As we did our evening loop around Lake Underhill, our daily 1.75 mile check-in, a small plane bearing a banner flew over our heads to land in nearby Executive Airport. Because the banner had its back to us, it took me a second to realize what it bore.
Too bad I wasted the time and effort to decipher it:
“WARNING! GAY DAYS AT DISNEY!”
In this time of growing legislative and court victories that bring us ever close to the end of our sexual orientation Jim Crow in America, I’d almost forgotten that homophobia is still alive and kicking. Those who continue to be driven by The Hate that Can No Longer Comfortably Speak Its Name are a lot quieter these days.
Homophobia is increasingly recognized as a socially corrosive misanthropy in the same category with racism, sexism and the various xenophobia Americans have indulged over time. But those who hold to that fearful understanding clearly haven’t gone away. And, judging by the banner stunt, they clearly haven’t gotten over their issues surrounding sexual orientation (and I suspect in most cases, a wide range of other aspects involving sexuality in general).
So I would like to thank the Homophobe Defense League for their public service announcement this afternoon. We’d hate to think that people haunted by the same nightmares as these folks might go to an overpriced theme park devoted to story book fairies and evil queens and actually have to encounter (shudder) real live versions of the same. Clearly, the folks who paid to have this hateful banner towed across the skies above the park - crossing a self-proclaimed “City Beautiful” which has begun to match its natural beauty with acts of real beauty such as the domestic partner registry - have done all of their kith and kin a great service.
Of course, one wonders when would be a safe time for these folks to come back out of their bunkers and go to Disney. Who do they think will be leading the parades, running the rides and selling them their overpriced Mickey Mouse ears and Goofy Fries?
You know, folks, it’s one thing to visit Fantasyland. It’s something quite different to actually live there.
The Rev. Harry Scott Coverston, J.D., Ph.D.
Member, Florida Bar (inactive status)
Priest, Episcopal Church (Dio. of El Camino Real, CA)
Lecturer: Humanities, Religion, Philosophy of Law
University of Central Florida, Orlando
If the unexamined life is not worth living, surely an unexamined belief system, be it religious or political, is not worth holding.
Most things of value do not lend themselves to production in sound bytes.