preference are non existant

just a ramble from someone who doesnt usually start topics.... :)

shelly


*edited by moderator to capitalize first word*
« Last Edit: October 08, 2007, 07:49:46 PM by Melisande »
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Offline Lola

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Re: is society really as accepting as it claims?
« Reply #1 on: February 11, 2007, 12:40:00 PM »
Oh I love to be the first one to answer a topic!  ;)  You make a good point.  I think I am very "accepting" so then I have to ask myself would it bother me if Jake was gay?.  No of course it wouldn't.   The thing is I never understood about the debates on his sexuality is................whether he is gay or straight, does anyone on here (male or female) really thing they have a chance with him?  LOL

And secondly up until Brokeback Mountain would anyone have ever questioned his sexuality?  Probably not, so why just because he did such a good job in the movie, do people question it now?

I mean for that matter, anyone in Hollywood, any actor or actress could be gay.  But as you say until they come out and say "I am gay" why speculate?  And why should they even come out, I have always felt that is something that really is no ones business?

I remember finding out George Michael was gay (I was probably the last person to figure it out) I thought, hmmmm good for him.  I wish him well, guess we aren't going to be running off together after all.  ;)

 
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Offline shelber

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Re: is society really as accepting as it claims?
« Reply #2 on: February 11, 2007, 12:48:39 PM »
Oh I love to be the first one to answer a topic!  ;)  You make a good point.  I think I am very "accepting" so then I have to ask myself would it bother me if Jake was gay?.  No of course it wouldn't.   The thing is I never understood about the debates on his sexuality is................whether he is gay or straight, does anyone on here (male or female) really thing they have a chance with him?  LOL

And secondly up until Brokeback Mountain would anyone have ever questioned his sexuality?  Probably not, so why just because he did such a good job in the movie, do people question it now?

I mean for that matter, anyone in Hollywood, any actor or actress could be gay.  But as you say until they come out and say "I am gay" why speculate?  And why should they even come out, I have always felt that is something that really is no ones business?

I remember finding out George Michael was gay (I was probably the last person to figure it out) I thought, hmmmm good for him.  I wish him well, guess we aren't going to be running off together after all.  ;)



thanks lola for your response, lol, i have such a fear that i word things wrong or dumb that it comes off as blah blah blah blah.

i guess to add to something you had said:

" does anyone on here (male or female) really thing they have a chance with him?  LOL" - i wonder if that could take away from the "fantasy" is it more fun to have two straight males (supposedly) having this wild love affair, than 2 gay males having the same wild love affair, maybe having them straight keeps it hot and new....

maybe i should have a nap before i write anymore. lol

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Offline Lola

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Re: is society really as accepting as it claims?
« Reply #3 on: February 11, 2007, 12:58:43 PM »
Well, I am not a gay male, but I have heard gay guys on here say it would be fun to nab a straight guy.  I am not even so sure that there may not have been a little "spark" between them doing filming.  Why not, why would that be hard for people to believe?  They are young, good looking and pretty open minded.   I guess only they know for sure!  ;) And again, would that make them gay?  I would like to think we could live in a world, where we could see the beauty (attraction) in everyone, males to other males, females to other females, whether they were gay or straight.
 
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Offline shelber

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Re: is society really as accepting as it claims?
« Reply #4 on: February 11, 2007, 01:00:45 PM »
Well, I am not a gay male, but I have heard gay guys on here say it would be fun to nab a straight guy.  I am not even so sure that there may not have been a little "spark" between them doing filming.  Why not, why would that be hard for people to believe?  They are young, good looking and pretty open minded.   I guess only they know for sure!  ;) And again, would that make them gay?  I would like to think we could live in a world, where we could see the beauty (attraction) in everyone, males to other males, females to other females, whether they were gay or straight.

HURRAH'S AND HUZZAH'S

when you find that world would you let me know, i will move there in a heart beat
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Offline Lola

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Re: is society really as accepting as it claims?
« Reply #5 on: February 11, 2007, 01:04:35 PM »
LOL I have always encouraged my boys to do that.  I remember the one guy was a big Smashing Pumpkins fan, I asked him once "do you think Billy Corogan is attractive" and he said "yea" I knew then I had did my job!   ;D
 
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Offline Kelpersmek

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Re: is society really as accepting as it claims?
« Reply #6 on: February 11, 2007, 01:20:30 PM »
I can't comment one way or another on what you've seen among the threads, as I haven't been reading much recently...

One observation for whatever it is worth though:
I was having a conversation with someone recently that kind of crystalised this.  It always seems to me that things like homophobia and racism are lurking just under the surface at any sufficiently large social gathering.  The thing is, a few years ago no one would have batted an eyelid at a homophobic comment.  Quite the opposite was usually true.  But now it is generally accepted in the more 'enlightened' social groups that homophobia is wrong. 

