Every September, we Montrealers must endure an annual descent into the deepest confines of the inferno: frosh week. Rite of passage for all new university students, frosh week entails youth dishing out at least $100 to participate in a bender that involves taking over all night-dwellers’ favorite venues in the most intrusive way possible. While college students excitedly count down the days until frosh, most Montrealers anticipate the event with a growing sense of dread, shuddering at the mere idea of obnoxious street chants and puking young adults.
However, locals have peacefully resigned to endure the ordeal – since this initiation only happens once a year, there is no real harm done in kids being loud and invasive. Nevertheless, there are certain actions that remain unacceptable no matter how inebriated their perpetrators.
Upon a tragic September evening where I was not wise enough to cozily bundle up at home – why let some drunken college kids scare me out of enjoying a Saturday night? – I wearily ended up at McKibbin’s Irish Pub. Naturally, McKibbins is an automatic red flag – here is the hearth of decadence and misery where shallow girls in painfully high heels strut awkwardly around men as sophisticated as gorillas. Things grew particularly atrocious when I realized that the Concordia engineering faculty just so happened to be hosting a frosh pub-crawl then and there.
However, the real problem began once I stepped outside for respite. On the sidewalk, two female figures were sensually interlocked, quietly necking in their corner. Nothing unusual there – drunken fumbling make-out sessions are a staple of the bar scene. Nobody even bats an eyelash when two people of the opposite sex go at it – on the contrary, the latter are always given their privacy. Nevertheless, in this situation, loud cheers and whistles suddenly resonated from a dozen of intoxicated young men – Concordia engineering froshies. While they leered and sneered as though the girls were some sort pornographic circus animals, the boys took on a glorious chant going along the lines of “Tits are for boys! Tits are for boys!” When one of the two women angrily interrupted the embrace to berate the students for their disrespect, plainly telling them to stop, not a single culprit apologized. Instead, the girls were greeted with more egging as they returned into each other’s arms. For all we know, these two girls could have been dating for years. It must be terrible for them to be weary of kissing in public out of fear of becoming a lewd spectacle for chauvinist boys.
This event of a regressive nature makes one think back to the whole debate of whether or not gay people (or anyone else who is not part of the heterosexual and/or cisgender “norm”) should be allowed to demonstrate affection in public. Was that question not solved ages ago? To be fair, the incident that I just described did not fully come from a place of homophobia. It is partially the result of pouring liquor down hormone-fuelled bodies crammed into a space so small that each individual melts into one primitive mass of raunchy behavior and reckless ideas. In the limited minds of young men possessing the sexual knowledge of a watermelon, women only ever act to cater to the sexual needs of the male and his “vital” organ. God forbid that two girls can actually desire each other. Nah. ‘Lesbians’ are just straight women putting on a show for repugnant misogynistic men to masturbate to.
The immediate reaction of the drunken male students to a lesbian couple highlights another issue in our 21st century approach to sexuality: men are so exposed to heterosexual women performing homosexual acts for an almost exclusively male audience (for instance, lesbian porn), that their minds are ingrained with the notion that lesbian women solely exist for the enjoyment of heterosexual men. In fact, homosexuality and bisexuality have almost become a trend amongst women trying to maximize their sexual prowess with the intent of impressing guys (ironically highlighting their heterosexuality). How absurd is it for a specific sexual orientation to become fashionable? Fashion is frivolous, fleeting, meaningless. Sexual orientation is a critical part of a person’s identity. While artists such as Katy Perry (I Kissed a Girl) continue to gross millions by turning woman-on-woman action into something ‘hip’, immature and ignorant men will continue to believe that any romantic or sexual involvement between two women is just for show.
In protest against Prop 8 [American proposition against gay marriage], Amanda Palmer and Margaret Cho satirize Katy Perry’s I Kissed a Girl, a song that insinuates how sexy it is for two girls to make out, even if the girls themselves are not actually gay