What He Said

Comments

1
Kids get it. Gay marriage isn't going to be weird for them; homophobia will be the thing they don't understand.
2
The same goes for Chaz Bono on DWTS. What will you tell your children? I can't imagine. He's hardly the heaviest or ugliest man to ever compete. I'm not clear why you'd have to say anything at all...

I'd have a way harder time explaining to children that one day they'll be old enough to have their faces melt and fall off like Wayne Newton.
3
This also brings up the legitimate point that if you're not comfortable talking to your child about things that happen in the world, they're better off not having you as a parent in the first place. Sex happens. Some parents even remember it as the event that started their parenthood. If you can't talk about it, don't have it.
4
How will two gay parents explain heterosexuality to their kid?

Dads, you mean people do it...with people from other sexes?!

Eeeeyyyyewwww...
5
Will say as an aside: All of the "Louie" TV episodes are must see. Amazing, funny, heart-breaking stuff.
6
@5, I'm with you. Such a mensch.
7
Well said Mr. C.K.!!!
8
I'll take 'Not Universally Thought of As Attractive Straight Men Who I Would Do Whatever He Wanted to Please Him" for $200, Alex.

Seriously (and completely separate from our agreement on the gay marriage issue) I don't know what is about Louis CK, but I'm so attracted to his talent and mind -- or at least as it appears from afar -- that I have the type of feelings for him that's usually reserved for the more shallow parts of me. Celebrities are typically just like more famous attractive people I pass on the street -- if I'm feeling particularly lizard brained, I may think of them in a "fantasy fuck or not" way and that's all. But Louis CK makes me feel like I do for guys I'm crushing on because of their brains and attitudes, which is basically only ever been reserved for guys I'm already in love with. (Because I'm so fucked up that my boundaries are always way up so I can't even think about somebody that way until I've already been given the green light.)
9
Years ago, my friend's 5 year old daughter asked what "gay" was. Her parents explained that sometimes two men or two women love each other and want to live together.

The 5 year old thought about it for a moment, and said. "Oh, ok. What's for dinner?"

Kids are not as fragile as parents think.
10
@9 - They're certainly less fragile than their idiot parents.
11
I'm also in love with Louis CK - and yes my wife knows.
This is a great argument but if ever used in the attempt to demonstrate to someone what foolish pussies they are being don't call the kid ugly or shitty because that will become the argument - not marriage.
12
Fuck I love Louis. I just posted the video of that quote on my facebook a couple days ago.
13
@9 I had the same sort of conversation with my Mother when I was about four years old. (I believe I had asked why an Uncle of mine wasn't married.) It seemed like common sense. Two people loved each other and wanted to hang out a lot. I think I was older when I asked about the mechanics of how two people of the same gender might have sex. I thought it was gross, but I also thought the idea of a man and a woman having sex was pretty gross too.
14
Homophobes act as if they are going to have to explain the mechanics of gay sex to a toddler. When their young progeny sees a Disney Princess get married to her Prince Charming, do these parents feel the need to explain to him or her the mechanics of straight sex?
16
Like button.

You know what fucks up my home life? When my imaginary kids ask me, "Daddy Fnarf, why does Timmy say he's a Methodist"? All I can say is, "Nimrod, some people are sick. Don't hate them, pity them. And don't touch them." (yes, my imaginary son is named "Nimrod").
17
I got push-polled to see what I thought of the idea that kindergarten teachers might be teaching my children about "the gay lifestyle." Criminey. As if they'll be pulling out diagrams of sex acts, rather than just welcoming Billy's gay parents into the classroom on the same terms as Jill's straight parents.

Also, my attraction to Louis CK is like my attraction to Dan -- fodder for many hot fantasies, but totally unrealizable, alas.
18
@16 Your imaginary son is giant, mutant hating, robot?
19
I like the sentiment, but I don't think with all the "kid insults" that quote is going to make much traction with those on the fence.

The point I like to make is this: suppose I wait to get married until your kid IS old enough for you to discuss homosexuality with him. It's finally okay with you for me to go ahead. But you know what? Somewhere else is another parent with a younger kid who "isn't ready." There's an endless supply of kids being born, growing up, etc. and there's always going to be somebody in this country who doesn't feel their kid is ready to hear about or see gay people.

It's not reasonable to insist that I wait until everyone is comfortable - because that day is never going to come, is it?
20
@18 - NERD!

