Whether are not you’ve had the Internet talk yet with your kids, chances are they are heading straight for it. Ask your 3-year-old with help with your iPad and maybe tap your 11-year-old on the back for some Tweeting pointers because modern children handle these mediums with ease. While grownups may use social media for the intent of work — like this grownup — kids just as seamlessly tweet as they would text. It’s all a part of the same conversation, online or offline. Which is why mothers and fathers should be somewhat concerned over the term “faggot” being tweeted 2.6 million times since July 5th.
The Atlantic reports that NoHomophobes.com, a website dedicated to raising awareness about casual homophobia, launched last week. The social media monitor counts “faggot,” “dyke,””no homo,” along with the oh so popular “so gay” on Twitter. And just so you can be privy to the context, the various tweets — as well as the profiles — are listed below in real time. While a quick observation does reveal the occasional tweeter critiquing such language, most of what you’ll find are goodies like these:
Just a small sampling from the friendly Twittersphere, where ladies in the public eye who carry perhaps not so popular views are called a “whore” faster than you can set a status update. Twitter is the equivalent of taking your ear to the Internet, and therefore hearing casual conversation. That’s what makes this kind of unchecked terminology so damaging, according to NoHomophobes:
This website is designed as a social mirror to show the prevalence of casual homophobia in our society. Words and phrases like ”faggot,” ”dyke,” ”no homo,” and ”so gay” are used casually in everyday language, despite promoting the continued alienation, isolation and ”” in some tragic cases ”” suicide of sexual and gender minority (LGBTQ) youth.
We no longer tolerate racist language, we’re getting better at dealing with sexist language, but sadly we’re still not actively addressing homophobic and transphobic language in our society.
That would be a social mirror and an alarming thermometer for parents whose kids are out there vacuously absorbing such discourse, and perhaps even repeating it.