Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Does The LGBT Nation Have An Inferiority Complex?

Do you ever wonder if the LGBT nation has an inferiority complex? Sometimes I do.

I know there are days when the headlines make it seem everyone is against us and we have very few friends but I don't believe that's the truth. Public opinion polls show that a majority of Americans support our quest for equality. They just don’t do it with a bullhorn because they're not attention addicts sniffing after publicity like a dieter after a piece of key lime pie.

Vapid fatuous celebrities, sports stars and televangelists make their pronouncements from their ivory towers but let's be honest. Who gives a flying fig what Holyfield thinks about anything let alone gay rights and Alec Baldwin is more famous for his tantrums than his shows. They insult us from one side of their face and feed us empty compliments from the other and we erupt on cue. My question is why? They don't make public policy and they don't have any substantial power anywhere outside their circle of fans so what does it matter what they think? 

I'll admit I've been guilty of taking these nitwits seriously on occasion, something I intend to stop doing. Call it my New Year's resolution. They don't deserve the publicity or the attention and in some cases, that's exactly why they say what they say. Let's take the fiasco with the bearded waterfowl brothers as an example. Nobody makes a bigoted rant to a reporter from a national magazine with a liberal following without anticipating a publicity-inspiring backlash. It wouldn't surprise me to hear that the whole thing was an elaborate stunt cooked up by the family and the network to get a little extra attention. The fake 24-hour "suspension" seems to support the idea. The fact that DD announced the launch of their own line of rifles days after going out of their way to stir up the conservatives is highly suspect as well. I hate to say it, people, but I think we've been played.

It's not the first time. The last two years have seen an increase in stories manufactured specifically to get us stirred up. Remember the 'lesbian war hero' who faked the hate note on her customer's bill? How about the woman who claimed she was verbally attacked by a man in Walmart because her son was seen wearing a sparkly pink headband. 

Does the fact that we automatically rise up in their defense make us saps? No. It makes us sensitive to stories of the bullied and abused because most of us are intimately familiar with that situation. We've lived through hellish things and don't like being put back in a position of defending our right to exist. Nor do we like to see bullying happen to anyone else. We snap and snarl at the slightest provocation and sometimes our energy drifts to the wrong places. That's not a crime but my suggestion is that if we're going to be incensed about something we're better off ignoring anything that comes out of Los Angeles. Instead, how about some outrage over the states where it's still legal to fire someone for being gay even when the company in question has no religious ties? How about some fuming indignation that House Speaker Boehner still refuses to bring ENDA to a vote so we can pass a law to keep that sort of thing from happening? 

We don't need to waste energy defending ourselves to Evander Holyfield or Phil Robertson or Kirk Cameron or anyone else with zero political clout and a barbaric view of who is worthy of basic human rights. Their opinion is irrelevant and the only people listening to them are those who already believe the same thing they do. It's not like we're going to lose support by turning a deaf ear to loudmouths void of logical thought and compassion. So they think we're evil and going to hell. It's not as if they actually get to make that decision. They just like to think they do.

I propose we make 2014 the year we get pissed about things that matter and leave the ignorant ranting of people who don't understand gay because they aren't gay in the trash where it belongs. If they get to a point of asking honest questions rather than doling out blanket condemnation we can talk. Until then we have more important things to do. 

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