Post Written By: Anti Intellect. The Views and opinions of the post are explicitly Anti Intellect’s
What is it about Love & Hip Hop Atlanta that makes the cast so hellbent on using homosexuality an insult? The past few months have seen at least five members of the cast using the possibility that another cast member might be gay to attack and insult them. This form of homophobia is quite common in our society that all too often treats being gay as something negative, something to be ashamed of, and something that is degrading.
Twitter has most often been the location where these homophobic arguments among the members of the cast have played out. Earlier this year, Mimi and Benzino got into an argument on Twitter which saw them both using the prospect of the other being gay to attack and insult one another. Mimi threw out that Benzino is “suppose to be a heterosexual” and that they should “talk about the dicks in his ass.” Benzino accused Mimi of having had a threesome with another woman, and having performed oral sex with another woman. Both of the are examples of straight people using the specter of homosexuality as something to attack and/or insult another person with. The idea being that not being straight is something one needs to be ashamed of.
Joseline, another member of the cast, has had her fair share of Twitter arguing that involved homosexuality being used to insult a fellow member of the cast. Joseline, herself the target of homophobic and transphobic attacks, took to her Twitter to call out fellow member of the cast, and sometimes boyfriend, Stevie J. During the October exchange, Joseline says, “Don’t get mad cause I don’t want your gay ass no more, your faggot ass undercover.” She goes on to say, “Dudes get mad when you find out they faggots.” Joseline uses outright homophobic language, and the prospect of Stevie being gay, to attack him during their argument. Joseline would later claim that she wasn’t talking about her Stevie J.
The most recent example of reality “stars” using gay as an insult involved K. Michelle and fellow member of the cast Rasheeda’s husband Kirk Frost. Frost repeatedly implies that K. Michelle is a lesbian in an attempt to attack her. Kirk attacks K. Michelle saying, “You’ve had so many relationships with girls in ATL you gotta move. I’m waiting for you to be real, let it be known you like women.” On the surface, these comments may not look homophobic, but as far as we know, K. Michelle identifies as a straight woman. Further, Kirk “outing” K. Michelle is, itself, a form of homophobia often used to shame and attack others. K. Michelle uses male femininity to attack Kirk and imply that he, himself, is not straight. She says, “You are a grown man walking around with four earrings in your ear.” The exchange between K. Michelle and Kirk takes on a decidedly sexist and misogynistic nature along with the fact that it is homophobic. Kirk calls K. Michelle a “tramp”, a label often used to attack women for not fitting a sexist notion of womanhood. And K. Michelle’s questioning Kirk’s sexual orientation–because he has multiple earrings in his ear and argues with women–relies on sexist notions of what is appropriate for men and women.
[K. Michelle and Kirk Frost Read Each Other For Filth On Twitter. Fake a$$, Molestation, Gay, Piss & MORE]
The homophobia, sexism, and misogyny witnessed during the arguments these arguments are by no means unique to VH1, Black people, or reality TV. We live in a culture that, unfortunately, continues to see homosexuality as shaming, negative, and insulting despite the historic strides that are being made in the LGBT rights movement. Further, sexism notions of men’s and women’s behaviors and choices continues to be taught and condoned in the wider culture.
As a proud openly gay man, I want Mimi, Benzino, Joseline, K. Michelle, and Kirk to know that my sexual orientation it not an insult. I suggest straight people find another way to attack each other when they argue. There is nothing wrong with being gay.
Anti-Intellect is a DC-based social media activist and essayist.