Saturday, February 16, 2008

A Response From The Hetero Male in Question

This one needs a little set up. I wrote a literal ton of stories about two superheroes called Captain Hetero and Iron Dyke. I printed one of my Iron Dyke stories when I was on the school paper at John Jay College in NYC. I assumed, New York being the liberal place its supposed to be, it would go over well. I have been writing issues of I.D. AND C.H. at Rutgers for 4 years and had nary complaint, mostly because people got the joke. At least one person at John Jay didn't. This was my response to her. It was originally printed 05/12/03

I guess I should have expected this, but , honestly, I did not. It is not that I do not understand where Prof. Yukins is coming from, because I do. I even see where she could draw her conclusions from, I really do. The only problem is that , with all due respect, she is completely, utterly wrong about all of it.
I guess I should start from the beginning. My "compilation of bigoted stereotypes and trite heterosexual male fantasies" as she put it, are really things I could not possibly think up myself. Iron Dyke’s views and opinions are an amalgam of things I’ve heard and read from actual lesbians who I am very good friends with and feminist literary theory which I am fairly well versed in. Seeing as how I am going to be a psychologist, I have also read many feminist perspectives on psychology. So I do not sit around and fantasize about man-hating lesbians; any fantasizing I do about lesbians has nothing to do with that.
Oh, and you needn’t remind me of all of the daily violence committed towards gays and women. I am a Black man after all, which makes most criticisms against my writing all the more hilarious. The fact that Yukins compares me to ultra right-wing conservatives "Minus’s writing echoes the rhetoric of social commentators like Rush Limbaugh and Pat Robertson" provided me with a very good laugh (by the way, you missed Bill O’ Reilly in that group). I hate those guys; in fact I guess if she was going to find people I was least like, they would be it. I love it when people who do not know me presume to lecture me about the plight of minorities in America. No one, and I mean no group in America has it worse than Black men, even homosexuals. You can pretend to not be gay, I cannot pretend to not be Black. So don’t give me that I’m justifying oppression garbage, I know all about it.
But I really can’t blame her for being wrong; she does not know me. And that really is the bottom line here. It’s why her whole argument against me is wrong. I can’t blame her for not knowing my opinions on things…wait, yes I can. I’ve wrote more than a few editorials in my first year of going to John Jay, and if she had read any of those, then she would know how Liberal and what a generally pissed-off Black man I am. So, keeping that little fact in mind, it means that the only bit of my writing that Prof. Yukins has read is the one thing that would piss her off. Interesting.
There’s another reason I cannot blame her for feeling the way she does, she has only read the first issue. You see, Iron Dyke is a series of short stories I’ve written; the one in the last issue was the introduction of her character. In later issues, as she is fleshed out more and we see her in interpersonal relationships, we see how her views are challenged by more level-headed thinkers. She does in fact believe very strongly in everything she said in that last issue. She sees herself as The Superhero for all gays everywhere. It is not satire or sarcasm; I’m from New Jersey, I’m very good with sarcasm. My goal with her character is to expose people who have very little sense of humor and take themselves waaay too seriously. Mission accomplished I’d say. Another thing that amuses me about all of this is that in the four years I’ve been writing her story, none of the feminists I know have reacted this way; they love Iron Dyke. And these girls are pretty damn serious about their views. Here in the big city, I’d expect that people would be sophisticated enough to understand the point. But as I said, it was only the first issue. Maybe it exposes some flaws in my writing style that I didn’t expose the entire message of the series in the first issue, but somehow I doubt it.
Prof. Yukins is right about one thing, I would like to reform the activity of feminists. Oftentimes the massage is delivered in such a way that it prevents people from hearing what they are trying to say. Feminist theories and activities often immediately alienate the very people they need to hear their message; mainstream America. I can’t really go into my views on feminism here, that’s a rant for another day. Prof. Yukins, and I think a lot of other people, completely, utterly, and hopelessly missed the point of that story. You have to be pretty open-minded to enjoy Iron Dyke. Calling me a women fearing/hating heterosexual male all you want, but please, continue to read my stuff. Maybe then you will understand me and we won’t have more of these little misunderstandings.

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