Paging Dr. Freud?

I am not really a big supporter of the whole “anti-gay bigots are secretly closeted gay men” meme. I find it far too ‘pat’ an answer – human behaviour and beliefs are multifaceted and complex. While there have been a number of examples where anti-gay crusaders (Eddie Long, George Rekers, Ted Haggard) have turned out to be something other than the sterling avatars of pure heterosexuality that they claim to be, there are enough men in public life who hate gays with equal sincerity and virulence who show no evidence of being gay, secretly or otherwise. Whatever the relationship between gay hatred and self-hatred by gay men, I find that particular explanation sometimes borders on succumbing to ‘shaming’ straight men for being gay, and that makes me uncomfortable.

All that being said, sometimes there doesn’t seem to be any other explanation*:

“Untrammeled homosexuality can take over and destroy a social system,” says [anti-gay activist Paul] Cameron. “If you isolate sexuality as something solely for one’s own personal amusement[1], and all you want is the most satisfying orgasm you can get- and that is what homosexuality seems to be-then homosexuality seems too powerful to resist[2]. The evidence is that men do a better job on men and women on women, if all you are looking for is orgasm.” So powerful is the allure of gays, Cameron believes, that if society approves that gay people, more and more heterosexuals will be inexorably drawn into homosexuality[3]. “I’m convinced that lesbians are particularly good seducers,” says Cameron.

“People in homosexuality are incredibly evangelical,” he adds, sounding evangelical himself. “It’s pure sexuality. It’s almost like pure heroin. It’s such a rush[4]. They are committed in almost a religious way. And they’ll take enormous risks, do anything.” He says that for married men and women, gay sex would be irresistible. “Martial (sic) sex tends toward the boring end[5],” he points out. “Generally, it doesn’t deliver the kind of sheer sexual pleasure that homosexual sex does[6]” So, Cameron believes, within a few generations homosexuality would be come the dominant form of sexual behavior.

There’s a lot to unpack here:

1 –  Solely for one’s own personal amusement

Okay… so apparently Mr. Cameron is one of those “sex is for mekkin’ babys” kind of guys. This is often cast as a “traditional” view of the function of sexuality, but it’s about as “traditional” as ‘White Christmas‘ – which is to say, it’s been “traditional” for maybe 200-300 years tops, and only in certain cultures. Far more ‘traditional’ (in the sense that it goes back into antiquity and crosses cultural borders pretty much effortlessly) is the view that sex is really nifty and fun. Industries have been (and still are) founded on that principle. By contrast, ‘sex for procreation only’ is and has been a failing idea that has required harsh punishment and the power of religious authority to keep itself propped up for generations.

And let’s not overlook this, because I think it’s more or less borne out by the rest of the statement: one’s own personal amusement? Masturbation is for one’s own personal amusement. Sex, even as pure amusement, is for (one would hope) the mutual amusement of all involved parties. If I were a betting man, I’d put money on the fact that Mrs. Cameron could, if need be, flawlessly reproduce from memory the pattern of stucco on the ceiling above her bed. If Mr. Cameron has this idea of sex as personal amusement fixed in his head, and doesn’t see how weird a thing to say that is, my guess is that in his zeal to stay hard, he never notices the look of bored and slightly disgusted distraction on his poor wife’s face during their semiannual sexual ritual.

2 – Homosexuality is too powerful to resist

So here’s the central part of his argument: that gay sex is better than hetero sex, and men everywhere are champing at the bit to plunge their way into some hot man ass. He seems to think the same situation holds for women – suggesting perhaps that Mr. Cameron doesn’t like to eat pussy. Whatever the reason, Mr. Cameron seems to have, for all his vaunted experience as a psychologist, not a blessed clue about how sexual attraction works. Human sexual attraction is not about maximizing orgasm quality – the reason straight men aren’t attracted to other men isn’t because they simply haven’t discovered the joy of prostate pounding, it’s because they (we) just don’t work that way. The wide variety of human sexual preference should be abundant evidence to suggest that people are attracted to all kinds of different things, and very little of that decision is made on the basis of likely orgasm quality.

Also… threesomes are a thing, Mr. Cameron. Just throwing that out there.

