July 19th, 2017
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Author – come on. That’s a tad unfair on Mo. He’s in a gay love affair with J – why would he wig out like that?!? I get the point you’re illustrating, but two guys sleeping in a bed and hanging out all the time? He’s at least playing for both teams…
Sparky_shark, I think the most homophobic are those still in the closet, who rail against it from their pulpit. “It wasn’t me, it was that the little boy tempted me – he was really the devil!” And, of course, “I’ve talked with god, and he’s forgiven me. So keep sending in your tithing.” The difference from this and the gay rights people is that the grp aren’t repentant.
“Homophobia” is a stupid word, etymologically speaking. It means “fear of the same.”
In practice, “homophobia” is a word meaning “if you do not agree with us that homosexuality is as normal and natural as heterosexuality, you are not merely wrong, you are mentally ill.”
Raymond – it’s also a hybrid word, etymologically speaking, since “homo” comes from a Latin root and “phobia” is derived from a Greek one. Then again, the moons of Mars are Phobos & Deimos, so maybe we should call the red planet “Ares”.
“Aww, you just have to suck it up”. Naughty, Mo.
W. Corvi, I can’t really agree with the idea that the most vociferous of the anti-gay loons are closeted homosexuals. By the same logic, this would mean that the most vocal atheists are likely closet believers, or that human rights activists secretly love torture.
Author, have you given up on the ‘thumbs-up/down’?
AoS – the situations are not remotely the same so the same logic can’t be applied. There are many examples of very vocal opponents of homosexuality later coming out of the closet. I’m not aware of atheists who eventually say they had always believed (in fact I often see the exact opposite)
The difference is that being gay is not socially acceptable but being religious is. No one (except maybe Richard Dawkins kids – haha) need to hide their belief from others. Homosexuals on the other hand often have to lie about their sexuality.
@jb, nonsense. Homophobia (in it’s current use, setting etymological discussion aside), means having a fear or loathing of homosexuals. You can think gay people are neither natural nor normal, yet still not fear or loath them.
But if I’m right to take it from your post, and I may not be, that you think homosexuality is unnatural, you’re wrong. Even if it were undesirable, which is a matter of opinion, it would remain natural – it is a naturally occuring phenomenon that people cannot choose or choose not to experience, whether they or their peers want them to or not.
Is it normal? In the sense that it is not the majority state, no, it’s not. In the sense that it’s not how human reproduction has evolved to work, no it’s not. In the sense of being one of the states of sexuality that humans fit into, that we can predict will apply to a certain percentage of the population regardless of culture or laws, yes, it’s perfectly normal.
It’s also “victimless”, unless you concider that the persecution that gay people often suffer makes THEM victims, so is perfectly acceptable. It has absolutely zero negative effect on society or on our prospects as a species, so there is no reasonable reason for anyone to be homophobic. The same cannot be said of bigotry, which is unfortunately natural and normal within the population using the same arguments as above, but NOT in any way acceptable as it DOES hurt people and threaten our prospects.
As normal and natural AS heterosexuality? Define “normal” before anyone can answer that part, but yes, it’s just as natural, and in addition is just as acceptable.
Oh dear, what can they say?
More controversy over being gay.
As it it written
“Gays must be smitten”
For, from sharia they stray.
I just posted a reply to you in last weeks comments.
Is homosexuallity normal?
THAT is a hard question!
EVERYBODY is a mixture (better call it combination) of hetero- and homosexual.
Just the various percentages vary (as well as the degree of acceptation thereof).
Raymond: In fact the original Greek word from which “phobia” derives, means both “fear” and “hatred”. It is mainly the second of these senses that applies in the coining of “homophobia”. Cf “Islamophobia”, “Corbynphobia”, “Obamaphobia”, etc.
AoS: I shed no tears for the thumb-up/downs. I never cared much for them.
Well, from what I can still recall of the holly buy-bull, Jesus was walking all around certain parts of old Palestine with 12 other men. Hmmm……13 guys out in the desert and no women? Makes a person wonder, or it should. Yeah, OK, ok, so I AM an old sarcastic guy, big deal……LOL.
“two guys sleeping in a bed and hanging out all the time?”
