Monday, December 3, 2012

Class Discussion, Nov. 28, 2012

In class today we had discussed why the term lifestyle is so offensive when referring to gay individuals and their sexuality.  For so long, I too had often found myself labeling homosexuality as a lifestyle than what it really was—a natural sexual preference—not a choice, but preference that one is born with.  I think part of the reason why this is so is because, like in both the Christian and the Indian community, there is a strong draw to believe that homosexuality is some sort of “fad” that because popular culture is condoning it more people are exploring these possibilities.  I recall the numerous times that my homophobic father would get frustrated with the media, accusing them of the exponential growth in homosexuality, or so he claims.  But he, and other who share his views, fail to understand and accept is the fact that homosexuality is neither a choice nor influenced by any formal outlet.  If anything, the media simply gave permission to be more open and truthful to one’s self, the media simply encouraged individuals to become expressive of their identities.  This logic explains too why we are seeing a “growth in homosexuality” because as permission has been given to become more expressive of one’s self, we are seeing more people wanting to show who they are to the world and not be shy to hide it.  My question becomes, however, when did society begin to permit the media to be the authoritarian of what is acceptable and what is not?  Should sexuality or any other definitions of an individual be defined or made permissible by the media?  Who then dictates what is proper?  Religion?  Politicians?  Who?


  1. It's an interesting question because I think most people wonder how and when the media became this metaphorical 'big brother' for what is permissable in the world. After two years of the Media Studies major, I'm still not sure why it is that the media world runs the world.

    However, I do no think that because the media has made it more acceptable, that people now feel more comfortable being gay. I think that, regardless of how 'out' someone may be, there is a constant 'coming-out' process with each person they meet. Even if it's a known fact to their family and all their friends, everytime the top comes up, its a new 'coming-out' process. That does not change with the change in the way media portrays homosexuality. That will exist until the day people stop labelling people homosexual or heterosexual, and instead just labelling people as people.

  2. I dont think that religion, politicians, or any of these sorts of classifications can be marked as dictators of what is proper. As we've learned and studied about hegemonic ideals, we learned that many groups suffer oppression. The definition details that they are derived from the ruling class which has historically been, the wealthy. Money talks, as we know. Its all a matter of value, social status. As much as we wouldn't want this to be the case, it is. When studying about these hegemonic ideals and concepts we've seen how people attempted to break away from them. We have all of these questions about who made them up and why they exist and how they shape the lives of individuals. However what we sometimes fail to acknowledge is that without them life would be too peaceful, too happy, too accepting. Most people accept these hegemonic ideals, some people like them whether they acknowledge that or not. They exist not only with dealing with sexuality but when discussing issues of race, class and gender as well.