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Thread: The word "Gay" as an insult

  1. #1

    Default The word "Gay" as an insult

    I am sitting here with my wife (user KaraZorEl) as she is watching "Glee". Personally I am not a fan of the show, however I would LOVE to be the obedient lackey to the insane cheerleader coach, but she loves it. She is currently using the end credits theme as her text message ringtone. She is telling me that she was in the presence of a co-worker when her phone went off and her co-worker says "That is the gayest ringtone I have ever heard". My wife replied "First of all, it's not gay. And it's the music from Glee". Her co-worker, in one of the most ignorant retorts I have ever heard said, "That explains it".

    I don't assume that everyone here is sympathetic to the progression of gay rights, though I hope the more so than not are. That being said, one's personal thoughts on the matter aside, to use the word "gay" as an insult is INFURIATING to me. The way I see it the use of gay as a synonym for words like "lame", "stupid", "inferior", or to describe the lack of quality of any given subject is the same as using racial epithets in a similar context.

    One of my best friends, in fact the only person in my life with whom I have been friends since high school, is gay. He is one of the nicest and most generous people I know. More to the point, a lot of people with whom I am friends are gay, and NONE of them possess anything approaching the levels of apathy and ignorance I see in most people in general. The fact that such ignorant people use the word "gay" in a derogatory context is proof of my point.

    I am no more likely to use, nor tolerate use of, the word as an insult than I am to use any other more infamous slur.

    I am venting this here, and most likely preaching to the choir, because I have no interest in doing so on facebook and inciting a debate from the less enlightened people in my life. If you see eye to eye with me on this issue PLEASE "be the change you wish to see in the world", and stand up to the morons who perpetuate the hate.

    Spread hope not hate.

  2. #2

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    Copied from Wikipedia

    From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (Redirected from GAY)
    Jump to: navigation, search
    Look up Gay or gay in Wiktionary, the free dictionary.

    Gay refers primarily to homosexuality, a sexual attraction toward members of the same sex. An earlier meaning is happy or cheerful.

    Gay may also refer to:

    Places
    Gay, Armenia
    Gay, Russia
    Gay, Georgia, United States
    Gay, Michigan, United States
    Gay, West Virginia, United States
    People
    Gay (given name)
    Gay (surname)
    Other uses
    G-A-Y, a nightclub
    Tropical Storm Gay, the name of several tropical cyclones
    Gay?, EP by indie rock band 12 Rods
    Gay class fast patrol boat, twelve boats that served with the British Royal Navy from the early 1950s
    Gaya Airport, IATA airport code GAY
    Gayo language (ISO code gay)


    So in a sence when your wifes friend said "That is the gayest ringtone I have ever heard". She could have well ment that it was the happiest ringtone she had ever heard.

    Not to pick a fight, but I belive it takes a single tract mind to find the wrong meaning of a word that is commonly used every day that has different meanings.

    Would you considder it a insult if you over heard someone say the gay and happy children where out playing in the field?
    Or when some one says they had a gay old time last night at the dance?

    I do not, as the word gay has so many different meanings and uses.

    Just about as bad as a African getting upset over the use of the word negro, and wouldn't you know it Wikipedia does not give credit to the earliest use of the word, traced back to Shakespear.
    The English refered to the Irish as negros even though they do not have the black skin tone.

    The english language is such a wonderfull, yet well miss understood, and we change the rules every so often its a wonder anyone can say anything today without offending anyone.


    Off my soap box now.

  3. #3

    Default



    Quote Originally Posted by lonnie View Post
    Copied from Wikipedia

    From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (Redirected from GAY)
    Jump to: navigation, search
    Look up Gay or gay in Wiktionary, the free dictionary.

    Gay refers primarily to homosexuality, a sexual attraction toward members of the same sex. An earlier meaning is happy or cheerful.

