I don't know how widespread the news of Matthew Shepards's murder was and I really don't care -- the News is not important -- if you didn't hear about the facts they aren't so important. I wrote these rantings when I read about him in the paper. I didn't write for him. I didn't write for you. I don't pretend to offer advice or solutions I just don't have. I wrote this for me; it's my anger. And anger is something that has to be known...

Look at the World that constructs incredibly fragile and exclusive identities of distorted importance. Stop and think how pathetic modern masculinity is to hinge so heavily on -- to crumble into rage at the mere thought of -- being mistaken for "less than male" -- no, I am not, by implied definition, the antithesis of masculinity, nor could I even be defined for that matter -- and fuck it all because masculinity is not a paradigm to be cherished and protected at all cost.

Imagine if we constructed everyone to beat the shit out of any person making unwanted sexual advances: "...Captain of the football team kicked the hell out of another cheerleader -- in his defense the young man cited the woman's unwanted advances, at this time no charges have been brought against the young athlete."

Where does violence like this come from? Ah, yes, marvelous men, oppressed in their utter "superiority." It was easier when the world wasn't mine, but this...this anger, this violence, it is my peer. I can't dismiss it as that of another generation or class, it is here and now -- it is living hate. Society's male fears a long overdue extinction that is, unfortunately, more perceived than true.

Yes, I know the guys who killed Matthew Shepard. I've never met them, but I'm positive I've seen them many times before, actually I think I grew up with them, or, maybe, most frighteningly, I recognize them in the vestigial structures of my own gender identity. It scares the hell out of me when the aperture of my anger brings them so fiercely into focus. I force myself to broaden my view at the risk of burning unwanted realities into my eyes: It's not them. No. But this is not a pardon. This is not a reprieve. This is a harbinger. They did not act alone, none of us do.

They were prodded with whispers and beaten with silence: always told who they were expected to be -- they weren't uneducated, they were you and I, middle class America: they weren't stupid, they weren't evil. They were just two of the nameless-faceless fragile and angry men processed by the archaic American double standard -- shoved onto a conveyer belt and scaffolded-plated-augmented-armored with the outdated masks and mirrors belonging to one of only two pre-constructed gender roles. They did only as they were expected.

It's time for expectations change.

kyle

<angry emails -- and all other's as well -- are appreciated and replied to: kylonian_X@hotmail.com>