By Michael Bronski, Ann Pellegrini, and Michael Amico“Oh, he is such a homophobe. He’s probably really gay. That explains it.” How often have you heard this? How often have you thought it? Ironically, appeals to common sense are usually made when logical explanations fail or when the explanation is just too confusing to make immediate sense. That is the case with this myth, and, perhaps, with the idea of homophobia itself. Society, culture, economics, power structures, family relationships, prejudices, religion, and so many other factors enter into the creation and maintenance of homophobia. Isolating any one factor, such as a person’s supposed sexuality, and singling it out as the chief cause overlook this complexity. More important, with this myth, it also risks de-politicizing homophobia by turning it into a matter of one individual’s warped psychology.
By Michael Bronski, Ann Pellegrini, and Michael Amico | Attempts to explain what causes homosexuality have a long, and often ugly, history. Various medical theories that pathologized homosexuality have caused and justified outright violence against LGB people, most notably, the use of electroshock treatments as part of therapeutic attempts to cure homosexuality in the 1950s. As terrible as this history is, it does not mean that attempts to consider what causes homosexuality—or how it evolves—are necessarily bad or dangerous for LGB people.
A true mark of today’s paradigm shift is seeing how quickly the media and American society at large learned to address Caitlyn Jenner and Laverne Cox by their new gender identities. The widespread visibility of diverse LGBT identities continues to...
Do hate crime laws prevent gay bashing? Ann Pellegrini, co-author of “You Can Tell Just By Looking” and 20 Other Myths About LGBT Life and People, has a surprising answer.
The authors of "You Can Tell Just By Looking": And 20 Other Myths about LGBT Life and People dispel the myth that LGBT parents are bad for children.
A Massachusetts resident celebrates the state's progressive leadership, how it became a beacon of hope for the marriage equality movement, and, while she's at it, dispels some LGBT myths with Michael Bronski, Ann Pellegrini, and Michael Amico, authors of “You Can Tell Just By Looking”: And 20 Other Myths About LGBT Life and People.