“I am not Gay:” What Morrisey’s Recent Declarations Say About Us.

Most of the press information I find about Morrisey’s new book released in October, is on his declaration about not being gay. This is not new given that questions about Morrisey’s sexuality, celibacy, bisexuality etc. have prevailed for the past decade of media information. My question: Why this need to explain his sexuality to confused audiences or media reps who expect other humans to fit an either/or box? What does this say about us?

Last month, Rolling Stone published here that Morrisey felt compelled to explain his sexuality after sharing in his autobiography memories about his first relationship with a man. For those still intrigued with his sexual orientation after reading almost 500 pages, he issued a statement after the release of his book: “Unfortunately, I am not homosexual,” he declared. “In technical fact, I am humasexual. I am attracted to humans. But, of course … not many.”

What I find interesting here is not his sexual ambiguity, which I’ve never had a problem with, but rather his effort to keep explaining himself to hetero-normative audiences who may have internalized strict criteria about what gay and straight means.

The reason why most of us who loved The Smiths loved them so much, was because the singer, the lyrics, the aesthetic of this group did not perform strict heterosexuality, it went against male vs. female stereotypes opening up more fluid and ambigious ways to experience relationships.  Look at his song “Girl Afraid” which could be interpreted from the perspective of a man who cannot perform masculinity the way it is usually expected by (strictly straight?) woman. These are the sort of lyrics that represent a different type of dynamic between people.

If Morrisey does not fit into hegemonic stereotypes of what masculinity or straightness is, as most of us already know, what are the underlying assumptions that make him feel the need to explain himself again and again, declaring he is not homosexual, but not heterosexual either to mainstream audiences? Why is the media so centered on this one issue after his autobiography came out?

I’ll end with a tentative response from “Such little thing makes such a big difference:”

Leave me alone – I was only singing
Leave me alone because
I was only singing
Leave me alone – I was only singing
Leave me alone
You have just proved (again)
Most people keep their brains
between their legs

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