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10 August 2009

Comments

Donna Izlar

You people whine too much and want to many things --its not going to happen. You only care about your own community. You are all selfish and self centered [...]

Homophobic and bigoted much? I guess you missed the previous story about a gay man beaten into a coma and now paralyzed by gaybashers. Oh and please enjoy your minimum wage job at Piggly Wiggly. -RM

Kevin Perez

Ravenback:

I didn't mean for my post to sound like an attack or anything and I deeply respect your opinion but the truth is I believe African Americans and Latinos are very hypocritical when it comes to complaining about discrimination. I single out these two specific groups because BOTH have a history of not only being oppressed by larger American society but victims of European Imperalisim as well. Both groups continue to use the customs, attitudes, and religious instituions that were used to oppress them against others they deem beneath them. That group would LGBT or those who don't conform to gender norms. That leads me to my frustration group with these two specific groups and the common belief that being a POC and LGBT is exclusive. And once more, the ridiculous ideals of masculinity and the like.

LGBT Asian Americans do suffer discrimination, I know that especially when they come very traditionalist cultures but you might as well point out what Arabs go through if they're LGBT in the Middle East. Also, on discussion of Asians, many countries in Asia were also colonies of European nations, so that's another group of people using the methods of oppression that were used against them unto others.

And quite frankly, you and I know that African Americans and Latinos are the poster children for racial discrimination and police brutality in this country. Both communities look down THEIR OWN LGBT kin and treat them like a seperate group of people. Not human enough and not one of us. The hypocritical thing about that is both Blacks and Latinos are two paticular groups that complain about discrimination, being excluded, being denied housing and job opprotunities, continue to speak against larger society for their prejudices while doing the PRECISE thing to LGBT of color, only in the face of religion and gender-conformity.

Both groups sugar-coat racial unity and community unity, idealogies that, again, hypocritcally excludes LGBT. Latinos and Blacks don't want White people on their case but feel they're entitled to look down on LGBT because they're not part of the community, even though LGBT of color face the same obstacles that Heteros do?

Let me put this way:

LGBT of color are prone to dropping out of high school more, prone to more violence (including domestic), prone to discrimination in the fields of education, housing, employment and God knows what else, prone to being victims of hate crimes and police brutality, being homeless.... and etc...

Do Hetero Blacks and Latinos care? No. Their attitude is that we bring all that upon ourselves and that it's punishment from God for our life style. Typical, hiding behind religion. Because if what I mentioned above was applied to Heterosexual Blacks and Latinos, those would be the poster children of a oppresion in ethnic communities. They'd be the victims but when its LGBT, Blacks and Latinos find fault.

It's okay for Heterosexual Blacks and Latinos to complain about discrimination and be the poster children of racisim and discrimination in this country but when LGBT of color assert themselves as equals and part of the community as well, it's time to put us in our place. That is being a scapegoat and a whipping boy for hetero Blacks and Latinos.

Which leads me to another point that we have to hold Black and Latino straights accountable the way we do for gay racists and racists in general.

Ravenback

@ Kevin Perez

Again, let's agree that we disagree on some issues. But one thing we can agree on is that those blacks and Latinos who don't care about us do so for religious and cultural reasons. So if some people look at us as abominations and corruptors of God's plans, then why would they be interested in our fights against discrimination, poverty, brutality and so on? Those who fight along side us do so because they truly care about us. Those you don't can go to hell. Hopefully, we can agree on that point.


@ Donna Izlar

Obviously, your comment doesn't fit into the conversation here. Take your comment elsewhere and leave us selfish and self-centered people alone so we can whine and complain about people like you.

Brian

I agree it was a good essay and raised some interesting issues.

I have to take exception to those people here who recoiled when others talk about racism in connection with homophobia from people of color.

While racism does not excuse homophobia (just like racism doesn't excuse any crime or antisocial behavior), it does provide a context for the behavior and can point us in the direction for how to solve it. An analysis of homophobia cannot be separated from an analysis of racism--they have to be understood as playing off of one another and intrinsically connected. Otherwise, we will have queer people of color who are constantly pressured to emphasize one social aspect of themselves over the other.

So yes, every time homophobia among people of color is mentioned, I do think people need to have racism (and I'm not just talking about "racism in the LGBT community") in mind. It's not an "excuse," it's an understanding that it is what is necessary to deal with the problem.

Dalton

>>You people whine too much and want to many things --its not going to happen. You only care about your own community. You are all selfish and self centered<<<

Donna, you are so hateful and so intolerant. If anyone is selfish it would be you. And I bet you also "praise" Jesus with those hateful lips, too. You're probably bitter 'cuz you ain't doing more with your lips. SMH

DW Jazzlover

Hello Dear Brothers, I really appreciate this blog and each of you..
I am 65 years old and I have seen so much from pre Stonewall segregation,to post Stonewall segregation,I have marched on Washington, I was active in Aids health care when no one else was in the South, I have lost many people along the way, but I never gave up.

