Celebs blind to gay issues

Columnist Josh Fernandez returns with a recap of the summer’s not-so-politically-correct quips.

Columnist Josh Fernandez returns with a recap of the summer’s not-so-politically-correct quips.

Prior to college,what I loved most about the summer season was the ability to kick back, sleep in, soak up the sun and sift through whatever lame beach read I was flipping through at the time.

As many of you know, that privilege is left in the dust once you work toward a career, organize your life and rake in the dough to pay for necessities and bills. Free time when the temperatures climb to the 70s and 80s is no longer a viable option.

But don’t worry. Even though I couldn’t write a summer QChat column, you can bet I kept track of comments so outrageous I wanted to tweet #genderandsexualityfail again and again.

Todd Herremans’ astute commentary on “True Blood”

Anyone who knows me knows I have a limited repertoire on sports.

It should come as no surprise then that the first time I heard of Eagles lineman Todd Herremans was when I read about his insensitive “True Blood” tweet. On Tuesday, Aug. 10, the professional athlete posted: “So.. caught up on Trueblood last night.. Not a fan of how they get u hooked with the 1st seasons, then bring on a barrage of homosexuality..”

Philadelphia Inquirer sports columnist John Gonzalez, who follows Herremans on Twitter, asked the Eagles lineman for an on-the-record comment relating to the tweet. Herremans replied: “@gonzophilly I have no issue with homosexuality, to each his/her own…Its jus not for me.. #jussayin.”

While I appreciate that Herremans later issued an apology and deleted the tweets, I don’t appreciate his inability to pay attention to detail. Anyone who watches “True Blood” knows homosexuality isn’t new to the HBO drama.

The television show blatantly uses the struggle for vampire rights (it sounds ridiculous, I know, but watch it and you’ll understand) as a thinly veiled metaphor for the GLBT rights struggle. One of the show’s main characters, Lafayette Reynolds, who’s portrayed by actor Nelsan Ellis, is a gay character and a fan favorite, and he’s been around since the first season.

Elisabeth Hasselbeck: a lesbianism expert
Even though the conservative co-host of “The View,” Elisabeth Hasselbeck, gradually supported marriage equality, she seemed quick to solve one queer mystery: late-blooming lesbians.

The fab four of ABC’s morning talk show discussed the rise in older women coming out of the closet, and Hasselbeck blamed men.
“All the older men are going for younger women, leaving the women with no one,” Hasselbeck said during the July 28 show.

Thankfully, the wise and very queer-friendly Joy Behar crushed Hasselbeck’s dreams of becoming the fountain of lesbian knowledge:

“Being gay is not just holding hands and walking through the tulips,” Behar said. “I don’t think you suddenly wake up and say, ‘You know, I think I want to do that.’”

Behar is right. Straight women aren’t coming out of the queer woodwork just because they’re searching for companionship, as Hasselbeck tried to argue. And it has little to do with horn dogs chasing their younger counterparts and leaving these incredible women in the dust.

GLBT people in my age group are lucky to grow up in semi-accepting society where coming out is encouraged more and more as time goes on.

Feminist Pillar Sarah Palin
A friend brought the following tweet by the former governor of Alaska to my attention: “Who hijacked term:’feminist’?A cackle of rads who want 2 crucify other women w/whom they disagree on a singular issue; it’s ironic (& passé).”

I won’t lie: @SarahPalinUSA’s August 18 tweet makes no sense to me.

Palin could’ve been referring to multiple issues, but my money is on abortion. If that is the issue she’s tackling through Twitter, she fails to realize that no one “hijacked” the term feminist. Feminists have and always will believe that women have the right to make decisions about their bodies – as they should.

Conservatives didn’t give birth to the term “feminism,” so the “cackle of rad[ical]s” Palin singles out didn’t steal it from the former governor’s Alaskan home. Someone should’ve been doing her feminist summer reading last month.

Mr. President
“We’ve got a lot of hard work that we still have to do, “President Barack Obama said at the June 22 LGBT Pride Month Reception, “but we can already point to extraordinary progress that we’ve made over the past year on behalf of Americans who are gay and lesbian, bisexual and transgender.”

I don’t care for the Obama kool-aid drinkers who say he’s got bigger issues to tackle. I know that.

The “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy is in hiatus after an overwhelming victory in the House of Representatives this summer. Same-sex marriage is still an issue in 2010. And thousands of GLBT youths are homeless or face bullying at school. Summer is their temporary sanctuary, and in a few weeks, they won’t even have that.

Josh Fernandez can be reached at josh@temple.edu.

1 Comment

  1. Yes, it’s a pity that the Obama apologists feel that the president’s workload somehow gives him a pass on leadership. From healthcare to the conflicts in Afghanistan and Iraq, Mr. Obama has pretty clearly shown that leadership is not his strong suit. Gay civil rights is no exception, alas.

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