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10 August 2009

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King Drive

Love, love, love Doug Spearman.

Great actor and great role model.

nathans

Wow not only is he cute sexy and hawt, he is intelligent too

My kind of man

Luther

Bless you Mr Spearman for telling it like it is in the real world! this is a topic that so many want to look the other way on, but, in reality he told the truth, and, sadly his truth will go unnoticed outside of the POC communities who are taking the brunt of discrimination from straights and racism with in the glbt community and just left out in any way for the fight for equality and basic human dignity.

And after the Prop 8 debacle and all the racial slurs spewed in front of TV camera and online and still going full steam on almost all non-black gay owned blogs, with its all those blacks fault, this is a message that really needs to get out.

Dalton

>>Spearman adds: "It’s a different world for white Americans than it is for black, brown, and yellow Americans. Especially if you have education, income, and available resources. And we’re finally beginning to openly talk about the differences."<<

(waving church fan)

Testify my brother!
But as Luther said, this is the dialogue that we need but is going unheard in the mostly white mainstream LGBT community. But we have to keep pressing on!

But by all means become active in mainstream LGBT groups (like HRC) and black LGBT concerns.

Thank you Doug Spearman!

Anthony in Nashville

I printed out the HRC Equality Forward report last week, didn't know they had a blog. I'm glad that they are making steps to address the concerns of people of color.

Kevin Perez

"But then again, when did a group of gay activist ever show up to make sure that black and Latino/a neighborhoods had decent schools or safe streets, or march for union job protection?"

And when did African Americans and Latinos ever make sure that their OWN LGBT communities where getting the same equality they demand from larger society? You want to talk about hypocrisy, let's look at the fact the POC continue to feign ignorance on LGBT issues. It is a pathetic excuse. I'm tired of having to hear about White people reaching out. Why is there never a discussion on how African Americans, Latinos and POC in general continue to scapegoat LGBT WITHIN the "communitiy"? The abuse and discrimination that is directed toward those who refuse to conform to gender norms or stereotypical views of gender idenity and sexuality. What about Straights who refuse to look at LGBT of color as part of the "community" or a "brother", "sister". What does this guy have to say this about that? When have Straights ever reached to their LGBT kin that face racism and other forms of discrimination?

I am tired of constantly hearing about the need for Straight Blacks and Latinos being reached out because they damn well know there are LGBT of color. I'm sick of apologists using white gay racism to cover the the personal prejudices and bigotry that exist within in colored communities. Straights have to stop acting "surprised" or like their victims of ignorance when they willing choose to IGNORE us and pretend we don't exist or aren't worth a damn. What does Doug Spearman have to say about ethnic minorities who scream discrimination but have no issue with the marginalization LGBT of color face in this world. They view being gay as some sort of entity together.

It's a different world for a transgendered Black man in a inner city than it is for a Heterosexual Black man with a wife, kids, a good job and nice house in the suburbs of Atlanta. It always comes to White vs. Black or how gays are the only one who need to reach out to POC. You know, because heterosexual POC can't help out their LGBT kin, who face more discrimination and abuse then they do.

Derrick from Philly

"What does Doug Spearman have to say about ethnic minorities who scream discrimination but have no issue with the marginalization LGBT of color face in this world."

I'm sure Spearman would agree with you, Kevin. He doesn't like anti-gay hatred in black communities either. But the issue he's dealing with in his essay is racist behavior among white gays.

Kevin Perez

"I'm sure Spearman would agree with you, Kevin. He doesn't like anti-gay hatred in black communities either. But the issue he's dealing with in his essay is racist behavior among white gays."

Once again, this is being made into White vs. Black issue. I'm talking about ethnic minorities in general. Gay racism does not explain or rationalize the ridiculous violence, hostility and animousity LGBT face within colored communities. That, to me, is cheap excuse for "the gheys" do the work and activisim while straights proclaims themselves as victims of "gay racism" as a means of justification of their homophobia. The fact they view being gay is exclusive is something that is equally problematic is needs to be address within ethnic minorities.

So many are jumping on the "It's the truth" bandwagon while victimzing Straight Blacks and Latinos who don't deserve any form of victimization because they probably treat LGBT the way they don't want to be treated by larger society. And that BS of activists nothing reaching to Blacks and Latinos can be applied vice versa. POC can have more compassion and sympathy for their LGBT community but don't because, I repeat, THEY DON'T CARE. Do you expect to me believe that coloured communities have never met or interacted with fems, butch and LGBT in general? In big cities like New York, L.A., Chicago, Miami and the like...Blacks, Latinos and other POC have never met or have family that LGBT of color that are in their neighborhoods, schools and on the street? BS, they know they exist and they have met people they just don't view them as part of the community or "one of us"

Dough Spearman does not mention any of that. He should address the bigotry and social intolerance about coloured communities towards gays and minoirites within minorities. It's just the typical rheoritc of "gay racism" that Straights as can see themselves as victims while LGBT are demonized as opporisive and "racist".

