bellatrys (bellatrys) wrote,
bellatrys
bellatrys

Phobia & Hypocrisy

Sorry, but if you believe, against all objective evidence, that a very small, unorganized minority of people from across all walks of life, social classes, ethnic groups, religious backgrounds and political alleigances united only by a shared nonconformity which cannot be shown (objectively, again) to be any more harmful to other individuals than traits which you approve of, are, by virtue of their mere existence liable to destroy the very fabric of civilization and so must be punished severely for their existence - then yes, you are indeed and practically the walking definition of, irrational fear. If you keep on saying so, publically, over the course of almost two decades, people have a right to point this out.

That it hurts your feelings, Mr. Card and others sharing oars in this boat, is irrelevant, because it is accurate. Refraining from using the word 'kleptomaniac' because it hurts Uncle Bob's feelings does not make it any safer to leave valuables unattended in poor dear Robert's presence, and no matter how many 'reasonable' excuses he comes up with to explain how he just 'accidentally' ended up with your wallet, your keys, your sunglasses and your class ring in his pocket, they are not going to be true, or valid, or make it right for him to go on "just holding on to them to keep them safe from neighborhood children who might sneak into the house and steal them"--! Hypothetical Uncle Bob is a kleptomaniac who cannot be trusted around anything that is not nailed down. Non-hypothetical Orson Scott Card is a homophobe who thinks that gays should be punished by the state in various unspecified ways to make them stop being gay in public, and has said so repeatedly in unlocked published articles. Q.E.D.

The state-sponsored, church-backed persecution that OSC would restore against GLBT citizens as it existed historically, and which goes on mostly-informally and often fatally to this very hour in this country, in his own mind does not hold a candle to the social disdain and ostracization by (mostly) strangers whom he does not have to deal with on a daily basis, but this is a sign of further lack of touch with reality - and his delusions start looking more and more like classic Narcissism, on top of the usual bubble-mentality of those True Believers who both don't get out very much and don't understand the concept of reciprocity, generally:

OSC. I think gay people should be punished by the government so that they can't Destroy Civilization!

A Large Chunk of the Internets: Card, you are irrationally afraid of gay people! And fear leads to hate, which is what you are displaying!

OSC. Waaaah! The mean lying h8ters are calling me irrationally afraid of gay people! And a h8ter! But THEY'RE the REAL haters!

Another Large Chunk of the Internets: We know! It's so unfair of them to pick on us and call us irrationally afraid just because we aren't afraid of the Lavender Mafia and will Fearlessly Tell The Truth about how they're going to Destroy Civilization if allowed to go on as they are!

First Large Chunk of the Internets: Well, you totally ARE! You're afraid for stupid, hateful 'reasons' that make no sense.

OSC and ALCI following: Waaaah! We're being persecuted! The meanies are calling us stupid, hateful cowards for saying that those scary, scary queers are scary and dangerous! Fetch us our smelling salts! How can we go on in the face of such persecution?!?

FLCI: That word - we do not think it means what you think it means...


But hey, what about all the people who say "I'm not SCARED of Teh Gay, I just think it's Morally Wrong!" Walp, I've addressed this before, but I'll happily say it again: if you really "just" think something's a sin, then what are you doing trying to legislate it? Unless you can prove it's an injustice - not just a violation of your personal religious code - then you have no right to drag the government in, unless you really want the state in there dragging you out of bed and into a church on Sunday, or synagogue on Saturday, or mosque on Friday, or yanking that bacon-double-cheeseburger out of your mouth, or making every state in the union drier than Utah - but for some reason, though drinking so much as a wine cooler is a sin in his church, you never hear (afaik) OSC demanding a return of the Volstead Act, though FAR more lives are destroyed by alcoholism and alcohol abuse every year than by consensual adult sex of any sort.

So unless you're trying to get the state to stop marrying divorcees, or keep track of people's confessions and ban them from the communion line if they haven't made quota, or punish heretics by making it impossible for them to adopt or have any protection against being fired for their heterodoxy, then you're a homophobe AND a hypocrite - and if you are then you're a theocrat who's arguably doing far more to Destroy Civilization As We Know It than any two men or two women making out, even on the streetcorner in broad daylight.

