"That's gay"

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    Mar 02, 2009 3:05 AM GMT
    I have a very good (100% straight) friend/ co-worker who uses the phrase "that's gay" pretty consistently. I'm out, so he obviously knows i'm gay and he's been one of my closest friends over the past few years. I don't really care if he refers to something as bing "gay," but one of my gay friends was highly offended. I'm wondering id anyone here would be offended under the circumstances: good friend, straight, not a homophobe, but insist on using the word "gay" to describe people, places or things?
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    Mar 02, 2009 3:24 AM GMT
    Since you know your friend isnt saying it in a homophobic way, but just using it as slang for "lame," I probably wouldnt be offended. But I probably would still object because it perpetuates the stereotype that "gay" isnt as good as the others.

    We had a discussion about this on another thread recently, I think one of the suggestions was to start saying "that's so hetro" meaning lame and see the response you get from your friend. I doubt your friend will be offended. He will probably laugh. But he might also see how it sounds.
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    Mar 02, 2009 4:25 AM GMT
    thats so gay! has meaning if we give it as much. I have used it to describe something that is stupid, lame, etc.... people focus way too much on semantics, let us not forget gay used to mean happy, cheery, bright and pleasant... maybe your friend was throwin down a compliment ;)
  • RITS

    Posts: 156

    Mar 02, 2009 4:27 AM GMT
    I personally like to say "that's straight" around my straight friends....even out the playing field.
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    Mar 02, 2009 4:40 AM GMT
    Yeah, I find myself saying "That is so butch" to my lesbian friends sometimes.
  • dannyboy1101

    Posts: 977

    Mar 02, 2009 4:42 AM GMT
    I feel that as long as that phrase is used, we all will be second class citizens. I understand that's it's new slang, but I still correct people when I hear it. I've caught some of my students using that or the "that's retarded" and I always stop them because it's highly inappropriate. And then there was the day that one of my principals used both phrases in the space of five minutes in the main office. Oh, the irony.
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    Mar 02, 2009 4:43 AM GMT
    your friend, who gets offended, needs to stop being offended by petty things like that.

    if he doesnt like the way your straight friend talks then dont hang out with them together, its that simple
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    Mar 02, 2009 4:45 AM GMT
    scottycdn saidthats so gay! has meaning if we give it as much. I have used it to describe something that is stupid, lame, etc.... people focus way too much on semantics, let us not forget gay used to mean happy, cheery, bright and pleasant... maybe your friend was throwin down a compliment ;)


    That's unlikely given the context in which he uses the phrase. Once again, I have no issues whatsoever...one of my gay friends just flew off the deep end when he used it in his presence..i thought he over reacted
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    Mar 02, 2009 4:54 AM GMT
    You wanna know the best way of reinforcing an idea and guaranteeing that it will see the most popular and widespread use?

    Making a big deal out of it. So yes, Wanda Sykes and Hilary Duff, please continue championing our cause. Because rising to the bait and reacting is exactly what people are looking for.

    Is it pleasant? Not particularly. But it will pass. I'd argue that the gay community's inability to laugh at ourselves is more of an impediment than evolving semantics.
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    Mar 02, 2009 5:42 AM GMT
    Caslon5billion saidSince you know your friend isnt saying it in a homophobic way, but just using it as slang for "lame," I probably wouldnt be offended. But I probably would still object because it perpetuates the stereotype that "gay" isnt as good as the others.

    We had a discussion about this on another thread recently, I think one of the suggestions was to start saying "that's so hetro" meaning lame and see the response you get from your friend. I doubt your friend will be offended. He will probably laugh. But he might also see how it sounds.


    This is why Caslon is our leader!
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    Mar 02, 2009 7:24 AM GMT
    LAME.

    I don't allow my kids to use that phrase... ever. They learn pretty quick. At the school where I work, the phrase has pretty much died because I am such a nazi about it...

    that and the little ones (principal included) are afraid of me. icon_wink.gif
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    Mar 02, 2009 7:29 AM GMT
    that was what I told my ex while we were having sex..."this is so gay"
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    Mar 02, 2009 7:38 AM GMT

    When my gay friend do something wrong or bad I say "omg you are really gay !!" ... I've been using this since ever and he still ask if I'm serious or not ..
    I guess it's nice when someone gay say it, and you know he's kidding ..


    BTW , Charlitos' butt is so gay ..
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    Mar 02, 2009 10:22 AM GMT
    I do actually find it offensive.

