Yes, it’s Dr. Michael Brown — again:
During her interaction with California Sen. Diane Feinstein Tuesday, Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett used the forbidden term “sexual preference” with reference to LGBT sexuality. Not only did this cause an instant internet firestorm, but it apparently led to an instant adjustment in a major online dictionary. The term is now officially “offensive” when used in the sense of “orientation.”
Whether or not “sexual preference” is offensive depends, in part, upon who is using the term. Religious conservatives intentionally replace sexual orientation with sexual preference to convey the idea that homosexuality is a choice.
We cannot know for sure. However, I would have to guess that Amy Coney Barrett was regurgitating a phrase common in her orbit. According to ultra-conservative Catholics, there are no gay people. Rather, there are people who, from time to time, experience “same-sex attraction;” a condition that can be cured with prayer.
Brown is basing his theory on tweets from figures on the religious right including:
As recently as last month, Webster’s Dictionary included a definition of “preference” as “orientation” or “sexual preference.” TODAY they changed it and added the word “offensive.”
Insane – I just checked through Wayback Machine and it’s real.
— Steve Krakauer (@SteveKrak) October 14, 2020
Mr. Krakauer is not being truthful.
- Yes, Webster’s dictionary does include the fact that many people consider the use of sexual preference offensive.
- However, archive.org offers only one snapshot dated October 14. There are no other snapshots available going back to 1997. Therefore, while the definition probably changed in October, there is no source for comparison. There is no way — from archive.org — to know what that change consisted of.
- Krakauer’s tweet is dated October 13 which is prior to the snapshot.
- Yes, I am questioning the authenticity of Krakauer’s screen capture.
Krakauer relied on The Federalist’s house faggot, Chad Felix Greeene who tweeted a link to a post by Jordan Davidson. However, Davidson relied on Krakauer.
Much has been made of the fact that others have used the term, including Joe Biden. As I said, its offensiveness depends upon who is using the term.
I pressed, I suspect that Barrett would say something to the effect that she is not a scientist but that homosexual sex is a choice.
Let’s say that I am wrong. Suppose that Webster’s did change their definition because of the reaction to Amy Coney Barrett’s response to a question from Dianne Feinstein.
This is nothing new, contrary to what Brown suggests. More than three years ago, I complained to HBO about Bryant Gumbel’s use of the term on Real Sports.
As a result of my conversation with senior executives HBO took the matter very seriously and consulted with GLAAD. In point of fact we do find it offensive even when not used pejoratively. That should be sufficient. Do not use the term and don’t excuse it Michael Brown.