Brokeback Nation

We went to see Brokeback Mountain last weekend. It was … all the superlatives that have been said about it: beautiful, moving, heartbreaking, terrific performances, lived up to the hype, etc. etc. etc.

I was a trifle detached about it, however, I have to admit. See, I’m really sick of the American macho man who has to hide for 30 years because of who he really is thing (see Knotty Boy’s critique below).

Tired of living in a society where everyone watches this movie, says, ‘Isn’t that sad?’ and life just goes on.

Bored with ignorant ‘real cowboys’ being interviewed on CNN about this movie and snortin’ out, ‘Ain’t no sucha thang as a gay cowboy out here!’ when of course there are.

Nauseated that Matthew Shephard is still dead and James Dobson and Pope Been-a-Nazi XVI are still alive and exercising such poisonous control over millions of minds.

More than a little angry that Jack’s plan for himself and the love of his life to go off and live on a ranch together peacefully for 30 years is nigh-on impossible in a country that prides itself on freedom, liberty and equal justice for all.

Part of my detachment stems from growing up around the type of atmosphere portrayed in the movie. I know one real-life person in Oklahoma who right now has lived the same kind of lie for the last 30 years that Jack Twist lived in the story, longing for a man, stuck in a heterosexual relationship that was foisted on him by society in the 70s by people like his own siblings, who once famously admitted to wishing they had drowned him when he was a child because they suspected he was gay.

I guess, in other words, the movie hits me too close to home. I, thanks to the accident of being born in 1963 and not being 20 years old in 1963, was able to escape. So many have not and do not.

Awesome movie. Horrible reality.