There’s a lot of talk about sexual identity and gender and gayness going around this week, and there’s one particular aspect of this that I would, in fact like to weigh in on. That’s the notion that any of this stuff, be it exotic, highly of-the-moment issues like gender dysphoria or just regular, boring old gayness is something that people choose. I KNOW I’m preaching to the choir here, but it’s INSANE to think that someone would choose to willingly forego basic human rights or undergo risky procedures because ‘fuck it. that sounds like a cool thing to do.’ I’ve struggled my entire adult life to understand this point of view, but recently I read or heard something and it all clicked for me and I’d like to share my insights with y’all.
Okay, firstly, we’ve all seen the studies that correlate homophobia and gayness, right? For those of you who haven’t, it’s essentially scientific evidence that the ol’ “methinks the lady doth protest too much” maxim is true when it comes to people who are really outspoken about hating gays. Why are they so angry? Because they’re gayer than Christmas themselves. You hardly need a study for this though. It’s behavior that we see all the time. Ted Haggard, Larry Craig, Marcus Bachman, the list goes on and on and on. There’s very little question in my mind that Rick Santorum is going to find himself using a “those three dicks were wrestling in my mouth without my knowledge or consent” argument before too long (which is gonna be awesome, by the way).
These people, the people I mentioned above, they’re all of the opinion that being gay is a choice. Despite science (which some of them admittedly dismiss as snobbish bullshit [which is a whole other topic that’s so mind bogglingly infuriating that I can’t even think about it right now]), despite the fact that it makes no logical sense, despite the fact that NO ONE would ever choose to exist as a marginalized and maligned member of society if they didn’t have to, they stand by this notion. “Being gay is a choice.” Do you know why they think/say/believe this? The answer is strangely obvious: Because for them, for your Haggards, your Craigs, your Bachmans and Santorums, it IS a choice…it’s a choice they struggle not to make each and every day.
See, to someone who’s born gay, but too much of a coward to face their own biological desires head on, there’s a choice, and there’s only one choice. That’s to batten down and repress those desires, find one woman you can bear, pump kids into her until she never wants to see your penis again (contrary to what logic may seem to dictate, people with lots of kids have WAY less sex than people with just a couple, or no kids), and think of baseball statistics every time wrestling or competitive diving comes on television. Do you see what I’m saying? It’s a choice. The choice being made is to repress your desires, become spiteful and shitty and lash out at the gay people who were braver than you and who made the choice to live with the biological imperatives that they were born with and not be subject to the jealous hateful bullshit rules of a vocal minority of closeted, self loathing queers who can’t stand that they have to fuck people like Michelle Bachman while there are real live dens of depraved awesomeness right there in the city operating as though SOME OF US hadn’t made the hard, soul crushing choice to not be gay.
I mean, they’re kind of right, in a way. In a society where being straight is the celebrated and rewarded norm, being gay may not be a choice, but being straight sure as hell is, and if you’re too much of a chickenshit to listen to your body and id, well, you can make the choice to be very, very unfulfilled and bitter and ‘straight.’ Because let me tell you something: if I lived in a world where gayness was the norm, and it would disappoint my parents and my social circles if I came out as a straight guy, I could probably choke down a dick or two for the cameras just to take the pressure off, but there’s no way I could reasonably keep that up for very long. I could ‘choose’ the easy path for a while, in hopes that I’d learn to like it or come around, but it would never be something that would excite or fulfill me in any way whatsoever. I just know my own body well enough to know that. I think anyone that’s truly comfortable with their orientation can say the same thing: ‘the way I’m wired is the way I’m wired and there’s no changing it, no matter what.’ It’s only the people who are still (figuratively) choking down vaginas to keep the cameras off of them that seem to think there’s any kind of choice in the matter. And I guess there is. It’s like when you really, really, really want to eat, but you don’t, despite what your body is telling you and despite the huge amount of damage you’re doing to yourself. That’s a choice. It’s a choice to be fucking miserable, and transparently making a choice that goes against your own fundamentally hardwired desires.
Uh, yeah. That’s all I got. As you were.