Should People Sue If They're Called Gay?

A traditional move on the part of blustery male celebrities is to sue if a publication suggests they're gay, while adding "Not that I have anything against gays, mind you." This kind of thing always grosses me out because it's so wussy and contradictory, whereas a way cooler approach would be to smilingly say, "No, I'm not gay, but it's perfectly OK if you think I am." Or even better would be to say nothing at all. (Though the best of all would be a casual, "Yep, I'm gay." Dream on.)

Well, this discomfort-making topic has come up again because the cultural landscape has changed in a way that makes it seem even less slanderous to call someone gay than in the past. In fact, whenever I out someone, I think they should send me roses and a box of Ding Dongs. A recent Slate piece by Gabriel Arana seemed to take my side of the issue, but then came a dissenting opinion by the Miami Herald's Edward Wasserman, who feels foofy falsehoods should be sued upon because they're calling the star a liar and potentially upsetting his relationships.

While they're battling it out, let me just put it out there that Arana really knows what he's talking about because he's definitely a gay. Got that? He knows this kind of thing inside out because he's totally queer! (Actually, I have no idea if he is, but I know he's not gonna sue!)


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