Wednesday, October 03, 2007

A Splendid Little War!

Over the past couple of weeks, radically conservative Christians tried to create a brouhaha over advertising for the Folsom Street Fair. For those who don’t know, the Folsom Street Fair is an event in San Francisco to mark the end of Leather Pride Week. Basically, it’s just a big adult dress-up party, only the costumes require a great deal of talc.

As you can imagine, radical Christians are predisposed to dislike Folsom. Queer Folk? Sex-related paraphernalia? San Francisco? Fun???? “No way, man,” the evangelicals cried out to heaven, “that’s just too much.”

This time around, though, they were particularly peeved over the official poster for the event. It satirized Leonard da Vinci’s Last Supper, only with a cow-hide theme. Spokesmen for the Concerned Women of America expressed their outrage – OUTRAGE! In the end, almost nobody took notice of the radical Christians’ rambilings except (ironically) the queer folk (like myself).

So much of the controversy confused me. For instance, the spokesman for the Concerned Women of America was, well, a man. Actually, I don’t think that I have heard any concerned women speak for the organization. Maybe they are living out the ideal that the radical Christians really want for women. Women shouldn't actually be out in public in their own organizations. No, no! Radical Christian women should be locked away in their houses making Jell-O all day (in a concerned sort of way). And they say we are the kinky ones.

Then I was confused that radical Christians had decided that a fifteenth-century Italian painting had become biblical. The do know that Jesus didn’t actually pose for that drawing, right? When did they start considering it sacred? I can’t be sure, but somehow I think Dan Brown is to blame for this.

Perhaps the most baffling element in the whole story was that the radical Christians threatened to boycott Miller beer for sponsoring the Folsom Street Fair. Isn’t “not drinking” one of the deals about being a radical Christian? So, their boycotting a brewery is a little like Mary Cheney boycotting Trojan Condoms or George W. Bush threatening to boycott the local library. They don’t seem to understand that you have to actually buy the product in the first place for a boycott to be effective.

Whatever the case, radical Christians have been itching for a Culture War for decades now. I say that we give them one. If there is any type of war I condone, it’s a cultural one. It always conjures images of a battlefield strewn with oil paintings and garden fountains.

Well, if the Christians want to claim da Vinci’s Last Supper, I say we give it to them. We will keep our first-amendment right of free speech off of it. That means, however, that they have to agree to hand over several queer sacred objects to us as well. These are some of our most holy relics and they must no longer be profaned by the heathen and undeserving right-wing hetero Christians:

Gloria Gaynor's “I Will Survive”

    Sure, other disco songs would have made more sense as an acknowledged queer anthem (“I’m Coming Out,” for instance). When one thinks about it, “I Will Survive” is basically a rant about how horrible relationships usually end up. The sacred queer apostles, however, decided that “I Will Survive” was the queer gospel. As a result, it must be played at least once per night at every queer club from Lubec, Maine to Ozette, Washington. It’s simply no use for us queer folk to like or dislike the song. We are required to acknowledge the ritual without question. Kind of like most religion.

    From what I understand, radical Christians have brainwashed Gloria Gaynor with their message. We’re going to require that they hand her over to us queer boys. She will also need to convert to atheism. Radical Christians, though, are more than welcome to listen to Tobey Keith. He’s all yours.

Midcentury Lesbian Pulp Fiction

    These novels first appeared as something marketed to titillate hetero men. Their miraculous nature was only discovered later when lots of lesbian women used them as a means to break free of their suburban closets. Now they are part of the lesbian exodus story.

    As part of our queer purification of society, we are going to need all of these texts turned over to the holy Sisters of Cunnilingus for safe keeping. Actually, while we are the subject, all lesbian sex is strictly the intellectual property of actual lesbians (or the otherwise queer-identified). Take heed, hetero men: No more porn, jokes, or fantasies about lesbians having sex. They didn’t invent it for you.

Mr. Clean

    Some claim that Mr. Clean is the Messiah. Others argue that he is just a prophet who brought forward an important message from the goddess. Whatever the case, we all worship at his feet. He is kinky like that.

