Between this and the upcoming play that I’ve written and produced, “The People’s Republic of Edward Snowden,” the likelihood that I’ll be welcomed in Russia any time soon is rather remote. That’s all right though. I hear the Chinese are still a bit pissed at my loud and vocal disappointments over their little massacre in Tiananmen Square back in 1989. Not like I was jumping on a plane tomorrow, so whatever. For that matter, after this, I probably won’t be welcome in many fundamentalist-leaning parts of this country. Have I ever told you how much there is to do in the City of Chicago? It’s almost bottomless with cultural diversity, as long as you don’t mind block-to-block segregation, and huge swaths of the city (usually more melanin deficient areas) neglected to the point of post-apocalyptic nightmare scenarios, but I digress.
It’s just that, at Revolution & Beer, we take hypocrisy and right-wing extremism very seriously. That said, Vladimir Putin serves these ingredients to the world with a fresh out-of-the-wok Yakisoba that would make Yoshihiro Murata nervously start sharpening his knives. But recently he’s done us all one better in the great human leap backwards.
While homophobia is nothing new in the history of power-hungry macho patriarchs hell-bent on intruding into people’s private lives when they disagree with them, the full frontal assault against homosexuals sounds yet another warning siren that too many of our species enjoy moon-walking on human rights and true liberty. Yes, the LGBTQ community is fighting the fight full-on now, but we all risk damage if we don’t “stand our ground.” How does that make your individualist streak feel? Doesn’t affect you? Well, first they came for…
Reeking Off Your Shirt
Question: does anyone see the really twisted logic in someone who professes himself as straight persecuting a band called Pussy Riot? The heter-over-confidence spews forth with all the questioning of a high school freshman’s first locker room shower experience. I mean, after all, it’s not like it was an actual riot that had to be put-down with hoses. And, from a sexually non-repressed perspective, would it be so bad if they actually did riot? Even a little? And, from a sex-positive perspective: what’s supposed to be liberatory or fun about extinguishing such a thing?
What should we make of this manly man who promotes himself as a progressive alpha male. Surely you’ve been seduced by the display of studly (homo-erotic?) topless photos of his excellency fishing, hunting, and engaging in the very non-gay activity of riding horses bareback shirtless in an Indiana Jones hat, dribbling-out laws and programs denying the simplest human rights for homosexuals in Russia. And in all seriousness, this issue is a test for the sincerity of the human race’s so-called declarations and pretense at human rights; and progress.
On the show some weeks ago we discussed women’s rights, and how they cannot be judged episodically. That is to say that the fact that Maggie in accounting gets a big raise or a promotion, or can vote and drive a car in St. Louis, isn’t evidence that sexism has ended. Does she have autonomy over her own body, or can the state intercede? More importantly, those rights must be judged amid the totality of the quality of rights the world over. The greatest of rights in one part of the world are degraded by the lack of rights elsewhere.
WOW!! Did you hear there are now annual Gay Pride Parades in cities across America?!
Yes, but we’re still dealing with nominal acceptance in much of the country, and significant acrimony from the Right-wing community about something that they have the full liberty not to engage in. This regardless of the fact that homosexual relationships are comparable in outcome to heterosexual ones, and that homosexuals contribute just as much if not more to growth and creativity within the U.S. economy. The far right evidently believes that co-existence, or allowing it, means willful participation. They’re just afraid we’re all going to turn gay. They really care that much.
While it is no longer a crime to be gay, or won’t any longer lead to a court martial or dismissal from the military, the reality of gay marriage being legal in several states still feels tentative. The culture still pretends anything not aligned with a strict bipolar sexuality is deviant, or is nominally tolerated. That carries a social sort of oppression on truly arbitrary and interchangeable terms that is far more potent and dangerous, and antithetical to liberty than any government could conceive on its own. When the government tacitly or overtly supports or encourages discrimination or worse, there should be an outcry from all people of conscience or humanity.
For anyone, this video of these Russian kids being harassed, tortured, and terrorized for their supposed sexuality should be an outrage.
Not only are these kids tormented and scarred far worse than any personal pejorative of “gayness” could ever accomplish, but these savages delight so much in their terrorism; reminiscent of images of German soldiers delighting as they teased and taunted Jews during the Holocaust. You could never accuse Nazi wannabes of being inconsistent in their tactics. Long live Neo-Fascism! :p
The true danger here is in becoming subjective about humanity and the humanity of others. Human rights must remain human rights without qualification, and the standard must be to hold oppressors accountable. It is Putin’s discriminatory laws and attitudes regarding homosexuals that threaten to make everyone’s rights ultimately negotiable. Perhaps we should deem his approach a “Penis Riot,” but that one has been raging for centuries.