(also, you forgot Purple)
21
Such honesty from Mr C.K. (or anybody for that matter) does my heart good.

Simple and to the point. I like that.
22
@14, 17, my thoughts exactly, and very well put.

I'm glad some kids get it that gays can love each other and want to live together. My own experience with my (8-year-old) daughter, currently fully in her Disney Princess phase, was different. We're in the Netherlands, so her school more or less tells her the right things; but the other kids in the school, that's a different story. So when she was told what gays were and came to me for confirmation, she was all "oh that's icky!" My reaction was to ask her why. I found her answer interesting. Paraphrasing a little and editing out the hesitations and false starts, it was something like "because then they are too similar, so there is no mystery". Plus: "I would never want that, yuck!".

I was struck by her intensity -- I assume it was from the other schoolkids.

Something that may have changed her mind was a visit by a couple of lesbian colleagues a few months ago -- they stayed one night with us. My daughter was a bit surprised but seemed to react well to the idea that the two ladies in question were 'in love with each other'.
23
Since my child is at the, "no, honey, we don't eat the dog" stage, it's not yet an issue. But for me, it will never be an issue - who gives a shit? It's not my business, and if my daughter has gay friends or friends whose parents are gay, I'll treat them the same as her straight friends - i.e., with suspicion, and subject to my general disdain for humanity as a whole but fine once they prove they're not out to bully/harass/intimidate/steal from/make fun of/etc. her.

Also, yes EricaP, I have what my husband refers to as my "Dan Problem". Totally unrealizeable, and no-one seems to have even bothered to slash him online with anyone! The shame!
24
Just discovered his show, Louie, streaming on Netflix. Judging from the first couple episodes, I'd compare it to Curb Your Enthusiasm in terms of quality, so pretty darn hilarious.
25
@22, I recall from my years-ago studying of human development that kids go through a stage in which they gender stereotype like mad. It's a way for them to make sense of the world--a huge, unpredictable world over which they have little to no control.

As with most things, positive role models and genuinely engaging with the kid on the subject at an appropriate level resolve the issue. They learn, grow, and figure stuff out. Just like they do with everything.

Thanks for doing the heavy lifting. :-) Thanks to all SLOG parents for the hard work y'all do raising kiddos.
26
@23 - sounds like a creative project for you to take up! Louis CK and Dan? Or maybe Dan and Steve from Blue's Clues? I say that because just last night I watched the most darling video of Steve looking back on that time of his life...
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CwmtkFPYX…
27
And then I had to watch him doing the "Mail Time" dance about a gazillion times. "It makes me want to wag my tail" ooh, yeaahh...
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xFL7TyXeF…
28
Oh for chrissakes. Back in the '50's, good parents didn't want to talk to their kids about why the neighbor's daughter Suzie went away for awhile, 'cause she got knocked up. Grow up, be a parent and get over yourselves Xtians!
But don't forget- if you mention two lesbians or gay men, your kids will go gay for sure.
29
There's a lot of free Louis on Hulu. He's a comic genius and maybe just a genius.
30
In ten years gay marriage will about as controversial to most people as smoking pot or doing it doggy style is today.

And it will be the same culturally irrelevant class of sanctimonious dip shits who get worked up about it tomorrow as do today.
31
It's way funnier if you see the whole video:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HtJ_sDRRV…
32
thanks to Louis CK I have started thinking of other people's children as 'their shitty kids.' I love kids and think this in an affectionate way, and I am terrified that this is going to come out of my mouth one day.
33
@14 - THANK YOU! I use the "Disney Princess" argument all the time to combat the "but what do I tell the children" arguement.
34
Where is that awesome video where the kid finds out that someone has two dads and then invites them to play ping pong? I liked that.
35
Our children are old enough to buy the "It Gets Better Project" for their friends and their school's GSA. Maybe some of their ease came from being on the sidewalk by the Keller Auditorium that shining day in Portland, but they asked about the couples getting married, and it was the best gift to explain how families can look different but the feelings are still the same. So marriage equality is easy, has been for awhile now, but homophobia still remains something that they can't grasp.

