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If It's A Choice, My Zygote Chose Balls: Making Sense of Senseless Controversy [Paperback]

Jeremy Hooper
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
Price: 8.29 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over 10. Details
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Book Description

29 May 2012

Jeremy Hooper's Good As You website (www.GoodAsYou.org) is known for blending passion and wit, making the case for LGBT equality worldwide. In If It’s a Choice, My Zygote Chose Balls: Making Sense of Senseless Controversy, Jeremy continues that style, blending a unique mix of memoir and social commentary that argues for equal rights based on relatable human principles.

Hooper leads readers through his own life story, revealing the positive and unnecessarily encumbered aspects of growing up gay in contemporary society. The noted author and activist writes in a sometimes humorous, sometimes serious, but always sharply informed style, opening a window into the realities of family rejection and acceptance. Whether offering direct guidance for would-be straight allies or sharing the inner monologue of a boy who knew who he was long before early adulthood would allow him to own it, Hooper provides a wealth of insight and argument to push the equality conversation forward.

“From constant talk about marriage to the popular parlor game ‘Which celebrity is gay?’ our world is, in many ways, obsessed with LGBT topics,” says Hooper. “However, there is serious neglect in terms of actually tackling the issues at hand. I want to address the weighty topics head on, but in a relatable way.”

As someone who spends ten to twelve daily hours slogging through the "culture war" for his celebrated website, Jeremy Hooper knows better than anyone how far the LGBT community still has to go in order to obtain full equality. At the same time, his focused lens had led him to believe that some of the usual LGBT activism has isolated the fight and stories, leaving much of the continued struggle to go unrealized by the population at large. So Hooper's answer is to present relatable tales that are just as proactive in changing hearts and minds as any textbook gay rights treatment, but doing so in a package that pops with universal heart and wit. Hooper calls out the B.S. for what it is, while keeping an equal focus on uniting folks from all walks of life for the common causes of peace, equality, acceptance, and, ironically enough–family values. All of this while remembering to keep his tongue in or around the cheek region.

Written to engage and entertain, as well as inspire further discussion and action, the book is aimed at a wide range of readers interested and open to learning.

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Product details

  • Paperback: 238 pages
  • Publisher: Good As You (29 May 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0615574548
  • ISBN-13: 978-0615574547
  • Product Dimensions: 1.4 x 15 x 22.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,909,908 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

About the Author

Since founding Good As You (www.GoodAsYou.org) in 2005, Jeremy Hooper has garnered a reputation as a fresh voice in the worlds of Internet publishing and activism. With a background geared both towards entertainment and advocacy, he approaches LGBT issues with a showman’s spirit, pointing out perceived wrongdoings and follies with the clever exuberance of a seasoned jester. Both Hooper and his website have been profiled in the gay and lesbian newsmagazine The Advocate, featured on the PBS program In the Life, on the Logo network, on Sirius radio, and across every corner of the web. As a sought-after consultant, strategist, and speaker, he has worked with leading national organizations like the Human Rights Campaign and GLAAD. Originally from Nashville, TN, the author now lives on the West Side of Manhattan with his husband, Andrew, and the couple’s unbelievably adorable dog, Bosley.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book-just like chatting to a friend! 19 Feb 2013
By Trock
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I wasn't quite sure what to expect when I bought this book, as I had never heard of Jeremy-but it sounded interesting so I thought I would give it a go. I am so glad I did-it was exactly like having a conversation with an incredibly interesting and well-informed friend (albeit one who loves to go off at a tangent and goes from A-B by way of C,D,E,F and of course G!) I finished the book in a day and then proceeded to email the author to fill in my half of the conversation!
This book was a wonderful mix of autobiography and activism, pathos and humour. The tales of a young Jeremy growing up and realising that he liked boys were equally funny (his tale of himself mentally and physically performing acrobatics in order to catch a tantalising glimpse of testicles had me roaring with laughter!) and tragic.The very real angst of the 16 year old Jeremy over how to behave in order to read the "gay edition"of "Entertainment Weekly" without attracting attention from his family as to his sexuality struck me as so very sad that home and family, which should be a place of refuge and safety and acceptance is in actuality the opposite for so many GLBTQ teens. As a parent there were many points which I have mentally filed on the "what not to do list".
I thought the author struck a very good balance between sharing his personal story and highlighting issues and problems which affect the wider community. From the book I have found my way to his blog and will look forward to hearing more! Thoroughly recommend.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great book 14 Aug 2012
Format:Kindle Edition
This book was recommended to me by a close friend who has been helping me deal with the grief my gay son has been getting from some of his relatives. This book has really made a difference for our family, some people who were negative, after reading this came and hugged him and have become his advocates.
It is a cliche that it makes it easier when you know that others are going through what you are going through, Jeremy articulates so well and it really feels like the arguments he makes will win for you. I recommend this excellent book to anyone who needs reminding that we are all so similar, any differences we have are insignificant in the grand scheme of life.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.8 out of 5 stars  54 reviews
44 of 46 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Mom of a gay son and son-in-law 10 Jun 2012
By Susan Shulman - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Of course I was going to read this book (I have read it twice so far). Jeremy is my son-in-law and I have a gay son. My first read left me in awe of Jeremy's amazing use of language while presenting a poignant and clear portrait of the gay rights movement. I was a little nervous reading it for the first time, not only for fear of finding typos (that I knew would annoy the heck out of my perfectionist son-in-law), but worried if I would follow it all or maybe find out something that Jeremy felt that I didn't know how to handle. I made it through, laughing and crying and knowing that this is a wonderful book.

