Thursday, February 22, 2007

Come Shower With Me, Michael

Michael Medved, a shining star in the tiara of wingnuttism, explains to us why we shouldn't allow gay men to join professional sports teams:

In the wake of the nearly-universal condemnation of Tim Hardaway's statements to a radio interviewer, the substantive issue remains. Is it a reasonable for an NBA basketball player (or a soldier in basic training, for that matter) to feel uncomfortable sharing intimate quarters with a homosexual, or does this represent an outrageous, irrational fear? In response to the Hardaway controversy, several sports columnists compared his resistance to the idea of playing alongside gay teammates to the racism of previous years when white players tried to avoid competing with (or against) blacks.

The analogy is ridiculous, of course. There is no rational basis for discomfort at playing with athletes of another race since science and experience show that human racial differences remain insignificant. The much better analogy for discomfort at gay teammates involves the widespread (and generally accepted) idea that women and men shouldn't share locker rooms. Making gay males unwelcome in the intimate circumstances of an NBA team makes just as much sense as making straight males unwelcome in the showers for a women's team at the WNBA. Most female athletes would prefer not to shower together with men not because they hate males (though some of them no doubt do), but because they hope to avoid the tension, distraction and complication that prove inevitable when issues of sexual attraction (and even arousal) intrude into the arena of competitive sports.

Tim Hardaway (and most of his former NBA teammates) wouldn't welcome openly gay players into the locker room any more than they'd welcome profoundly unattractive, morbidly obese women. I specify unattractive females because if a young lady is attractive (or, even better, downright "hot") most guys, very much including the notorious love machines of the National Basketball Association, would probably welcome her joining their showers. The ill-favored, grossly overweight female is the right counterpart to a gay male because, like the homosexual, she causes discomfort due to the fact that attraction can only operate in one direction. She might well feel drawn to the straight guys with whom she's grouped, while they feel downright repulsed at the very idea of sex with her.

What Michael objects to is the idea of someone else perhaps hunting him as a sex object. That's what makes him feel so very uncomfortable, I think. He never asks whether the heterosexual men in the shower look attractive to the young hottie women he imagines, with some enjoyment. He simply assumes that the attraction would be mutual. Or rather, that the guys would do the hunting, so that's ok, too. And not one sentence about lesbians in the women's showers. Maybe Michael is like Queen Victoria and doesn't believe that women could be so perfidious.

Then there is the whole "ill-favored, grossly overweight female" schtick. Remind me again how men don't really want women to go on diets and how it is the other women who force dieting on their sisters.

The whole column is rather vomit-worthy, if you like that sort of thing. Medved builds his arguments into a crescendo, ending in the to-him-obvious conclusion that mixing genders or mixing heterosexuals with gays and lesbians will not work in any professional setting where sex might rear its ugly head. Well, you can guess which groups would be excluded in this scenario.

Besides, he thinks that gay sex is disgusting. I think all sex looks pretty hilarious and certainly would seem incomprehensible to a Martian or some other alien species which propagates by division.
Thanks to spocko.