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The Lesbian And The Libertarian

July 7, 2011

Recently I was witness to a rather heated conversation between a same sex oriented family friend and a politically active family member.  I won’t use their real names here (to protect the innocent?) but shall simply refer to them respectfully and respectively as the Lesbian and the Libertarian.

It started out innocently enough. The Libertarian was telling the story of the first date with his longtime girlfriend in which her lesbian co-worker acted as chaperone.  In relaying the story, he used the D-word (rhymes with bike) to describe said chaperone.

The Lesbian exclaimed, “You can’t say that word!”

To which the Libertarian defensively replied, “It’s a free country, I can say anything I want.” (Crickets chirping, pins dropping).

And she replied, “That’s like calling a black person the N-word!” (Who knew?)

This exchange occurred at a party in the presence of mixed company and I, for one, felt a tad uncomfortable.  And confused.  After all, the Lesbian and the Libertarian have known each other for years; they’ve spent major holidays together.  So why were both taking such offense to each other’s comments now?

They have since kissed and made up (so to speak), and remain friends.

Moral of the story?   Know your audience. And expand your vocabulary.

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One Comment leave one →
  1. July 7, 2011 3:59 pm

    I’d say is not the word but the USAGE of the word. The same way certain people use the “N word” and it’s okay, but it’s not okay for others because of the context (or tone, or because of who’s saying, or… etc.). I believe it gets too complicated at times, and like my mother-in-law says, if you have to say something, make it as nice as possible.

    -MTO

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