Question: the term "straight acting"

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jul 31, 2014 1:20 AM GMT
    Tonight, I had a member tell me that the term "straight acting" was "highly offensive." I am interested in getting opinions on this. I tried to open a discourse on the topic, but this member responded with invective. I realize now how the term sounds, and there are better ways to indicate this preference. Opinions?
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    Jul 31, 2014 1:33 AM GMT
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  • AMoonHawk

    Posts: 11406

    Jul 31, 2014 2:41 AM GMT
    Straight Acting
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  • buddycat

    Posts: 1874

    Jul 31, 2014 2:44 AM GMT
    Straight acting = big Mary looking for butch man.
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    Jul 31, 2014 3:02 AM GMT
    I don't find it offensive but why not just say masculine.
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    Jul 31, 2014 3:05 AM GMT
    My dating profiles specify looking for "masculine bottoms". "Straight acting" doesn't really help gays break free from stereotypes.
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    Jul 31, 2014 3:49 AM GMT
  • madsexy

    Posts: 4843

    Jul 31, 2014 4:14 PM GMT
    I think it's only offensive to gay men who are easily offended by anything at all. It's an established term that means a certain thing and easily relates to a guy's preference. Giving in to the whiners for whom political correctness is a mantra is exhausting.

    Having said that I think I see that speeding car coming . . . with one of those PC-obsessors driving it! icon_lol.gif
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    Jul 31, 2014 4:18 PM GMT
    By DEFINITION, a gay man cannot be straight-acting, as he doesn't have heterosexual sex. Thefore, a "straight-acting" homosexual man is an oxymoron; the phrase itself a flaw in logic.

    "Straight-acting" simply means "I have sex with the opposite sex," but people associate a certain look with sexual orientation. What offends people is that this phrase is basically elevating and continuing heteronormativity in society, which affects all sexual minorities (a.k.a US).

    Gay men are obsessed with masculinity so much and it makes me wonder if they feel like they have to somehow "compensate" for being gay. Either this, or more like compensate for others who are feminine, which is basically policing another person's gender presentation (how entitled).
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    Jul 31, 2014 4:47 PM GMT
    I get what people mean when they say it, but it reinforces the stereotype that to gay means to be fem, which those same guys defy when they describe themselves as "masc. bros" or whatever, thus is problematic.

    Here is a description of two of my friends:

    Friend #1 is a stay-at-home caretaker for his 8-year-old son. Prior to that, he worked in a secretarial-type job and then in IT. His SO is a pharmacist and the breadwinner. He has a liberal arts degree and votes progressive. He has extensive collection of costumes and memorabilia from a popular TV show. He almost single-handedly planned every detail of his own wedding and takes most of the responsibility for the way the family home is decorated. He loves movies and Broadway and his musical taste is mostly top 40. His car is a small Japanese convertible.

    Friend #2 has a high-school diploma and worked at Home Depot for a number of years before getting a job with and then moving up the ranks at one of their major suppliers. He is attracted to thin, soft types who want to be taken care of, as he has an alpha personality. He doesn't really follow politics but is generally conservative. His favorite pastime is building and racing stock cars. His street vehicle is a domestically-built SUV, which he maintains himself. His musical taste is country and heavy metal.

    One of these guys is gay; the other is straight. Any guess which is which?
  • BIG_N_TALL

    Posts: 2190

    Jul 31, 2014 4:49 PM GMT
    Personally, I don't get upset or bent out of shape over it. The way I see it is that "straight acting" is someone's way of conveying the concept, in their mind, of conventional masculinity. That's it.

    The problem is when people want to go on a crusade over the association of masculinity with only "straight" men. At the end of the day, I know what you mean by "straight acting," and I have better things to do with my time than to engage in soap opera drama.
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    Jul 31, 2014 4:54 PM GMT
    Wow, I was waiting for this topic to be discussed on RJ! I can't believe it's never been brought up before....brought up before....brought up before...BROUGHT UP BEFORE. icon_eek.gif
  • Destinharbor

    Posts: 4434

    Jul 31, 2014 5:04 PM GMT
    It is an argument that will not end. I have no problem with it and think those who do are over-reacting. "My dog is acting like she doesn't feel well." Does this suggest she's faking it? Of course not. But if someone is offended, I'll give it up. But you're right. There really isn't a great way to convey the meaning. "Masculine" is equally divisive. I think a lot of the argument relates to insecurities. And everyone has those in one way or another.
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    Jul 31, 2014 5:05 PM GMT
    Whenever I hear or see this term *Straight acting*. It's usually in a dating ad profile. It goes like this....