That doesn't constitute a blanket acceptance though.  What it puts in place instead is a reluctance to put forward the kind of homophobic remarks and jokes that would have been acceptable ten years or twenty years ago.  Occasionally you'll find one person crosses, shyly, into territory they know is now largely unacceptable.  A small and 'relatively inoffesnive' remark will be made.  If this goes by without anyone saying something, a few more offensive jokes might follow it up, as the person relaxes and begins to reveal exactly what bigotry they have been bottling up inside.

It takes a lot of work to break down predujices, and some bigots will never abandon their hateful views, but by making it less and less socially acceptable to openly make such offensive 'jokes' we can gradually get the bigots to keep their mouths closed.  Without their hate rhetoric being spewed out (intentionally or otherwise.. a lot of bigots seem to think that they're being perfectly reasonable) we have a better chance of bringing up the next generation (and the next and the next) as open minded people who don't immediately hate someone based on some perceived difference. 

The thing is, we're living pretty much (as far as I can see) in stage 1 of erradicating homophobia.  Lots of people still see it as acceptable.  Lots of religions teach that homosexuality is to be hated and persecuted.  We're living in the age where we need to still speak up and educate people, or let them know that whatever they think privately, it's *not* ok to try and spread their own brand of hate.  For many of us today though, we were raised with the inherent homophobia of our culture.

I frequently find myself questioning whether what I have said or thought or done is homophobic.  I have been brought up and exposed to so many forms of media, teachings, and opinions that are inheretly homophobic, that some of it is bound to have worked its way into my beliefs and attitudes.  It's my task to strike a balance within myself between being overly sensitive and seeing homophobia everywhere; and rooting out those last corners of bigotry within myself.  It's a tough job, because it involves questioning things that society as a whole is still not questioning.  It's a task that we all have to set for ourselves.

If we succeed, hopefully, then these attitudes should begin to die out.  Those that come after us might have a much better view, and look back on our barbaric attitudes in disbelief.  Here's hoping.

Anyway, what I am trying to say is that I hope what you are seeing is a part of this process, and that it's a good thing that you are bringing a little light onto it.  Sometimes people aren't even aware of these lingering attitudes, and it can be even harder to dig them out of yourself when you believe you most certainly *aren't* homophobic.  We've all been damaged by our upbringings in this regard, and we're probably not as accepting as we'd like to believe, or are quick to announce. 

Here's to everyone struggling to make themselves a better person.

Offline Lola

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Re: is society really as accepting as it claims?
« Reply #7 on: February 11, 2007, 01:29:32 PM »
WOW that was very well said.

If I can add, I think the only way to really get rid of any trace of homophobia in a person, is to let them know a gay person.

Same with racism or any other form of prejudice.

My kids were raised Roman Catholic, although honestly (believe it or not) I don't think anyone ever told them homosexuality was a sin.

But at some point, we met and became friends with alot of gay people.  That was what kept them on the right path.  They got to know our friends, they loved them for who they were.

Had they never known them, they may have had all sorts of preconceived notions about gay people.

I mean people are often afraid of what they don't know.

Once you see that people are just like us, there is nothing to fear.

My youngest guy was dancing to YMCA at a party with one of our gay male friends a few months ago, I thought it was wonderful.   Like I said he doesn't know any different.  I didn't raise him to fear someone who is different than him.

I think that job (and it is a important job) lies with the parents.  And when he has kids, hopefully it will never even be a thought or question.
 
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Offline Lyle (Mooska)

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Re: is society really as accepting as it claims?
« Reply #8 on: February 11, 2007, 01:54:17 PM »
But as you say until they come out and say "I am gay" why speculate?  And why should they even come out, I have always felt that is something that really is no ones business?

If you had said above "Until they come out and say I am straight why speculate?" that answers your question.  Straight people don't have to make a deal out of who and what they are.  A generalization is that straight people think everyone is straight unless they're told differently and gay people "speculate" everyone is gay unless told differently.

If there is nothing wrong with being gay, why not speculate?  Does it tarnish the person you are speculating about?

And to say "why should they even come out", well why shouldn't we be able to grow up like straight people do?  Without any fear of being who you are in that area, so that coming out wouldn't even be a necessary term.  If it's "no one's business" then I don't want to hear about any straight person's marriage or having children or anything else about their lives, either.  We should all act as though everyone is single and asexual.

The biggest point is, if there is nothing wrong with it, there would be no reason NOT to speculate or talk about it or anything.  The only reason people don't want to come out is because it is not truly acceptable in this society and all sorts of consequences can occur to a person who does come out.  That's why people should come out.  Those who are out know it is better. In general, have you ever known anyone who has come out saying they wish they hadn't?

