climb every mountain

Watching the Golden Globes award show last night reminded me that as a gay man I’m still not accepted by society, still a minority, and still have a long way to go before I can get through one day without being provoked and angry by some moron or another. Yes, that’s you I’m referring to, Dennis Quaid.

In spite of the fact that queer-themed films were honored last night, the entertainment industry (Golden Globes, and whoever produced the ceremony) felt it necessary to temper the show with a few gay jokes here and there, most notably delivered by the cast of Will & Grace, in a sort of nudge-nudge wink-wink manner to households all over the nation, as if to say, “We may be giving them awards, but don’t worry, we’re not taking this any more seriously than you are at home. And, by the way, we’re all straight, so sit back, enjoy the show, and please buy some L’Oreal products.”

Each of the movies up for the Best Picture award was presented peridically through the night in an almost reverential and respectful way, that is until it was Brokeback Mountain’s turn. I have no idea why Dennis Quaid was chosen to acknowledge that Brokeback Mountain was nominated for the Best Picture Golden Globe, and it seemed as though he had no idea either, given his “aw-shucks, I’m not gay” delivery, not to mention the off-color and irreverernt chick-flick/dick-flick “joke.” I say “joke” in quotations, because I still don’t get it. If I don’t get it, it’s not a joke. Then again, his comments were directed to the straight viewers and not me, so I guess it doesn’t matter whether or not I understood what he was trying to say.

What does matter is that I get it now. It doesn’t matter whether or not the entertainment industry represnts me or anything close to my life. It’s up to me to make that happen, to make my voice heard, and to let people know that I’m just as good as they are. No, the irony that this award show was broadcast on Martin Luther King Day was not lost on me.

However, Felicity Huffman moved me when she accepted her award for her portrayal of a man about to undergo a sex-change operation in Trans-America, and said, “I know as actors our job is usually to shed our skins, but I think as people our job is to become who we really are, and so I would like to salute the men and women who brave ostracism, alienation and a life lived on the margins to become who they really are.”

I think it was incredibly brave of her to say that.

About timothyjlambert

Timothy J. Lambert is allegedly a writer.
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18 Responses to climb every mountain

  1. brentsbrain says:

    Pretty much sums up my feelings exactly.

  2. rio3001 says:

    you get the award for most on point post regarding an award show.

    bravo!

  3. Anonymous says:

    I don’t know about bravery, but it seems very appropriate given that Hollywood is distanced so much from the realities and horrors of trans’ peoples lives.

    JR

  4. Okay, well you have to enlighten me on this. I seriously looked at the awards as a baby step for most of the population. Granted, it’s not nearly far enough of a step that is needed by the states, but I do think it’s better than it was. I keep hoping that with more literature and more movies about homosexuality or WITH homosexuality as a part of everyday life in the movies and literature, people might wake the hell up and see that people should “become who [they] really are, and so [we can]…salute the men and women who brave ostracism, alienation and a life lived on the margins to become who they really are.”
    I know it was downplayed, and jokes were made, and I agree it’s awful that to cover the nervousness of it all they do this, but at least it’s being talked about. At least there is effort being made for equality. I wish it was faster–I wish we didn’t have to hear the jokes about it all. One thing that is so important here is that the general public is ignorant and scared of change. And it’s happening whether they like it or not. For all the protests, for all the legislation, change is happening. I feel sad that my gay friends were offended to some degree by the awards. I can’t even emphathize with them on that level. All I can do is continue to fight for equality, and continue to teach people the realities of change, and I hope for this to occur at a faster rate by the production of more movies like Brokeback and TransAmerica, and more literature like yours on the shelves with more “queer” lit taught in colleges. More needs to be done. More needs to be said, but for all we can do, it’s going to be a backbreaking baby step that actually occurs. One day, I hope that the difference between people won’t be seperated by titles or labels, but I feel that is a long time coming yet.
    *This is my opinion about it, and I could be wrong. :)

    • With regard to the Golden Globes telecast, I look at it like this: what if you substituted everything they said about glbt people with black people? Or women? What if they referred to Memoirs of a Geisha as a controversial movie and then made a joke about Japanese people? There would be public outrage of some sort.

      But, no. Not us gays. Apparently as long as you pander to us, give us an award, you can kick us down, given that GLAAD, our media watch dog group, said nothing about the fag jokes that were made.

      I know I’m preaching to the choir where you’re concerned. You obviously get it. And you’re right, it will take baby steps. But it will also take more GLBT individuals standing up for themselves and realizing that we’re only being pandered to in most cases. More needs to be done. The state of Maine only JUST added gay people to the state’s anti-discrimination laws. But that doesn’t automatically stop discrimination from happening. Gay people are still being assaulted all over the country on the basis of who they are, who they love, and the police and government still won’t prosecute these instances as a hate crime.

      We are not accepted yet. And you’re right, it’s going to take baby steps. But it’s hard to walk when so many are content to, or are convinced it’s okay to crawl.

      • Oh yes, absolutely! I do what ever I can, and I am not GLBT. I go to my Pride; I educate. I join my groups. We need someone like Martin Luther for teh black people but for gays. We need someone who will lead people in the right direction. Ellen isn’t that person, sad to say. Neither is Rosie O’Donnell. We need someone, not a sterio type, to break through and get people’s attention. Until we have a prolific leader, there isn’t anyone to follow.

  5. smoness says:

    Now I have Julie Andrews singing “Climb Every Mountain” stuck in my head. Bastard.

    • Anonymous says:

      Quaid’s comments at the GG Awards

      Was it Dennis Quaid or Randy Quaid? I went to be so got the news secondhand. Anyhow, to be fair to him, those blurbs they read before they “present” a scene from a nominated film are written for them and, more often than not, the jokes (whether controversial or tame) merely fall flat.

      blake fraina (author of KING OF CATS)

      • Re: Quaid’s comments at the GG Awards

        It was Dennis Quaid. Randy Quaid was there, nominated for…something. I don’t remember. But it was Dennis Quaid who presented Brokeback Mountain as a contender for Best Picture.

        I know what they say when presenting is scripted and read from a TelePrompTer, but sometimes the presenters ad-lib. I don’t know if his “joke” was ad-libbed or not, but either way, it’s insensitivity all around, both on the part of the award show’s producers and the person who accepts responsibility of reading the material. Whether he was gung-ho to read the “fag joke” to a world-wide audience or made it up on the spot, either way, Dennis Quaid’s a big jerk in my opinion.

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