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  1. #1
    Execuvette Rolyo85's Avatar
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    "Yes, Nate Silver, You Are a Gay Statistician"

    So, I found this awesome article on Huffpost:

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/guy-br...ref=gay-voices

    I had no clue Silver was gay. He's got a nice, interchangeably Jewish name, which, in the context of politics and journalism, just seemed normal. Therefore, I assumed he was "normal" for that job in most other ways: mid-50s, white, heterosexual.

    But he's not. He's 34 and gay, which is awesome. The "Out 100" has, for most of its history, been dominated by performers (most of whom came out well into their careers) and activists working to promote gay rights -- professional gays or folks in gay professons. So now, at long last, we have a dude who's doing something unrelated to homosexuality who killed it this year. Good for us, no?

    Well, no, actually. "To my friends, I'm kind of sexually gay but ethnically straight," Silver says in the Out feature. He is also said to consider "gay conformity as perfidious as straight conformity."

    [snip]

    So why the refusal by many, gay and straight, to define gay men and women as a culture or subculture?

    When I was 17, like a good, politically minded Jewish boy, I read Benjamin Netanyahu's book A Place Among the Nations. In it he explained that the Palestinians were not a people, just Jordanian tenant farmers with no distinct culture. I believed him. Then, a few years later, I was reading an article from Germany in the 19th century that explained that Yiddish wasn't a real language, just corrupted German, a jargon. I started to realize that denying the existence of a culture is a really great way of denying the needs of that culture. Yiddish isn't the language of a people, just bad German. Palestinians aren't a distinct culture, just some people who should move out of Israel. Gay bars and Grindr aren't the cultural tools of a people, just trashy behavior.

    Keeping gays from identifying as a group is a great way of keeping us from supporting each other and our rights. But even the people who would deny our rights still acknowledge that we have shared culture. Any schoolyard bully or gender policing frat boy knows what a fag is. We have litanies of stereotypes for "fags" and "dykes," and they're just all kinda bad. So we want to define homosexuality as an act, define a culture associated with homosexuality, but insist upon the right of people committing homosexual acts to distance themselves from that culture.
    It got me thinking (here's some thinkage from my blog), but overall, I have to say I fully agree with the author. Without mentioning any names (I like not being banned), I encounter this mentality of "it's what I do, not who I am" so often in the Coming Out & Relationships forum - and from those giving advice, not the ones asking for it - that it really gets me sad how ashamed so many of us are to belong to the gay community.

    I know it's a lengthy read, but I urge you to go through the whole article. Let's take a break from the evils of Obama, Benghazi and gun control.
    That we are capable only of being what we are, remains our unforgivable sin.
    - Gene Wolfe

  2. #2
    veni, vidi, reliqui
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    Re: "Yes, Nate Silver, You Are a Gay Statistician"



    Someone didn't know that he was a raving homo?

  3. #3
    Execuvette Rolyo85's Avatar
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    Re: "Yes, Nate Silver, You Are a Gay Statistician"

    I didn't either. And "raving"? Hardly. Anyway, it's not just about Nate Silver. He is just an example.
    That we are capable only of being what we are, remains our unforgivable sin.
    - Gene Wolfe

  4. #4
    Do I dare to eat a peach?
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    Re: "Yes, Nate Silver, You Are a Gay Statistician"

    What has his being gay got to do with anything? Don't see the point.

  5. #5
    Execuvette Rolyo85's Avatar
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    Re: "Yes, Nate Silver, You Are a Gay Statistician"

    Well, the article makes a good case in answer to your question. I mean, there's a link in the OP :/
    That we are capable only of being what we are, remains our unforgivable sin.
    - Gene Wolfe

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    Re: "Yes, Nate Silver, You Are a Gay Statistician"

    I don't think the excerpt got the message across, maybe add in the last two paragraphs or something to make it clear.

    I don't disagree with the author, I think many good points were made.

    It kind of made me mad when it was pointed out that Silver actively avoids being affiliated but then says he prefers Chicago's gay scene to NYC. The author really highlighted the main issue: presumption of heterosexuality leads to assumption of defined ability.

  7. #7
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    You're probably right, but it's too late for me to add the quote to the OP.
    That we are capable only of being what we are, remains our unforgivable sin.
    - Gene Wolfe

  8. #8
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    Re: "Yes, Nate Silver, You Are a Gay Statistician"

    not sure why this thread resides here

    and I think the author is not only not funny (he lists himself as a comedian) but i found his generalizations about gay men pretty fucked up

    and I don't understand nate silver any better after this piece

  9. #9
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    Re: "Yes, Nate Silver, You Are a Gay Statistician"

    Quote Originally Posted by palbert View Post
    What has his being gay got to do with anything? Don't see the point.
    It breaks a stereotype, or at least chips away at it. I still know straights who think no gay guy would ever go out for sports, or like 4WD trucks and going mudding, or like to hunt, or any "masculine" endeavors -- and if they do learn beyond a doubt that a gay guy has, then they assume the guy is there only to try to turn some guys gay.

    So here we have Nate Silver, certainly gay but not in one of the "expected" professions, but also pretty certainly not "hunting" straights. It knocks a chip off the stereotype.

