Divided We Fall

It was while watching Marvel's The Avengers that I realized why it's such an uphill battle for the gay community to achieve equal rights or gain even a modicum of respect from the rest of the world. When the superheroes were fighting each other, I remembered an article I read earlier about the movie, how the director fought for Black Widow to be included in the lineup. His argument was simple: take the woman out and it becomes a very homoerotic movie.

I don't know how my mind connects these things, but it's hard for us to get a foothold of being treated as equals, because we ourselves have certain biases within us. There's a certain kind of gay that's acceptable and there are those who are only good for ridicule. P're effem ka ba? While I don't see anything wrong in preferring certain types when looking for a partner or relationship, I find it sad how others could be so condemning of something that's inherent--and maybe even unchangeable--on someone. So you don't like effeminate people. That's fine. Don't get a boyfriend who's effeminate. But don't go out maligning someone, criticizing someone, laughing at him behind his back because he doesn't fit your idea of the "cool" gay. Tolerance is not exclusive to the straight-acting, to the tops, to those with six-pack abs, the young, the healthy, the moneyed, the perfect and the beautiful.

I read an article about a gay guy who's in his early 40s. He went to a gay bar and he overheard someone tell another person: is it oldies night tonight? It didn't take long before the guy killed himself. His friends thought he had it made. He was successful, rich and had a body that would shame a guy half his age, but nobody knew the loneliness in him, of being 40 and feeling over-the-hill and unwanted. It's a harsh world out there, true. But it's a harsher world within ours. It's worse for us than for women. We reach a certain age and that's it, you're a social outcast once more. No matter how much you try to look younger or fitter, no matter how successful you are, there's a threshold for acceptability.

We're so fragmented. It's so easy to destroy us because we can't even accept each other. There's a lot of gay bashing, gossiping, rumormongering within us. I'm not sure if it's envy or insecurity, but some of us are threatened by how different others are. We try to change them, control them. If we can't, we bring them down, make them feel a little less human.

How can we demand equal rights when we can't even tolerate and respect our own kind?

Burn the gays, half the world would say.

Hey, there's no need. We burn our own.


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