    Gay may also refer to:

    Places
    Gay, Armenia
    Gay, Russia
    Gay, Georgia, United States
    Gay, Michigan, United States
    Gay, West Virginia, United States
    People
    Gay (given name)
    Gay (surname)
    Other uses
    G-A-Y, a nightclub
    Tropical Storm Gay, the name of several tropical cyclones
    Gay?, EP by indie rock band 12 Rods
    Gay class fast patrol boat, twelve boats that served with the British Royal Navy from the early 1950s
    Gaya Airport, IATA airport code GAY
    Gayo language (ISO code gay)


    So in a sence when your wifes friend said "That is the gayest ringtone I have ever heard". She could have well ment that it was the happiest ringtone she had ever heard.

    Not to pick a fight, but I belive it takes a single tract mind to find the wrong meaning of a word that is commonly used every day that has different meanings.

    Would you considder it a insult if you over heard someone say the gay and happy children where out playing in the field?
    Or when some one says they had a gay old time last night at the dance?

    I do not, as the word gay has so many different meanings and uses.

    Just about as bad as a African getting upset over the use of the word negro, and wouldn't you know it Wikipedia does not give credit to the earliest use of the word, traced back to Shakespear.
    The English refered to the Irish as negros even though they do not have the black skin tone.

    The english language is such a wonderfull, yet well miss understood, and we change the rules every so often its a wonder anyone can say anything today without offending anyone.


    Off my soap box now.
    No. Language evolves, and the common usage of the word gay is now to refer to the sexual orientation. Use of the word gay to mean happy is very uncommon, as well, so to try passing off its use as a derogatory term is disingenuous at best, and downright offensive in some cases.

    The word gay technically has several definitions, but none of them except one are in common usage. No one refers to prostitutes as gay anymore, but that was a common usage in the late 1800s. No one uses gay to mean happy anymore, to the point that younger people snicker at the closing credits of The Flintstones and their reference to a "gay old time".

    And yes, it's similar to using negro, a word that might have started with Shakespeare, but later evolved to be a derogatory term. There might have been other uses once upon a time, but the word has evolved, and we all know what it means now.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  4. #4

    Default

    From the Oxford Dictionary

    Usage

    Gay meaning ‘homosexual’ became established in the 1960s as the term preferred by homosexual men to describe themselves. It is now the standard accepted term throughout the English-speaking world. As a result, the centuries-old other senses of gay meaning either ‘carefree’ or ‘bright and showy’ have more or less dropped out of natural use. The word gay cannot be readily used today in these older senses without arousing a sense of double entendre, despite concerted attempts by some to keep them alive.
    Gay in its modern sense typically refers to men (lesbian being the standard term for homosexual women) but in some contexts it can be used of both men and women.
    Personally I would and do use the word in both its old and new to meanings, mainly to describe some one, usually a male who is ‘bright and showy’, regardless of there sexual orientation.

    I see gay very much as behavioural trait, not a gender.

    When I was growing up I spent a lot of time with my grandparents, they use gay in its old meaning, usually to describe brightly coloured things, I can remember them calling a design on my t shirt gay, they never used it towards a homosexual though, the usually used 'poof' which isn't PC I'll admit, but it was an adequate description of who they where referring to, Dale Winton, usually.
    (a very 'camp', and openly gay, tv presenter who was prevalent at the time)

    There are other homosexuals who don't draw attention to themselves, or act in a stereotypical gay manner, and just go about there lives like everyone else and don't get any rap for it.

  5. #5

    Default

    Most of the people who use 'gay' as an insult are 12 year old boys or people who act like 12 year old boys. I can't change stupid just like the stupid can't change my intelligence. I just find it funny that most of the people who say "that's so gay" have no frickin' clue that the word originally meant happy and giddy. Yes, I know that language evolves, but still. Really, humans? Really? I didn't learn that gay meant homosexual until I was 9 and, sadly, used it in the poems I wrote in the third grade because I liked the word.

    Doesn't mean that I condone the usage of the word 'gay' when trying to insult somebody. Whenever I hear somebody use it in such terms, I laugh because I know that they're either adolescent boys or the type of people who drink 20 beers to show how 'manly' they are and then die of alcohol poisoning. Sure, I want to kick them in the face, but I might go to jail or scuff my shoes on their broken teeth. And I hate getting blood on my favorite oxfords, so it's just a lose-lose situation.

