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Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual Stereotypes... why? Options · View
Dancing_Doll
Posted: Wednesday, November 20, 2013 2:00:52 PM

Rank: Alpha Blonde

Joined: 2/17/2010
Posts: 6,298
Location: West Coast
I go to Pride almost every year - mostly because it's a brilliant party and I like these kinds of festivals in general. I love the crazy fun and warm attitude and yes, even the spectacle of it all. My accountant dances on one of those floats in silver holographic briefs but in regular life, he's in a suit. It's just part of the fun. I don't go trying to understand what gay people are like because I know enough of them in my personal and professional life to know that they are just like straight people, except they prefer the same sex when it comes to dating and sex. It's no different than going to Mardi Gras and assuming that all women will flash their tits for a string of cheap plastic beads when really it's just part of the festival culture.

I don't think of gay men or lesbians in terms of stereotypes, although I *do* know some gay men that fit that stereotype by no fault of their own. They're not conforming to anything - they just like fashion and clubbing and having fun. I adore them! But I don't assume they are representative of the entire gay culture. Because this small segment is the most different from what guys and preconceived masculinity are assumed to be like, they probably just stand out more and that's how the stereotypes generate and gain momentum, thus totally negating the rest of the gay population because they're not as visible and just blend in with the rest of the crowd that forms what we see as typical examples of the 'male gender' or 'female gender'. If people live sheltered lives or live in areas where coming out is still not the norm, then they will probably look for the most obvious examples, which will always be stereotypes.


dpw
Posted: Wednesday, November 20, 2013 6:47:03 PM

Rank: Forum Guru

Joined: 9/15/2013
Posts: 3,218
Location: Liverpool, United Kingdom
Dancing_Doll wrote:
I go to Pride almost every year - mostly because it's a brilliant party and I like these kinds of festivals in general. I love the crazy fun and warm attitude and yes, even the spectacle of it all. My accountant dances on one of those floats in silver holographic briefs but in regular life, he's in a suit. It's just part of the fun. I don't go trying to understand what gay people are like because I know enough of them in my personal and professional life to know that they are just like straight people, except they prefer the same sex when it comes to dating and sex. It's no different than going to Mardi Gras and assuming that all women will flash their tits for a string of cheap plastic beads when really it's just part of the festival culture.

I don't think of gay men or lesbians in terms of stereotypes, although I *do* know some gay men that fit that stereotype by no fault of their own. They're not conforming to anything - they just like fashion and clubbing and having fun. I adore them! But I don't assume they are representative of the entire gay culture. Because this small segment is the most different from what guys and preconceived masculinity are assumed to be like, they probably just stand out more and that's how the stereotypes generate and gain momentum, thus totally negating the rest of the gay population because they're not as visible and just blend in with the rest of the crowd that forms what we see as typical examples of the 'male gender' or 'female gender'. If people live sheltered lives or live in areas where coming out is still not the norm, then they will probably look for the most obvious examples, which will always be stereotypes.

With all due respect you are an intelligent lady who has gay friends and who meets her gay accountant when he wears a suit. You know the difference but do the Jenkins (think that's the name) brothers who kidnapped and tried to kill a gay guy named Pennington in Kentucky? Isn't stereotyping at least partly to blame for homophobic assaults and because we exaggerate the flamboyance at carnival then we perpetuate it.
Guest
Posted: Wednesday, November 20, 2013 7:02:11 PM

Rank: Lurker

Joined: 12/1/2006
Posts: 537,411
No matter which group you belong to (and I'm not just talking sexual orientation here), there is always going to be a stereotype. It's a thing that humans do. It could be for a sense of protecting oneself, it could be because of a lack of understanding, or it could just be outright stupidity. Nobody really knows why stereotypes exist, just that they do. There are myriad reasons.
Dancing_Doll
Posted: Wednesday, November 20, 2013 8:11:47 PM

Rank: Alpha Blonde

Joined: 2/17/2010
Posts: 6,298
Location: West Coast
dpw wrote:

With all due respect you are an intelligent lady who has gay friends and who meets her gay accountant when he wears a suit. You know the difference but do the Jenkins (think that's the name) brothers who kidnapped and tried to kill a gay guy named Pennington in Kentucky? Isn't stereotyping at least partly to blame for homophobic assaults and because we exaggerate the flamboyance at carnival then we perpetuate it.