3 – Heterosexual people are just waiting for society’s approval

There are a lot of sex-positive liberals out there, Mr. Cameron. Amazingly though, they (we) haven’t all ‘gone gay’, despite the fact that there are few consequences to such a ‘choice’. In a society where a plastic sexual identity is possible (and not a source of shame and persecution) you’re right: some men will have sex with other men – those men who want to have sex with other men. That’s all.

4 – Gay sex is like heroin

I know people who like sex a lot, but I have never heard of anyone who would compare it to heroin – gay or otherwise. Maybe I’m divulging a bit too much of my own business here, but considering the stories I’ve heard about what heroin addicts are willing to do to get their next ‘fix’ (including, interestingly, providing sexual favours for money), I can’t see this kind of statement as anything other than really freakin’ weird.

5 – Marital sex gets boring

Aaaaaand so you give up on women altogether? This one is truly bizarre. Some men who are bored with their marital sex lives have affairs. Others might work with their spouse to spice things up a bit. Again, the only way I can see for this statement to make sense is if Mr. Cameron thinks that all men secretly long for a taste of the cock and are as bored with hetero hotslappy as he is. Only way.

Of course there’s the assumption built in there that gay people don’t get sexually bored either, which is kind of a strange assumption.

6 – Heterosexual sex doesn’t provide the same ‘sheer sexual pleasure’ that homosexual sex does

Neil deGrasse Tyson is confused

I seriously don’t even know what to say to that. There’s no way for me to parse that sentence without accepting the premise that Mr. Cameron had gay sex and wants more, but can’t because he thinks it’s wrong.

There are a lot of sad things that come through this quote, and if it weren’t from such a hateful assbag, I would feel deep and abiding sympathy for a man so twisted by the conflict between his ideology and his sexual orientation. If Mr. Cameron, or those like him, lived in a society that allowed people maximum freedom from both legal and social punishment for acts that do not harm anyone else, he’d be able to live the kind of life he so evidently wants to. The great tragedy of the situation is that not only can he not live in a world like that, he is actively working to make sure that nobody else can either.

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*I actually took the time to track down the source of this quote. It comes from an article by Robert Dreyfuss, who provides no citation for where these remarks were actually said. Treat them with the appropriate amount of skepticism.


  1. fastlane says

    I didn’t follow the link, but is this Kirk “Bananaman Flunky” Cameron we’re talking about here, or a different Mr. Cameron?

  2. says

    This is Paul Cameron, a completely different anti-homosexual bigot and fraud… and if I recall correctly, he’s almost-but-not-quite admitted to being himself a closeted homosexual.

  3. baal says

    But for the fear of god we’d all be binging on gay sex? Yeah, the Neil DeGrass Tyson gif is entirely apt.

    When I’m at the pool, there is a sub-set of folks who either refuse to let go of the edge or they swim with an absolute rigidity. I always want to tell them, um just relax, it’s a lot easier that way.

    My message to those fearful about sex is the same. Like what you like, do what you like (with consent, read up on the what that means though) and don’t worry so much about it. There are other folks who like what you do and won’t judge you for it.

  4. AsqJames says

    “Martial sex tends toward the boring end”

    He’s not had much interaction with military people then? I wonder if he’s expecting “martial” sex to improve now DADT has been ended.

    /Yes, I noted the “(sic)”.

  5. Uncle Glenny says

    I knew Freud’s great-niece (although she was a therapist & clinical psych instructor, not analyst), will that do?

    fastlane: it’s paul cameron, not bananaman. He’s one of the old-timer classic fraudulent “researchers”, now well discredited, who’s research is cited as evidence of just how sick, perverted, dangerous, etc., homosexuality is. In fact, there;s an anti-contraception video someone just recent posted here on ftb (and making rounds) which I’m pretty certain uses a stat or two from Cameron and attributes it to Kinsey. This was a stat on number partners of the form (I’m making these up) like “50% of homosexuals will have over 400 sexual partners in their lifetime.” That sort of crap.

    I’m guessing that one came from cameron; there was another especially notorious stat having to do with average age of death which was computed in some especially rigorous way, like reading obituaries in San Francisco and/or New York during the early days of the AIdS epidemic. That sort of crap.

    That said, what I know about most of this is basically the distilled talking points, and those back from my activist days (to they extend they were) in the 1990s, so memory and more modernity put me at a bit of a disadvantage here. Also, I’ve never actually seen Cameron, heard him talk or lecture, or even read an abstract of his work, until this so I’ve never really entertained an opinion on it.

