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Was Ghandi Gay?
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mudcub
Was Ghandi Gay? Please read this article:

http://andrewsullivan.theatlantic.com/the_daily_dish/2011/03/dissent-of-the-day.html

and then let me know what you think! Straight people must get tired of the question. Was Lincoln gay? Was James Buchanan gay?

If you think of homosexuality as ONLY about the sexual act, then the correct answer is = we will never know. We don't know if Ghandi ever had gay sex because we weren't there. Photo or it didn't happen. However, as a gay man, I sometimes look at historical figures and think, "Oh yeah... I can really relate to that behavior... when I was closeted, I did those exact same things."

For example, read this section from a new book about Ghandi:

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

The love of his life was a German-Jewish architect and bodybuilder, Hermann Kallenbach, for whom Gandhi left his wife in 1908. "Your portrait (the only one) stands on my mantelpiece in my bedroom," he wrote to Kallenbach. "The mantelpiece is opposite to the bed." The two pledged "more love, and yet more love . . . such love as they hope the world has not yet seen."

But when Ghandi thought about male-female relations, he wrote this:

"I cannot imagine a thing as ugly as the intercourse of men and women."

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

If you are a straight man reading this post... can you read the above and see yourself reflected in those quotes? That straight sex was "ugly", but with a male friend you could make love as "the world has not yet seen"?

I think Ghandi might have been asexual. Bisexual maybe. Gay probably. But definitely not straight.

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I have long thought Buchanan to be gay; Lincoln
only in the past 20 years.

Ghandi?

I never gave his sexuality a second thought.

Gay? Perhaps... why not?

Life will be a lot more fun when we automatically assume that every person worth lauding is queer, and find ourselves shocked to note that some famous person unfortunately indulged in mixed-gender sexual activity. I'm still wondering if Thomas Jefferson had a hot black stud hidden somewhere for some spontaneous buggery.

i think the entire founders of the country and first settlers were gay at some time as they did share beds as were the custom when traveling :) with maybe the exception of good ol' Ben, the horny bugger.

Oh, and what was up with jebus wandering around with a dozen horny sailors and one hooker who never boinked any of the guys? Those love letters between apostles Paul and Timothy? Isn't every guy named Tim just assumed to be a bottom?

It is Jesues, and remeber it is the idiots who supposedly do (crimes) in his name that screw things up.

Since Jesues loved everyone, you can go with that thought as you may. Now since so many so called "preachers" who say they do his work have boyfreinds and girlfreinds outside their marriges, sort of makes you think what Jesues was :)

Well, the fact that Ghandi did a lot of hard work to better the world is a very telling sign that he was gay. Straight guys don't need to improve things as they already have privilege so anything that helps others is a threat to themselves.

To add to the reasons he may have been gay: He shaved every day; had absolutely no hair or beard; and probably thought a beard would make him look "older."

(Deleted comment)

it is so passe to think in sexual terms

It is like l'anglais Andrew Sullivan to post such speculation :-.D Valise! The English have never forgiven that frail Indian for kicking their ass out of India.

Why is it so important that a dead notable be on "our" camp? To validate ourselves? Then, we have not won. We shouldn't care whether or not somebody's gay. We should care that they're happy or are able to have the kind of fantasy they long for.

Attraction is vague, fluid and complicated. A person who's never had a sexual experience with the less preferred gender of his sexual penchant may one day be attracted to a person of the less preferred gender and have a unique relationship with that person because of that person and that person alone. That experience does not necessarily alter or define the 1st person's sexual preference? But then again, it may. Who knows?

The line between bond and love and the (physical) expression of that bond and love would be so blurred if people were allowed to be more honest about their feelings. But then, the American emotional landscape would forever be changed, and that would upset a lot of people.

One thing for sure: If gay was only sexual, there would not be the kind of fear that breeds the kind of resistance to equality that exists in this country. No, the people who resist gay in America understand very well that "gay" is way beyond sex. It's the real and potent intimacy of gay that scares the hell out of haters. Not the sex.

I don't care if Gandhi was gay. I only hope he had what he wanted.

Re: it is so passe to think in sexual terms

Does it matter? I'd say "yes".

As a gay kid growing up, it would have been nice if I thought I wasn't the only one. For example, if I was taught that some of history's biggest artists, inventors, and politicians were gay - that might have helped. Instead, I didn't see people like me in history books, so I thought homosexuality was invented in the sixties.

Also, it makes Ghandi a more interesting *human* person than that dull lifeless biopic they did in the eighties.

Re: it is so passe to think in sexual terms

(Anonymous)
Does it matter? I'd say "yes".

