Gay activists have a new test for differentiating gay people from straight.
It has nothing to do with who a person crawls into bed with, but wholly depends upon who that person supports politically.
Case in point, Connecticut College history professor Jim Downs wrote an op-ed for “The Advocate,” a leading gay magazine in which he argued that openly gay Paypal founder Peter Thiel can’t really be gay.
The reason? He supports Donald Trump for president.
“Peter Thiel, the Silicon Valley billionaire who made news this summer for endorsing Donald Trump at the Republican convention, is a man who has sex with other men,” observed Downs. “But is he gay?” he asked readers.
“Since the Paleolithic Age, people have had sex with people of the same gender. But the notion that this made someone ‘homosexual’ or ‘gay’ was a relatively recent phenomenon in human history,” Downs continued.
He then argued that in order to identify as a gay person, one has to submit to the politics of the gay rights movement.
“From the 1970s to the present, many people who came out of the closet as gay understood their identity as part of a subculture and a specific community,” Downs wrote, and then argued that Thiel is not a part of that culture.
“By the logic of gay liberation, Thiel is an example of a man who has sex with other men, but not a gay man, because he does not embrace the struggle of people to embrace their distinctive identity.”
What especially irked Downs was Thiel’s temerity to speak on behalf of Trump at the Republican National Convention.
“At the convention in Cleveland in July, Thiel was the first person in the history of the party to declare his homosexuality on stage to an audience of people who have historically opposed same-sex marriage, among other LGBT rights,” he wrote.
That appraisal ignored the 30-plus year history of the Log Cabin Republicans, “the nation’s largest Republican organization dedicated to representing LGBT conservatives and allies,” according to its website.
Nonetheless Downs carried on.
“The gay liberation movement has left us a powerful legacy, and protecting that legacy requires understanding the meaning of the term ‘gay’ and not using it simply as a synonym for same-sex desire and intimacy,” Downs concluded.
Few people were in agreement, and took to social media to blast the professor.
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— Sonotmyname (@Inadvertantview) October 16, 2016
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— Zell Oakley (@ZellTietj) October 17, 2016
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— The West Declines (@WestDeclines) October 16, 2016
It’s right up there with calling conservative blacks “eggplants” — black on the outside and white on the inside.
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