Gantpants' Gay Life

Gantpants' Gay Life is an ongoing webcomic about my experiences as an adolescent trying to find myself.

All of the artwork and narrative on this website is © Gant Powell and cannot be used without my permission. If you would like to contact me to use any of the materials on this website (artwork or narratives) please visit the contact page of my website.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Captain Owen Honors. Have we missed the point?

M*A*S*H's Cpl. Klinger
Recently, it has been broadcast on the news about these stupid videos that Capt. Honors made to entertain his crew. It is also said that they were made to cover common issues aboard the ship, like proper bathroom behavior (conserve water, don't use too much toilet paper blah blah blah) and with some humor. They're cheap videos, and obviously an immature attempt at immature humor. They were reported on by the Norfolk Va newspaper The Virginian-Pilot on the first of this month and have since made the rounds, labelled as "raunchy," "vulgar," and "offensive" as well as "anti-gay."

The videos are a (lousy) attempt at humor to keep people entertained, that much is obvious. I laughed while watching the one that The Advocate has hosted in its article. I was not personally offended by this video. If anything it sort of reminded me of the silly skits we used to perform in summer camp. Sex, be it homosexual or heterosexual, has been comedy fodder for generations. For example, I would love to hear the opinions from the folks shouting "discrimination" on this issue on such comedy classics like "Blazing Saddles" or the TV series "M*A*S*H." I make the comparison only because a large part of the issue here has been left out. Namely, the real reason why the videos are actually offensive.

So I laughed at the video I watched, but I'm not in the armed forces and struggling with DADT enforcement, which would easily make watching this material hurtful and alienating. My main issue with these videos being a news story is that the real issue of why they are offensive is glossed over. It isn't the videos that are the problem, it is the overall truth behind them, of alienating behavior that our culture at large encourages. This is not a naval issue, or one that is confined to our armed forces. It extends to dinner parties, politics, pundits, family friends, schools, and anywhere where people refuse to accept that homosexuals deserve the same universal respect that heterosexuals have always been granted.

When we have the respect we deserve, and as a community we have been allowed to shed our insecurities as second class citizens - that is when the rest of the world will have earned the privilege to have fun at our expense the way that friends can. Until then, it will wound beyond intent.

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