Are gay public figures supposed to remain celibate?

Shame on the Desert Sun newspaper and its reporter Kate McGinty.  It seems reporters now think it fine to report on single public figures seeking love, or just a roll in the hay, online.  Good.  Then let’s also report on all public figures, including reporters, who aren’t married and who have sex.  Because that seems to the be standard for this story – oh, and the guy is gay too, so that just makes it all the more salacious, doesn’t it?

Seriously, what is wrong with a local city councilman, who is single and openly gay, looking for sex in his off hours?  Do single straight people have sex?  I think they do.  Do they sometimes have it with people they’ve just met, at bars or parties?  Why, yes they do.  So is that the new standard – if you even vaguely intimate that you’re interested in sleeping with someone else, it’s news!  Because straight guys, when they go to bars, they never go looking to get laid.  Oh no.  It’s only for a friendly platonic drink with friends.  No sex, please, we’re straight.

There are a few things going on in this story. First, homophobia.  How salacious that a gay man was looking to get laid (oh my!).  Second, Internet-phobia.  How salacious that someone used the Internet to try to meet another human being.  Kate McGinty likely wouldn’t have written a story about an unmarried heterosexual city councilman using eHarmony to meet women (and he indicated in his profile that he actually might just consider sleeping with those women!).

Oh, and let me guess.  Had this guy been “caught” going to a gay bar to meet guys, then the story would have been about him frequenting sleazy gay bars.

If there were any kind of hypocrisy here, I might understand the paper’s rationale.  But what’s going on here is that the hetero paper is simply not familiar with how people date in the modern era.  Especially gay people.  Straight people can reasonably assume that most “hot chicks” they meet are straight – I’m not saying they will be straight, I’m saying that in our society the assumption is that you’re straight, so no one would look at you funny if you made a pass at someone of the opposite sex who ended up gay.

Try being gay.

Imagine what it’s like being a gay man and wanting to make a pass at a cute guy at the office, at the bus stop, at church.  I’d be damn careful about doing any of those unless I knew, or strongly suspected, the other guy was gay.  Straight guys don’t have that problem, worrying about getting the sh*t kicked out of them if they make a friendly pass at a woman who happens to be a lesbian.

There’s a reason gay people were early adopters of online dating.  Other than a few bars (and the Whole Foods), there’s nowhere else we can safely assume the other person is actually gay.  And I mean safely.

It’s abominable that this newspaper thought it relevant to write about this.


Follow me on Twitter: @aravosis | @americablog | @americabloggay | Facebook | Instagram | Google+ | LinkedIn. John Aravosis is the Executive Editor of AMERICAblog, which he founded in 2004. He has a joint law degree (JD) and masters in Foreign Service from Georgetown; and has worked in the US Senate, World Bank, Children's Defense Fund, the United Nations Development Programme, and as a stringer for the Economist. He is a frequent TV pundit, having appeared on the O'Reilly Factor, Hardball, World News Tonight, Nightline, AM Joy & Reliable Sources, among others. John lives in Washington, DC. .

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