    Radical Christians must henceforth live in filth in recognition that they are not worthy enough to emulate Prophet Clean. They aren’t fit to lick his lemony-fresh boot.


    Let’s be honest, it’s only the queer boys and the ‘roid heads who keep any gym financially afloat. Often times, those two groups are really the same people anyway.

    Becoming addicted to the gym is one of the queer sacraments. Then we get over it and go soft and squishy again. In the meantime, though, I am sick and tired of homophobic straight men cluttering up my gym space. Yeah, I am speaking about the bizarre guy who showers at my gym wearing shorts. For him, it’s all about his fear of gay men checking him out. What he doesn’t realize, though, is that we are much more likely to be judgmental about his chest, arms, and legs before we would even consider his penis.

    All of that unpleasantness could be avoided, though, if gyms became queer-only spaces. Let us worship in peace.

Mary Tyler Moore

    Yes, the show centered on a heterosexual woman. We all know, though, that it is one of the most sanctified images for queer men (of a certain age). Mary lived the perfect gay man's life. She had a kickin' apartment, drove a hot Mustang, and dated lots of men. So, she didn't have a penis. Must gay men always be defined by their genitalia?

    Gay men (of a certain age) hold Mary in high esteem indeed. Need evidence? I remember one incident from Torn's blog. Rummage through comments in one of his older posts and you will find a lively debate over the exact words to the theme song that transpired among queer male readers. It almost turned into a Thirty Years War when the literalists demanded perfect recitation.

    For gay men (of a certain age), singing the Mary Tyler Moore theme song is like doing the stations of the cross. It's ours. Besides, I am pretty sure that a radical Christian never turned the world on with his or her smile.

The U.S. Navy

    In the world of queer religion, the U.S. Navy is like our religious order. It’s killing me not to make a joke about “seamen,” but this cultural war stuff is serious business. I will restrain myself.

    When I was in grad school, I went with a friend to her brother’s graduation from the Naval training camp outside of Chicago. From that ceremony, it seems that naval training involves learning to sing, dance, tie festive knots, and dazzle crowds with silk flags. Plus, the Navy has more costume changes than a Cher concert. It’s all very queer already. Let's make it official! Radical Christians can keep the guns, though.

Any Image of Naked Men Produced Ever, Ever

    That’s right – From the first caveman’s scribble of his dangle on a wall, to Michelangelo's David, through beefcake mags from the fifties, all representations of naked men belong to us, the practicing queer men of the world.

    Such images of male beauty should not be dishonored with radical Christians' unappreciative eyes. Who churned out all of those priceless works of art? The heteros? I.Don’t.Think.So. It was us queer men who devoted ourselves to lovingly studying every detail of men’s anatomy. The world of art owes us a debt for mapping men's bodies. Come to think of it, any man who looks at himself in the mirror should pay us a fee.

Virgin Mary

    Radical Christians are more than welcome to keep Jesus. Why would we want to hang around that closet case and have to deal with his martyr complex? B - O - R - I - N - G.

    Mary, though, is one of us! Let’s see – A young woman who never had sex with men and yet still gave birth? Then she took a tour of Egypt? I can only imagine that it was an Olivia Cruise that sailed her down the Nile.

    From my perspective, it seems like Mary was the first lesbian to open a spermbank. Granted, it was a cosmic spermbank, but she knew what she wanted. Radical Christianity is just going to have to do without Jesus's mom.


Chad said...

It makes me wonder if they have even heard that Michelangelo himself was very likely a homosexual.

LurkerWithout said...

If you take the lesbians from me I will have to destroy you utterly. Do not mess with my pornographic obsessions!

Anonymous said...

Good post !

vuboq said...

I say let them keep the Virgin Mary, I have a huge crush on Saint Anthony.

PS. I can't wait to get home this evening so I can see all the videos (which are blocked by the Evil Firewall of Doom).

Cooper said...

"They do know that Jesus didn’t actually pose for that drawing, right?" ... This made me laugh.out.loud. Obviously, they don't.

