Why Can’t I Be Gay?

Why Can’t I Be Gay?


I know, I know.  I get accused of being a homophobe whenever I discuss “Gay” issues.  In fact, for the last few months, I’ve purposely been avoiding the subject.  We haven’t discussed it on the show, I don’t engage in conversations about it in my personal life, and I don’t watch “proLGBT” TV anymore.  (BBC TV is almost exclusively LGBT issues somewhere in the show.)  I thought the break would help me get a new perspective on gay and lesbian issues.  (I don’t even know if I should capitalize gay or lesbian.  I let my stunningly brilliant social media expert proof my bogs.  So if you see a problem, blame her.)
So I am watching rugby a few weeks ago.  You know…. rugby.  Better than football, tougher than UFC, more fun than a barrel of monkeys.  As with every sport, the refereeing was “a crackin’ dodgy job of it”, and everyone was upset about how poorly the game was being called.  All the rugby rags around the world decried how awful the game was, and what a terrible display of refereeing.  The referee?  Nigel Owens.  The game?  Biggest of the year, England vs New Zealand.
So for two straight days, English news outlets talked about how bad Owens had called the game.  For two days New Zealand called him out for his awful job.  Even the Welsh, who revere him almost as much as Tom Jones, said he should apologize for “making such a dog’s dinner” out of the game.  So what does this have to do with gay issues?
Someone, somewhere, said that someone in the crowd made homosexual slurs during the game and they were embarrassed.
You guessed it.  People started demanding an investigation.  People wanted heads to roll.  And for TWO WEEKS there was no headlines about rugby, just headlines about how unfair Nigel Owens had been treated.  Never mind the real issue is not that he’s gay, but he has become a terrible ref.  I don’t think any one cares he’s gay.  I don’t.  I just want him to do a good job of refereeing the biggest game of the year.  Now, two people are permanently banned from official RFU games.  However, no one has ever said what they actually said.  Keep in mind, the Brits print everything, no matter how disgusting.  But not what these people allegedly said.  Crisis of terrible reffing over.
I sigh and move on.  Until this happens.  I’m talking to a teenager.  She says, “You remind me of my history teacher.  He’s so cool!”
“Is he old and fat?” I ask.
“NO!  He’s so cool!”“So what makes him cool?”
“He GAY!  DUH!”
“So to be cool as a teacher all you have to be is gay?”
“Well, no, but you can’t be cool unless you are gay.”
Ah.  Call me old fashioned, but I didn’t care when I was a kid about the teacher’s home life.  I just wanted to get in, get out, and go live my life, become rich and successful.  That’s what cool was when I was a kid.  Success.  Apparently, things have changed.  No wonder we’re now 25th in the world as far as producing smart youngsters.
And then I remembered Michael Sam.  He’s the first “openly” gay college player drafted in the NFL.  He kissed his boyfriend on national TV!  The media was all twitterpated about Micahel Sam, the first openly gay player drafted by the NFL!  Holy Smokes!  The first openly gay college player drafted by the NFL!  Every interview focused on how gay he was, how he is the first, and “HEY!  You’re really gay!”  Great, he’s gay.  But from what I saw when he played at U of M, he was a little slow, some problems with his foot work, and was a bit overweight.  That works in college.  It doesn’t work in the pros.  Drafted by the Rams, he was the first openly gay player dropped by the Rams.  Of course, charges of bigotry and homophobia floated around on the fringe.  Miracle of miracles, Jerry Jones, Headline Whore from Dallas, picked up the first openly gay player drafted into the NFL.  Cue the drum roll: He was the first openly gay player dropped from an NFL team.  You know why?  Slow, bad footwork, and overweight.  Because as much as Jerry wants that “openly gay” headline for the Cowboys, you can’t afford a player who sucks.  Not in a gay way, but just bad.  Sorry for the confusion.  
I LOVE old musicals.  Gene Kelly and Debbie Reynolds dancing over a couch?  Classic!  Fred Astaire dancing with a hat rack?  AWESOME!  And when I first watched those movies as a child, I felt bright, and happy, and I wanted some magic shoes like Gene Kelly.  In other words, I felt gay.
Yeah.  Thanks for that, gay and lesbian community.
But hey, at least now I’m cool.
Pat J. Bertroche
Read More:
the doc n lefty show des moines iowa politics