Earlier this week, Gothamist reported that a 20-year-old Queens woman was sucker punched by a man believed to be more than twice her age on a Manhattan-bound E train. The suspect, who police are still searching for, saw another woman give the victim a kiss on the cheek. Incensed, he allegedly called her a “dyke,” as he proceeded to verbally berate her before ultimately following the woman and punching her in the back of the head and shoving her to the ground — causing her to strike her head on the train’s floor. The coward then fled the scene and left his victim with a fractured spine.
It is still very dangerous to be queer (or even just perceived to be queer) in America. Indeed, at the beginning of the year, the New York City Anti-Violence Project’s annual Crisis of Hate report revealed that 2017 saw a significant surge in anti-LGBTQ violence in America. In fact, 2017 proved to be the deadliest year yet for our community. This does not even include the self-inflicted harm members of the queer community have engaged in as a means to escape the bullying they have to endure.
In August, I had to write about Jamel Myles, a 10-year-old boy who took his own life not long after casually telling his mother that he was gay. She took no issue with her son for embracing the person he was born as, but the little bigots in training around him tortured him — to the point that he felt it was better to leave this world than continue to suffer in it. I’ve had to write about many boys like Jamel taking their lives through the years. I’ve had to write about many victims like the unidentified woman on the New York subway. When I don’t write about homophobia, I have to endure it myself.
A lot of discussions have taken place this week about homophobia, in reference to old homophobic tweets from the likes of comedian Kevin Hart and Heisman Trophy winner Kyler Murray or more recent antics from MSNBC host Mika Brzezinski. Many of these discussions have been asinine in scope because the people who should be listening — straight people — have been opting to lead discussions about a matter that doesn’t directly impact them.
Unfortunately, that is often to be expected, but I take issue with other gay people who go out of their way to sound as astonishingly stupid as their straight counterparts.
Enter Chad Felix Greene, who wrote the piece “The Stigma Against My Conservative Politics Is Worse Than The Stigma Of Being Gay” for The Federalist. If you have never heard of The Federalist, consider yourself #blessed, but imagine a troll farm led by right-wingers who have no idea they are trolls. Then add a martyr complex because conservatives love to play victim.
Lacking self-awareness, Greene writes: “Today I look out across the turbulent sea of political discourse and ask, ‘Why would anyone choose to be a conservative?’ To be a conservative means to openly invite others’ hatred into your life and to lose your humanity in the eyes of strangers who view you exclusively through stereotypes and prejudices.”
Last time I checked, conservatives have an entire media industrial complex that encompasses cable television, local television, and way too much space on the internet that has somehow led to the likes of Tomi Lahren and Diamond and Silk becoming paid political commentators. Progressives have about three hours of primetime on MSNBC.
And yet, Greene asserts, “To be a conservative means to be a marginalized voice, suppressed and dehumanized; bullied into hesitating to speak out.”
Greene continues to talk out of his ass throughout the diatribe, but the following statement is a doozy with respect to its duplicity: “The truth is, I have never faced abuse on Twitter for being gay, but I certainly have for being conservative. I am confident my expression as a gay man would be free and celebrated there and elsewhere, but my unique point of view as a conservative is viewed with suspicion and hostility.”
Perhaps Greene doesn’t have to deal with attacks rooted in his sexuality on Twitter, but there are plenty of queer people online who can’t make a similar claim. I’ve been called a faggot quite a few times online, and though I would be offended if I were called a conservative, conflicting political leanings does not trounce the sting of homophobia.
A more thoughtful person might have considered why he’s “attacked” more for leaning right than liking dick, but because Greene is a white man before he is a gay one, one presumes he is clueless about his privilege, which paved the way for such a patronizing, despicable take. I considered being eloquent about this, but why bother giving Greene a level of consideration he clearly did not provide queer people who are not white, cis, and male.
Was it ever illegal for conservatives to marry? Is it still legal to fire conservatives for their political ideology in multiple states across the nation? Is there conservative conversation therapy? Is it legal for me to refuse to bake a cake for a conservative? Do conservatives have to remember that the FDA requires them to refrain from intercourse with other conservatives 12 months before donating blood?
I’m pretty sure if a male conservative kissed me on the cheek around a violent homophobe, we wouldn’t end up fighting because the other dude was a conservative.
Being conservative in 2018 is many things, but a martyr is not one of them. This level of ignorance would be comical if not for the constant reminders of just how dangerous it remains to be queer in this country. Anyone who identifies as gay should know better.
Chad Felix Greene does not, and while he may once again find himself “attacked” by my saying this, I want to say it like I mean it all the same: fuck him today, fuck him tomorrow, and fuck him next week for that goofy ass essay.
Image via Getty