@ ankylosaur,

The "Disney Princess" stage can for some little girls, so I hear, come complete with the wish for a prince. Two princes could appear odd to her, with such a lovely princess around. "Disney Princess" stage was very short at our house, our daughter was much more enchanted with Jean Louise "Scout" Finch (To Kill a Mockingbird) and Mia Winchell (A Mango-Shaped Space) who have their reign as favorite characters (and books). I'm glad to hear she was comfortable with your guests.
36
We should ban algebra because so many parents do not know how to explain it to their kids.
37
@36 lol
38
We should ban the word "metatarsals" because a mother can't explain it to her three-year-old kid.
They shall instead be called "leg-end bones".
39
I remember when marriage equality came to my state. I was out on the playground with the 7th graders and one girl announced, "I am going to marry [Kayla]." There were several other kids hanging around, and I could hear what they were thinking. They were thinking, "You can't do that, you're both girls...no, wait, you can do that. It's legal now." I could tell they thought that because there was this very brief pause, in which nothing was said, just this tiny tiny moment of tension. And then everyone relaxed and happily went on with whatever they were doing. No one said anything, but I think we all were aware of what had just happened. God, that was a great moment.
40
@4 Hey Supreme ruler: go suck your mother's asshole!

How do straight parents explain gay sex to their gay children?
Oh yeah, they don't.
41
On a much more positive note. Louis C.K. is a hottie!!!!
42
@40, you know, I read the comment at 4 as being satire. And thus, really funny.
43
I knew that my older brother(by 7 yrs) was gay when I never saw him with women. I just came out and asked him. It was 1986. He passed away 3 days after his 40th birthday from complications from AID's in 2002. When my oldest son came home from D&D sleep over one night during his sophomore year of high school, he said there was a problem with one of his friends. There was a group of 6 guys and one girl and they were all really close. Just so happens that one of the guys chose that night to come out to all his friends. Things got weird after that. This group of friends had been close since 1st week of freshman year. I asked my son if he was the same person an hour before they all knew? He is a very intellectual thinker. He came home from school, gave me a kiss and hug then told me thank you for planting the seed. They ALL graduated together as close, if not closer, in 2005. They all remain close friends, even though they are all in different parts of the country. They all excepted each other for who they truly were. I guess it depends on how you choose to raise your children, in the real world or your imaginary world?
44
I knew that my older brother(by 7 yrs) was gay when I never saw him with women. I just came out and asked him. It was 1986. He passed away 3 days after his 40th birthday from complications from AID's in 2002. When my oldest son came home from D&D sleep over one night during his sophomore year of high school, he said there was a problem with one of his friends. There was a group of 6 guys and one girl and they were all really close. Just so happens that one of the guys chose that night to come out to all his friends. Things got weird after that. This group of friends had been close since 1st week of freshman year. I asked my son if he was the same person an hour before they all knew? He is a very intellectual thinker. He came home from school, gave me a kiss and hug then told me thank you for planting the seed. They ALL graduated together as close, if not closer, in 2005. They all remain close friends, even though they are all in different parts of the country. They all excepted each other for who they truly were. I guess it depends on how you choose to raise your children, in the real world or your imaginary world?
45
Great to see Dan acknowledging Louis CK. He's the funniest, and most humane, comic working currently--a damned tricky combination to pull off. I got into his show this summer (thank you DVR) and it is totally worth checking out.

And Erica? Who knows--of all celebrities, he appears to be one of the most approachable. Lady fantasies regarding him aren't nearly as unlikely as they are about happily married guys like Jon Stewart or Dan (or dubiously married guys like Tom Cruise).
46
I will NEVER understand the reasoning behind anyone opposing marriage equality. I've tried...yet it all seems shallow & ends up as homophobia.
47
@42 I suspect that you are the equivalent of a 1939 kapo. Of course you'd find that funny! Good for you!
48
may the almightycome to our rescue? i don't know where the world is roolling to.
49
@46, I have often asked myself the same question. It also never made any sense to me.

The best 'theoretical' answer I've heard about was based on a flag analogy. The flag is an important symbol, which should be treated with respect; it has important functions and uses. Now, if you use the flag for some trivial or unworthy use, this in principle doesn't hurt the flag: it still continues to be used for its important, symbolic functions, despite your trivial uses. Still, what you're doing is not "nice": you're using the flag -- an important symbol -- for things it wasn't designed to use, for things that go against what it stands for. Even though nobody else will suffer (and may not even know that you're doing it), still it's "bad."

Still not convincing, of course. But it's the closest I've come to understanding the rationale behind the "it damages the institution of marriage!" argument.

Now, symbolism and all notwithstanding, if you ask me what I think is really going on...