    OK, I just watched a youtube video, this one:

    It;s in the comments of what crom linked to (which is from 2004) but the comment is from this month. It’s an interview with Cameron, about his claim that Obama is gay, in which he is going to admit to homosexual attraction. And now that I see it, I see that I’ve seen it before (I’m in a hypomanic state and haven’t slept in a while so my memory flakes a bit and I also get a bit aphasic)

    Ipso facto pomo homo.

    View it and be entertained.

  6. AsqJames says

    OK, having stopped laughing and followed the link, this section from the introduction to Cameron’s pean to the pleasures of gay sex struck me:

    …some peoples entire understanding of homosexuality starts and ends with gay sex – the idea that a gay person would have a relationship on any other level (emotional, psychological) with a person of the same sex doesn’t even seem to occur to them.

    I suspect this may be true, but perhaps incomplete.

    It’s by no means a universal, but among those men I’ve encountered who are negative towards homosexuality, many also seem to have trouble forming close emotional or psychological relationships with women. Certainly when a sexual relationship is not also on the agenda. And when one is I do wonder if they are, to some degree, “faking” the friendship element of the relationship in order to gain access to the sexual side.

    For such men, friendship/companionship between equals and mutual respect seem incompatible with having sex. Sex is about getting your rocks off and taking your pleasure. I wonder if there is a correlation between homophobia and the sexual objectification of women?

  7. says

    And this is a whole other conversation that I was thinking about having in the post but I didn’t want to go on forever.

    Our twisted construct of masculinity really adds an edge to anti-gay hate. The idea that men are SUPPOSED to be these single-minded automatons when it comes to sex, that women SHOULD be objectified, that all of this is NORMAL and HEALTHY… it’s a big part of the problem. I saw a couple on the bus the other day where the guy was snuggling up to his girlfriend and I remember thinking it was funny, and then stopping myself and saying “the only reason I think this is unusual is because men aren’t supposed to pursue affection – that’s a GIRL thing.” These kinds of gender constructs make no sense, but holy shit are they powerful.

    A big part of the anti-gay thing is the idea that gay men are “sissies” and “pansies” and other things that make them ‘less than’, which is ONLY negative if your assumption is that men are supposed to live up to this bullshit macho ideal. That kind of normative pressure SURELY affects how men see women – not as other people but as the targets for dicking, and little more.

    The thoughts I have on this are sort of half-baked, and I may try to flesh them out into a full post soon.

  8. AsqJames says


    And the elevation of the completely unrealistic “macho man/damsel in distress” type of relationship to being the archetypal ideal feeds into ignorant conceptions of same sex relationships so it’s assumed one half of a gay couple must be the “sissy” who’s “playing the woman” and one half of a lesbian couple is the “bull dyke” who’s “playing the man”.

    The thoughts I have on this are sort of half-baked, and I may try to flesh them out into a full post soon.

    I’ll look forward to that (and any counter arguments), ‘cos half-baked would be a generous description of my thoughts right now ;).

  9. Azkyroth, Former Growing Toaster Oven says

    Whatever the relationship between gay hatred and self-hatred by gay men, I find that particular explanation sometimes borders on succumbing to ‘shaming’ straight men for being gay

    The whole meme complex around it is pretty well grounded in bi-erasure, too.

    On the other hand, it does seem logical that for a man who A) has some level of attraction to other men, irrespective of whether he is also attracted to women, especially in a culture where bi erasure is basically the cultural default (at least as regards men) and B) has anti-“gay” prejudices, the cognitive dissonance and self-loathing might serve to intensify and radicalize his existing homophobia…without, necessarily, any implications for homophobes in the general case.

    There’s an alternative explanation that occurs to me, grounded in misogyny rather than personal attraction to men: “men are good; women suck; sex is good; sex with men must be GREAT; but I can’t have it, I don’t feel it…because it’s WRONG!” Something along those lines, where “I don’t feel it” actually stems from lack of attraction to other men rather than sincere moral revulsion.

    Anyone with more training think that’s credible?

  10. smrnda says

    This reminds me a lot of the nonsense Orson Scott Card writes. It’s that (in his opinion) men and women just really don’t go together, and have nothing in common, and are just *so different* and would all be happier if they just hung out with a same-sex friend group but that they must force themselves to relate for the good of society. I mean, what I’m reading into both people are that they are male, and probably don’t find it easy to relate to women as people, and so they project this onto everybody.

