Archive for the ‘politics’ Category

Of the Dead Speak Only Good: Jerry Falwell is dead.

May 16, 2007

Falwell was an infuriating character, and I think a lot of the anger that is coming out now from the gay and/or progressive community is a logical extension of that. He had an amazing, homogenous stupidity: there were very few surprises that came out of him. It’s not like he had a good side, an endearing, kind, warm, charitable side. If he did, then these sides were certainly kept out of the “public discourse,” and the most that can be said of him is that he gave a face and distinctively repugnant voice to what a lot of close-minded Americans were thinking—that they had the answers, and the answers were simple, stupid, and usually what they had, too, had been taught by their families and parents.

But I think that there is another facet to the anger that is coming from Falwell’s death: that he actually instilled fear into the minds of a lot of gay men and women. That under that chubby, down-home, Ya’ll comeexterior was a really vicious man, and he could get away with that viciousness in ways that someone like the current Pope, Benedict XVI, can not. Pope Benedict is too transparently rigid, cold, and uningratiating. People may love him because he’s the Pope, but he’s not fooling anyone when he rails against homosexuality, birth control, freedom of choice, and all the other ills of “secularism.” But Falwell, whom one progessive said should go straight to Heaven, where he’ll be found lying between Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny, could come off on TV as the cuddly uncle, the country uncle who told it like it was: and that was scary. That was worse than the skinny man in a dress leading the flock. This country is filled with anti-Catholic people who would still swallow every word Falwell said; they’d never believe the Pope, but they would “Amen” with Falwell all the way to the Inquisition.

The Christians Want to Expunge David from the Bible

April 20, 2007

If I had not read it, I would never have believed it. Amazon, working with their constant sales philosophy of “Find a hole and fill it,” has opened up a Christian Bookstore. I found this out trawling at the site for my book, The Substance of God, A Spiritual Thriller, which had a link to the bookstore. There, along with sales for books aimed at the most family-obsessed of family-destroying people, I found a URL for a discussion on gay couples in the Bible. There was of course a lead discussion about David and his love for Jonathan, and Jonathan’s love for him. I have always contended that the story of Jonathan and David is the first instance of real human intimacy in the Bible; in no other place is there a detailing of real love, attraction, and all the risks and intensities of coupling. There are wonderful examples of arranged meetings, of generically heterosexual couples who agree to bond and have children, but nowhere is there the genuine romance and tenderness of the story of Jonathan and David.

Well, the Christians don’t believe this. They want David expunged from the Bible.

Here’s a few examples, dripping from the horse’s mouths:

PSI [whose nickname is “Amazonpatroll”] says:
Will you sign my petition to have david expunged from the bible? WE MUST THINK OF THE CHILDREN!

[a reasonable reply follows]

You guys are hilarious!
I’ve always heard that there were truly stupid people in the world, but never really met them. Of course, I haven’t met you either so I guess that hasn’t changed.
Too bad David isn’t around to defend himself. With the snap of a finger and a brief whisper, 30 of his most well trained warriors would hunt you down and relieve you of the head you refuse to use. I guess that is the security of denigrating someone who’s been dead for 3000 years.

PSI says:
You gay folks can just laugh at the bible and ten [sic] see where you end up for eternity.

James Cronfel says:

[Next bit of insanity—no wonder psychotic Moslem fundamentalists are going hand-to-hand with their Christian counterparts]

project light says:
(referencing to the Quest Study Bible)
Was this relationship homosexual?
No. The Hebrew verb indicating homosexual activity is never used to describe the relationship between Jonathan and David. Their love was expressed in the form of a covenant, much as God’s relationship to Israel was. The same Hebrew word used in 1 Samuel 18:1 also describes the relationship between two countries that sign a treaty together. Elsewhere, Scripture prohibits homosexual activity (Lev. 18:22; 1 Cor. 6:9-11).

PSI [back again—one cannot keep a good idiot down] says:
The bible was censored to hide the fact that he was light in the loafers. Everything about him screams out “I’m gay!”

B. Fraser says:
Homosocial might be a more adequate description. Most military cultures have a type of homosocial emotional bonding which may or may not include actual sexual contact.

Judith A. hillard [a practical woman] says:
Loafers weren’t even a part of the dress code until the 1940s and popularized by schoolgirls in the 50s with shiny pennies.

