August 20, 2013

I'm Not "Gay"

Part Two:

Being a Mormon and being gay is hard. There is an instant disconnect from the church family that I feel. I'm not a "real" Mormon. That feeling of not belonging can be quite lonesome. There is an instant disconnect from the gay community that I feel. I'm not a "real" gay. That feeling of not belonging can be quite lonesome. Where does this leave me?
Part One

It took me a while to find a photo without underwear
or overt sexual displays. Sad.
If feeling disconnected from the Mormon world was apparent, it holds nothing to the disconnect I feel from the gay world. I am gay, but I am not "gay". By saying I am not gay I am not referring to a flamboyant personality or having a loving fashion, its deeper than that.

I have, for the longest time, felt an annoyance with the gay movement. It's deep philosophical and ideological affair with liberalism and its ever present "look at me" ego. I understand that to gain equality there needs to be a movement and a discussion which requires a spotlight, but the gay community seeks much more than that. 

The politics of most gays plop in the middle of liberalism — which I abhor. The snarky comments about closet republicans and the out right ignorant comments made to conservatives are just as stupid and bigoted as the radical religious right's comments to the gays. I move more and more everyday to the libertarian side of the political cube. But it is the biased and uniformed views of a majority of the gay groups that drive me and my political beliefs to a place of isolation. I have said to myself many a times, "It gets better", but not referring to the pressures of being gay, but to the pressures of those gays who are angry with me because of my political beliefs. 

I choose to distance myself from gay pride celebrations. With all that it is suppose to represent gay pride is merely a celebration with its underwear wearing sex filled air. I know there are groups and people at pride celebrating their freedom to be who they are, and for them I garner only the deepest respect. But when the totality of pride is out weighed the sexual overtness I can't help but want nothing to do with it. For a movement that wishes to be seen and accepted as everyone else, we sure love to prance around in skimpy underwear and flaunt sex in public like none other. 

Let's have a gay pride celebration. But let do it sans the underwear wearing filled floats, minus the porn star booths, and without championing everything pointless and unfruitful. Let's make it something worthwhile. 

I really did not mean to turn this post into a rant. I really have other issues with the gay community that stand a more respectable discussion, but theres to much I have to deal with first before I have any desire to associate myself with the gay community at large.


  1. Um, woah. So, first of all, where are you going to pride with porn star booths? I mean, in my city, the parade is mostly local politicians, community organizations, churches, workplaces, and sports teams. I mean, don't get me wrong, there are all sorts (and fewer shirts than one usually sees), but it's not that far off from a Fourth of July parade with beads and drag queens.

    Second, have you considered that straight people also love to prance around in skimpy underwear and flaunt there sexuality as well? Mardi Gras? Sexy halloween costumes? There really aren't a lot of occasions where you won't see young straight people (often women, since men notice) being overtly sexual. Maybe not in the Mormon world, but elsewhere, for sure.

    What would make Pride worthwhile? I mean, in addition to the parade, there's typically a festival, where community organizations try to get people involved. I signed up for a ski group this year. And really, Pride is in part just a nice summer weekend to spend outside with friends. It's like, is Memorial Day not worthwhile because people have barbecues?

    Sorry, I don't mean to counter-rant, because it's definitely fair for you to say that you're not a fan of pride parades and had some bad run-ins with self-righteous liberal gay guys, but at the same time, if I have dinner with a conservative gay friend at a restaurant this weekend, and we talk about our lives and what's going on with out mutual friends, are we actively taking part in gay community? Because I feel like we are even though there are a range of political perspectives and no guys in underwear or rainbow flags in sight. Was I only half in the gay community since I went to the parade with another conservative friend this year? Were my straight liberal friends who came to the parade fully involved in the gay community?

    I just feel like you're taking a deliberately narrow view of what being involved in the gay community is about so you can set yourself apart from it. Isn't this blog a part of the gay community? I definitely see it that way.

