Will "straight" as in "not gay" ever be considered a pejorative?

I’m thinking along the lines of how words like negro and midget used to be acceptable but now they are not.

If a non-gay person is straight; that would imply that a gay person is, um… crooked? or broken somehow?

I don’t mean to imply that I am offended by “straight” as it pertains to sexual orientation. I just wonder if sometime in the distant future if “straight” will become a pejorative.

Silly, I know.

Well, if being straight went out of fashion to that extent then I think the human race would go extinct.

It’s a bit harder 'cause not all the English speaking world uses “straight” to mean “non-gay.” My friends in NZ and others I know from Australia don’t use it. They will say “Mark these, straight people, as you put it,…”

To them “straight,” meant as in non-criminal or being honest (“I’ll be straight with you”)

It took into the 90s before my Kiwi and Aussie friends were using the term “gay” for homosexual.

I’m gay but I grew up in a household where “fag” meant cigarette, so I today I don’t view the world “fag” at negative at all. In fact I instantly associate “fag” with cigarette still.

I think as poltical correctness takes over it may fall into disuse. For intance, even now when I type “fat” I get an uncomfortable feeling, I never got before.


If, by “perjorative,” you mean “straight” will be used as a deeply offensive or insulting term, no, that will never happen.

But if “perjorative” can refer to lighthearted teasing or mockery… maybe. After all, even non-homophobes will use “gay” as a synonym for stupid or corny.

Now, over time, it’s become a staple of comedy that black men are smooth and cool, while white men are stiff and geeky. Over time, COULD gay men become perceived as much more chic and cool than straight gays, and could that lead to jokes about how uncool straight men are? Maybe.

I thought “breeders” was the pejorative term for “straight”.

To elaborate on my previous post… think of the TV show “Queer Eye for the Straight Guy.”

The whole idea behind the show is that gay men are chic, cool, hip, sophisticated and classy, while straight men are stupid, uncultured slobs.

COULD that become a popular stereotype and fodder for a lot of jokes in the future? It’s possible. MAYBE 20 years from now, people will shake their heads at a crude, beer-swilling jerk and groan, “He’s such a straight guy.”

I am a straight guy with a generally pro-gay mindset. One day I was driving with an openly-gay work associate and giving him directions to our destination. At one point, I said “okay, go straight here” - and he said “umm, could you not say ‘straight’? I would prefer it if you said ‘go forward’.”

I started laughing because I thought he was making a joke. He wasn’t. :rolleyes:

Look, I am all for sensitivity and appreciate it when folks help me understand when I have been ignorantly insensitive. But…

Will “straight” as in “not gay” ever be considered a pejorative?

It probably already is in some circles. In the 60’s, straight was used a pejorative among the hippie crowd when referring to establishment-minded folks. However, as the great majority of people are straight (i.e. not hippies, not gay, etc.), I don’t see it catching on as a perjorative with any widespread use.

I’ve certainly heard “breeders” used in the pejorative sense, both from queers and the child-free.
I’ve also heard “vanilla” used as a pejorative term for those not …sexually adventurous.

I used to know a gay fellow who would tap the breaks whenever anyone told him to go straight. I’m sure he was making a joke. Sorry your guy had no sense of humor.

When I was young and someone gave the driving instruction “go straight” we’d always laugh and say “forward, never straight!” Straight meant straight-laced, boringly conventional, anal, etc. So, I always thought straight was mildly pejorative but because it applies to maybe 96% of the population, it was almost impossible to be offended by it.

Breeder was a pejorative for straights too, but all my childless straight friends immediately started using it on their child-having friends too. These days I think of a breeder as someone who is perhaps too stupid to do much of anything but make babies.


“Straight” will never be pejorative as long as poker is popular.

Well, I could see some hypothetical future where we can tweak human sexuality and the majority of the population chooses to be bisexual, for the maximum number of opportunities. In that case, being straight could be considered a sign of backwardness or narrowness. Although homosexuality likely would be too, for the same reasons.


Incidentally, my gf and I never say “go straight at the light” or anything like that. Instead we say…

gaily forward.


Wow, that Chris Crocker guy is surreal. I thought he was going to bug the crap out of me but he’s kind of enthralling. Now I’m working my way through his other videos.

I know, his videos rock!


I think “straight” in its non-druggie sense is kinda pejorative.

I didn’t realize my RA had a male counterpart - she insisted that saying “straight” was prejudiced. She wasn’t amused when a few of us countered that it must then be as rude to us left-handed folk to use the word “right” to mean correct…

Sounds like the type of old fashioned ultra-feminist who insisted on using “herstory” and “ovular” instead of “history” and “seminar”.

Go forward! Move ahead!