And Who Teaches Straight Teenagers That Being Gay Is a Choice?


this came from Reddit. WHY DOES NOBODY SOURCE ANYMORE?!?!

Probably nothing if they aren't made aware of it, so let's make sure they are and that they know that we're pissed about it. There isn't a direct email for the school, but there is an email that goes to the superintendent's office on the homepage at the bottom. There are also phone/fax numbers listed at the top.

Let them know what's going on at their school and that they need to do something about it.
Probably nothing if they aren't made aware of it, so let's make sure they are and that they know that we're pissed about it. There isn't a direct email for the school, but there is an email that goes to the superintendent's office on the homepage at the bottom. There are also phone/fax numbers listed at the top.

Let them know what's going on at their school and that they need to do something about it.
(Sorry for the double post!)
I just realized something: the people who insist being gay is a choice, who are the biggest homophobes, are the people who are choosing not to be gay, aka they are gay but mortified.
here's the source, including their actual names…

here is a link to all of their profiles involved on facebook…
here's another lakewood washington…
Using Facebook makes you gay.

There I said it and I hope those kids realize it. One day it's Facebook and the next day you're giving head to your football buddies in the back of a Ford Probe.
This stuff happens daily in our schools. I don't think I went a day teaching I didn't hear “thats gay” “shut up fag” “stop being so gay” "this homework is gay”. I and a small group of teachers were the only ones that would put our foot down on this type of verbal hate. Even more tragic, the administration would never take action! The one time they did is when a kid left my class saying “Mr. Leighton is a Faggot”. He got “Study Hall" from only my class for three days. Pathetic!
Why does this kid even bother saying sorry? They are clearly very secure in their illogical beliefs, and judging by the 17 likes and supportive comments they must know their comments were going to get a warm reception. Semi-polite pseudo-apologetic bullshit designed to distance them from the kids who physically and verbally assault their peers in the way he/she is happily condoning.
Not sure why you bothered "hiding" their names - they're all totally still legible.

Other than that, agree about the post.
I'd like to see one of these little shits being bullied for being perceived as gay.
This stuff happens daily in our schools. I don't think I went a day teaching I didn't hear “thats gay” “shut up fag” “stop being so gay” "this homework is gay”. I and a small group of teachers were the only ones that would put our foot down on this type of verbal hate. Even more tragic, the administration would never take action! The one time they did is when a kid left my class saying “Mr. ----- is a Faggot”. He got “Study Hall" from only my class for three days. Pathetic!
Even if being gay was a choice, why does that mean gays deserve to be punished for it? Some kids choose to be band geeks or chess nerds...they dont deserve to be bullied over it, either.

But if I remember high school correctly, logic is of little importance. Just pick on the other guy so that no one sees how weak you are.
Sort of on-topic and while I want to share this horror (you have to read all the way to the end but just in case you start throwing up in your mouth and can't make it, it's a FAKE story about how Christian kids are being harassed by gay activists and killing themselves).


In case you can't get to the bottom, here's the final, disgusting paragraph:

"These eight cases are all true except for one thing: The Christians who were bullied by gays and gay activists are all still alive. Not a single one has committed suicide. That is because they have centered their lives around Jesus Christ, rather than their sexual identity. And no amount of bullying can change my mind about that."

Of all the terrible things that can happen to a person, neither being gay nor being bullied for being gay can compare with having to attend high school in El Reno, Oklahoma. Hope these kids are good at pumping gas.
@15 *headkerplooie*
@5: Sable Verity, one of my all-time favorite Seattle-based bloggers, came to the same conclusion regarding politicians here:…

I think you're both onto something.
To witness young people and such disgusting behavior makes me want to vomit. Seriously.
@10 - in this vernacular "Sorry" doesn't mean "I apologize" but more like "This is just the way it is too bad for you"
Dan, Where did you "learn" that a being gay is a not a choice?

Just because you say so?

Please cite research.

Saying it over and over doesn't make it true.

