Hairdressers, Ballerinas, and Interior Designers We All Are Not!

Vintage Photo Circa 1940's

I was just looking at an interesting web page called "Famous Homosexuals in History."  Why, you may ask, was I looking at this?  Actually I started out looking at gay photographic art from the 1800's and early 1900's since I have a great interest in photography.  Two of my favorites are Horst P Horst, who did a lot of portraits of famous people in fashion, like Coco Chanel, and the other is Durieu.  Durieu did a lot of work with homoerotic photographs and Delacroix used his work to paint from in the late 1800's.  This search made me think about how many famous gay people there have been in history.  Great writers, Kings, conquerors, scientists, singers, painters, philosophers, and the list goes on.  If you have an interest in some of these references please check out the links at the end of this blog entry....
Vintage Photo Circa 1950's

It also made me think about a few comments from straight friends and coworkers over the years.  Thinks like, "he doesn't look gay," and "I cant believe that he has that kind of job and is gay?" and even "do your people celebrate Christmas?"  It amazes me that people subscribe to so many stereotypes! It would be like me saying ...."you don't look straight" or "I can't believe that a woman is a doctor."  How stupid is that? Exactly how is a gay person supposed to look?  Are we supposed to be wearing effeminate clothing, and talk with a lisp?  Are we supposed to have highlighted hair, and wear designer clothes and walk with a swish?  It all seems so ludicrous to me..

I am a homosexual.  I have known that I was gay since I was probably ten years old.  When most of you were figuring out that you liked the opposite sex I was figuring out that I liked other guys.  Coming out was a very difficult process for me and it took me many years to complete it.  I came out to most of my friends and coworkers when I was in my very early 20's.  I didn't come out to my immediate family until I was 30.  The thing was that they already knew!  My parents already knew anyway. My Mother was more upset when I told her that I was smoking!  I was very fortunate to have support from a lot of great friends and also from my parents and grandmother who never even flinched when I told them.  They have never ever made it an issue for me and accept me for who I am.  I have been very lucky....others have not.  I have heard stories of people coming out and losing their family...their kids...their friends...and even their jobs!  
Vintage Photograph Circa 1940's

Let me give you a few facts about being gay or lesbian:

1. Not all gay people are effeminate....in fact some of us are athletes or even body builders.
2. Not all gay people are hairdressers, ballerinas, florists, flight attendants, or interior decorators
3. Just because we are gay doesn't mean that we don't like being men. 
4. We don't all know each other.....there isn't some master list!
5. We really do have families, and lasting relationships just like straight people do!
6. The word "fag" is offensive and a slur and its not ok to use it!
7. Being gay isn't some choice....any more than you chose to be straight.
8. There is no gay agenda!  Trust me ....we aren't out converting people!
9. We don't hate women!
10. Love is love....my love for a boyfriend doesn't feel any different than love in a straight relationship!  Its two humans loving each other.
11.  The pink triangle  was the symbol sewn into concentration camp uniforms and given to homosexuals in the camps.  We didn't chose it..it was given to us.

12.  The whole slang thing....the "that's so GAYYYY" really is offensive, and saying..."oh, I didn't mean it that way" is not a good excuse.
13.10% of the worlds population is gay..that's a HUGE number.
14. Coming out...or admitting to our families and friends and coworkers is never an easy thing.  Some of us are not lucky, and may lose our families, children, and friends in the process.
15. Gay people do NOT have the same rights that straight people take for granted. If my boyfriend were on his death bed in a hospital...I would have no say over what happens to him.  If he died, I would have to pay tax on a house that I may already have owned. 
16. 50,000 gays and lesbians were placed in concentration camps during the war and were not released even after the war was over....they were sent to prisons. 
17.  Gay and lesbian kids face bullying everyday...and many are scarred for the rest of their lives because of something that they have no choice over.
18. Many companies still discriminate and many places don't have laws protecting us from it.
19. You can not say racial slurs on the television or radio but you can use slurs against gays and lesbians without repercussion. 
20. Saying "I am ok with gay people as long as they aren't too flamboyant or open about their sexuality" is not Ok.  Do we ask you to hide being straight or ask you to deny being who you are?

Its going to be 2011 soon.  Lets all try to be a little more understanding toward each and open our eyes to the many different aspects and cultures that surround us. 

Euro-Pride- Stockholm, Sweden 2010 By: Michael Bell 
300,000 people attended the parade in Stockholm that day.  The parade was 3 hours long and bisected the city of Stockholm.  Its time that the silence ends....


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