While riding today, I noticed a couple of young ladies, both wearing white outfits characterized by very short shorts and slim fitting tops, displaying their shoulders and back. They were crossing Getwell Ave. at it’s intersection at Quince Road. Neither of the young women were older than 15 years I deduced. Not far down the street, a couple of men had made the young women the focus of their attention as they completely turned their heads while leaving a local BBQ shack and crossing the streets themselves. When the young women recognized they would have to pass the two men, they crossed back onto the side they’d just departed from, giggling to themselves.
This scene troubled me as it served as a microcosm to what has been ailing me for the past few sunsets. Our culture of sex, one of immediate all encompassing gratification and blatant physical, verbal, and thus mental expression, has begun to subjugate our better selves. This control is becoming more evident in virtually every facet of American life. An increasingly larger number of Americans are rebelling against globally accepted social norms to adopt a more ‘liberal’ agenda of inclusion and limitlessness. Everyone from your so-called thug to your young under esteemed middle school girl to your graduate yuppie and self anointed intellect and family representative has subscribed to the idea of ‘people can’t help who they love’ in some form or another. Because of our über sexual nature, this physical desire is often confused for love and it is often exhibited through lustful self-indulgence.
The nation’s current state of confusion as it relates to how we will accept and handle homosexuality provides a lot of insight into this modern american phenomenon. Recently a bill was passed in New York, our third most populous state, allowing for same sex marriage. I have not seen to edict, but I assume that in order to do so the definition for the institution of marriage must have changed in order for this to be allowed. For as long as America has been a sovereign country, marriage has been defined and accepted as ‘a union between man and woman’. This clearly had to have changed.
In the great state of New York, men can now marry men and women can marry themselves as well. This will undoubtedly lead to more open homosexual and bisexual relationships for all to see and experience; But why? Some say it is because of the need to recognize what has been happening since the beginning of humanity, others say it is the natural evolution of humankind, while others will argue that the United States Constitution allows for the ‘pursuit of happiness’ for all citizens of this ‘great’ nation. I contend that we have allowed our primal desires to overrule our better judgement once again.
As a nation, we are going to have to decide who we are and what we will look like. We have been operating under the guise of the world’s ‘melting pot,’ but one year in America as a minority of any sort will dissipate those expectations. We are a nation of various groups and cultures bound together by our spirit of independence and personal freedom. Our fear of being repressive prevents us from adhering to strict sets of beliefs while our mandate to be tolerant strips one of their own standards enforced through childhood and familial traditions. We have to include. To not do so paints an individual as a hate monger or fear peddler, or even simply an imbecile. We have been bred to group think our issues, and while we seem to know this is not bringing us any closer, it does alleviate the burden of accountability and for many that is sufficient.
This current sexual identity crisis is stemmed in mass confusion and has been propagated with masterful execution. No matter what time of the day or night you turn on your television or radio you will find an ad or scene which is sexual in nature. It is how we sell virtually all of our music, and it is a part of every magazine on the shelf. It starts at toddlerhood as we are introduced to non gender specific creations or men who speak in tones much more like our mothers than our fathers. Our culture is currently so sexually charged and critically undisciplined that we are willing to stimulate our private parts with just about anything. We are having sex in open markets, with those of the same sex, as well as with other species of animal. Slowly, the restrictions which helped us define our humanity are being blurred and we become less human and more animalistic. We have lost our willingness to reason and logically define our needs and desires and in place we have decided that we are no more in control of these urges than baby is of its bladder. Somehow though, we tend to think that those who have sexual perversions or variances other that our own should be in complete control of theirs or we should be in control of them.
Many frown on a comparison between pedophilia and homosexuality or bestiality and homosexuality. I do not think they are vastly different. If you look at statistics, you will find that the vast majority of ‘sexual predators,’ or those who have sexual relationships with minors, are repeat offenders. Once arrested, convicted and punished, they eventually find themselves at a familiar crossroads questioning their love or lust for such a forbidden fruit. Many times they succumb to their need for satiation. Much like what I envision an telepathic encounter between two men must be as they make their final decisions to ravage one another.
America: I am not here to castigate anyone for their choice of lifestyle. I am simply asking pointed questions which I believe should be answered and understood before we go further into a room with no lights, walls, railings, or exits. As adults, we have a responsibility to the youth who look to us for answers to their many questions of life. We need to take on more accountability in how we respond. Let’s look deeply at how confusing it is for a child to understand the basic foundations of life when a man is dressed like and desires to be treated like a woman in the open forum. We all have sexual fantasies of some sort, but responsible individuals understand that those things are to be held closely and only acted out in private. Openly excessive displays of hetero-, homo- or bi-sexual lusts should be frown upon. Our children are being exposed to spirits far to complex for them to fully understand and because of the poor rate of full parental involvement, these spirits re-present themselves through the subconscious mind if firmer bases of reality and perspective are not held. We need to define who and what we are, and stop being so quick to change that for the sake of tranquility. Men are required in such times as these, and what we seem to have not taken notice of is the erosion of masculinity throughout our culture. The truth to the matter is the sexuality is something which varies from culture to culture and morphs throughout the time-space continuum. At some point or another virtually everything has been accepted and rejected. We are not inventing the wheel here. What it seems however is that much like the pre-teen, America; still in its immature stages of growth, is experiencing an identity crisis. Who we are, what we want, how we get it, and through which means are all still being developed as this nation shifts in influence between the majority and its many minorities. We must be careful though, the rest of the world is watching. Openly flaunting or displaying weakness is luxury we do not have.
-Mustafa A. Shakur