Thursday, February 23, 2006

The birdshot that broke the mountain's back

Michael, Could you comment on why Gonzaga students chanting "Brokeback Mountain" at a gay opponent is bad and worthy of censure, but Jill Sobule baiting Dick Cheney in the same way is "funny?"

I imagine that if somehow the Sobule meme got picked up and Gonzaga students took to sing-song chants of “Brokeback Mountain” at a Dick Cheney appearance, there would be no outrage.

What interests me is the larger, cultural implication. It seems that even liberals recognize the depravity inherent in homosexual behavior that still shames those who engage in it. Hence, the effort by college administrators (read: liberals) to shield the homosexual student from the shame that comes when his actions are mocked by the “Brokeback Mountain” chant.

Conversely, the laughter that accompanies portrayal of Cheney and Whittington as the leads in “Brokeback Mountain” stems from its absurdity. It is like when John Wayne would pretend to be a “swish” for a moment on the “Dean Martin” show. Laughter comes from the unimaginable juxtaposition of someone like Cheney behaving in so depraved a manner.

It seems to me that we should not let liberals have it all ways. They can’t at once laud homosexuality as a natural expression of love, while trying to shield those who practice it from being called out AND yet at the same time be willing to use homosexuality to ridicule someone with whom they disagree.