Thursday, February 25, 2010

I'm Sick Of People Saying I Can't Use My 70's Version Of Gay. Words.



On Twitter the other day I tweeted something like, "I can't believe I'm watching American Idol again. Why am I so gay?"

And someone chimed in that I shouldn't use a phrase that's "so offensive". I think the guy was gay but I'm not sure.

Really?

I've been using the word gay since the 70's and I'm not stopping. The way I'm using it is not saying that I have hatred against gays. The meaning of gay that I'm using has been around before anyone was even out of the closet. So if you ask me, it's MY word and the gays need another word for themselves. Give me a break.

What about when gays make fun of someone that isn't gay that has a terrible sense of fashion? Is THAT hateful gays? Hmmm? Some of the funniest people I've met are gay but there are a group of gays that take offense to everything.

I have very little hate in me for any group. None really. I just like making fun of people. Anyone. Including myself. So when you can say you NEVER make fun of any group or person, that's when you can get on my case for using the word gay.

If you think about it, anything you say can be taken as being mean. And you know what? I don't care. And I'm tired of every word, phrase and expression being analyzed.

That's the end of my rant. (I've had a few too many Victory Beers)

58 comments:

Sophie said...

Excellent points. I use the word gay often!

Chris said...

That's one of the reasons I like That Blue Yak AND South Park. Both make fun of EVERYONE so get your panties out of yer crack folks.

This post was so gay.

Blog Stalker said...

This post was so 'gay'! Just kidding, I for one echo your sentiments completely!

Have a great day!

Peggy said...

You Go Girl!

JenJen said...

here here zibbsybaby.

Chemgeek said...

"I've had a few too many Victory Beers"

That is so NOT gay

Scope said...

How did the guy know you didn't mean you were exhuberent and happy? I think HE was the one being judgemental.

I remember a few years ago, there was a big flap because someone used the term "niggardly" (which has nothing to do with skin color, look it up).

Some people just need the thinest excuse to feel offended.

T-Ro said...

Not sure but I think you gotta be gay in order to be offended by the word gay.
I've met some funny gay people too. At least, I think they were gay cuz they talked a lot with their hands. Come to think of it, I think they were deaf, not gay... but it was sooooo funny.

Gwen said...

I was too lazy to read all your words. There were so many! But anyway, did you say you think Words Words Words is gay?

words...words...words... said...

Bravo. I use "gay" too, and I don't think there's anything wrong with it. If anyone can draw a parallel between "homosexual" and this usage of "gay", I'll be happy to stop immediately. But lots of words have multiple unrelated definitions. It's only an issue because this usage of "gay" is negative. It's EXACTLY the same as if a black person were to get upset over someone talking about the "black arts". Ridiculous.

Oh, and I'm totally not gay. You can ask Gwen ;)

John Young said...

I think the real enemy here isn't people who ARE actually bothered by things, but people who AREN'T bothered by things BUT PRETEND TO BE BOTHERED BY THINGS IN ORDER TO SCORE A POINT. They're ruining it for everyone.

diane said...

You'll never be able to stop some people from taking offense. How was that beer? Good luck shoveling today with that hangover. xo d

Kate said...

I'm glad I'm not alone in my usage of the word "gay."
I use it all the time! And just the other day, I got all paranoid when I used it in the way we all use it, and I had to cover my ass by telling the people I was talking to that I LOVED Freddie Mercury from Queen. How's that for gay?

You Go Girl Friend!

JMUmonty said...

This entry is sort of gay.

Kristen said...

I use the words gay and retarded more than I should, but I am gay and retarded so I feel that makes it okay.

Dr Zibbs said...

Gwen you always make me laugh.

Former Fat Chick said...

we-tahd

Dr Zibbs said...

Former Fat - what does that mean?

John Young said...

I'll offer the other point of view.

I've been thinking about what "words, words, words" said above. I agree that it might be a generational thing. I don't know for sure what "gay" means for folks in their teens and twenties, but for folks who grew up in the seventies like me, there's absolutely NO question that "gay" meant "faggoty", as in "faggoty faggots having buttsex, mincing around in heels with lisping accents."

It wasn't until I grew up and moved from WC to NYC that I learned that THAT IS NOT WHAT ACTUAL GAY PEOPLE ARE LIKE, ANYHOW. It's just, like, an imaginary gay-monster that ignorant straights use as a straw man.

To be blunt, anytime anyone my age or older says "gay" or "the gays", it makes me feel like I'm having an uncomfortable conversation with the creepy, bearded neighbor from next door who starts complaining about "THE DAMN NIGGERS." A lot, less in degree, sure, but the same kind of thing. "Oh, but I love THE GAYS." Yeah, sure you do, buddy. You're a regular pride march over there.

