Posted by Pattie on 5/14/2002 08:38:00 PM

Gay activists are upset that the current stink over priests who molest children is causing a backlash against gay men. With the Catholic Church's new declaration that child molestation is forgiveable at least once, but being gay is not, I can see why they would be worried. Hate always upsets me no matter how pious sounding the words.

The Chicago "superstation" WGN's local news had a piece about backlash on this evening's broadcast. A spokeswoman for a group representing gay Catholics (an oxymoron?) said something that go me thinking. "Prejudice against gays are the last acceptable form of prejudice in the United States."

"The last acceptable prejudice." I have heard that many times in my 44 or so years. A lot of fat activists say that about fat hatred as well. That's part of why it jolted me. My first inclination was to laugh ruefully and say "if only." Then I realized that's why people say it. We keep hoping that if we just clear up this cause or that cause, all will be well. All we have to do is find that last little bit of hate and get rid of it and then all will be well.

So each group that calls for its place in the rainbow of cause celebs promises this is the last issue to bring up. It is a way of saying, "I know that you are tired of fighting the good fight, but this will be the last one and then the struggle will be done." It is like a Hollywood Fairy (sorry for the pun) Tale ending.

So I'll say it here and now. I don't think fat hatred is the last acceptable prejudice. I think there are a thousand ways that people try to divide themselves into good and bad categories and that bigots will find someone new to hate when the work is done. But I am fat and I am tired of being bombarded a thousand times a day with images and messages that say something is wrong with me. I want it to stop. I want it to stop because it isn't fair. I want it to stop because they are wasting valuable people resources. I want it to stop because it is NOT right to treat people this way, including me. I just want it to stop.

I cannot stop hatred. I cannot stop bigotry. I cannot stop misunderstanding.

I can only promise everyone else that I will not hate. I will question my thoughts and ask where I learned what I know and mark my misunderstandings and misinformation. I will question authority. I will question legitimation tactics. I will deconstruct and rebuild.

I will change my thinking when I learn better.

I expect everyone else to do the same.

I expect nothing less.