A few months ago I read an article on the Huffington Post that cited a new article claiming gay males are much more proportionately likely to have an eating disorder than straight males. This is a pretty expected result but when thinking about reasons why this is so, it’s especially disappointing.
In popular culture, the gay male persona falls into one of two groups. First, you have the standard or stereotypical pretty, thin or fit. In the other group, you have everyone else. Most gay men I know fall into neither group but I’m willing to bet most have had issues with body image at some point in their lives as they strive to fit into the thin and fit group, because that’s what represents us.
How sensitive is too sensitive? Is there a line drawn for when something is too trivial to be reasonably offended over? Does someone have the right to be offended on behalf of someone else?
Sometimes I ask myself these questions after hearing about a situation in which a group has been in some way targeted in a music video, a film, a statement made by a public figure, or an advertisement. When in doubt, I often try to spin the situation to make it apply as equally as I can to something I can relate to and then ask myself if it would offend me then.
Jared Leto has received some criticism for his role as Rayon, a transgender woman with AIDS during the 1980s AIDS epidemic in the film Dallas Buyers Club. Detractors say the part should have gone to a woman who identifies as transgender and that casting a straight, cisgender, white man in the role is disrespectful, especially since TV and film are