As you may or may not know I had the pleasure of attending the Miami premiere of HBO’s OutList last week (or maybe the week before now that I think of it). I walked out of the screening with a more honest understanding of how my race, my socio-economic status, and my relationship with God, affect my identification as a lesbian.
Being black in America is one thing. Being a lesbian in America is one more thing. Making less than 6 figures in America is yet another thing. But being a black, lesbian, making less than 6 figures, who loves the Lord and can’t wear a bodycon dress unless it has maternity elastic… Chiiiiiile.
No no this I didn’t learn from the OutList, but I did want it to be very clear that I am aware of it all.
Back to the screening…
I wanted to talk about each of the people included in the project individually but my heart and mind won’t let me.
I love the work Janet Mock is doing. I support her passion. I support her success. I support her journey. I can do all of that and still say, Janet Mock‘s story is not my story. And that is perfectly fine with me.
I must say I was excited to see Suze Orman. But I was reminded very quickly that Suze Orman is a rich white woman…. that happens to sleep with other rich white women. If one of your biggest issues is that is your rich wife won’t get your money when you die, we don’t have the same reality.
Did you know that:
A UCLA study found that 7.6 percent of lesbian couples live in poverty, which is higher than the 5.7 percent rate for married heterosexual couples and the 4.3 percent for coupled gay men.
Keep in mind that in 2012, the poverty line for a two-person household was $15,079.
Wanda Sykes mirrored a lot of my sentiments and past experiences. For those who know me and/or took the time to read my bio on here, you know that I am not a gold star superlesbian. I have dated and even almost married a man. Did I have an epiphany while watching her portion? No not really, do I still love her long time? Yes and ma’am.
The most shocking thing to me were the two portions that stayed with me long after the screening was over. If you had asked me beforehand, who I would have connected the most with, I PROMISE YOU, neither of these names would have been on the top of my list.
First was R. Clarke Cooper, the former Executive Director of the Log Cabin Republicans. He said something that I was happy to hear someone on the national stage say. When talking about how it was to be a gay republican, he said that though the perception would be that the republicans gave him the hardest time, in reality the gays are just as judgmental. I find myself saying things like that ALL THE TIME. I won’t say there is a cult mentality in the LGBT community… no no I will say it. There is a cult mentality in the lgbt community that irks me to no end. The only requirement of being a lesbian that I read in the member’s packet was that I eat p*ssy… so that’s all I got. How dare I say that I wasn’t overcome with emotion at the repealing of DOMA? How can I possibly believe black civil rights and gay civil rights aren’t the same thing? Blezphamy!
The second person that left an impression on me was Cynthia Nixon. I will have to paraphrase her because I didn’t intend to quote her but the basic sentiment was, Gay people should have never conceded God to the religious right. YES!!!!!! I have had similar conversations with friends about this before. Why do many have such a tenuous relationship with God? Is it because unlike with friends and family, it is the only relationship that they can have (or not have) on their own terms? Is it easier to not be a Christian than to be willing to express your faith and express your love for you partner in the same voice? I don’t know… but I would really like to. Whether we want to talk about it or not America is a largely christian country. And even if they only go to church on Easter and Mother’s day, there are a large segment of the country will fight tooth and nail against anything that goes against their belief system. Oh and pretending they are just “religious nuts’ or “fanatics” isn’t going to help anyone…
You know what let me wrap this up. *forced smile*
Did you guys see it yet? I believe it’s on TV now. Please share.
6 thoughts on “Why We Shouldn’t Have Given Away God… and other things I learned from OutList”
I enjoyed watching the Out List. Actually, I watched it twice and might watch it again before I delete it from my DVR. I actually hadn’t picked up on Cynthia Nixon discussing how the gay community just sort of gave God to the religious right. I guess I sort of fit into that category. I personally stopped believing in a God after I came out and after a lot of soul searching and research. Sometimes when I look back I do wonder if I took the easy road. My faith is definitely a quest I have been on for some time now.
I also liked how NPH connected gay men and femininity together. Some people assume gay = feminine. He brought up the issue of sex and how he had a difficult time with that because of society’s expectations on us. That is a struggle I have had far before I even came out.
Finally, I liked how Suze Orman brought up the fact that she can go to South Africa and be recognized as a married woman to her partner. A lot of that can actually be attributed to the work Nelson Mandela did when he was president of South Africa. Although the point Orman was making is sort of moot now, since I believe she is legally married to her partner and DOMA has no been repealed, her point in saying South Africa recognized her as a married woman when her own country didn’t was a powerful statement, in my opinion.
I did like NPH portion of the piece as well. I didn’t think about it until you brought it up (thanks for the reminder) it definitely struck home with me in the same way that the masculinity = lesbians is still a mainstream correlation. I wonder if we in the community her perpetuate that though… Thoughts?
I have seen the struggle between one’s faith and their sexuality can affect people. I pray (and I hope that doesn’t offend you) for your strength and peace on your journey.
You’re welcome for the reminder… 🙂 I definitely think there are people out there that perpetuate the gay man = effeminate and the lesbian = masculine. I personally try to break those stereotypes. I’m definitely far from the stereotypical gay guy.
Thank you for your prayers. They don’t offend me, they are appreciated.
We have not surrendered God to the “religious right”. There are affirming and accepting churches about.
As for gay Republicans- I am quite happy for a gay man not to commit wholeheartedly to The Struggle, to believe that there are other things more important, even other political causes more important- but (as a foreigner) I find much of what Republicans stand for vile. I want to say that. And while someone might grow up in a Republican family and never challenge it or know better, a gay child growing up should be enough of an outsider to see through the whole culture and grow beyond it.
When I talk about the religious right I am really talking about the political landscape. In our conversations about gender, and sexuality we have given the Republicans a moral high ground. They are able to say they are championing God’s will and we don’t fight against that misrepresentation. Where are the gays and lesbians saying that our love is God’s will. It’s not easy by any means but we deserve to be a part of that dialogue.
I have been mistreated by Republicans and Democrats, gays and straights so I try to lump them in a category. I will say that many of the loudest Republicans are the idiots. I believe (maybe foolishly) there are more moderate Republicans that HAVE TO emerge on the scene or we will become a one party nation (which is very scary).
Tribute 22 years ago, the first of three consecutive trapeze. AIR JORDAN 8 RETRO “Three Time’s A Charm” is about a strong return.