Once more, to be LGBT is to been a different entity together. I don't care for gay elite racism because I have very little to do with the mainstream community and frankly, I'm more concerned with walking in my neighborhood without being percived as a easy target and "one of them" that results in violence against me. You know, the neighborhoods and streets that Spearman is refering too?

Kevin Perez

And God, do I wish I had spell check on this.

On the side note, why don't POC reach out the LGBT of color in Black, Latino, Asian and other ethnic communities. You're more prone to racism, job discrimination, housing discrimination, violence and pretty much the short end of society in general. Not to mention violence by the "community" and family members too. Where are the Heterosexual Blacks, Latinos and the like that keep inisting the mainstream LGBT community reach out to POC reach out to LGBT of color? Why don't LGBT of color demand the same expectations of dialouge from their Heterosexuals "brothers and sisters" as they do from the mainstream LGBT? Seems to me the attitude is that only the mainstream LGBT community has any work to do.

Me thinks heterosexuals think they don't have to do anything but sit on their @$$es while the "gheys" do the work they should be doing as well.

Robert M.

Weston, 44, is one of an overwhelming number – 70 percent – of black voters in California who voted for Proposition 8 and helped secure its passage, according to exit polling conducted by Edison Media Research and Mitofsky International.

African Americans, energized by Barack Obama's presidential bid, boosted their numbers at the polls this year to 10 percent of the state's electorate, up from 6 percent in 2004. [...]

http://www.sacbee.com/capitolandcalifornia/story/1378391.html

Nice try to pseudo-rationalize your racism with ONE exit poll. The 70% meme was later debunked many times, such as by political scientists Ken Sherrill of CUNY-Hunter College and Patrick Egan of New York University. The figure is more likely closer to 57% to 59%. The Sherill-Egan study sampled precinct-by-precinct results and not surprisingly concluded Prop 8 passed due to overwhelming margins in very white counties, such as Kern, Bakersfield and Orange.

Not sure did you learn statistics in community college, but an "exit poll" is far less reliable than a precinct-by-precinct analysis of county voting results. But you keep telling yourself that one exit poll is a "fact". -RM

Kevin Perez

57% voted. Not 70%. Get yor facts straight and stop the lies. It's nothing to be proud about but stop exaggearting the numbers. Never trust polls!

Chitown Kev

@Kevin Perez

I agree, I don't like it when the issue is raised and either one side (black/Latino homophobia) or the other side is talked about (white gay racism); rarely the entire double whammy. Of course, that can be a bit too much.

Of course, I have to be honest and say that with the exception of the post Prop 8 racism I've personally experienced very little white gay racism. I don't doubt anyone else's testimony; in fact, I think the 2 biggest reasons for that are:

1) I'm in recovery and have been since my mid-20's so I very rarely do the bar scene. i imagine that's where a lot of gay white racism takes place.

2) I look like a straight up geeky guy, not someone that would fulfill anyone's Mandingo fantasy.

Chitown Kev

Robert M.

Those numbers have been debunked for so long. And so what.

Are you a white gay racist or a Mormon trying to further the divide?

Dallas Cowboy

@ Robert M:

Is there air conditioning in your trailer? Or are you a gay WeHo or Chelsea queen who reads Towleroad or Queerty?

Sometimes it's so very hard to tell difference online!

Dallas Cowboy

((Not sure did you learn statistics in community college, but an "exit poll" is far less reliable than a precinct-by-precinct analysis of county voting results.))

ROFLMAO @ Rod. Work it out!

a. mcewen

What we may be dealing with here is forced homogenization. The lgbt community on the whole has to realize that there are different facets of the community - different in how they have to deal with being an lgbt and different in how they celebrate the lgbt culture. It all boils down to a lack of respect. My experiences as a black gay man is totally different from the experiences of a white gay man, but we both deserve the same amount of respect and the same volume of voice for the flava that we bring to the lgbt community.

For too long, many of us in the lgbt community take these things for granted and assume that we are going in the same direction. We all want the same things (happiness and peace along with our civil rights) but we take different roads to attain them.

White gays may see marriage equality as the most pressing issue, while black gays may see healthcare as something more pressing. There is no reason why one has to be picked over the other as a pressing cause because both are equally important.

Sorry if I rambled on a bit.

