gay bashing and class

Charles Brown CharlesB at
Wed Oct 21 10:33:12 PDT 1998

In general , the rightwing is much more violent than the left. The notion that terrorism tends to be a left tactic is a bourgeois myth, especially relative to the right wing activities. From John Wilkes Booth to the Oklahoma Building Bomber, from abortion clinic bombers to murders of gays and Henry Ford's old thugs or Pinkerton's police.

In this, the left truly reflects the working class, which is not entirely undeserving of its image as more peaceloving than the bourgeoisie and petit bourgeoisie.

Even the big city insurrections have been directed more against property than people. Most of the deaths are usually caused by the police.

It would not be surprising if there is a false stereotype that the working class tends to be more prejudice and violent against gays than petit bourgeoisie and other bourgeois influenced strata. This would be like the false stereotype of Archie Bunker as more bigotted than Rockefeller.

Charles Brown


>>> Doug Henwood <dhenwood at> 10/21 12:24 PM >>>
jf noonan wrote:

>Yeah, that's the narrative of those sons of privilege that did the
>last marquee ready gay-bashing in Houston, referred to above.

In today's NYT, Michael Cooper writes:

<quote> Jack Levin, a professor of sociology and criminology at Northeastern University and an author of "Hate Crimes: The Rising Tide of Bigotry and Bloodshed" (Plenum Press, 1993), said it was not unusual for anti-gay crimes to buck the trends of other bias crimes.

"Most hate crimes respond to economic factors like the unemployment rate, but not gay-bashing," he said. "Gay-bashing has nothing to do with money, with economic survival. That's why so many perpetrators are teen-agers and come from every point among the economic continuum. It is typically done by young people, with their hormones raging, feeling confusion about sexual identity.

Young guys in denial about their own homosexual feelings who see the very presence of a gay person as a threat." </quote>

By the way, I talked yesterday with someone who studies the sociology of the right who said that the Christian right is populated mainly by households with median and above incomes (most in the $35-70k range).

So this argues against gaybashing as a lumpen habit.


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