Tuesday, January 01, 2008
Heterosexual White Guy Journalists Association
There’s a need out there and I have undertaken to fill it. It’s my great pleasure to announce the formation of the Heterosexual White Guy Journalists Association, or HWGJA (hah-wug-jah). Minorities have taken steps to improve the way they’re portrayed in media and now it’s our turn to burnish our image, which has been getting trashed for many years now.
There’s the Association for Women Journalists on whose web site it says: “AWJ promotes the fair treatment of women in the media and the promotion of women in the newsroom through a scholarship program, career grants, networking, advocacy, career seminars . . .”
Then there’s the National Lesbian and Gay Journalists Association which proclaims: “NLGJA is an organization of journalists, media professionals, educators and students that works within the news industry to foster fair and accurate coverage of LGBT issues.” In case you’re not hip to what LGBT means, it’s Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender. That last is a new word for what we use to call a transvestite or a cross-dresser, or it could mean someone whose gone even further and had plastic surgery to either remove a penis or implant a facsimile. The latter procedure is what Rush Limbaugh calls an “adadictomy.”
There’s the National Association of Black Journalists, the National Association of Hispanic Journalists, the Native American Journalists Association, and - get this - both the Asian American Journalists Association and the South Asian Journalists Association. What’s up with that? Why is there a need for two Asian Journalists Associations? Can’t the AAJA just have a department like the South Asian Subcommittee or something like that? As founder and president of HWGJA, I intend to form special departments like the Republican Bureau (wouldn’t be any need for a Democrat bureau - see explanation below), the Jock Committee, the Redneck Panel, and the Unmedicated ADHD Task Force. I don’t know if the task force will ever get anything accomplished, but they’ll certainly be active.
As HWGJA president, I intend to apply for membership in the National Association of Multcultural Media Executives, or NAMME (nah-mee). I know what you’re thinking: heterosexual white guys are in the majority, right? Well, if NAAME refuses me membership I intend to sue, just as soon as HWGJA gets a legal department. I’ve already done the research into our minority status and my conclusion is that heterosexual white guys are definitely outnumbered in the profession. Take television journalism, for instance. You’ll have a hard time convincing me that Matt Lauer is exclusively heterosexual. No HWG gets excited about the latest designs in wedding dresses like Matt does. And when he’s not there, David Gregory fills in. Ever see Mr. Gregory sashaying to music with Meredith and Al outside the studio in New York City? At best, Lauer and Gregory are metrosexuals. They’ve had so much makeup applied to them so often, something’s happened to them. Males on other networks seem little better. We HWGs are definitely in the minority.
White metrosexual journalists covering Washington, DC are overwhelmingly Democrats and that party has become anathema to HWGs. That wasn’t always true, but HWGs have been leaving the Democrat Party for about thirty years now and I don’t think there are any left. Thomas Edsall at The Huffington Post organized a forum recently, asking: “Should the Dems love white guys or dump them?” Edsall was referring to HWGs of course because homosexual men have always been strong Democrats. Various non-HWGs weighed in with comments and the consensus was: “Who needs them? They’re a shrinking demographic anyway, so let them go.” That would explain why the party’s three leading candidates for president are: a woman - Hillary Clinton, a black man - Barack Obama, and a white guy of questionable sexual preference - John Edwards.
All these advocacy groups object when our mass media depict members unfavorably, whether they be black, Hispanic, homosexual, female, Asian, Muslim Arab, or whomever. Amos and Andy is out. So are Brer Rabbit, Little Black Sambo, and Speedy Gonzalez’s cartoon-character sidekick Slowpoke Rodrigues. Public school textbook publishers, for example, can only use images that depict minorities as the advocacy groups insist. Asians cannot be shown in laundries or as academics. Women cannot be portrayed as nurses or receptionists or caring for children. Blacks can’t be shown in an urban environment. All images must be counter to stereotype, even if the stereotype is accurate and substitute images distort reality.
Heterosexual white guys are the only ones left to ridicule or poke fun at, so we’re depicted as heartless oppressors of everyone else in the history textbooks our children read. We’re shown as selfish and stupid on television - like Homer Simpson or Family Guy for example. Behaving as normal boys in the typical public school classroom, we’re diagnosed with ADHD and force-fed amphetamines. At the other end of things, our life expectancy is shorter than that of women. In between our childhood and our death, we’re expected to keep everything running while all the other minority groups whine about how cruel and heartless we are.
My goal for the HWGJA, however, is not to complain about our circumstances the way the other groups whine about theirs. Heck no. Homer Simpson is funny. So is Family Guy. They wouldn’t be funny unless there were some basis in reality for their antics. My goal instead is to maintain a healthy, heterosexual-white-guy sense of humor and thereby provide a contrast to those other groups who desperately need to lighten up. We HWGs have to laugh at them every time people from those hyper-PC advocacy groups feign outrage and indignation at their lot in life and blame us. It’s the only way we're going to stay sane until they all grow up - if they ever do.