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[personal profile] ultaviolet730
So, it's been ages since I've posted on my LJ. I've been stuck on Brokeback Mountain. Most of my f-list are not Brokebackers, so this diatribe will be meaningless to you. Feel free to ignore or tell me to get a life. But man, I need to get this out.

I've spent most of my online time over the past year and a half on the Dave Cullen forums, a place where BBM fans and Jake/Heath fans gather to gush and overanalyze the movie/short story and track Jake's every move through the scary amount of pap photos of him that are available. I kid - we didn't really track him. Ahem, moving on...

The main Jake-worshiping thread, called Eyelashes, was a place where speculation about Jake's sexuality was allowed, and where people posted pics to drool over. You were supposed to be able to talk about Jake and any object of his or your desire.

So now Jake is in a public relationship with, gasp, a woman*! And he gave a recent interview in which he is quoted as saying, essentially, that he's not gay and never has been.

The delicate flowers on the DC forum who don't like to think of Jake touching any icky girl parts have somehow conned the mods into actually creating a whole separate thread where pics of Reese and talk about Reese is confined. Now on Eyelashes, you can talk about and post pics of Jake and anyone else. Except Reese.

Funnily enough, on the new thread, you can also post pics of and talk about Jake and anyone else. So it's an ideal world for the fragile flowers - on Lashes, Reese is persona non posta. And on the new thread, you can drown out any talk about or pictures of Reese with talk about and pictures of all the other people you can also talk about and post pictures of on Lashes.

And if that isn't enough sustenance for your Reese-ripping soul, you can take a hop over to the photo-captioning thread, where a flood of hateful, misogynistic anti-Reese posts and bitter "Jake's a lying, bearding fool" posts will keep you busy.

After giving us a heart-breaking portrayal of a gay man in BBM, over the past two years, Jake has unfailingly praised the story and film, his fellow actors, the production team and BBM fans. He just recently described the phenomenon this way: "'It's been extraordinary,'' Gyllenhaal says of life post-Brokeback. ''It has taken me to a different place in my career. Nothing but wonderful, positive things have come out of that experience.''

Unlike Heath, Jake has not tried to distance himself from BBM. He received an HRC award, for which he taped a moving acceptance speech. He alone attended the MTV Awards and put up with all the smirking and sneering "jokes" in order to accept the "Best Kiss" trophy, which he characterized as a "big deal." He attended the GLAAD awards in LA to present an award to Jennifer Aniston.

Should he get extra credit for doing things that are right? I'm not saying that. It's not like he's devoted his life to the good deed of advancing the gay cause. But does Jake really deserve the scorn, the contempt, the derision, the suspicion, the condemnation that people are heaping upon him just because he decided to out himself as a hetero? I'm not talking about the idiots on the net who can't distinguish Jake from the character he played or who live to scream "GAY!" whenever his name is mentioned.

I'm talking about Jake's alleged fans. Was the message of BBM that tolerance goes only one way? Is misogyny suddenly cool? Is it okay to subject Jake to this pressure and this level of scrutiny because gay people have suffered the same for so long? If he really is gay, is it his obligation to come out and fulfill the requirements other people impose on him? He played a role in a film that affected a lot of people. But can't we let him move on?

I don't know why so many people are so invested in Jake's sexuality. All I know is that a place I used to love, my Jake home on the internet, is a cold, unwelcoming place now.

And despite all that, I miss it :(

So now that I have to leave that behind me, you'll see me here, posting Jake tidbits most of you won't care about. But I promise to try to remember how to discuss other topics!

*For the record, Reese Witherspoon is not anyone I pictured as Jake's paramour. I do believe that their relationship is real, and I like to see pics of Jake in love. But this is not my Jake-couple dream come true.
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ultaviolet730

January 2009

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