Stereotyping In The Gay Community
The very thing that we’re so against – has it become a part of us now? The thought of the judged becoming the judgers rubs me the wrong way. You hear it all the time: Twinks, Bears, Cubs, Jocks, Queens– it’s a rainbow of labels that can build resentment. Will it start to affect the unity we are trying to portray to the world? How can we expect level-headed understanding when we can’t lead by example?
We know that judging people is wrong, but why do we do it? Because we’re men! A strange species, we are. For thousands of years, our mentality has been one of togetherness. Even when we were cavemen, hunting and gathering, we were pack people. Groups, companions, alliances, it’s in our biology – and as the centuries of body hair faded away, we started to see each other’s six packs and began the ultimate judgmental comparisons of whose is better… that’s my theory at least.
We’re visual. We see something and instantly create a fact, leaving opinions out of the equation. Adding to that idea, when you have a community of all gay men, it can be nearly impossible to have a shot at being looked at fairly. Instantly, the first thing we ask ourselves when we see each other is, “Are they attractive?” or “What do they look like naked?” or “I wonder what position they prefer?”
Top. Bottom. Versatile. Total Bottom. Total Top. There’s a judgment with every one of these terms that can either excite us or turn us off – and in some cases, create a negative perception towards that person. Sex is always on our minds, and it’s often the main source of judgmental assessments on others. If you can’t imagine sleeping with them, they aren’t as important. The result is the creation of sub-communities.
No other community has such divides. It’s interesting to think about where we came from. Forty years ago, there was a sense of togetherness – individuals united by discrimination from the world. Today it seems like we’ve veered a bit off track from what we had been fighting for.
Perhaps it might be time to start coming together again. It could give hope to in-the-closet teens that don’t feel accepted in the gay community. Do me a favor… look in the mirror – stop fixing your hair – okay, now look deeper. Are you really practicing what we preach?
Here’s my thought for the day: Leave the judging to Judge Judy