Incorrectness: Female Actors and Trojans
In an excess
of purported equality, some Hollywood actresses want to
be called "actors." How sad and self-defeating.
Doesn't opting for the male-designated noun, actor, imply
superiority of that male form? If not, why not seek equality
by extending the female form--actress--to actors; e.g.,
"Actress Tom Cruise." That would assert the
prominence of the female-designated noun. (I imagine Sarah
Bernhardt and Virginia Fabrigas, great legendary actresses,
stiffening their proud backs in resistance like affronted
we now refer to female princes? Female kings? Male seamstresses?
The Spanish, French, Italian languages award gender even
to sexless objects. The sturdy rock is "la roca,"
the flickering earring is "el arete." No sexism
there. Now note this spectacular assault on sexism: The
male organ in Spanish, "la verga," is honored
with a feminine designation, whereas breasts become "pechos,"
a masculine identification.
I use it now, I am still not at ease with "gay."
Christopher Isherwood once said that the pluralized "gays"
sounded like a reference to bliss-ninnies. But now comes
the odious word "queer," eagerly seized by dippy
academics and converted into yet another undecipherable
"theory." The rationale? Defuse the word "queer"
of its ugly meaning, arrogate it and convert it. Oh? How
about proposing "dyke theory," "kike theory,"
"nigger theory," "spik theory," "dago
theory," fag theory," "cunt theory"?
Would that defuse those hateful names, strip them of their
dangerous power? How, then does "queer," the
language of gay-bashers, purge the devastating meaning?
envy lesbians their august designation, with literary
and historical resonance. I wish we homosexual males would
consider the appellation of ... Trojans. That would confound
the football team at U.S.C.. It might even pull cute Tommy
Trojan, already attired in a toga by International Male,
out of the closet--and it would be a steadfast reminder
of safe sex.
this as an outgrowth of such a new appellation: If a boy
told his father, "Dad, I'm gay," the likely
reaction, at least at first, would be horror. Similarly,
if a boy informed his father, "Dad, I'm queer,"
the reaction might be, at least at first, double horror.
But if the boy told his father, "Dad, I'm a Trojan,"
the response might be: "Great, son, I always knew
you had it in you."
Los Angeles, California
to read John Rechy's further thoughts on
this issue in his 2007 essay, "Female Actors. Part
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Original material by John Rechy appears
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