Can we keep St. Francis of Assisi, too? His love of animals has always made him "my" saint.

Earl Cootie said...

I always wonder why I've never heard any complaints about HGTV. That channel is filthy with homos. (But with no filth, alas.)

And shouldn't we own most home improvement/beautification tools/materials/skills? In fact, pretty much any sort of design work? Oh, what the hell, we'll take color too. Anything outside of Crayola's original eight, it's ours, pay up. (Except for mauve. We don't need that one.)

Doug said...

"...Christians threatened to boycott Miller beer..."

You assume any rationality on the part of the religious right.

I'd owe a lot of money to someone if I had to pay each time I looked at myself in the mirror.

Awesome post!

Sarah said...

You want to give the radical Christians guns??? I know you don't approve of guns (I don't, either), but wouldn't it be safer to keep them with the gay navy?

I also think it's really bizarre that the Concerned Women for America have a male spokesperson. I did run across a clip on youtube from last year that featured an actual concerned woman, though. Anderson Cooper got her and Dan Savage on to talk about Mary Cheney's baby. I bet that poor woman had to go make lots of concerned Jell-o to recover...

David said...

Some of us never got over the gym. Just what are you implying?

Anonymous said...

Well, two points. It isn't surprising that the Catholics were the first to get their wimples in a twist over this painting, after all they're all about idol worship. Or perhaps they're more concerned that the gays might steal their generally acknowledged superiority in the field of S&M.

Second, don't confuse the Catholic with the Baptists. A Baptist boycott of Miller would likely be sort of silly, since they're known for their sobriety, but the Catholics? Well, you get my point.

BTW, you might find this amusing, a list of various other Last Supper satires that they didn't get upset about:

pacalaga said...

Alan, you made one little mistake there. Catholics drink wine. Jesus was a Vintner, even though his methods were a bit unorthodox. That whole water-to-wine thing? EXCELLENT reduction in overhead costs.

Marlan said...

Well, the Catholics I know don't really discriminate against any forms of alcohol. Wine, beer, liquor, whatever you got, eh?

As far as St. Mary (Tyler Moore), yes, I concur. She had SPUNK, and like most gay men. I like spunk!

GayProf said...

Chad: I always figure they imagine that queer desires are strictly a 20th century invention.

Lurkerwithout: If it makes you feel better, you are welcome to watch as much gay male porn as you want.

Let's Kill Saturday Night: Great avatar!

VUBOQ: It's true: St. Anthony and all of his namesakes are the most desirable.

Cooper: I have a statue of St. Francis that I consider quite queer.

Earl: You're right! From now on, radical Christians can only wear the color grey.

Doug: Being queer yourself, you don't owe anybody anything. Look all you like. It's free.

Sarah: I wish Anderson Cooper would come out of the closet. Le Sigh

David: I imply nothing. I was actually trying to justify my own likely future of falling off the gym bandwagon.

Alan: Good point about the Catholics and the boycott. I guess I always imagine the Concerned Women of America to be a strictly Protestant Evangelical joint.

I also imagine that the radical Christians were probably pissed off that Jesus was presented as a black man in the Folsom image.

Pacalaga: And who insisted that Jesus do that water-to-wine trick? Yep, it was the Virgin Mary. I'm telling you, Mary is the one that you want at your party.

Marlan: But spunk can be so sticky. . .

Greg said...

I'm with Coop--he's a guy and his name is Francis?!? Definitely one of ours. (Plus, also like our lumberjack friend, I have always admired his love of animals.)

But GayProf, you didn't mention the most important thing the heteros need to sacrifice on our altar...that most amazing Amazon and all her sisters! After all, the only thing gayer than Wonder Batman (so add him to our list, too!).

Give them the wasps in your wall to balance it all out.

Anonymous said...

I say we get to keep all the Mary's, virgin or otherwise. I'm not quite sure yet what we need to do with the Rhoda's.

tornwordo said...

That made me chuckle. I too thought about the Catholics. Drinking for them is a duty, even at mass if you're doing it right. Speaking of which (in a non-sequiturial and tangential way), aren't you part Irish?

