Monday, September 15, 2008

Boys and G0ys

It seems like every four or five months or so somebody surfaces from out of nowhere to remind me of the "g0y" movement. It's something I'd rather forget, to be quite honest.

At first glance, it seems like nothing new. People keep on coming up with labels for their own particular gender and sexual orientational crossroads- it starts as lesbian, breaks down to butches, and we add in the sexual components to get butch tops, butch bottoms, heck, even stone butches. And that's just one example. While it can be a doozy to keep track of all these terms, I generally like the creativity associated with them, the way they help to foster growing communities and battle stereotypes (helping to open up dialogues about diversity), and how they provide individuals with proud identities. Yeah . . . I'm not one of those people arguing "Why do we need labels? Who cares who you love?". I like labels and burgeoning identities.

So I really ought to be thrilled to see a new subset of the gay male, the g0y (yes, that's a zero in the middle, not an "oh", and no, I don't know how to pronounce it), who proclaims proudly that he is masculine, loves masculine men, and he doesn't have anal sex.

Only, there's more to it than that, you see.

A closer look at the g0y philosophy shows they have a lot of, shall we say, interesting ideas about gender and sex, and they come not from a place of personal preferences, but rather from a lot of theorizing and way more explanation than the above definition ought warrant. I mean, why would someone need several webpages defending and vehemently not apologizing for their personal identity in long, meandering passages?

G0y's do not only dislike anal sex for themselves- they dislike it for anyone. People who practice buttsex are labelled "phreaks" and deviants, and the reason for the practice's popularity is likened to the massive campaigns of the tobacco industry, and its affiliation with homosexuality compared to the Nazi takeover of the peaceful Indian symbol (note to the g0y's: actually, the symbol of the swastika is actually reversed, not as is). Strong words, stronger images. And all about a little anal play? Seriously? Nobody's punk'ing me?

But of course, the condemnation of anal sex is integral to maintaining a Christian front. Manipulate scripture as you will- I'm no theologist and could care less. I've heard various sources say that the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah had to do with a lack of hospitality, not gay sex. I've heard some say it was all about man-on-man action, but it don't really matter, because Jesus never said a thing about guys getting together. I've heard some very smart people (okay, well, that's my subjectivity showing through) say that the Bible is reflective of the time in which it was written, and the social mores of that era, hence it can't be taken literally (moreover, there are lots of other things we have changed- women speaking out in church, for example- that wasn't in as much contention as the whole gay issue). But g0y's twist to the Word is a literal one- it's the anal sex that'll getcha sent to hell. Man-on-man lovin' is good in the eyes of the Lord, but "laying with a man as one would a woman"- nuh-uh, mister.

Funny, isn't it? I guess it all depends on your goals. If you're a gay guy longing to be accepted by God, you can tell yourself that. If you're a straight couple longing for some anal sex, though, well, you can talk your way to that, too- like the hilarious parody site Sex In Christ goes to show.

The other tenet of g0ydom is the emphasis on masculinity. Oh no, your Paul Lynde's and Buddy Cole's aren't welcome here. God only knows how they handle watching Jack on "Will and Grace". Now, I've encountered a lot of femme phobia- gay men who are squicked by the mincing and prancing and generally fun part of getting to be gay (you know, if you're so inclined). Every time I hear a gay man complain about stereotypical gay portrayals in the media, I sympathize, but at the same time, I hear those echoes of anti-femme- for effeminate gay men do exist. Some equality in representation of macho men and queens would be nice, but you can't eliminate either completely, no matter how much you wish you weren't associated with them. Your discomfort, I've always maintained, might just be your own hangup. But not so, say the g0ys. If you aren't a virile manly man, you've been brainwashed by the gays- another "phreak" delighting in your gender deviancy.

So. Do g0ys have some good points? Of course they do- that's what draws people to it in the first place (well, besides using their homophobic stances to draw in gay men in denial with self-internalized hatred). They quite correctly acknolwedge that media portrayals of gay men (or, I suppose, for them, "men who love men") are stereotypical and often negative (or at least, have negative connotations in a world that devalues femininity). And they have a very right-on view towards Christian treatments of homosexuality (discrediting the ex-gay movement, for example). And yet, the whole thing sounds like a macho Christian guy's attempt to make his homosexuality palatable with his church and his macho buddies.

I wouldn't have a problem with g0ys if they were what they proposed to be- anal-disliking masculine guys who like guys. But they're much more than that- what amounts to a cult that believes itself morally superior by separating itself from and then belittling and demonizing homosexuality. The only thing that gives me some comfort is that I still have faith in the general intelligence of women. Don't let me down, lesbians. If I find out there's a new "leZbian" subculture of girls who don't eat pussy, there WILL be hell to pay, ya'll.


Anonymous said...

You realize that there are Dykes who do not eat pussy at all right?

There are a lot of lesbians who simply do not give oral sex at all and who don't want to get it either or 69.

Gwen said...

Anonymous- oh yes, I realize that, and I'm perfectly fine with it, just as I'd be fine with g0ys if they were simply dudes who didn't like anal.

I was trying to make a point that I'll be sorely disappointed if there is some group of women who love women and who don't eat pussy out of principle, because they think it's "deviant" or against the Bible or whatever.

I've got all the respect in the world for people's personal preferences in regards to sex acts and what they do and don't do. I have zero respect for people who are opposed on principle to certain sexual acts- like the g0ys or the fictional leZbians who refuse to eat pussy.

Sorry that didn't come across in my attempt at humor. *eek!*

Anonymous said...

While I do agree with you that many 'g0y' cites out there do have a lot of rediculous views on 'gays', I just want to comment that not all g0ys are as extreme homophobes as you mention in this blog. Just as not all straight people are homophobic. Is it so hard to believe that there can be a group of men who are into men that simply are not into anal sex or other stereotypical things that come with 'gay culture'? That is the biggest reason many g0ys don't identify themselves as gay. Its not to deny their homosexual tendencies, its to avoid this widely popular misconception that all gays practice anal sex and other things that can go along with what most people assume being gay entails. Why put a label on yourself if what you believe in and do has nothing to do with what is widely believed of that label?

Gwen said...

Anonymous- I understand what you're saying . . . certainly not all g0y-identified men are homophobic, and like I said, I think that the very existence of the g0y movement, and its popularity, shows that there is a need for more nuance in regards to sexuality.

But I wish that the main website for g0ys, the first search result Google delivers and most people use to learn about it, wasn't full of all of that homophobia I described. It makes it hard for me to sympathize with the g0y movement or guys drawn to it when nobody seems to be stepping up to repudiate the more offensive parts of what they have to say.

I'm still fascinated by the g0y movement, though. It's just that my issues with the more negative aspects of it continue to bug the shit out of me.