  2. @Evan- As for the Halloween and Mardi Gras, these are national holidays not celebrating or drawing attention to a disenfranchised group of people. The comparison is not the same. Yes straights and gays love to prance around in underwear and be sexually overt on these holidays, but to compare to a Pride event is apples to oranges.

    I agree there are worthwhile booths at Pride, but the totality of the event is what I draw my rant towards. It would be interesting to do a study of the percentage of booths, and floats in the parades.

    To say Pride is just a nice weekend to spend with friends is forgetting the purpose of a Pride event. It is to draw attention, whether media or political attention, to the gay community and the inequality that still exits while celebrating the diversity of the community. Yes it's to get-together with friends, but its like saying a funeral is in part a time to wear your favorite black outfit. There is so much more to the event and its purpose.

    All of that is minor. There is an important thing to remember in my writing of these posts. When I wrote about the distance I feel from the Mormon community, it was as a whole, mainly at church, that I focused on my disconnectedness. I have many wonderful, uplifting and endearing interactions with individual Mormon's all of the time. But that wasn't the point of the post. I wanted to show a separation from the institution and shall we say, "time of gathering". So it is with the gay community. I have wonderful interactions one on one with gay guys all of the time, but at the institution and "time of gathering" where the institution of such a community comes to full focus, I feel a disconnect. I am comparing two similarly situated situations. I think that is an important distinction.

  3. I think I can relate to your "time of gathering" line of reasoning. I feel isolated at church and can't imagine enjoying myself at Pride at all. (But then, I'm new to all of this.) Hi, by the way. Great blog.

  4. Hi, my friend. I feel sad that I'm not with you at all times to "ask you to sit with me at lunch." (Even though you know the root of that comment, and probably know where I'm going with it, I'll explain.) I've known Trevor since high school and supposedly I was the first to ask him to sit with me at lunch, which relieved his biggest fear of sitting alone. I wish I was with you for this time in your life because I've been there, done that, and felt what you've felt. (I also grew up LDS, and then realized I was gay later in life.)
    Trev, I agree to a point. I really, really wish the Pride parade didn't have so many men in speedos, dancing on gigantic trucks. I wish that people who look like they walked out of an S & M magazine didn't flaunt their whips and spikes in front of the kids at the parade. I wish quite a few things about Pride, but at the same time, I've recently tried to look at it another way. I guess, like you mentioned, Pride is one of the few places people can celebrate the very thing that gets them shunned or even hurt elsewhere. The people who support gay rights and equality in general, whether they are gay, straight, transgender, or whatever, tend to be very unique people and need this parade as their escape. A lot of the stuff in the parade is stuff I myself am not happy about or comfortable with, but it's not just for me. (Who knew, right?) It's a parade for everyone who is "different." Perhaps it is a celebration that is supposed to actually make people feel uncomfortable; because sometimes, being forced out of your comfort zone is the only way to see new perspectives and grow.
    Anyway, I want you to know I can relate to you. I definitely don't consider myself LDS any more, but it is definitely rooted inside me in many ways. And some people would (perhaps jokingly) say I'm not a true gay because I still hold true to many of my Mormon standards, such as not drinking. (Not that all gay people drink, but from what I've seen, many times when one lets go of everything that molded them when they were growing up, they tend to latch on to anything directly opposing it. Like when giving up a religion that teaches to stay away from drugs and alcohol, in celebration of new-found independence, one would rush to the nearest liquor store. This is just a generalization.) I often feel like I don't fully fit in to either group, but then I feel better when I realize I don't need to fully fit in anywhere. I'm making my own path and I'm enjoying my individuality. You are too. You are Trevor HP - a loving, caring, funny, smart, talented man who happens to believe in the LDS gospel, happens to be very politically involved, and happens to be gay. None of those things define you though, they all just help shape you. And I like who you are. A lot of people do.
    Love you.

  5. @Graham - Thanks for reading. Glad you can relate!

    @Leamonhead - You're the greatest. That is all.