I think Jesus and Mo are more in the tradition of Laurel & Hardy or Eric Morecambe & Ernie Wise, Sparky-shark: presexual naifs. The barmaid’s actual role in their emotional lives is as a mother figure and source of wisdom.
bear47, there will have been SOME women with them – who else would cook their food and wash their clothes? But the women aren’t visible because (as in Islam today) looking at women is dangerous.
Son of Glenner wrote: ” I shed no tears for the thumb-up/downs. I never cared much for them.”
I agree. You get a thumbs up for that.
Sexuality is a spectrum. From the completely homosexual to the completely hetero-sexual and all destinations in between! That’s what makes such views such ignorant nonsense.
One of the panelists in a forum stated that homosexuality was a choice. Someone from the audience asked him this brilliant question:
– Tell me sir, when did you choose to be heterosexual?
Note the clever way a penis image directly relating to Mo is hidden in panel 4
You beat me to it, Michael.
DC Toronto, I disagree. To make the statement, as W Corvi did, that “….the most homophobic are those still in the closet” is simply discounting the possibility that many of the most homophobic might just really object to homosexuality.
Being black is socially acceptable yet nobody ever accuses racists of wanting to be black.
Yes, there have been many supposed homophobes who have in reality been railing against their own sexuality, and we freely laugh at their hypocrisy, but was their homophobia simple hypocrisy or did they – or at least some of them -actually believe that homosexuality is wrong and hated their own feelings as much as those of other, out homosexuals. I do wonder how people deal with the cognitive dissonance caused by a belief that homosexuality is something to be abhored whilst having homosexual tendencies.
But I digress. I agree that homophobia and atheism are not comparable, but my original point wasn’t trying to make a like-for-like comparison. I was just saying that being strongly against something shouldn’t be taken as a sign of secret yearnings for that something. It’s perfectly possible to oppose something because you genuinely think it’s wrong rather than being in the closet about it.
And finally….jb, was that a not-so subtle dig at the purity politics of the regressive left, perchance?
To E.A. Blair:
The homo… in homophobia is actually Greek, from homoios (Latinized) meaning “the same” or “similar” as in homoeopathy (treatment by similars) or homeostasis (a word used by doctors when nothing is happening and they want to look as though it is or isn’t something to do with them. Homoeostasis seems to have lost popularity even in British English)
You are right about Ares. In fact, I have seen references to areology (geology) and areography (geography). I wonder whether they will catch on.
I love the way you expose this double standard, Author. You’re like wine; getting better over time.
The message is clear: homophobia is wrong, unless it’s performed by muslims. If you are indignant because of Islamic homophobia, and you point out that Islamic scripture advocates the murder of gays for merely existing, then all of a sudden you’re a racist, Islamophobic, Zionist bigot. However, if you say that you’re outraged by some Christian preacher that stated that homosexuals shouldn’t get married, you’re a modern-time hero.
I don’t care about gay people. In fact, I don’t think homosexuality should even be considered a moral issue, since it’s something that affect only themselves. Nevertheless, I want to be able to say how disgusted I am by a freaking book that calls for the murder of homosexuals for the “crime” of being alive without being labelled as a “racist” or a “bigot”.
Can’t add much more to this. I suppose I could say God/Allah is a cocksucker, except his non-existence yields no mouth with which to suck.
Anonymous (suspected of being Nassar): At last, a limerick which fits the template (more or less) and is pertinent and witty (more or less). Now you’ve got the hang of it, please keep it up!
Before anyone challenges why I should presume to sit in judgement on Nassar, my late father (“Glenner”) was a prolific writer of verse, which at least followed the rules of basic doggerel and was occasionally genuinely poetic.
I am sometimes tempted to follow his example, if no-one is kind enough to dissuade me.
If being gay or straight is a choice, they where do bisexuals fit in to this choice. To us it’s straights and gays that have made some choice to exclude hafe of the human race.
I mean it’s like some people like blonds or red heads…no big deal
Son of Glenner, at some point we had a flurry of Nassar imitators posting doggerel on these threads. It quickly became quite tiresome. So if dissuading you is a kindness, “I must be cruel only to be kind. Thus bad begins and worse remains behind.” Hamlet, act 3 sc. 4 (But I wouldn’t know that without Google.) Please save your poetry for unarmed relatives.
