I think I have written and re-written this post a dozen times in my head. Sometimes I have even tried to put it on (virtual) paper but something would happen that would make me (read: give me an excuse) not to write it. And yes I know this is probably another one in a list of posts that won’t make me lesbian of the year, but it is something I feel I need to say out loud.
Kristi stop stalling…
GAY IS NOT THE NEW BLACK.
GAY MARRIAGE ISN’T THE MOST PRESSING ISSUE OF MY LIFETIME.
THE GAY RIGHTS MOVEMENTS IS NOT THE SAME AS THE BLACK CIVIL RIGHTS MOVEMENT.
I AM SICK AND TIRED OF PEOPLE TRYING TO CONVINCE ME, LET ALONE MY STRAIGHT TRYING-TO-BE ALLIES IT IS.
IT JUST AIN’T!
Ok… I feel better.
I know this is a conversation that has been done to death among my peers. I am sure if I looked I would find an article that will have been written more eloquently than this post will be. I am sure people will find holes in my reasoning. But… I still have to speak my mind (I don’t call this the K Word for nothing).
I really have no clue where to start so… how about here:
People can’t get married if they can’t afford to eat. Let me first say that I am not opposed to gay marriage, but in reality I am not a cheerleader of marriage regardless of the couple. I think marriage is nothing more than a fabricated BILLION DOLLAR institution to transfer responsibility from ones parents to ones mate, both emotionally and financially. I dig it, I understand it. I am not moved by it.
With that being said, I don’t believe the gay marriage equality movement is as nearly as “For Us Bout Us” as it is portrayed to be. If you think that these big dollar gays and lesbians are fighting to help the less fortunate among us… that’s cute. I am sure the fact that it helps them pass their wealth along to their equally wealthy spouses has nothing to do with it. Nope nothing to do with at all.
Let me be clear I don’t think that straight rich people should have more wealth passing loopholes that gay rich people… but I am a little bit more concerned that Black are twice as likely to be unemployed than whites (and have been for 60 years).
Yes Yes I know that was more about the color Green than the color Black so here’s another one for you to chew on…
George Zimmerman wouldn’t be free if Trayvon Martin was a bottom. Ok. Ok. Please fix your face back. I will explain myself if you haven’t already clicked off and unsubscribed from my posts. I don’t know why people were so surprised at the verdict. The crux of the case hinged on the statements from George Zimmerman that he felt threatened. The jury had to believe that George Zimmerman believed his life was in danger. Black men are scary, aren’t they? Then case closed.
I hate to be glib but everywhere you look black heterosexual men are portrayed as innately threatening and menacing. (Feel free to add: in comparison to homosexual men of any race, but I don’t think that is necessary). Even in cases where they are portrayed as upstanding citizens there is that “in spite of” clause. In spite of his upbringing, in spite of being raised in the south side of Chicago, in spite of… being black.
In contrast ,homosexual men are portrayed as effeminate and fragile (I’m not saying that is a truth, we are talking perception). They run from confrontation (unless hair pulling counts), and cower in fear when danger approaches. If the jury was made to deliberate whether George Zimmerman believed his life was in jeopardy when confronting a “fairy” as opposed to a “thug”, do you think there would have been a different verdict? At the very least a longer deliberation? If you even paused, you are proving my point.
*Breathe in, breathe out*
I felt a tangent coming on. I think I will have to write this in parts… Yep parts will have to do. Next part this time next year.
**And yes I know the people wearing the shirts that say “Gay is the New Black” are usually referring to it as being fashionable as opposed to Black to represent AA people**
9 thoughts on “Gay is NOT the New Black… We are still the new/old Blacks”
Just because Syria isn’t the new Ireland doesn’t mean I’m offended when people make comparison between the civil war there and the Troubles in my homeland. The fact is, there are similarities between the two that make me much more sympathetic and understanding to what the Syrian people are enduring than if I had grown up in a peaceful nation.
When people say “Gay is the new Black,” they aren’t minimising the suffering of black Americans. Nor are they saying the history of racial civil rights is identical to that of sexual orientation. They’re not even saying that one is worse than the other.
It’s an acknowledgement that there is a bridge between the two communities, that one can understand the suffering of the other, that there are people who identify with both, who have been touched by both, who have fought for both. It’s an invitation to reach out to each other, to hold each other up, to stand on that bridge together and watch the hatred flow beneath.
And this post does nothing but put a torch to that bridge.
Saying that “Gay is the New Black” isn’t minimizing the struggle of African Americans? Really? To infer that there is a new black is by virtue inferring there is an OLD Black. The problem with that is the OLD Black is still NEW black. Our struggle isn’t one left merely on the page of history books.
By your logic, how about “Gay is the New Holocaust”? “Gay is the New Japanese Internment Camp”? Gay is the “New Trail of Tears”? Isn’t “Gay the New Apartheid”? You damn right it’s not. No one would ever say that EVER. If I am not willing to make those correlations, am I not sympathetic? Do my Jewish, Japanese, American Indian, and South African brothers and sisters have to put that on shirts?
You don’t have to link Black Civil Rights to LGBT rights in order to understand gay and lesbians are marginalized. To believe that that connection has to be made for people “to get it” is incredulous.
And as far as a bridge being burnt, as a black lesbian there is no bridge. I don’t have the ability to leave one life experience and move to another life experience. I am simultaneously black and gay, and yes there is a difference.
Kristi, you are so on point with this one. Thank for being so brave! *rightfist*
Thank you so much. I have to read your book. I have gone to your site several times. It is definitely on my to-read list.
From what I’ve witnessed, the correlation between the LGBTQ and AA experience here in America has been made in response to the Black community’s (esp the religious folk) general non-acceptance of gay people. I have seen/heard ppl say how can an AA not be for the equal rights of gays when they themselves have fought and continue to fight for an even footing here in America. I can’t say I don’t agree w/ that notion. What I am not as familiar w/ is the phenomena in which you speak about, but I do understand your analysis of it. The civil rights movement cannot be replaced w/ the gay rights movement, to do so is to imply that the job is done and we all know that it’s far from. I do however think that the attempt to create empathy by posing a parallel between the two is appropriate.
You brought up something that I intended on bringing up in another post. I “hate” when people try to act as if the Black community has more of a problem with gay people than any other group, especially the church. Growing up, we all knew gay folks in the church. We were directed by them in the choir, we were sitting next to them in the pews. It wasn’t until the mainstream media decided to draw a line in the sand about acceptance that the proclamations about homosexuality started pouring out of the pulpit.
And furthermore you see the clips of anti-gay rallies, we aren’t even half of the participants. But we rarely (as in never) hear blanket statements that the white community has a general non-acceptance of gay people…. Why is that exactly?