Not in the Real World, at least.....
unedited picture from dans post:…

@18 -- I've made that assumption for years. It seems the more publicly and ferociously one denounces "the gay lifestyle" the closer the probability approaches 1.
@21 - I NEVER chose to be gay. Now prove me wrong, asshat.
... and hey, that includes a number of the trolls here... !
"I would like to know what steps the administration at El Reno High School plans to take to make sure that El Reno is a safe place for LGBT students."

You mean, what steps are taken to keep them from joining the 20% of homosexuals with AIDS?
Where do you get that these people are "jocks"?

Sorry, I was an athlete in high school, and I was not a bigot. And while some of my peers were very obviously homophobic, it was in no way limited to so-called jocks. I know it sounds nitpicky, and maybe the jocks at your high school gave you the most grief, but I got tired of people assuming that I was some hateful meathead because I was an athlete when I was in high school, and I'm tired of hearing it now.
I have a serious question and I'm hoping I won't be dragged over too many rhetorical hot coals for putting it out here. But I have to ask: Does solid, undeniable research exist that being gay is completely and totally preordained at birth? The latest brain research I've seen leans a certain way (that it is preordained), but is inconclusive about it, in the way that careful science avoids conclusions. And the question of nature/nurture is still open as well, as far as I know, from a scientific point of view. Tell me if I'm totally wrong on this and there has been some definitive, widely accepted study, but we still just don't know exactly why or how people are gay, and whether they are "born gay" is still mostly conjecture.

Hence, I'm a little worried about the current central argument of the gay rights movement being "people can't help being gay," because I don't think we really know that yet. I'd rather the argument be "born gay...made gay...who cares? Love is love is love."

I mean really, does it matter? Instead of trying to convince people of something which may or may not be true--and risking the science turning around on you, which science often does--the better way forward might be asking "so what if it IS a choice? What makes the choice invalid? Why is it that we can't choose for ourselves who we want to love?"

People will always be able to lie to themselves about reality, no matter how much evidence comes in about the "gay brain" (see: evolution), but everyone understands, even pea-brained students in rural Oklahoma, the importance of love. Maybe that's the way forward.

Or maybe I'm just an insane optimist. Anyway, somebody enlighten me.

oh no!

if we comment on Slog people will think we're GAY!

and then SUICIDE will be our only option!!!
That school is probably going do... nothin.
I gotta say, I think it has to do with more than church.

It should be uncontroversial to observe that a lot of homophobia is an manifestation of rigid gender norms and expectations, the belief that masculinity and femininity have to be policed. Sometimes it's an expression of anxiety about one's own gender conformity. We certainly find that kind of policing in many churches. But we can't pretend that churches are the only social institutions telling young dudes that they gotta behave like DUDES or there's something wrong with them. It's in the media, in the culture, everywhere.

An example: one classic homophobic bullying trope among teenage boys is making fun of the sexually inexperienced by calling them gay, while boasting of one's own sexual conquests. Yet homophobic churches generally teach conservative sexual ethics and abstinence. So it can't JUST be religion.

Some of the time, they're not bashing fags because they thing gays are sinners, but because fag's existence destabilizes gender binaries in the rest of society.
@14: So very, very true.

It's also worth noting that *anything* that makes you different that isn't sports or music, is something that will attract bullying. I'm sure these same people would also pick on the Mennonite kids, if there were any around (they usually go to Mennonite schools), then justify their own religious intolerance by saying that religion is a choice.

They are, to be honest, looking for *any* reason to shove people into lockers. Because they're the kind of sociopaths that enjoy hurting other people.
@28 Bisexuals choose to be gay (sometimes). :)
Disgusting... these are the new breed of racists and homophobes, channeling exactly what they hear at home, in their churches, in movies and on TV. Insecurity is sooooo unattractive.

You are 1000% correct about the current state of research.

Dan knows no more about what makes people gay than he does about suicide.

If determined homoliberal researchers with a point to make "discover" "proof" that homosexuality is biological the inevitable conclusion will be that it is a genetic defect- like sickle cell or Type 1 diabetes.
A genetic condition that prevents the body from functioning normally, in this case from engaging in reproductive activity.
Of course there is no physical reason homosexuals can't reproduce heterosexually.
So maybe science will go back to classing homosexuality as a mental disease.
The way it did before activists (not research...) put pressure on them and cowed them to change their codes.