Likewise, the excuse that "I'm not SCARED of homosexuality, I just think it's GROSS! mumblemumbleunless it's two chicks" falls apart. There's lots of stuff that lots of people think is gross, but few of us try to legislate it - or its enjoyers - out of existence. I, personally, as I mentioned in comments at Feministe, find the idea of people eating raw shellfish to be revolting in the extreme. I get queasy hearing people talk about it. I get queasy thinking about it. I don't understand how anyone can want to do it, and I find it difficult to regard people the same way if I found out they like to slurp down raw oysters. I can make a mental exception for people in shipwreck/survival situations, but don't for the love of Mike tell me about it!

And yet, you never have, and never will, seen me agitating for the banning of oyster bars, or the legislating of raw shellfish serving at restaurants out of existence, or for punishing people purchasing molluscs for the purpose of taking them home and not baking or frying or sauteeing them. Not even on the grounds of "protecting" said raw-shellfish consumers from their own folly, from the risks of food poisoning and parasites. And, if there were some 'libertarian' movement started to stop health inspection of shellfish on the grounds that raw oyster eaters ought to 'take responsibility' for themselves (by carrying a microscope at all times, I guess) and stop wasting tax money, I'd be duty-bound to oppose that.

It's not a moral issue. It's not even a justice issue. It's a squick, and nobody has the right to legislate their squicks. I don't eat raw oysters, and I avoid the matter whenever possible. That's all. (I wouldn't even be talking about it now, if I didn't need to provide a personal example of something that squicks me so badly - the thing itself, not any specific execution - that was nonetheless fairly widespread, for the sake of discussion, because I am not secretly attracted to the idea, I would eat beetles first.)

And I have friends - poor things! - who are completely grossed out by the idea of eating cooked fish, but if they tried to take my haddock away from me they wouldn't be friends very much longer. But, since they're not piscaphobes, not rampaging narcissists whose very identity is threatened by the existence of people making different choices, they don't, and I don't try to force them to eat cooked fish, either.

But that's what it looks like, when something is really just a matter of visceral disgust: only complete cranks and unconscious narcissists think that their personal distate for something in itself harmless overrides (or ought to, if the world were properly run) everyone else's freedom to enjoy the same.

Mere visceral disgust doesn't result in death threats for public dissenters. Mere visceral disgust doesn't result in death for nonconformists. (The very existence of the 'Gay/Trans Panic Defense' is an admission by the state and by the public at large that it is nothing but phobia: but there is never any attempt to explain why the irrational terrors of the perpetrators are considered justification for anything but a straight-jacket and a one-way ticket to a Home for the violently-insane.)

Neither does mere disapproval of that which is considered verboten under the terms of one's religion or ethical beliefs. If every market and restaurant in town were required to keep and enforce the terms of Catholic fasts in Lent, most anti-gay crusaders' demands for legislated religion would dry up in a hurry. ("No, sir, your blood sugar test shows that you've already had the equivalent of a full meal today, all I can give you is a half-sandwich. No, you can only have cheese or fish, it's Friday.") It takes something more to push one over the edge from refraining myself from this action into persecution of others who do not refrain.

And it's the same thing whether it's torturing/killing/imprisoning/discriminating against/banishing (& stealing their stuff) - or just endorsing some or any of that, and turning a blind eye when it happens - of people who are a different color, or speak a different language, or worship on a different day and in a different way than you, or don't worship at all, or who wear their hair and clothes in a way that you think is funny and listen to different music than you like (what IS with all the hippie-hate from people who weren't even BORN in 1968?) or live together without being married, or in this case want to get married, or who vocally disagree with you and aren't directly smitten down by lightning from above so you need to do the smiting yourself in order to prove that you're not wrong for disagreeing with them - it's hate, it's fear, it's irrational, and it doesn't deserve to be justified with any kind of respect.

The burden is on the fearer to prove that his/her fear is rational and nothing that OSC - or an of the "Don't call us homophobes!" brigade - have written, being riddled with outright historical lies and unproven metaphysical assertions - does that in the least. And if you insist on your right to call a group of random people society-destroying monsters more dangerous than enemies with bombs and guns, who are damaging their fellow citizens by their very existence and ought to be imprisoned - which is eliminationist talk, incitement to violence even if you then say in your mealy mouthed way 'but nobody should HURT them, oh no', and whether you realize it or not - then you damn well better be prepared to have angry words dished right back at you by those people and their friends, and only a hypocrite would disallow the validity of such a response.
Tags: bigotry, fandom, glbt, history, homophobia, hypocrisy, stupidity
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