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07 November 2008

Comments

Preston

Who is surprised...these gays are white first, gay second.

Kenley

The ugly head of white privilege has reared itself again. well if you read the comments at Towleroad or Queerty you could see this coming. They have been caling Obama all sorts of names and slamming blacks for Prop 8. None seem willing to blame whites too.

Howard U Freshman

the hoods came off mighty quick!

that massa mentality is never far from the surface. they feel HOW DARE YOU PEOPLE DENY US OUR RIGHTS because we helped you get a president. we have been denied our rights for centuries ... and amazingly many white gays dont understand we are black and gay too

Ryan

I just find it very sad, typical, and pathetic that uneducated and idiotic LGBT folks are finger pointing and so quick and easy to blame blacks and latinos for allegedly being the reason behind why Prop 8 passed...

YET, none are GOING IN on the 86% of WHITE REPUBLICANS who voted yes on Prop 8 also...what gives?

White LGBT activists and the White LGBT community needs to admit that:

a) they weren't prepared at all to do an all out BATTLE over the Mormons, who had a headstart of over a few YEARS to pour all their money and resources into this

b) they didn't BOTHER to counter the mormons and other white religious right folks going into black churches an counteracting their rhetoric with reasons WHY Prop 8 needsed to fail


c) those No on Prop 8 activists should have gone into POC communities (LA-koreatown, east la, watts, compton, inglewood, bay area-oakland, etc.), and done grassroots community activism and worked with POC LGBT activists in those communities. sipping on lattes in WeHo and the Castro (SF) pontificating about the Grey's Anatomy Callica storyline and how Shonda Rhimes isn't a friend of the community, kee-keeing about Lindsey Lohan and wondering about whether or not your Abercrombie and Fitch ensembles works for a night out at The Abbey ain't helping the very people who would have supported you (POC's) had you just rolled UP into their neighborhoods and done the nitty gritty work. as always, folk want to claim the spoils, but not sow the seeds to GET those spoils.

d) take a hard look in the mirror: check your racism and bigotry before you CHECK someone else's..BOOM.

Prop 8 and similar laws will continue to pass b/c of these very things....

CA LGBT activists want this to fail...GET RIGHT and GET DIRTY and do the REAL work to ensure that gay marriages are recognized in CA and eventually, ALL STATES.

a link to a story that breaks down the issue: http://www.dailykos.com/story/2008/11/7/34645/1235/704/656272

Derrick from Philly

"... whenever the rights of a minority are put to popular vote, they almost always lose."


You said it all, Rod--and these ignorant faggots are too stupid to realize that. Their battle is in the courts (state & federal).

The emotions that are aroused are frightening. I'm sitting here imagining the Crypts and the Bloods stumbling upon one of these Gay KKK rallies.

Roger Pollard

It is indeed tragic that at a time when our community should unite, we allow an overtly bigoted action against us to divide our community. It is a damn shame and disgrace that as we protest injustice and homophobia, we are subject to our community's own internalized racism.

If every African-American is accountable for the actions of some, then doesn't it stand to reason that every Caucasian is accountable for slavery and segregation? Please, grow up and act like space is more than the distance between your ears.

A. Ronald

Rod thanks much for posting the email. My boyfriend grew up in Georgia and says this is the same type of racist and bigotry he saw when he was a kid.

I think Obama's election has been brilliant but it still shows that our nation is just as divided as ever. I am appalled that so many white gay men want to attack blacks as a group and refuse to look at their own brothers, sisters and cousins who did not support their cause.

Matthew Rettenmund

First, I'm not blind to racism among white gays (oh, the stories), but I believe it is definitely in the minority. For example, do you think 70% of white gays would vote down any civil rights if they were a ballot issue?

The racist part is that they're taking the bait on the 70% vote among blacks and refusing to focus on the fact that other groups also voted heavily against us, like older people from all backgrounds and Hispanics and, of course, Republicans.

Of course, the reason white gay people might feel angry toward blacks is we EXPECT old people to be against us, we EXPECT Republicans to be against us, but we naively expect minorities of all backgrounds to be with us. The real struggle is against the more powerful groups, but the real hurt is delivered by the groups with whom we presume there to be sympatico. (The presumption comes from the perception that we all share being discriminated against, and maybe historically from the support white gays have shown toward civil rights.)

Anyone discussing homophobia in the black community needs to step back from the defensive line that it's somehow racist to consider homophobia an even bigger problem among blacks than it is among whites—clearly, it is a measurably bigger problem, and I'd guess religion is to blame. Outreach is needed.

You won't find me arguing that NO ON 8 was mishandled.