Offline shelber

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Re: is society really as accepting as it claims?
« Reply #9 on: February 11, 2007, 02:04:05 PM »


If there is nothing wrong with being gay, why not speculate?  Does it tarnish the person you are speculating about?


there is nothing wrong with being gay,lol or straight for that matter teehee. it shouldnt tarnish them, what i my point was is why is it some people will go out of their way to try and stifle someone when they say "jake is gay.." or even any celebrity for that matter.

why is it so important for some folks to make sure his straight identity is clear with no blemish, i mean what another person thinks will not change my opinion (which is he is about as straight as a paper clip, but thats my opinion) and i wont try and change anyone elses, but i think we all have the right to say what we think, without having to be constantly chided, or subtly rebuked for saying what we think. which is what i should of said in the beginning, lol and thats another reason folks why i dont start topics, lol  ;D
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Offline Lola

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Re: is society really as accepting as it claims?
« Reply #10 on: February 11, 2007, 02:12:59 PM »
But as you say until they come out and say "I am gay" why speculate?  And why should they even come out, I have always felt that is something that really is no ones business?

If you had said above "Until they come out and say I am straight why speculate?" that answers your question.  Straight people don't have to make a deal out of who and what they are.  A generalization is that straight people think everyone is straight unless they're told differently and gay people "speculate" everyone is gay unless told differently.

If there is nothing wrong with being gay, why not speculate?  Does it tarnish the person you are speculating about?

And to say "why should they even come out", well why shouldn't we be able to grow up like straight people do?  Without any fear of being who you are in that area, so that coming out wouldn't even be a necessary term.  If it's "no one's business" then I don't want to hear about any straight person's marriage or having children or anything else about their lives, either.  We should all act as though everyone is single and asexual.

The biggest point is, if there is nothing wrong with it, there would be no reason NOT to speculate or talk about it or anything.  The only reason people don't want to come out is because it is not truly acceptable in this society and all sorts of consequences can occur to a person who does come out.  That's why people should come out.  Those who are out know it is better. In general, have you ever known anyone who has come out saying they wish they hadn't?


Do gay people think everyone is gay until told differently, is that true?  And yes I would assume "the majority" of people are straight, because aren't there more straight people in the world than gay?

And why wouldn't you want to hear about peoples marriage and kids etc. etc.   Gay people are marrying and having families!    I want to hear about that, I do!

And speak to Nathan Lane, because he kept quiet about his sexuality for years.  And he said he did it because it really was no ones business.    And he finally did come out and I don't believe he has suffered any ill effects.  People love him and still do, they don't care who he sleeps with.
 
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Offline lowcountrygirl

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Re: is society really as accepting as it claims?
« Reply #11 on: February 11, 2007, 02:17:02 PM »
But as you say until they come out and say "I am gay" why speculate?  And why should they even come out, I have always felt that is something that really is no ones business?

If you had said above "Until they come out and say I am straight why speculate?" that answers your question.  Straight people don't have to make a deal out of who and what they are.  A generalization is that straight people think everyone is straight unless they're told differently and gay people "speculate" everyone is gay unless told differently.

If there is nothing wrong with being gay, why not speculate?  Does it tarnish the person you are speculating about?

And to say "why should they even come out", well why shouldn't we be able to grow up like straight people do?  Without any fear of being who you are in that area, so that coming out wouldn't even be a necessary term.  If it's "no one's business" then I don't want to hear about any straight person's marriage or having children or anything else about their lives, either.  We should all act as though everyone is single and asexual.

The biggest point is, if there is nothing wrong with it, there would be no reason NOT to speculate or talk about it or anything.  The only reason people don't want to come out is because it is not truly acceptable in this society and all sorts of consequences can occur to a person who does come out.  That's why people should come out.  Those who are out know it is better. In general, have you ever known anyone who has come out saying they wish they hadn't?


Bless you, Lyle, I agree with absolutely everything you said!!

And Shelly, my love, bless you, too, for starting this topic!
"Ya ain't got a problem, Hank... Yer justa l'il sad is all... 'S ta be 'xpected when bad stuff happens... 'n ya got a righ' ta be sad 'bout it...", Ed in Ed and Hank.

(Thank you, myeyesain'tblue!)

Offline shelber

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Re: is society really as accepting as it claims?
« Reply #12 on: February 11, 2007, 02:20:20 PM »
But as you say until they come out and say "I am gay" why speculate?  And why should they even come out, I have always felt that is something that really is no ones business?

If you had said above "Until they come out and say I am straight why speculate?" that answers your question.  Straight people don't have to make a deal out of who and what they are.  A generalization is that straight people think everyone is straight unless they're told differently and gay people "speculate" everyone is gay unless told differently.

If there is nothing wrong with being gay, why not speculate?  Does it tarnish the person you are speculating about?