Science rules.

Except when it is perverted by homoliberal terrorists.

Then it drools.......
If you could choose it, 3/4 of people would be gay. (Guys would get to have easy sex all the time and women would get to be with sympathetic partners who like foreplay.)
if gay WERE a choice, i'd be gay. every time.
I wasn't aware that it was on Reddit. Someone emailed it to me. I searched "El Reno High School" on Google, and in blogs, looking to see if it was already out there, un-redacted. Didn't find it. So I redacted info, actual names, so as not to be accused of bullying these morons.

The person who sent it to me said it came from El Rey high school—so I spent most of my time tracking down the actual name of the school, which I did by searching Facebook accounts for the whole gang here. If I had found it on Reddit—rest assured I would've been delighted to credit it and post. It would've saved me 45 minutes.

I will add a credit now that I know where it came from.
@35 Where do these homoliberal terrorists hang out? And what do they do, plant pink trees on the highway?
"I would like to know what steps the administration at El Reno High School plans to take to make sure that El Reno is a safe place for LGBT students."

You're talking about suicide, right Dan?

Here's a plan:
(a damn good one....)

I read on Slog that homosexual kids are 4X as likely to commit suicide.
I also read on Slog that people who go to church are 1/4 as likely to commit suicide.
(I read it on Slog. It must be true.)

so make the homosexual kids go to church.

Golob can explain that 4X times 1/4X will make the church going homosexuals commit suicide at the same rate as regular kids.

That's fair, right?
These kids are homophobic little shits; that is obvious and unanimous.

That being said, why are we patrolling facebook for this stuff? Of course there's homophobia there - as well as racism, sexism, anti-catholicism, anti-islam, antisemitism, anti abortion hate, pro abortion hate, and God knows what else.

Why should we try to police it - and moreover, why should we care what some little shits in California think?

People are hateful - it's in our nature. Trying to change that would be like trying to stop the sun coming up in the morning.

Let's put it this way. If being gay is a choice in any way, shape, or form, why is it exactly that the gay fundie christians out there can't pray away the gay, no matter how hard they try? That's a case for incentive to choose different, if I ever saw one.

I don't think it matters one way or the other if it's pre-ordained from birth, or part of upbringing, or a peak sexual experience at the age of 8, or hormones in your milk. the fact is that it *can't be changed*. If it *could*, it *would* have already.
@28 It doesn't matter if it is nature or nurture, it is NOT a choice. The word for people for whom being gay is a choice is "bisexual." To suggest otherwise is just, frankly, ignorant. Yes, science sometimes reverses its decisions, but the concept of "choice" has nothing to do with the physiological or psychological origins of homosexuality.
Damn, Riz. Augh. Thank you.
Meanwhile: the real story here is that high school kids in places like El Paso, Oklahoma feel brave enough/safe enough to publicly demonstrate their support for LGBT kids and are encouraging their peers to follow suit, to the point where S____ A____ "got three things saying to wear purple".

We're winning!
It's important to note that even if sexual orientation isn't determined at birth that does not make it a choice. The nature/nurture argument doesn't discuss choice.

I never understood the "choice" argument against homosexuality. I am gay so I'm aware it's not a choice, but even if it was, so what? There is nothing inherently wrong with me having sex with women, lots of guys do it. Why would a male homophobe not understand why I would want to have sex with women if he finds women so irresistible? I'm agreeing with his viewpoint, so how is that "wrong," choice or not?

Also by saying that you think homosexuality is a choice, you're essentially saying that you could be susceptible to gay sex under the right conditions. Why would a homophobe want to admit this?
@ 38,
Actually the conclusion would probably not be that its a genetic defect as plenty of other species exhibit homosexual/transgender/ everything in between behavior and it is actually advantageous.