    "Thirty-one* states allow all qualified citizens to carry concealed weapons. In those states, homosexuals should embark on organized efforts to become comfortable with guns, learn to use them safely and carry them. They should set up Pink Pistols task forces, sponsor shooting courses and help homosexuals get licensed to carry. And they should do it in a way that gets as much publicity as possible. "

    --Jonathan Rauch, Salon Magazine, March 13, 2000

    *the number is now forty

  10. #10
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    Re: "Yes, Nate Silver, You Are a Gay Statistician"

    Quote Originally Posted by mightbe View Post
    I don't think the excerpt got the message across, maybe add in the last two paragraphs or something to make it clear.

    I don't disagree with the author, I think many good points were made.

    It kind of made me mad when it was pointed out that Silver actively avoids being affiliated but then says he prefers Chicago's gay scene to NYC. The author really highlighted the main issue: presumption of heterosexuality leads to assumption of defined ability.
    Like this part?


    Todd Glass is a talented, amazing comic who has amazing insight on my life and perspective but who vows not to share those observations. It made me really sad. I want to hear Todd Glass's jokes about being gay.

    When Todd Glass said he wouldn't change what he does onstage, the host of the podcast, the nice, liberal, broad-thinking Marc Maron, said, "Yeah, I don't think you'll be touring with Scott Capurro any time soon." Scott Capurro is a well-regarded comic who's been out for all of his career, but a comic who isn't nearly as successful as Todd Glass is, in part because he's been out for all of his career. The conversation was clearly defining that Scott Capurro was a "gay comic" and Todd Glass was a "good comic." Todd won't change; he won't become a "gay comic"; he'll stay a "good comic."

    So what the hell am I?

    I am working my hardest to be a good gay comic. Nate Silver should be doing his best to be a stellar gay statistician.

    When Phillip Roth started writing, he was a Jewish novelist, because real novelists didn't write books about masturbating with a beef liver. When Toni Morrison started writing, she was a black novelist, because real novelists don't have hair like a maid. In the intervening years, enough Jews wrote awesome, dirty books that Phillip Roth is now just a novelist. Toni Morrison still has to be a black novelist, but at least she's done enough work that when someone sees an 80-year-old black woman with silvery locks, they realized that "Nobel Prize winner" is one of her possible professions.

    So, yes, Nate Silver, Barack Obama has to be a black president, Tammy Baldwin has to be a lesbian senator and you have to be a gay statistician. Otherwise, people will never learn.

    "Thirty-one* states allow all qualified citizens to carry concealed weapons. In those states, homosexuals should embark on organized efforts to become comfortable with guns, learn to use them safely and carry them. They should set up Pink Pistols task forces, sponsor shooting courses and help homosexuals get licensed to carry. And they should do it in a way that gets as much publicity as possible. "

    --Jonathan Rauch, Salon Magazine, March 13, 2000

    *the number is now forty

  11. #11
    Bammer's Papa
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    Re: "Yes, Nate Silver, You Are a Gay Statistician"

    Quote Originally Posted by chance1 View Post
    notsurewhythisthreadresideshereandIthinktheauthori snotonlynotfunny(helistshimselfasacomedian)butifou ndhisgeneralizationsaboutgaymenprettyfuckedupandId on'tunderstandnatesilveranybetterafterthispiece
    Sounds like you missed the whole point.

    "Thirty-one* states allow all qualified citizens to carry concealed weapons. In those states, homosexuals should embark on organized efforts to become comfortable with guns, learn to use them safely and carry them. They should set up Pink Pistols task forces, sponsor shooting courses and help homosexuals get licensed to carry. And they should do it in a way that gets as much publicity as possible. "

    --Jonathan Rauch, Salon Magazine, March 13, 2000

    *the number is now forty

  12. #12
    Execuvette Rolyo85's Avatar
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    Re: "Yes, Nate Silver, You Are a Gay Statistician"

    Quote Originally Posted by chance1 View Post
    not sure why this thread resides here

    and I think the author is not only not funny (he lists himself as a comedian) but i found his generalizations about gay men pretty fucked up

    and I don't understand nate silver any better after this piece
    1. The thread resides here because the current perception of gay people is - to me - part of "current events and politics".

    2. I don't think there was any offensive generalization in the article, it speaks about the need for people in non-typically-gay fields to be more open about their sexuality to break the stereotype.

    3. Nate Silver is an example for a broader subject. The article isn't meant to acquaint you better with him.
    That we are capable only of being what we are, remains our unforgivable sin.
    - Gene Wolfe

  13. #13
    Bammer's Papa
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    Re: "Yes, Nate Silver, You Are a Gay Statistician"

    Quote Originally Posted by Rolyo85 View Post
    1. The thread resides here because the current perception of gay people is - to me - part of "current events and politics".

    2. I don't think there was any offensive generalization in the article, it speaks about the need for people in non-typically-gay fields to be more open about their sexuality to break the stereotype.

    3. Nate Silver is an example for a broader subject. The article isn't meant to acquaint you better with him.
    You missed "the author wasn't trying to be funny".

    "Thirty-one* states allow all qualified citizens to carry concealed weapons. In those states, homosexuals should embark on organized efforts to become comfortable with guns, learn to use them safely and carry them. They should set up Pink Pistols task forces, sponsor shooting courses and help homosexuals get licensed to carry. And they should do it in a way that gets as much publicity as possible. "

    --Jonathan Rauch, Salon Magazine, March 13, 2000

    *the number is now forty

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