Even though their audience consists mainly of aging but not maturing males, comic book superheroes have a way of reflecting cultural shifts. News broke last week that on very short notice DC Comics had cancelled Batwoman’s imminent nuptials to an NYPD policewoman – a much anticipated lesbian first in the world of publishing for the illiterate. The two DC writers who had seen her through her engagement both quit in anger.
So is DC Comics now renouncing the gay agenda? Not at all. DC says it made the call because superheroes and heroines are supposed to live tortured and lonely personal lives, not happy and contented ones. Not that lesbian relationships are a bed of roses, but most people don’t know that. But hold on – in 1996, after half a century, didn’t DC finally let Superman marry Lois Lane? Why the hetero-normative double standard? Who knows?
Both DC and its arch-nemesis Marvel comics had been broadly hinting for many years that several of their heroes were closet sodomites, and in the mid-1990s, as the gay agenda crested, they began coming out. Batwoman is the best known.
Meanwhile on the music front
This summer saw Illinois pop-singer heart throb Steve Grand, 23, declare himself out, with two music videos in which he cuddles and smooches other young men. Both show lots of wholesome teen partiers on the beach and around a camp fire. Grand seems to have dropped for now the homo-erotic naked muscle shots he modelled for gay magazines, which are all over the Internet.
Despite his instant fame, he is a big disappointment to the serious, most intolerant rainbow spokesmen. They scoff at him. Until he quit in August, pleading career pressures, he remained the very popular music director at St. Patrick’s Catholic Church in Lemont, IL. He intends to remain a churchgoing Catholic and refuses to badmouth the conversion therapy his father enrolled him in for five years. It didn’t change him, says Grand, but he liked and respected the psychologist, and found him genuinely compassionate, caring and encouraging. But Grand says he has concluded that God actually doesn’t mind sodomy, so there was no need to convert.
A very likable heretic
It seems clear that Steve Grand’s inclination was well known in the parish, and that he remained well liked – a not uncommon phenomenon. After his first video went viral he formally announced his condition to the congregation, apparently from the pulpit (certainly an unusual Sunday announcement), and as he went through his explanation he received three standing ovations. His priest, Father Kurt Boras, says he has heard no complaints against Grand since then, and has none himself. He simply quoted the pope: “Who am I to judge?”
What Chicago Archbishop Francis Cardinal George will do remains to be seen.
- “Steve Grand On Catholicism: The Side You Haven't Seen Of 'The First Openly Gay Male Country Star',” Huffington Post, Sep. 8, 2013