THIS IS A BOSS ARTICLE written by a white person on being white/queer. They say dope and accurate things like, “Throughout history, queerness has been through a lot of shit. Queerness has also never been collectively enslaved for hundreds of years. There are, though, queer people who have had that reality.” So white ppl you should read this/reply to it.
Quotes I’d like to emphasize:
- In the antebellum South, a disabled white woman had the capacity to own an non-disabled black man. Whiteness was the capacity to own, blackness was the capacity to be owned. Those dynamics are still relevant today.
- Being white puts us at the top of the food chain in our own communities. If you recall, to be white is to be the master. This is something that follows us wherever we are. Only among other whites does this get erased. Only among other masters is our masterhood revoked.
- The vast majority of hate crimes committed against members of the queer community are against people of color. Despite this, the face of anti-queer violence has been that of normatively attractive white males.
That last point reminds me of the It Gets Better project, started and spearheaded by a white gay man as a reaction to the suicides of a few white gay boys, and the most known participants of which are white.
In addition to that, the message “it gets better” is flawed because it contains inherent passivity. Not “we need to make it better”, not “we are working to make it better”. And while we believe that the majority opinion of America (US-centrism, btw) has been gradually becoming more tolerant to LGBTQ folks, it still has a lot to learn about intersectional identities. We know that Trans* Day of Remembrance is overwhelmingly about murdered trans* women of color.
America is slowly learning one way to deal with all queer people (the whole marriage equality being the top priority thing) but it seems to be still confused by a person who is both queer and not white. Non-binary gender is still dealt with really badly both inside and outside queer spaces.
Somehow it seems like it’s much harder to recognize someone as a real person and respect them socially, legally, and individually if they’re queer, POC, disabled, etc.
And this is related, but I am in no way educated enough to speak on the subject: trans* and non-binary gender identities outside western monoculture.
: recognize the legal right to marry, and the legal benefits that come with it. That makes sense to the ‘Murrikan idealized right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, but it really doesn’t
All of this.
This is difficult to verbalize properly, but I feel like this is where I want to talk with people about pushing back at the way that white social justice groups (acknowledging myself as a member of these, although I would like to emphasize that this is not a “social justice blog”) use and talk about intersectionality - because I feel like a lot of the time it’s extremely simplified or reduced and turned into something that serves white marginalized groups in particular ways and is removed from its history as a concept that Kimberly Crenshaw brought into play, specifically regarding black women, in a moment where black women workers needed to talk about legal recourse in a system that only recognized discrimination against white women and black men. Which is not where intersectionality ends, but where it begins — and it seems like that’s kind of glossed over or entirely forgotten.
Also, if we’re talking about hate crimes and the ways in which legislation and attempted legislation around hate-crimes have been extremely problematic and narrowly-focused, I would also suggest reading this piece by the Sylvia Rivera Law Project. Here’s something that white-dominated, mainstream LGBT advocacy and rights groups led by people who statistically have much less interaction with the prison system than people of color do not usually highlight or think about when we talk about hate crime legislation:
“Hate crime laws do not distinguish between oppressed groups and groups with social and institutional power. Compared to white men, Black men are disproportionately arrested for race-based hate crimes. The second-largest category of race-based hate crimes tracked by the FBI is crimes committed against white people. Every year, the FBI reports a number of so-called “anti-heterosexual” hate crimes—incidents where members of the LGBT community have been prosecuted for supposedly targeting straight people with criminal acts.”
Of course hate crimes against queer folx are completely, totally awful. But to talk about and codify law surrounding hate crimes without addressing the rampantly racist prison system and the ways these laws will undoubtedly affect queer and trans* people of color (and have already affected queer and trans* people of color) is also completely, totally awful. And no one is being held accountable.
And I mean, since trekwho mentioned US-centrism, we can also talk about (not to say that people aren’t already talking about this or that I am the first to bring it up; I’m just throwing it in here) a framework that uses assemblages of oppression to address issues like white liberal/progressive queer American exceptionalism, racism, and colonialism in ways that might be less confined to Western understandings of historical oppression via an intersectionality framework that’s been largely co-opted by white social justice groups.
TL;DR - The point is, read the linked post.