Last Updated:December 18 @ 05:09 pm

Shapiro: Is America Nasty and Homophobic?

By Ben Shapiro

On Monday, former Washington Wizards center Jason Collins revealed to the world that he is gay, prompting a complete media meltdown. Collins appeared on Good Morning America; he made the cover of Sports Illustrated; he became the lead on Huffington Post. The president of the United States congratulated him at a press conference, and the former president of the United States congratulated him via Twitter. So did the first lady, the commissioner of the National Basketball Association and a bevy of pundits and athletes across the spectrum.

Which leaves one question: What's the big deal?

Tennis star Martina Navratilova, the best player of her era, came out in 1981. Ellen Degeneres came out on national television in 1997. The president and CEO of the Golden State Warriors, Rick Welts, is openly gay. Top politicians, rock stars, athletes, movie and television stars and business moguls are gay. Gay Americans have been announcing their sexual orientation for decades. Why the hubbub?

The media announced that Collins was a hero because he had provided hope to millions of gay male teens. There is some credibility to that argument. But there is another, more powerful aftertaste from the media's champagne party for Collins: The bitter feeling that America is a nasty place, so nasty that we require overwhelming shows of support for people who just want to live their lives. When the media labels Collins another Jackie Robinson, that not only does massive injustice to Robinson, it implies that America of 2013 is to sexuality what America of 1947 was to race. That is not only ignorant. It is tremendously harmful.

The hubbub from the media assumes that America is a massively homophobic place -- a place where people like Collins must regularly fear for their lives, are forced not to participate in the private sexual activities they choose and face routine discrimination. There is certainly discrimination against gays in American society, but it is by far the exception rather than the rule. On average, gay couples earn significantly more money per year than straight couples do ($94,000 versus $86,000). Gay couples are more educated than straight couples (46 percent of gay couples have both gone to college, compared with less than one third of straight couples). Unemployment is lower among gays than straights. There is no law in any state in America that gays cannot live together or engage in consensual activity of any sort. There is no law in any state in America preventing contractual provisions for inheritance, hospital visitation and the like.

As far as violence against gays, while it is still sadly far-too-prevalent, it is nowhere near the epidemic the media suggests. Approximately 1,300 hate crimes based on "sexual orientation bias" were reported by the FBI in 2011.

There are approximately 9 million gays, lesbians and bisexuals in the United States, according to a UCLA study. That would mean that about one of every 7,100 LGBT people in the United States became a hate crime victim in 2011. That same year, there were some 935 Jewish victims of hate crimes according to the FBI. There are approximately 5.5 million Jews in the United States. That means that one out of every 5,900 Jews became a hate crime victim in 2011. Yet no one suggests that America remains a massively anti-Semitic country, requiring massive media coverage every time a Jewish person reaches a position of power or influence.

Jason Collins has every right to announce his sexual orientation. If announcing it makes him a happier person, more power to him. But the media's overwrought coverage of Collins demonstrates their deeply dangerous view that America is a disgusting place filled with budding Aaron McKinneys and Russell Hendersons looking for their Matthew Shepards to murder. The media's treatment of Collins as a full-fledged hero assumes that America is filled with full-fledged villains. It is not -- and the media coverage of Collins shows that. The media coverage also does young gays and lesbians a massive disservice. There is no surer way to keep young gays and lesbians living in fear than tacitly telling them that those who surround them despise them.

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Ben Shapiro, 29, is a graduate of UCLA and Harvard Law School, a radio host on KRLA 870 Los Angeles, and Editor-At-Large for Breitbart News. He is the New York Times bestselling author of "Bullies: How the Left's Culture of Fear and Intimidation Silences America." To find out more about Ben Shapiro and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate website at www.creators.com.

COPYRIGHT 2013 CREATORS.COM

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17 Comments

  1. Scruffy-USN-RetiredComment by kerryp
    May 1, 2013 @ 7:22 am

    This obama abomination and his media lap dogs are a disgrace to this nation. Where else in the world would a B-Ball player saying that he is a sexual pervert get a stamp of approval from the nations leader and make national news headlines?
    This immoral and destructive obama has done more economical and morality damage to this country than all of the enemies of the U.S.A. combined.
    My question is WHY is he still the president?

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    • tgimacbComment by tgimacb
      May 1, 2013 @ 2:19 pm

      The same leader who ‘came out’ with his proclamation a white officer “acted stupidly” toward a belligerent black resisting arrest, and same leader who double dog dares governments to cross a ‘red line’ then cowers with lame remarks through a lying spokesperson!
      But the point is this “But there is another, more powerful aftertaste from the media’s champagne party for Collins: The bitter feeling that America is a nasty place, so nasty that we require overwhelming shows of support for people who just want to live their lives”
      The LGBT agenda forced a culture to move left on THEIR particular platform at a most opportune period – meanwhile those of us with no skin in this game just don’t care.
      BTW this is not a success akin to a Jackie Robinson success.