Author, yes indeed. It’s oft been noted that Christians are harshly criticized for what flies below the radar in Islam. Thanks for the link. “Ex-Muslims accused of Islamophobia” is enough to destroy another irony meter. If ever a group had the right to angrily reject Islam, it is ex-Muslims.
AoS – I think you took Corvi a bit too literally. I see it as a dig at homophobes that touches on a fact that is true often enough to resonate. That said, I agree with you that it can not be assumed to be true in all cases that homophobes are closet gays. Still, it’s fun to say it to them and watch them flail and sputter their denials.
Marky – I’m going to go against the grain a bit and suggest that there may have been a time when homophobia was a useful social construct. I”ll explain my thinking …
much of human history has been about scarcity of resources. Particularly food and the necessities of life. In that situation anything that threatens your bloodline could be considered undesirable and potentially harmful to the clan or tribe or family. In that context I can understand some attitudes.
I think we are at a turning point in history – particularly in the western world. We have the abundance of resources, I’d say the luxury, to accept that a few extra gays around who don’t extend the family bloodline won’t doom us to non-existence. I think this also plays out in race and culture issues. A short as 100 years ago there were still many people who despite brains and hard work had serious food shortages. Sharing in such a situation was a true sacrifice and meant you went without some of your food not that you skipped buying a bigger flat screen. This abundance allows us to accept the differences of others without fear of our own survival. But it hasn’t been long that we’ve had this luxury. Our society is changing rapidly – I see it in my family. My parents were more accepting than my grandparents. My kids are more accepting than me.
I believe we have a long way to go, and pointing out that homophobes are probably gay may get their attention (although might not engage them in conversation) and hopefully they’ll start to see that they don’t have to fear those who are different.
I believe I’ve read about some normal incidence of effeminate men in, for example, North American native cultures who led a relatively frugal existence, where it was tolerated and they found things for them to do. Whether the same was extended to women I don’t recall reading. But let’s get back to Islam: from http://psychohistory.com/articles/the-universality-of-incest/
@DC I can see your logic, though it ignores the fact that the gay people in those resource hungry societies could contribute (as hunters, nannies etc), while requiring fewer resources themselves as they have no offspring to support. But, I suspect you’re right about how it works in practice.
A quick passing thumbs up th MarkyWarky’s first post.
I didn’t really understand why AoS commented about thumbs until this moment. They would have saved me all this tapping.
Swallow it! Great strip, Author. I’ll try to make it back to read more of the chatter.
I’ve obviously been away too long as this comment is about to go for moderation.
No, it didn’t. But no not-a-spammer button.
Homosexuality is, of course, purely natural behavior found in at least 400 species (at last count). Heterosexuality is a pernicious choice of toxic males fostered by an evil patriarchy. As any fule kno.
@E.A.Blair and Unfair Vanity: The Mars/Ares thing is because of the convention of how planets and moons are named. Planets are always named for Roman gods, their moons get the Greek names of mythological figures that have some relation to the Greek version of that god. The only exception is Uranus. Since the planet was discovered by the British they named it George. Luckily the name was changed, but as a tip of the hat to the British the moons of Uranus are named after characters from Shakespeare plays.
It seems to me that folks accuse homophobes of being closeted gays as a way of embarrassing them, thus “recognising” gayness as something to be ashamed of. Sounds counterproductive.
How often have we read gleeful descriptions of anti-gay public officials being caught with their… pants down?
Donn, the description of Siwa reminds me a bit of ancient Athens (where couples such as Alcibiades & Socrates were common), and especially brings to mind ancient Sparta (where the bond between a man and his wife was nowhere near as strong as the bond between him and his male lover).
From http://sexandhistory.blogspot.com/2008/06/sparta-experiment-in-state-fostered.html : … … Lycurgus [was] the legendary lawgiver and founder of Sparta, who lived somewhere between 700-630BC. …the primary force of his legislation involved insuring strong sex/love based bonds between men. Constitutional law of ancient Sparta mandated homosexuality. … Older men choose young male lovers. There was no real age of consent in ancient Sparta. Childhood innocence had no meaning in the warrior state. All aspects of the life cycle were subjoined to the aim of making soldiers fit for war and the preservation of the common weal. Its practice was such an integral part of Spartan life that Plutarch writes: “By the time they were come to this age (twelve years old) there was not any of the more hopeful boys who had not a lover to bear him company.” …The life of the Spartan male, therefore, was one of constant dilemma. Though encouraged into homosexuality from youth and conditioned to it by the institutions in which he lived, the law nonetheless required him to marry. … The need for children as well as the preservation of duty to the state inspired this contradictory legislation for Sparta. A frustrating, anxious, unfulfilled life was its product. Lycurgus may well have created the psychological source of the violence on which Spartan militarism rested.
