Homophobic language

  • ytOwen

    Posts: 298

    Jul 29, 2011 8:31 AM GMT
    Guys!
    I'm wondering what do you do when you hear the word GAY
    used pejoratively?


    Do you let it slide?
    Do you challenge it?
    Do you use wit to disarm?

    My context: I'm living in a small, relatively liberal town, in northern Canada. Occasionally, when I'm out in a bar, I come across straight guys who use this kind of language. It's not directed towards me. But it is loud enough to over hear. I'm sensitive to this, and it really bothers me. I'm perfectly confident walking up to a group of guys and calling them on their language publicly, drawing the attention of management, etc ... ... ... and have done so in the past.

    Am I out of line? How do you handle this kind of situation?
    I'm looking for ideas and an approach.
    Owen!

    “Just as it took several years for racial equality laws to feed into real culture change where racist language became unacceptable – so now we need to achieve the same with homophobic language ... ... ... This is too often seen as harmless banter instead of the offensive insult that it really represents ... ... ... To ignore this problem is to collude in it. The blind eye to casual name-calling, looking the other way because it is the easy option, is simply intolerable.”
    Kevin Brennan
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Jul 29, 2011 8:39 AM GMT
    ytOwen saidGuys!
    I'm wondering what do you do when you hear the word GAY
    used pejoratively?


    Do you let it slide?
    Do you challenge it?
    Do you use wit to disarm?


    The straight people I know who say "that's so gay" aren't even homophobic, stop assuming people who use it are. It's vernacular, and as an out gay man with skin thicker than tissue paper, it's harmless. Liberals need to not make mountains out of imaginary molehills.

    btw: P.C. is for fags.

    FLAME WAR ON
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Jul 29, 2011 9:40 AM GMT
    FrostedFlakes saidThe straight people I know who say "that's so gay" aren't even homophobic, stop assuming people who use it are. It's vernacular, and as an out gay man with skin thicker than tissue paper, it's harmless. Liberals need to not make mountains out of imaginary molehills.

    btw: P.C. is for fags.

    FLAME WAR ON
    Agreed.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Jul 29, 2011 9:45 AM GMT
    ytOwen said...
    My context: I'm living in a small, relatively liberal town, in northern Canada.
    People actually live there? icon_eek.gif
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Jul 29, 2011 12:19 PM GMT
    I think that this is a real issue. But i agree that "gay" is complicated. I think the word that should be attacked first is "fag". When most straight people use the word "gay", they don't mean homosexual. But " fag" is a prejorative, demeaning word for homosexual. Pick your battles and don't be angry. They are probably not bad people, they just are unaware.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Jul 29, 2011 12:31 PM GMT
    Some people use it to mean "lame" or "pitiful" and that irks me. They also use it for "effeminate" which is just as idiotic.


    FrostedFlakes said

    btw: P.C. is for fags.

    FLAME WAR ON


    So if I can't say "politically incorrect" can I just call them assholes?
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Jul 29, 2011 12:35 PM GMT
    It depends. Gay doesn't always bother me but I cannot keep silent if someone uses fag.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Jul 29, 2011 12:42 PM GMT
    Let it go. Words mean different things in different contexts.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Jul 29, 2011 12:47 PM GMT
    JackNWNJ saidLet it go. Words mean different things in different contexts.



    Like when you used the term rag-head?
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Jul 29, 2011 12:53 PM GMT
    Wow, you live in White horse! That is amazing..
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Jul 29, 2011 12:53 PM GMT
    meninlove said
    JackNWNJ saidLet it go. Words mean different things in different contexts.



    Like when you used the term rag-head?


    No, like the time when I said "rice burner."
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Jul 29, 2011 1:24 PM GMT
    theantijock said[blah blah my cousin is dead to me]
    Not everyone who uses "gay" is a stupid bitch like your cousin.
    My ex-roomie said "that's gay" sometimes. He's straight and we talked about sex occasionally. He clearly did not feel that there was any difference in equality between us.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Jul 29, 2011 2:47 PM GMT
    Anduru said
    theantijock said[blah blah my cousin is dead to me]
    Not everyone who uses "gay" is a stupid bitch like your cousin.
    My ex-roomie said "that's gay" sometimes. He's straight and we talked about sex occasionally. He clearly did not feel that there was any difference in equality between us.



    ^^^ this


    I do draw the line at "fag". That is entirely different.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Jul 29, 2011 2:50 PM GMT
    I just learnt not to be offended. I have a million things to worry about, this is not one of em. They wanna call you gay and a fag or etc, let them. I call them hicks and cakers.
  • austex85

    Posts: 572

    Jul 29, 2011 3:08 PM GMT
    i find that many (most?) gays are hypocrites when it comes to using these slurs. they are up in arms whenever anyone makes a comment that could be even remotely homophobic, but then will turn around and use the nastiest racial/ethnic slurs.
  • umphreak

    Posts: 43

    Jul 29, 2011 5:25 PM GMT
    I'd never butt into another conversation to criticize someone's use of offensive language unless they were loud and repeating the same language over and over again.

