This is something i wrote a little while ago, but i think it’s particularly relevant this week when the Australian high court has decided to overturn an equality of marriage law passed only a few months ago in the Australian capital.
“Accordingly, the ACT Act cannot operate concurrently with the Federal Act.”
The dangers of normality
Repression has become so ingrained and fundamental into the structure of the current way of living we hardly have the courage to ask why we feel the things we do, why we continue to entertain the irrational.
We cloak sex in a mystique, something that must not be talked about until those deemed by tradition to be older and wiser are no longer able to stop us. Yet sex is arguably the most natural act anyone can take part in, the perpetuation of the species, it is from sex that life is created. Has the very cause of our existence become taboo?
How is that progressive or even healthy and we wonder why peoples sexuality distorts and twist into aggression and ultimate selfishness, are they simply born this way? I would argue not at least in the majority of cases. The catholic church is an institution that advocates celebecy no pre-marital sex and no form of self gratification. Yet for all its morality over sex paedophilia has become a major problem in the preisthood. Is it that all those wishing to be priests have both homosexual or paedophilic tendencies before they join? Perhaps, but perhaps if they did it would be from already being repressed as children and further perpetuated this repression by the oath of celibacy from eyes, hand and flesh.
We pretend to ourselves and our children that the things that we do not understand, do not exist or are unnatural, not normal. We then arrogantly label ourselves as normal hiding the odd things we do that make us unique and blindly march to the tune of everyone else. Seduced by comfort we continue the march none of us willing to question, or express anything deemed unnatural, satisfied with standing still and afraid of changing the things we have gotten used to.
Homophobia, “phobia” a fear, is a prime example of this delusion of normal we think we live in, we persecute gay people as if their very existence threatens our own. As Stephen fry states there are over 407 species on the planet that we know exhibit homosexual behaviours but only one species that exhibits homophobia. But how is it logical to think that a person deriving pleasure or love from something can be wrong solely because they are not deriving it from the same place as you. The only argument I could see is if it somehow harmed others. Some people entertain this self-indoctrinating irrationality by claiming that homosexuals will actually try and “turn” the population for their own sexual gratification. A somewhat hypocritical claim from those trying to turn the entire world straight! The battle against homophobia is not only about the plight of people who not by choice but by birth were born different to a majority, but it also essentially against conformity against others trying to impose their way of living on others to reinforce their normality.
Racism is even more illogical still, the fact that a person does not look the same as you appears to be even more of an affront to peoples identity. The ability to dehumanize a person or group of people simply by skin colour, ideology, or lifestyle is the greatest threat to our species as a whole. We cannot wait for hindsight to see the ridiculousness of these situations, like we now look upon segregated drinking fountains.
It almost seems as though people’s greatest fear is that those not living the same lives as their own somehow challenge their normality. Perhaps all people really want is acceptance and it is fear of losing this or not belonging that drives them to these irrational thoughts. A person not living or accepting the way of life you choose forces you to entertain the question that there are other ways to live, and to those who truly believe there is only one way to live a life, this must be frightening.
Fear is an understandable biological response it makes us skeptical, wary and ready for the unknown but we must not let fear control our thoughts and actions so much that it turns into hate and bigotry. If fear comes from the unknown would time not be better spent in understanding, rather than in fostering hate and ignorance?
It seems to be a hangover of tradition, tradition in religion, in government and in culture from the days where we knew so little the unknown was so great and the fear so overwhelming. We created barriers to protect ourselves but caution turned to fear and denial, rational turned to irrational. Until even now when we are face to face with what we once did not understand we are still unwilling to leave the comfort of ignorance. We turned the lights on but now we cannot see the stars. There is hope but we have to learn to question, we have to learn to love instead of hate, to understand instead of fear and accept that there is no such thing as normal.
“It may be normal, darling; but I’d rather be natural.” ― Truman Capote