Today I have to open a particularlly ugly can o' worms. And one I don't quite know how to frame. Do I present this unbiased and let you draw your own conclusion or give my honest opinion?
Recently in Queerty was a rather vitriolic article from one of their contributing bloggers, Nakhone Keodara. In it he states that since the LGBT Movement is so full of rampant racism and white privelidge that he is opting to quite the movement alltogether. Mr. Keodara worked with the "Gays United Network". He has been a consistant critic of the effort to place gay marriage back on California's ballot in 2010. He has also been very vocally critical of Cleve Jones and the "National Equality March" Recently he removed his organizations endorsement of the 2010 election in favor of 2012 and recieve and recieved a great deal of critisiscm...that is till he deemed the cause unworthy on the grounds of racial discrimination....
...HUH?...Pardon me, but I thought when we were fighting for gay rights we were fighting for the rights of the entire community, no matter what your skin color.
The full article can be found here
The night after prop 8 passed, we marched down market street with thousands of other gay men and women and those who supported us. I don't recall there being a separate march for people of color. Nor was there was a separate march for the transgendered. We all marched together. If we can't do that, what the hell are we fighting for?
The question this article raises is this: "Is the GLBT movement primarily driven by the 'single white male"?
To which, My opinion is an emphatic no.
Its seems a terrible diversion at a time when we have such close races in states like Washington and Maine to be infighting about the state of racial equality in the gay rights movement but here we find ourselves. I don't take Mr. Keodara's opinions as those of other people of color in the gay community. In all likelyhood it is his axe and he intends to grind it and if we won't play he's gonna take his toys and go home.
Now there is racism in the gay community...because the GLBTQ community is comprised of individuals from all walks of life. To deny that racism exists is foolish and irresponsible.When I hear of gay people saying anything about another race it ticks me off to no end because we should really know better, not only because of our own struggles, but because in this day and age its just plain ignorant. Its a facepalm moment everytime it happens. But to say that gay rights are not worth fighting for because of it denies the contributions of all the people of color who have lived, suffered, and bled side by side with their white counterparts. And what about the contributions of women?
Mr. Keodara's statement intimates that people of color are being left behind by a movement that is being highjacked by white men with Cleve Jones as an example of this. But what about all those years when AIDS first leveled the gay community and it was the women who stepped up and helped care for the fallen? Gay men and gay women did not get on very well in those early days of the struggle for gay rights but when the chips were down, they were there to pick up the pieces. At any given rally count how many men there are to the number of women. Its educational. At all our prop 8 protests the number of women that showed up to protest were easily double that of the men.
If, in the best case scenario, gay marriage is legalized, do not people of color benefit just as whites do? I'm really not understanding mr keodara's assertion that people of color are being left behind...perhaps that is my ignorance...but I dont get it. He seems to think that we should drop the battle for marriage equality and focus on AIDS and race issues in the gay community. How does giving up that fight in any way help a black lesbian woman who wants to marry? or for a real life example, how does it help the two black men, Michael Cole Smith and Jamil Smith Cole, Whos recent wedding photos resulted in the firing of a Morehouse College administrator. These gentleman seem to be benefiting from making a public statement about their commintment to each other. Don't you think?
My Grandma always taught me that GOD loves us all the same and wants us to do the same...
With that in mind I leave you with a comment posted on the afformention article that quotes "Will and Grace".
No. 2 · Topher
This whole tirade reminds me of a great moment from Will & Grace:
GRACE: …don't tell me that you're gonna pull out the gay card.
WILL: It is a lot harder for a gay man–
GRACE: Because if you're pulling out the gay card, I'm pulling out the girl card, and we both know that the girl card trumps the gay card.
WILL: Don't make me get my friend Joannie over here, because we both know that the only card that trumps the girl card is the gay girl card.
GRACE: Ok. I'm not losing this. I will call Jill, my African-American, bi-curious, dyslexic… Forget it. I'm exhausted. I fold.
WILL: That's a good move, because I happen to know a differently-abled transsexual with split ends, and that beats the house, missie.
Here is a link to Mr. Keodara's previous commentaries on the GLBT movement and race discrimination: www.queerty.com