The Fresh New Bumper Crop of Upcoming Homeaux Should Shut Up About Tops & Bottoms
There seems to be a pervasive attitude among the very fortunate new generation of “modern” gay youngsters that any gay man who considers himself to be fully, without exception, 100% top or 100% bottom is just ridiculous and cannot be taken seriously. They have grown up in a world made comfortable for them by the backbreaking activism of the generations before them, so instead of spending their late teens marching to courthouses, picketing anti-gay politicians, or holding candles at the funerals of their dying friends one after the other, these kids got to feel comfortable in their gay skin and explore every aspect of their sexuality without much risk.
They have grown up watching television series where gay characters were embraced, loved, supported, and in most cases, not different from any other characters on the show. Us? We got to watch stereotypes get chased down and beaten to death, limp wristed fairies lisping their lines and swishing hither and thither in a scripted hissy fit to illustrate to the heterosexual viewers what to look out for from the depraved and effeminate homos.
How pleasant it must be to have known so little fear and isolation growing up. My mind reels at the concept of casual sexual experimentation sans broken ribs and bruised internal organs as repayment for a botched sexual advance on the wrong person. So why, then, with all that luxury and freedom and equality do they have nothing better to do than gripe when an irrelevant old faggot like me casually complains to a friend that the city is virtually bereft of tops, and that the bottoms will soon start scissoring each other to death if the ratio doesn’t improve soon? What do they get out of injecting themselves into that conversation with the sole purpose of correcting the two older men and lecturing them about how antiquated and heteronormative such gender based sexual identities are these days.
Stop insisting through every form of media available to you that my version of being gay is over! Don’t tell me that we don’t need gay bars or gayborhoods anymore, because I’m not done with them. Don’t tell me there is no “top” or “bottom” these days, because I’m still exclusively a bottom. You’re not quite finished learning what it is to be a grown up homosexual in this society. Your Queer Studies chapters about the AIDS Culture doesn’t qualify you to have an opinion on my generation’s struggle with HIV and the stigma and death and guilt that came with it. Your “understanding” of the modern gay is hypocritical and obnoxious. That shit you’re quoting is good for when you’re in your dorm getting high, waxing philosophical, and giving your roommate a handjob to prove to him how bisexual you’ve decided he is.
But out here where many of us are still very actively living the lifestyle you seem so anxious to redefine, there are definitely still men who celebrate our bottomness, and who, though no business of yours, may have deep-seated emotional reasons for not wanting to (or being able to) perform sexually as a penetrative partner. Maybe when you get to the chapter near the back where it talks about layered stigma and body shaming, judgemental buzzwords like “Clean” or “guys who care about their bodies”, and the psychological warfare that the gay community has been waging on itself by tearing one another down to feel better about themselves – maybe once you’ve had a chance to absorb more than “Intro to Faggotry in the 21st Century” you’ll have an ounce of perspective that I’d consider worthy of engaging in conversation. Until then, do what my grandparents and parents always taught me to do – respect your fucking elders, and be polite to strangers. Unless you happen to be a top, in which case. . .