Los Angeles Times‘ Tom O’Neil ought to know better. The entertainment reporter – whose column revolves around award ceremonies of various ilks – recently admonished GLAAD for not including The Kite Runner in it’s media awards. And gay activists aren’t happy. Find out why, after the jump…
For those of you who scoff at so-called spoilers, you should stop reading now. Those of you who can handle a bit of fictional truth should know that The Kite Runner – both the book and the movie – contain a young character who rapes another boy. That same character grows into a pedophile. Apparently O’Neil considers these acts of violation to be of the homosexual variety. Who knew!?
O’Neil’s column begins by wondering why GLAAD chose movies that haven’t been honored elsewhere, for example, Stardust. Apparently the Oscars and Golden Globes should dictate GLAAD’s choices. That’s a queer state of mind considering that GLAAD highlights films with positive gay representation, not films that have been celebrated elsewhere. Perhaps it’s this rationale that led O’Neil to write this:
One great film with a gay subtext got overlooked by other awards this derby season and deserved to be noted here, but wasn’t: The Kite Runner, which contains a controversial boy-rape scene. Why did GLAAD wimp out?
It seems to us that GLAAD didn’t wimp out at all. The Kite Runner‘s violent sexuality has nothing to do with straight or gay orientation, but, rather, a character who gets off on dominating the vulnerable and powerless, neither of which are endemic to any one social group. Box Turtle Bulletin agrees: “There is nothing whatsoever that suggests that this character is attracted to adult males, nor would such linkage be admirable and deserving of recognition.”
Rape remains a social blight that cuts through all sexualities, races, economic classes, etc, etc. Thus, GLAAD’s quite right in snubbing The Kite Runner, however well received it may have been elsewhere.