We came across this article by Andy Horwitz (pictured, spreading the love) over at Nerve, the hornball online magazine. In it, Horwitz takes aim at a New York Times article by Katy Butler in which she dissects the so-called Brokeback marriage trend: that is, when gay men marry straight women in an attempt to cover up their sexuality.
Horwitz takes offense at Butler’s depiction as men as villains. He writes:
The article revolves around a Lifetime Channel scenario, in which all women are victims of men – either consciously conniving men or men too weak or cowardly to know themselves.
It is also fundamentally sexist. You would never see such a story written about men who marry lesbians and the havoc that wreaks on their sense of masculinity, safety, commitment and trust.
Such articles enforce rigid codes of conventional American masculinity, envisioning non-traditional masculinity as a threat or trick.
While this may be true, Horwitz goes on to say:
Of course, women’s sexual freedom is curtailed by the same impulse: it’s simply not taken seriously – no real straight man would have a problem with a lesbian wife, he’d just invite the girlfriend over for a three-way!
Maybe we’re just not following him, but wasn’t he just railing against the perpetuation of socio-sexual stereotypes? Disparities aside, it’s a pretty interesting article, particulary when he offers alternative conceptions of marriage.