Luther

ChiKev, nothing wrong with being geeky :). But, sadly, its not just gay bars where the racism is spewed and since most of the gay bars are pretty much irrelevant these days anyway. I've seen you trying to teach tolerance on a couple of gay blog's that make a meeting of klansmen seem tame whenever a black face shows up, no matter if its a positive byline or not, and it seldom sinks in, no matter how rational and polite you are. Until the so called mainstream gay community addresses this issue that many gays of color can relate to, how in the world will they ever get to the straight folks who have issues with gays? Its still the elephant in the room and Mr Spearman has bought it back into the mix.

TheRevKev

Rod,

This is so brilliantly timed!

I was just on Rev. Al Sharpton's Show last week and the subject was "ARE GAY RIGHTS CIVIL RIGHTS?" and the conversation was so heated because the callers couldn't wrap their brains or mouths around a Black Gay man having this conversation. When Black people have had to have this conversation about rights and support and such, they were always "talking" to White gay men who piqued every issue that they have with racism, race, inequality, white male privilege and so many other topics.

When they have to listen to a Black gay boy, who served in the church, sat in BTU and Sunday School classes, MC'd youth events, sang in the choir, did them proud by being the 1st in the church to leave for college and who loves the Lord with all his heart and soul say I LOVE GOD AND I LOVE MY BLACK PEOPLE AND I AM NOT GOING ANYWHERE, the conversation changes!

It's a powerful exchange, to the point that I have talked to my white counterparts about not only SHUTTING UP ABOUT TRYING TO TALK CIVIL RIGHTS WITH BLACK PEOPLE, but actually STEP BACK AND LEAVE THE ROOM, so they we can REALLY have this out.

BET is about to do a special on Homophobia and the Black Community and they will be in our services at Unity Fellowship Church New Brunswick on Sunday. It's going to a new journey for our people who really want to think, as they cast it in Hollywood, that when we say we are gay, we give up black and start dating white guys and all start being different. This is US--Black, Latin, Asian, Biracial--and very proud of who we are and who we love!

The white male privilege that can come up in conversations with many white gay men--and trust me I have been in rooms from Montclair to Trenton in NJ--is crazy sometimes. When there is more talking than listening, nothing gets done and no one feels heard.

So here we are, at the brink of a new day, where we as Gay Men of Color must take the lead on many issues because our people can't hear when they have racism staring them directly in the face, saying "WE GAVE YOU OBAMA, YOU OWE US," which was the TONE that spewed out of the mouths of Whites in CA when Prop 8 exploded! They never talked to the white woman who owns a restaurant in the heart of West Hollywood who ALWAYS gave money to against their rights. They didn't talk to the friends who "like them" but don't "agree with them," who gave money. They thought it easier to come outside of their comfort zones and start pointing fingers at black folks. WELL ENOUGH!

ENOUGH, BLACK PEOPLE!

ENOUGH, WHITE GAYS!

ENOUGH. THERE'S A NEW CONVERSATION IN THE ROOM AND YOU'LL NEED TO SHUT THE HELL AND THE HATE UP AND LISTEN!

Ravenback

There are so many angles to homophobia that can be explored. But I often find that homophobia can be compared to child molestation and domestic violence. Just like child molestation and domestic violence, homophobia cuts across all ethnic, economic, social lines. For instance, we know that domestic violence is just as much a problem amongst LGBT couples as it is amongst straight couples. So why wouldn't we expect that homophobia is just as much of a problem within the black and Latino communities as it is within the white and Asian communities?

People who don't like and respect gays don't see it as a civil rights issue. So why should blacks be more accepting of us when they see it as an unwelcomed human trait just like Hispanics, Asians, and whites do? Do not in any way try to interpret what I said as an excuse for homophobia because it isn't. I'm just stating a cold harsh reality. People spend so much time trying to argue how different blacks, whites, Asians, and Hispanics are, that we often fail to recognize our similarities. Hate doesn't have a pigmentation or a bank account attached to it. Blacks have been the victims of hate, yet they hate gay folks. Gays have been a victim of hate, but white gays hate black gays and black gays hate Latin gays. Isn't that interesting how that works? The hated have people they actually hate.

I don't mean to minimize the problems that have been raised by others on this thread, but hate, disrespect, and intolerance are equal opportunity employers. They will hire anyone who agrees with them no matter if you are black, white, Asian, Hispanic, Native American, Protestant, Baptist, Catholic, Muslim, atheist, agnostic, rich poor, middle class, a lawyer, a doctor, a scientist, a ditch-digger, or even a child molester or a batterer.

