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Thursday, March 13, 2014

I Ain't You, Fool

Thank you to all for your comments. They help keep me writing. 

Dear Mr. Little Kiwi,

Thank you for taking the time to stop by my very serious internet blog to pseudo-anonymously spout uninformed platitudes, holier-than-thou false assumptions, and dime-store psychoanalyses. 

I've responded to the majority of your erratic and largely incoherent "points" individually, but my main response is: this blog will remain anonymous even after I am completely out; the two issues are unrelated.
"This blogger is, at 26, where I was when I was 16."
There may be some patterns and similarities among non heteros and the way that we approach our sexual orientation, but that does not mean that your thoughts, feelings and experiences necessarily apply to anyone else, especially people you don't know. It's incredibly misguided and arrogant to imply that every non heterosexual is on the same "track" with some being "further ahead" than others.

"For all your self-professed masculinity and strength you still blog *anonymously*."
This almost seems too obvious to say, but the concepts of anonymity, masculinity, and strength have no causal relationship. One could be any combination of those three characteristics or their antonyms. And let me just take a moment to congratulate you on the impressive accomplishment of having your identity "out there," Mr. Kiwi. How did you come by such an interesting name, by the way?
"Anonymity means people can make shit up and not be held accountable"
Because identified people never make shit up and are always held accountable. Good point. This is a personal blog about my life, experiences and opinions, so I'm unclear as to what I would need to be "held accountable" for. My stories? I give very few fucks about whether you or anyone thinks what I write is true. That said, the recounts are 99% true. Names and minor details have been changed to preserve that cursed anonymity.
...negates any claims you make about being a strong, confident and empowered gay man.
The first of many signs that you are one of those insufferable people who comment without reading. I've never once used the word empowered or referred to myself as "a gay man." You're not even trying, Mr. Kiwi. 
"..provide the link to my own blog - which actually features me, my friends, and my family on it. Showing who we are, as gay men, and as non-gay people who stand up to visibly and vocally support the LGBT Communities. "
Yeah, any blog with pictures of the author's face is inherently more genuine, truer, and just plain betterer. Science. Totally. That's great that you feel you are supporting the LGBT community. The primary purpose of my blog is to articulate personal thoughts and opinions that, secondarily, I hope are beneficial to some of the less-represented members of the non-hetero world. (Protip: No one is forcing you to read my blog. For example, because your blog looked boring and hackneyed, I didn't read anything that you wrote. Notice I also didn't comment pretending that I had. Based on your comments here, I can only assume your blog is a guide on how not to write an English sentence.)
"Why you, as a 26 year old, still worry about people knowing that you're gay? As long as you remain invisible and anonymous you cannot complain about "how people don't realize that people like you are gay...refuses to do what millions of other LGBT people do every day: live openly, and put a face to who we are. THAT is how things change."
This is perhaps your only point that makes any sense. However, I've addressed this point a number of times, including hereI completely agree that the most effective way to get people to realize people like me exist is for me and others like me to exist more openly in my every day life. I have admittedly not wanted to completely step up to the plate and make it my second job. It just sounds tiring. But I take every call for me to come out more as positive encouragement and I am in the process, just I'm going about it fairly slowly--but surely. 

To address a few broader issues:

Reasons to be Anonymous

There are plenty of actual writers who wrote under different names, so I'm far from being an anomly in the community of people who write. Also, the vast majority of writers do not write about their personal lives--they write about other people or in the third person. The main reason this blog is anonymous is simply that I don't want anyone I meet to have immediate access to some of my personal shit, especially since my thoughts on much of what I write about on here are still evolving. Lastly, having a digital public record of your controversial thoughts could be limiting in a number of ways, and plenty of influence can be exerted anonymously.

I've never understood why people think that a name is an important feature of a person. If a friend changed their name do they also change as a person? No. And what does knowing what a writer looks like have to do with confirming their words? Do you look up a picture of an author before reading their book? If I posted a picture of my face what would that "prove"? 

That said, there are a number of readers who could attest, if they wanted, to what I am like or how I look or whatever. 

Unnecessarily Making Issues Seem Binary



There's definitely an overaching issue here with the inability to see concepts as multidimentional. It's as if simulatenously holding three non-diametrically opposed ideas in your mind would cause your head to explode. Resist the urge to make every issue binary, i.e. only two options. The only choices are not love and fear, proud or ashamed and just because a person chooses not to dedicate the majority of their time and life-energy to one trait of their being does not mean they are ashamed, scared or weak or anything else. 

