I remember in middle school and high school, the worst thing they could accuse you of was being ‘queer’ and the kids were merciless in the bullying if they felt you were weak, sensitive, nerdy or outside the cool kids’ clique. Even your friends were paralyzed in fear of being labeled that way.
The stigma was so severe that I am sure it kept people deep in the closet, petrified to speak out.
Today, we have left the Cro-Magnon period behind and people are able to marry and be themselves in a way that no one could have predicted as they watched 16 Candles back in the 80s.
Now, Trans people are dealing with a lot of ignorance as well as even the differently-abled… such as kids with autism… the more things change, the more hatred finds its way into society through cracks and crevices in our everyday lives.
Political partisanship dehumanizes the “enemy”… and unabashedly so, full of irrational hate and nonsensical behaviors that drive tribalism and fears of becoming a member of the “out-group”… fear of excommunication and all manner of exclusion… bigotry and herd mentality that keep folks from climbing out of the crab barrel they are drowning in.
Which brings us to the new “queer” fear mechanism by which they play on the old fears and red scares of communism and socialism.
The White House released a bazillion page report lambasting socialism… comparing Bernie Sanders to Mao of China and other moronic non-sequiturs. This is the age of disinformation to be sure, but this is playing on that peer pressure… that pressure that says “what, are you gay?” Socialism is seen as weak and they associate homosexuality with weakness. They use this shutdown argument, lacking all merit, and seek to scare people from meeting their own needs by casting that fear… that judgment… that excommunication… what are you gay? Are you a Socialist? Are you a communist?
As if any of that is even meaningful or remotely descriptive… these fear-based, proximal allusions to homosexuality and weakness keep all the conservatives and uneducated people… persons ill-equipped to deal with otherness… petrified of even learning the truth of a Social Democracy or a Democratic Socialist society… the idea of an actual Communist or Socialist… or even an Eco-Socialist country is a problem for some far off generation… today… wanting a New Deal 2.0 can leave you marked as a communist (GAY!!) or a Socialist (QUEER!!!) And the hate and propaganda just keeps happening… boldly… from the White House.
I am grateful that sexuality is less taboo than it used to be, but to be fair, the socialist/communist tag is just the same exact thing and it deprives the people of a life more abundant and must be shouted down and defeated for all of our well beings.
Homosexuality is not a sign of weakness any more than advocating for Free College, Green Energy, A National Healthcare Service as well as a Federal Job Guarantee.
Yet here we are… as the White House carts these old red scare strawmen up to get the legislation shut down before it even gets debated…
Yes… that is a shame that will end up killing many until we overturn it as well.