I know what you're saying, but by the same token, it can be argued that women who flash their breasts at Mardi Gras or who flaunt their sexuality by wearing certain clothes are being stereotyped as sluts which some idiots then see as partly responsible (or an influencer) for rape, assault or being objectified by men. Things like the Slut Walk bring awareness to sexual assault stereotypes. I see Pride as doing something similar for a different cause.

Now, sadly, as you mentioned, the tards and dumbasses may not see it as particularly enlightening, but just as another reason to hate. If Pride didn't exist though, would they be okay with homosexuality. Probably not. I think the key is still in education and awareness. You can argue that this requires global awareness and Pride marches (in order to get numbers) still defaults to creating a pomp and pageantry type spectacle - like Mardi Gras, Carnival etc. If it was a sombre, lowkey affair or march, nobody would show up, nor would it get the attention it does.

it's an interesting take on it though. Oddly enough I've never really questioned whether it was a good thing or not. Every gay person I know absolutely loves and endorses Pride so I've never heard the other side of the coin expressed as it being anything but positive. I feel so far removed from this 'small town homophobia' mentality that you can almost forget that it still exists before these atrocious cases in the media become reminders.


Kinky_Becky
Posted: Wednesday, November 20, 2013 8:41:56 PM

Rank: Forum Guru

Joined: 9/10/2012
Posts: 695
Location: Home, United States
Why?

There are gays who are out, and those that aren't. The ones that our out, tend to be VERY out. The ones that aren't, keep it to themselves. So just think about it. If you are walking down the street and see someone that is so flamboyant that everyone knows they are gay, the stereotype grows. They could have passed 10 gay guys, but if they act straight enough that no one knows they are gay, they don't fit the stereotype and it does nothing to destroy it.

Face it, everyone knows that not all gay people act a certain way. Everyone knows all black men don't have big cocks, or all Asian men have little ones. Everyone knows Jewish women don't all gossip. Everyone knows some old people drive well. Everyone knows some white men can jump and play basketball. Everyone knows all Texans don't ride horses to work or wear cowboy hats. It's generalities because enough of them do. It's how we group people, most likely because it's a protective measure. People who are most like us we feel safe around. People who are different from us we feel less so. Making those generalities helps us to set expectations when we meet someone new. For instance, you see a guy in a ski mask coming into the bank, are you going to think, "just because he's wearing a mask doesn't mean he's a thief, he could be going to a Halloween contest or going skiing," or are you going to dial 911?

As long as you understand that stereotypes are just that, and are willing to judge people for who they are, not on a stereotype, I don't see the harm.

SereneProdigy
Posted: Wednesday, November 20, 2013 11:53:27 PM

Rank: Forum Guru

Joined: 7/16/2013
Posts: 1,653
Location: Lost And Astray
dpw wrote:

With all due respect you are an intelligent lady who has gay friends and who meets her gay accountant when he wears a suit. You know the difference but do the Jenkins (think that's the name) brothers who kidnapped and tried to kill a gay guy named Pennington in Kentucky? Isn't stereotyping at least partly to blame for homophobic assaults and because we exaggerate the flamboyance at carnival then we perpetuate it.


To be fair, I think these extreme occurences are a different phenomenon. To me, such people were simply looking for an easy prey to express their general hatred (which is often nothing more than self-directed frustration). If they didn't act it out on an homosexual, they might as well have acted it out on a nerd, a punk or an ethnic person. Those persons are pretty much lost causes in anything relating to tolerance or acceptance, unless they seek major psychological help, in my humble opinion.

But your intervention raises another thought for me. In a way, stereotypes can be used to create a general mental representation of a certain group of people, but in another stereotypes allow a specific person to be judged and given certain affiliations according to his appearance. We've discussed the former phenomenon at lenght previously, but only merely brushed the latter.

In the case of homosexuals, I think it can be annoying/disturbing for a person that's 'obviously gay' to be identified as such. I can't talk for everybody, but I've met some of those 'obviously gay' persons in my life ; they basically had all the stereotypes (lisping with a feminine voice, gait, mannerisms, one of them being an hairstylist, etc.). All of those traits were natural for them and out of their control, and yes, these men admitted being gay.

