Friday, June 10, 2011


The late psychiatrist and activist, Frantz Fanon, in his book, Black Skin, White Masks, wrote the following:

Sometimes people hold a core belief that is very strong. When they are presented with evidence that works against that belief, the new evidence cannot be accepted. It would create a feeling that is extremely uncomfortable, called cognitive dissonance. And because it is so important to protect the core belief, they will rationalize, ignore and even deny anything that doesn't fit in with the core belief.

We've seen such perverted and freakish public displays as "The Hunky Jesus Contest" [If you have any doubts about my description, check out some links regarding this contest.], "The Million Fag March," "The Folsom Street Fair," and all sorts of displays and demonstrations that affirm the equation of "Gay" with mere "Sexuality," and perverted sexuality at that, that with regular and insistent demonstrations mimic and confirm the very same mind-set of strident homophobes who are the avowed enemies of Gay people.

These displays are offensive on a number of levels, and are designed to be offensive; are designed to alienate potential Straight allies from the cause of equal rights. And to compound this felony, many "Gay Activists" affirm such displays, and even seek to religiously justify them.

Even Kittredge Cherry, a Christian Gay activist who is far more comfortable in sexualizing Jesus than I am, has reservations about parts of the Hunky Jesus Contest, but she also sees benefits of it that I strongly feel are counterproductive and traitorous to the fight for equal rights; the whole contest is blasphemous.

Equating being Gay with being a perverted freak not only plays right into the oppressor's hands, but shows the internalization of the oppressor's mind-set that he/she uses to justify in his/her own mind the oppression of LGBT people.

Hence, many of the oppressed internalize and display the very stereotypes of the strident homophobe, and act out in ways virtually guaranteed to stick a finger in the eye of potential Straight allies by grossly offending institutions and beliefs held dear by the very people needed to help make LGBT equality a reality.

The fact that one is Gay whether or not he/she can have sex; one is Straight whether or not he/she can have sex, largely escapes these displays and demonstrations that serve as mere fodder for the rabid homophobes, many of whom make a handsome living castigating God's LGBT children.

These indecent and often pornographic displays show an alignment, a perverted affinity, with strident homophobes, the result of the internalization of largely unconscious shame and self-loathing taken from the many years of grinding oppression.

And this internalization has got to be transcended and overcome before significant headway can be made in the fight for LGBT equality, an equality that purveyors of these displays clearly do not now want, despite some rhetoric to the contrary.

Applying Fanon's analysis to many Gay people, the oppressed have so internalized the oppressor's mind-set about them that they feel the need to act out according to those internalized homophobic norms, consciously or unconsciously believing the lies perpetrated by strident homophobes, particularly homophobic clergy, who have the temerity to speak with oracular authority, invoking the name of God in their disdain for LGBT people.

Homophobes call Gay people "queer," and many Gay people call themselves "queer"; homophobes call gay men "fags," and many gay men call themselves "fags"; homophobes call lesbians "dykes," and many lesbians refer to themselves by that term; homophobes refer to Gay people as "freaks," and some Gay people act as "freaks"; homophobes refer to Gay people as "perverted," and some Gay people publicly act as "perverts."

If anyone has any doubt concerning some Gay people's view that being Gay is to be a publicly displayed freakish pervert, the exact same view held by strident homophobes and used by them as justification for the denial of equal rights for LGBT people, just check out some links regarding some of the aforementioned public displays!

And if one should tell gay men and lesbians that use of these words, and patently and deliberately offensive public displays, are counterproductive and traitorous, that person is usually met with derision by those with such internalized shame, housing the same belief system as their oppressors, that they refuse to examine, let alone seek to change, the impact of the sources and consequences in their psyches and in society of much of their rhetoric and behaviors.

Simply put: Use of pejorative labels as self-identifiers, and freakish displays one-dimensionally sexualizing Gay identity as perversion, not only affirms the beliefs and rhetoric of strident homophobes, but also highlights the fact that those labels and displays emanate from the very same mind-set of the oppressor that have been internalized by those Gay people who in any way feel comfortable using such rhetoric, and/or engaging in such displays, that are guaranteed to retard the struggle for LGBT equality!
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Tuesday, June 7, 2011


I feel that this post of a few weeks ago is very important and deserving of being posted again:

All too often, many if not most LGBT people are either uncaring about gaining full and equal civil and sacramental rights or allegedly seek to gain those rights by tactics designed to stick a finger in the eye of potential Straight allies.

The horrific treatment of Gay people by many others, not the least of whom are "Christian" clergy, has created a mind-set among many Gay people that reflects the internalization of those hateful messages, resulting in terribly damaged psyches that don't have the time or even the inclination to fight for equality.

Most of LGBT people's psychic energy is geared toward seeking some level of peace in a world that treats them as second-class citizens; engaging in diversionary behaviors, such as preoccupation with socializing, that helps foster needed in-group feelings on the one hand, and also helps take their minds off of the fact that they are treated as second-class citizens in a country that prides itself on its Constitutional mandate for there to be equality under the law on the other hand.

There must be a transformation of consciousness, not only of most Straight people, but of LGBT people themselves, for there to be meaningful activism that assures the goal of LGBT equality for those of us who give a damn about equal rights for everybody.

My good friend, Don Charles, has the following to say on this matter of non-meaningful "activism":

In "March Down Babylon", a three-part call to action originally published at my old blog Christ, The Gay Martyr, I drew a distinction between productive and counter-productive Gay Rights demonstrations. The very first thing I cautioned against was protesters turning out in drag(recognizing, of course, that clothing which expresses a Transperson's gender identity is not drag). Over many years, cross-dressing has become linked with Mardi Gras revelry and Pride parade excesses; Gay activists done up like refugees from a production of Priscilla, Queen of The Desert are simply not going to be taken seriously!

The second (and also third) thing I cautioned against was LGBT folk publicly using pejoratives in reference to themselves. Regardless of how many deluded folk believe otherwise, the hate-inspired epithets of our oppressors can never empower us! On the contrary, they weaken us while heightening the ignorance those evil names were born of. What good will heightened ignorance do for our movement? Has it done us any good in the past? When both Gay Rights demonstrators and anti-Gay bigots describe an act of civil disobedience as "queers blocking traffic", how can anybody in his right mind argue that consciousness has been raised???

My belief is that so much psychic energy of most Gay people is geared toward struggling with their own internalized homophobia, whether they are out or not, that they are neither politically interested in gaining equality and/or engage in frivolous activities, under the guise of "activism" or not, that takes their minds off of the fact that they are viewed as second-class citizens, if not pariahs, in our society.

Until that transformation of consciousness that eradicates, or at least transcends, that internalized homophobia occurs, that light of full equality at the end of the tunnel will continue to remain elusive.
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