Because there are in fact so many species that exhibit, shall we say, non-straight, tendencies, its probably not a far cry to say its actually been selected for throughout evolution.……

those are just 2 of many articles about the subject

@Dan Savage - Even if there is an un-redacted picture floating around, your original reasoning for blurring the names is sound. Nothing good can come from posting the names of minors online. Especially if you're considerably less anonymous than Reddit
@50 Absolutely.
I know most churches deserve the blame and criticism being heaped upon them, but really, just because you're so singularly focused on religion-bashing, you're letting the actual most likely source off the hook: parents.
As a straight kid, homophobia like this made me feel sad then as it does now. What bastards, kids can be.
This is how I look at it. Whenever someone has told me to my face that being gay is a choice, I respond by asking them how they made the decision to be straight. I don't know why I am straight, and I don't know why men look or smell so lovely to me. I cannot recall making a choice. No-one yet has been able to tell me how they chose to be straight yet. I respond that if they cannot recall their own decision to be straight, then it seems terribly immoral to claim that others are lying when they tell you that they didn't make a choice to be gay. Maybe, when someone who gets in my face and claims that being gay is a choice, can provide me with a testimony of their choice to be straight and how they went about creating a lifestyle that supports their decision, I will then start considering their opinion as more than an opinion.
They've tried electro-shocking it out of us. They've tried the threat of eternal damnation. They're tried depriving us of our jobs. They've tried torture. They've tried removing parts of our brains. They've tried exorcism. They've tried beatings. They've tried legal prohibitions. They've tried coercion. They've tried drugs. They've tried prayer. They've tried the death penalty--really, is there anything they haven't tried to turn gay people straight? And they've never succeeded in doing anything more than turning people into deeply damaged shells of their former selves or corpses.

The grotesque trail of evidence these people have created shows only one thing: you cannot take a gay person and, through intervention in any form, internal or external, physical, psychological or spiritual, turn them into a happy, healthy heterosexual. That's quite a strong suggestion that genetics have at least something to do with it, but it doesn't even come close to providing an answer as to why these people feel they have a need and a right to even try.
Also note that even if it were a choice, there's no good reason to discriminate considering it doesn't victimize anyone. It's a neutral state of being.
Fucking hell, it's not a choice. Anybody who says it is a choice is probably a closet case who "chooses" to be straight out of convenience and fear.

Even if it were a choice, it wouldn't justify any bullying. The kids who choose to say, join the chess club? They have as much of a right to go through their school careers without being harassed and assaulted as the "cool" kids on the football team or cheer squad.

This is making me all stabby. Time to take some deep breaths and pet my kittehs.
@1: Dan is usually pretty meticulous about giving links to original sources. Lighten up, and try not to assume the worst in any given situation.

Also, don't bite the hand that feeds you (information and entertainment).
@28. While science has not found a single, specific cause as to why we prefer to have sex more often with one gender over another, science has also not determined why people are left- or right-handed. The consensus, however, is basically the same: it's likely a combination of genetics and hormone levels in utero, with the "norm" reinforced early in life by familial and cultural standards.
@ 54, I do that too and I've never gotten a single reply yet.
Let's assume for a moment that it is a choice. So is religion. Religion is a constitutionally protected choice.

I would like to establish the Church of Being Gay. Our thoughts and behaviors will be unassailable. To call our holy gayness by anything but the most reverent terms shall be considered hate speech that makes the baby Gay Jesus cry.
I don't really care one way or the other whether it's a choice or not. Being a Presbyterian is a choice, too, but you don't see people pointing fingers over that one. It's just not all that interesting a question to me.

I also think that these stupid kids are just that -- stupid kids, growing up in Oklahoma, for chrissakes, and yeah, they have dumb opinions, and yeah, they have a pack mentality like all teenagers everywhere, and yeah, they all live in mortal terror that they'll say or do or think the wrong thing and their friends will shun or attack them for it, like teenagers everywhere. Some of them will probably turn out to be gay themselves; some will turn out to be hopeless meathead bigots. Some might turn out to be both, together or serially. I know I was an utterly addlepated blockhead when I was 16 and 17, not a gay-basher (bashee, more like) but not exactly Mister Suave either. I came around. These kids might too.
@46: Thank you for that. I was looking at the glass as half-empty, but your interpretation has raised my spirits somewhat.
Yes, great point, @46.
If homosexuality were actually a choice, someone is going to have to explain choosing to be homosexual in Iran to me, or any other country where it's punishable by death. No, I agree with Dingo. Damned near everything under the sun has been tried to beat, scare, legislate, pray the gay away. Doesn't work.
Irony: Mr. Marshall Hoke, who wrote that last charming comment about "if you want to be gay then suffer the punishments", has signed a facebook petition to "Save children's lives" by reducing preventable deaths from diseases like malaria and cholera. (…)
Children's well-being is important! Stop preventable deaths!*

*Offer not valid for gay kids, they deserve to be bullied to death.

