American Psycho: The Hatred for Women That Lurks in Gay and Trans Culture
How are Gal-Faced minstrels any better than Black-Faced minstrels?
In 2018, the videographer Monica Rodman published a remarkable article in The Advocate, a gay magazine. Rodman recalled being verbally abused while working on the set of a film. The director of the film, a gay man named George, was “acting unnecessarily hostile toward women, and women only. He treated the men on set as his equals and the women as subsidiaries.”
Rodman had brought up the hate that dare not speak its name: the hatred too many gay men have for women. That enmity has been noted by cultural observers going back at least as far as the gay writer Gore Vidal. It also fuels the modern trans and drag show movements.
The main reason’s obvious: to gay men, women are competition. Gore Vidal wrote about this back in the 1950s. To a gay man, the ideal mate is strong, handsome, athletic, loaded with testosterone, muscular and brave … not effeminate. In short, an idealized straight man. As Vidal saw it, this accounted for a lot of the unhappiness in the male gay community. Their goal is always out of reach.
Check Your Genital Preference, Pal
It seems that in the last few years this dissatisfaction has hardened into cold rage. Transgender activists talk about the problem of “genital preference” because straight people don’t want to date them. Any hint that transgenderism might not be normal is met with violence, most tragically at the recent shooting which took the lives of three children at the Covenant Christian elementary school in Nashville.
There is a direct line between the misogyny Gore Vidal described decades ago and the shooting in Nashville. Where women were once competition for gay men, now it is insisted that gender itself does not exist. As America’s moral foundations crumbled, the demand for celebration of the perverse has become more shrill and violent. Still, amidst all the new confusion, the old misogyny rules.
Facing the truth is always difficult. Women are amazing, miraculous beings. When faced with that much awesomeness, some people just retreat into resentment. Women are phenomenal not just in their beauty, but the way they talk, analyze problems with an insight often lacking in men, and often show twice the toughness, courage and perseverance of tough guys.
As H.L. Mencken once put it, women are “the only grand hazard a man will truly encounter.” They are “more dangerous than Cape Hatteras,” which has been trapping and demolishing sailors for centuries. Mencken concluded that to avoid women “on the basis that the game has hazards,” is an act of cowardice by “a puling and tacky fellow.”
Gal-Face Minstrel Shows
When faced with this kind of mystical and mysterious force, some people just can’t take it. (I’ve been cast on the rocks myself plenty of times.) They retreat into misogyny. It’s always been a problem in the gay community, and it’s now one in the transgender movement, with biological men taking over women’s sports and donning “gal-face,” akin to blackface.
As Rodman wrote in The Advocate:
We unknowingly excuse gay men of their misogynistic tendencies, especially when it comes to verbiage (“b****,” “girl,” etc.). And the more we are unaware, the longer we allow misogyny to exist among those whom we’ve long thought to be our brothers in arms.
Rodman also blasts drag queen RuPaul, who spuriously talks about drag as “a big f-you to male-dominated culture.” As Rodman writes:
What alarms me about this argument is that a gay man, who ostensibly believes in rejecting masculine tropes, thrives on parodying femininity. Some feminists go as far as to draw similarities to blackface: ‘When men dress in drag and supposedly imitate women, it is most often very sexist in a remarkably similar way to whites imitating racial minorities.’
Ya think? Drag queens mostly don’t try to look like middle-aged housewives or even young moms, but like strippers and prostitutes, grotesquely embracing extremely sexualized, male visions of women. Just like … racist whites painting themselves up as clownishly exaggerated depictions of African-Americans.
From Resentment to Hatred to Violence
The most misogynistic work of popular culture in my lifetime has probably been American Psycho. A 1991 novel that became a film and broadway show, it follows the serial killer Patrick Bateman as he tortures and murders several woman in New York. Liberal fans of American Psycho have pretzeled themselves into thinking the book is a satire of the excess of 1980s Reagan America. This is bunk.
Author Bret Easton Ellis, a gay man, himself sometimes comes close to admitting the truth. “Is it about gay hated of women?” he stammered in one interview. “Maybe it is. You tell me.” When asked about it by the The Guardian Ellis offered this:
If you’re writing about a misogynist, does that then make a book misogynist? I don’t think I’m a misogynist. But even if I was, so what? So you’re a misogynist – so what? So you’re a homophobe, or a racist – so what? Does that make your art less interesting? I don’t think so. Call me a misogynist. I think basically most men are misogynistic. And it is what it is.
I don’t think most men are misogynist. Do we sometimes joke about women, which is often locker room talk that conceals the fear and awe most guys have for women? Yes. That’s far from misogyny. Behind our occasional jokes and ribald double-entendres is a genuine fear and respect for one of God’s masterpieces.
Mark Judge is a writer and filmmaker in Washington, D.C. His new book is The Devil’s Triangle: Mark Judge vs the New American Stasi.