derekI’ve heard a lot of judgment about these guys, and over the years, other men who choose to express with feminine energy. It’s almost like LESS feminine gay men (who usually don’t realize that they’re a touch fem, too) feel they’re better than other same sex-attracted men who are MORE feminine.

This mentality actually accepts and reinforces prejudice attitudes that so ignorantly assign and reserve gender roles for all people in a traditional manner—the same prejudice that gay folks suffer through every day.

Although it’s true that the way these men present themselves matches (to the tee) a negative stereotype of homosexual men in our society, I don’t think it’s entirely appropriate to (1) assume that these guys are being anything other than what, how and who they really are as individuals or (2) hold them responsible for the fact that this presentation of gender is considered “negative” in our society.

I have run into both these particular men on occasion in Atlanta (years before the show was ever aired) and they have always presented themselves publicly in a way that is very close to what is now being seen on screen. They’ve always come off as very artistic, creative, eclectic, eccentric personalities with lots of androgenic energy opposed to just some clowns putting on a show for the public.

It’s unfortunate that our society chooses to employ stereotypes and satire to broad-brush and humiliate sections of certain groups of people—but that isn’t the victims’ fault. Bully behavior is a decision society makes.

It’s important to recognize that there really are people who express their sexuality and gender identity with this kind of androgyny—it’s not just a punchline created by television producers.

Individuals have the right to present their own gender/sexuality in a way that feels comfortable and natural to them—no matter how funny or ridiculous it seems to the rest of society.

In this case, these guys happen to be entertaining through television, and simultaneously furthering a stereotype of what we may assume is their own group—but I submit to you that this is because of the ignorance of others, not necessarily their conscious willingness to be “Sambos.” Other groups of people have done the same throughout time—and many continue to every day.

Same sex attracted folks (and people in general) will be much less embarrassed by these kinds of images when they accept that although extreme feminine presentation is not the ONLY way of being for homosexual men, it is ONE acceptable way of being, as it represents choice and freedom of expression.

by Randevyn Piérre

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