It strikes me as ironic that homosexuality plays a large part in the culture of a place such as Muslim Siwa, while places like Muslim Iran have very harsh penalties for homosexuality. (My irony meter is at the shop, so I’m spared a sproing!)
Marky – good point. My theory is still a work in process and I thought I’d get some interesting feedback here. Thanks.
Raymond, there are also many instances of public ‘moral crusaders’ who rail against extra-marital affairs and such-like being caught with their pants down. When that happens, as when homophobes are caught with same-sex partners, then exposure is, I believe, not done to embarrass but to highlight the hypocrisy.
When accusations of protesting too much are aimed at vocal homophobes without evidence of any participation in the acts they claim to revile (or claim doesn’t bother them but it’s God, y’see) then the intention probably is to embarrass them which I agree is counter-productive.
Walter, welcome back. It has been a while; the spammer box has been gone for ages. How are you?
DC, to add to Marky’s comment, I would think that having homosexual members in a tribe would be welcomed by the heterosexual males as they reduce competition for females which has to be good for in-group harmony.
There would also be the benefit of having males who could be left behind to protect the women and children, as well as the homes of the tribe, against rival tribes when the others are hunting, who could be trusted to not attempt to mate with another male’s female partner.
Acolyte,I think the perception that those most opposed to homosexuality are themselves homosexual, or at least have strong homosexual desires, might come from the fact that to be disgusted by a homosexual act, one must fantasize participating in a homosexual act. Else where does the disgust come from.
There are those who claim that atheists are secret believers. They may be correct to the extent that most atheists have spent a lot of time thinking about religious beliefs, maybe even wishing they could believe such idiotic yet comforting ideas. But rejecting a conclusion that has no evidence is a far cry from rejecting a sexual activity which one finds attractive.
In my experience there are two main causes for homophobia. There actually are closeted gay or bisexual guys – they seem especially densly packed amongst Christian clergy – who have been taught to loathe themselves and hate those who dare to accept themselves. You can recognise them by the conviction that homosexuality is a lifestyle choice (or satanic temptation), because in their minds it is absolutely normal to lust after guys and to chose to condemn it. I think they are so prevalent amongst clergy because due to their constant self-denial their thoughts are always circling around their desire and so they seek out the protection of some church and protective religious garb and constant praying to keep their demons at bay.
The other cause is a form of toxic masculinity. Those guys really don’t desire sex with other guys, but they have the normal wishes to occasionally love, cuddle, cry, be sentimental, be weak, etc, but their code forbids them to show any such “girly” emotions. They don’t hate the actual gay sex act so much as anyone who’s “a fag”, “nancy boy”, “sissy” or acts somehow “swishy” or “gay” according to their twisted definition of manliness (and femininity). They have to curbstomp faggots for daring to own a dick and yet occasionally laugh without victimising someone, have other interests than beer, motors, guns, boasting about sexual conquests or kicking whimps, etc.
Usually the latent homosexual homophobe is mostly concerned with their own gender and doesn’t give much of a damn about homosexuals of the opposite gender – Christian preachers rarely obsess much over lesbians, for example – while the toxically manly homophobe hates dikes usually just as much as faggots, because both threaten fixed gender stereotypes.
Darwin, “might come from the fact that to be disgusted by a homosexual act, one must fantasize participating in a homosexual act. Else where does the disgust come from.
Good question, but then there are things that I think of as disgusting without fantasising about taking part. Necrophilia springs to mind; I’ve never fantasised about doing the nasty with a corpse but still find the idea abhorrent. Voting Conservative is another (but that’s taking things too far).
I’m not defending homophobia, of course, I just think that the assumption that homophobe = closet gay is at best simplistic.