    **I'm a straight acting bro seeking other straight acting (frat) type bro, please be straight acting too bro** lol.

    Maybe some guys get offended by this because the guy seems to be a douche or whatever? I think it's funny to state that you're straight-acting for everyone to know, I don't have a problem with guys who write this. But something tell me these straight acting guys could act like the biggest bottoms in the bedroom. icon_lol.gificon_lol.gificon_redface.gif
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    Jul 31, 2014 5:06 PM GMT
    ShiftyJK08 said
    ...One of these guys is gay; the other is straight. Any guess which is which?


    Da

    -HomeDepot; sort-of a dead give away.
    give us a hard one
  • Destinharbor

    Posts: 4434

    Jul 31, 2014 5:08 PM GMT
    LAXWill10 saidWhenever I hear or see this term *Straight acting*. It's usually in a dating ad profile. It goes like this....

    **I'm a straight acting bro seeking other straight acting (frat) type bro, please be straight acting too bro** lol.

    Maybe some guys get offended by this because the guy seems to be a douche or whatever? I think it's funny to state that you're straight-acting for everyone to know, I don't have a problem with guys who write this. But something tell me these straight acting guys could act like the biggest bottoms in the bedroom. icon_lol.gificon_lol.gificon_redface.gif

    I don't think because a guy prefers to bottom that is a non-masculine thing. Though is sure isn't "straight acting." lol
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jul 31, 2014 5:09 PM GMT
    Once again just sharing my own thoughts and perspective on this. The term "Straight Acting" has two meanings, depending on context:
    a) "Straight Acting" may refer to acting straight in order to hide one's homosexuality.
    b) "Straight Acting" may refer to possessing more masculine traits that are contrary to the stereotype of the effeminate homosexual.

    I think the major issue is misinterpretation: depending on the context you use it in, both of them make sense, however I personally avoid saying "straight acting" in the context of definition "b". The reason I would avoid using it, is because it relies on the stereotype that the average gay man is effeminate. You know the stereotype: that skinny-jean, pink-shirt wearing, hair-product using, clean shaven, high-voiced lean guy who bends his wrist at a ninety-degree angle while saying, "girlfriend!"

    My own preference is to use the term, "masculine" when referring to a gay person who is not effeminate, that way I deal with the stereotype while not reinforcing its existence. The definition I use for "masculine" is: "...having qualities or appearance traditionally associated with men, especially strength and aggressiveness." It says nothing about sexuality--it only deals with physical or personality traits. To summarize, my thoughts:
    1) "Straight Acting" is a term used to identify one's self as concealing their homosexual nature.
    2) "Masculine" is a term used to identify one's self as not possessing effeminate qualities.

    Context is important, and everyone has their own definition when it comes to contextually-specific words and phrases like this. When I read someone's profile, and they say they're "Straight Acting," I do not use my definition of "Straight Acting". Instead, I read their profile, and try to deduce what they mean by "Straight Acting", and then I use their definition.

    It's a case-by-case issue, for me. But if we could establish a standard meaning for the term, it might be easier, as there'd be less confusion on the whole issue. Hopefully.

  • widestance

    Posts: 40

    Jul 31, 2014 5:13 PM GMT
    Would looking for a "Christian-acting Jew" or a "White-acting African American" be ok?
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    Jul 31, 2014 5:27 PM GMT
    Destinharbor said
    LAXWill10 saidWhenever I hear or see this term *Straight acting*. It's usually in a dating ad profile. It goes like this....

    **I'm a straight acting bro seeking other straight acting (frat) type bro, please be straight acting too bro** lol.

    Maybe some guys get offended by this because the guy seems to be a douche or whatever? I think it's funny to state that you're straight-acting for everyone to know, I don't have a problem with guys who write this. But something tell me these straight acting guys could act like the biggest bottoms in the bedroom. icon_lol.gificon_lol.gificon_redface.gif

    I don't think because a guy prefers to bottom that is a non-masculine thing. Though is sure isn't "straight acting." lol


    LOL True that, I was thinking about a scene from Sean Cody where the bottom *straight frat bro screams in ecstasy like a chick. icon_lol.gificon_redface.gif
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    Jul 31, 2014 5:40 PM GMT
    I personally don't have a problem with the term, nor do I think everyone using it is hating on effeminate gays. The reality is that we all have preferences in attraction, and no amount of using PC language is going to change that.

    That said, don't let your friend change who you are - if someone is shaming you for "being too fem", that's way out of line. Rock who you are, and be proud of it. Same with guys who are stereotypically "masc". You don't have to watch Ru Paul's Drag Race, modify your voice/add a lisp, or rip off vocabulary from drag queens (who in turn ripped it off from African-Americans) before you're officially an 'acceptable' gay man. Nothing wrong with those things, but you don't have to do them. No matter where you are on the "fem-masc" spectrum, you are a person of value and there is someone else out there for you. Your friend can't make someone else change into the form of gay that he likes, though. That's as stupid as the heteros who all tried to tell us to change from being gay to straight. We don't tolerate them telling us to change, so your friend can't be hypocritical and get pissed off at other gays who don't like the same things he does.