    This also seems to be a kind of logic fail with the whole argument. Homosexuality is an abomination because of the complementary nature of men and women, which you think would indicate it’s easier to be heterosexual. But, in order to condemn homosexuals, you have to argue that they’re taking the easy way out. And on top of this, you have to believe that relationships are just about sex.

  11. says

    I know people who like sex a lot, but I have never heard of anyone who would compare it to heroin – gay or otherwise. Maybe I’m divulging a bit too much of my own business here, but considering the stories I’ve heard about what heroin addicts are willing to do to get their next ‘fix’ (including, interestingly, providing sexual favours for money), I can’t see this kind of statement as anything other than really freakin’ weird.

    You could read up on sex addiction (or addiction to other non-substances such as gambling, food, shopping, etc).

    I kinda doubt that everyone you know has done heroin so they can’t exactly compare it, can they? The idea that anything is absolutely addictive is not accurate to begin with- nothing is really “like heroin” the way people mean it, not even actual heroin.

    Also, there have been a number of studies about homophobic men and arousal. It does seem that a higher number of homophobic men are actually aroused by gay sex than their non-homophobic peers.

  12. says

    This is kind of off topic, but I am in a surprisingly good mood so WTFever: I know a lot of women who say they have trouble relating to other women, and that they have mostly male friends. I know comparatively fewer men who spend the majority of their time with women and eschew male company. I wonder if there’s anything in there – whether they’d feel more COMFORTABLE with women but think that would make them look ‘femme’, or whether they can’t relate to women as anything other than sex objects even though their personalities would naturally gravitate that way…

    Maybe it’s just confirmation bias. I dunno. At times I’ve had mostly female friends. At other times it’s been mostly male. These days it’s a relatively even split.

    EDIT: Or maybe it’s something to do with how women are popularly portrayed. If you buy into the “women are like what we see on TV” myth, then I can imagine why people of any wouldn’t want to spend time with them.

  13. says

    You could read up on sex addiction

    A fair point.

    It does seem that a higher number of homophobic men are actually aroused by gay sex than their non-homophobic peers

    Interesting. I should also look into those studies.

  14. steve84 says

    He also claims that gay men’s life expectancy is over 20 years lower than straight men’s. He came to that conclusion by reading obituaries in San Francisco at the height of the AIDS crisis

  15. says

    It’s one of those bizarre statistical “facts” that idiots like to wave around. Even if it weren’t a cherry-picked finding, it is totally misleading because it’s not ‘teh ghey’ that’s killing homosexual men any more than it is the mere fact of left-handedness that leads to a higher mortality rate among lefties – it’s the whole raft of stuff that comes along with being gay in this culture in this world. We can fix a lot of those things through policy and social campaigning.

  16. Uncle Glenny says

    And this is a whole other conversation that I was thinking about having in the post but I didn’t want to go on forever.

    Yeah, there’s been all sorts of stuff going on at ftp that’s related, even just today. The post on reparative therapist David Packer at Lousy Canuck – turns out he’s much as Cameron described himself (well, had pried out of him). The brief TED talk ostensibly on abortion that Kylie put up is highly applicable to GLBT folk, or, really, any out-group. Check them out. And all the A+/MRA things that have been going on has facets of objectification, sexual (or sexualized) assault, power relationships, how people can behave…

    (Was interrupted by dinner arriving, and lost my train of thought)

    We also have the cherry on top of Liberty Counsel, “a non-profit public interest law firm and ministry that provides free legal assistance in defense of “Christian religious liberty, the sanctity of human life, and the traditional family.”

    More as I pull my thoughts together.

  17. Aliasalpha says

    So he suggests sex with the wife can get boring so looks to other men instead of other women? Instead of doing a gingrich by cheating on his current wife with his next one, he just wants to do a gingrich…

  18. BlackHumor says

    For whatever it’s worth, for a long time around junior high I found most other guys insufferable and would only hang out with girls (except for a few exceptions, all REALLY long standing and close male friends). Then in high school somehow guys got less bad and I started having more mixed gender friend groups.