Criticism Doesn't Always Have ___-ist Roots
I'm against any vitriol directed at a feature of a person or group that is inborn or uncontrollable. It makes no sense to criticize or chastise someone for their sex, ethnicity, nationality, sexual orientation, etc any more than it would make sense to criticize someone for their eye color or any other by-chance trait. However, I consider pretty much everything else to be fair game. If a person chose to do something, then I see nothing wrong with questioning why they did so. I am happy to have the same standard applied to myself and my behaviors. 

In this way, a woman saying something negative about a man's behavior is not inherently sexist, just as a person saying something negative about a homosexual is not by default homophobic or anti-gay. To make these kind of statements is cheap and unreasonable. It's the generalizations to groups at large that can become whatever-ist. 

Prerogatives

Let me reaffirm my belief that everyone has the right to live their life however they want and as whoever they want. It's advisable to take into consideration who you feel you "naturally" are and what you want to do with your life. It is the definition of selfish to live exactly as you want at every moment of your life with no regard for others, but that is your right. 

It is also our prerogative to place whatever importance we want on our inborn traits, such as race and sex and sexual orientation. We don't have to build our identity around any of them if we don't want to. 


-- Closing remarks --

I think it's fair to say that for those bros who had a harder time being "in the closet," it is easier to come out, and for those of us who don't find it comparatively as difficult to be in, it's accordingly harder to make the jump out. If everyone can already guess that you are gay before you open your mouth, or as soon as you open your mouth, then you don't really have to "come out" in the same way. On the other hand, if no one would ever guess you are not hetero, then all of the onus is on you and it's a never-ending process. It's an odd disadvantage of not having stereotypical mannerisms. Maybe this is partly why some gay dudes dress in a certain way? So it's just known, or highly suggested without having to say anything? Not clear. 

There's pressure from all angles to act and be a certain way, but I've got my own steez, y'all, and I'm sticking to it.




8 comments:

  1. Looks like you got a zero for the day.

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  2. Obviously not everything in a guy's life needs to be viewed thru a gay lens, but there are some people who do that.

    When you are ready to come out, I for one would welcome that day. We need more people to show that being gay is not the negatives that have been portrayed in the past. You become an ambassador of sorts to your family and friends, and can positively influence others.

    While there still are tensions in our group (femmes vs. masc., for example), I would hope that you can see and appreciate being part of the larger LGBT community.

    But the decision to come out is yours. As for blogging anonymously, I don't see a problem with you wanting to maintain some privacy.

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  3. The first gif is fucking perfect

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  4. I read through several of littlekiwi's recent blog posts. They were all critical of closeted men and their internalized homophobia. His comments here were a variation of that same theme. For that reason, you might not want to take his words too personally.

    On the other hand...

    This is obviously a topic he feels very passionately about. Why?

    The answer, I think, is that he lived that life.

    At one point he says something about "dying a little more each day you spend in the closet." That, to me, sounds like he's speaking from personal experience. If so, then he's actually trying to be kind to you No Hetero, albeit in a grating and obnoxious way. I think what he's trying to say is, "being in the closet is a manifestation of self-hatred. Or at least, internalized homophobia. That kind of hate will eat you up. That's what it did to me. So, for the sake of your own happiness, recognize your behavior and choices for what they are, and show your love for yourself, and your sincere belief that there's nothing wrong with you, by being open and authentic at all times."

    It's too bad that he ruined his message by personally attacking you. It's as if he traded his self-hatred for a hatred of closeted men. I wouldn't consider that a trade up.

    Still, he raises a good question: what's the difference between being in the closet and being ashamed of yourself?

    You're a very proud and outspoken guy, No Hetero. No one would guess that shame and self-hate are a big part of your internal life. But maybe, deep down, they are?

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    Replies
    1. umm hi yeah, there is a huge difference between feeling ashamed and being in the closet - that is such a bullshit loaded/semi-rhetorical question, almost like "Does this make me look fat?" or "Can YOU live with yourself everyday not being out to champion gays to the unsuspecting masses who don't yet have an understanding of all walks of homo life???"

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    2. It's not a rhetorical question; there's not one universal answer. The answer varies by person. For you, the difference might be huge, but for others, like littlekiwi, they might be two sides of the same coin.

      What probably annoys you is that it is a loaded question. Its purpose is to encourage to you to think about your own issues with shame.

      I like to understand my motives, so that's what makes it a good question for me. If I was to label it as bullshit, that would be my way of avoiding the whole issue. I'd rather be real. I want to know my issues and make thoughtful decisions about how to deal with them.

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  5. One day, Mr. Hetero. One day.

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  6. Hey, so have you come out yet?
    http://littlekiwilovesbauhaus.blogspot.ca/2015/07/matt-baume-one-of-worlds-brightest.html

    ReplyDelete