This is a plea to stop using “gay” as exchangeable for “bad”.
Gay isn’t a bad word, assuming you’re using it to describe a man who is attracted (physically, spiritually, and emotionally) to other men, (depending on label preference) a woman who is attracted to women, or anyone else who self-identifies as gay. In that case, feel comfortable using the word gay. But that’s the extent of it.
Gay has been turned into a bad word by people who have chosen to use it as an insult. “Gay” is often used in exchange for “stupid”, “annoying”, “girly”, and “[any other negative word]”. It’s become so common, in fact, that people, especially young people, will call something gay without even realizing the word is normally attached to sexuality, which is something a car, no matter how “gay” you might think it is, cannot be associated with.
A car can’t be gay.
The word gay has become so synonymous with bad that people often feel uncomfortable using it correctly. I’ve experience well-intentioned people stumbling over the word gay to describe someone who is actually gay, saying things like, “he’s ga–uh… homosexual.” In this case, gay is the right word to use. Homosexual is a medical term, and not one that creates comfort within the gay community. It’s a problem when people struggle to use the correct word to describe something, because it’s become so slanted by people charging it with hate and ignorance.
What’s worse: the way many of us use the word “gay” has become damaging to LGBTQ people and straight people alike. It’s an insult to call someone straight “gay”, and the fact that that’s an insult is incredibly harmful to people who are lesbian, gay, or bisexual.
New rule: if you’re talking about a dude who likes dudes (or, again, depending on preference, a gal who likes gals), use the word “gay”; if you’re not, don’t. It’s that simple. Good? Good.
Originally published at itspronouncedmetrosexual.com.
Graphics originally published at itspronouncedmetrosexual.com.