We’ve all heard people around us use the word ‘gay‘ as a way to say something is stupid or bad. I don’t know about all of you, but I’m tired of it.. and sometimes it makes me angry to hear.
There’s been many times when past coworkers have said ‘that’s so gay‘ about something right in front of me. What I always think is somewhat amusing – bordering on condescending – is how quickly they’ll say something like ‘no offense‘ to me as if that makes them equating something stupid or silly to being ‘gay’ ok and perfectly acceptable, or forgivable..
And it’s not. It never is.
Whenever someone uses the term ‘gay’ to describe something, someone’s actions or something about someone, it’s derogatory even if the speaker may not intend it that way. Regardless of who is hearing that phrase, of who’s around you at the time, or even who you’re saying it to. You just never know who may get offended by hearing it.
For some people, that may come across as being a bit too PC about the whole thing since it’s only a ‘word’, but remember this one thing –
Imagine you’re a young closeted child who’s confused about their feelings and sexuality.. And all around you, people – family, friends, random strangers, maybe even teachers (and if they are, they should be fired!) – are using the word ‘gay’ to equate to something that is ‘less than’ everything else, that is ‘worth less’ than anything else. Just imagine how that would make you feel about yourself..
What would you do? How would you react as a 12 or 13 year old kid who’s not sure why they feel different than their peers?
It probably wouldn’t be much of a jump for that same kid to go from feeling like they have no place in the world .. to possibly considering or actually attempt suicide. And we’ve all seen in the news how much more often that seems to be happening..
..Or maybe it’s always been happening, and we just didn’t open our eyes to it before.
To me, using a derogatory word like ‘gay‘ to describe something is just another form of bullying, and we really shouldn’t be standing by and letting it continue happening.
The English language has such a variety of words that actually describe what you want to say… how about you use the right one?
This quite funny video of Ash Beckham addressing the Ignite Boulder 20 assembly has definitely been making the rounds on the social media sites and the blog-o-sphere, and gives food for thought around using ‘gay’ derogatorily.