Letter: “Gay” Is A Four-Letter Word (Meaning Love)

“Gay” Is A Four-Letter Word (Meaning Love)

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Why do I tell people that I am gay? I want gays, lesbians, bisexuals and transgenders who feel ashamed and alone in their suffocating closets to see they can risk living open and real in this crazy, cruel, beautiful world.

I grew up on a farm in Illinois. When I graduated from high school in 1964, I did not know that I was gay. No teacher in high school or college told me Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci, Walt Whitman, James Baldwin, and a multitute of well-known men, past and present, were in love and made love with men.

I wish I had known and enjoyed my sexuality when I was a teenager as many heterosexuals do. More gays, lesbians and bisexuals experience sexual adolescence in their 30s, 40s or older because they did not know or did not accept their sexuality when they were younger.

I refuse to invest my hours, calls, letters and affection in friendships with people who do not know my romantic attraction to certain men. Such friendships can fade, vanish or turn to hostility when they find out the truth. Why should I play the fool? I refuse to be a discreet wimp!

What healthy heterosexual man would deny or keep people guessing about his strong romantic attraction to certain women? So why would I deny or keep people guessing about my strong romantic attraction to men? My mother taught me to tell the truth. I refuse to live a lie!

I would rather be hated, insulted and rejected by some for who I am than loved by them for who I am not. I refuse to let people make me feel or act as if my sex and romance with men is a shameful secret or a sick sin quarantined to gay bars, adult bookstores, dark parks and closed bedrooms. I choose to openly celebrate my feelings just as a man and woman in love would.

The main purpose of sex is not to make more babies, especially with a world population of more than 7 billion. The main purpose of sex is a mutually affectionate, pleasurable connection between people—female and male, female and female, male and male.

One of the best-kept secrets is the multitude of bisexual and bi-curious men. Many males who yell “faggot” at others have sex with males, or want to, but do not have the balls to say so. Some males are terrified of their own hidden, repressed desires—scared if they tried it once with a male, they would enjoy it so much that they would want to keep getting it on with males.

If it were not for the terrible taboos from religion, family and friends, most, if not all, men would be strongly and sexually attracted to at least one man during their lifetime and would enjoy sex and romance with him. Sex between men would become as popular as baseball, basketball, soccer or wrestling.

Sadly many parents would much rather have their son injure a man in boxing or kill a man in war than have their son be in love and make love with a man …

If I am sexually attracted to a man who is married to a woman, and if he is sexually attracted to me, I hesitate to have sex with him. I do not want him lying to his wife and getting in fights with her because of me if she does not know and accept his bisexuality. Many married men feel they have the right to have sex with other women or men, but they demand their wives to have sex with no other men or women under the threat of divorce or violence. I want any bisexual man I have sex with to be honest and fair with his wife or girlfriend. No lies! No double standard!

Until any man anywhere on this earth can tell his family, friends and coworkers he is in love with a man just as freely as he could tell them he is in love with a woman, and until any woman anywhere on this earth can tell her family, friends and coworkers she is in love with a woman just as freely as she could tell them she is in love with a man, our freedom struggle must continue!

I would not give up my strong romantic attraction for certain men for all the money and fame in the world!

—Don Schrader

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