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  2. smericleComment by smericle
    May 1, 2013 @ 8:20 am

    I must assume that Mr. Shapiro lives a very sheltered life rarely straying from the comforts of his protected home and office, to post a piece as blindly ignorant as this. As the comment above by kerryp so clearly illustrates, we do live in a world of nasty homophobics. Unfortunately for the GOP a majority of the homophobic’s in the U.S. seem to congregate in their party. Yet another reason myself and many others have finally decided to depart the party in the last decade.

    I am not a homosexual and live in an otherwise unremarkable rural community, homophobia abounds. I hear people on a regular basis refer to homosexuals as unGodly perversions of the human race, or some variation thereof. I have personal friends that actually still believe that homosexuality is a personal choice, or something that they can “suppress” in order to be “normal”. These are not extreme comments, these are comments that I hear in conversation on a regular basis. To “come out” is a dramatic choice for homosexuals, even in now. The choice to “come out” if you are a leader, athlete or in a powerful position is an extremely dangerous choice in this age. Mr. Shapiro needs to step out from his protective umbrella occasionally and get a feel for reality.

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    • Jota_Comment by Jota_
      May 1, 2013 @ 11:06 am

      You sound like a homophobia phobe, you seem to think they have a choice. Of course, they have to live in the shadows because you cannot accept them for who they are.

      Talk about a narrow view of the world!

      Don’t you just love logic!

      Why does being a homosexual mean they are the only one to get to use such arguments?

      Maybe, you needs to step out from your protective umbrella occasionally and get a feel for reality

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    • skopiiComment by skopii
      May 2, 2013 @ 12:42 pm

      From skopii: In response to smericle’s question “how do you reconcile that there are (homosexuals) in all species” There are no homosexuals in all species. I believe you are confusing animal lust behaviors with homosexuality. You don’t believe they are both the same? Do you?

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    • toby1944Comment by toby1944
      May 2, 2013 @ 4:25 pm

      If homosexuals want to be accepted for what they are and their beliefs, they really don’t need to “come out of the closet” publicly. I’m a heterosexual and I really don’t feel the need to broadcast it to anyone. What happens in the privacy of one’s home is no ones business but, the people that live there. As for displays of emotions in public, I think that sane individuals put a cap on it. If not out of respect for their partner, out of respect for the people around them.

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  3. cxComment by genesal
    May 1, 2013 @ 8:29 am

    Dang, you could be Obama’s mouthpiece or Planned Parenthood’s or Satan’s…….and yes, perversion is a rough way to live I suppose.

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  4. skopiiComment by skopii
    May 1, 2013 @ 10:02 am

    Homophobia is CORRECT. We should all be Homophobic for the following reasons. Nature, Natural Law and the Universal Code is male + female, all three, promote for the Positive Continuation of Humanity. The homosexual lifestyles are male/male or female/female; they can not and do not reproduce. Left unto themselves, homosexuals would cease to exist. Homosexuals, consciously or unconsciously harbor and embody a “Death Wish” for themselves and Humanity. They OPPOSE Nature, Natural Laws and the Universal Code. The homosexuals are a Negative Destructive influence to Humanity. They are Anti-Humanity. If homosexuals do not reproduce, and they aren’t born that way, where do they get converts? They corrupt the unsuspecting by parasitically engaging in the corrupt predation of troubled naive youth, who are in a confused state, due to age and a new hormone rush. These corrupted children are then stigmatized with guilt and shame over what has occurred and are further confused by lust or their own immature and confusing sexuality. Murders, rapists, swindlers, robbers and thieves and homosexuals are not beneficial to Humanity, they are Anti-Humanity. They are Negative Destructive Forces. As you realize it is a proper stance to be against murder or rape, so too should we realize that it is APPROPRIATE to be HOMOPHOBIC. These false ideas of coddling criminals or destructive forces is unproductive, destructive nonsense. There is less then 3% of the population that is homosexual. We are grossly, disproportionately, over-represented in our government by homosexual politicians, who are directly responsible, for our downward spiraling. Politicians, who aren’t able to distinguish Right from Wrong. Regardless of the lgbt phony, bogus propaganda LIE, that homosexuals are innocuous; nothing could be further from the TRUTH. Homosexuality is WRONG on many levels, and it is a negative, corrupting, destructive influence in society. Homosexuality is WRONG and it is CORRECT to be HOMOPHOBIC. Kindly remember to “Vote Incumbents Out!” Thank You.

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  5. theophilousComment by theophilous
    May 1, 2013 @ 11:16 am

    It is to be regretted that Mr. Collins has chosen to announce his sexual perversion. It represents a shameful choice on his part, and if you read and understand the bible, then you know that such choices will have eternal consequences for him, if he does not repent and change. I can point out several places in the bible that demonstrates that clearly. You may disagree with the justice of this, and in doing so you place your supposed wisdom above God’s, but you cannot state that the bible does not clearly define the consequences of those actions.

    That members of the media and government celebrate sexual perversion is astonishing, but sadly not surprising. Their mission in life seems to be summed up in Isaiah 5:20 “Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!” These actions, and others has caused the Lord God to withdraw his hand of protection from our land. We will see increased troubles and trials as a result. America will continue to be attacked, and will lose her place as a leader of nations.

