|Me with my 2017 GLAAD Media Award|
On Monday, this blog turned 15 years old.
It's been a labor of love these past 15 years and it came from a lot of pain. My growth as a gay man began in earnest while I was in college in the early 1990s, but it was a stilted growth because of the climate. We didn't have Will and Grace or Ellen DeGeneres back then. Homophobic shame was the norm and even rumors that you were gay would cause you a lot of trouble and even a possible beatdown in some cases. I especially know about the near beatdown. People said ugly things about you behind your back and psychologically put you in some force field of shame which you couldn't penetrate no matter how much of a good person you were.
And above it all was an ugly ambiance created by rumors and lies believed by many and pushed by religious right groups. Gays recruit children, gays have lots of sex, gays have health issues because they love anal sex so much. Gays stuff gerbils up their rectums. It sounds a bit funny now (particularly that last lie) but when you are a gay man in an environment where you have to keep silent for fear of violence and rejection, hearing that stuff damages your soul. Your world stops and you play mental games with yourself in order to stop thinking about what you need to do or how will your future be. The majority of my heterosexuals college mates had dreams about getting married, having successful careers, raising families and such. The only dream I had as a gay man back then was what the hell do I do to get my life on track and how do I not wind up a bitter, lonely old gay man getting my ass kicked by a hustler in a seedy hotel room.
It was inconceivable for me to plan where and how I would end up. Realizing that I'm gay took all control out of my life. It lasted that way until a number of years later due to two reasons. One - I got older and with age came a fuck you world attitude. Secondly with that attitude came anger at all of the time I wasted in fear. And that anger pinpointed to all of the mess I heard from sources like Pat Robertson and The 700 Club and various other religious right groups and individuals.
So, to speed up the story to the present, that was the main reason why I've been here for 15 years writing and pulling out the receipts. When the media implies that this so-called culture war about LGBTQ rights is a religious issue, don't believe their false narrative. It's a lie. The war over LGBTQ rights is about a deliberate slander, a mass stigmatization of an innocent group of Americans through junk science, cherry-picked science and out-and-out lies spewed by a group of religious hypocrites using terms like "religious liberty," "pro-family," and "Judeo-Christian" to hide their basic homophobia.