Dr. Jillian T. Weiss

Comment of the Week: Jesse Monteagudo on Top 20 Queer Things

Filed By Dr. Jillian T. Weiss | September 11, 2011 7:00 PM | comments

Filed in: Gay Icons and History, Living
Tags: gay role models, LGBT history, Top 20 list

Comment of the WeekOn Guest Blogger Jeremy Redlien's post, Top 20 Things That Owe Their Existence To Queers, an awesome list of the accomplishments of queer (or likely queer) individuals that had a positive or significant impact on human history, Projector Jesse Monteagudo comments:

"That's quite a record: the sexual revolution, Keynesian economics, the United Nations, the Napoleonic Code, feminism, modern science, philosophy . . . You just gave Tea Party extremists more reasons to hate us. (They oppose all those things.)

Though an all-inclusive list would be impossible in No. 6 - Art, I regret that Walt Whitman was left out of that short list. (He also deserves honorable mention in No. 1 - Democracy.) I also notice that Voltaire was left out of 4. - Philosophy. Is Voltaire's queerness in doubt, or is it his status as a philosopher?"

Jeremy's reply was interesting as well:

"What about U.S. Constitution, Democracy, and Christianity? Do the Tea Party hate those things as well? :)

As for Walt Whitman and Voltaire, that was not an intentional oversight, outside of the fact that I was consciously trying to avoid making this a list of 20 Greatest Things Brought to You By White Dudes Who Also Happened to Be Gay.

I will consider adding them though now, since they were brought up.

Thank you for the feedback."

What say you, Projectors? Are we not the most amazing community? We created the ideas that are the basis for the Tea Party, and that's why the Tea Party hates us. Isn't life full of the most delicious contradictions? Calling Dr. Frankenstein.

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I think the tea party is a study in contradictions. I was initially intrigued by them until every letter to the editor of the local paper by a member of the Tea Party was about how badly misrepresented they were by the "lame stream" media. This kind of complaining got old really fast. I have yet to see a single letter from someone claiming to be tea party member or representing them, that actually offers up reasonable solutions to our current problems.

As for their contradictory nature, they claim to want government fiscal responsibility but are unwilling to take a stand against U.S. led foreign wars or consider cuts to our bloated military budget. They claim to support the constitution but demonstrate a huge ignorance as to what it actually says or the powers it grants the government. I could go on, but it's not worth it.

In an attempt to answer Jeese's question regarding Voltaire:

"Once a philosopher -- twice a sodomite!"

Allusions to this quote by Voltaire are all over the Internet, far more than I could check out. Unless Voltaire was a pathological hypocrite, I have doubts about categorizing him as ore-dominantly homosexual. Bisexual? Who knows.

The quote may be apocryphal. But if true, it carries the unmistakeable implication that there is something disreputable about being a "sodomite" and that Voltaire was mildly homophobic. OTOH, I found this:

"In his correspondence with Voltaire, Frederick [the Great] early on evinced a great interest in what we would today call gay culture. In an astonishingly open fashion, this interest was encouraged by Voltaire."

So even if Voltaire had a disparaging attitude toward same-sex coupling, he was at least enough of a philosopher to see that homosexual behavior is a part of human history and deserves to be objectively documented.

Typo, 3rd paragraph: "ore-dominantly" should be "pre-dominantly".

As for the Tea Party, I have long believed the old saying, "If someone is going to the trouble of attacking you, you must be doing something right."

It also means your message is getting out to people.

So, we must be doing something right -- we are pissing off exactly the people that we want to piss off, namely those totally brainwashed by homophobia.