It's not just religion or just parents. This shit goes on because it's socially acceptable in too many circles. It's not that people are taught directly to taunt gay people. It's more insidious than that. They're not chastised by their parents, churches, schools or social circles for this horrid behavior. It's still done, but it's no longer truly socially acceptable to bully people based on weight, disability, etc. These little shits are secure in their beliefs because they're supported by their community.
"If you want to be gay..."

Which of course many people would want to do, because of all the rewards for doing so. I mean, if it's a choice between gay and not, why not pick the one that's going to get you social stigma, make you a political football, and probably alienate you from at least some of your friends and family?

I, although always picked last in P.E., second the notion of getting over the stereotype that "jock" = hateful/ignorant. C'mon, now, Dan.
I've known many people who -- if it were a choice -- would be straight. Some would desperately desire not to be gay, for whatever reason. The fact that they're gay, though, proves it has nothing to do with choice.

Yeah, these are just dumb kids. Looking over Marshall Hoke's ("if you want to be gay then suffer the punishments!") facebook page pretty much proves that point.
You wouldn't claim that all Muslims are terrorists, so please do not claim that all Christians are homophobic. Not all Christians believe homosexuality is a sin. How incredibly hypocritical of you all, to claim that every religion must be accepting of homosexuality when you are not accepting of their religion.
You wouldn't claim that all Muslims are terrorists, so please do not claim that all Christians are homophobic. Not all Christians believe homosexuality is a sin. How incredibly hypocritical of you all to claim that every religion must be accepting of homosexuality when you are not accepting of every religion.
Be thankful you live in Washington.

I'm stuck in Colorado sandwiched between two religious garbage dump states in Oklahoma and Utah, and we have religious waste of our own in Colorado Springs.

These young Oklahoma parasites are no surprise. What do you expect from the current home of Anita Bryant, Oral Roberts University, and state legislators/congressional reps who compare homosexuality to terrorism and cancer, and on and on?



like cannibalism, incest, rape and poop eating?

all those other behaviors plenty of other species exhibit ?

please note-

living organisms reproduce. or die out.

"homosexuals"; were there such a thing, as opposed to a behavior choice, would by definition be nonreproducing entities.

Actually, Maechicago, I don't think anyone HAS said that all religious should be accepting of homosexuality. What they're saying is that religion and the religious are not deserving of any special deference or respect for their outlandish beliefs, and indeed that they should be called out for them, required to defend them against vigorous criticism and against the charge that they are responsible for all manner of harm, and ultimately, that religious belief should be forced out of the public arena, where it doesn't belong.

don't despair Dungo-

we're still working feverishly on a cure.....
"Stuck in Colorado." Yeah, what a horrible fate. Especially on a gorgeous fall day like today. You should audition for the part of the robot/butler in Hitchhiker's Guide.
i would guess they got those warped views the same place as Ken Buck did, when a candidate for senate is not rightly taken to task for his phobia, bigotry and intolerance it is hardly surprising that many boneheaded high school students and trolls think it is ok to spout that shit.

I guess I grew up in the school of "if someone hits you, you hit them back".

I don't know what gays are waiting for.

