… the winner of the best line from a Star Wars: Episode III: Revenge of the Sith review goes to David Edelstein over at Slate, where, in “The Passion of the Sith: I dream of Jedi” he wrote:
McDiarmid isn’t the subtlest of satanic tempters. With his lisp and his clammy little leer, he looks like an old queen keen on trading an aging butt-boy (Count Dooku) for fresh meatâ€”which leaves Anakin looking more and more like a 15-watt bulb.
Maybe this is why the movie disappointed me. The whole Emperor/Anakin thing sorta did gross me out because it seemed as if the Emperor was totally hot for him… giving gays everywhere a bad name. (And also resurrecting one of the oldest gay stereotypes: the old gay man/lesbian tempting the young, innocent into the ways of queerness.)
What bothers me and worries me most (well, beside the obvious ethical implications) about this Jim West (mayor of Spokane, Washington; made some homophobic remarks; was caught in a pretty intense gay sex scandal [offering jobs to gay men via online chat, hounding those men for dates, etc.]) is that I’m guessing after this all blows over, it will ultimately look worse for gays than for the hypocritcal republicans who pretend to be straight and then do really sketchy sexual things on the side. It’s like the priest thing — while the Catholic church has suffered some loss of face for letting the sexual abuse occur, I think in the end these types of things reinforce the idea that gay men are pedophiles and sexual predators who cannot be trusted. It seems that whenever there is a gay man in a postion of power (priest, politics, etc.), all we hear about is when he comes out of the closet after doing something really bad. The “openly gay” politicians are pretty benign so we don’t hear much about them doing good things.
I wish I knew what the solution would be. I don’t think, this time, that the problem necessarily rests on the media. I think it has more to do with oppressive organizations (e.g. Catholic church, republican party) forcing their members to adopt a lifestyle (i.e. straight) that isn’t them. The psyhcic torture of pretending to be someone else (Jim West: living “this double life has been hell”) causes these men to do really bad and inappropriate things.
The internalized homophobia and self-hate casues destructive behavior that causes these closeted gay men to make bad decisions. It isn’t a problem with being gay, per say, but homophobia.