Most probably, the homosexual that dpw mentioned was also easily recognizable as such. I don't know the scientific explanation, but all the men I've seen who displayed those traits happened to be gay (maybe someone here has a different experience?). Surely these men wished at some point they could 'hide' their homosexuality, but probably had a lot of people through their life saying to them things like "You're gay right? Come on, admit it!", which most probably forced them to admit their homosexuality eventually.

These men would probably tend to blame stereotypes for allowing people to identify them as being gay, but as I've said, it can be hard for others not to see any connection. As Kinky_Becky mentioned, I think everybody establishes generalities to help us perceive and react to the world ; it's a very natural/basic instinct, no ways around it.

To me, the biggest issue is not really that stereotypes exist, but how some people might act according to them or use them to offend others. Each one of us relies on generalities that we build according to our own personal experiences ; these are essentially our own and help us understand the world. The problem arises when we try to impose our perceptions to others as an objective truth, mingle into others' affairs without shame, or use these generalities to fuel hateful arguments.



SereneProdigy
Posted: Thursday, November 21, 2013 12:22:36 AM

Rank: Forum Guru

Joined: 7/16/2013
Posts: 1,653
Location: Lost And Astray
Dancing_Doll wrote:
(...)

Now, sadly, as you mentioned, the tards and dumbasses may not see it as particularly enlightening, but just as another reason to hate. If Pride didn't exist though, would they be okay with homosexuality. Probably not. I think the key is still in education and tolerance. You can argue that this requires global awareness and Pride marches (in order to get numbers) still defaults to creating a pomp and pageantry type spectacle - like Mardi Gras, Carnival etc. If it was a sombre, lowkey affair or march, nobody would show up, nor would it get the attention it does.

it's an interesting take on it though. Oddly enough I've never really questioned whether it was a good thing or not. Every gay person I know absolutely loves and endorses Pride so I've never heard the other side of the coin expressed as it being anything but positive. I feel so far removed from this 'small town homophobia' mentality that you can almost forget that it still exists before these atrocious cases in the media become reminders.


I think there are many different levels of hate and intolerance. As I've mentioned in my previous post, some people are just hateful persons that hate just about anything ; those would hate homosexuals no matter what. Some of them are very hateful/intolerant, but are just not crazy enough to act on it. But I think many others are simply uneducated, for various reasons.

I think people such as us enjoy believing that we're tolerant to homosexuality by choice, but speaking for myself I pretty much grew up in 'winning conditions' : I come from a rather liberal family, I grew up in a major city and was always exposed to cultural phenomenons, I'm from a generation that's overall more tolerant than the preceding one, I've been part of scenes/domains where I've met many homosexuals, etc. I'm not sure I'd be as tolerant if my life experiences were the opposite of that, no matter my decisions or level of goodwill. Yet still, I could be educated about homosexuality to compensate for that lacking experience. I've met many people that were rather intolerant to homosexuality, but that were also overall 'good' people that wouldn't hurt others aimlessly.

Concerning Pride marches, I think the main issue is this : basically those who rally to it were already tolerant before, and those who were intolerant/uneducated remain intolerant/uneducated. As I've said much earlier in this thread, I think that organizing the event in such an extravagent manner has both advantages and disadvantages. But I do believe that the way it is now doesn't really educate people or help eliminating stereotypes.

If I was a movie director, hired heterosexuals to play a crowd of homosexuals, and presented those 'fake homosexuals' as gays appear in those events, most probably I'd be criticized for perpetuating stereotypes. I just don't see why homosexuals presenting themselves as such wouldn't have the same effect, especially since they're in fact real homosexuals acting according to their own will.



Guest
Posted: Saturday, November 23, 2013 6:12:04 PM

Rank: Lurker

Joined: 12/1/2006
Posts: 537,411
I have a cousin(love him to death) who is the stereotype but I have friends you would never guess. I think we live in a narrow society that has to find a way to make sense of people who are unlike them. There are so many ways to live life and most mainstream people don't know that.
lafayettemister
Posted: Friday, December 20, 2013 8:41:35 AM

Rank: Forum Guru

Joined: 10/4/2010
Posts: 6,373
Location: Alabama, United States
This is an ad for healthcare.gov... is it using stereotypes? Does this promote stereotypes or no different than Victoria Secret fashion show? "Out2Enroll Presents... 'Get Enrolled', A Full Frontal Freedom Production"







When the debate is lost, slander becomes the tool of the loser. Socrates
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