    I think it had something to do with puberty, probably. A lot of guys trying to relate to the first buds of their sexuality by being crude and a little mean about it can make guys like me who didn’t want to relate to their sexuality in that way more than a little uncomfortable. Then everyone gets used to it, most of us become more mature about it, and everything’s relatively nice again.

  19. F says

    Homosexuality is too powerful to resist

    Completely untrue. But Gay Sex With Brownian is too powerful to resist. And it’s still Gay Sex even if you aren’t the same sex/gender as Brownian. Much better than heroin.

  20. M, Supreme Anarch of the Queer Illuminati says

    I am not really a big supporter of the whole “anti-gay bigots are secretly closeted gay men” meme.

    Same here — part of why I declared myself Supreme Anarch was so that I’d be unauthorized to make public announcements about homophobes being preemptively rejected from the queer world whenever a straight person pulled the “homophobes are closet cases” in a particularly creepily homophobic way.

    On the other hand, with a few people my “vote off the island” button seems to be stuck. Paul Cameron is one; Orson Scott Card, as mentioned earlier in the thread, is another. I’m afraid that we of the Queer Illuminati may actually be stuck with them.

  21. mynameischeese says

    Here’s on example of a man who prefers female company:

    (His writing can be really problematic, though.)

    I had a phase when I was younger where I was always the token female among male friends. But I went out of my way to make friends with women. It took some effort, but it was worth it. I think a lot of women perform certain behaviors that make them outwardly appear like those vacant women idolised on TV, but underneath they are not like that. Also, a lot of women lack the sense of entitlement it takes to ignore gender roles and insist on partaking in “male” activities. And then there’s the fact that if a group is dominated by men (like Physics Society) a lot of women will be put off just because they don’t want to have to deal with male entitlement.

  22. smrnda says

    On relating to different people of different genders; I always had a mixed gender and mixed orientation peer group, so I’ve rarely not had male friends, but I sometimes kept thinking “the guys I am friends with are probably different in some way from the type of guys who don’t have female friends” and I think that goes beyond the macho man versus metrosexual stereotypical clash.

    One thing I found from a few men that I met who had pretty much no female friends is that many of them would like to have them, but feel pressured by a male peer groups to keep it all male, or in some cases just found it hard to establish friendships with women, or in other cases wanted a romantic relationship so badly that friendships with women didn’t work out. In some cases I think it was just an awkwardness of relating, the way some white people are just sort of clueless about how to relate to non-white people.

  23. curtcameron says

    A couple of years ago, David Klinghoffer (of the Discovery Institute) published something similar, saying that if same-sex marriage is legalized, women will be hurt.

    How will women be hurt? Because men will be so consumed by their lust for other men that they won’t pay any attention to women. As far as I know, Klinghoffer presents himself as heterosexual, but there seems to be some major projection going on here.

  24. dianne says

    Paul Cameron is so far in the closet he’s behind the shoe racks. But there’s simply no way he’s not gay. Hets find straight sex loads of fun.

    But just for fun, suppose we take his premise that marital sex is boring seriously. If marital sex is boring and discouraging gay sex is a good thing, shouldn’t we allow and encourage gays to get married so they’ll end up with the same yawn worthy sex as straights? Just asking.

  25. dianne says

    But there is no need to resist gay sex with Brownian because it is completely benign and harmless.

  26. says

    From my own personal experience, I am a male who tends to favor female company. I currently hang out around other males more, but this is largely because I am an engineer and most of my coworkers are male. On that, the last period in my life where I had a more equal exposure to males and females was in high school, so the immaturity of my peers was certainly a factor as I was treated like I was a “player” who was just trying to get laid by all those females I hung out with. That treatment caused me to become less comfortable when it came to socializing with females. (Of course, I could imagine a female hanging out with a lot of males being viewed as a slut. So I can see how peer pressure would prevent women from having a bunch of male friends. Also, my younger brother seems to have a similar personality as mine, and, sadly, I treated him like a player just as my peers had treated me. Shame. 🙁 )

  27. RFW says

    Two comments:

    1. I have come to dislike solo sex, or at least to perform it solely as a hygienic measure to clear the pipes. Pleasurable in a way, but it’s just not as much fun, not as pleasurable as when I’m interacting with my b.f. even though our encounters sometimes lay an egg. So to speak. [I’m a gay male.]

    Footnote to comment #1: there’s a whole raft of comedies waiting to be written on the theme of gay sexual encounters gone wrong. If anyone is tempted, a warning: if you’re squeamish, don’t even try.

