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The Kiss Cam just can’t win

Kiss Cam

Via BTF comes a column in The Faster Times about the Kiss Cam at AT&T Park. Specifically, about how it’s a totally heterosexual affair, and how that’s not cool:

If the Jumbotron at AT&T Park is to be believed, there are no gay people in San Francisco. Either that, or the city’s sizeable gay community includes no baseball fans. The evidence of this is that during the sixth inning of every game, the filler between innings is something called the Kiss Cam. The Kiss Cam consists of couples from the stands being shown on the giant screen in centerfield. After a few seconds, the couple generally notices they are on the screen and kiss each other. The crowd then cheers and the next couple is shown. The couples on the Kiss Cam invariable consist of a man and a woman. Same sex couples are seemingly never shown.

Which sounds like a fine complaint until you remember that the biggest problem with the dumb kiss cam is that it’s so often employed as a means of spreading casual homophobia. The operator thinks it’s cute to put it on two guys -- presumably heterosexual guys -- in order to get hoots and hollers from the crowd and to sow homphobic discomfort.

Call me crazy, but I don’t have a lot of faith in the operator of a kiss cam to distinguish same-sex couples from just a couple of buddies going to the game. At least unless they screen camera operators for gaydar when they’re hired. As a result, the effort to make the kiss cam an equal opportunity affair is just going to present another opportunity for people to be stupid about sexual orientation and stereotypes and stuff.

In light of that -- and in light of the fact that the kiss cam is kind of a dumb idea regardless of how well the operating is executed -- how about just scuttling it?