“You’re Gay!” Insults: Kevin Samuels and Dr. T. Hasan Johnson
I admit having trouble titling this, as the Kevin Samuels title honestly makes me laugh, and he knows what he is doing, because people have been joking about this for a while. I am not familiar with Dr. T. Hasan Johnson, Ph.D., an Associate Professor of Africana Studies, but he has an incredible resume and credentials. Before finishing this, because I only got an hour into it a few days ago, at times, I am wary of other Black scholars, or ideologues, that propagate homophobic conspiratorial notions and outlooks like the “Gay Agenda,” because I have to hear similar nonsense from fragile ethnonationalists, Catholic Traditionalists, redpillers, and fitness coaches still in current year complaining about soy products and liberal men with their lattes.
If I am understanding T. Hasan Johnson correctly, he is not like that, but he is concerned with the history and roots of racial sexism against Black males, and the “cumulative assertions of Black male inferiority.” There are some Black men, that are under a terrible impression, that queer and non-heteronormative Black men have life easier, and that the society dominated by White people portray gay Black men as the only acceptable way to be, i.e., the idea that homosexuality is largely being socially-engineered.
T. Hasan Johnson argues, this is not true in the sense they put it. Black men in media are not often depicted as say, Denzel Washington, or John David Washington (in Tenet) as capable, professional, intelligent and dignified men. Black men are often hypersexualized and sexually objectified, he states, in reference to our penises like “walking phalluses.”
In addition to this, this takes on the form of transphilia and homophilia, when representing hypermasculine Black males in media in an exaggerated manner, then demeaning Black males stereotypically through a flamboyant, hyperfeminine (or gay) image. However, there are those Black men, that interpret this differently from T. Hasan Johnson in a transphobic, biphobic and homophobic way. The framework he is working from is inclusive, as whether Black and straight, or gay, no dignity is given to either. Also, Black males are never granted as much as the women, any other identity except gay, or straight.
It is not just Black women, but many women reinforce this rigidity of masculinity, because men perform and act in accordance to what he thinks and believes, or sees what women want, desire and like. I observed this in other boys growing up as well, and I often tried to mimic them, and what was seen in media. There are certain men, that victimize themselves, and make up things, such as saying modern women want “feminine men,” and aren’t picking them (these men are forcing their performance of masculinity) which is the complete opposite of the situation and the statistics.
I also would not entirely agree with any perspective, that argues Black mothers (specifically, ‘single mothers’) are making black boys gay and effeminate. This is something, even my father suggested once, that my mother giving me teddy bears as a kid would make me gay. As a child, I felt like a sensitive, and always had night terrors or sensed things surrounding me, which is why as a child I surrounded myself with teddy bears, like many other kids while I slept.
He also nearly attacked me once when younger, as he assumed I might be gay, and at the time, he definitely did not understand, nor have a positive notion about LGBTQ. There are many problems with such views, but men with these views, it would go to reason, that they’d believe they ought to be super rigid in their method of parenting. Such fathers are also likely to believe, that they failed as a parent, if their child does not turn out to be “straight.” That is not the way to promote the importance of men in any household. My father never beat me, nor was rigid at all, but on the contrary he protected me from domestic abuse to my mother and I.
So, I always saw him in that light, though I admit my parents do not have positive views about LGBTQ, and I really don’t care about changing them.
However, this is not what Kevin Samuels and the professor is talking about at all, though you cannot prevent men in every comment section with expressing such opinion. Kevin Samuels is not only rightfully defending against attacks on his masculinity, he has Dr. T. Hasan Johnson to help explain to us, why are there 40 year old men so immaturely calling other men gay and hyper-observing their mannerisms. He also explains how detrimental, toxic and divisive this is for Black men, and how the mistreatment is rooted in slavery.
These are directions these kind of dialogues typically take, when older Black men who could be middle-aged or older who should know better, that engage and hate on other Black men. In this case with T. Hasan Johnson and Kevin Samuels, they’re explaining an issue that relates to me, and I will explain after this in a separate post.