    2. The inability of heterosexual studs to form emotional or psychological connections with women may explain the existence of fag-hags and fruit flies. Women are far from clueless, and (taking a speculative leap) it’s easy to believe that they soon learn that many men are faking their attachment. Form a friendship with a gay man, and you can be sure that it’s a genuine friendship, not a fake one with the ultimate goal of using you as a sperm receptacle.

    If there are any straight women reading who consider themselves fh’s or ff’s, I’d like to see their responses to this hypothesis.

  28. says

    I knew a kid once who was cute and funny. He had so much personality and these big puppy dog eyes that just made you wanna hold him. He couldn’t keep a girlfriend to save his life. He wouldn’t ever fight with them or do anything even remotely dickish but they all drifted away within weeks and he was depressed about the whole thing. Then one day I saw him and he was beaming so hard my eyes hurt to look at him. He’d found the solution to his problem. His pastor cured him of his lust for men and now he could be with a woman without wishing she was guy. I asked why being with a guy was a problem and he looked at me like I had three heads. Well he drifted away for a while then about 5 months later I see him again in a store, he runs up behind me and grabs me in a great big bear hug ( or at least as big as a 130 pounds gets you ) I turn around and he’s got a boyfriend. He thanked me for asking him that awful question, it got him to wondering just what the hell was so bad about being with a guy. Fortunately for him he found there wasn’t a damn thing wrong with it, in fact it was pretty fucking amazing.

  29. Menyambal --- Sambal's Little Helper says

    Homosex is always better? Only if you are masturbating.

    I’m a straight guy, and when I’m having sex with a woman, I’m like, “Tits! At last!” If I was having sex with a guy, I’d be like, “Oh, look, a penis—I’ve got one.” While masturbating, on the other hand, I have to go to some trouble to avoid noticing I’m caressing a cock, in a situation where a gay man would be having at least twice the fun.

    The only pure-pleasure advantage I see to the mechanics of gay sex is knowing a little more about how the other person’s equipment works—learning their personal pleasure preferences is going to take some communication, just like for straight folks. The attraction/orientation is the key, and it sounds like this guy is confused about that. Very, very confused.

    Attraction, communication and love are all part of fun happy sex.

    A well-written article, especially the bit about the poor man’s wife.

  30. mynameischeese says

    Strangely enough, our local politician came out with something similar, but he took it even further by implying that there would be no future generations if gay marriage was legal [because all the men would be too busy humping each other to have any straight sex at all]:

  31. Jerry says is helpful. A search of “sexual arousal homophobic men” resulted in many links. The first one is:

    Is homophobia associated with homosexual arousal?
    Adams, Henry E.; Wright, Lester W.; Lohr, Bethany A.
    Journal of Abnormal Psychology, Vol 105(3), Aug 1996, 440-445. doi: 10.1037/0021-843X.105.3.440

    The short answer seems to be “yes”.

  32. lirael_abhorsen says

    You’re a sciencey kind of guy, and in my experince (being a sciencey kind of gal, having gone to a tech school with a lot of women who are similar), it’s pretty common for geeky women to have had problems relating to other women as a kid (and often, to be sitting on a massive pile of internalized sexism as a result, that then has to be worked through). So if you hang out with other sciencey folks, maybe that’s why you know a decent number of women who fit this profile.

  33. invivoMark says

    This… makes a ton of sense to me. I hadn’t considered it. I do hope the post you hinted at comes to fruition.

  34. says

    That is not a terrible hypothesis at all. However, the reality of my situation is that two of the three examples that immediately spring to mind from my peer group are artsy folks to their cores. That being said, over the years my female friends have been science-oriented.

  35. John Horstman says

    Weird, as a psychologist I would assume Cameron has heard of projection. He must simply lack the self-awareness to see that this reads as a desperate instance of it.

    By the way, I agree very much that a lot of anti-gay bigots are not themselves gay, and when one combines bigotry with this kind of language, I also agree that “self-hating closet case” is the most likely scenario. It happens enough that people like Cameron may well be overrepresented among virulent, outspoken anti-gay bigots (as suggested by the study described here, though I’d have to read a bit more about the method used, since it strikes me as possible that it’s not actually measuring what it purports to be measuring:; I’d be wealthier than Elton John if I had a nickle for every time I’ve heard/seen gay sex described as a temptation to be resisted by nominally-straight anti-gay bigots. If one really thinks that many/most people who self-identify as straight would give up on heterosex if homosexuality was universally accepted, I’m not sure how any other conclusion than projection makes sense.

