I think some people use derogatory remarks (like the f-word for homosexual men or the n-word for African Americans, etc.) because they want to just shove them away into a nice little category. They generalize so they don't have to get to know them as real people. It's an excuse, and one that I am sick of. "Oh, she's a lesbian... and therefore, she has nothing to offer to my life." It's tragic. It's another barrier that keeps us from knowing someone.
And it seems odd to me that racism is an accepted "bad thing" but homophobia is not. Neither is controllable.
I am starting to believe that it's getting cooler and cooler to be stupid (or simply just not intelligent) and ignorant. When students come into class, the one who has the work done & knows what's going on in class is looked at like the know-it-all (and not in a positive way) when, really, that should be the norm - to know what's going on. And the reason I say it's cool to be ignorant is because when I hear racist jokes, and I freak out, everyone gets all uncomfortable that "the liberal is speaking her mind." Well, DEAL. I don't care that I make people uncomfortable; they have made me feel that way with their stupid & ignorant joke. It would be much "cooler" of me to go with the flow and laugh at the ignorant joke.
How is racism and homophobia going to stop?
And other -isms for that matter?