D.A.D.T.

I’m gonna start off by saying that I don’t know very much, if anything, about the military. What I do know is what I see in movies, see in the news or what little I know from family members in the armed forces.

That being said I’m pretty sure most will agree that when one thinks of the United States Armed Forces you don’t really think about social progression. You might think about guns, masculinity, bravado and any number of clichéd stereotypes.

I was often confused about what all the hub-bub was about when the topic of homosexuals allowed to do their job without having to hide who they are came up.

I think both heterosexism and religious prejudices come into play here. Indeed heterosexism could be argued as being a spawn of religious ideology but that’s an arguement for another blog.

Heterosexism is, like any -ism out there, a systematic means of denying any non-hetereo rights and privileges based upon their sexuality. I like to remind some of what a true -ism unlike what people commonly use like racism when it’s usually prejudices instead of systematic things. Or the use of irony. But I digress.

Like I said I was confused as to what the problem was. The arguement over unity cohesion seemed flimsy as best because 1. ethnic minorities have functioned in the American army for years before this and there was little to no major issues. 2. women have the same story, though some small changes had to be made. Finally 3. If Israel can do it, why can’t we?

A thought occurs to me. If heterosexual men are somehow fearful or are repelled at the thought of being viewed in a sexual way outside their own terms? How about they ask their fellow female compatriots?

I just think the whole thing is stupid, as much as I find D.O.M.A. stupid. The arguements made against allowing gay men and women to be allowed to put their lives on the line for our country ONLY if they pretend to be straight is ridiculous. Especially since a steadily growing number of soldiers don’t care one way or another if their fellow is gay or straight because, in the field, it only matters if you have one another’s back and don’t shoot it.

Personally I believe that the politicians just use broad social issues like homosexuality as a means to an end and they don’t seem to care how many lives are destroyed in the process.

Colour and the Rainbow Flag

 What do you think of when you think of a gay person? Chances are you think of a Caucasian individual. Why is that? Undoubtedly there are gay Asians, Indians, First Nations, African, Arabs, etc. in the world. So why do we tend to see only Caucasians on the television?

To cry out racism would be a superficial arguement because the various cultures that make up the American society carry with them their own prejudices as to the level of acceptance of homosexuality.

I’m going to consciously ignore the First Nations because there isn’t much in the way of hard evidence saying one way or another how they were treated; though a small look on the internet suggests that they were accepted as just another human being.

Looking at the second eldest ethnic minority in America, there is a little more contention on the subject. In the initial days of the Civil Rights/Gay Rights (I believe they are one and the same, but some would argue otherwise) movements there was little visible difference between ethnicity and homosexuality. We shared a common struggle, therefore the enemy of my enemy was my friend. Differences within the gay community seemed to become noticeable during the Reagan years and socio-economic disparity grew. While Caucasians climbed up the proverbial ladder, those within the African community remained stagnant or fell. With the coming of the HIV/AIDs crisis did we only come together again because no-one but ourselves were going to help each other. An arguement has been presented to the African community that it is because of their own prejudices of homosexuality that part of the problem has persisted within the gay community.

There was an interesting article I found about homosexuality and the “black church” and the coming out of the Rev. Benjamin Reynolds. One quote from the article was “I think the black church has a long way to go in this area,” he told a reporter. “The oppressed, when they feel a place where they’re free, they’ll find others who they’ll oppress.” I found this to be something that has confounded me for as long as I’ve been aware of this paradox. Why would any community that has had a history of oppression knowingly, and willingly, go after another?

My African blood may be too thin to sympathize with the African community in America but their blood is still my blood and it does hurt me on a different level when I see them attack my gay “brothers and sisters” because of who we are. Sometimes I would like to remind them that, even though their level of oppression isn’t what it used to be, we still share a commonality.

I’m leaving the links to the articles I read below:

The Black Church and Homosexuality

Thoughts on Race in the Gay Community