    Whatever the relationship between gay hatred and self-hatred by gay men, I find that particular explanation sometimes borders on succumbing to ‘shaming’ straight men for being gay, and that makes me uncomfortable.

    If this is being deployed (intended or interpreted) in a homophobic manner, that is bad. I think I’ve only seen it used in a way that I’ve interpreted as calling out hypocrisy, though it’s entirely possible I’ve been misreading intent it its use. I’ll have to try to remember to ask whenever I hear it brought up from now on.

  36. John Horstman says

    Disinterest in heterosex could indicate asexuality, too, but the whole ‘homosex is awesome’ bit overloaded my gaydometer (the “Self-identified Straight” setting lowers the resistance of the metering circuit in order to measure finer differences in gaydar reflection, aiding in identification of bisexual/pansexual/omnisexual individuals; thankfully, it has a built-in breaker to prevent damage in the case of closeted individuals).

  37. John Horstman says

    Interesting; I like hanging out with women, generally, more than men, though the breakdown of my social circle tends to fluctuate. Part of it is that, as a Women’s Studies major and feminist activist, I’m getting really sick of dealing with casual misogyny and prefer to be around people who ‘get it’ with respect to feminism; these tend to be overwhelmingly women (and people in LGBT circles). Even your average not-overtly-hateful guy tends to have internalized a lot of sexism, and it makes me uncomfortable to be around in and of itself, and additionally because I feel a strong internal motivation to call it out but also strong social pressure to not call it out. Patriarchy includes strong pressure for men to behave (and think) in terrible ways with respect to others (and particularly Others), while women tend to be socialized more strongly toward communal behaviors that I find more pleasant to be around (I should also acknowledge the possibility I like being someone with more social privilege in the group, that I enjoy being around women more because they’re socialized toward deference to me; I don’t *think* that’s what’s going on, and I try to take conscious steps to make sure I’m not asserting privilege with my friends, but given that it’s hard to see one’s own privileged positions, even with training, I should acknowledge the possibility). That said, the widespread buy-in to sexist cultural institutions extends to a lot of women as well, which greatly restricts the pool of people, period, with whom I enjoy spending large amounts of time.

  38. Forbidden Snowflake says

    I’ve heard at least one woman say that to her, one of the benefits of having a gay male friend is being sure that his interest in her person isn’t just ’cause it’s warm under her skirt.

  39. Forbidden Snowflake says

    I don’t know if you’ve seen Stephanie’s analysis of a related study, but you haven’t mentioned it. Take a look, if you haven’t.

  40. Azuma Hazuki says

    This kind of thing is depressing 🙁 There seems to be such a war among the sexes in straight couples. How are there 7 billion of us if it’s apparently so hard for men and women to get along?

    And yes, that last line of his is definitely NdGT worthy, the one that sort of gives the joke away. I also dislike the “homophobes are closet cases” meme, but it’s become memetic for a reason: it’s true rather surprisingly often.

    It sounds like this man has no real sexual relationship with his wife, and that’s a sad thing.

  41. lpetrich says

    There’s another reason that some heterosexual people object to homosexuality — they consider it gross and disgusting.

    Interestingly, Greta Christina once claimed in a video on atheism and sexuality that some homosexual people consider heterosexuality disgusting. So that sort of “reason” may be rather general.

  42. hoary puccoon says

    Nobody is going to speak up for marital sex, here? My suspicion is, the real reason so many people are in monogamous relationships is that they’re often lots of fun. You can relax and not be self-conscious that your body isn’t perfect, that you might sweat or burp or fart. You don’t have to worry about whether you’re impressing your partner or that confessing what you really enjoy will be a turnoff.

    Of course, if what you’d really enjoy would be a partner of a different gender from your current partner, that’s a problem. But it doesn’t mean there’s anything wrong with marriage. It just means people like Paul Cameron are in the wrong marriage.

  43. says

    I’ve long been of the opinion that the people who are most obsessively driven to do something about the gay problem are closet cases. That not all homophobes are closet cases is a result of them bringing a lot of non-closet cases into the movement.

