I had a horrible moment last year when I realised that I was slipping out of the target age group for Triple J. I grew up with Triple J, and found heaps of my current favourite music by listening to the Js as I drove to and from uni, work, pubs, band practice – wherever, really. So it’s been a hard time, coming to realise that fuck… I’m getting old.
I’ve now decided that the problem isn’t my age. It’s the shaping and demands of a changing music industry, and that Aussie artists in particular are being forced to conform to whatever mass marketing sensation is currently the new black. But more of that rant another time.
There were a few things that signaled for me that it was time to find a different radio station. The first was that I was starting to think about finding something to listen to when I had JJJ blaring away in the car. Looking for some music while you’re listening to music? Not a good sign. Another sign was when I found myself mentally correcting grammar and syntax. The third? Lack of patience when it came to overly produced garbage.
The final sign was when content started to make me shake my head.
When I think about things that offend me, at the top of my list would be words and actions that promote inequality. Words like faggot or gay. Because what is actually being said is that to be these things – to be gay – makes someone lesser. Think about it. It’s being used as a put down. As an accusation. As a derogatory term. As a word to shut down someone, or to question their credibility as a human being.
Which ultimately means that being gay is a bad thing, a wrong thing, a thing that automatically make someone lesser.
Who I love doesn’t make me lesser.
The problem we face though is that in Australia, being gay means you do not have equal rights. The day before I came out, I had the same rights as anyone else. The very second I opened my mouth and said it, I lost that equality. And there are people who believe this is just as it should be.
We know the political faces behind the policies and bigotry, but what about when it is closer to home. Your brother, for example. Your workmate. Your friend.
I don’t understand what the divisive issue is.
Why does the gender of my beloved make me lesser than you?
I can’t accept the “biblical” arguments, mainly because of inconsistencies and the lack of love behind them. I won’t accept the political arguments, mainly because the political parties we’re lumped with at the moment don’t seem to have anyone’s best intentions at heart.
So instead, I look at it based in the realistic world of linguistics.
When you call someone a faggot, or declare something to be gay? You are affirming that belief that I am lesser, because of my sexuality. When you try to use words such as dyke to be degrading or as a put down? You are saying that who I love makes me shit.
Which is why I say:
Please don’t drop the F Bomb.