Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Goodbye Matt Damon fandom

There was a troublingly homophobic snippet of Matt Damon's interview in GQ where he talks about the cars he and Ben were thinking about buying after getting the money for Good Will Hunting.

Damon says, "Because we knew it would be so gay to get the same car [Jeep Grand Cherokee]. And our friends where making fun of us. Like, 'You fags, what are you doing, you're gonna drive around in the same car? Are they gonna say His and His on them?' We both wanted hunter green. So eventually we decided that one had to get black and one had to get green."

Some straight guys and even some gays might say that this is completely normal thing for him to say. But there are clearly negative implications to being viewed as gay here being put out by a mainstream actor. And I think his acquiescing to generalized homophobia is bad as well as highlighting it in a major interview. He even sneaks in the gay slur!! What an asshole!

What would have been much better? Something like: Well, so what if people thought we were gay? We bought the same car anyway. Of course, that would be lying, so, what to do then, would be to not mention this incident at all.

Homophobia is insidious. Something which looks normal and understandable -- oh, I would never want anyone to believe I am gay because it is such a bad thing -- is really degradation, insult, and hate. People are so used to speaking in these terms and automatically thinking it's acceptable. Sure, it's like second nature '80s playground language -- but used by a celebrity in a mainstream magazine.

If I were to restate in racially charged terms, it's like Matt saying: "Ben and I were thinking of buying Cadillacs. My friends were saying: so what are you n*gg*rs now? We *obviously* had to *not* buy Cadillacs because people would think we're a couple of f*cking negros."

Anyway, I'm much less of a Matt fan than I used to be, and now, I think perhaps an end is in order.

No comments: