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The Rapp on Kevin Spacey - My Gay Toronto - Bellini's 8 1/2

The Rapp on Kevin Spacey
1 November 2017.

The actor Anthony Rapp has come forward to accuse two-time Academy Award-winning actor Kevin Spacey of coming on to him when he was 14 years old. The details of the incident are thus. Spacey and Rapp were both in Broadway plays at the time. Spacey invited Rapp to a house party, which he attended alone. Not knowing anyone there, Rapp went up to the bedroom to watch TV. Later that night, a drunken Spacey, 26 years-old at the time, came into the room, picked up Rapp like a bride, lay him on the bed, and got on top of him. A traumatized Rapp squiggled out from underneath the big lug and ran.

Spacey's reaction was to issue a statement in which he comes out as a gay man after 30 years of hemming and hawing. He also said he doesn't remember the incident. Did he realize that Rapp was so very young? (I have included photos of both men from around the time of the incident, for proper perspective.)

Aside from ruining House of Cards for me, what purpose does Anthony Rapp's #metoo serve? (The Advocate had the story in 2001, but curiously chose to redact Spacey's name in the quote.) Typically, most of the online outrage came from those women fervent in their lust to see male sexuality euthanized. Most are content to brand Spacey a pedophile, although strictly speaking he would actually be an ephebophile. Most of them do not understand how gay men behave. Why would they? They don't have cocks.

Most gay men have encountered gropers. The very reason we invented back rooms was so that we could run around groping each other. It's how we speak to each other. I recall the uncle of a guy I thought I was dating feeling up my crotch at a restaurant and then asking me to come live with him in Bangkok. He was hideous, but I was thrilled. He was basically telling me that I was pretty enough to be his house boy! Am I ruined from the encounter? No, because I'm made of stronger stuff than that, and to be fair, I was not 14 at the time. I was 28. Would I have been horrified had it happened to me at 14? Yes, absolutely. I was curious about carnality, but certainly not ready to deal with it, and I have to assume that teenage Anthony Rapp was not, either. But can we stop referring to him as a child? He was starring in a Broadway play, for fuck's sake, not sitting in a sandbox.

The public shaming of Spacey is on! Stripped of an Emmy honour! Dumped by his network! And worse, Defamer has asked readers to provide them with their very own Kevin Spacey stories. Like the time he grabbed a waiter's ass, or the time he asked a crew member to come to his trailer after the shoot. How dare he come on to guys! What a pig! Thanks, Defamer, for exposing behaviour that could only shock the most disingenuous prig. 

I worry that we are moving into a world where it is no longer possible to touch someone without consent. This is great for women. Not so great for gay men, who love to fondle each other, but we do so with a sophisticated system in place. We've had to negotiate the subtle difference between guys who would only ever be friends ('sisters' in old parlance) or potential lovers. We have a choice to be friends or foes with our ex-lovers, as there is no avoiding bumping into them in bars. And we have to make a choice not to come on to 14 year-olds, no matter how cute.  

So now, the award-winning actor has been reduced to the status of 'chicken hawk,' although I suspect he's just more of a horny gay man. Again, straight people and women cannot understand gay lust, so they vilify it. All the worse for us. I really hope that Anthony Rapp will be the last gay celebrity to join the ranks of the fun new witch hunt that is #metoo, but somehow, I know he won't be. 


 

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