By now you will have heard the news that J.K. Rowling herself has decided to preempt the Dumbledore slash fiction. She reveals that Dumbledore’s intense attraction to Grindelwald was homosexual attraction.
But if you want an explanation for why this is silly, see Ross Douthat’s and his follow-up. My real concern is the devaluation of male friendship, of which this is only an example. My real concern is that modern times implicitly deny that deep male intimacy can be something other than sexual (whether carnally sexual or platonic).
I know better, because I’ve experienced that intimacy. I knew one or two companions on my mission that I loved almost insanely. We walked down the streets together arm in arm. When we sat we leaned against each other, like John the Beloved laying against Jesus. Separation was painful. I don’t think it would be distorting the hothouse atmosphere of those days too much to say we would have died for each other. I knew a couple of soldiers–I knew an atheist seminary drop out in Spain–I knew a handful of fellow students–with whom it was the same.
The shame of our times is that even now some of you can’t read this without thinking that of we friends I or the other must have been latently gay.