Country singer Steve Grand posted a picture to his instagram account that got a lot of people… talking. Here’s what Steve had to say about the situation…
I try not to pay too much attention. At some point in life it’s important to realize that no matter what you do, people are going to have something to say about it so you may as well do/wear what makes you happy. I’ve seen a small number of gay men criticize my choice of swimwear for being immodest and ‘stereotypically gay.’ People are entitled to feel however they feel, but again, I wear what I wear for me and not for them; because it makes me feel good. I’m not looking for everyone’s approval all of the time. There is a time and place for modesty, but, for me at least, a hot summer day in Chicago, on a boat with a bunch of other gay dudes is not one of them. And frankly I don’t care what some may consider to be a gay stereotype or not, and anyone using that as some kind of jab is probably grappling with their own internalized homophobia. I wear what makes me happy.
Kudos to Steve for standing up for himself, but what I want to bring up here – and hopefully other people will explore this thought – is the idea of “stereotypical gay”. I’ve posted before about how there are factions within the gay community who feel like they don’t fit the “stereotypical gay” mold, while others are clearly condemning people who DO fit the gay stereotype. Who among us isn’t guilty of judging the “queeny gay guy” at least once in our life?
I guess the question is – why? Why does the community feel the need to tear gay guys – in this case Steve Grand – down for expressing himself and wearing what he wants to wear? And more importantly, why do those people think their approval matters?