Doug Spearman

Hey - If I can jump in and clear up something - I was talking about racism on all sides within the lgbt community - black, white, asian, hispanic, we're all busting each other's ass's needlessly. I was walking down the street here in LA with some of my black gay brothers and they started ragging on Asian boys - I was shocked. And if you date someone who's not black you will hear about it from some of us - its a sword that cuts everyone who comes near it - My point is to put it down. Period. And I'm sorry if I left out transgendered or those of us who feel the need to be something other than what we are biologically. I did say until we address all the ...isms, we're going to be fighting this fight.

Luther

Rev Kev, you know you had better preach! And Mr Spearman I agree all isms need to be erased, but, sadly these days it seems like it will never stop and seems as bad as it was if not worse in the age of the Internet where many of the isms run faster than fast. And, props to you Ravenback for breaking it all down as well.

Kevin Perez

Ravenback:

I disagree with you. The homophobia within Black and Latino communities is not the ordinary type or "normal". We're looking at two marginalized groups that keep stressing equality, justice and all that but these groups have shown their many attempts to deny LGBT their rights. Asian Americans and other POC have done this in some degree. White America hates on anybody who isn't heterosexual, Protestant, White and male. Period. Poor Whites are lesser evil than everybody else SO they deny anybody that doesn't fill that criteria. I don't agree with the statement that POC aren't anymore homophobic than Whites and etc... BECAUSE IT'S A LIE. Whites hate everybody. That's general attitude.

First of, when it comes to discussion of LGBT in colored communities, we have to accept that we are not humans in their eyes or even part of the community. You said yourself once we're an entity altogether. Secondly, the discussions of sexuality in Black and Latino communities go back to the times of European Colonialism where Europeans had a strict ideals of how defined race, sexuality and what was "right and wrong". So, no, given the unique history with Blacks and Latin Americans, it's amusing to here the statement of both groups not being any more homophobic.

Both these specific groups also have unrealistic expectations of defining what makes a man a man and a woman a woman, as well as idealistic views of masculinity and feminism that are primitive and gender conformisit. What I find amusing is that both Latinos and Blacks reject how this country defines them by their race, where they rank on the social ladder and negative stereotypes enforced on them but have no problem doing this type of marginalization to LGBT. And they justify this by demonizing LGBT and using religion as a weapon.

Both groups continue to view as being LGBT and a POC as exclusive. That is why they pretend to be ignorant about the LGBT colored communities and rationalize the homophobia. We are "them". We're not part of the community and anything that happens to us is because "we brought up ourselves" for our alleged "lifestyle".

LGBT of color, again, are prone to more discrimination than their heterosexual counterparts. They get the short end of society almost, especially if you're a tranny. It pisses of the straight colored communities because to them its all about Oppression Olympics, the fact there are people who generally worse off than themselves. That's why they desperately feign ignorance on LGBT matters.

They don't care. They don't care and that is why that don't do anything to help LGBT of color. The fact the straight Blacks and Latinos are stressing White folk to reach out to them, as well as many apologitc faggots too, means POC don't have anything to but find new ways to justify and rationalize homophobia.

Doug Spearman's comment struck a nerve with me when he said this:

"But then again, when did a group of gay activists ever show up to make sure that black and Latino/a neighborhoods had decent schools or safe streets, or march for union job protection?"

What he was actually saying, to me, was:

"But then again, when did a group of gay activists ever show up to make sure that heterosexual black and heterosexual Latino/a neighborhoods had decent schools or safe streets, or march for union job protection?"

That statement would've made more sense. Blacks and Latinos don't view LGBT Blacks and Latinos are part of the community, or even part of the struggle. He's victimizing a group people who denied the rights of LGBT of color and could've just a well done the same and march for understanding and compassion of the plight the LGBT of color face.

Why doesn't Spearman mention anything like that. We never any input from LGBT of color. It's always apologetic faggots excusing homophobia, White gay racists, heterosexist and religious zealots that seems to think they're entitled to speak anything relating anything gay and deny us our say.

Which reminds me, LGBT of color are discriminated by straight POC, the White gay elite and larger society in general. Where do straight people of color come off telling and accusing White gay racists of the very same things they've been doing to LGBT of color for a long time? It's wrong to hate on POC but it's okay for minorities to hate on gays?

I think colored communities don't care about LGBT of color. Why don't people like this guy, Doug Spearman, try to rationalize the homophobia in colored communities just to make heterosexual feel betters and treat them as if their victims of their bigotry and intolerance.

