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LGBTQA Hyper and De-sexualization Series: Gay Men

 

Gay relationships have significantly less desexualization than lesbian ones, and the fetishization takes on an entirely different appearance, but the homophobia is ever-present. Gay relationships are seen exclusively as sexual ones, often without any romance or love. I believe this is because of the hyper-sexualization of men that comes from toxic masculinity, as well as a plethora of historical evidence that could be argued as examples of this. Wherever the stereotype originated, it affects present day gay men very deeply.

Gay relationships have been censored in media for some time and are only recently starting to be visible. Where they do appear, homophobic people always follow close after. The best example of this is the famous Campbell’s Soup advertisement that pictured two fathers feeding their child.

As shown in the comment here, the hyper-sexualization of gay men is not only deeply ingrained but goes a step further to equate two men in a relationship with the act of anal sex. This ties into the idea that gay relationships are unfit for children’s, or more generally, public consumption. The Netflix series “Sense 8” discusses this very openly throughout the two seasons, but in my opinion no examination of this phenomenon is better than the first episode. In it, a picture of two main characters engaging in anal sex is leaked and while one of them, Hernando Fuentes, is giving a lecture about art, one of his students posts it in front of the class asking “Is this art, Mr. Fuentes?” 

His answer, while quite long, is a beautifully crafted response to the equating of gay relationships to anal sex, and more broadly the condemnation of sex as corrupt.

“Is it art, Mr. Valles? What do you think? Why don't you tell us what you see?”
The student replies, “Looks like shit-packer porn.”
Hernandez repeats, “‘Shit-packer porn.’ That is very interesting. Yeah. 'Cause this is where the relationship between subject and object reverses. The proverbial shoe shifting to the other foot. And what was seen now reveals the seer. Because the eyes of the beholder find not just beauty where they want, but also shallowness, ugliness, confusion, prejudice. Which is to say the beholder will always see what they want to see, suggesting that what you, Mr. Valles, want to see is in fact shit-packer porn.
“Whereas someone else, someone with a set of eyes capable of seeing beyond societal conventions, beyond their defining biases, such a beholder might see an image of two men caught in an act of pleasure. Erotic to be sure, but also vulnerable. Neither aware of the camera. Both of them connected to the moment, to each other. To love. And as I have suggested before in this class, art is love made public.”

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