This post has got nothing to do with books and still I am writing it. Because I can write beyond books and this time I want to write about how insensitively people behave sometimes towards things that are beyond their comprehension. Case in point: Homosexuality.
It still remains to be the elephant in the room and a huge one at that. I am sick and tired of people claiming and stating that they “understand” but they never will. May be because they have not gone through this. May be because it is still all fun and games for them. May be because they will never understand what it feels like to almost be disowned by your parents. I do not expect them to understand. I take a step ahead and say this on behalf of the community, “We do not expect them to understand”. However, leave it at that. Do not try and mock what you do not get.
Yes I am angry, because I do not seem to understand where “sensitivity” goes when it comes down to this topic in our country? I do not understand it and I never will till things change. Just as we do not stereotype against all straight people basis a few men or women, it gives you no right to stereotype us basis what Indian film or television portrays. This is just not fair. And yes I will talk about being fair, because I am angry. It is about time that we show our anger. This isn’t a rant. I am trying to understand. While you try to “accept” us, would you accept your child if he or she turns around one fine day and tells you that they were gay? You may say yes, but I doubt you will.
At any point of time, I do not want to be tolerated by straight people. That is never the intention. Also please understand that there is to me than just my sexual orientation. A girl is “safe” with a gay man. A gay man needs a hag. A straight man is uncomfortable hugging a gay man. I am for one tired of generalization and will say it out loud. My sexual orientation is a part of me. It isn’t me.
The need to keep saying this only occurs because you do not seem to understand it. A limp wrist or the swaying of the hips is just alright. You in your alpha-male avatar cannot mock it, because we do not mock your rituals of “male bonding” or the way you behave in public. It is sad that women think we are like them. You know what? We have a penis and a pair of balls and we know how to use them. We have a mind and we express. Yes, may be like all men, we are overtly sexual, but who isn’t? To drift to another topic: Gay men will not sleep with any straight man. They will not hit on any random straight man. So “straight men”, please do not think we are vying for your attention and hoping to get into your pants at every given opportunity. Look at yourself in the mirror and then we shall talk.
Why the anger you might ask? Why the blabbering (if this is what it is to you)? Why the defensiveness? Why not, I ask? Why is everything “gay” feminine for you? Who in fuck’s name decided that? So we like sportsmen more than we like the sport. So what? My outrage is toward the “mocking”. I am done with that. For all the education and so called intelligence from any business school, you still have not learnt the art of empathy. I do not want you to walk alongside me, but do not walk on the opposite side of the road and mock my choices. That I will not “tolerate”.
The use of language is another thing. Yes, to me, “faggot” is offensive. And yes to me, “gudwa” (slang in Hindi for effeminate) is majorly offensive. Yes we have reclaimed words. Want to know why? Because you keep using them a lot. It is the likes of your intelligence that surprises me. You have probably seen more of the world than I have and yet you do not know how to relate to something different than your perception and you never will.
If someone in the Indian Film Industry breaks the mold and makes a film with two gay characters, I will only hoot for that. So what if Karan Johar has made films which are of bubblegum nature? This could well be a step. He reaches out. I am happy. Also, he doesn’t need to come out for anyone but himself. This goes out to all of those people who do not want to come out. It is alright. You do not owe anyone anything. Those are your choices and should be that way. At the same time, there will always be detractors.
I am also done with bullies in school. You want to know why we are so assertive about our orientation? Because being bullied at school is no fun. Being taken to a psychiatrist when you have just come out to your family feels like being discarded. When you know that had you been born physically challenged your family would have loved you more and understood, than being born a gay man. Sitting in a theatre and suddenly on screen you see two men kiss (which was coming) and half the theatre is either mocking or jeering is no fun. I am done with this behavior.
I do not care about the ratio. If you feel you are liberal, then may be another voice will only help us. I am not an activist for the world, but I am for myself and when my dignity is hurt, I will speak. And also let me tell you something else, homosexuality is not all about wanting to get into another man’s pants. There is more to that. There is life. Celebration. Joy. Living. Just like you. Only with an open mind. Only with the most amazing sensitivity and creativity. Knowing that it takes all kinds of people to make this world. Knowing that we let people be and want the same. If you do not want to interact with the “likes” of us, that is understandable, but please do not judge or say something which offends. Because as far as I know, you would not like it if the same were to happen to you.
It is sad that one has to write this because one is angry. It is sad that some will get it and some will treat it as just another rant. I do not care anyway. I had to say what I had to. I have made my peace with letting it out there. Things might change. Things might not. Who knows? But I will still walk on the road with a spring in my step and yes, I might also sway my hips.