Thursday, July 01, 2010

Jews, Gays, and History

Defending Andrew Sullivan's use of the term "final solution" to describe experiments aiming to prevent homosexuality by tampering with hormones in utero, Goldblog free-associates a further link between that  pair of strange, pardon the expression, bedfellows, both victims of Nazi hate:

I've come to the conclusion that some people are gay because God specifically wanted them be to gay. Don't ask me how I came to this; don't ask me to explain my thinking (yet) and don't ask me to explain what I think to be God's purpose is in this case. I can't quite figure out God's reason for creating Jews, much less gays.

Maybe Richard Florida can help; he's suggested that gays are an essential element in "the creative class: a fast-growing, highly educated, and well-paid segment of the workforce on whose efforts corporate profits and economic growth increasingly depend."  Sound familiar?  Jews are another reviled out-group that have catalyzed economic and cultural development in the city.  As medieval kings and dukes periodically courted Jews, Florida has suggested various means by which ambitious city fathers and employers should -- and perhaps semi-consciously, in some cases, have --  provided amenities that attract "creative class" types, who are disproportionately gay.

For the theologically minded, is it such a leap to suggest that God created Jews and gays to prick forward human progress?  And for those more inclined toward amorphous rationalist mystery, that cracker-barrel philosopher Kurt Vonnegut, in Slaughterhouse Five, gropes in a congruent vein toward the unseen dynamics of human sexual-social life:

One of the biggest moral bombshells handed to Billy by the Tralfamadorians, incidentally, had to do with sex on Earth. They said their flying-saucer crews had identified no fewer than seven sexes on Earth, each essential to reproduction. Again: Billy couldn't possible imagine what five of those seven sexes had to do with the making of a baby, since they were sexually active only in the fourth dimension.

The Tralfamadorians tried to give Billy clues that would help him imagine sex in the invisible dimension. They told him that there could be no Earthling babies without male homosexuals. There could be babies without female homosexuals. There couldn't be babies without women over sixty-five years old. There could be babies without men over sixty-five. There couldn't be babies without other babies who had lived an hour or less after birth. And so on.

It was gibberish to Billy (p. 114, Dell edition).
 Perhaps we can credit Florida with some 4-dimensional thinking:

There is no one-size-fits-all model for a successful people climate. The members of the creative class are diverse across the dimensions of age, ethnicity and race, marital status, and sexual preference. An effective people climate needs to emphasize openness and diversity, and to help reinforce low barriers to entry. Thus, it cannot be restrictive or monolithic. 
 Go for it, Goldblog. Gay and straight created he them....

No comments:

Post a Comment