Monday, April 28, 2008

At the Edge of My Sanity

Why do homophobics feel so at ease sharing their tirades with me? I will never agree with what they have to say, and I am not even remotely interested. Yet, at several points in my life, people would suddenly feel the need to share how much they dislike homosexuals and why. Their spew of prejudice doesn't require any encouragement. It just goes on and on.

It's not just homophobes. Since I chose to be vegetarian, I have attended 5 weddings. At 2 of them, I was reprimanded for being "troublesome" and "overly religious." On both occasions, my vegetarian meals were served ala carte, so it did not disrupt the menu for the other guests. Yet, people feel the need -- and the moral justification -- to bombard me with their objections to what is different.

Why? Most importantly, is there a polite way of telling these people to shove off? One of my ex-classmates is an argumentative lawyer who also happens to be a loud-mouthed homophobe. He had expressed many times that he believes homosexuals should be strung up and whipped. I really hate it when he talks like that. In fact, right now I wish he would be strung up and whipped for saying things like these.

Not exactly very progressive and tolerant of me.

I feel like shouting at people these past few days. It has been about a month since I last practiced yoga, and I think the lack of practice is starting to tear at the edges of my sanity. I gave myself exactly one month of rest after the surgery. So, 3rd of May, please come soon. Otherwise I might not have any friends left.


Anonymous said...

sure you'll have friends left...

but maybe end up with friends like us you also cannot tahan... all vegan homosexuals!!!

darkorpheus said...

Ovidia I also say. One cannot live on tofu alone.

Ana S. said...

It's the old question...should we tolerate intolerance? I never know what to say to people who make homophobic/racist/xenophobic comments in front of me either. I try to avoid snapping at them, but I also try to get away from them and their conversation as soon as possible.

Anonymous said...

I don't know if this will help . . . maybe more with the vegetarian criticizers than the homophobes, but a teacher once suggested that when someone asks a question that's too personal or criticizes something about you, ask them: Why do you care?

Another teacher once said that when someone is negatively judging a whole group of people, ask them to name one. Making it personal makes it harder to be mean. In this case, it may not work, though. But it may puzzle them and shut them up!

darkorpheus said...

Nymeth I wonder sometimes if it's karma, or is it because, like my friends tell me, "You look like you listen."

But sometimes it can be hard to get away. I feel like if I don't say anything, I'm condoning it. But I also know they are not going to change their mind no matter what I say.

gartenfische Thanks for the suggestion. I think the hardest part would be to stay civil while I'm addressing the issue.

Carl V. Anderson said...

"Not exactly very progressive and tolerant of me."

It may not be very Christian of me to say so, but I don't think everyone (for example people like the 'strung up and whipped' guy) need to be treated progressively or tolerantly.

Sometimes the only thing that will get through to people like that is strong words and strong behaviors.

Unfortunately more often than not people like that are lost causes.

darkorpheus said...

Carl I agree - often I "know" I will not be able to make a difference -- especially not by the "gentle approach."

But somehow I am still idealistic/naive enough to believe I should try.

Anonymous said...

What's going on on May 3rd?

I hate it when people have to bombard me with objections to whatever I'm choosing for myself. It's just flat out annoying when what I choose does not in any way interfere with their life.

People nowadays have way too much free time and opinions on just about anything!

darkorpheus said...

Matt I so agree with you. Unless they are in love with me and I'm going to break their heart, it's none of their business who I choose to love -- or what I eat for that matter.

I used to wear an ankh when I go out. One time, a guy felt very strongly that he had to tell me people might mistake me for a lesbian. Apparently he mistook the ankh for the female symbol.

Whether I am lesbian or not, it's really not his business, is it?

Oh, 3rd May is the date I allow myself to go back to yoga practice -- yoga is how I manage my stress. Whenever I go without yoga for a long stretch of time, I become irritable and ill-tempered.