Again, yes, there are white racist gay people. But look at the first comment on this blog: "these gays are white first, gay second." That's a hateful comment that might have been aimed at the N-word-using white gays from these specific stories that you're relating, but that sounds more like a generalization about the white gay community. This is the kind of grotesque, race-baiting comment that is not going to move anyone forward.

All that said, as unhelpful as it is for white gays to focus on the 70% vote from blacks on this issue, it's disgusting (and illogical) to point at a black person in CA and act like he or she is personally responsible for those votes. And of course anyone who would lash out and use racial epithets isn't worthy of being in the discussion in the first place.

Just my thoughts on this. It's going to be a complicated battle, and my fear is the right wing will do what it should have done years ago, and use gay and other social issues as a wedge to pry the reliable black vote away from Democrats. We all need to stick together, eyes wide open about our shortcomings, because they're nothing compared to the disastrous ideology on the other side.

S. Flemming

All I can say is wow ...

I've told several people this story today but I'm gonna tell it here: I am working on my master's degree and in my class I am one of three gay men. (The other two are white.) One of them came in and the first thing he said to me was, "How about that election? One step forward and three steps back ..." and went into a whole tirade about black people voting for change but then pushing to ban gay marriage. He wasn't hostile, but I was like damn - I may be black but I'm not happy about it either. It actually led to a very interesting discussion in the class between everyone including our professor, who has a gay child. But it was just ... I don't know. I just think this whole thing is sad.

FQ

the korean support for this ballot measure was very strong. there i a very big born again xtian community there no recriminations against asians

Femme 4 Femme

S. Fleming, I totally agree with you. At my job yesterday there were several coworkers who were discussing the prop 8 and all blamed black voters. One even asked me about 'my community' supporting the prop 8. I am gay and was very offended but this didn't seem to matter. I can't speak for all black people. I am sorry this passed but very sad they still ignore gay black people.

J Matt

Oh wow. Rod, you did it again! (Applause) Whoever said that the ugly head of racism was deeply buried under our soil is most certainly wrong. Thanks for pointing out the reverse patterns of racism and how the Prop 8 heat is getting noticed by the media. I'm still certain that we are not getting to the root of the problem in the black community, in the church and within the vast culture of our country. You bring up a big point that Prop 8's failure was supported by a large majority. Blacks are still a small fraction of the voting population. I don't think those angry and hateful protesters get the big picture.

Alberto

As people have said in the comments, doesn't matter if you are gay. White priviledge comes first. Just see the gay Republicans, such an exotic crowd.

Luther

Not at all surprised nor shocked, its been the same way on almost every gay white run web site, and, the rage and hate that some are spewing as reported by Rod and the witness just goes to show, white gay men, not all of them, but, more than a few hate blacks more than white straight people. And, the hatred seems more prevalent with white gay men than women, I guess being a white man and all the privileges that carries shocks them when they don't get what they feel is theirs.

And for Matthew, you are indeed a rare gay white man, I have known many, but few that are as open as you are. Perhaps a new book to address this dirty little secret that the gay community refuses 100% to admit it has.

Derrick from Philly

"We all need to stick together, eyes wide open about our shortcomings, because they're nothing compared to the disastrous ideology on the other side."

You're right, MATTHEW, but some gay leaders or personalities (Dan Savage) have been fanning these racially divisive flames since the Prop. 8 disaster. We don't need black and white gays going to war with each other. Also, I don't see black gangs in LA coming to the defense of black gays-- BUT if they hear about the racial insults coming from LA's white gay community...well, all hell could break loose.


I don't know...maybe I'm over-reacting, but it looks dangerous to me.

Tryon

I am not surprised because white gay men are very privileged and are used to geting everything they want. They are white and are not used to being told no. But I am very sad to see the gay white privilege associated with Obama election, like they are owed something by black people they have never reached out to.... So sad...

Lang B.

The N word will always be non black people's hidden weapon of choice. I do not care how evolved non coloreds (lol) say they are.

I am so fed up with America and it's bi-polar disorder with race and it's retardation with sexuality.

Sick of judgements based on lust of the loins (we all have them- gay or straight- asexual). It is sooo boring that people want to dictate what is right for other people's anatomy.

America is really spiralling towards a great depression (emotionally- rationally- not just financially).

Triple gasp!

I'm gonna have a private island one day I SWEAR.

Damnit already.

TheRevKev

Rod.

Wow.

I am flabbergasted and tongue-tied at this moment, which is saying a great deal.

I think that I want to write pages and papers about this, but I am still in one place about the Election and elevation of President-Elect Barack Obama. I am still saddened by the Prop 8 foolishness in California. I am torn.

But this, white gays, showing their "colors" is shaking me out of my comatose state of sadness and soaring celebration. This post just snapped me out of it.