As for the causes of homosexuality, I think there might be many. After all, for all intents and purposes our choice for sexual partners (at least in each individual moment) has to be binary. Either you’re going to shag someone of your own sex or someone of the other sex. I think we can agree that what little wiggle room there is between those choices – with asexuals and intersex people, etc – can be safely disregarded for any larger societal discussion.
So if out of the billions and billions of reasons that can lead to two persons ending up having sex with each other, all of them will end up being either straight or queer, it stands to reason that many, many reasons to go one way or the other will end up being lumped into just three identities: opposite, same, or both.
The fact that we only have a binary choice should not lead to the conclusion that the causes must be binary, too, unless overwhelming evidence supports such a conclusion.
Also, I am sorry I bailed on that earlier discussion, but I was called away on urgent business in another country, and was mostly without reliable internet service (and also the time and peace to comment).
Thank you, Author, very much for getting rid of the facebook thumbs. I hated those so much and am glad to have my good old Cock & Bull back. Much more cosy this way.
Also thanks to MarkyWarky for your response to jb. Couldn’t have said it better.
Hello, Freefox. I can’t disagree with any of that but I will add a third type. Some of those who condemn homosexuality from the pulpits might just do so because their religion tells them it’s a sin, and their concern is to save sinners from going to Hell, so this third type have a genuine, if misguided belief that they are trying to do a good thing.
Heya AoS. Oh, there are probably many, many more causes, and those “casual” homophobes, ie. people who have no personal stakes in it but out of dogmatic principle agree that gays are bad definitely exist.
But they are rarely the loud ones – for the simple reason that being gay itself is victimless and inoffensive. It costs nobody nothing, it’s not obvious, it doesn’t disturb anything by itself. Even if you see two guys or two ladies holding hands or snogging, it doesn’t jump into your face usually. Not unless they have to screw on a restaurant table or in the pews. So, to go out of your way to seek to publically condemn homosexuality, something about it must bug you beyond a mere agreement with some dusty text.
So, maybe you deny yourself other pleasures and chafe under your morality. Than it will bug you that some damn faggots and lesbos march for their pride, right? How dare they demand a sort of freedom you have to deny yourself. Or as I said, you really wish you could screw the alter boy, too, but you know your mommy and daddy will hate you if you do. Then you feel enraged that others made that choice. Or you don’t really give a fuck how people fuck but if you have to posture as He-Man all the goddamn time, you’re gonna hate some weirdo for letting his hair grow long, dying it purple, wearing nail polish and daring to cry at sad music or something of the sort.
For died-in-the-wool active fag-hunting screaming-from-the-pulpit homophobia, something about it must get under your skin. Why expand the energy otherwise?
Here I go again, hi-jacking the discussion to physics. AoS (from previous post) “However, although the Earth appears to us to be static with the entire Universe revolving around us, we know that it isn’t”… The point of relativity is that we don’t ‘know’ that the earth is rotating and are entitled to proceed as though it is fixed. The equations of general relativity are formulated to allow a stationary earth to be used as the fixed reference frame and still return the same laws of physics.
Mahatmacoat, I thought that nothing in the Universe was at rest and that everything was moving in relation to everything else. The Earth turns on its axis and revolves around the Sun, which in turn spins on its own axis and hurtles through space with the rotation of the Milky Way, itself doing the dance with the other galaxies in the local group, and so on.
As I understand it, the ‘static’ Earth is a necessary device which allows us a starting point or central point of reference for the equations. But then, I am just an armchair scientist and my understanding is relative to that status. 🙂
A famous study from twenty years back (Adams, Wright, & Lohr, 1996) indeed found that self-described homophobes were more aroused (measured by penile plesythmograph) by gay porn than non-homophobes (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/8772014)
However–it doesn’t exactly follow that all haters are concealers. Not quite. But if someone goes to a lot of trouble to talk extensively about homosexuality, the details of how disgusting it is to them, exactly what these disgusting people get up then, after a point–you have to ask yourself why are they going on and on about this? I think that a combo platter of fear and anger goes part way to explaining this.
Atheists also fall into two different camps. The “I couldnt care less, I think you’re all bonkers, but it doesn’t directly affect me” crowd (I’m one of these). And the “I got sold this bill of goods as a kid and now I’m hopping mad” crowd.
