So, on the front of its US news section of its website, CNN had a story about lesbians kissing at a ball game (It’s no longer up front, probably because Jon Stuart called them out on it). Who thought this was ok? Who said, “hey, that’s not just newsworthy, that’s front page material!”? What the fuck? What the fucking fuck? Why do people stand up and notice when two women kiss in public? Is there someone out there who doesn’t know what lesbians are?
I know that news agencies are just out to make a quick buck, but that begs the question, why is this story a money maker? Because apparently CNN thought that Americans are shallow enough that they’ll be titillated/offended/enthralled by this story. In other words, CNN thinks Americans are unenlightened.
And no one (save Jon Stuart) complained! No one said, fuck you CNN! This isn’t news, I’m not buying this time! Maybe CNN is right: maybe we’re all just troglodytes.
Those of you who are straight and around my age, think back to your time in school. You probably knew homosexuals. Did you freak out when they kissed? Did your world-view get shattered? I’m guessing no. I know from my own life, a lesbian kiss is as normal as any other kiss, and any time someone has made a scene of pointing out two women kissing (whether out of disgust or out of excitement) he has been scolded for bigotry (it’s always a he).
So I’ve got some conflicting evidence here. On this issue, and on several others that I haven’t mentioned, my generation seems to be made up of accepting, open-minded, enlightened individuals. The media, however, treats the population as if we’re all upper-class victorian socialites with the most delicate of sensibilities. Now I spent a lot of my youth in the South, so I know this attitude exists among certain adults. So I suspect that our media wants to dumb us down and make us more close minded than we actually are, so as to…I don’t know, sell us more stuff? Not an impossibility, but a bit conspiritorial.
I guess I don’t know why we’re treated like troglodytes. I really don’t know why we don’t fight it more. Are we that defeatist, sitting around saying, “oh right, we live in America, where intellectualism goes to die.”?
Or am I out of line here, thinking that we’re more tolerant than we are? Is this the ‘liberal elitism’ that conservatives accuse us of? Am I in some way completely off base, with a categorically different understanding of the culture and the larger world than the understanding of my average fellow citizen? Once again it isn’t impossible, but that seems conspiratorial. For whatever reason, the people that I know are light-years beyond America’s stereotype of itself. We need to seriously start fighting back against that stereotype, and waking ourselves up to the wonderful diversity and complexity of the world around us.
And just so we’re clear, fuck CNN.