Monday, March 31, 2014

Bad Gays vs. Good Gays. The New Gay Fundamentalism

There was a time in the recent past when a "Bad Gay" was someone who perhaps didn't know who Cher was, or perhaps wore white pants two weeks after Labor Day.  Someone who was oblivious of the difference between a Mid-Century Modern, eclectic and just plain tacky.  Perhaps a gay that might wear last season's fashions, but without being ironic.

Today's "Bad Gay" is the gay that refuses to accept the new "Gay Fundamentalism". What is gay fundamentalism?  It's a combination of failed public health policy, sex shaming, body shaming bundled up with traditional gay marriage and practiced with the religious fervor of a Talibani.  It's about ensuring that if one person is not happy with the state of the gay world, nobody should be happy. It's about limiting personal choices about sex, protection, relationships and who should get good sex and who shouldn't.  You can see how the new morality plays out on episodes of HBO's "Looking" and in the incoherent rants in the comment sections on articles about Truvada.

First let's encapsulate the new "gay fundies" commandments:

1. Your sole goal as a gay man should be to find a husband and get married, legally.  
2. You must be monogamous for life, because it works so well for straight people. 
3.Condoms every time you have sex for the rest of your life, even if you hate them.
4. Dating not hook-ups.  (at least say you're dating and then don't put a face pic on GRNDR).
5. Don't ever consider any new breakthroughs in HIV prevention, like Truvada (more effective than condoms in preventing HIV) because that means you're having sex for fun, not for the purpose of securing a relationship.(see #2)
6. Sex for fun is BAD! Sex should only be for the purpose of commandment #1.
7. "Bottom Shame" Never, ever admit you're a bottom.  If you are, always say it much...and  say "ouch take it out."
8. If you're in a relationship and have a threesome, it means the relationship is fundamentally flawed and loveless. 
9. You are now a "person of size" and that's OK....but thin and muscular guys have to respect that and have sex with you or you'll whine that gym rats are only into each other. 
10. "Straight Acting only" Shun and deny any "feminine" qualities in yourself and other men. Refuse to be seen with a man with "feminine" qualities and say things like: "gurrrrl, she is such a nelly, not a butch top like me."
11. Thou shalt not be a gay Republican.
12. Say things like "I'm not THAT kind of gay, I'd never go to a Gay Pride Parade."

Obviously "Bad Gays" break these rules and are open to ridicule.  Shunning, cyber bullying, sex shaming occur to men who don't talk the talk or sashay the walk. There is a way to be gay and of course anyone who wants something other than a healthy happy long term relationship with a dog and two children is just wrong.  How dare you concentrate on career and fun before marriage? How dare you enjoy your body for yourself before giving it over, forever to that one perfect man for life.  How dare you be single and 40 and happy? How dare you enjoy being the receptive partner in anal sex, and do it with Truvada and not a condom? How dare a married gay couples go on a gay cruise and "play around" consensually with other adults?  You are all bad gays.

All those "bad gays" make the "good gays" look bad in the eyes of straight people, who don't want to be reminded that gay men are really a lot different than straight men, lesbians and women.

White, thin, "straight acting", top...