- Terry Castle, The Apparitional Lesbian
- Andrea Dworkin, Right Wing Women
Male characters in TV and movies are gay but female characters are sexually fluid because heaven forbid even fictional women not be available to men.
The hottest couple on the Brazilian telenovela has yet to kiss, and the network may be to blame.
AfterEllen readers from around the world wrote in asking us to continue “Clarina” coverage and I, for one, am thrilled to oblige. Although modern in many ways, Brazil is still a country rooted in Catholic tradition. Em Familia’s lesbian storyline is a groundbreaking step forward in gay normalization and acceptance. Over the last month Marina and Clara’s relationship has deepened, but fans are still concerned whether a kiss between a lesbian and a married woman will be aired in Brazil.
During the April 13 episode of Em Familia, Clara and Marina’s sexual tension reached new, dizzying heights. Clara and Marina exchanged longing glances and veiled caresses while dancing to “The Way You Look Tonight” in a gorgeous, bittersweet scene that left fans speechless. Several AE readers wrote that wrote that Marina and Clara’s dance was the best Em Familia scene yet, and one of the most moving televised gay moments they’d ever seen.
I would agree with the right-wing conservative: it is unimaginable that any woman in today’s society would not want to date men. For patriarchy demands that women be sexually available to men. For homosexuality is not seen in our romance novels or movies. For words like “dyke” and “lesbian” have become dirty words that schoolchildren spit to insult and degrade their peers and disliked female teachers. How, then, could it be that despite being conditioned by heteronormative society, despite lacking any knowledge of homosexuality outside of childhood cruelty and extreme politics, lesbians exist and are speaking up?
This may be true or false – who can say? – but what is true in it, so it seems to me, is that lesbophobia and misogyny are dual in nature; it is not just the fear of homosexuality, but the fear of women who do not love men. For it takes little social experience notice how no one ever questions the sexuality of a gay man; a man could have a slightly limp hand and everyone is ready to jump on the idea that he is gay. But lesbianism is met with suspicion, disbelief and assumptions, because it is unthinkable under heteropatriarchy to not worship male assets.
But undoubtedly, I think, a lesbian of the past would have to marry a man as women had no control over their lives. To deny men sex and romance is the ultimate resistance, but the true nature of a lesbian is the unfaltering, unconditional love and appreciation for women. The root of lesbophobia is that lesbianism is mistaken as the hatred of men, when it is in fact the love of women."
The kick of girl-girl porno lies partly in its catering to the fantasy of violating the privacy of lesbians, of making even sex between women - something quite threatening to male sexual prerogative-serve a male agenda; the other, tacit element is the kick of seeing “normal”girls made to emulate homosexual activity. The assumption is that homosexual activity is repulsive, and that therefore the models are disgusted by it and endure it under some compulsion - whether the compulsion of money, force of personality, or physical threat.
Pictures of real lesbians - at Gay Pride rallies, for example - kissing, necking and flirting are often considered disgusting and ugly by the same men who enjoy girl-girl fantasy porn.
Lesbians in the public world who kiss, hold hands, or otherwise behave like a sexually intimate couple (in a restaurant, in a park, at a movie) have often been subjected to abuse, threats and violence from hetero men - the same men who constitute the market for ever-popular girl-girl porno."
- Catharine A. Mackinnon, “Not For Sale: Feminists Resisting Prostitution & Pornography.” 2004.
- Pat Griffin
Fred Phelps died this Wednesday. His death was announced to the public by members of his family and former church on Thursday.
You’re familiar with his family and former church—they’re pretty much one and the same. They’re the ones who are famous for clawing for attention for their message, such as it is, by picketing funerals and other public events with viciously anti-LGBT signs.
The passing of Phelps has been a karmic challenge to the nation and to the LGBTQ community in particular. It can difficult to find the strength of character to extend the compassion to his family that they so vocally refused to extend to others.
It can be easier, though, if we think about the fact that in an odd way, we need to be grateful that he sent his clan out to spew their bile into the world.
Other people may have tried harder to spread hate than Fred Phelps, but no one was louder or meaner about it. But—and this is key to where our gratitude should lie—Phelps turned out to be really, really bad at it.
And as hurtful and frustrating as his actions were, they have boomeranged in the LGBTQ community’s favor many times over.
Phelps and his offspring managed to be so loud, so vicious, and so obviously wrong that the number of non-relatives they have managed to draw into their church can be counted on one hand. Meanwhile, their protests of funerals—especially of military funerals—showed the world how much hate lies behind anti-gay rhetoric. There is arguably an entire generation that now associates all anti-LGBT rhetoric with a mental picture of a screeching WBC member.
Just as important, the clan’s prominent position in the media made it easier and easier for the general public to see how similar all anti-LGBT rhetoric is. It really isn’t more than a step or two from one of their church’s vile protest signs to an average public statement by more garden-variety bigots like Rick Santorum, Sarah Palin, Michele Bachmann, or Mike Huckabee.