I see that the Alexander the Great film is stirring more nonsensical controversies like this:

…. conservative Christians have loudly denounced Alexander as “pro-gay” propaganda from Tinseltown, insisting that Alexander was a firmly hetero hero. To add to the film’s problems, the public has stayed away from what was to be the big movie of the Thanksgiving weekend.
Since opening, it has grossed just under $20m (?10.5m), leaving it in sixth place in a table of the most popular current films behind National Treasure, The Incredibles, Christmas with the Kranks, The Polar Express and even The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie.
The mainstream press has also ridiculed the movie – calling it everything from a “noble failure” to an “indifferent epic”.
It is being suggested that a film about a global warrior with dyed blond hair and waxed legs was never going to conquer an America fresh out of a presidential election in which gay rights became a major issue.
The film is a blowsy biography of the Macedonian conqueror, long on emotional speeches and short on battles. But the poor script and suspect casting is only partly to blame.
According to one online critic,Alexander is a flop because he is “as gay as a maypole”. Christians considering seeing the film have even been urged to “speak to your pastors immediately because Satan is attempting to enter your mind”.

As I have argued before, both “sides” (assuming they are that) are missing the point. Alexander’s homosexuality cannot be measured, judged, or even fairly portrayed in modern terms. He was not “gay” in the Hollywood sense as the ancients did not see sexuality that way. They didn’t offset homosexuality from heterosexuality as sexual identities, much less human identities (or “isms”), and the modern concept of gayness — so hopelessly mired in reactions to guilt and shame — is at least as inapplicable to ancients like Alexander as are contemporary conservative religious views. To claim Alexander was heterosexual is as ridiculous as claiming he was homosexual. Even claiming he’s bisexual presupposes two sexualities. It just doesn’t work. Alexander had male lovers and many wives, and I doubt he saw much of a contradiction there.
But enter modern politics, and they’ll slam a closet door on a man who never imagined such a thing, then open the closet and “out” him, then argue over and denounce a “sexuality” he wouldn’t have comprehended, and then place him in the “Satanic” camp when he never knew Satan.
The whole thing is laughable.
Except no one seems to be laughing.
MORE: Did Alexander the Great anticipate that someday, he’d be expected to reach out and “conquer an America fresh out of a presidential election in which gay rights became a major issue?” I think I followed the presidential campaign as closely as most people, but until today I never realized that “gay rights” was a “major issue” — much less that it was setting the stage for Alexander’s final conquest.
But then, I’m not Oliver Stone. . .
UPDATE: Once again, Belmont Club’s Wretchard has an excellent post about what Oliver Stone is not saying about Alexander’s dark side, especially the cruelty and slaughter so common in ancient times:

While attempting to organize a resistance against Alexander, Darius was betrayed by one his subordinates, Bessus, and slain. Bessus had calculated on winning the gratitude of Alexander; but the demi-god understood above all how treason, now that he was king, had to be rewarded. Bessus was cruelly mutilated at Alexander’s command and executed.
Hollywood may have calculated that none of this was important; that the sole point of interest of a population weaned on the tabloids was the earth-shaking question of whether or not Alexander was gay. Jeanne Reames-Zimmerman convincingly argues the poverty of the question. In her monograph, Reames-Zimmerman argues that the concept of gayness, as it is presently understood, did not exist in the ancient world. From her discussion it is possible to say that Alexander might have been gay in the sense that convicts in a penitentiary are gay — an exercise in power by one man over another — and if that analogy is inexact so is any other. The world of 320 BC is as distant from us today as the 19th century, the last point in time when men intuitively understood the ancient world.
(Via Glenn Reynolds.)

I am reminded of a previous post about cruelty and pain — and I suspect the ancients’ attitudes toward pain and cruelty are as analogous to modern ideas as ancient “homosexuality” is to the “gay movement.”
Try as we might, we can’t feel either.
More: Pain and ancient morality:

Gaius Mucius, a Roman youth, vowed to assassinate the Etruscan King Porsenna but mistakenly killed the king’s treasurer, who was distributing wages to the soldiers. Brought before Porsenna, Gaius announced that he was but one of many youths sworn to slay him.
To prove the Romans’ resolve to resist the invading Porsenna, he held his hand in the fire without flinching until it burned away. Amazed by this demonstration, Porsenna set him free and concluded peace with Rome. Thereafter, Gaius Mucius, known as Mucius Scaevola (the left-handed), became a symbol of Roman virtue.

Ouch?