Peter G (sinetimore) wrote,
Peter G

A Camp For Guys Who Like Playing With Their Balls

Before I get to the latest thing that's pissing me off, let me start with a simple illustration.  I would like to illustrate the difference between general group behaviors and stereotypes.

Now, general group behaviors are just that.  General.  Take any collective of people with similar circumstances and you'll find some things enjoyed by the majority of the group.  Not everyone, but the majority.  This is also known as "marketing demographics."  Not all men enjoy action movies and women parading around in little attire and guys getting hurt for the amusement of others.  But enough do that there is a TV network with nothing but that, Spike TV.  Not all women are into women in jeopardy movies and such, but enough are that there is a TV network for them, Lifetime.  There are certain behaviors shared by many in a particular subculture.

The problem is when these generalities are regarded as absolutes.  If so and so is part of this group, they MUST enjoy this because others in this group enjoy it.  This is stereotyping.  This is where it goes wrong, because people are not being defined by what they may or may not enjoy, but by what the observer feels they should be enjoying.

Let's take a good look at me, your friendly neighborhood manga-ka.  I am a straight male.  According to generalities, I should enjoy sports and other "manly" pursuits.  Instead, I can't stand most sports (and have more or less given up on basketball) and have a thing for mermaids and watch My Little Pony -- Friendship Is Magic.  Does this mean I am not a straight male?  No, it just mean my interests are at odds with what is generally considered straight male behavior.  There's no cause and effect, liking these things doesn't make me any less a straight male.  But someone who thinks it does?  THEY have the problem.

(I also note that some people think, because my interests are so...unique that I'm a wimp and an easy target.  I'm open about enjoying these things because, should someone try and stir up shit, I can more than handle it, something a few people found out a little too late.  I can express myself freely because I don't have to hide it.)

When it comes to straight males, one of the biggest lines of logical fallacy is sports.  Manly men like manly things, so manly men will like sports.  As I've mentioned, I'm a straight male who doesn't care about sports.  And I'm not alone.  It may be the minority, but there are plenty of straight guys who don't like sports.  Likewise, I know plenty of gay men who dig sports, and not in the "fantasy about sweaty guys in the locker room" way, they appreciate and enjoy the game and can argue basketball fundamentals with me all day.  According to the manly men/manly things, THEY should be the ones watching MLP-FiM and I should be figuring out what the fuck a Cover 2 is.  But we like our own stuff and it reflects our tastes, not our sexualities.

The reason for me rambling on as above is we have a new entry in the "pray away the gay" sweepstakes.  We've seen denying your sexuality doesn't make it go away.  We've seen brainwashing cannot overwrite how those little neurons in your brain have come together.  One of the founders of "pray away the gay" has even admitted he was wrong.  And yet people still cling to this stupid idea that homosexuality is something that needs to be "fixed."

Courage (he said, and pointed toward the land....) is the name of a Catholic group that tries to teach gay Christians to remain celibate and resist their homosexual urges (trying to get ANY guys to deny ANY sexual urges is pretty much a lost cause to begin with).  They are holding their thirteenth annual sports camp where, according to the web site, “men physically compete on the field while enriching their souls through a daily regimen of prayer, confessions, mass, and the Liturgy of the Hours.”  Basically, the camp is hoping that, by giving men the chance to do manly things, they'll become regular men.  You know, straight men.  It's such a preposterous notion, I don't see how anyone thinks that it would work.  In fact, a camp for men isolated from society, no prying eyes to judge them, usually is the start of a lot of lemon party erotica out there.  It's not going to inspire people to respect them, it's just going to make people like me snicker uncontrollably.

One of Courage's proponents is Paul Kleponis, a therapist at the Institute For Marital Healing in West Conshohocken (and you would not believe how many times I had to retype that because of sarcastic typos my unconscious mind kept channeling through my fingers).  He speaks at Courage conferences, and has his own beliefs about what causes homosexuality.  The bullet points:

*  He believes homosexuality is the result of childhood rejection and trauma.  That can't be true, or every boy in high school except the one with the most expensive car would be gay.

*  Part of that rejection can be linked to failure at sports.  Once again, lots of guys suck at sports, and they aren't suddenly turning gay.

*  He says that boys who are rejected because they can’t play sports “begin to identify with the female instead of the male.”  Yeah, because women totally can't do sports at all.  Nice to see he's not limiting his bigotry to just one group.

*  The problem is bad hand-eye coordination (I'm not making this shit up, this is part of his speech at a Courage rally in St. Louis in 2006).  So if guys develop good hand-eye coordination, they will succeed at sports, and that will keep them from being gay.

Which just proves that the Internet isn't the only place where bullshit is accepted as fact.

Whatever happened to live and let live?
Tags: did not do the research, don't say i didn't warn you, don't try this at home, duh, haven't we suffered enough, hypocrisy, i'm such a bitch, infernal gall, let's talk about sex bay-bee!, lord hear our prayer, religion, sez who? sez me!, stupidity, wrong on every level, wtf
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