When someone my age says "that's gay", it does *not* give rise to a feeling of, like, righteous indignation within me, or make me want to make the world safe for gay people, or make me want to TEACH YOU A LESSON.

It just makes me feel like you are being kind of a jerk.

Eric Lewis said...

So who exactly named Gay Street?

words...words...words... said...

John's point taken, but I am 39 years old and in the 70s when we used "gay" as a mild childhood insult, it had nothing to do with homosexuality. We didn't even have a real understanding of our own sexuality, let alone that of others.

Did the way we used "gay" originate with people who were being insulting to homosexuals? Perhaps. But by the time it got through enough permutations to get to the usage Dr. Zibbs is speaking of, any connection was long divorced.

As an example, the word "fag" means cigarette. Does that stop people from snickering when it is used? No. But that doesn't have any bearing on the intent.

Dr Zibbs said...

John Young - I disagree. I think there is nothing hateful or jerky (in most cases) in saying "That's really gay".

I think the country as a whole is way to overly sensitive. Kind of "gay" if you will.

words...words...words... said...

Good point, Zibbs. We have people like Abraham Foxman whose entire job is to find things to be offended by. As a nation we're becoming more whiny and...dare I say it? Sissified.

Chelle said...

Now tell us what you think about the word "retarded" as an adjective for everything.

Dr Zibbs said...

Words, Words Words - you are very wise. That's exactly how I feel but you have a better way of saying it because my brain feels funny.

And I will also note that I still use the word "greasers" and on occasion will refer to a hot chick a "fox". I do it half in fun because they're words I grew up with and they're just funny to say.

JezebelTheGreat said...

I'm a proud bisexual and I use the term "that's gay" ALL THE TIME.

The funniest part about it is when straight people actually tell ME that I'm insulting THEM by using it.

Stop being so uptight, people. Honestly.

Dr Zibbs said...

..Chelle - The word retarded doesn't really bother me that much but I can see how it would bother people that have a family member that is retarded so I don't say it in public.

I only say it in my own home when I'm sure there are no retarded people around. You know, after I check under the bed and in places where I keep baking supplies.

nicoleva said...

Well you know what chaps my bottom... when someone says 'you throw like a girl'... or 'don't be such a skirt'.

Everyone is a target... but wait...

Seems to me the only free from ridicule group is average weight, straight, white guys... maybe we need a term for them? ;)

Dr Zibbs said...

Nicoleva - you don't think straight white men are a target? They're one of the few targets that everyone is fine making fun of. Just watch any sitcom. They're portrayed as greedy, hateful and bumbling.

If it's not the white corporate boss that is a jerk, it's the Dad that has no idea how to change a diaper or make dinner.

Dr Zibbs said...

..the other group that is attacked without backlash are Catholics.

nicoleva said...

I'll give you that... he's always an idiot but somehow he's always married to a wife 10x hotter than him.

Carnie said...

I love Kristen's response so maybe I'm gay. I also don't say retard in public, only at home. I find both to be very effective adjectives when dealing with those in my household.

Anonymous said...

This is gay!

John Young said...

Many of these comments are perfectly fair -- when people use a word, they can MEAN it in all sorts of ways. I get that.

From my point of view, I'd like the freedom to be able to say "you know what? that word pisses me off, and I have a negative reaction to it" without getting shouted down by all sorts of folks saying "OMG POLITICALLY CORRECT ASSHOLE, where is our country headed?"

I completely agree that people who PRETEND to be offended should shut the fuck up. And I further agree that people who try to zing other people over what words they 'should' use are jerks.

However, I'm trying to reclaim some freedom on the other side, too -- the freedom to actually have, and actually share, an honest, human reaction without censoring myself because lots of eye-rollers will say "OMG PC POLICE!"

A and B said...

For real though...American Idol is pretty gay.

~A

words...words...words... said...

John, what you said there is perfectly fair. You can be offended at whatever you choose. But your earlier comment had a distinct tone of admonishment in addition to explaining your personal feelings. I can be offended if people choose to wear short skirts, but that doesn't mean I'm entitled to tell them to stop.

Dr Zibbs said...

John Young - I know. I see what you're saying. I'd love to discuss it more over a beer but I'm afraid if I invite you it might come off as a bit "faggy" on my part.

Chelle said...

I've been actively trying to stop saying retarded unless addressing my ex husband. I'm not 100% sure what to do though. Its the perfect word for him and yet its insulting to handicapped folks to be compared to such a retard.

