Tons of rhetoric today about how “gay people are spreading” and how “everyone is gay”.
Some of that rhetoric is homophobic:
I don’t get this Transgender Bathroom Hysteria
We’ve been sharing bathrooms for decades already with Trans why is it a problem now?
— Unite & Resist (@mikeejoe) April 18, 2016
And some of it is not:
Is everyone gay now? I LIKED IT BETTER WHEN WE WEREN’T SO FASHIONALBE😡😕😑😯
— Kat Rubio (@KatalinaRubioso) October 11, 2018
(this one, jokingly, of course).
And who would have thought a whole queer human would get to post today.
Happy 30th Annual National Coming Out day to all my LGBTQ+ folks.
I am here as a Pansexual/Queer Non-binary human posting about all that good good gay.
But you see, with everything good and whole, can be a criticism. And within the balance of both, do we see the systems in which they operate, and the ways we navigate those spaces.
First, what is NCOD? In 1988: Robert Eichberg (who passed in the 90’s due to AIDS) and Jean O’Leary founded it. Click the year for more information.
Coming out in Media:
You all know the standard coming out story. A struggle, a tear, oh the fear, a strike, a fright, I wish I might…come out. Then…two words, dramatically uttered from their lips, amongst their parents…
Oh the shame. The anger. The tears, the drama. Granted, note: some coming out stories are very similar to the ones on TV; overall, each coming out story is unique. THAT’s the problem.
There’s room for ONE coming out narrative in the media: Pity. We pity the LGBTQ+ community. We pity their identity. When, in reality, that’s also the problem.
Bottom line: stop making carbon copy pity driven coming out stories. Our oppression and pain is not a platform for your hollywood profit.
Call it “being inclusive” all you want, hollywood, but how about having queer people write queer stories?
The Good NCOD has done:
NCOD has given so many folks a day to come out, if so they choose. This has given them an opportunity to reveal an identity they’ve likely kept closeted, or only revealed to a few folks. *note: coming out is a continuous process*
This expectation for coming out on NCOD can be especially harmful if you identify or are part of multiple marginalized identities. Also, the pressure to come out is especially prevalent on NCOD. Everyone on social media is doing it, why can’t you? And if you’re someone who can’t/it may not be safe for you to do so, this poses as problematic. There are various identities folks may identify with, and thus makes it unsafe; and this indirect shame can be further marginalizing, as it continues to push power structures of privilege within the LGBTQ+ community, further apart.
Pro Tips: This just comes along with being a good ally. Often times, if queer folks feel it may be unsafe to come out, they may choose to stay closeted. ALWAYS ask someone if they’re okay with you correcting their pronouns with other folks. Also, never offer someones identities. That’s not your story to tell (unless it’s, for example, an out celebrity).
Coming out is a privilege, and not everyone has that. NCOD has it’s ups and downs. Year 30, and still going strong. Happy NCOD to all by LGBTQ+ folks. Remember:
You do NOT have to come out to be valid.
You do NOT have to come out to be seen.
Your story does NOT have to be mainstream.
You do NOT have to come out if you don’t want to. You get to choose when and where. You are valid.
Click here for a list of celebrities who have come out in 20GAYTEEN so far.
This is @socialjusticesolidarity, gay all day every day, signing off~