There’s something caught in your throat

Has anyone else noticed how often the language of “shoving it down our throats” comes up when straight people want to complain about gay people? (Seriously, people say stuff like this all the time. Just Google “gay shoved down our throats” without quotes and you’ll see what I mean.)

Whether intentional or not, I think this language has its roots in gay panic – homophobia.

People having something shoved down their throats are being physically violated by someone else. There are victims, and there are predators. The tacit accusation here is, gay people are trying to victimize straight people in a graphic, physical way.

Given the history of anti-gay fear about how the gays are after kids and whatnot, I think “cramming it down our throats” functions today like a code way to remind people that gay folks are sexual predators (much the way some white people use the word “thug” only in reference to young, black people).

It’s dog whistle language, for haters. And it’s efffffffffffffed up.

“They’re cramming the gay agenda down our throats.”

There is indeed violence actually getting invoked here, but it’s a violence of scapegoating based on bigotry, fear-mongering from sexual ignorance (and/or morbid curiosity?).

For some people, having to acknowledge that gay people exist may feel like their throats are being stuffed with gayness. But I suspect it’s just the bile of their own bigotry.