Originally Posted by River
An example comes to mind. I went to embrace my hetero- friend, Sean. It just happens that I did so while I was laying in bed (and he standing next to the bed). It freaked him out and he backed away. Yet, had this occurred away from the bed it would not have represented a problem. He'd have freely shared that embrace. Somehow, in that moment, he mistook my philia for eros of the sexual desire sort.
Yea River - this type of thing cuts deep to the heart doesn't it.
He didn't "misread" - he hit his own fear point. His homophobia. He would have hit it regardless of the manner you expressed a warm hug of friendship.
I was watching a panel on PBS last night delving into some of the homo awareness shifts. Although it started triggered by the current debate about the abolishment of the "don't ask - don't tell "policy of the military regarding homosexuality, it soon broadened out ( a rep was there from Pew Research) to general views of the american public regarding homosexuality.
The results of polling were very disappointing to me and maybe shocking. In general the research seemed to show that although a majority of people are making significant headway in believing about "rights" issues (discrimination etc) that down deep, the belief systems regarding "morality" and right/wrong of homosexuality have changed little if any.
So although the general public may be willing to stretch and accept you have certain "rights" - at a deeper level homosexuality is still "condemned". So any true "acceptance" appears to be still far away and as one panelist pointed out, without change at that fundamental level, backslides are likely to occur on other fronts.