Sometimes, we can get really hung up in the nuance of our representation in the media. We don’t like this kind of visibility. We don’t like that kind of visibility. Why did they have the gay characters do that? Why can’t they have the gay characters do this? But sometimes, just sometimes, it’s good to remind ourselves that for all of our healthy debate and civil disagreement about how we would like the LGBT community shown in the media, there are still people out there who would rather we not be seen at all. Folks like the American Family Association and their “news” site OneNewsNow.com.
Last week, the conservative Christian site ran an online poll in response to a recent study by a demographer with Williams Institute on Sexual Orientation Law and Public Policy in Los Angeles that estimated there were 4 million U.S. adults over the age of 18 identify as gay or lesbian, representing 1.7 percent of the population. He estimated that another 1.8 percent of the population identified as bisexual and about 8 percent had engaged in sex with a partner of the same gender. Oh, college. Of course, the researcher himself admitted that the numbers were a “best guess,” derived from five studies that asked participants about their sexual orientation. And the percentage is much lower from the established 10 percent figure that acclaimed sex researcher Alfred Kinsey gave in the 1940s.
This is, of course, a lot of set-up for a simple online poll. But I think you’ll understand once you see the poll itself, and more specifically its option choices. Are you ready? You might want to finish swallowing any beverages beforehand. I don’t want to be responsible for computer screen damage the world over. The poll asked: “What’s the major factor that allows homosexuals — a tiny fraction of the whole population — to dictate major changes in cultural morality?”
Oh, whew. Have you stopped laughing yet? Each choice is more ludicrous until you get to the last one and then, well, we’ve crossed over into a whole other stratosphere of absurdity. I don’t know whether to be furious or thank them for the amazing ab workout from cracking up that hard.
Though, what I really want to do is break down each choice, because the most important part of any voting situation is making an informed decision. Shall we begin?
Choice 1: “Money”
Yes, American Family Association, you are 100 percent correct. Every gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and questioning person is rich. Filthy, ridiculously, ecstatically rich. It’s because of all the rainbows. We all got that pot of gold at the end of the rainbow, and a toaster oven. It really helps with recruiting.
Choice 2: “Half Truths”
Now the good thing about half truths is that half of them are still true. So the question then become which half? Is it the half where we tell you we’re born this way and our sexual orientation isn’t a choice? Or is it the part where the sassy sales clerk at the Gap tells you your ass looks great in those jeans? Only one of those statements is true. Pssst, it’s not the thing about your ass.
Choice 3: “Intimidation”
Yes, of course, intimidation. The gays and lesbians are just such renowned bullies. Oh, wait, sorry. I read that wrong way. Gays and lesbians are renowned for being bullied. We’ve been so bullied that a national grassroots campaign was launched last year to combat an epidemic of gay teen suicides. It was so bad that gays and straights, and even the President of the United States, spoke out en masse to address young people everywhere and let them know It Gets Better.
Choice 4: “Satan is on their side”
Well, clearly, that’s just true. Haven’t you all watched South Park? Satan’s gay, hello. Also he’s in love with Saddam Hussein. And Saddam supported terrorism. And Saddam loved Satan. And Satan is on our side. Ergo, all gays are terrorists. And, as we all know, we can’t let the terrorists win. Man, am I glad we cleared that up. Now I can’t wait for Pride this summer when I can finally openly rock my “Satan is my Homeboy” T-shirt.
Well, I hope that was edifying for those who might have been unsure as to how to vote. The poll actually closed on Friday, so this is all actually moot (and not the cow’s opinion kind, though perhaps the horse’s ass kind instead). So who won?
Admit it, you were totally rooting for Satan to win. Sometimes you have to laugh to keep from crying, or headdesking your noggin into a bloody pulp.