As a Political Activist from Washington, DC, who has often bled the lines between Southeast slums and Dupont Circle mixers for much of my life. I have given eloquent speeches before City Councils and mayoral candidates, only to have white men no have no other way to show their "attraction" to my "intelligence" than to grab my crotch. I have had white men smile in my face and say something stupid about race, as though I wasn't in the room or the conversation. I have had "you are different" said to me from both the Gay side with Blacks and from the Black side as it relates to their perception of gays. I have often watch, from the middle, and see that this night was coming.

I am not throwing the gauntlet down in the Black community nor am I am saying that I will never stand with the white gay community ever again.

In this moment, on this day, I am calling and compelling THE BLACK GAY COMMUNITY, those who stand in this same space, on this same mountain as I, and say that WE MUST STAND FOR US.

We must get louder with our own folks--Black and brown--and let them KNOW that we are. We must stop avoiding the issues of Gay rights in our churches and stop sitting and staying in churches that spew hate, only because we grew up there or love the choirs and the history therein. We must talk to our aunts and uncles, sisters and brothers, our family and let them know that we exist. We build businesses and families. We love each other and want real relationships and not just trade and tricks. We must let ourselves be seen so that when our people go to think of gays, they aren't just thinking about Will and Jack, Chelsea and WeHo! We must show up for ourselves!

We must continue to challenge our white gay counterparts. We must challenge their stance with their privilege and the ways that they don't show up on our issues. We must call them out for the times that they haven't stood on all issues, just their own perceived community needs. I still recall reading a 4-paneled cartoon in DC, where a group of white gays marched down DC streets, the same streets which Dr. King called black men and women and white men and women and brown men and women together. The next panel shows them holding signs and shouting for their rights. The 3rd panel shows them assembling to go into a local gay bar. The final panel says it all. With a black man standing beside the white group at the bar, one of the white men looks over at him and says "WHO LET HIM IN HERE?!"

That's the conflict that we don't talk about as Rod writes in the Advocate and I stand as the only Black gay man (or woman) in the room as we fight for full marriage equality in New Jersey. We don't have those conversations and try to believe that white gay men and black gay men desire the same thing. The truth is we do not.

As I sit with my Black family, I have so many passionate conversations about who I am, how I love, what I am looking for, why I am today single, introduced them to partners when I was in love and they know the fullness of me.

I don't feel the same connection with white gay allies and "friends" to do that because they don't get it. They believe that they are liberal and open and beyond things of their past...until this.

"IF YOU ARE GOING TO CALL ME A FAGGOT...I AM GOING TO CALL YOU A NIGGER"

Someone screamed that in WeHo and that's so closed, so vile, so ignorant and so telling. I am going to write about this, but not today. Today, I have to breathe and not become to taken aback by this that I ask for the heads of every white gay this side of the Mississippi. Today, I will celebrate the rise of a Black man to the highest office in the land, even though he struggles with my right to marry, but says he would stand for my right to be in a loving recognized relationship. Today, I am going to call a white gay friend and talk some sense into myself, some sense of my truth and some sense that all white gays are the same. Today, I am going to stand still.

What's most interesting about this WeHo revolt is that it happened in the Gay Streets of Gay Los Angeles. I am always surprised by taking anger to the streets when they are you're own streets and most people in those streets agree with you. Any Black person in WeHo during that rally should have been INSTANTLY seen as ALLY and FRIEND and likely to be GAY or AFFIRMING. White men, beyond their Gayness, had a moment when their privilege kicked in and they thought, just for a moment, YOU NEGROES DIDN'T DO WHAT WE WANTED AND WE WILL DESTROY.

Shame on The WeHo contingent who have just set Black and Gay relations back a decade. This is yet another telling day in the transformation of America. Today, as we walk into The Abbey in LA and Mr. P's in DC and those places where we have blended or tried to across the country, I pray that we have NEW CONVERSATIONS ABOUT RACE AND ORIENTATION AND RELIGION AND COME TOGETHER under the umbrella of understanding that President-Elect Obama used to bridge gaps and handle issues (as he handled the conversation on race...upfront and on-camera, not under his breath as Rev. Jesse Jackson did, although I respect his own struggle).

Today, as Gay, Same Gender Loving, label-less men who love men of color, we are being called to have conversations with our families, our friends and ultimately with each other.

Yes, Rod, I will write about this. But today, I am going to cry because as the truth showed itself. We realized that America has opened itself up enough to consider the best man for The Job is A Black Man. We have also realized that not only have Black folks forgotten that we were once legislated out of our own rights, but that when pressed again a wall, Gay men still have moments when their white male privilege and assumption shows up and uses itself to try to put Black people in what they still believe is "their place."

