How much are homophobes really empowered through the reasoned dismissal of their beliefs? I hesitate to say that we are giving them more of a "voice" than they already have under the Constitution.
This sounds great. But again, I think the nature of discourse is more complicated than this rosy outcome. I wish it would be so, but I'm not at all convinced that Torii Hunter really adds much to that understanding. The implication is that there's no cost to us gaining this possible understanding and empowering folks like Hunter--but there is a cost, while we might better understand Hunter's point of view and the public reaction to it, we also give voice to a point of view that not simply stigmatizes a subset of people but also serves to dehumanize these people.
More generally, I've seen numerous people respond to homophobia in such terms. I'm not making subtle implications about you or anyone else on this website. Again, it would be more difficult for me to convince you of anything if I personally insulted you. I will say it took me quite some time to understand that finer point.
Again, you're being disingenuous: brutishly shouting down homophobia? No one is even quite doing that. And one could argue that homophobia is in itself brutish. Given that you keep responding to my posts politely and thoughtfully, I must be mustering some bits of substance and reason.
Coincidentally , I was a math and science tutor throughout my undergrad (though my graduate career has been a severe pivot), and I've found the same the conclusion. In my experience students failed to understand some basic principle and it was never about a lack of intelligence or capacity; it was a rewarding process to discover what was they found obscure, but that process was difficult. People have trouble telling you what they do not know, what piece they are missing, or what is the nature of belief or attitude However, this isn't physics we are discussing. For many this is a matter of Faith, and there is no reason that can combat Faith. Our focus should be not trying to convince those who are homophobic to change their ways, rather we should seek to disempower those who disseminate the kind of vitriol Hunter is guilty of, so as to not normalize and legitimatize bigoted thinking (though the right they may have to it).