    If someone I'm taking to says anything derogatory, I'll typically say "not that there is anything wrong with that, RIGHT?". That or i'll say "hey now" or "wow, you really just said that?!". How they react determines whether or not I get angry. They usually get the point that their choice of words wasn't well taken.

    I'm never out looking to get pissed over some innocent words, but if there is some venom used while they spoke, I'm going to say something for sure. We need to stand up for ourselves, but not become oversensitive babies about it. Thankfully I don't hear as many people say stuff like that anymore.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Jul 29, 2011 5:26 PM GMT
    People can say whatever the hell they want to say. Taking offense is a choice.
  • ytOwen

    Posts: 298

    Jul 30, 2011 11:11 PM GMT
    paulflexes said
    ytOwen said...
    My context: I'm living in a small, relatively liberal town, in northern Canada.
    People actually live there? icon_eek.gif


    People live outside?
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Jul 30, 2011 11:17 PM GMT
    I work in the service lane at a Toyota dealership. All the guys of course act macho and trash talk constantly. They use gay as an insult for just about anything and everyone. When I first started working there I let it slide because there were more important things for me to focus on. After everyone found out I was gay I made it clear I didn't approve. Everyone likes me so everyone respected my wishes. Occasionally they will still use it to insult someone in front of me but apologize immediately. I know all the guys respect me and they know I respect them so they have no issue keeping the "gay" bashing under raps when I'm around.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Jul 30, 2011 11:22 PM GMT
    I'm torn. It is an important issue to me but with the amount of times I hear people say "that's gay" I'd come off as a turbo douche if I had to champion homosexuality every time they said it. I should suck it up and do it I know, but I do need some friends ;)

    I rarely hear people use it in an overtly negative manner. Really, only one person has done it to me and I just blow kisses back at him (at patient).

    For the other uses, I think its still very harmful and mostly because we do for the most part let it slide. But what we are doing in reality is accepting the judgment of society that to be gay is wrong. Allowing this to perpetuate around our society is a problem. Fighting this kind of discrimination is exceptionally hard and I can't think of very many minorities who have been able to convince others that this kind of passive discrimination is harmful.

    It's like when I hear my white friends roll their eyes when a black person tries to explain how it feels when people move away from them, or look over their shoulders and start walking faster. It's racism plain and simple but for many they are unable to see it.
  • ytOwen

    Posts: 298

    Jul 30, 2011 11:23 PM GMT
    But back on task!

    Alpha_Muscle saidI think that this is a real issue. But i agree that "gay" is complicated. I think the word that should be attacked first is "fag". When most straight people use the word "gay", they don't mean homosexual. But " fag" is a prejorative, demeaning word for homosexual. Pick your battles and don't be angry. They are probably not bad people, they just are unaware.


    I find fag, and faggot are definitely stronger words than gay.
    And gay's ambiguous meaning doesn't help.
    Does anyone find these as strong as the N word?
    How about the C word?
    Or other racial / sexist slurs?
  • jpk090

    Posts: 71

    Jul 30, 2011 11:30 PM GMT
    I don't even find fag that offensive. Faggot does bother me a little. Not sure why I make a distinction between fag and faggot, but I do.

    Either way, I don't really give that much of a shit
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Jul 30, 2011 11:32 PM GMT
    Alpha_Muscle saidI think that this is a real issue. But i agree that "gay" is complicated. I think the word that should be attacked first is "fag". When most straight people use the word "gay", they don't mean homosexual. But " fag" is a prejorative, demeaning word for homosexual. Pick your battles and don't be angry. They are probably not bad people, they just are unaware.


    WOW I just had a similar experience when I went to a day trip to chicago with a group of people. A couple of young high school boys were like being very immature the ENTIRE day. I mean even farting at dinnericon_evil.gif But a couple of times they were calling things gay and like playing around and stuff. Due to their level of immaturity I did not respond, I am not sure that was right or not but IDK, what would you guys have done?
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Jul 30, 2011 11:37 PM GMT
    The minute I hear ANYTHING homophobic, it's a natural reaction for me to get in the moron's face and confront them. Doesn't matter if they are bigger,smaller, older or younger.
    Have gotten into plenty of both physical and verbal fights. Got my ass kicked once. But I promise you, win or lose, that ignorant moron will think twice before saying it again.
    It is so important to us all to confront this as soon as it happens!
    Tristan
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Jul 30, 2011 11:51 PM GMT
    Best response: over-the-top, asthmatic laugh followed by dead-pan silence and eye roll. How else to 14-year-olds learn?