The Queer Issue
Ban the Abs
A Few New Regulations for Gay "Art" Photographers and Their Patrons
The Queer Issue
- Divorced From Reality: The Constitutional Amendment We Really Need Would Protect Us from Family-Values Hypocrites—and Protect Family-Values Hypocrites from Themselves
- George W. Bush's effort to write anti-gay bigotry into the U.S. Constitution died in the U.S. Senate earlier this month. That came as a relief, as did Tim Eyman's failure to get his anti-gay-rights referendum on the ballot in Washington State. But we haven't seen the last of the federal anti-gay-marriage amendment. (Or Eyman.)
- Pride 2006 Events Calendar: Pride Week Festivities, from the Broadway Grill's ABBA tribute to Wildrose's Wet T-Shirt Contest
- Pride Events
- Ban Heterosexual Complacency: Meet the Oppressed Sexual Majority
- Amend It to End It: A Risky Amendment Could Stop the Emerging Anti-Gay-Adoption Movement in Its Tracks
- The Fag-Hag Emancipation Act of 2006: The First Thing We're Banning Is the Term "Fag Hag." The Next Thing to Go Is That Gay Ex-Nazi Trucker in My Living Room.
- Marry Me a Little: The Civil Union Instigation Act
- I Am Not a Butt Plug
- The Seven Year Ditch
- No Queer Child Left Behind: We Need to Remember "Our" Kids During Pride
- Ban the Abs: A Few New Regulations for Gay "Art" Photographers and Their Patrons
- PRO & CON: Ban Girls from Engaging in Drunken Displays of Faux-Bisexuality
- Scummy Film: It's Time for a Moratorium on Bad Gay Movies
- Life Sentence: A Fitting Punishment for Political Closet Cases
- Ex-Ex-Gay Reparations
- Legislating Tolerance: Making Health Clubs a Safe Space for Heterosexual Men
- Waiting Periods: Legislatures Across the Country Have Approved Waiting Periods for Gun Purchases and Abortions; We'd Like to Propose These Queer-Specific Waiting Periods
- Three Strikes, You're Out: A Do-It-Yourself Guide to Unpardonable Gay Crimes
- Comic: Woodland Creatures Speak Up for the Appropriating Names of Wildlife Restriction
Gay photographers of a certain coffee-table-book ilk: The time is now. You know who you are. Put down your cameras. Shoo the sinewy models from your studios, even if you have to send them into the streets naked and shivering, clinging only to the chintzy linens you were hoping would look like Renaissance draperies on film. Listen up, because it is a new day for male nude photography, a day when dreadful soft-core porn is no longer mistaken for art! I'm talking to you, Herb Ritts (okay, you're not with us anymore, but your images are), you, Robert Laliberté, you, Anthony Boccaccio, Chris Reynolds, Dylan Ricci. You!
Let us begin in the middle, with the abs. Down with the tyrannical geography of the six-pack! Always the same hills. Same valleys. Every six-pack is alike. Let none ever again be committed to film. However, let this not seem to endorse a practice that some literal minds like to call "shirtcocking." Others like to call it "Donald Ducking," because the Disney bird only wore a shirt and bared all below. From here on out, if you use a shirt, you must use underwear! No more danglers in a haplessly half-dressed tableau!
Speaking of the dangler, if you decide to include it, keep in mind its penchant for hogging the spotlight, and your responsibility for accounting for its appearance and behavior. In this matter, we decree a 10 percent increase in underwear pictures for each photographer. Undergarments are underappreciated as sculptural and structural props. If you choose to use bikinis that ride high or follow steeper angles than the hipbones, your camera will be taken from you.
Above all, and we hope that you are still paying attention: No assholes. This is a shady region. No matter how you endeavor, how you labor to turn your model's body into a bent abstraction, you will not make art from this region. Unless it is a very, very funny art.
Just as light rippling across ripped bodies rarely constitutes art, black-and-white film does not dignify the acting out of ridiculous fantasies, allegories, metaphors, or similes involving animals or animal-like behavior, masks, foliage, musical instruments, or assless chaps. Henceforth, the law requires that these scenes be shot in full, living, punishing color.
Please do not allow your models to stand with arms slightly away from their bodies, as though they are so huge they cannot put them down, unless they are so huge they cannot put them down.
We recognize the popularity of such themes as cowboys, sailors, laborers in hardhats, Romans, wrestling, bondage, and men of the law. These are established conventions you may work within. We have noticed, however, another developing theme: the practice of a model wearing a lampshade on his head, especially a black model with a white lampshade. We do not wish to consider what this symbolism might mean. We simply need it to end.
If you must engage in surrealism, you are on your own. When your model has been transformed into a white-faced industrial rabbit jester with henna tattoos and an oversized penis-substitute shaped like a squid, you have left satire behind. Yes, that is a real photograph. I'm calling you out, Laliberté.
And you, the patrons: You're the real perps propping up these pretensions. Whom do you think you're fooling with that headless bohunk framed above your couch lifting his shirt above his nipples and running his other hand over his abs? No matter how golden the light that falls on him, he's still just the guy you wish you were sleeping with. Every dinner-party host who displays his sophistication by displaying a coffee-table book of arching, three-legged men; glistening tangles of unidentifiable body parts; beefy hands spread coyly over crotches or holding daisy bouquets; or tanned men doubled over with asses instead of heads will be required, within seven (7) days of said dinner, to attend no fewer than three (3) screenings of 9 ½ Weeks and to purchase a piece of real art from a local artist.
No exceptions will be tolerated. Violators will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.