I think conservatives aren't really afraid that marriage equality will somehow damage their own marriages. I think what they really fear is the "normalization" of gays. Because they think that gay people are evil people trying to do evil things, so you shouldn't "normalize" them. By doing that, you give them free reign to "recruit" and "convert" straights (because we all know that's how gays reproduce, right?), for instance.

Maybe they fear, at an instinctive level, that gays are out to get them -- to change everybody, every single straight person, into gays. The "gay agenda" is ultimately that, right? To make all straight people gay.

Or maybe (if gays aren't that evil), at least to make "gay" the new normal and "straight" the new pervert. So that we'll end up with a society in which gay overlords harass and bully and persecute poor timid straights, more or less... ahn... like straight bullies do to gays today.

Why are gays evil? Well, because they're icky and eeewy (remember the "wiggling"?), like those disgusting alien invaders in old '50s and '60s movies. Or because the bible says so (at least my pastor told me it does). Ultimately, I guess, because they're Other.
50
ankylosaur @49, yeah, those same folk that are insecure enough in their own sexuality that they are intimidated by non-heteronormative people, those same folk that might use the "flag analogy" to cover over their squick, they are the same people that repurpose the flag as tee-shirts and boxer shorts.
51
@50 yeah, indeed -- isn't that amazing? :-)

Perhaps I should have used Christian symbols instead. Some people would say it is very, very offensive to use symbols like the Cross or the Bible for trivial uses -- paper weights, for instance. Or a "Jesus alarm clock". Or biblical action figures (Moses & Joshua to the rescue!). Because it banalizes/trivializes something that is really serious to those who believe in it, it's only a small step away from mockery, etc. etc. etc.

It still doesn't work, but perhaps it makes it easier to see what exactly those people are feeling.
52
@49-51, about why anyone would be against marriage equality. I used to think as you do. I used to say, "hey, letting gay people marry doesn't change your marriage."

And then I realized that it does. It totally does.

Allowing gay marriage disrupts the gendered understanding of marriage, where the husband earns more, is taller, leads while dancing, and gets the final word in arguments. Wives do more childcare and more housework, but don't repair equipment when it breaks down.

Gay marriage disrupts those expectations. You don't hear people say this so often anymore, but straights used to routinely ask about gay couples -- which one is the woman? which one is the man? Once gays marry, it underscores the arbitrariness of all the gendered expectations around marriage. One person doesn't have to be the tall one and earn more, while the other person tolerates sex and loves children.

Gay marriage does change all marriage -- in a good way, from my perspective. But I can see how some people might view it negatively.
53
The issue for these close-minded homophobes is not as simple as, "What do I tell my child when they ask what 'gay' means?"

Rather, it's coming up because these (universally religious) people have pounded into their children, since birth, that "gay" means "bad, sinful, immoral, going to hell." Even before the children learn about the existence of buttsex, they know that gayness is a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad thing.

So these poor, put-upon homophobes are fighting lifesaving progress, because they now have to explain to their already-indoctrinated children that gay people are allowed to be gay. They can even get married in a bunch of first world countries. And kiss in public! All out in the open, and everything! There are even some people who think that being gay is *gasp* okay! Even some people who aren't gay think that being gay is okay!

This is the kind of life-changing revelation that controlling fundamentalist parents absolutely despise. The longer they can keep their children from being exposed to alternative points of view, the better the chances that their child will end up being exactly the same as they are.

Unfortunately, this is not an exaggeration. Once you are forced to inform your child that people exist who disagree with mommy and daddy, you invite in all kinds of freethinking shenanigans and rebellion. Usually a child's discovery of their own free will occurs by age 11 or 12 regardless, but having a conversation like this at age 6 or 7 could bring it on a lot sooner.
54
@52, actually a very good point. I hadn't thought of that.

But then, why aren't the same people just as strongly against anything that reverts this order -- against stay-at-home dads, or breadwinning moms, for instance? They're against these things too, I'm sure, but not with the same revulsion, intensity, and disgust.

Which is why I think they react as if there's a threat that the gays want to force us all to be gay. That gay marriage is the first step towards forcing everybody to accept those gender-aberrant unions where you can't tell "who is the woman". It's not that "they're doing something disgusting" (they could shrug that away as bumbs being bums, and they don't feel threatened by bums), it's also "they're trying to contaminate us!".
55
@54 the fundamentalists are indeed very much against feminism. Last year they attacked the Girl Scouts for purported distributing radical lesbian materials promoting masturbation and sexual activity. The first link is an example of the uproar; the second link is a Salon article more or less debunking the rumors:
http://www.lifenews.com/2010/03/11/int-1…
http://life.salon.com/2011/05/18/girl_sc…
56
Mark in Colorado, I'm not sure how it's productive to compare me to a trustee in a concentration camp. Or for that matter, accurate.