    Homophobia is an irrational fear of homosexuality. In this case, as in in the accusation of Islamophobia, the accusation is false, in that such “fear” is not irrational. Homosexuality cause the more rapid and widespread epidemic of AIDS and HIV. It has cost millions of lives world wide and endangered everyone, through contamination of blood supply. More such diseases will follow. More homosexuals commit murder, and those murders are more violent, than their proportion of society would warrant. Homosexuals tend to die younger. Homosexuals are more prone to sexual abuse of children than are heterosexual as a portion of population. Recognition of these facts is not homophobia, any more than saying that germs cause disease.

    Let me state my position clearly. Sexual perversity is not, and should not be, a human right.

    You may claim that that is intolerant. Toleration is not simply the accepting of beliefs that you agree with. But allowing those whose beliefs you do not agree with the ability to speak. If you do not agree with me, and try to shut me up, then you are demonstrating your intolerance. I have not attempted to silence you, but I have exercised my right to disagree, without threat of any kind directed at you. Will you be able to do the same? Judging from the past, I doubt it very much.

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    • skopiiComment by skopii
      May 1, 2013 @ 12:26 pm

      Homophobia is a very RATIONAL distrust, of the destructive negative influence of homosexuals. Homosexuals OPPOSE the SANITY of the Universal Code, Natural Laws and Nature. Homosexuals want to supplant it with devious LIES, corruption, further govern-mental conspiratorial collaboration, and offer nothing; but an endless downward spiral to destruction. We should all become aware of the destruction of the homosexual behaviors and lifestyle. Homophobia is the CORRECT postulation for the NEGATIVE, CHOSEN SELF DESTRUCTIVE homosexual behavior/lifestyle. What is SANE, about coddling criminals or the immoral? Kindly remember to “Vote Incumbents Out!” Thank You.

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    • smericleComment by smericle
      May 2, 2013 @ 10:22 am

      skopii, I like the reference to “natural laws” but here is my question: how do you reconcile the fact that there are homosexuals in virtually all social species in God’s kingdom? I’ve tried to reconcile this, to no avail. I’ve read a many thesis papers that make a strong case that homosexual strains within social species strengthen the tribes, clans or societies, but providing non-reproducing males and females to bear extra societal burdens (tending fields, watching children, preparing food, protecting the village, etc) all without the burden of needing to bear or care for their own children.

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    • Jota_Comment by Jota_
      May 2, 2013 @ 10:50 am

      “how do you reconcile the fact that there are homosexuals in virtually all social species in God’s kingdom” – smericle

      The first thing is to examine one’s assumptions

      And the firs assumption being made is there is some precise definition of what is and what is not homosexual

      Where exactly does one draw the line and how wide is the line to define homosexual from heterosexual?

      What we do know is there are X Y chromosomes which determine gender. Chromosomes consist of a multitude of genes

      Yet, there are individuals who claim to be one gender despite their genetic make up. Which argues strongly that genes themselves are not the force which solely determines behavior.

      And we know from Pavlov’s dog behavior can be modified

      But as long as we do not examine our assumptions we will get the conclusion we assumed, which is circular reasoning, a logical fallacy.

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  6. nhpollackComment by nhpollack
    May 1, 2013 @ 11:37 am

    Preferring to have sex with men makes him a hero? Look up “vagina dentata” and see who the true heroes are.

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    • smericleComment by smericle
      May 2, 2013 @ 10:14 am

      !’m sure you meant that in jest, don’t laugh, churches in the South still teach vaginal dentata.

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  7. middlegroundComment by middleground
    May 1, 2013 @ 12:08 pm

    Where do we draw the limits on sexual behavior?

    The courts say same sex affairs between consulting adults are acceptable, but if one party is underage it is not acceptable. The fine for Penn State not reporting a pedophile was 60 million, yet the BSA is being criticized for not accepting gay scoutmasters. But where do you imagine pedophiles congregate? They congregate where there are young men and women of impressionable age who are just beginning to have active hormones, namely, church youth groups, coaching, junior high teachers and youth groups like the Boy Scouts. In my early days as a boy scout, every boy knew to not be alone with the scoutmaster. Should he have been reported? Perhaps, but boys between 12 and 16 have very active imaginations as well as active hormones and any deviation from “manly behavior” would probably be reported as identifying a person as a pedophile. Women from 12 to 16 are far more sophisticated about what constitutes a sexual advance than boys of that age and I suspect that makes them far less vulnerable, but where is the hard data? If being subjected to the attentions of a pedophile permanently alters the sexual orientation of a youth, why not say so and warn youth? The Catholic Church has paid out millions in fines for not removing priests for illegal activities involving young boys, but our society still looks the other way and calls it homophobia if it involves boys, but rape if it involves girls. Both are illegal, but viewed differently.

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  8. smericleComment by smericle
    May 2, 2013 @ 6:56 am

    Well, I’d say my point was pretty well made here!

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