Breaking news! All that you thought you knew about homophobic people turns out to be true. You’ve been saying it for years, and it turns out that you were right. It’s scientific and stuff, too. Yes, imagine the fun you can have citing this study that proves that homophobia is associated with homosexual arousal to back up your claims that those who hate homosexuals are actually suppressing homoerotic urges. And this is bigger than Freud and his misogynistic, creepy theories.
In a Department of Psychology, University of Georgia, Athens study published on PubMed.gov, the authors come to the conclusion that homophobia is associated with homosexual arousal:
The authors investigated the role of homosexual arousal in exclusively heterosexual men who admitted negative affect toward homosexual individuals. Participants consisted of a group of homophobic men (n = 35) and a group of nonhomophobic men (n = 29); they were assigned to groups on the basis of their scores on the Index of Homophobia (W. W. Hudson & W. A. Ricketts, 1980). The men were exposed to sexually explicit erotic stimuli consisting of heterosexual, male homosexual, and lesbian videotapes, and changes in penile circumference were monitored. They also completed an Aggression Questionnaire (A. H. Buss & M. Perry, 1992). Both groups exhibited increases in penile circumference to the heterosexual and female homosexual videos. Only the homophobic men showed an increase in penile erection to male homosexual stimuli. The groups did not differ in aggression. Homophobia is apparently associated with homosexual arousal that the homophobic individual is either unaware of or denies.
This study is actually years old, and yet never as relevant as it is today as Republican candidates take to the stage to squeal that they will repeal DADT and make gay marriage illegal on a federal level, while ignoring jobs and the economy. It’s enough to make any sane person wonder.
Psychology Today broke it down:
When viewing lesbian sex and straight sex, both the homophobic and the non-homophobic men showed increased penis circumference. For gay male sex, however, only the homophobic men showed heightened penis arousal.
Heterosexual men with the most anti-gay attitudes, when asked, reported not being sexually aroused by gay male sex videos. But, their penises reported otherwise.
Darn penises (or peni as The Donald would no doubt say). The Republican Party flees in terror.
I haven’t seen additional studies on this, and one would want to see these results duplicated, but this study does differentiate from arousal that can result from anger and specifies the arousal measured as sexual. I think we can all agree that the penis doesn’t lie as often as a politician or demagogue con artist raking in millions by appealing to hate.
This theory has been out there since Freud posited it. It is predictable that the Republican Party suffers reliable and consistent public humiliation after their most ardent anti-homosexual puppets get busted in public bathrooms doing the dirty deed.
Many theories in psychology account for this other than the homoerotic enlarged penile circumference. There’s projection that allows the person to distance themselves from what they most fear and despise in themselves. There’s denial leading to all kinds of machinations meant to assist in avoiding facing the truth.
And then there’s just common sense. How much energy does it take to hate an entire segment of people, to work tirelessly in order to deny them the right to serve in the military, to marry, to get access to healthcare and the pension of their spouse, even the right to visit their partner in the hospital?
Most people simply don’t care what strangers do with their life. It’s beyond telling when a political party and so called religion come together in service of this kind of hate. Fear often drives the individual; fear of their own desires and fear of their own choices. But the agenda of the political religious group is much more suspect. What do they stand to gain from focusing on something quite irrelevant to most of our daily lives? And more importantly, what are the results of their efforts?
Children bullying other children based on this kind of purposeful hate is on the rise. What causes homophobic bullying?
The root cause may well be prejudice against gay and lesbian people. Even very young children, who do not understand what homosexuality is, may be encouraged to indulge in homophobic behaviour by this general prejudice.
Individual motivations may be more complicated and, as in the case of other forms of bullying, may include a desire for power or a need for affiliation: some people gain satisfaction from imposing their power on others and a group will be strengthened if someone else is outside that group. Identifying people as being different because of their gender orientation may be a convenient excuse for isolating and persecuting them. The bonds that tie the members of a group together are strengthened because the members are not “different”.
Fear may also be a motivation – as the word “homophobic” suggests. This can be a fear of the unknown, a fear of someone who is perceived to be different, or a fear which is based on uncertainty about the nature of their own developing sexuality
Sure, you already knew this, but now you can back it up with science. The groups who perpetrate such ugly hate on a national, macro level are not much different from the childhood bully; they’re afraid, they’re attempting to put themselves in a position of power and authority over another group for their own benefit, and they are attempting to pull their group together by singling out those who don’t belong – a tactic often used by weakened groups whose only hope at survival is to divide and conquer.
The results of this deliberate appeal to the politics of hate have been horrific and unconscionable. We must stand together as a nation in order to call out the use of bigotry and hate as a political ploy and money-raising scam.