Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Oh Dear!!!

ANONYMOUS left the following comment to the 'Oh That's Okay Then ' post:

But many people object to the fact that the word "gay" has now been taken on board by that fraternity, having totally lost its original meaning. Why was the word gay adopted in the first place as it bears no relation to its true meaning??
Why not just use homosexual? Calling myself "normal" is deemed as offensive to those of a non-normal disposition, so I have to describe myself as hetero.

Why would anyone object to the use of a word that is not offensive? In fact it is G.A.Y. , an acronym meaning Good As You.

You write as if you have a problem with us and your use of the word 'normal' suggests you don't see us as being of equal value , especially when you describe as non-normal. Given a little thought one could easily realise why that is offensive, if one cared enough for others to think it through. There are more of us than people with red hair . Are they too 'non-normals'? Thankfully, by your definition, I am not normal. I cringe at the thought, if your thinking is a representative example of 'normal' thinking.

Homosexual, btw, is perfectly fine. And whilst you might be right to call yourself heterosexual, I doubt very much that you ever are in a situation when you have to, unless you frequent gay bars. And you certainly do not HAVE to at all, as what you are is clear.


Iris said...

You know, even the word "straight" is odd. It seems to say that anything other than heterosexual, including being asexual, is somehow straying off the path. I suppose it stems from (traditional) religious belief like so many other things. There's even the phrase "straight and narrow" to denote the "correct" path. I really hate the bigotry. This doesn't say I haven't been a bigot on occasion. Not being of any subset of the population will lead to unintentional bigotry through misunderstanding or ignorance.

That's not the same thing as the kind of bigotry that condemns a group, ANY group, because of a difference in religion, belief, sexuality.

You're dead on. Heterosexuals are rarely, if ever, in a situation to have to explain their orientation unless they put themselves in the situation. Women can call themselves lesbians and there seems to be little issue taken with the word, I suppose because it isn't using an already "taken" word in the English language. What choices do male homosexuals have? It's a cruel turn that there isn't a male counterpart to Lesbos (or is there???).

From my point of view, I know what GAY means and, to me, it's a less offensive term than "queer" because it doesn't automatically label this state of being as "odd" or "wrong" or "strange." I know many homosexuals like the term. I suspect some of them are just plain fed up with the lack of tolerance of some people and feel they want to whack those people in the face with a term that will appear more militant and/or is just a term that says, "I really don't care what you think." In some ways, good for them!

I don't know. Maybe I'm treading on the edges of bigotry here. I don't mean to do that. It just seems that the term "gay" is a bit more self respecting.

I wish we lived in a world where everyone was accepting and homosexuals didn't have to explain themselves or fear retaliation. I also wonder if the world would be a better place if we could just accept that people are "sexual" and forget about the "homo/hetero" issue. It won't happen in my lifetime, but ...

marilyn said...

Hi Colin
An interesting and such a revealing comment left by "anonymous" (which says it all really, doesn't it).
Well,you all know MY name. I'm G.A.Y.,out and proud to be me, and anyone who doesn't accept me for that can ***k off!!!

marilyn said...

p.s. sorry-as I was ranting I forget to say-lovely photos!
Marilyn x

Anonymous said...

Don't you wish people would just get over it? I have no problem with people being what they want to be. I get annoyed at all these people who think what other people are doing in their lives is even any of their business! Good grief.

Unknown said...

"In fact it is G.A.Y. , an acronym meaning Good As You."

I have gay friends and a gay grandson. I never knew it was an acronym. Learn something new every day.

Yarnhog said...

I had no idea it was an acronym, and always wondered about the origin, since to my mind, "gay" always brings up the dance scene from "Singing in the Rain".

I'm a redhead. Do you think I should call myself "gay" or "abnormal"? ;)

kshotz said...

Hi Colin,

I've been following your word usage posts with much interest. My state is currently in an uproar (?!?) because our State Supreme Court just ruled that same-sex marriage is ok here according to our state constitution which has always been one for equality under the law.

The uproar is because they had to use the term "marriage" since that's what the state was being sued over.

There are many who would have been fine with "civil partnership" or "civil union" but are now protesting their offense at the word "marriage." Marriage is, for them, a religious institution and somehow different/special.

I find the whole thing very interesting. I myself have no problem at all with either same-sex marriage or civil union/partnership. I remember when people got all upset about interacial marriage or even, heaven forbid, a Protestant/Catholic marriage. (Some in my knitting circle this morning said they can remember threats of disinheritance/shunning if someone in the family married outside the faith!) If we can move past that sort of bigotted closed-mindedness why on earth are some so worried about gay marriage?????

One of our state legislators has received a death threat because of the action of the supreme court. (He is openly gay.) My local legislator has received threats because he got off the fence and stood up in support of the measure.

It's all very sad and disturbing to watch the local news. I'm proud of my state for leading the way, and I pray that the ruling will not be overturned!


rottweilsteve said...

According to Wikipedia, the "good as you" etymology of the word gay is false ( ).
Amused by the red hair analogy: though my head-hair is grey, my beard and 'tache remain resolutely red/orange.

I'm just glad I don't live in Anonymous's bitter little world...

Susan said...

Gutless wonders hide behind "anonymous." This individual belongs in the trash along with its comments.
"Shaking my head"
When will we ever quit judging people? Case in point. Who has seen the initial response to Susan Boyle on Britains Got Talent; before she sang and then after?
Our compassion for each other and our contribution to society as a whole should be far more important. To be loved is a gift. To give love a blessing. These days a stable relationship is a miracle. I detest lables. When I meet a person I am interested in what ever the discussion is at the time and what interests we share. I really don't think about your religion, race or sex. I am a product of wonderful parents who were ahead of their time.

Anonymous said...

I am disappointed. I just wanted to know the reasons why non heteros feel they need to find labels for themselves all the time. Why do you all feel the need to "come out", explain (and defend) your orientation? I have never had trouble accepting non heteros, my brother in law is one, has never had to "come out", as we always accepted him for what he was. He lives with a lovely partner and we regularly socialise with him and his friends, all of whom have accepted what they are without feeling the need to explain, label, demand equality or anything else. I love these people for that very reason. We meet on an equal basis, sexually, mentally, socially and any other way.

Sorry Susan, but you judged me, you are all judging me. I wanted to non personalise the discussion, being as it was about words/labels, not whether people are/are not gay or whatever. Will it make any difference to know who I am? Are my views any the less legitimate?

As for "marriages", the marriage ceremony clearly states (among other things) it is an institution first ordained for the procreation of children to be brought up in a Christian environment. As the Church still sees homosexuality as illegal, why can't gays just accept that, instead of trying to turn everything on its head for their benefit? Most people have absolutely no problems with civil partnerships or unions, which takes out the religious complications anyway.

If I accept you as gay, why can't you accept me as normal - why does using this label for myself immediately mark me out to be a bigot?

I am not being bigoted, biased, against you or anything, I just really find it difficult to understand why you can't live life without making so many issues out of things. I really feel very sad for you at times (and please don't take this as me being patronising or anything, feeling sad for someone is a perfectly legitimate human emotion!)

I remain,