Wednesday, March 14, 2012

How to write about gay men

1. Set the right mood early on. In either the title or the opening paragraph, mention either "shades of gay" or some reference to night. The latter portrays gay men as like vampires, except not sparkly or appealing to teenage girls. You should make it clear early that gay men are mysteriously unique, uniquely mysterious, and not in any respect like people in general. To that end ....

2. Do not portray gay men looking or behaving normally. The gay men in your work should not do mundane things like going with their partners to an outlet mall in a suburb named after a prince to buy pleated chinos to fit their well upholstered midriffs. Definitely, do not state their occupation unless they are sex workers. Otherwise, people will start to think that you either don't know the Capital-T Truth about gay men or are sugarcoating it to advance the sodomite agenda of special privileges. As every right-thinking person knows, gay men do only mysterious gay male things, and they do them only in leather bars, bathhouses, or an inaccurately portrayed urban park. While not going into enough detail to challenge the "family-friendly" status of your publication, provide enough lurid details so that your readers can express indignation, fap to those details, or do some combination of the two. Speaking of which ....

3. Cover Pride Weekend correctly. When covering Pride Weekend, focus on the most flamboyant drag queens and the leather daddies. Ignore all of the gay men staffing the booths for professional or service organizations or the many booths and parade floats for religious organizations. Otherwise, people might start to think that gay men are almost like actual people, or even that they have lives outside of backroom bareback orgies, in which case you will have failed. For that matter, you need not go at all; since it is an indisputable fact that all pride parades are exactly like the Folsom Street Fair, there is not much point in actually going to the Lansing pride parade and seeing for yourself.

4. Paint with as broad a brush as possible. Don't treat gay men as individuals, and forget whatever you've been told about the dangers of outlying data points. Any gay man, or at least any gay man who does something of which you don't approve, instantly becomes all gay men, no matter how extreme his behavior may be in any objective sense. For example, if you can find a self-loathing meth head who has bareback sex with six strangers every day (ten on Saturdays, Sundays, and federal holidays), make him your star witness, and subtly imply that he represents all gay men. As a less extreme example, we read here:

Gay men are attracted to, essentially, themselves. No straight man wants to look like a woman (and certainly not the reverse) but gay men find what they are physically attracted to and often remake their bodies in the image of their ideal mate. Since society tells us to want muscle-bound athletes, that's what gays want, and that's what they make themselves look like in the pursuit of their ideal.
Don't worry about all of the counter-examples, such as gay men who like bears, twinks, or girly-boys in panties. In fact, counter-examples to whatever point you're trying to make just don't exist. Alternatively, you can hand-wave away counter-examples. For instance, in Paula Martinac's writing, gay men are "queer" or "LGBT" when they don't fit into her paradigm but, of course, are gay men the rest of the time.

5. It's all about special rights. Everything that any gay man could possibly want is a special right. Life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness? Special rights. Equal protection of the laws? A special right. The same freedoms that you zealously protect for yourself? Double-super-extra-special rights.

6. Be sure to bring up HIV. You usually don't have to use actual statistics about rates of HIV infection among either gay men or heterosexuals; your readers will get the point. If you feel that you must use statistics, just make them up; it's not as though anyone were about to fact-check you. Whatever you do, don't mention HIV and lesbians; in fact, Free Republic has wisely made it a bannable offense to mention HIV and lesbians in the same sentence.

7. For (a cherry-picked version of) the Bible tells you so. Be sure to bring up the Bible verses on homosexuality — just the ones on homosexuality, and definitely not the ones on such subjects as polygamy, rape, and slavery. Omit the minor detail that America is not a Jewish or Christian version of Iran, but is instead a secular republic with non-establishment of religion written into its Constitution.

8. You are the one to tell gay men's stories for them. IPU forbid they should get to do so themselves, especially since your readers will not understand (or, quite honestly, care) what (if anything) goes on in gay men's minds. If you absolutely have to let them speak for themselves, cherry-pick the most extreme example you can find (see #4 above).

9. Try not to express too much sympathy for your subject matter. Not appearing too pro-gay should be a much higher priority than responsible journalism. State that you disagree with all or part of the homosexual agenda. You need not bother explaining what the homosexual agenda is or what is wrong with it. For extra credit, point out what an ideologically pure liberal you are on every other subject. If you are a gay man, be sure to engage in stereotypical gay male self-flagellation. If you are a lesbian, assert that lesbians never exhibit the same bad behavior as gay men; when a gay man provides evidence to disprove your assertion, whine about how much gay men hate lesbians.

If, for some reason, you have to say something positive about gay men, pick some endearing but inconsequential pet homosexual, such as the queen who makes witty but superficial chatter with the ladies at the salon. You can thus show that gay men are just as amusing as a kitten chasing its own tail — and just as human and worthy of dignity and equal rights.

10. Rely on the fallacy of false balance. Portray every issue as being between two evenly balanced sides, no matter how far that portrayal is from the truth. Let an anti-gay spokesperson, no matter how much of a crackpot that person is, have the last word, and do not challenge anything that person says. Frame the argument such that the pro-gay side always has the burden of proof, preferably by an impossibly high standard.

Special note for Washington Blade columnists: In your case, writing about gay men is the easiest thing in the world. Just copy and paste from Conservapedia or some such source, and then use control-F to change "male homosexuals" to "gay men."

See also:

Shamelessly ripped off from How to write about Japan

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