Monday, October 22, 2007

First Tinky Winky . . .

J.K. Rowling, author of the wildly popular Harry Potter books, recently announced that she'd always thought that Albus Dumbledore, the headmaster of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, is gay. (Click here to see how Publisher's Weekly reported this story, and here for a New York Times piece about how the blogosphere is responding.)

Some are saying that she should have been more explicit about it; others are calling it much ado about nothing. I, for one, am glad to know and glad that it was never more of an issue. (I'll happily admit to being a huge fan of the series!)

There are so many things that go into a person's identity and our sexual orientation--or "affectional preference"--is but one piece of it. Does my being a one-time french horn player make me unfit for military service, underserving of the same opportunities to rent or buy real estate, or unable to make a life-long commitment? Does my being a lover of comic books make me a poor choice to be a preacher? (There are impressionable youngsters around, you know.)

I know I'm being silly. One's sexual orienation is considerably more important an element of a person's identity than whether or not one plays an instrument or follows the exploits of the Batman. Still, it is only one element, no matter how vigorously some try to make it the defining element.

I am glad to know that Dumbledore is gay. It's one more think I know about this "person" I've come to admire. And I'm glad that I didn't know before this, because there was absolutely no way in which his sexual orientation played any part in the story.

As is so often the case.

In Gassho,

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