Speaking in generalities. . . .
I think most offensive words become thought of as being that when those who are the target/subject of the words decide that they are offensive (or improper/inappropriate). And I'd think history / baggage / accumulated connotation (or whatever you'd want to call it) has much to do with the rejection of such words. I'd also imagine that rejection of baggage laden labels and the adoption of self-chosen identifiers has much do with building a sense of group identity, awareness and pride (and I'm pretty sure there is way more to it than I can understand).
Adoption of new identifiers and the rejection of old labels is something that's been going on all my life, so it doesn't seem all that odd to me. I know that some people (not to be singling out Levi here and suggesting that he is one of these) seem disturbed by it and complain about "political correctness" and I suppose to a certain extent it is. But at some level it seems to me to just be a matter of good manners. If someone (or a group of someones) chooses to be called by a certain term, it just seems polite to respect their wishes.
Heck, some folks take exception to being called by nicknames - it causes me no harm or distress to respect their wishes and address them by their given name. I've noticed that Richard is insistent on being called Richard, so it seems only polite to not call him Rich - it seems to me that it should be his choice.
Likewise it causes me no harm or distress to use words such as African-American / Black, Native American, Gay , & etc.
And let's face it, sometimes it seems everyone has an agenda - - the folks running the website with the filter have theirs . . . some activists GLBT community have theirs. Myself, I thought the "Homosexual Wins 100 Meters" was funny, but then I'm not really caught up in those agendas to the extent that the activists in either camp are. Okay, I thought it showed that the folks running that website are morons. But as Levi pointed out to me another thread, I'm pretty much surrounded by morons so I decided maybe I need to relax a bit and just laugh at `em. ;-)
But anyway, my thoughts went something along these lines.
Other news stories:
Homosexual Talese, author of "Honor Thy Father" (1971) and "The Kingdom and the Power" (1969), wins literary prize.
What if there was a glitch and the filter targeted GOP rather than gay . . . those would be some great headlines.
Potential problems with banner advertising at their website:
Ultra Strength BenHomosexualr Cream - Get Some Today
[This message has been edited by Hal Neumann (edited 7/1/2008).]