GayProf said...

Greg: Well, I didn't want people to think that I am totally obsessed with Wonder Woman. I mean, I keep that pretty well hidden, don't you think?

JP: I think Rhoda belongs to the lesbians.

Torn: Good memory! Indeed, my mother was (is?) Irish American. Both sides of my family were also very Catholic. This explains why I can really swing around a cocktail shaker --- and feel guilty about it.

Signalite said...

I always somehow knew that snagging Mr. Clean for my boyfriend was the right course of action after all...

Sarah said...

Fer serious! If I were a gay man, I'd consider it my duty to go set, gay.

Marius said...

LOL. Great post! The official poster for the Folsom Street Fair did receive some attention, but it faded fast. I think it takes a lot more to shock or rattle Americans. Radical Christians lost this battle.

bardelf said...

Wicked. I love the fact that the Folsom Street folks used DaVinci's, "The Last Supper", as this year's image. And exactly how many of the Religious Right's boycotts have actually been successful? None that I am aware of.

Brilliant post, gayprof, brilliant.

dykewife said...

the guy in the shower probably isn't worried about the guys checking out his package only, if that were the case he'd just wear a jock strap. no, he's not only worried about other men checking out is penis, he's worried that one of those sneaky gay men might "slip it in". afterall, sneaky gay guys are always wanting to have anal sex with paranoid straight guys in the shower.

Elizabeth McClung said...

Thank you for pointing out that "The concerned women of America" are constantly being spoken for by a guy - a very religious guy who is in tune with what women SHOULD want, but not his feminine side, because Christ don't go there.

Thank you for also pointing out that institionalized iconography has now become more important to defend (remember the evils of the Chocolate Jesus?), than the actual event or any sort of literally depiction (Stay away Mel Gibson, no, I wasn't calling you!)

I guess we could do some sort of counter protest - declare that we aren't going to buy any more copies of "Purpose Driven Life" or "Spirit Led Church" or drive to our Christian DVD rental store (with two shelves) to get the Left Behind Series for the weekend.

M-Dub said...

Can we also hand over evangelicals (Oral much to think about!), wanna-bes like Tucker Carlson and morally suspect orators like Rush Limbaugh? Actually, if the gays get all the syle, good looks, and decorating sense, Rush and all the others would have to leave by default.

Excellent post!

Anonymous said...

The guy who showers wearing shorts could also be a female-to-male transsexual. Like you said - must men, gay or not, be defined by their genitals?

Clio Bluestocking said...

"It’s killing me not to make a joke about 'seamen'..."

"Seaman" really requires no effort. Just insert the word (heh heh, "insert" "seamen"!) and the joke just makes itself.

I once worked next door to a restaurant called "The Seaman's Inne." That seemed a more appropriate name for a fertility clinic.

Marlan said...

Oh, and I forgot. Mr. Clean is soo hot. I think he was the first man on TV I lusted after.

Clio Bluestocking said...

P.S. Totally off topic, but tell your iPod that it can NEVER get tired of "Boys of Summer" -- especially if it involves leaving that picture of Don Henley up for a long time (yum!).

Laverne said...

What the heck is covering booted-man's package?

It looks like some kind of asian melon.

Roger Green said...

I had one of those brain freezes, and when you referred to Dan Brown, the author, I confused him with Dan WHITE, who killed Harvey Milk and George Moscone, coincidentally, in San Francisco. Weird.

Since my #1 and #2 sitcoms both feature Mary Tyler Moore, what does that mean?

lost in france said...

I went to the Folsom Street Fair a couple of years ago ( and perhaps wasn't prepared for what I was to see there. This didn't stop me from having an excellent time.

goblinbox said...

Concerned jello! SNORT!

Mike said...

I'd also like to lay claim to the hunky cast of the "Lord of the Rings" movies.

A lot of "them" have tried to claim the series as their own as a huge Christian allegory. Let them keep Chronicles of Narnia.

kaleidescopeeyes88 said...

Radical Christians make me want to poke my eyes out with a fork. But the way you write about them makes me laugh, at least.