And to say "why should they even come out", well why shouldn't we be able to grow up like straight people do?  Without any fear of being who you are in that area, so that coming out wouldn't even be a necessary term.  If it's "no one's business" then I don't want to hear about any straight person's marriage or having children or anything else about their lives, either.  We should all act as though everyone is single and asexual.

The biggest point is, if there is nothing wrong with it, there would be no reason NOT to speculate or talk about it or anything.  The only reason people don't want to come out is because it is not truly acceptable in this society and all sorts of consequences can occur to a person who does come out.  That's why people should come out.  Those who are out know it is better. In general, have you ever known anyone who has come out saying they wish they hadn't?


Bless you, Lyle, I agree with absolutely everything you said!!

And Shelly, my love, bless you, too, for starting this topic!


well there is a reason why i did,lol, i am not sure if i was clear on why i did though, but alas, i am enjoying the conversation.
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Offline Kelpersmek

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Re: is society really as accepting as it claims?
« Reply #13 on: February 11, 2007, 03:53:09 PM »
If it's "no one's business" then I don't want to hear about any straight person's marriage or having children or anything else about their lives, either.  We should all act as though everyone is single and asexual.

I think that perhaps the phrase "no ones business" is less to do with "I don't want to know, don't tell me", and more like "it shouldn't even be a question most people consider".

Now, lots of people speculate as to Jake's sexuality, and this is understandable within this community.  But if I walk into a shop to buy a loaf of bread, the question of my sexuality should never arise.  It's not related to the context, unless the shop keeper develops a sudden crush on me (hey, it could happen.  It could.  Okay, not likely, but possible.  Thanks buddy, my self esteem's in piece now  :P ).

What does it really matter if Jake is straight or gay?  Do we need to speculate on who is and is not a vegan?  No, because it simply doesn't matter in most circumstances.  I think (and correct me if I am putting words into your mouth) that that was what was being said.

The biggest point is, if there is nothing wrong with it, there would be no reason NOT to speculate or talk about it or anything. 

There's no reason not to speculate, except to respect the privacy of the person in question.  It's not so much an issue of Jake's sexuality, as I see it, but rather that he has not chosen to make that information public.

I am grasping for a good comparison... let's see...

Imagine you walk into a shop, and I am the shopkeeper (or minding the shop for the previous shopkeeper, who talked me into it because it turns out they do have an enormous crush on me).  Anyway, you wander past, say "hi" and go look at tins of beans.  I may privately try and guess all sorts of things about you, because it is the nature of human interaction to want to get a few conclusions under our belt before we even get going.  Straight or gay?  Vegetarian or omnivore?  Dog person or cat person?  What kind of job might you do?  Is that your real hair?

There's no harm in me speculating on any of these things.  I might be spot on or waaaay off.

Now though, imagine another person wanders into the shop, and comes over to tlak to me.  We greet each other and then I begin to speculate out loud to the new person: "See that shopper over there... what colour do you think their underwear is?  What sort of music do you think they like?"

Now, black, red, white or pink, it doesn't make a big difference what colour underwear you're wearing, but that doesn't mean you are comfortable with it being a topic for open debate and discussion, right?

What I am saying is, private speculation is one thing, public discussion is a lot more likely to get a "That's none of your business" response.  Hope that makes sense  ::)

Offline Lyle (Mooska)

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Re: is society really as accepting as it claims?
« Reply #14 on: February 11, 2007, 03:59:06 PM »
Do gay people think everyone is gay until told differently, is that true?  And yes I would assume "the majority" of people are straight, because aren't there more straight people in the world than gay?

If you lived where I do, you would assume most people are gay. 

Quote
And why wouldn't you want to hear about peoples marriage and kids etc. etc.   Gay people are marrying and having families!    I want to hear about that, I do!
 

I was referring to your statement about someone's sexuality being no one's business.  No one really says that in terms of straight people, do they, cause it's just accepted if you are straight.  So no problem.  It's only a problem when you are gay.  Hence, you'll hear people say, I don't care if they're gay as long as it's not around me.  But gay is more than just who you are sleeping with.  It's a sensibility.  The other night Tavis Smiley was alluding to Cybil Shepherd from The L Word that she (her character) couldn't know she was gay unless she'd acted on it.  Which is comepletely naive and ridiculous.  Gay people know they are gay even if they've never had a sexual encounter, but, in general, straight people mostly think it's all about sex.  That's no more true than it is with straight people.

Quote
And speak to Nathan Lane, because he kept quiet about his sexuality for years.  And he said he did it because it really was no ones business.    And he finally did come out and I don't believe he has suffered any ill effects.  People love him and still do, they don't care who he sleeps with.

Like I said, it's about MORE than sexuality.  That's why people surmised  Nathan was gay before he ever came out.  Gay people always say it's no one's business, but they say it because they are afraid of things.  That it'll hurt their careers, or they're afraid they'll lose money, or they might fear for their safety or a myriad of other reasons.