Lucas Lascivious

Foe of moderation, champion of excess

Month: September, 2016

Enough of the “Enoughs” with Hillary

2701a6d0-clinton-4x3

All of her career, Hillary’s been accused of not being “enough” to varying degrees without people recognizing what it means to be “enough”:

She’s not trustworthy “enough.”
Most people I know can barely cope with a single derogatory tweet. Try to imagine being criticized by millions of people over the course of 40 years. You’d be guarded, too.

She doesn’t smile “enough.”
The fact that she doesn’t smile as often as people would like is an incredibly sexist sentiment, and even when she does show that she has a sense of humor by smiling, her laugh is criticized and labeled inauthentic, so it’s a lose-lose. What’s more, if she seemed joyous while talking about gender inequality, terrorism, pervasive racism, or any other legitimate political issue, that would concern me.

She’s not attractive “enough.”
Sarah Palin is proof that attractiveness ≠ intelligence. Personally, as someone who is an American that has to deal with the ramifications of the people who are elected, I could not care less if a female politician is a little too butch for your taste.

She doesn’t care “enough” about minorities.
There’s a reason minorities overwhelmingly support her: as far back as her husband’s presidential tenure, she was fastidiously working to ensure minorities were begotten the same luxuries as white people. Not to mention, she was crucial in raising minority salaries by more than 25 percent, which is too little an improvement, but progress nonetheless.

In conclusion, don’t be an idiot.

Advertisements

Let Me Start by Saying…

black-white-kiss-wallpapers-1920x1200

Recently, I was labeled a racist by someone who I’ve been friends with for the past 15 years. Whereas I don’t consider myself a racist, it did make me wonder if my pacifistic egalitarianism has actually been a farce. After all, even though I’m a gay person, I’m still Caucasian and male, and, though I believe in the potential and equality of all human beings, the fact remains that, even as a person attracted to people of the same sex, I still have two advantageous, biological traits in a nation wrought with political and social sexism and racism working in my favor.

As much as I like to lean on my liberal credentials, the reality is I’ll never know from a personal standpoint what it’s like to be a gender or racial minority. What I can offer, however, is my own experiences as an LGBT minority as an attempt at understanding the plight of fellow minorities.

I’m not going to pretend to understand what it’s like to have your reproductive rights restricted, because, even though I’ve gone with female friends to have everything from their first birth control administered to having abortions, I have never personally had to face that reality, because I had the luxury of being born with a penis. The reality is you can’t simultaneously restrict women’s access to birth control while slut-shaming them for having abortions; having an abortion doesn’t mean a woman is somehow dishabille and/or a terrible human being, it means they’re mature enough to recognize they’re not presently responsible enough to properly offer the parental support every child deserves.

Similarly, I can never know what it’s like to be born a racial minority in a nation that, for all self-proclaimed patriots’ protests about being a country that was built upon the backs of underdogs where everyone should feel welcome, still openly discriminates against anyone who doesn’t share their exact melanin levels.

So, please, if ever you feel I’m “mansplaining” or being “racist,” point it out to me. My ego isn’t one that’s so fragile that I’m immune to expanding it. I’ve said it many times before, but without expanding your mind, there can never be progress, and I don’t want to be a person who ever stints potential social and intellectual advancement. This isn’t a white man’s plea to excuse my own ignorance; rather, it’s a white man’s plea to highlight when I’m unknowingly using my whiteness as a source of privilege to quell the likelihood my white privilege will present itself in the future.

Opera: the Underestimated Faction of Music

speak-pxufretjmfneqzgqfybijtkmsfgljwnz-v2

As a disclaimer, I’m aware this entire article is going to make me sound like a pretentious douchebag, but just hear me out.

As a child growing up in the rural South, I had very little exposure to the arts and saw opera as being comprised of farce-ridden, Falstaff-esque characters who shouted random words; I genuinely didn’t understand the appeal. It wasn’t until I took a college preparatory class in high school that required me to write a 10-page paper on Beethoven that I truly appreciated opera as an immaculate craft. That paper required me to study Beethoven in-depth, which led me to discover FidelioFidelio may have been his only opera, but it served as a kairotic moment for me.

From there, I dove into the pool of generic classical composers (Handel, Verdi, Rachmaninoff, etc.) and found that—holy shit!—this was an untapped musical genus I’d been missing out on.

Superficially, it was the amazing voices that drew me toward the field of opera, because the more I listened and learned, the more I realized that opera requires incredible vocal skills and the ability to subsequently emote. That’s a challenge.

The major complaints I hear from others about opera is that (a) it all sounds like screaming, (b) a majority of operas are performed in languages they don’t understand, and (c) operas are boring.

I get it. Opera isn’t for everyone. But, it only sounds like “screaming” to philistine eardrums. As for the other two criticisms: I’m not fluent in Russian, but can comprehend what someone like Galina Vishnevskaya is singing about in Iolanta. That’s how opera works: if a performer is good, you don’t need linguistic fluency, and that’s why I love opera.

Opera is truly a universal language.