Dude, that's so not gay

Jesse's and I's mutual friend have made a few blunders that are making us reconsider our friendship with him. See, I surround myself with liberal people and sometimes forget that I am living smack dab in "The Bible Belt", where bigotry - overt, covert, and everything in between - is deeply seeded within the mind of the average Midwest citizen.

He's made casual remarks of how he "wished that he hadn't watched that documentary on how Planned Parenthood tortures its aborted fetuses" (I was too tired to fact-check his ass during the conversation so the comments went mostly ignored.) A few racist comments that are along the line of "I'm not racist BUT-". There's been a few homophobic comments that he doesn't get how gay men would want to have sex when lesbians are just "like, so hot, man!"

That homophobia finally entered our personal realm. Last week, Jesse had said that perhaps a few years down the line, we could be roommates.

After that, sheer silence from our friend. As the days went on without any further contact, Jesse and I began to worry.

This man has serious life-threatening health issues, along with deep depression, that could easily murder him. Multiple calls and texts conveying our concern went ignored. Yesterday I finally texted him that I was going to send a Wellness Check in for him. (Basically where the police come in to make sure there's not a corpse sitting in the living room.)

It was then that our friend hunted me down and explained the silence. The roommate conversation had left him worried that Jesse had been hitting on him and he just didn't know how to respond.

I was like, DUDE. SERIOUSLY?! We frantically worry that you're fucking DEAD and you don't respond because you assume Jesse's going to want to nail you at some point??!! I didn't say that, of course. One thing my mother did teach me well was how to be polite. But as the last day has passed, I find myself more and more irritated with our friend's comment.

Jesse was immediately, extremely irritated with the relayed conversation, stating that he is too old for this bullshit. That he is tired of explaining himself, over and over again, to various "no homo, bro" sorts of people.

I'm getting too old for this shit, too. And too old to fight with people whom (either out of lack of exposure or willful ignorance) find it acceptable to not only believe these things, but to spew them out.

I asked Pat yesterday about the whole "tolerating differences between friends" idea. I asked him "Are THESE the kinds of differences you're supposed to tolerate, or is it more like 'I want to go to Burger King and my friend wants to go to McDonald's' sort of differences?"

The latter, Pat said. The latter sorts of things are what you tolerate, NOT remarks that convey disgust at some of your own personal beliefs. Especially, especially when they start interfering with your own personal lives, as it did with Jesse and I.

I understand this is part of the struggle when finding friends in such a conservative part of the country. Our friend was smart enough to say that he "probably misread it", but then followed that with "but I didn't know what to say".

The correct answer would have been a text that said "I'm going through some personal shit and just need some alone time. Btw, I'm also not dead."

It's disappointing. It gets to where I just want to point blank ask new people about their social views and where they stand on "sensitive issues" such as race, religion, and gay rights. It gets to where I don't want to expend the energy of establishing a friendship (which is a FUCKTON of work for adults in general, and especially people like Jesse and I) just to get blindsided by a big-ass dose of bigotry.

I think the mutual conclusion between Jesse and I is a fade-out of this person's life. I can handle some conservatism in a friend. Pro-choice but would never have an abortion yourself? Acceptable difference. Being completely straight yourself, but are okay with the fact that gay men exist and have sex lives? Acceptable. Not had a lot of ethnic friends and are confused by their culture? Being as this is the whitest of all major American cities, that is also somewhat acceptable.

Refusing to let your friends know if you're alive or dead because you're worried about some dude hitting on you?

NOT acceptable.

This entry was originally posted at http://quirkytizzy.dreamwidth.org/1073274.html
Some people really need to learn there's nowhere safety from getting molested (even if you're male) and that you need to actively solve such issues if they come up. Man, this sounds heavily like somebody who's overwhelmed by the thought that he hasn't got the omnipotence of God reserved for his life and that, if he wants to have it as his own power, he's gotta do something for it...
Yeah, punish and forbid, so that nobody's more in control of his life than me...
And that's why I can't wait to get the hell out of the Midwest. Just when I think I can't be surprised by the blatant stupidity and casual racism...I am, yet again, surprised.

And see, I don't do the fade thing. Just because you grow up wrapped in a cultural cocoon, you don't have the right to walk through the world in ignorance. I would break up with him the same way you break up with a bad boyfriend. If you fade, then he'll never know that his views are offensive. He might just think that the two of you fell out of touch because of illness, or worse yet, he might think that Jessee *was* hitting on him and is now ashamed or embarrassed.

I don't believe in mollycoddling people who hold backward beliefs because unless you challenge their worldview, who will?
I've had to do the same with some Trump supporters because I just can't even. You can't be friends with someone if you don't respect them, and vice versa.
I think you ABSOLUTELY should say what you thought. " DUDE. SERIOUSLY?! We frantically worry that you're fucking DEAD and you don't respond because you assume Jesse's going to want to nail you at some point??!!" I think that is an absolutely acceptable response to someone's inane homophobia. And if its rude, SO WHAT! People need to get over themselves. If he thought he was being hit on, he needs to just say, hey, I'm strait, you know that right? or, how about "you're not hitting on me are you?? LOL" I am way too old to dance around people it seems. I made the huge mistake of not being brutally honest with Mrs Moose, and I think that influences my thoughts today. If I have any interest in being friends with someone, at some point you just have to say WTF? Level the playing field and let the chips fall where they may.