Being Puerto Rican, I don't need the f*cken approval of group of straight Nuyorican hoodrats that feel superior and belittle me because I'm gay. I don't need the input of Latinos in general telling me what being gay is like. I'm going to view the homophobes in colored communities as bad and dangerous and radical as the KKK, Neo-Nazis, especially the Black KKKristans and Latino KKKatholiks.

My interaction with White gays have usually been people from working class family backgrounds or straight out loud drag queens or fems. Nothing elitest of them and the only thing White is their color. These guys are like me, trying to survive in a world that hate us. They may have alleged "White privilege" but it only takes them off to some degree.

More than anything, I wish heterosexual POC would just STFU and listen to us. This includes the c*nts and apologetic faggots that keep insisting White gays do the reaching out while Latinos and Blacks not to be held accountable for their own prejudices and bigotry that's not called on by ANYBODY or the LGBT.


Kevjack

I think that Doug has really touched a nerve with this very good essay. I think the generational change in the community is part of the natural progression. As homosexuality gains more acceptance, white gays see less and less reason to engage on racial issues. Part of this may have to do with the fact that back in the day the only people who were out *were* radicals, or it may be just navel gazing.

One thing that struck me was that James Baldwin talked about this a long time ago. For white gays, their only degree of separation from power, but for us their are multiple degrees of separation, and this creates a lot of complex issues.

Hopefully, this will be the beginning of a long-overdue conversation where people actually listen to each other.

Ravenback

@ Kevin Perez

First off, my comment is not a defense of POC people or of Doug Spearman. These are my own words. If you had fully read or understood my comments, I clearly pointed out that homophobia is not specific to any particular group of people. Hate is not specific to any certain group of people. Homophobia is a form of hate.

I respect the passion that you have for your views, and I have stated that in the past. However, you seem to cling to an opinion that homophobia within the black and Latino population is greater than homophobia amongst other groups. I haven't spent any time trying to measure the levels of homophobia out there, but I have to disagree with you on that. I have met people of many different backgrounds and ethnicities, and the stories of homophobia have been very similar. But I find it quite interesting that you make a judgment on homophobia and racism amongst whites when your contacts with whites have been very limited according to your own words. I'm sure many can cite examples that challenge your viewpoint. And if you think that Asians don't have it bad, then you haven't spoken to enough gay Asians in your life.

It is quite clear that the two of us are at different points in our lives. I don't spend much time worrying or getting frustrated at how other people feel about me. The black community has never done anything for me, and their opinions don't affect me one way or the other. I choose to be around those who bring positivity, encouragement, and enlightenment to my life. Despite homophobia in the black community, it hasn't prevented me from forming relationships with many straight black folks as well as LGBT folks. Homophobia doesn't exist in my group of varied friends because I simply don't tolerate it. If someone doesn't like me for who I am, they can simply disappear from my sight. It's all a matter of drawing a line in the sand. As I've stated before, the POC issue is not a big deal or concern to me. Stay out of my way, and I will be more than happy to stay away from them.

The bottom line is: you and I don't see eye to eye on everything. And that's fine with me. I don't wish to misinterpret your words, but after reading many of your comments, you appear to carry more anger towards the black and Latino communities than I do. Again, I apologize it that is an unfair judgment. But I do admire and respect the passion that you have because it is genuine and sincere. I'm just at a place in my life where ignorant people don't bother me unless they block my path. And I am more concerned about the status of the LGBT community being secured under the law rather than garnering the sympathies of the population at large. Our rights are more important than whether or not someone likes us. The goodwill of others doesn't matter unless our rights are codified into law.

Chitown Kev

@Doug Spearman

Thank you, I did catch that part of it. And as much as I see people in Rod 2.0 (and other places)call white gay men on their racism (rightly), I have been very distressed at some of the anti-Latino comments (just to take one example) that I have seen on this very blog. When Eric Holder said that America is a nation of cowards when it comes to race, he didn't just specify white America. I heard what he said and I wish that President Obama hadn't rebuked him for that comment.

@Kevin Perez- Gosh, all Kevin's must think somewhat alike. :)

I've gotten to the point where I have little or no tolerance for straight black people that want to talk about white gay racism (especially online). I've begun to realize that they know little or nothing about about anyone (of any color) in the gay community and that most of them are homophobes flinging the race card. Then when I call them on it, I have to put up with being called a "house nigger." If straight POCs were supportive of the LGBTs in their own communities, that would be one thing. But they are not.

And like you, most of the white gays that I know are working class gays that are struggling just like me along with a few upper middle class white gays; I have been welcomed time and again into their homes.

One thing about me: I don't play hierarchies with the various ways in which I am oppressed in this society. I don't put the black first and the gay second or vice versa.

I agree Kevjack, Spearman's essay was good in may ways.

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