They was kissin'
They need to apologize
This is from Daily Kos
Homophobia in the advice columns
by dmsilev [Subscribe]
Mon Feb 20, 2006 at 07:19:33 AM PDT
I was flipping through the morning paper, and saw something rather interesting in the local version of "Dear Abby" (in Chicago, it's "Ask Amy"). The full question, along with Amy's slap-in-the-face response, is below the fold, but let me just say "bravo" to Amy Dickinson for her response.
This column appeared in the Tempo section of Monday's Chicago Tribune
Apology might help ease tension in neighborhood
Dear Amy: My husband and I have lived in our quiet suburban Denver neighborhood for six years.
About two years ago two young gay men moved in across the street. They've taken the ugliest, most run-down property in the neighborhood and remodeled and transformed it into the pride of the street.
When it snows, they shovel out my car and are friendly, yet they mostly keep to themselves.
Last month I went out to retrieve my newspaper and watched them kiss each other goodbye and embrace as they each left for work.
I was appalled that they would do something like that in plain view of everyone.
I was so disturbed that I spoke to my pastor. He encouraged me to draft a letter telling them how much we appreciate their help but asking them to refrain from that behavior in our neighborhood.
I did so and asked a few of our neighbors to sign it.
Since I delivered it, I've not been able to get them to even engage me in conversation.
I offer greetings but they've chosen to ignore me.
They have made it so uncomfortable for the other neighbors and me by not even acknowledging our presence.
How would you suggest we open communications with them and explain to them that we value their contributions to the neighborhood but will not tolerate watching unnatural and disturbing behavior.
So, Wondering sent her neighbors a note accusing them of "unnatural behavior" (God forbid that a couple kiss each other before leaving for work), and now can't quite understand why they aren't as friendly as before.
Dear Wondering: You're lucky that these gentlemen merely choose to ignore you.
Your neighbors could respond to your hospitality by hosting weekly outdoor "gay pride" barbecues and inviting all of their friends to enjoy life on your quiet suburban street.
I can hold out hope that they will choose to do this, but I'm spiteful in that way. Your neighbors sound much more kind.
In your original petition to these men, you basically stated that while you value them when they are raising the standard on your street and shoveling your driveway, you loathe them for being who they are.
The only way to open communication with your neighbors would be to start by apologizing to them for engaging your other neighbors in your campaign. Because you don't sound likely to apologize, you are just going to have to tolerate being ignored.
Basically, either grovel or deal with being shunned. The only thing that I would add to this advice is to switch pastors. It sounds like Wondering's pastor is at least as intolerant as she is.
It is nice to see, however, that there was no hesitation or ambivalence in the advice given.
I wonder if she would have said the same if it was a straight biracial couple.
It must have been horrible to think your neighbors liked you, then to get a letter like that. Here you are, assuming they were tolerant, then comes the written equivilent of a burning cross.
posted by Steve @ 5:15:00 PM