Why? Other than the reason you give (i. e., that you would have felt better about being gay as a kid with gay role models), is there a *compelling* reason that it should be so important for somebody famous to be gay (other than for us to feel good/better about ourselves)?


As a gay kid growing up, it would have been nice if I thought I wasn't the only one. For example, if I was taught that some of history's biggest artists, inventors, and politicians were gay - that might have helped. Instead, I didn't see people like me in history books, so I thought homosexuality was invented in the sixties.

While I identify with this line of reasoning, I've gotten over this excuse of not feeling good about my gay self because I had no gay role models growing up.

While I would agree that it would have been nice to see more positive portraits of gay people in the past - particularly around the AIDS era - as a kid, I was curious enough to find my way to gay personalities via literature, the arts and the media. Because the fact of the matter is no matter how many heroes there are out there, if you don't feel good about yourself and are not curious enough to look for role models, you're not going to find them. They'll do you no good. And you'll stay the way you are.

This is why I think the rhetoric of "I might have felt or turned out *better* if there were more gay role models/heroes out there while I was growing up" does not hold up: If this was true, then, why are there more suicidal gay teenagers today than there were in past decades? For the all the exposure to positive gay models today, "gay" remains problematic for more kids growing up today than ever.

Why is that? Why is "gay" a worse dilemma for more kids growing up today than ever - in spite of the plethora of positive gay models around?

Isn't this why the "It Gets Better" campaign started by Dan Savage which you yourself contributed a clip is so much more popular among the adults who have "made" it and now tell the kids "it gets better" than many of the kids they're trying to reach? I'm not saying that the campaign hasn't reached anyone. I'm just saying: Why don't we talk about "What if it doesn't get better" to the kids and to ourselves?

I don't think it's because of the lack of (positive) gay models, do you?

The fact is life is up to US. Not anyone else like us. Their presence would only help in a superficial way.

This said, I reiterate that in *some* cases, it helps to have positive role models. But if that was true - and we will grant that it is for the sake of this discussion - it doesn't solve the real problems of so many others to whom the presence of positive role models does not help.


Also, it makes Ghandi a more interesting *human* person than that dull lifeless biopic they did in the eighties.

Because he is presumably gay? Sorry, but that seems utterly absurd - that being gay would somehow interject "interesting-ness" to an otherwise bland personality before the speculation has no logic whatsoever! How desperate can we get to feel good about being gay???

If you reverse this rhetoric, you will find the reasoning and logic for coming out in the last 30 years in America: "Look, I'm gay! But I'm the same person/jock/dork you have always known and liked or disliked!".

Isn't this true?

You didn't have any role models. But you're still here. Today's kids have plenty of positive role models but they still don't feel good about themselves and/or being gay, some to the point of taking their lives.

What does that tell you?

That is my point.

Re: it is so passe to think in sexual terms

"Other than the reason you give... is there a *compelling* reason"...?

Um, there were two reasons I gave, not just one, Mr. Anonymous. Please read more carefully. And I think my points are persuasive. And I made my argument using 2% of the wordage you spouted.

"it is so passe to think in sexual terms"

Wrong. I am not talking abut sex. As my post started out - this is not about where Ghandi put his penis. It's about whether he had intimate emotional relationships with men. I think it's interesting, and makes him a more human person than the Ben Kingsley hagiography because it hints at a cause for his problems with women, his alienation from society, and his odd combination of global humanitarianism and local misanthropy.

Some of us like to study history, and learn from it. Create arguments and lines of reasoning, and discuss ideas about primal causes. You seem to be above all that because it's 'passe' to think.

"I've gotten over this excuse of not feeling good about my gay self because I had no gay role models growing up." My interpretation = you are comfortable with the whitewashing of history because you now have privilege.

"Why is 'gay' a worse dilemma for more kids growing up today than ever?" Not sure where you are getting your statistics. I think you're just making them up. Things I've heard from young gay people say that their peers don't care they are gay. Their problem is with the older generation of teachers and parents... the ones who grew up without gay role models or an acceptance of gay culture.

"Why don't we talk about 'What if it doesn't get better'?" Dan Savage's web site has some interesting people who make exactly that point. I'm not sure what you want to add to the conversation. I don't think you will try to add to that dialogue.

"That is my point." Delivered badly, but thanks. Pardon for being cranky - I'm off to a funeral.

Re: it is so passe to think in sexual terms

Sorry I forgot to log in: that anonymous comment was me.

I dont want to even think about it. however as I posted last week I did knock back a ghandi clone wearing a dirty t shirt last week.

(Deleted comment)
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