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Tom Toles
Posted at 07:15 AM ET, 03/29/2013

Friday rant: Wooly Bully edition

 People desperately want to bully. And do it all the time. Every once in a while a principal, or principle, will show up and tug on our ear and we’re forced to stop, at least a little. We’re not going to bully gays anymore, it looks like.

 Bullying is not just the red-faced mean kid at recess. It’s the primitive residue of social cohesion behavior from a time when Act First and Think Later proved sufficient to keep the tribe functioning, and also didn’t actually include the Think Later part. Gays were a great target. Limited in number and manifesting an orientation that didn’t fit with customary norms, well, What Do They EXPECT? Ridicule, at the very least. Brutal persecution was more like it. And when persecution drove gays into hiding, well, that just made it all so much easier. Social norms, unchallenged, were all the justification needed. It’s The Way Things Are Meant To Be!

 The decision of gays to stop hiding and confront the abuse made all the difference. Standing up to a bully (sometimes) works, even when the bully is, um, everybody. The anti-gay “position” collapsed, because it was never based on any “ideas,” because it never needed any ideas. Bullying had always been sufficient. When finally put in a position to explain this particular prejudice, people have either changed their minds or embarrassed themselves by making ridiculous assertions. We are witnessing a great step forward in human history. Just be aware that the bullying tendency may just wander off to find a different target.

By  |  07:15 AM ET, 03/29/2013

 
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