The second read gave me much more. Free of the burdens of looking for typos or scary secrets, I enjoyed the read as a book in which the author is advocating decency for everyone; whether it be for the gay man or lesbian woman or the teenager who is bullied on the playground or the African American or Jew who is subtly kept out of some loop.

This book is a must read for human beings who want to learn, laugh, and feel in touch with the goodness that all humans can and should feel and hopefully demonstrate.

Susan Shulman
22 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Ari C. 5 Jun 2012
By Ari - Published on Amazon.com
The book was an amazing read and I couldn't put it down. It was well written, funny, emotional and provided an important and logical perspective on this issue. Great job and 5 stars must read.
15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An excellent and honest story about hope, love, and common sense 13 Jun 2012
By B. Gerhardt - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I cannot remember exactly how or when I first came across Jeremy Hooper's blog Good As You; perhaps through a link from the Advocate or Human Rights Campaign or just the trusty old Google. What I can tell you is that it is a rare day that I don't visit his site at least once to read up on the latest slings and arrows that have been tossed in this current culture war. Jeremy's writing coupled with his investigative skills have provided a unique, reasoned and calming voice in the battle for full equality.

But who is this young man who has taken on the anti-gay pundits, whom he refers to as `mo foes, with both wit and reason? In his book, If It's A Choice, Jeremy openly and honestly tells his story. I, who am only 5 years his senior, found that his coming out process was very similar to my own. The awareness, the implications, the fear of discovery, the hiding; these were all what Jeremy, myself, and indeed hundreds of LGBT youth went through and are currently going through. While the steps might be different for some, and not always as humorous, what comes through to the reader is that this is an honest story and it could very easily be your story too.

Through the clever use of chapters taken as an aside to the main story, the "Despite what you may have heard" sections are Jeremy's clever way of confronting LGBT stereotypes with his caustic wit, humor and open honesty. After all, when it comes to the stereotypes who are you going to believe, the anti-gay fear mongers or those of us who are actually LGBT?

Several years ago, I was talking with my Dad about some comments made by the Church in response to marriage equality and homosexuality; I was furious at the hypocrisy in light of the scandal the Church was involved in. "Who were they," I argued, "to make such comments about sin and immoral behavior when all this had been going on for years!" My Dad's response was simply "You know, in my day, these discussions wouldn't have even been possible. Think about how far things have come in such a short amount of time." As with most things, my Dad was right. The discussions and progress made in the fight for full equality have been, not in small steps, but in leaps and bounds thanks to people like Jeremy Hooper standing at the forefront showing everyone that we are all as Good As You.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "Handbook" 23 Jun 2012
By Colynne Love - Published on Amazon.com
Jeremy is a terrific writer; the book has just the right balance of personal & political. His ability to trade anger for rational thought is admirable. This should be a handbook for people (me included) who know that marginalizing any group is just fundamentally WRONG, but who have difficulty putting these feelings into such specific--effective--arguments.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic read 19 Jun 2012
By Amazon Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Whether you are gay or you know someone who is -- and especially if you think you don't know someone who is -- this is a book for you. Hooper blends personal stories with principled arguments into a compelling narrative, punctuating very serious, rational arguments with puns and heartwarming (or, sometimes, heartbreaking) stories. As I read, I regularly would find myself laughing and tearing up in the space of a few sentences. Whether you support gay rights or not, Hooper's honesty and humor will draw you into the book, leaving you craving more.
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