    The sad fact is that the ignorant outnumber the intelligent and that, even if we all "stand up" to these morons, they're either going to hate us MORE or just not change at all. Plus, I've never heard anybody that was worth my time use the word 'gay' in such a derogatory manner. And then it shouldn't be worth your time to fight it because that just adds fuel to the fire. If they're not complete morons, they'll realize that you really don't care and move on until they find the attention they're looking for. And if they ARE complete morons, they'll get their asses handed to them. Seriously. I recently talked to an old friend from elementary school who said that the biggest bully who literally took advantage of my sensitive psyche got syphilis and is in jail for doing crack. Karma gets these folk and you just have to laugh at them because you know that they'll pay for their wrongdoing.

    tl;dr: Ignore it. Adult bullies either stop when they find out that shit doesn't do anything past high school or get fucked over by karma.



    Quote Originally Posted by lonnie View Post
    So in a sence when your wifes friend said "That is the gayest ringtone I have ever heard". She could have well ment that it was the happiest ringtone she had ever heard.
    Three words: Tone of voice. There's a difference between a snooty "That's so gay" and the awkward time-traveled victorian man saying "My, my! Look at all the gay people in the 21st century!"

    I say 'gay' in casual conversation, but that's because I'm so used to doing weird voice inflections and being quirky like that. And that's only when I'm drinking wine because I feel fancy and say "Why, chap! This wine makes me feel positively gay!" Loving comedy does that to you, I guess.

  6. #6

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    I'm gay and I don't find it very insulting at all, granted I get into insulting matches with some of my friends quite a bit just for the fun of it, you'd be amazed (or horrified) at some of the creative gay and non gay insults we've thrown at each other.

    I don't let insults from other people run my life, it's really not worth my time so I don't worry or care about it. My best advice is to just ignore them and move on.

  7. #7

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    This is one of the most irritating issues around. Most gay people don't give two shits. It's all the straight people and gays who have nothing better to do that get butthurt about it. I hate to be so vulgar, but this specific issue irritates the hell out of me. Gay people don't care, neither should you.

    It's like using the N word. If you're using it as an insult, it's bad. If you call your friend your N--, you aren't insulting him. When you say something's gay, you aren't saying something against gays as a group, you are simply describing something which you find stupid. If gay only meant cheerful, would it still be wrong to call something gay?

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by Grizzy View Post
    This is one of the most irritating issues around. Most gay people don't give two shits. It's all the straight people and gays who have nothing better to do that get butthurt about it. I hate to be so vulgar, but this specific issue irritates the hell out of me. Gay people don't care, neither should you.

    It's like using the N word. If you're using it as an insult, it's bad. If you call your friend your N--, you aren't insulting him. When you say something's gay, you aren't saying something against gays as a group, you are simply describing something which you find stupid. If gay only meant cheerful, would it still be wrong to call something gay?
    There is at least one gay person that is annoyed by it.

    Also, if you're using gay to mean stupid or as some other insult, you have to inherently believe that being gay is stupid or inferior. Yes, there is a difference between calling something gay meaning that something has traits of or associations with gay people, and calling something gay meaning stupid.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by xbabyx View Post
    Also, if you're using gay to mean stupid or as some other insult, you have to inherently believe that being gay is stupid or inferior.
    No, that means you believe the WORD gay means something stupid, it doesn't mean you think homosexuals/gay people are stupid. IF I say my food is shit, does that means I have to inherently believe that my food is actually made of shit, or does it mean that I think the WORD shit means not good/bad?

  10. #10
    Supersam1223

    Default

    I know exactly what you are talking about, I HATE it. I hear people calling each other gay at school about every 10 minutes (not an exaggeration), it has been reduced to a petty insult, I find that much the same thing has happed to the word pedophile.

    Also I was hveing an empty conversation about Glee (I don't watch it), and someone mentioned that there was two gay guys kissing on it, and my mate was like "Oh my God thats disgusting!" I was standing there thinking "What the fuck is wrong with two gays kissing? How is it any different from two straight people kissing?" It really pisses me off that people are so ignorant and disrespectful to the LGBT community.

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