Thursday, March 21, 2013


On the opposite end of the homospectrum from The Thirteen Year Old Girl Trapped In A Male Body are the GayBros, men of homosexual orientation who are otherwise, well, regular men.

Despite the fact that I have lived a pretty post-modern life, I have no affection for PoMo as a philosophy or attitude. Stephen Hicks said all that needs to be said about itThe failure of epistemology made post-modernism possible; the failure of socialism made post-modernism necessary. It is simply the subversive epistemological strategy of the anti-Western Left. But one of its not-stupid insights is that phenomena assumed by rhetoric to be unitary are usually far more fragmentary.

Huh? An example. We speak of "homosexuality" as if it were One Thing, when, on close inspection, there is a good case to be made for speaking plurally of "homosexualities," as the PoMo's like to do. Obsessively. On one level, this is a banal observation, but like most banal observations, it can be helpful in the right situation.

Take G-Baby and the GayBros. Although the sexual behaviors they might engage in would likely be quite similar, I can't imagine that they would be experiencing these things in similar ways. They are both homosexual, but what leaps out at me, at least, are their differences, not their sameness.

I have come more and more to the conclusion that in the real world, homosexuality is not just about erotic attraction, sexual object orientation, but also about gender...well, here I have to digress.
I distinguish between gender identity and gender identification. People with gender identity issues come under the rubric of trans, the notion that you can have the body of one sex but disidentify so strongly with it that you think of yourself as belonging to the opposite sex. If the persistence of drag in gay life is any indication, this condition may also be situational and transitory. Gender identification has to do with which gender you find resonance and empathy with. You can be clear that you are a male, but still feel vastly more comfortable with the feminine than with the masculine. That is gender identification. In gender identity, you identify as; in gender identification, you identify not as, but with. It's a real but a fine distinction. In ordinary life, for men especially, identifying too much with the opposite sex will have other people identifying you as the opposite sex. This dynamic produces the primal gay wound, I suspect: rejected from the male tribe, being held in contempt by the very object of your love and desire.

The disastrous, but unfortunately logical inclusion of the T in what used to be "the gay community" indicates a psychological truth that I have both recognized and resisted: that along with sexual object attraction, opposite gender identification is --for most gays-- an equally basic issue. The ham-fisted and often gruesome activities of the reparative therapy crowd, like so many ham-fisted and gruesome activities, contains a kernel of truth. Their whole approach is based on getting gays to adapt to classical/typical gender roles. Basically, masculinizing them.

This, I suspect, replicates psychologically a mistake made by the physical sciences back in the day, when it was hoped that giving testosterone shots to homos would make them be attracted to girls. Well, of course all it did was make them attracted to more boys more often!

I can tell that I'm rambling. For now, all I want to say is that both sexual desire and gender identification are part of the homosexual soul's work. And a huge part of how the other 98% of the world reacts to us.

Having long admired Scott Wirth's contribution to Samesex Love and the Path to Wholeness, describing the circularity of homosexual male development, I should have been less resistant. But sometimes even Ex Cathedra's psyche gets in the way of his magisterial mind.

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