I don't know what to do.

Gage said...

I use gay in "the 80's way" all the time. I have to wonder... why does it matter what people mean by the words they say anyway? Who cares? I don't. It's just a bunch of sounds put together. And what... if someone doesn't SAY a word, then they don't still feel a certain way? That's retarded. Oops... that's another one of those words...

Son of a Thomas said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Son of a Thomas said...

All words are in play. Just be ready for the response even if one finds it to be "cry babyish".
The Flip/Side
One maybe sensitive for a reason but it doesn't mean one has to give a damn and it doesn't mean one dosen't give a damn. And it also doesn't mean one is a bad person for not having your sensitivity.
You gay, nancyboy, niggardly, retard.

John Young said...

I completely agree with Son of a Thomas, and heartily endorse his position of "you take responsibility for saying whatever words you feel like using, and I'll take responsibility for you thinking I'm overly sensitive if I say something about not liking the words you used!" :)

I'd love to leave this conversation on a positive note, so I'll paste in the most useful thing I ever saw on straight/gay etiquette, from Miss Manners:

Dear Miss Manners: What should I say when I am introduced to a homosexual "couple?"
Gentle Reader: "How do you do?" "How do you do?"

Andrew Rodriguez said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Andrew Rodriguez said...

May I say I've enjoyed reading everyone's thoughts in this subject as it's been very insightful vis a vis acceptable social interactions in the United States at the dawn of the 21st Century. May I also say I am not going to touch this one with a 10 foot pole? (And I mean the long piece of pipe, not an exceptionally tall person of Polish heritage) (Sheesh there's no pleasing some people!)

Dr Zibbs said...

Andrew - I appreciate the comment but this blog is now Cuban free.

Naaaa.

Andrew Rodriguez said...

Now ya see, there's another group where it seems like it's open season. Cubans. We in this country are either the brown spanish speaking people who took over Miami and won't speak English as depicted on the right or we are white, bitter wealthy land and business owners who were opressing the poor in Cuba until Fidel, Che and the gang kicked us out as depicted on the left in this Country...Which is it already?!

Captain Mystery said...

I am thinking of starting a "gay rights" movement, but not one about sexual orientation. It would be about being able to use the word "gay" as we used to without people taking offense.

Dr Zibbs said...

Andrew- the worst would be if while you were saying that someone said, "What's that dude talking about?"

"Who? The Puerto Rican guy?"

"Yeah him"

Dr Zibbs said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Twisted Susan said...

Oy!

diane said...

zibbsy, you opened up the gayest can of worms ever. You are such a retard.

he he

Dominica said...

We use that word too ! For ages !!
Even India (and she's only 12) used it too.

Me on the phone calling her : India, I'm sending you a MMS via my phone so you can see if you like those purple/snake print trousers...
She : Oh don't bother mom, snakeprint skinnies are so gay ...

LOL
I love teenagers and the way their mind works ..
XX

Freedom of speech - Hell Yeah !

sybil law said...

Yep - used that word since the early 80's. Who, exactly, decides it's wrong to use certain words? I mean, fuck shit damn piss bitch ass... they're all just words, and it seems to me that when you say they're "bad" words to use, that makes them infinitely more exciting, or tempting.
People just need to lighten the fuck up.

Dr Zibbs said...

Diane - I did didn't I?

madtexter ☺☺☺☺☺☺ (corey james) said...

Kudos to you for being open and honest about how you feel. I'm can be a big ol' queen sometimes, and do take offense at homophobia from others, but what I detest more is people who are so overly politically correct to the point they censor themselves.

I take no offense at your use of the word 'gay' as long as the intent is not hatred or that you feel being gay is a bad thing. I think we have to consider the source when it comes to the use of certain words.

However, I have to admit using the word 'gay' to describe something weird or strange is a bit offensive. It's almost as if you're saying being a gay person is offensive. A negative. In that circumstance saying 'that's so queer' is better. Because queer does mean irregular...and I would NEVER use the word queer to describe myself.

The fact that many gay people have embraced the word 'queer' to describe themselves makes me furious. It's like saying I'm a fluke of nature and that I shouldn't be here.

Anyway, big hug to you. I think you're great!

Dr Zibbs said...

Madtexter - good points. Thanks.

J. Hi said...

Zibsy--I like it when you rant. It's sexy. You should do it more often. You just brought sexy back.

The only group I hate are people who wear argyle.

I use gay in that way too. ;)

Dr Zibbs said...

Oooh J-Hi - sexy eehh?