I like men.
It’s taken us over three decades to finally come into terms with this reality. The recent gay pride march in the city, held in commemoration of the Stonewall riots, was quite a success. That is in terms of it being a parade that broke all barriers and took the issue into the hands of the masses, literally. But is Bangalore ready to accept its gay folk? This question has no answer, not a concrete one at least for now.
We’re still a folk who’d rather ignore than accept. It’s easier to pass it off as something that one will grow out off or even worse, will get bored off eventually. We like to look at all forms of intimacy between the young of the same sex, as trivial games and will even tease a child for being so silly and foolishly intimate. But we will not accept that they could be gay. Even if we finally do accept them, we’d hope at the bottom of our hearts that it’s some disease that can be cured by medicine. If not medically, then religion will surely do the trick, we remind ourselves, and that finally lets our mind rest in peace.
“It’s not natural!” Every educated straight person likes to scream. But then what is?
Society at large, instructs one to hide these taboo emotions for the fear of being considered different and rebellious. Most of us are so dependent on society that we quietly obey in silence and convince ourselves that we’re doing the right thing.
We try as much as we can to hide and protect that uncle who plays with every little boy’s privates or that aunt who can’t seem to stop fingering every young girl. It’s all hushed up and nobody’s allowed to talk about it, like it never exists! Every night, at least a dozen young boys who return late home in this city face a harassment that nobody will ever believe occurs. Young boys are often followed and stalked by elder men in cars. Men who’ve been forced to conform, who have now finally gained independence, usually financially – leading to a sense of liberation. The only problem is the liberation is now filled with vengeance and the naivety of the pure unconditional love of childhood is now lost somewhere between lust, desire and need.
Why do we do such things to people we love? Why force them to conform and accept society’s norms? Marriages often break after a few years when the spouse realises the other partner is gay. Worse still, some decide to live with it and deprive themselves of what is rightfully theirs. It doesn’t have to be like this. A sense of acceptance and more general understanding of the differences from every human being to the other can solve all this. But it will all happen, only if we try and right now most of us don’t want to do even that!
Tuesday, July 08, 2008
To be or not to be!
I like men.