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The Gay Test

Freedom Requires Wings | by on




Am I the only one getting tired of the “gay tests” that keep making the rounds of the internet? Not because they stereotype heterosexual males. Not because apparently anyone with eyes in their nut is apparently now gay. Not because they’re painfully misused and overdone.

No, what annoys me the most is the fact that penguins have no place on a launch pad – and neither do a multitude of scantily clad women. I mean, I don’t know which country they’re in that just happens to have penguins that are able to wander onto conveniently placed helipads – but most of those countries are pretty chilly. I don’t mean to look down on the effort here, but they must be cold. 
 Hell, even in warmer climates, it’s possible to be cold.

I don’t know, maybe it’s the fact that I was much more interested in the helicopter than the women sitting on it, but I’m pretty sure I didn’t notice the penguin until the caption pointed it out. Does this mean I am Not Gay? Can the state of being Not Gay be truly considered valid if the test subject involved is not strictly heterosexual or homosexual? Is my asexuality a factor in this? Is it truly relevant? Is Not Gay really a title that requires the capitalisation of the first letter of each word? Who knows?

But I was suddenly struck by an abstract rage! I had to know more! I had not seen the penguin, was I (insert suitably dramatic noise) Not Gay (capitalisation optional)?
Bad news: You use a computer that someone
A simple Google search for “gay test” quickly brought up a whole plethora of images. Some of them were obvious; some of them were just a little too graphic for me to need to be seeing at that time of day. I whittled down the options, though, and now I think I can unequivocally say that I have found the true way of figuring out if you are gay or not. Forget journeys of self-discovery and long, in-depth discussions with your innermost self. What you really need is to see some half-naked women. Unless you're not a teenage boy that has no concept of what a woman is, then you can go with the self-discovery. Yeah. Never say I'm not clear with what I say.
Never mind that anyone with a preference for women would be more likely to look at them than the penguin/ship/Xbox controller, and never mind that these memes tend to be made by young teens that hang about on 9Gag and such sites and spout homophobia and misogyny continuously (meanwhile reminding us what “nice guys” they are, and how their being “friendzoned” is the worst thing ever), these tests are DEFINITIVE and SCIENTIFIC.

Now I get annoyed at these posts, not just because it reduces your orientation down to how observant you happen to be at the time, but because it trivialises a very real issue – homophobic clinics and so called “cures” for homosexuality. Think I’m overreacting? Let’s take a look at NARTH, shall we? That’s the National Association for Research & Therapy of Homosexuality. Sounds pretty fishy already, right?
I don't think the controller was there in the original photo,
do you?
Well, you’d be right. Based in the US, they are a unique secular organisation, and they offer connections to therapists that claim to be able to “cure” homosexuality. They have been known to frequently associate with religious groups, but the organisation itself is not religiously based. Instead, it states that it was set up as a kind of antithesis to their idea that the American Psychiatric Association and similar "had totally stifled the scientific inquiry that would be necessary to stimulate a discussion [about homosexuality]."
Funnily enough, NARTH is a little like that one child in the corner that’s still screaming that the moon is made of cheese, in a room of adults that keep saying that the moon is in fact made of rock. The adults in this particular metaphor include the American Psychiatric Association, the Royal College of Psychiatrists, and the Australian Psychological Society. Competent organisations, in other words, and just in case you were worried for the reputability of your own orientation or if you happen to think that being gay is unnatural (I have no idea of the actual reader demographic, can you tell?), then let me tell you that these organisations all say that sexual minorities are perfectly normal, caused by biological causes, and they all have specifically stated that ex-gay therapies are at best a myth, and at worst seriously harmful to the health of the individual involved.
If you can't see the ship, however, you're
an idiot
But NARTH’s apparent obliviousness to the general scientific census isn’t the most hilarious thing in this entire story. No, that would be the prestigious Sigmund Freud award, given each year at NARTH’s annual conference. Some of the recipients are traditional homophobes, it seems, but some of them have apparently gained qualifications in irony. George Rekers was awarded the Sigmund Freud in 2000. In 2010, he resigned from NARTH.
The reason? He hired a male escort from a gay escort service for two weeks. Apparently it was to carry the luggage and convert him to heterosexuality. I don’t know how much luggage there was, but two weeks is an awful long time for that sort of thing. Oh, and let’s not forget that the escort himself said that there was no luggage carrying involved, if you get my drift.
The other amusing recipient of the award (out of the five men that have won it), was Warren Throckmorton. He received the award in 2002, and in 2006 he severed all ties with them and has since become a critic of their work and claims. The reason? Gerald Schoenewolf and NARTH’s other executives argued that at the time of slavery in America, Africa was “primarily a jungle” and “life there was savage ... and those brought to America, and other countries, were in many ways better off." Essentially, it’s okay to forcibly take someone from the place they live and put them to work without pay because their society is not ordered exactly like yours. Way to go, NARTH. Oh, and Schoenewolf also thinks that the civil rights movement, the women’s rights movements, and the gay right movements were “irrational and destructive”. 
If anyone is interested, this is the escort that Rekers
hired. Source
Essentially out of the five people given an award for being the best NARTH can come up with, one of them turns out to have homosexual tendencies, and another is their biggest critic. Way to go, NARTH.

So, even though I’m making light of NARTH and pointing out how pathetic they are, it’s still a major problem. It means that young kids that come out, that are in the custody of parents that may not be open to other orientations, may be put into therapy. To “cure” them. And they will grow up believing that they are somehow wrong, or sick, and that’s just not good for anyone.

That’s why I’m getting tired of the “gay tests”. They’re making the idea of being tested to see if you’re gay normal. And as you may have noticed from the “tests” I’ve scattered about this post, most of them end with the words “I have some bad news for you”. Because, according to idiot meme-makers online, being gay is somehow “bad news”. 
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