Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Not very straight!

The first time I heard about “Gays” I was sick to my stomach. I think I heard the term on TV. I couldn’t believe such people existed. Then came a plethora of articles and discussions about gays and their struggles to make the society comes to terms with their sexuality. After some time I reconciled that this “phenomenon’ was not going to go away, judging from the frequent newspapers reports in the foreign media. And I decided to face my squeamishness head on. I can never hate/loathe something just like that. And if I do, I do an analysis to find out why and usually end up with a whole new perspective to the situation.

From what I read about gays, there are a lot of factors that make them that way. I am not going into their genesis here but my acceptance and coming to terms with them. When I put myself in their shoes it suddenly became clear that it was absolutely not fair that these people should be ridiculed for doing what is “natural” for them, however unnatural it may be for us. I realized that I wouldn’t want someone pointing their fingers at me and saying “cheee she likes guys!! ugh”

And when I saw things from that perspective, I felt bad for them. I still haven’t gotten over the feeling of distaste, but then I sympathize with them, just the way I would sympathize with a star crossed straight couple.

Having said all that I must say that I hear with disquiet the accounts of several male friends and colleagues who have been propositioned by gay men. Then I read posts like this and this and many more that I forgot to bookmark...and I feel that if it doesn't stop then no one should blame the onset of homophobia, that is still unheard of in this country. And what is more disquieting is that there is no law on Earth in this country to protect you from gay sexual harassment!

I am not against gays, but the increasing unreported reports of gay people hitting on straight folks is alarming and should be condemned just like a straight guy sexually harassing a straight woman.

And if it is confusion about someones sexuality that is leading to these incidents, then we perhaps should have a differentiator so that such “accidents” do not happen.

17 comments:

anN-series said...

"but the increasing unreported reports of gay people hitting on straight folks is alarming and should be condemned just like a straight guy sexually harassing a straight woman"

can a gay guy 'hitting on' a straight guy be compared to men sexually harassing women..just hitting on someone...

Anonymous said...

What coincidence...just today the husband and I were discussing about gays harassing straight men, especially rampant in bangalore and bombay, and hubby had to endure one such on his recent trip to bombay. he said the same thing, he felt violated!! hmmm..at least now the guyz can realize what we women feel.

SJ

Apoorv Khatreja said...

Homosexuality

A nice opinion on the whole gay/lesbian culture springing up.

J said...

May god save us straight men from the gay wrath :P

And what's a pennu kaanal ??

silverine said...

Annseries: It could mean sexual molestation too. I have deliberately used a neutral tone here since I dont know much about the subject.

Anon: Men have begun to become silent sufferers like women. Like I asked a guy colleague the other day. "Why do you shut up and suffer?" He smiled at the irony of the question since it is the same question men used to ask women when they complained of harassment :)

apoorv: Thanks for the link. Will check it out :)

J: Correction...from the gay's "path" :p

mathew said...

What I fear more is young boys and girls who are subjected to such harassment..Atleast we have the freedom to react..or atleast we realise someone is harassing us..But for kids they may not realise that they are being harassed..And they remain silent sufferers which leaves a deep scar on their minds..I have hard from several people that there are perverts who sexually abuse kids in crowded buses where it is easy to get away...

I heard about gays from television..later came to know that there were actually people like that while i was in college..Although am still to come to terms or maybe talk freely with anyone gay, i think I ll have to accept that they are just like anyone else as a person with just a different orientation..

Jiby said...

the same instinct that makes men misbehave towards women happens here too. but what gays do pale in comparison to the indecent acts of heterosexuals because their natural tendency is abhorred by society and they find it harder to find their partner. i guess most of the time these bottled-up feelings make them lose their ability to behave rationally in public and they succumb to baser instincts. such "accidents" will come down when our society becomes inclusive.

Zennmaster said...

its an anarchist world out there... need to learn how to deal with it...

silverine said...

Mathew: In Blr last year a newspaper report did an expose on small kids who are the last to be dropped home in the private vans being sexually abused by the drivers! It is there everywhere and no debate or discussion is going on anywhere! Appalling!

Jiby: That makes sense!

zenmaster: We have to recognize and acknowledge the problem first, then only can we deal with it. But sadly we have this habit of brushing embarrassing things under the carpet. Kudos for that post!

Anonymous said...

What happened in Sodom Gommorrah will happen to societies that indulge in such sins. You cannot trust your conscience and never consider this evil as natural or orientation, becoz your conscience can be manipulated over a period of time.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sodom_and_Gomorrah

philip said...

ann-series: There is no doubt about the fact that women have to bear the brunt of sexual harassment. But that doesn't make it is equally revolting for men as it is for women.

silverine: Although you have clarified your point about why you used the term 'hitting on' and I understand it, I'd like to mention that using that term tends to trivialize it in the same way 'eve teasing' tends to trivialize sexual harassment of women.

Amey said...

Sexual harassment, whoever the players involved is bad. Maybe because of sheer percentages we hear more about man harassing woman more.

Although, being a gay person (or the acts involved) is criminal according to Indian Penal Code, so perhaps there is something legal for this.

silverine said...

Anon: Thats besides the point and topic we are discussing here.

Philip: Point taken. But I would still desist from strong language as the purpose of the post was to highlight a concern and I did not want this to become a gay bashing forum. See Anon comment above. You should have seen some of the comments I deleted :) Nasty!

Amey: You are right that sexual harassment is bad whether it is a man hitting on a woman on another man. But the Indian Penal Code doesn't have any provision for sexual harassment, only laws against such act! Which is stupid as the latter is a consensual act ( most of the time) while the former is not!!

Rockus said...

As a person who has been hit on, (rather hard I must say! Borderline molestation) I have to say its a very depressing situation. Evenmore when you are just around 16! After a while it was an insight to me. I had experienced something the women are subjected to and could understand how they felt.

People have the right to choose what they want to do with their lives. Its not about gays or straights...its rather about the bad people, no matter what their sexual orientation is...

silverine said...

rockus: Shocking!! School girls are immune to such acts from decades and turn their backs or use the pin!

Thomas said...

Lemme share since i have a lil more experience on this one.Ehm.. i'm straight though.I've interviewed, covered famous gays,visited a gay party as a journalist.From what i've learned they change into gays coz of some prob or the other.No its not natural. Its natural only if their Father/Mother was insane or so.We should never encourage it though.A disorder should not be glorified.

Thomas said...

Me:If any of the (bollywood)straight celebrities were gay, who would you want it to be ?

Gay guy:(snickering) celebrities and straight ! Gimme a Break !

Me: blinking (images of Karan Johar and SRK swept past my mind.Big question marks ensued.I'll never know.