Nothing pisses me off more than the use of the word “gay” or “fag” as an insult. “That movie is so gay,” is supposed to automatically indicate that it sucked (not that it had boy-on-boy/girl-on-girl action) or “You’re such a fag,” is supposed to indicate that said fag (as a male) is feminine (femininity being innately bad, of course) or stupid. Being that those of us who aren’t born white, heterosexual and male simultaneously are summarily dismissed due to our “minority status” at one point or another in life, it always grinds my gears when members of a heavily-oppressed minority bash another heavily-oppressed minority group. Like when a black guy uses the word “faggot.”
Unfortunately, this particular black guy, a famed celebrity, has lead a privileged life since his youth that may not have lent itself to much empathy. But he’s not alone. Individuals of all races and economic statuses gleefully take part in homophobic mud-slinging. Why? Because, for some reason, it’s still okay to say “faggot.” The N-word went out with the “politically correct” era of the 80’s and 90’s and it’s a pretty big deal when a high-profile personality uses it nowadays. But, in reality, it hasn’t been that long since it’s been dropped from the acceptable lexicon and – even today – in some shit-brained, ethnocentric circles, it’s perfectly tolerable (if not encouraged.) There’s always the lunatic fringe to contend with. And, of course, there are all of those in the middle who don’t use the word out loud, but mean it.
So here we are again, this time with the word “faggot” – or, as Kobe Bryant prefers to use the term, “fucking faggot.” We’re back at square one, and the word can be spat in any circumstance against anyone of any color or sexual persuasion. Straight or gay, you can be called a “faggot.” Black or white, you can be called a “faggot.” Anywhere but on public television, you can pretty much get away with using this heinous slur, but fortunately Kobe Bryant was dumb enough to get caught, and justice was (sort of) served. He was fined $100,000 and then he gave this apology:
“What I said (Tuesday) night should not be taken literally. My actions were out of frustration during the heat of the game, period. The words expressed do NOT reflect my feelings towards the gay and lesbian communities and were NOT meant to offend anyone.”
Riiiight. Kind of like when I accidentally call my brother a nigger because he’s beating me in a video game. Wait a second… that has never happened in my life. Why? Because I have respect for people of all races and would never use that word in my daily speech or at any time in my life (except to impactfully illustrate its caustic, abhorrent nature.) I don’t toss the N-word around at anyone because I respect black people. I don’t toss the word faggot around because I respect gay people. I don’t use the word “gay” as an insult, because it isn’t one, and it’s despicable to infer that it is.
However, allow me to make this perfectly clear: I am not equating the African-American experience with the GLBT experience. They are completely separate and different experiences and identities entirely with completely separate and different dynamics involved. BUT… is it too much to ask that us minorities band together against the establishment’s systemic, straight-white-male supremacy that prevails in our society?
Kobe. Mr. Bryant, sir. I know you attended Lower Merion High with all of the other well-to-dos and high-profilers. I realize that you’ve been living your celeb-tastic life as though you’re invincible, and the fine they made you pay was more like a trip through the McDonald’s drive-thru… but please examine your conscience and don’t blow this off as another scandal you shrugged off or another penalty you avoided. You’re a star and people – even grownups – look to you for validation and inspiration. You’re talented. You’re loved. So please… I’m begging you… STOP FUCKING IT UP.
To those who claim that men and women are “already” equal, I pose this query: Why can’t I take my shirt off on a hot, summer day? Seems a perfectly rational question; however, some people launch themselves straight into lunatic ravings and bug-eyed convulsions when posed with this particular dilemma. Why? Well, it’s the same old reason every time: questioning gender roles is oftentimes like questioning someone’s religious beliefs. It’s just too uncomfortable for some people. Boys are blue, girls are pink. Boys are tough, girls are weak. Boys are hunters, girls are moms. That’s how it’s always been. That’s how it has to be, or we’ll all explode.
Today, we will discuss the most common arguments against female toplessness. (If you have any arguments against female toplessness to add, please feel free to put them in the comments section and I will answer to them.)
1. Female breasts are sexual; male breasts are not.
Obviously, this is a fallacious argument, as it is entirely dependent on whom you consult. As far as gay men and straight women are concerned, breasts are non-sexual (and sometimes utterly icky.) In addition to that, I’m sure most straight women and gay men would find a bare, male chest to hold similar seductive value (see picture left.) Tell me that ain’t a sexy pair of pillows.
If a man was walking around topless, he wouldn’t be blamed for a car accident had by some poor woman; she’d be faulted for not paying attention. Please place the blame where it lies.
3. It’s immoral. What about modesty?
If your religion or beliefs prevents you from walking around topless, don’t do it. Next.
4. There would be more sexual assaults if women were walking around everywhere naked.
I’m sure the puritans were spewing the same crap when bikini bathing suits first came out. Does anyone realize what bathing suits used to look like? Well… they used to be actual dresses that covered a woman’s entire body, from head to toe. (Obviously, there wasn’t much swimming happening in those things.) However, if sexual assault were A) related to sexual interest and B) the victim’s fault, I would agree – but it’s neither. Men don’t lose control and attack women because they are wearing bikini tops – it doesn’t even happen routinely in strip clubs, where women are fully nude. Men are human too and able to control their sexual urges, just as women are. If a sexual assault occurs, it is due to the defective mentality of the perpetrator – NOT EVER the fault of the victim.
5. Women’s breasts won’t be as sexually interesting or powerful anymore if they become “equal” with men’s chests.
I beg to differ. It will become more routine to see them exposed, but they certainly won’t lose any of their charm. (See LEGAL male breasts, top.)
6. What about the children?
This is pretty much the last argument people make when they run out of things to say. Well, if everyone is concerned about the children, why aren’t they forcing men to cover their nipples as well? You’d think that female breasts would be more acceptable to be seen in the open, as they are utilized for feeding… and, if men and women are equal, what’s the difference between male and female breasts?
7. Women’s breasts “stick out.”
So do fat men’s breasts. But they never get arrested.
8. It’s just not realistic. It’ll just never happen. People aren’t ready for it. Old people would have heart attacks.
This is pointless, defeatist thinking. Period.
9. You can’t have everyone walking around naked! You don’t see guys with their dicks out, do you?
Genitals are sex organs. If breasts shouldn’t be exposed, then get men to cover them up. If they’re okay, then make it equal. That is all.
Anyone else got something to say? Say it! I want to hear from you!!
(BTW, the only organization I found when I searched for Topless Rights was this one: TERA. It is, of course, a Canadian organization. If anyone knows of any other ones – that aren’t headed up by crazies or just plain nudists – that promote EQUAL rights, not NAKED rights, please comment below and direct me to them! Thanks!)