Huffington Post reports on the hateful bullshit that went down at a high school in Pennsylvania last week...
A Pennsylvania high school has come under media scrutiny after a group of students organized an "Anti-Gay Day" in response to the nationally-observed Day of Silence. The Day of Silence, which has been officially organized by GLSEN (or the Gay, Lesbian & Straight Education Network) since 2001, encourages students and young adults to take a vow of silence in an effort to prompt officials to address the problem of anti-lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) bullying and harassment in their schools.
Although the Day of Silence was observed April 17 nationally, McGuffey High School in Claysville scheduled their related activities for Wednesday, April 15 because of a planned field trip, BuzzFeed is reporting. This prompted the group of students to ask classmates to wear flannel shirts and write "anti-gay" on their hands on Thursday, April 16, in protest, according to WPXI-TV. In addition, participants posted Bible verses on the lockers of students who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender (LGBT), the news station noted. Meanwhile, some encounters between students who participated and those who didn't even got physical, The Advocate pointed out, and snapshots of the flannel-clad group appeared on social media.
"We came into school on Thursday and found a lot of people wearing flannel and we couldn’t figure out why,” Zoe Johnson, a 16-year-old McGuffey High School who identifies as bisexual, told BuzzFeed's David Mack. "People started getting pushed and notes were left on people’s lockers. ...I got called a dyke, a faggot. They were calling us every horrible name you can think of."
More troubling still was an alleged "lynch list," which the group was reported to have circulated around the school.
So it looks like there is a bunch of extremely homophobic guys at McGuffey High. Hey, Science, what can you tell us about homophobic guys?
Is homophobia associated with homosexual arousal?
Adams HE1, Wright LW Jr, Lohr BA.
The authors investigated the role of homosexual arousal in exclusively heterosexual men who admitted negative affect toward homosexual individuals. Participants consisted of a group of homophobic men (n = 35) and a group of nonhomophobic men (n = 29); they were assigned to groups on the basis of their scores on the Index of Homophobia (W. W. Hudson & W. A. Ricketts, 1980). The men were exposed to sexually explicit erotic stimuli consisting of heterosexual, male homosexual, and lesbian videotapes, and changes in penile circumference were monitored. They also completed an Aggression Questionnaire (A. H. Buss & M. Perry, 1992). Both groups exhibited increases in penile circumference to the heterosexual and female homosexual videos. Only the homophobic men showed an increase in penile erection to male homosexual stimuli. The groups did not differ in aggression. Homophobia is apparently associated with homosexual arousal that the homophobic individual is either unaware of or denies.
Here's my advice for LGBT students and allies at McGuffey High: Print out a few hundred copies of the abstract of the study I quoted from above—a reputable, peer-reviewed study just published by the National Institutes of Health—and highlight the same parts I bolded. Then tape copies of the highlighted abstract to the lockers of all the boys who participated in "Anti-Gay Day" and hand out copies to everyone else at your school.
Will you be accusing the boys who wore flannel, assaulted queer students, posted antigay Bible verses on your lockers, and passed out that a "lynch list" of being gay themselves? Yes. Does that mean you're throwing "gay" around in an accusatory way? Yes. Does that mean you're accepting, for sake of argument, the homophobe's central premise, i.e., that there's something wrong with being gay? Yes it does.
But sometimes you have to fight fire with fire.
Since being perceived to be gay is the last thing these cowardly, bullying, homophobic shits want, letting the whole school know that science—SCIENCE!—has demonstrated a causal link between repressed homosexual desire and homophobic attitudes is an effective counterstrike. (And it's not the only study that's showed a link between homophobic feelings and homosexual desire.) Disseminating the results of this study will put the homophobes at McGuffey High on notice: When you engage in homophobic acts, you out yourself to your peers as gay or bi. Not openly gay, not the kind of gay kid who is brave enough to come out in high school, not an out and proud kind of gay. They're outing themselves as the conflicted and cowardly type of gay—the kind of "straight" dudes who exhibit "increases in penile circumference" when they watch gay porn. Chickenshits and closet cases.
By letting the entire student body know that science says being a homophobe is totally gay—gay as in the turned-on-by-homosexual-stimuli sense, not the gay-as-in-that-is-so-lame sense—will make these boys less likely to attack you. Because homophobia is gay.