In this week's edition of The Daily Banter Mail Bag, Bob, Ben and Chez discuss why some conservatives are afraid of gay people, Banter's lack of Kiev coverage and Best Picture predictions.
1. What do you think it is about gay people that scares straight conservatives so much? It has to be more than just a line from the Bible. I'm tired of these clowns thinking that gay is somehow contagious.
Ben: Okay, I'm going to get a bit Freudian on you here. My personal opinion is that people who are scared of gays are projecting some sort of repression they are dealing with themselves. I'm not saying everyone who is homophobic is completely gay, but I'd bet there's a side of themselves they either haven't explored, haven't come to terms with, or downright hate. I'm generalizing a little, but I think conservatives also tend to base their political and social philosophies on what they think the world should be, not what it actually is. If you're brought up in a culture that believes homosexuality is a sin, you'll be more likely to want the world to fit into neat boxes of straight and gay and right and wrong etc etc. Liberalism (at least my version of it) accepts gradations of sexuality and morality and accepts the world isn't necessarily the way you think it should be. Conservatives often can't deal with homosexuality because it doesn't fit into their world view, and therefore it becomes evil and something to be attacked. Having said that, there are many conservatives who don't care about homosexuality at all. Unfortunately in America, they seem to be in the minority.
Chez: Bob and I were actually talking about this on the new podcast. In addition to conservatives being terrified that maybe they'll discover they suddenly want gay sex, I think they've been conditioned to believe only the most ridiculous stereotypes and caricatures of what the LGBT community is like. Assholes like Judson Phillips really do have this insane idea that gay people are all leather-wearing sex maniacs out to prey on children; they think this because they don't know any better and don't care to learn differently, although I'm not sure they'd ever accept that gay people are no different than anybody else except in the one they seem to think is so fucking all-important. The thing to remember is that all this fighting they're doing, all this bigotry they're trying to codify through legislation, will amount to absolutely nothing. Gay equality is a foregone conclusion. Over and done. There may be minor victories for the frightened conservative backward-asses here and there but ultimately they're going to lose. Actually, they already have -- that's why they're losing their minds right now.
Bob: First of all, I don't think all conservatives are afraid of gay people. But regarding the one's who are, it's a few of things. It's the gradual loss of that 1950s utopia some conservatives cling onto. It's the hard-lined religious/Leviticus thing in which they believe homosexuality is a sin. And it gets more ridiculous from there. Some of them think gayness is contagious -- that either they'll be contaminated with The Gay or that their children will or both. This leads to the vile notion that homosexuality can be cured like a disease. Related to this, they believe gay people are trying to hit on them, convert them or trick them into doing something they perceive as gay. Ultimately, however, it comes down to this: people fear what they don't understand.
2. I haven't seen a lot of coverage at The Daily Banter on what's going on with Ukraine. It looks like things are getting pretty tense. Any thoughts on this?
Chez: No. Not really. If anyone in Ukraine refers to Michael Sam as "that black football player" then it'll become my beat.
Bob: I wrote a multiple-update post when the protests were raging in Kiev. I think two people read the post. I'm not entirely blaming a lack of readership, but with so much writing to do every day, it's difficult to dedicate time to something that no one is reading.
Ben: We've actually been trying to get hold of a reporter named Askold Krushelnycky, a London born journalist of Ukrainian descent who used to work with my dad many years ago on the South London Press. He's a pretty serious journalist and is covering the crisis for the Sunday Times (I believe), and we've been trying to set up an interview with him for the past week. He's in the Ukraine at the moment where it's all kicking off, and we've been getting some pretty scary emails from him about Putin's plans to potentially launch an assault on the country in the coming days. We'll keep you informed, so stay tuned!
3. Have you seen the movies nominated for Best Picture this year? What do you want to see win?
Bob: It's really a toss-up between "Gravity" and "12 Years a Slave." I didn't see the latter, but "Gravity" was one of the most breathtaking movies I've ever seen. When I walked out of the theater, I felt like I had been in space.
Chez: Of the nominees that are really in competition I've only seen "Gravity" and "American Hustle." "Gravity" is a stunning achievement across the board so while I haven't seen "12 Years a Slave" it would have to be better than spectacular to change my mind that "Gravity" should win. But, you know, one man's opinion and all that.
Ben: I have barely been to the movies this past year so can't weigh in on the Oscars as I haven't seen any of the nominated titles. Sorry. Bit of a shit answer, I know, so here's a Netflix recommendation; check out 'The Fall' on Netflix with Gillian Anderson. Absolutely fucking awesome.