I will write about that, but not today.

Today, I pray.

Kevin

For me, the most interesting element of this discussion is that just as there aren't enough black folks in America to be solely responsible for electing Barack Obama as President; 70% of blacks who voted in California voting against Proposition 8 is a smaller number than the percentage of white Republicans who voted against this measure. But, I guess it's easier for California's white gay population to blame the defeat on blacks instead of the population of people who are truly responsible - THEIR PARENTS!

Duwayne

I have to admit I am torn on the issue. I think most gay people naively thought this would fail and are now trying to blame anyone they can for this defeat. I am as upset as anyone that prop 8 passed but this is not the end of the world as we know it. We have to continue to fight and come together black, white, brown and purple. I am proud to say all of my black and brown family voted NO on prop 8. I wish white gay men would realize that this hatred is not going to help our cause. We need to accept defeat and challenge this through the courts and if that doesn't work try again at the ballot in 2 years. We have a lot of work to do.

Austin TX

You betta preach Rev Kev, I cant tell you how many times I have been GROPED and then called N----- after I said NO.

Kevjack

I agree with Matthew that we need to move forward. The NBJC has been doing some outreach to churches, but they don't have the resources that larger organizations do. We cannot let crazies like Andrew Sullivan and Mr. Savage drive wedges between us.

I think we need to think about three things here:

1) We need to be open and honest about ourselves in our communities. We need to stop the hiding, stop the shame, and stop our self-destructive behavior where we worship all that is straight and "unclockable"...(I know, all those white A&F boys are doing the same thing, but I'm not thinking about them right now). The very divided reactions to Noah's Arc on this blog shows us that we black men have some problems with ourselves.

2) We need to walk out of these hateful churches. We need to put our religious leaders on notice. I am sick of black gay men (and not just in the choir stand, but in the pulpit too) who support the killing of our spirits. I don't care if you grew up in that church, I don't care if your Mama would be upset-- grow a pair, get some self respect, and move to a church where you will be sowing into something that supports you.

3) We need to work with organizations that want to do outreach. And if there aren't any we need to create some. This marriage thing is scary-- more black SGL couples are raising kids than white ones-- we are more hurt by the passage of this hateful act. I know from personal experience that building these types of bridges is hard, but there are some people out there (like Matthew, at least from his post) who can be used to help form these relationships. But they must go both ways, and we must keep an open mind.

This is just a beginning, but we need to start somewhere.

Steve

It is situations like these that cause me to roll my eyes whenever I hear some say that we are living in a "post-racial society." Umm, no we aren't--- and I doubt that utopia will ever exist in our lifetimes. And bravo to the commenter, Kevin, above. His comment speaks directly to the inability for some to see the world beyond their own noses. Even if 100% of the Black voting bloc selected YES at their polling places, it would not have passed without a lot MORE "others" also voting YES.

TheRevKev

OK,

I have come to the consensus that KEVINs are BRILLIANT! I am working on a new magazine for 2009 called KEVIN, which will, among features on music, entertainment, politics and religion, feature a different KEVIN in each issue!

KEVIN and KEVJACK, I wholeheartedly agree with both of your statements. So many of these white gays will NOT deal with the fac that they have people who smile in their faces--LIKE SARAH PALIN--who say that they are their friends and that they love them and then they stomp on their right to BE! I have heard more than one white person who has "gay friends" smile while they say that and then say that they are not in support of gay marriage.

As a pastor of an all-affirming church in New Jersey, to speak to men and women who still go into churches where they are vilified and dogged and THEY STILL GO AND TITHE AND TRY TO DIG TO THROUGH HATE TO FIND THE REAL LOVE OF GOD! SHAME, SHAME, SHAME ON GAYS WHO KNOWINGLY PARTICIPATE IN THIS SPIRITUAL HOMOCIDE, AS IT KILLS THE SOULS OF MEN AND WOMEN DAILY!

We've got to stand up. Someone made a point also that scares me. BLACK GANGS would never stand up for gays, but in this case, those Crips and Bloods would make their way into WeHo and the bloodshed could be considerable if we don't do something about this clash and soon! It's sick and it's sad but something has got to be done, now!

(AND AMEN LANG B! ENOUGH!!!!)

M. Mark

KEVJACK, that is a very powerful statement. I would like to expand your point number one. I think the reason so many black people voted for this ballot is because we nare INVISIBLE. We as black gay men and lesbians continually HIDE AND GO ON THE DL and are afraid to be out. If more family members saw their own cousins and sons were gay they might think diferently.

I also want to say REV KEV is very prophetic I wish I could go to your church!

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