I understand these (latter) people and sympathsise. I guess if I’d had my mind invaded by unutterable shite for half my life I’d be pretty aggressive towards those who wanted to re-introduce it.
And that’s where the anger comes from I guess, and also the bizarre idea that sexuality is a choice. If you fear you might be gay then anger helps repress it. That part probably feels like a choice to the homophobe who is actually gay. They want to do the whole penis thing but part of them is stopping them. The rest of us? Meh. Live and let live. Put what you like in your mouth, or elsewhere–none of our business either way. But if someone tried to stick religion up me (so to speak) I guess I might appear a bit phobic at that point.
Helena et al:
The fascination with the repulsive can be, and was, stretched to all sexuality.
It is not that long ago that xtian scholars (of various denominatins) were openly wondering (and discussing) “why the good lord had created such an abhorable way of procreation”.
“It is a dirty job, but it has to be done”.
The act itself was allowed as the only way of making new people, but any sexual act not aimed at conception (let alone expressly to prevent it) was forbidden.
Gradually activities as periodic abstinence, and later, coitus interruptus, were (reluctently) allowed, but even nowadays the catholic church forbids condoms and “the” pill.
I find it funny, and a bit suspect, that the Christian Conservative politicians here are calling for a postal plebiscite for legalizing gay marriage (which is ridiculous) around the same time homophobic pamphlets have been reported to be circulating throughout my city’s metropolitan area.
Needless to say, the majority of people who receive them are disposing of them on sight.
Now if only they’d do that with the elected troglodytes.
HelenaHandbasket: The study you refer to is, imo, worth reading only for the enlightening description of the Method used.
“Caucasian heterosexual male volunteers (n = 64) recruited from the Psychology Department Research Subject Pool at the University of Georgia participated in the study. … All participants received partial course credit. The mean age of the men was 20.3 years (range= 18to31 years).”
Remember: This is the University of Georgia where, “In 1994, more than 87 percent of UGA students were white;” Georgia, where “(s)ame-sex sexual activity has been legal (only) since 1998.”
“(I)ndividuals separately rated their sexual arousal and experiences from exclusively homosexual to exclusively heterosexual. Only participants who reported exclusively hetero-sexual arousal and experiences (i.e., ls on both sections) were selected for participation.”
And a phrase I find particularly interesting: “inability to find an adequate number of exclusively heterosexual men who scored in the high-grade nonhomophobic range (0-25).”
And while we’re talking about Georgia, I confess: I can’t look at an O’Keefe painting without embarrassment. The idea of… Eeeew. But I wouldn’t call that suffering from a phobia.
O’Keefe was certainly a florasexual.
Wow Georgia O’Keefe and that plant fetish make for some vivid viewing!
Never heard of that artist before but wow !
Brings new meaning to the word chlorophyll.
I have to admit that I’ve never thought of a flower’s reproductive parts as particularly erotic, and I’ve seen other artists try to represent them as female genitalia with little success, but after seeing O’Keefe’s work I’ll never look at a lily the same way again. 🙂
“It strikes me as ironic that homosexuality plays a large part in the culture of a place such as Muslim Siwa, while places like Muslim Iran have very harsh penalties for homosexuality. (My irony meter is at the shop, so I’m spared a sproing!)”
Ah, but raping little boys is not the same as homosexuality. Homosexuality means being attracted to people who are like you, i.e. other adult males, in the case of men.
And that’s the thing.
Raping someone who has less power than you is okay in a patriarchy. Consensual sex with an equal is the problem.
I suspect that Iran has penalties for adult males raping male children (if that’s actually the case – child abuse so often goes undiscovered, anyway) because they have evolved to consider male children somewhat human, and are therefore disgusted by it.
Iran is very obsessed with the power difference; homosexuality is actually allowed if one part of the homosexual couple gets surgery and takes on the social role of the other sex. I.e. if a gay man labels himself as inferior and submits to all the oppressive rules put on women, he’s an acceptable sex partner for another man.
Not sure how far this is the case for lesbians, i.e. if they can get male privilege (including a female fuckslave) by sacrificing their reproductive organs, enter menopause thirty years too early and take hormones for the remainder of their life. Possibly. Though Iran might get a problem with a lack of fertile women in that case, depending on how many women think it is a good deal.