Susan Strong [whose nickname, I learned is “Ladybracknell2”, which would make an excellent drag name in the Worldwide Imperial Court] says:

Dude, seriously?
Honestly…this is being debated?
I’m not the smartest person on earth, and certainly don’t claim to have some kind of secret knowledge about this, but I did just finish a study on the life of David. While I cannot claim to be wise, and I do not read Hebrew (although I am sigining up for a class to learn how to do so) may we consider the possiblity that is NOT a verse (or two) about homosexuality?

I mean, I have a best friend who is a woman. I love her like a sister…no, deeper than that. Sometimes there are friendships on this earth in which a connection is shared, a deep understanding. In a sense, her love is “better than my husband’s,” because she just gets things that he can’t understand. It has nothing to do with being homosexual.

Understand, I do not shake my fist at the homosexual. It’s no worse than any sin I have committed. I believe that Christianity is an equal opportunity religion. We all suck, and God loves us all.

(By the way, a kiss was a very common form of Eastern greeting/parting. Judas Iscariot greeted Jesus with a kiss…does that mean Jesus was gay? That his disciples had orgies with him? I think that that might be a bit of a stretch…)

When you read the Bible looking for justification of something, or reading something into it, you will find what you are looking for. Caananites sacraficed their children to the god Molech. It’s in the Bible. Does that mean you can justify infanticide?

[end of quoted discussions]

You can find this enlightening discussion at:

And if you want more, there is an equally revivifying bit of verbal intercourse on:

“If you don’t literally believe in the Genesis account, you can’t be a Christian”

So take that, all you ungodly scrupture-suckers! I will, of course have more to say about this at my site,, which is currently being considered for serious discussion at Jerry Falwell’s aptly named Liberty College. default page of Perry Brass site

Ideas about art, life, and the American Way of Loneliness › Create New Post — WordPress

April 18, 2007

Ideas about art, life, and the American Way of Loneliness › Create New Post — WordPress

Lee Iacocca & I

April 18, 2007

The Harvet, a novel about the one-corporation take-over of AmericaLee Iacocca and I

A few days ago, my friend John sent me a copy of piece by Lee Iacocca, ex head of G.M., that was meant, I guess, to promote his new book, Where Have All the Leaders Gone? (I guess the answer to that is, “Long time passing”—especially if you judge by our current crop in Washington, PB—Post Bubya, or is that Dubya?)

The strangest, most unsettling thing about the current situation in American life is how unsurprising it is. I mean, Bill Clinton was a surprise. Here was a man who came from nothing, out of nowhere, was incredibly smart (the word “brilliant” is not wasted on him), capable, and against huge odds (many of which came from himself, but I can understand that, having come from nothing myself) was elected president, then re-elected, and, then surprisingly, left office, although still popular, in public disgrace. The surprise was that for someone so gifted he flubbed so badly—and was pathetically weak when he should have been stronger.

However, Dubya is no surprise. He is about as much of a surprise as Hitler, who telegraphed every filthy intention. Born with a silver spoon in his mouth and a head full of pork rinds, George W. Bush could not, as we say in the South, run for dogcatcher, without a whole football team of backstage of handlers, phony Christian mouthpieces, schoolyard-bully wannabees like Cheney, Rumsfelt, Ashcroft, Wolfowitz, Gonzales, etc. The only surprise in the last six years has been the lack of the genuine embarrassment he has caused.

But reading Iacocca’s rant, and it is very much a rant, brought out in me this response:

Dear John,

Thanks for sending me this. The best thing I can say about this is that it’s, well, “amusing.” Iacocca hasn’t figured out what’s going on. He’s just traveling around it. Bush’s election and then re-election weren’t flukes; they were beautifully planned and executed—he is, frankly, the side show that keeps us amused because the real show is too devastating: basically that most Americans can no longer afford to live here without an amount of work and anxiety that is so numbing they’ll do anything—turn to religion, pop-celeb-worship idiocy, etc.—to avoid facing it. That the top .01% of the population, not the top 1%, now owns 47% of the stock market. That a staggering 87% of the American people, by a recent NY Times/CBS poll, believe in the Virgin Birth, and a similar number likewise disbelieve in the Theory of Evolution. That we are absolutely addicted to technology, and every piece of it, including this email, takes away some part of our privacy, but that is unimportant, because in a corporate-run society, any attempt at privacy is completely suspect and will destroy anyone who holds on to it. So, we have this side show going on of Bush, this war, gay marriage, American Idol, Dancing with the Stars, MTV News, etc. while the real show is ignored.