  44. Azkyroth, Former Growing Toaster Oven says

    While masturbating, on the other hand, I have to go to some trouble to avoid noticing I’m caressing a cock

    I have never even heard of this problem. O.o

  45. crylock says

    I loved this post! Thank you for posting it. It really brought together a bunch of thoughts I’d been having that had never quite gelled. And I have to say, that gif of Neil DeGrass Tyson so perfectly describes the “I don’t know what to say to that” feeling that I nearly slid out of my chair laughing.

    Thanks also to those who commented– several relevant issues have been touched on, issues that could each bear extensive discussion.

  46. smrnda says

    I’ve heard very high reports on marital and long-term monogamous sex, mostly because you learn to ‘get’ the other person sexually, figure out what turns them on, they figure out what turns you on, and you can become more and more open about your sexual desires as time goes by and can kind of just accept that the other person knows what you like sexually the way they know you like your steak rare and your coffee with cream but not sugar, what preferences you have for laundry detergent and which brand of over the counter pain-killers you like.

    Married sex might slow down just because sex is slowing down, but I think it could be the case that there would be more novelty in marital sex than casual sex in a way.

  47. Nepenthe says

    I’ve read one lesbian writer (I think it was Elana Dykewomon) say something along the lines of “it’s like cooking with someone who already knows where everything in your kitchen is”.

  48. Gen, Uppity Ingrate says

    Heart = warmed. Great story, thanks so much for sharing, makes me feel all warm and fuzzy (and these days it seems I ALWAYS need more warm and fuzzy).

  49. Gen, Uppity Ingrate says

    Word. While monogamy is not for everyone and polyamory is absolutely great if everyone involved consents, marital sex rules.

  50. Happiestsadist, opener of the Crack of Doom says

    There’s no such thing as “sex addiction”. Please try for some actual skepticism, scientific literacy is such a useful skill to learn.

  51. Aska says

    There could definitely be some truth in this. I prefer to have male friends who are either married / in a steady relationship, and/or gay. It might be unfair to genuinely nice, straight, single guys, but it just takes the pressure off. I don’t have to worry about giving those “mixed signals” that get us wimmins into so much trouble, or about whether they’re friendly / agreeing with me / joining in topics that interest me because they have an ulterior motive in getting my attention, or because they just like talking to me.

    Plus, I hate confrontations, so I really dread those situations when there’s suddenly a hand on my lower back (or lower than the lower back) and a hand on my thigh and a voice in my ear and apparently I totally signalled that I wanted dick all evening and should we find a room? (I’m asexual, for the record.) And the best I’m capable off is to make a vague excuse and then slink off as soon as I think I can leave without being followed.

    Lots of straight guys probably don’t walk around with a permanently beeping “who wants my penis inside them” radar, but those who do, as well as the “oh no, friendzone, it’s the worst possible thing!” meme, have definitely affected my ability to see single straight men as close friends.

  52. smrnda says

    I would love to cook with someone like that. I mean, I don’t know where stuff in my kitchen is at most of the time 🙂 Great analogy there, it makes me want to read anything else I can find by her.

  53. smrnda says

    It could be that some males who experience same sex attraction are part of subcultures where it’s unacceptable, and have internalized the idea that it’s bad and they shouldn’t do it. I tend to find that religious people tend to do worse than others in believing that their own personal experience can generalize to the whole population, so said guy might assume that nobody else is talking about it because they, too, are ashamed, fighting hard against temptation, and if the shame went away for an instant a gay sex orgy would happen.

    I mean, most straight guys I talk to tell me that they don’t *get* being gay the way that they might not *get* what’s so special about some type of obscure cuisine. They don’t obsess about it. My take is that a lot of the anti-gay bigotry is self-talk from closet cases who have to keep telling themselves what an abomination it is so they don’t go out and do it.

  54. says

    This guy is not very supportive of straight people. He doesn’t take them seriously! I mean, of course I’m gay too, I would never want to be straight, but just because we don’t understand others’ sexualities doesn’t mean we should say they’re not real.

  55. im says

    “Also… threesomes are a thing, Mr. Cameron. Just throwing that out there.”

    You, sir, are an evil genius of the highest caliber. I hope he reads that. This is what happens when an irresistable overhyped pleasurable act meets an immovable self-repression.

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