But today I am sad and tired, because I realize peace in our community is about as possible as peace in tha Middle east.

Hate is Hate and it feeds upon itself. Like Brother James Baldwin I have moved outside the country because I have just had enough hate..of any type.

This blog and your feelings are a micro view of everything in this world that affects each and every group of franchised or disenfranchised people.

I hear no one in this place counting their blessings...I personally don't think American whites will ever be totally accepting of others, as my grandmother would say"it is just not in their make-up".

Brothers keep the quest but do it with open eyes and a open heart...
Love to you all,there are some really brilliant B-brothers in here...

Kevin Perez

"So if some people look at us as abominations and corruptors of God's plans, then why would they be interested in our fights against discrimination, poverty, brutality and so on?"

Because how they view and percive LGBT of color and LGBT in general is exactly the way people of the ruling class or elite view Blacks and Latinos. Both groups ought to know better and should be more compassionate and sympathetic to LGBT of color of all people, not just the mainstream LGBT community. To be LGBT and Black or LGBT and Latino does change the fact the we are still part of the community and they of all people aren't anybody to look down on anybody, regardless of cultural and religious reasons. We're on the same bandwagon with Straight Blacks and Latinos but won't to deny us the equality and treatment they want from a society that hates them as much as they hate us.

They only want us around to be their whipping boys and nothing more. You have to admit that were the focus of "community outrage", that is a scapegoat. Would you tolerate some Black, middle class, Baptist, heterosexual male, his wife and maybe his parents belittling you and making you feel like, who is also Black, like you're beneath them or some "invader" of their precious air space?

LGBT of color have to worry about three things: Racism by White gays that don't care for LGBT of color, heterosexuals that are proud and have no shame for their hate, malice and bigotry and social tolerance for their LGBT kin and than larger society that hates just everybody. Add in a physically disabled lesbian or a trasngendered person, you're looking at BENEATH the social ladder.

That is more overwelming than what heterosexuals deal with on a daily basis. To be a Heterosexual is priviledge itself as well as telling others what's "wrong" with them because they're not "normal" or "straight".

Kevin Perez

And thanks for the feedback, Ravenback, you make interesting points that have me thinking.

Chitown Kev

Love, love the dialogue betwen Ravensback and Kevin Perez (and even Brian got in on that). This is they typeof conversations that we need to have.

@Rod Mc-lol

I guess the Piggly Wiggly must be closed, that's why that homophobic troll came in here to get fed. Miss Thang will find a few crumbs but that's about it.

Kevin Perez

Chitown Kev:

I just believe Latinos and Blacks are very hypocritical when it comes to screaming discrimination. As if they have some sort of ownership over the word or something. That and how they continue fake ignorance on anything LGBT. That is why you will never convince me that the mainstream LGBT community (whatever that is) "needs" to reach out to POC. POC, I repeat, THEY damn well know the existence of LGBT in their schools, neighborhoods, communties, shops, parks and etc....I'll be damned if they don't have family, neighbors, close friends and etc... that aren't LGBT. The fact Latinos and Blacks view anybody whose gay as just that, gay, reflects a elitest way of thinking. They're not one of "us" but one of "them". The fact that LGBT of color are all on the same social-economic ladder, deal with racism, deal with violence, deal with police brutatlity, job discrimination and housing discrimination doesn't cross the mind of Heterosexual Blacks and Latinos. They see it as some sort of competion on which group of what people have it worse. THEY are the ones too selifsh to realize others have it worse and feel threaten by LGBT of color because they might take their status of "vitcims" or the most opprosed and be forced to address the actual and real issues that affect the communities.

Why else do you think religious institutions and the like single out LGBT? I don't think heterosexual Blacks and Latinos are being unfairly targeted at all. That's what they want to hear. That's what some of the biggest homophobes want to convince people of. They're just like everybody else. But given the constant demonization of LGBT by both groups, violence by straight people, violence by self-loathing butch queens, and the on-going cycle they feed us of self-hatred and belittling us whenever they get the chance to make themselves feel better and excluding us from the community and pride of our ethnicity and nationality, heterosexual Blacks and Latinos can deal with being the bad guys or a oppresive group of people just once. Compared due the constant antagonization LGBT of color go through, Heterosexuals really shouldn't talk about being "singled out" or "demonized". Activists of color should damn well be demanding POC reach out to their LGBT brother and sisters and let them know they are there for them and that they're all part of the same struggle the way they demand Whitey for reach to POC. For every alleged person that claims to be progressive and liberal when it comes to LGBT of color and their struggles, there many more that hate us and religious instituions that support us are too few.

