The Guff

This Is So Gay

In The Pile on March 22, 2011 at 9:56 pm

I remember the first time someone called me a homosexual (yes, they really did say ‘homosexual’), I must have been about 6 or something. I didn’t know what it meant but I realised I should find out fast. That word was the bees knees and all the cool kids were saying it. I wanted in on the fun. But I wanted to know what it meant before I started slinging it around.

Problem was though, I didn’t know how to spell it; nobody did. I figured it started with “home” so I just looked at all the words in the dictionary starting with home. I found homebodies, homeboy, homebuyer, homecoming, homed, homegirl, homegrown, homeland, homeless, homely, homemade, homeobox and homeomorphic but no homosexuals. Damn, this sucks. Why isn’t it there? This Oxford’s Primary Student Dictionary is supposed to have everything in it.

So I figured I should just ask my brother. He laughed at me at first, then he asked me to say it again (I had pronunciation problems when younger). Eventually he told me what the word meant, I was kinda disappointed though, I was expecting something to do with aliens and lasers. But hey, these were the days of “batteriesnotincluded”, I’d make do. At least I could join in on the fun now.

The “homosexual” fad probably lasted 3 weeks in my school. Then the teachers found out, got very upset and we all stopped saying it. But homosexual was just the beginning, we’d moved onto the new word now. We’d all moved on to gay.

Fast-forward a decade or so and gay is the new black. Well, as long as your not actually gay that is. Gay now pretty much means the same as lame, uncool, stupid, shit or just generally negative. Problem is, not everyone is ok with this, myself included.

A whole assortment of defenses supporting the use of “gay” have sprung up to explain why it isn’t a problem. Some say that it’s just the result of language evolving and the meaning has changed. Problem is, the meaning hasn’t changed.

It’s not as if we now now use a new word to refer to gay people. Gay still means homosexual, using ‘gay’ as an insult hasn’t changed this meaning; it’s concurrent with it. Simultaneous to people calling bad things ‘gay”, people are actually ‘gay’. But apparently this ins’t a problem because words can men more than one thing. Apparently, when people say “that’s so gay”, they don’t intend for it to have anything to do with gay people. But if it’s meant to have no relation whatsoever, then why the fuck are we using it?

If people started saying “that’s so women” or “that’s so Indians”, would you genuinely think it had no connection to women or Indians? `Sure, you can say, “but that’s not what those words mean!”, but I the meanings of words can change, right?

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  1. This article is so gay.

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