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Interesting article on how the culture is slowly, but not absolutely, is changing in attitudes toward sexual behavior.


Real Men Aren’t Afraid to Suck Straws

Posted by Dan Savage on November 9 at 15:13 PM

Or, it seems increasingly, cock.

A study released by a sex researcher in the UK is garnering a lot of sexy headlines—like this one:

One Third of US High School Football Players Have Had Sex with Men

Sociologist Dr. Eric Anderson, studying American men who had played football in high school, said that out of 47 men surveyed, 19 had participated in sexual conduct with others of their gender.

Sexual contact was defined to mean behavior specifically meant to sexually excite others, and ranged from kissing to oral sex. The behavior also ranged from threesomes with one woman and two men present, to encounters involving only two men.

Mmm… football.

Anderson’s sample was small—just 47 straight guys, 19 of whom cheerfully admitted to having messed around with another dude—and all the men had moved from being high school football players to college football cheerleaders. Says Anderson on Salon today…

“I’m not trying to say that these men are gay in any way, shape or form,” Anderson says. “That isn’t the point of this. The point is to simply make the point that homophobia is reducing at an unbelievably rapid rate, and this is one of the multiple benefits that come with that…

“I wanted to see what would happen when you take men who used to be football players and you put them in a field with the people they used to make fun of, the cheerleaders. And what I found was that they very quickly undo their homophobia, if they had homophobia. They very quickly change their views about women. And one of the things they do, they very quickly undo the ‘one-drop rule’ of sexuality.”

For the last few decades—ever since gay people started coming out and living openly—the “one-drop rule” has been in force. Any man that messed around with another man, even just once, had to be a fag. Period. But women were able to admit to one or two same-sex crushes and a handful of few same-sex experiences—hell, relationships (LUGs?)—without everyone insisting that they had to be closeted lesbians. And increasingly straight men—real straight men, not messed up closet cases—are insisting that they too can have the odd same-sex experience without being gay.

Not that there’s anything wrong with being gay. But just as not everyone that has straight sex is straight—I had straight sex, for crying out loud—not everyone that has gay sex is gay.

Back to Anderson:

“When we were in high school, you kissed another man, you were a fag, fag, fag, and that was that. You’d get the crap kicked out of you. That is not the case at all anymore.”

Anderson says studies since the ’50s have shown that men have had sex with each other without identifying as gay. “The primary difference here is that in their peer culture, these behaviors aren’t stigmatized anymore, or are considerably less stigmatized,” he says. “The key here is that it doesn’t threaten their heterosexual identity in the peer culture anymore. They can do this now—which really isn’t anything new—but the difference is their teammates don’t go, ‘Oh, you fucking faggot.’”

Judging from my “Savage Love” mail I’d say there are a lot of folks out there that would go, “Oh, you fucking faggot.” The one drop-rule has weakened, it hasn’t been repealed. Every day brings a letter from someone utterly convinced that a straight-identified husband, boyfriend, drinking buddy, etc., who admitted to a same-sex experience simply must be a closeted fag. But I also get letters every day from straight guys who, like Anderson’s football players, cheerfully admit to a same-sex experience or crush and don’t think of themselves as gay and the least bit conflicted about it.

Seeing as we’re moving into a brave new world when straight men can suck dick once or twice in their lives without having to hang a rainbow windsock on their decks (who do you think is booking all those shemale escorts anyway?), hopefully we won’t be seeing many more “news reports” like this one. WCVB in Boston has a list of “10 Drinks a Man Should Never Order.” Because, you know, today you can suck dick without all your friends thinking you’re a fag—but, dude, order a blended drink, or one with too much garnish, or a Jello shot or a cosmo and everyone’s going think you’re a total homo.

My favorite drinking “don’t” for insecure straight men:

Anything that requires a straw. It’s hard to look coy with a straw, it’s nearly impossible to look macho or hot when using one.

Yeah, everyone is going to think you’re gay if you put that straw in your mouth. But sucking your teammate’s cock during a boy-girl-boy threesome? Nothing gay about that, dude. Party on.

So most of us core guys don't have to label ourselves anything do we! While this study sure requires further expansion and research, the direction that attitudes are taking is pretty clear.. and perhaps a little less anxious, for everybody involved.