The Horrific 4 is a fiction series deliberately pushing to an extreme the worse prejudices seen in the Arab world, sometimes with a satirical tone. The aim is to bust the taboos around discussing the real sensitive topics fueling those prejudices. The 4 characters are not meant to represent role models. Both appreciative and unappreciative readers' comments will be published. Insults and derogatory language will be edited out.

3.Big-Balled Queens


I left off my previous piece about the misguided homophobia of my parents.  I wish I could say that the homophobia I encounter ends there. Unfortunately it doesn’t. Homos can be as homophobic as the rest, we somehow managed to internalize the plague that is hunting us.

I’m not sure if we did this in our quest to adapt and disappear in our surroundings or if it’s some kind of natural reaction to the avalanche of (negative) queer stereotypes we see online or on TV.

Let me just flagellate myself first before I flagellate the rest (flagellation will be a recurring theme in my writing, not sure if I should be worried about that or not.) I myself often used to express disgust at overtly feminine queers. You know who I’m talking about, it’s the ones you love to hunt down and beat up.  The ones who couldn’t care less about what people think of them. The ones showing a builders cleavage on purpose as they never give up on getting their fat ass in those skinny jeans. The ones who like to molest their own eyebrows and make them disappear only to replace them with pencil lines. Yeah those ones, the “crazy” ones.

Now I said I was disgusted by them, but let me clarify why. The disgust wasn’t because I found their behavior disgusting; no it was because I found them dangerous. Now you probably wonder how they can be dangerous? I mean it’s just a bunch of fags with limp wrists right? But they used to be more than just that for me.

I used to think of them as the idiots that enforce the stereotype people have of us. I mean why would you walk around like that? Aren’t you just asking for it?

Every time I saw one I knew in public, I would pray to God (which is surprising because I’m not really a God-type) that they wouldn’t approach me and start talking to me. I did not want to be associated with them, I mean being in the closet and all that. It just wouldn’t be really that helpful. We all try to live up to that ideal of Arab machismo, with varying results.

But then I realized I was blaming the wrong people. Instead of blaming these queens, we should actually celebrate them. They show no fear or they just don’t know that fear that we (the regular gays) know and internalize. They couldn’t care less about what some morally uptight idiot thinks of them. They’re just there. Take it or leave it. In a way, they lay the groundwork for us.  If you live in an extremely homophobic society and you still go out like that, then you have balls. Big balls.

So instead of blaming them for supposedly harming our struggle, we should focus on going after the people who harass them or even worse, beat them up. Those idiots who use Arab culture as an excuse to harass them. Why should we accept their homophobia and make it ours? It really just doesn’t make sense. I don’t go around internalize other people’s fears, “oh you’re scared of body fat, well let me be scared of body fat too then.”

Now I try to convince my gay friends to let go of their homophobia. How can you claim to want to live a free life but in the meantime you deny others, who fight the same struggle as you, that same right? Hypocrisy much? But so far I convinced no one; I think we all need some urgent psychiatric help because of this.  Why oh why, do we have to make it so hard on ourselves? I mean, we can’t all be that sadomasochistic, can we? I can’t even blame it on them not being educated or not being world wise. Most of them are university graduates, some of them have even studied abroad or lived abroad for a few years. Is it something innate? Do those crazy right-wingers in the US perhaps say the truth, when they say that our culture will be eternally backward? I don’t hope so.

So what I’m trying to say is, stop being some morally uptight queer and get rid of your misplaced, ill-advised homophobia, you idiots! We already have enough homophobes around, we don’t need more.

We struggle coming out of the closet, as we’re afraid of how people would react and how society would castigate us. But in the meantime, we do the same with people who actually have the balls to come out.  Do we suffer from some kind of gay schizophrenia?  Have we watched too many coming-out movies and developed some kind of Stockholm syndrome and started caring about our homophobes?

If some queers want to walk around like they’re the reincarnation of some long dead, obscure diva, you should celebrate that. Go after them and instead of beating them up, thank them!

I mean obviously don’t do that all the time; I think that would be stalking. Do we actually have stalking laws in this country? It would be amazing if we didn’t, I have a whole list of guys I want to stalk. But that’s something for another time.

Oh I didn’t expect I could rant on for so long about this, I think it’s time to go outside and chase some feminine queens and suffocate them with my love and flog them with expensive silk (there you have the flagellation again). 

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#1 Terrene 2013-07-08 19:59
I’m really interested that you’ve expanded on the story Moody hinted at in the first post (“Most of us somehow took over the straight guys’ disgust and fear for any dude who dares to be a bit effeminate or a bit different”). I’m aware of lots of groups of people who also suffer from this ‘self-victimisa tion’, (people of colour in majority white societies, people with mental health issues, people with disabilities etc) so I hope I can identify with and understand the ‘doublethink’ that is being fought here. I love the supportive message of this story :-)

It also made me think about another aspect that I imagine must be ingrained in so many people in the society this is set in – misogyny and undervaluing and underappreciati ng women. In ‘Hi World’ Moody says things like “I still don’t get lesbians and they don’t get us” and “Take that bitch, on the sex front we won!” which sounds like cultural bias along the same lines. Am I correct in thinking this? Are there gay men who dismiss and dehumanise women in the same way as many traditional men do? Are some women seen as allies (like the Ahlam character in the Independent Woman story) or are they treated with mistrust as well? Do some gay men identify with the veiled and covered women trapped in their homes or do they want to support the practice as ‘cover’ to divert attention from themselves? Do gay men feel they have any allies, or are they all fraught with danger? (like the ‘liberal’ officer worker in ‘Us Arabs don’t have Gays’ – some boxes ticked doesn’t mean all boxes ticked!)

I’m really looking forward to more stories. Especially if the different characters meet up in this particular world. Thank you for putting yourself out there with your writing. It’s appreciated :-)




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