by Ledge Slater, DP stud and intern
Tuesday, December 17th, 2013,
(NEW YORK) —A prominent gay rights organization is weighing in on one of the country’s most infamous holiday desserts this season. The Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) released an official press statement Monday afternoon, suggesting Americans not “hate upon” the commonly criticized fruitcake, which make their way around America (somehow) during the Christmas season, leaving people pondering how the moist, tangy cakes filled with low-grade fruit chunks that would turn a buzzard’s stomach ever made their way into their homes at all.
Indeed, “fruitcakes” are the holiday desserts Americans love to hate. But this year fruitcakes are finding an unlikely ally standing up for them. And if you don’t stand up with them too, watch out, you may be a "hater," a homophobe, a child serial killer...or worst of all: a bully!
Widely considered the holidays' most distasteful treats, GLAAD and some other gay rights groups are defending the pastries, condemning those who don’t like them as either “closet or blatant homophobes”.
“The term ‘fruits’, 'fruity', and ‘fruitcakes’ have been used for years in depicting and demeaning the LGBT community. Holiday fruitcakes, be them inanimate objects or not, are also depicted routinely as ‘weird’ or ‘gross’ and a ‘perversion’ among the pastry world,” said Seth Adam, GLAAD’s Senior Manager of Communications, Monday.
“To hate the actual fruitcake puts people on a dangerous footing to begin hating the more culturally known ‘fruitcakes’, i.e. gays, lesbians,” continued Adam. “The LGBT community has been hated enough in America over the years. Things have improved, undoubtedly, but we still have a long way to. We don’t want people to remain or begin hating gays and lesbians by proxy through hating the holiday season’s most rejected dessert which is named after a common slur for us.”
GLAAD’s call for holiday celebrants to begin enjoying fruitcake or else consider themselves homophobes could not be met with more cheer than the nation’s makers of fruitcakes. Ulla Winkler and Kathleen Flahive, owners of The Danish Pastry House in Watertown, Massachusetts say they are thrilled that the nation’s largest gay rights organization has come out not only defending fruitcakes, but to label all those who don’t like them “homophobic.”
“I personally like fruitcake and make some for customers every year, but hardly any ever sell,” said a thrilled Ulla Winkler to reporters, Monday. “But now I can say, ‘Hey, don’t be hatin’ –buy a fruitcake!’ …Heck, we already have a sign in our store window that says ‘Hello! If You Don’t Buy One of Our Fruitcakes, You’re a Damned Homophobe!’.”
More prominent pastry makers are expressing mixed feelings about people who dislike fruitcakes being equated to hating and/or discriminating against gays and lesbians. Said Allen Shiver, CEO of Flower Foods, which owns the well-known Tastykake company, “I…I…I just dunno anymore. The whole world’s going insane. Can we please not have every aspect of life somehow be connected with gays and homophobia and being ‘gay-friendly’ ...CAN PEOPLE JUST GRAB AHOLD OF THEMSELVES, just for once, for GOD’S SAKE!!”
But others see the urging by GLAAD to “buy and enjoy fruitcakes, or else...” much differently. Longtime gay rights activists Starla Brightongail of Berkeley, CA, held her head down in shame Tuesday morning, after hearing of GLAAD’s declaration on the once edible no–no of November and December. “I’ve never liked fruitcake and have always turned it down at the Winter Solstice parties I go to. And I’ve also fought for the GLBT community for years, too. Now I’m ashamed! How could I? I didn’t know I was offending the very people I’ve been fighting for so much; hurting my own friends.”
Worse yet is the effects of GLAAD’s “fruitcake ruling” on Thompson Lukshic and his daughter, Abigail. Lukshic, 53, the Assistant Dean of the Department of Alternative Lifestyle Studies at Rhode Island’s Brown University, said he’s always hosted at least eight holiday parties per year (one for Hindus, Buddhists, Wiccans, Atheists, Muslims, Agnostics, Rastafarians and Zoroastrians), not one of them ever having fruitcake at them. Now he is at a loss; the devastating news forcing the professor of 19-years to contemplate resigning.
Meanwhile, Lukshic’s daughter, who is a lesbian and has never liked fruitcake either feels even worse. Abigail, 23, says she understands her father’s pain, but says hers is a pain much more personal; one her father can never understand.
“I can’t believe I’ve discriminated against myself for so long!” said a sobbing Abigail Lukshic, Monday. And every fruitcake my family’s ever received we’ve thrown out. We might as well been committing a hate crime! How couldn’t I’ve seen that hating fruitcake was the same as hating my own kind? …This is worse than in Avatar!”
No doubt many more of the nation’s gays are feeling the same as Abigail this holiday season, thanks to what is becoming known as the “Great Fruitcake Proclamation of 2013.” Added a sniffling Abigail, “I don’t know who I am anymore. And they’re rainbow–colored, too! Can’t believe I didn’t catch that! Please forgive me..!”