I sound very emotional and angry but I can't help it. Personally, I'm more angry at Heterosexual Latinos than anybody else and Hetero Blacks to a degree. They make me feel like I have no existence, like I'm beneath them, like I'm a piece of crap, like I'm not meant to live all doing so in the name of God. That's why I hate the religious backgrounds of my people and Blacks.

I've thought of suicide or even going to one of the ex-gay churches but I'm too much of a coward for killing myself and I don't want to sacrifice what little diginity and self-respect. I have no idea how am I going to make in the real world. I'm tired of Homophobia. I'm tired of Blacks and Latinos and their bigotry and prejudice not being challenged while they hide behind the gay racism as an excuse to validate reasoing and I'm even more sick of so-called true Christians and Latinos and Blacks that "We're not all like that!".

How many times have I heard that in my 19 years of existence. I suffer from being in the closet and little dose of self-hate. I can't even talk to other POC about what I feel because I feel like they don't care or simply would be very judgemental. That's how most are. I have low self-estem about skin color (I'm a light skinned Puerto Rican, confused to be White), my appearance, my ethnicity and God knows what else.

This blog essenitaly is what has has made me able to let out what I really feel and stuff that I could never tell family or friends. I don't want to feel sorry for myself but holding back the pain and angery I feel isn't doing anything for me and pretending what I'm going through isn't a big deal is killing me even more.

Ravenback

@ Kevin Perez

"Would you tolerate some Black, middle class, Baptist, heterosexual male, his wife and maybe his parents belittling you and making you feel like, who is also Black, like you're beneath them or some "invader" of their precious air space?"

I don't deal with people like that. PERIOD! I don't let any man or woman have the power to belittle me. And I know that I'm not beneath anyone. I don't worry about what others think about me because their opinions don't matter. People don't validate who you are. Only you yourself do. I choose not to hang around trash that stinks up everything around them. So whatever their views are, I don't know or care because I'm not around them. People like that are poison, and would you drink poison knowing that it can kill you? Hell no, you wouldn't. So if you wouldn't why would spend time around that filth and allow them to berate you.

I was blessed to have a 10 year relationship with a wonderful and beautiful man. We made a life together. We would constantly express our love for each other in public by holding hands, embracing each other, and even kissing. I'm sure there were those who objected to our "demonstrations", but so what? I was never afraid of what they thought or what they might have done because I decide my own destiny. We as LGBT people have to stop being concerned about what others think. You can't control that. You can only control yourself. And I'll be damned before I allow some ignorant jerks to control my life. And if I have to die because of that, then at least I will die having lived a fulfilled life.

Chitown Kev

@Ravensback-Well said.

@Kevin Perez- Been there and have gone through precisely what you are going through now, including the suicidal thoughts and the "ex-gay" stuff. So have many of us.

It takes time and energy and patience and pain to build a supportive community for oneself; to be honest, I haven't gotten there entirely. But it takes every bit of Ravensback is talking about and I suspect Ravensback hasn't always been at that point. Neither have I. But you can get there.

Derrick from Philly

"....too much of a coward...."

Impossible. Your postings show a lot of courage and (as others have said) SINCERITY. A coward is usually also a phony. There aint nothin' phony about you.

KEVIN, I dealt with gay-bashing probably before your parents were born. That gay-bashing came from black folks. By the 1980s, I knew if I didn't leave my old neighborhood--they'd kill me. I aint joking. So, I left, but the damage was done--I do hold on to some bitterness, but I try to use humor and little humility to keep from becoming a nasty, mean ol' queen (some people would say I've lost that battle....the b_tches.)

But along with the gay-bashing from blacks, I also had a few race-bashing incidents from white thugs (being at the wrong place at the wrong time). That racial violence taught me that no matter how bad my relations with straight black folks may have been--there is still danger from white racists.

I don't want you to give into bitterness, KEVIN PEREZ. I hope you've found/find close friends whom you can confide in. For gay people (black, white, Latino, whatever) having reliable friends is the most important--the most life-saving aspect we can have in our lives...hell, to keep us alive. I hope you find good friends, KEVIN, no matter what color, ethnicity, gender they are.

Vin

[RACIST/PROP 8 TROLL/BANNED -RM]

Ravenback

@ Kevin Perez

Your pain is troubling me so much. I am very concerned about your safety and health. Please don't allow others to make you feel bad about yourself. You are a wonderful young man trying to find his way in life. And it isn't always that easy. But it is very possible. Please start with focusing on yourself and forgetting about others. What are you doing to improve upon your life? Are you going to college to get an education to gain more upward mobility? Throw all your energy into making yourself and maybe you won't have time to concern yourself with others.