I stand by my statement that if you read 4 as satire, it's funny. I'm not claiming that SRotU is Swift.
57
@53: Exactly. It's not that it's hard to explain, "Some boys fall in love with boys, some girls fall in love with girls," -- it's that they know they'll have trouble explaining why they think it's so wrong.

Option 1: "The Bible says it's wrong." "But why does it say that?" "Well, it also says that eating shrimp and wearing mixed fibers is wrong... It just DOES, okay?"
Option 2: Explaining about how icky gay sex is. Which, to a child, will sound just as icky as straight sex.

@52 and 54: Generally, the people who are against gay marriage are also against other things that cross traditional gender roles (Except where it suits them, eg. female Republican politicians). It's just that they're well aware it's not as socially acceptable to rail against things like female breadwinners.
58
54: But then, why aren't the same people just as strongly against anything that reverts this order -- against stay-at-home dads, or breadwinning moms, for instance? They're against these things too, I'm sure, but not with the same revulsion, intensity, and disgust.


@54: I was around during the '70s and the battles for the Equal Rights Amendment. When "whether women should be allowed to work outside the home" was the dominant social question, these same people were all rabidly against it. Nothing has changed in their attitudes about Uppity Women - just that they've lost that battle and moved on (for now). The battle against gays seems a bit more winnable at the moment, so they're focusing on that one. (History was against them back then and it still is now... but they refuse to admit it, poor things.)

But don't think they've forgotten those Uppity Women. When they seize power, those women are next in line for re-education, right after the gays.
59
People will always fear things they don't understand, so they don't want to talk to their kids becuase that fear breeds hate and slowly you have a fuck chain family of lack of information all because of one set of parents was too insecure to talk to their kids. I love Louis <3
60
@55, very disturbing links. Thanks for sharing them.

It seems nothing in America (at least not in politics) can be simply a discussion between people with different opinions. Everything has to be 'we have to avert the End of Civilization as We Know It', and Right Now!

It must be terrible to be a fundamentalist. So much fear.
61
I love it when parents throw out the line, "How will I explain this to my kids?". I always knew you were stupid, but now you've gone and removed all doubt by telling me you flat out don't have the brain power to come up with *anything*, whether truth or lie.
62
Louis CK says pretty much exactly what I do about gay marriage,

Right until he curses the children. For the record, trying to change someone's mind about anything will almost always fail at the point you attack their kids.

Kids will hear their parents' negative information and balance their own experience (say, with witnessing how nicely a couple treats their and other's children) to create what they ultimately believe. And that is why the anti-equality types are so vociferous, because the world is proving their point of view false. Time and again, point by point, the world is proving them, if not false then wrong. And ultimately it will be those "ugly" children who must find the truth.

Peace.
63
"If it doesn't have any effect on your life why do you care?" "...you don't want to talk to your ugly child for fuckin five minutes."

I agree that gay people should be able to get married. But your reasoning and strategy is obviously wrong. So people should be free to go around killing/raping as long as it doesn't affect you personally? Time to rethink your logic hombre.

Also insulting children won't win you any friends. Gay marriage is gaining traction and will eventually be instituted nationally. This will happen because straight people like me believe in equality and sympathize with the situation committed same sex couples find themselves in. Being just as hateful and rude as some of the Christian fundamentalists’ you have to deal with may be emotionally gratifying; But it's also counterproductive.


64
To all those decrying the use of profanity, especially referent to kiddos: I'm a little late to the Louis CK party, but isn't profanity a large part of his schtick? I have no beef with that; I cuss like a sailor myself.

No one is actually suggesting that we buy a billboard and slap that quote up there raw. No one is actually saying that quoting him verbatim to anti-equality folks is a good idea. Please stop picking nits out of strawmen.
65
If everybody in a room is sick, then nobody is considered sick, until a well person enters the room. If everyone in the room is gay. . .
66
If everyone in a room is sick, then nobody is considered sick until a well person walks in. Then he becomes the one who is sick. If everyone in a room is gay, then no one is sick, until a straight walks in. Then he becomes a homophobic.