“The definition of insanity is doing the same fucking thing over and over again, and expecting shit to change. This. Is. Crazy.”
Just for the record though I am never one to shy away from profanity what was used in this quote was theirs not mine.
After hitting a wall thinking of how to approach this topic I resorted to the “Google” and was directed to a song by the English-Irish boy band One Direction titled Over Again. I thought oh what the hell and listened to the tune. Soon realizing that that was three minute of my life I would never get back again. If you search for “Over and Over Again” you find all sorts of love songs expressing the frustration involved with relationships that seem to have repeatedly failed. I would refer all of these frustrated almost exclusively heterosexual couples to my opening quote on insanity.
A personal thought that was triggered for me by the phrase over and over again was the odd question often posed to queer folk, in the 1970’s most frequently it seemed, and that was “are you a practicing homosexual”? The implication being that apparently repetition was needed to get it right. Though in my early “out years” especially in the sexual arena repetition did help performance but I quickly evolved to answering the question by saying “no I am not practicing I have it down just right, thank you”. This question of course was prompted by the extremely wrong-headed notion that the essence of being queer was who and how you were fucking, and fucking does usually involve some practice but most get it right sooner than later. Rather than certain physical acts the innate, intrinsic and profound ongoing motivation that we are hard wired with from birth or most likely even earlier is to see the world from a different window than our hetero peers. (As always a h/t to Harry Hay)
At this juncture I am torn between a further screed on my part of the correctness of Essentialist Gay Theory spurred on by having read a piece recently by Larry Kramer titled “Queer Theory’s Heist of Our History” from the anthology In Search of Stonewall from the Gay and Lesbian Review. Or should I really go down a rabbit hole and offer my take on why the Catholic Church is so intimately wrapped up in child and adolescent sexual abuse. Or perhaps the most recent revelation that nuns have been kept as sex slaves and on occasion forced to have abortions.
The Church has certainly made lame half-hearted at best attempts over and over again to address these issues with the most recent having been last week in Rome. The Pope called the world’s bishops together to address these issues comparing the abuse to “human sacrifice” perpetrated by “ravenous wolves”. Nothing I can tell that has come out of last week’s confab even remotely addresses the root causes. The Pope did acknowledge that child sexual abuse occurs in many different venues other than just homosexual abuse by male priests. This is obviously a very complex issue that if addressed honestly would involve more than invoking and trying to cast out human sacrifice by ravenous wolves.
The Church’s view on homosexuality as intrinsically sinful and not the genuine expression of human interaction that it is doesn’t help! We need to start with the bull crap of “love the sinner hate the sin” and purge that immediately. That is a really simple first step acknowledging that being Queer is not a sin. Being unable to fit that reality into their religious worldview dooms them to an insane repetition of the problem they so earnestly seem to want to address. Facing the ridiculousness and antiquated views on celibacy and women in the priesthood might be worthwhile second and third steps.
If I had my druthers though of course I’d pitch all religion out the window in favor of an atheist secular humanism making Edward O. Wilson the world’s Pope. Ah, dream on you crazy old Fairie.
So in about 700 words I have managed to careen from boy bands to Queer theory to human sacrifice by ravenous wolves to priestly celibacy to secular humanism all the while attempting to address the very simple topic of Over Again. On the outside chance there is god maybe she or he could help me find an editor.