    I don't say "straight acting", but essentially it is what I'm attracted to and I won't apologize for it. I have gay friends of all sorts, so no one can tell me that I'm hating on anyone - I just may not want to date them. That would be policing my attractions like the heteros have tried to do to all of us with homosexuality in general, and it's unacceptable.
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    Jul 31, 2014 5:42 PM GMT
    LAXWill10 said
    Destinharbor said
    LAXWill10 saidWhenever I hear or see this term *Straight acting*. It's usually in a dating ad profile. It goes like this....

    **I'm a straight acting bro seeking other straight acting (frat) type bro, please be straight acting too bro** lol.

    Maybe some guys get offended by this because the guy seems to be a douche or whatever? I think it's funny to state that you're straight-acting for everyone to know, I don't have a problem with guys who write this. But something tell me these straight acting guys could act like the biggest bottoms in the bedroom. icon_lol.gificon_lol.gificon_redface.gif

    I don't think because a guy prefers to bottom that is a non-masculine thing. Though is sure isn't "straight acting." lol


    LOL True that, I was thinking about a scene from Sean Cody where the bottom *straight frat bro screams in ecstasy like a chick. icon_lol.gificon_redface.gif

    Neil Patrick Harris on How I Met Your Mother is a perfect example of straight acting, because he literally is. Doesn't change the fact that he's gay, but he sure is convincing.
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    Jul 31, 2014 5:52 PM GMT
    I don't think that as a society, we have achieved the status to make better language for the concept. We have masculine, but even that brings up gender norms for males and females. This is because the remnants of past thought regarding stereotypes of being gay still exist. Doesn't mean we can do something proactive about it.

    But yeah, I feel like most guys who use it don't need to. I can tell you're masculine by your photo of you trying to flex, by you wearing backwards baseball caps and facial hair. No need to overstate the obvious just to reinforce societal idea.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jul 31, 2014 5:54 PM GMT
    The US (and lots of other countries) are obsessed with masculinity. This obsession in the gay community is the ultimate fetishization of sexism, which is a big thing in our culture. Think about it.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jul 31, 2014 5:55 PM GMT
    Masculinity is all relative. One may think you're masculine in terms of mannerisms when compared to some other gay men. But there are many straight men who would find your attraction to men extremely feminine.

    Personally, I'd say don't put too much thought into labels, realize that the concept of being gay has just recently become mainstream in western society, and that the language will need to catch up. Also, tell that ass who was offended by it to lighten up...
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    Jul 31, 2014 6:24 PM GMT
    Kodiak saidOnce again just sharing my own thoughts and perspective on this. The term "Straight Acting" has two meanings, depending on context:
    a) "Straight Acting" may refer to acting straight in order to hide one's homosexuality.
    b) "Straight Acting" may refer to possessing more masculine traits that are contrary to the stereotype of the effeminate homosexual.

    I think the major issue is misinterpretation: depending on the context you use it in, both of them make sense, however I personally avoid saying "straight acting" in the context of definition "b". The reason I would avoid using it, is because it relies on the stereotype that the average gay man is effeminate. You know the stereotype: that skinny-jean, pink-shirt wearing, hair-product using, clean shaven, high-voiced lean guy who bends his wrist at a ninety-degree angle while saying, "girlfriend!"

    My own preference is to use the term, "masculine" when referring to a gay person who is not effeminate, that way I deal with the stereotype while not reinforcing its existence. The definition I use for "masculine" is: "...having qualities or appearance traditionally associated with men, especially strength and aggressiveness." It says nothing about sexuality--it only deals with physical or personality traits. To summarize, my thoughts:
    1) "Straight Acting" is a term used to identify one's self as concealing their homosexual nature.
    2) "Masculine" is a term used to identify one's self as not possessing effeminate qualities.

    Context is important, and everyone has their own definition when it comes to contextually-specific words and phrases like this. When I read someone's profile, and they say they're "Straight Acting," I do not use my definition of "Straight Acting". Instead, I read their profile, and try to deduce what they mean by "Straight Acting", and then I use their definition.

    It's a case-by-case issue, for me. But if we could establish a standard meaning for the term, it might be easier, as there'd be less confusion on the whole issue. Hopefully.



    I personally don't like the term straight acting for the above reason 1. To me it con notates that someone is fake, that they are hiding, that they are acting like something they are not. I prefer using the term masculine rather than "straight acting" for that point exactly: I am NOT acting!