January 29, 2017

In Donald Trump’s America Gay And Sexist Slurs Are Back

In Donald Trump's America homophobia and sexism is back - American flag on the prairie.

I was ten years old and in the fifth grade when I first heard another kid use “gay” and “fag”in a derogatory way as hateful slurs. I don’t know if this is still true, but back then, ten-year-olds didn’t grasp the implications of WHAT they were saying and were repeating gay slurs they heard at home. Fifth graders knew that calling people a "homo" or “gay” or a “fag” was bad, and also knew that those particular terms were the worst words you could use that didn't cause your teacher to call home to tell your parents (unlike using the "F" word).

Sexist or misogynistic, anti-gay or LGBT, ethnic or religious based slurs, are horrible terms that people still use to hurt someone’s feelings. These words are based on ignorant stereotypes, and invoking one’s sexuality, ethnicity, religion, skin color, or accent, is mean, juvenile, immature, and unacceptable. Maybe most importantly - these awful slurs - are NOT politically correct today or thirty plus years ago.

As a society, we frown upon using these characterizations. It’s rude and causes emotional pain and suffering. It reduces a human being to an awful stereotype that diminishes the victim and reveals ignorance, stupidity, and a discomfort with “other” on the part of the perpetrator. Sometimes using these terms also represent a deep-seated fear of other people that manifests itself as hate and hate speech.

Donald Trump decried being politically correct over the course of his campaign for president. During a Republican party debate, Trump sneered, “I think the big problem this country has is being politically correct. I’ve been challenged by so many people and I frankly don’t have time for total political correctness. And to be honest with you, this country doesn’t have time either.”

To say that I disagree with Trump's assertion about being politically correct would be an understatement. Considering that Trump lacks a sense of humor, has thin skin, and can’t take criticism or a joke, it’s hypocritical for him to be politically incorrect.

Since election day there's been a spike in anti-gay, anti-immigrant, anti-black, anti-Muslim, and anti-woman hate crimes. The Southern Poverty Law Center reports that in the post-election hate crimes "37 percent of all incidents directly referenced either President-elect Donald Trump, his campaign slogans, or his infamous remarks about sexual assault."

The only exception to hard and fast rules about being politically correct in my book are comic uses in the context of a benign story or bit. Don Rickles is the master at this. I give wide latitudes to comedians and humorists who can make us laugh at ourselves. Comics are trained. They work hard over many years honing their craft, their onstage persona, and their material. It’s a highly specialized and serious occupation, and I have a tremendous amount of respect for the craft. The standards that we live by in society to get along with each other, namely being politically correct, doesn’t always apply to comedy.

Hunter Hatcher's offensive tweet "Gay jokes are back on ya bunch of homos."

A low-level Arkansas state employee and member of the Arkansas National Guard, Hunter Hatcher, made news this past week when he used social media to say that in Donald Trump’s America, it’s now permissible to use gay slurs and gay jokes. His posts on social media weren’t just directed at the gay community, he also revealed that lunch was his favorite meal and that he thought women belonged in the kitchen making him his favorite meal.
Y’All in Trump’s America now. Time to flick that chip off ya shoulder and quit being so offended. Gay jokes are back on ya bunch of homos. 
If all these women are at the Capitol, who’s making lunch? 
I love Subway cause I can tell a woman to make me a sandwich and she does it with a smile on her face. 
I wish all women had that Subway work ethic. ... Don’t get equal, get to cooking woman, get equal on your own time.
Hatch resigned from his position on Monday. The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette reported that the state Treasurer accepted Hatch’s resignation and that he was offended by Hatch’s statements about women and the gay community.

An outreach coordinator in Arkansas Treasurer Dennis Milligan’s office resigned Monday amid backlash from social media posts that Milligan said were “insulting” to women and people in the gay community.

Hunter Hatcher, a member of the Arkansas National Guard who has been on unpaid military leave from the treasurer’s office since December, submitted his resignation voluntarily and it was accepted, Milligan spokesman Stacy Peterson said.

I don’t know Hunter Hatch and suspect that he has internal ‘issues’ surrounding sexuality and sexism. The reason why I think his behavior is significant is because it exemplifies a homophobic and sexist mindset that’s prevalent among a large number of Donald Trump’s voters, as well as the new White House staff, that Trump has surrounded himself with.

I have a bad feeling that the worst is yet to come.

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