Homo, faggot, queer… that’s gay.
We hear those words more often than we should. Homosexuals are teased, put down, insulted and misrepresented in school and general society, simply because their sexuality differs from those of the familiar “straight” population. While there has been more tolerance of gays in society in recent years, the public views of gays and lesbians are still degrading and dehumanizing.
Yes, despite improvements, magazines, television, and the internet, still promote a revolting view of the gay “lifestyle.” Stereotypes of homosexual men as effeminate and hypersexual, or lesbians as orgiastic sluts, still dominate.
This is not homosexuality any more than sluttishness and orgies are what heterosexuality is all about. That kind of behavior is just nasty whatever the orientation of the participants.
The media is not the only thing that shows a negative side of gays. In schools, we treat homosexuality like it’s a cancer to society. In psychology class, we learn about how hormones of the opposite sex interact together, ignoring the fact that two people of the same sex can fall in love.
All the history books and the novels and stories we read in Language Arts classes are geared toward “straight” material. Envision being homosexual and having to listen to a typical story of a strong man falling in love with a weak female eight hours a day for 12 years. Schools often treat gays like they don’t exist.
Not always though. In one of my classes, the teacher talked about how a man helped Martin Luther King Jr. in the civil rights movement, but resigned due to his sexual orientation. The man had to identify himself either as gay or black, but he couldn't be both and keep helping King. The teacher asked the class how they identify themselves. Has society stooped so low that you can only take pride and show one characteristic or personal trait, and hide the other as if it does not exist, to put it in the dark corner of your soul and hate it every time you look at yourself in the mirror, and to close up and distance yourself from a conversation when that characteristic is brought up?
Logan says that it "diversity is our strength" and urges students to be true to themselves, but they put limitations and locks on just how different you can be. In the student handbook, it says that any racial slurs or degrading comments toward anyone’s sexuality will lead to automatic suspension. Yet, I repeatedly hear the words “that’s gay” in class and the teacher does absolutely nothing in response.
In the lunch line, the hallways, or your local convenience store, you hear the words faggot, homo, queer used repeatedly to belittle someone’s perceived sexual identity. People continue to use these words as they go through life like it’s a part of breathing. But if one said the “N” word with an "r" at the end of it or they said the “B” word there would be a whole civil rights debate or a fight. Those three words, slurs against homosexuals, are just as demeaning and harmful.
We learn about the Holocaust, where we’re taught that dehumanization is the first step to a genocide. although homosexuality is not a race and cannot be seen. It is something you are born with. Homosexuals, just like heterosexuals, cannot help who they fall in love with.
Society continues to burden itself with homophobia, treating homosexuals like they don’t exist or worse. Phrases like “That’s Gay” are common slang terms. If we don't keep on the path of increasing tolerance for gays, we will be burning them, putting them in gas chambers, running revolting tests on them and putting them in disease infested concentration camps. This may sound a bit extreme, but it has happened before. Hitler didn't only kill millions of Jews; thousands of homosexuals went along for the ride to the gas chambers and ovens.
Have you ever called someone a faggot, homo, or queer? By doing so, you've contributed a few drops to a deep well of inflammable hatred and intolerance that history shows can result in the burning of millions of souls.
The only way you can make it right is to stop yourself or someone else from calling someone something so vile.