Thursday, September 08, 2005

Gay is the new Stupid

Anyone who has kids knows that the word "gay" has become a part of the lexicon of today's youth. As in, "you're gay", "that's so gay", or just plain "GAY!" There's no actual comment about sexual preference being implied when they use the word "gay". The word I can most closely relate it to, based on hearing it a mulitpilicity of times and insterting another word, is "stupid".

When I first started hearing "gay" used this way I was shocked and appalled. It was highly offensive to me then because I still associated it with being degrading toward gay people. I found it appalling to think kids were calling each other "gay" when I know how hurtful it can be, particularly for adolescents who may be struggling with their sexuality, or, if they're not struggling with it, certainly don't want to be accused of struggling with it. It just seems over-the-top rude to me. Or it did.

But now, I find myself frustrated because I've become so accustomed to hearing "gay" that I don't even consider it a big deal anymore. It's use has become second nature to an entire generation of young people. It's never meant as a compliment, but it's become so normal that it's not really that great of an insult either, if that makes sense.

I asked my gay friend if he was greatly offended by it's use and he said "no". He basically said that it wasn't that big a deal to him. I'm almost wondering if the using of it, even in this negative context, is somehow normalizing the whole issue.

Just thinking out loud.


dcman20042005 said...

hey grace--

I've started my blog, true to your request. i've been thinking about it for a while. check it out; i'm very blog-unsavvy and it's going to take some work. any and all feedback and tips on layout/etc. is appreciated!

grace said...

Yeah! I'm going to check it out right now!

rex said...

I don't know in the US, but over here in Malaysia and Singapore, it becomes a slightly negative adjective said only when such negative connotations is a personal opinion. Like "that restaurant is so gay".

Hey, thanks for linking me.

grace said...

Thanks for your comment, Rex.

I have no idea why I hadn't linked you all ready. :)

Willie Hewes said...

Normalising the issue? Yes, but in a very bad way. Gay=stupid is a message that will without doubt make its way into the minds of this generation.

It is a big deal, and I will yell at anyone who says it isn't.