Queer News

Gay Men Who Lesbian-Bash: What’s Up With That?

WTF? You know it’s true though. Being a lesbian is the butt of many gay guy jokes: “You’re such a lesbian!” etc.

Shortly after Mitt Romney’s new gay foreign policy spokesman, Richard Grenell, was announced, he wasscrubbing his caustic tweets about women and the media from his Twitter feed amid much attention to them. Among the women Grenell had insulted was MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow, whom he ridiculed for looking too manly: “she needs to take a breath and put on a necklace.” He also she said looks like Justin Bieber.

Many of the reports included those comments among the examples of Grenell’s tweets critical of prominent women’s appearances, like Callista Gingrich (wondering whether her “hair snaps on”) and Hillary Clinton (“starting to look liek Madeline [sic] Albright”) and some called them sexist. But the comments about Maddow actually fall into a category that gays and lesbians know by a different, more colloquial term: dyke-bashing.

Maddow wasn’t just another women whose appearance Grenell was critiquing; he was mocking her for expressing her gender as what he apparently views, negatively, as a stereotypical lesbian. (Ironically, in the process of this and the other tweets about women, Grenell was playing into a gay stereotype himself: the gay men obsessed with women’s hair and style.)

It was the kind of crack many people would expect from a homophobic straight guy. Why would a gay man make a homophobic comment about a lesbian? Actually, it’s all too common. And much of it (but certainly not all) comes from gay conservatives, often Republican, who seem to be embarrassed by much of the LGBT community as they try to blend into society’s idea of what good gays should be like. MORE

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