Hey, @72, why don't you direct your ire at the homophobic christians who ARE giving your religion a bad name? Don't shoot us messengers for pointing out the truth about those assholes, go yell at them yourself.
Four of them are honor roll students, or at least were last year:…
@35: Not everything that is innate is genetic. Ask any calico cat.
(Also, the genes that cause such genetic illnesses as cystic fibrosis and sickle-cell anemia DO confer significant benefits to carriers with only one "bad" allele.)
Any Idea ho much I love seeing you heard the bigots into the closet Dan?
It is so tempting to message Dave Hoke (one of the kid's dad) and ask him what the fuck he is going to do about his hateful son, although I am sure that the dad is instrumental in why the kid is hateful to begin with. Its not productive, but it would sure feel good to let some of gay rage out. Productive though? no.
@80 What are "gays waiting for?" In some cases, 12 inches in height and 80 pounds...and if they're facing off against the lacrosse team, you can multiply those odds a few more times. I have 3 kids, and ironically, it's my daughter who can get up in bullies faces and tell them off, my 2 sons are quiet and pretty sensitive, and although I did tell my oldest to fight back when he was physically bullied, it is heartbreaking to tell this to your sweet kid. Fighting back works for some kids, but the pack mentality of these neanderthal bullies is what needs to change.
to those asking why Dan is calling S.A. a "jock" - maybe because this:… is his current profile picture. (On the football field, in full uniform). I call that a jock.
I'm so very much in love with SLOG's ability to make unregistered comments disappear.

By the way, Simon LeVay has a new book out, Gay, Straight, and the Reason Why: The Science of Sexual Orientation that covers the latest research. He's not the most compelling writer, but he does cover the ground.

Some of the most interesting research shows that homosexuality may be genetically associated with increased reproductive success of heterosexual same-sex relatives. (LeVay acknowledges that the research needs to be confirmed and extended.)

While I agree that the matter of choice shouldn't determine whether people are mistreated, the fact is that acceptance of LGBT people closely tracks belief in a genetic or early developmental model of sexual orientation. As such, I think it's good to be informed.
@ 80 That's been tried: heard of Columbine High School much? I'm surprise more bullied teens don't decide to load up and take a few of their tormentors down with them.

It Gets Better...When You Buy Shotguns At Walmart!
I my God you have to read the wall on one of these kids facebook. He is defending his anti-gay crap and whining like hell that he is being challenged on it: (click on Joe Jones "wall")…
Pffffft! Oklahoma. Look at the two cretins they've sent to the Senate and some of the things the two have said. Seriously. Global warming a myth. The Earth is 6000 years old. Etc. Real scary shit. One's even an MD which proves that you can get through medical school and still be an idiot.
Little aside:
Um, @13, your name is clearly visible in your previous post (@9).
Gotta agree with #72: let's lay off the harsh generalizations about the Christians already. It's not accurate and it's not very clever. Guess what? some of us Christians are queer-positive, and even queer-pos activists in our own right through our churches.

Making generalizations like this is an entirely hypocritical reasoning: NOT helpful to our common goal of acceptance and equality with our fellow humans.
I am in Oklahoma and we are not all haters. I am a strong advocate for gay rights, for all equal rights actually. I am a single, white, heterosexual female and I post links to everything about the girl that got screwed out of her prom to the It Gets Better Project and everything in between. I talk about these things with my open minded friends and my bigoted friends. I have a misty dream of a world where people are only judged by their actions. So don't write off anything as "it's just Oklahoma".
To 90... I messaged that kid. He thanked me for being nice and said he has nothing against gay people, he said he has three gay friends. He just doesn't know the kids that killed themselves so why should he wear something to support them. He's a kid. Oh poor kids...they don't know so much. They want to fit in so badly, they want to look cool. It's such a freaking hard time for them and they don't look at how their thoughtless words could affect someone else.
I registered. I've been reading Slog and the comments for years and never felt a need to register. Anyway, I had a really good conversation with a kid that commented on the status. It's hard on all kids to deal with the real world. Maybe this will stick with him as he moves through life.
Well, just because it was on reddit, doesn't mean it came from reddit. He said a friend gave it to him, that was HIS source. It's difficult to find the original source of anything any more but, technically... it came from facebook, not reddit.
The only good sign in all of this is that some kid (who is probably friends with all of these assholes) was troubled enough by this dialogue to grab a screen shot and pass it along. Maybe there's a few good kids down there among the crummy ones.
#31 (Kevin Erickson), you rock. There's more to this equation than fear stoked by religion. It's easier to point a finger at the Pope or other rigid Christians than it is to explore the other roots of black-and-white thinking about gender and sexual desire, though.

I wonder what Dan Savage's mother would think of her son's anti-religion diatribes. If I remember correctly, she was a commited Catholic.