What I find harded to understand is that so few people are seeing any of this. That does not mean that no one is, just few of us. The late John Kenneth Galbraith did; Gore Vidal does; and maybe occasionally some writers for The New York Times. But we are so busy now dealing with the “weirdness” of America, even while a business-as-usual war is going on that the evidence right in front of us is lost. America is becoming a Third World country. Glut, waste, and overweight-through-poverty have become the norm. We now have a two-tier system for everything, and the space between the tiers gets wider and wider.

It makes me understand why we have so many lost kids who, like the Lost Boys in Peter Pan never want to grow up. What are they growing up to? The saddest thing, and maybe Dubya’s most revolting legacy is that stupidity has become “cool.” The deadend street becomes the only street to play on, and any feeling other than numbness exploding into rage and anger is out of the question. In fact, most kids cannot even find the words to put it into a question. So we now have violent kids who are ennacting wartime crimes, here, in this country. I guess that has become the ultimate video game made real.


Gay Agism: The 800 Pound Gorilla in the Room

April 17, 2007

Angel Lust, An Erotic Novel of Time Travel, by Perry BrassAging and Agism, the 800-Lb Gorilla in the Room

Last week, in response to a page on my website ( about the odious Ann Coulter, one of my readers, John, sent me this note. I thought it was so well-put that I want to share it with you. I hope you’ll find something in it that resonates, and you’ll continue this conversation about something all of us are doing, one way or another—living, and getting older.

“Did I tell you your definition of faggot was brilliant, vis-a-vis your application of the word to Coulter? It was bubbling just below the surface with me like a swarm of angry bees but I couldn’t bring it up and spit it out like you did. I am well aware of the “faggot” you defined from our youth, the menacing queer man among us who seemed so angry at his own, perhaps it was a form of internalized self-loathing which we’re come to hear so much about. Most of all I remember my own reaction to these men. Craving masculine warmth and acceptance, these men with their sharp tongues, exaggerated feminine mannerisms, and shrill voices terrified me in the extreme. This was a case of what Matt Sanchez was possibly referring to of gay men eating their own. Their constant put-downs of other gay men, their unkindness, their clever jokes at the expense of others, all these things drove me away from the gay community of the 60’s.

“Looking at that community now, with its affection bears, healthy buffed bodies, and open admiration and appreciation for every part of the male physiognomy and anatomy, I long to be a part of it but time has passed me by.

“Which brings us to another problem we face as older gays, the derision and rejection of the younger ones. It matters not what we bring to the table, it isn’t good enough. Youth is all that matters. Meanwhile, instead of being called faggots we are now being derisively labeled “trolls” and often to gales of laughter. Like we’re the most poisonous thing on the planet. I notice Larry Kramer has just spoken out for more active participation in the gay world, but I don’t see it happening with the rift between the older and the younger males. Yes, young men are beautiful, and yes, older men are fading away, but we still need one another.”

I thought John’s feelings are open, beautiful, and applicable to us all. Age has been a problem and issue in gay life since the Greeks, who saw, basically, only the beauty of young men and boys. They wrote reams of poetry about pretty young things, and the older men who adored them, and wished only not to be spurned by them. In many ways, for ages gay men have been frozen into a period that only admits and recognizes youth—however, the rest of America, via Madison Avenue, has caught up to us: the whole country is now basically frozen this way. And so, in a strange, paradoxical way, a lot of queer men are, again, way ahead of the curve: we are actually aging well, and starting to enjoy aging in a way that seemed impossible 30 or 40 years ago, when the standard song was “Nobody wants you when you’re old and gay!”

I’m not saying that queer guys have made a 180 degree turnaround, and we now revere age, wrinkles, and sagging bodies like the gold standards of life, but we are starting to realize that we can get old, that older men have a pleasurefulness and beauty you can feel and appreciate—and that all desirable company is not in the 18-27 year old range. But as a writer, I still feel the pangs of feeling out of step, and the rejections that come with it. My books are not for queer kiddies who think that Madonna invented “gay culture”—maybe some aspects of guy cultuPerry Brass in the thinking man’s bathre, but she never invented gay culture. Neither did Aaron or Torie Spelling for that matter. The difficult thing now is not that getting older is getting harder—it really isn’t; it’s that the depth that comes from getting older is less and less a part of the valued substance of this country. It is hard to get deeper and wiser, two aspects of aging that allow you to enjoy life so much. And without that, getting older becomes only a handicap, a “challenge,” with few rewards at the end.