    I'm not so much offended by the thoughtless individual using the phrase, but the fact that it's becoming a common phrase. the people who say this probably don't give it much thought, but the phrase undoubtedly states that: gay = bad.

    not really very progressive, especially when young kids start picking up the phrase, and they'll learn the meaning of the word gay as something lame/negative, before they learn its' other meanings.

    another point is double standards. People are so careful about saying anything that might sound racist or attacking someones religion.
    It wouldn't be as widely accepted in public to use phrases linked to other population groups like jews, or blacks or muslims, as a general derogatory phrase.
    Only people who hold extremist views actually do that (and mean it).

    Another example:
    Curse words like Shit and Fuck are bleeped out on tv.... words like that don't offend whole population groups, and are politically neutral, so I find them much less offensive than someone saying "that's so gay".

    I wish people would use the word in its original meaning, I know I will.
    Have a gay ol' time everybody! icon_smile.gif
  • GQjock

    Posts: 11649

    Mar 02, 2009 10:45 AM GMT
    It does have a double meaning and the secondary usage is derogatory
    meaning anything that is
    not worth it
    not up to par
    or lame
    ..... where it can be of serious problem and where it is used most often is among children and adolescents
    Words are weaponry
    and when a word such as gay ... can be used as anything "less than"
    what will people associate then with the Real thing?
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    Mar 02, 2009 11:05 AM GMT
    Teachers should fight this tendency!

    By only using the word in its original meaning... that should cause some funny situations LOL

    "Good morning students, did you have gay weekend, I certainly did. I've really been looking forward to this class with you, you're such a gay bunch of kids!" icon_lol.gif
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    Mar 02, 2009 11:33 AM GMT
    Personally I say "Thats gay...and not in the good way".
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    Mar 02, 2009 12:54 PM GMT
    It depends on how it is used. My friends say it and they look at me and apologize....I usually say that use of it was not meant to be hurtful and saying it was justified. Hell, I say it to them if they say something foolish/lame.
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    Mar 02, 2009 12:58 PM GMT
    My little brothers are 13, 12, and 11.
    Them, and their friends, my cousins too all repeat the phrase.

    I respond with, there is nothing wrong with being gay, straight, fat, ugly, girl, retarded, etc.

    Wonda and The Ad Counsel:
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    Mar 02, 2009 1:04 PM GMT
    pretty good ad!
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    Mar 02, 2009 1:17 PM GMT
    Lets put it in a different context. If the guy said "that's black" when referring to something that's negative, would you then find it offensive enough to comment on it.

    If you don't find this altered situation offensive then there's no issue here.
    But if you do, then the issue is that while your a proud as black man, you're ashamed of being gay.

    If you say "that's different" then your justifying your shame.
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    Mar 02, 2009 2:00 PM GMT
    My German students pick up this phrase from American TV shows and movies they see. I don't let them use it in my class though. I explain why it's offensive.

    Personally it really depends on the situation. I've had a straight friend say it around me and I gave him the "hairy eyeball" until he realized what he'd done. Don't like to make a huge deal out of it, but I think it just keeps subconsciously beating into people's minds that being gay is something bad.
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    Mar 02, 2009 2:55 PM GMT
    i don't mind it- as long as it's not being said hatefully. it bothers me that so many people are so sensitive these days- political correctness anoys the hell outa me so i don't make too big a deal of these things when they arise.

    my fraternity brothers all know i'm gay and often catch themselves saying 'that's gay' around me- then they scramble over themselves to try and apologize and ask if i'm offended... i just wave it off and tell 'em its no big deal- its not personal- its just a phrase. they respect me a lot more for being able to laugh it off.

    i myself used to say 'that's retarded' until a girl looked at me once after i said it and told me her little brother was autistic and could i please not say that again. made me think... u never know who you're offending.... but i think in most cases, if something like that offends someone, they're a little too delicate for my company anyways. they take themselves too seriously.


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    Mar 02, 2009 3:12 PM GMT
    I didn't know until recently that the word "gay" had been hijacked by younger people to mean "lame" or "stupid". I am personally not offended (I have a thick skin), but I can understand why some gay people would be. After all it is being used as a putdown.

    I personally think people spend way too much brain power making themselves feel better by putting other people down, instead of examining themselves, and realizing they are not that special and should be careful where they are indiscriminately throwing stones. But maybe my view on human behaviour is lame or "gay".
  • oxdr

    Posts: 92

    Mar 02, 2009 3:48 PM GMT
    Wouldn't mind at all. My brothers say it all the time. So do I.