Kevin, you aren't a coward for not committing suicide. You are a strong warrior for resisting that temptation and choosing to face what lies ahead of you. There is so much positive and uplifting life out there for you to find. There are people out there who understand what you are facing, and they are willing to embark upon the journey of life with you. Do you have any friends that you can honestly talk to? Is there any place you can go where people will welcome you with open arms? As Derrick said, having reliable friends is very important. I know many people who live in the SF Bay Area who come from Mississippi, Missouri, Kansas, Idaho, Kentucky, Alabama, Brazil, Iran, Nigeria, the Republic of Congo, and so on. They left their families behind because they needed to find peace of mind and soul. Their new families are a collection of friends that I am proud to be a part of.

In the end, you may have to consider moving away from where you are right now. Where you live doesn't make who you are. I know your community and ethnicity is very important to you, but a what cost do you attempt to remain in a place that causes you so much pain? That's why I asked earlier, what are you doing to improve your life? The power is in your hands, Kevin. And by the way you eloquently express yourself, I know you can overcome anything you set your mind to. It's up to you. You can hold life at the balls, and squeeze them until you get what you want. Just imagine squeezing some of those butch-queens by the balls. They probably would enjoy it.

outsider

While I do not deny that there is racsim in gay communitities around the country, I am not so sure that it is as pervasive as some may think. I did hear about what happened in LA after Prop.8 and I was sickened. However, I have always seen LA/West Hollywood in that light. From my experience, gay racism is not a major issue in NY. We have more class issues in the gay community. They do not care what color you are as long as you have the money, beauty, elan and fashions to fit in.
I do believe that the reaction after Prop.8 is somewhat due to the voilent homophobia expressed by certain sectors of the African American community; first and foremost the hip hop, reggae, dancehall scene and the ex-gay pastor, Ms Donnie. A great deal of white gays are aware of what LBGT people of color go through in their neighborhoods. Since gays are usually the first to move into less priveledged areas, they have experienced it first hand. They also hear it in every other hip hop and dancehall record. "FAGGOTT" "BOOM BOOM BYE BYE" While the African American community should not be blamed for Prop. 8., I can see where some of the irrational anger and venom is coming from. There are many homophobic whites, but they have not been as vocal and nasty in mainstream pop culture. There are many African Americans who will let you know that they are homophobic on the street in NYC. They will stare, make comments, scream at you to your face. I have experinced first hand living in Harlem. Frankly, I could not take it any more. I felt like anyday some fool would come for me. An associate of mine lived in Harlem and a rasta cold spit in his face for NO REASON!!!Therefore, it is not hard for white gays to think a great deal of black people hate them and want to kill them. That is all they hear and see! They know not to go to the carribean & Africa, they know not to go to the hood. For them it would be like an African American in the sixties going into the deep south. I know that is hyperbole, but we need to think about what is going on in our community before we aver that gay racism is on the rise. Perhaps African American reactionary homphobia is on the rise!
Furthermore, I believe that it is the responsibility of gays of color to approach the issue in our own communities. Let's be real! Do you think that some white gay man is really going to venture into the hood to talk about tolerance. GIVE ME A BREAK!! He would get stomped and humilitated! It is up to us...and if we are too scared to do it ourselves...well that should tell us something. NO HATE at all I am just trying to keep it real. I am not trying to debunk Mr. Spearman at all. I am just trying to balance his ideas with the reality I have experinced in my life.

outsider

oh sorry for the type-o's! Editing in the litle box is hard on my eyes.LOL!

Rod Mc

@ Kevin Perez:

I'm trying to reach you via email. Not sure do I have the right address. Please email me at rod.mccullom at gmail.com.

Thanks and please do this. There are several great people who want to talk to you. -RM

D.

James Baldwin preferred white men.
Bayard Rustin preferred white men.
Barbara Jordan preferred white women.
Audre Lorde preferred white women.

To this day...many so called gay black "leaders" prefer white gay men and have them as husbands, lovers, etc and are getting their SWIRL on with Chad and Becky!!!

Talk about self hatred...we could go down the list of all of our gay black "leaders" and see how much time do they REALLY spend in the black or black gay communities.

And sorry but black gays cannot be "racist", we have neither the mean nor institutions to systematically oppress whites. Sorry. We can be prejudiced but not 'racist'...but sometimes white gays call blacks 'racist' just because we prefer our own sometimes, like with a black pride.

sonofabutch

James Baldwin preferred white men.
Bayard Rustin preferred white men.
Barbara Jordan preferred white women.
Audre Lorde preferred white women...

Please DO NOT demonize these people as if it was as simple as black & white...All on this list were rejected as not being "objects of beauty" or desire by their "own" people...stop making it sound like they hated blacks or refused to be intimate with them...this is part of the problem...

Chitown Kev

Actually, james baldwin wrote extensively about some of the black men that he did have relationships with.

@D. And maybe some black gays don't spend so much time in those black and black gay communities because of tired sissies like you who want dictate what it is to be black and who refer to anything not in your manual (which usually includes going to a gay bashing church) as self-hatred.

Maybe some of those people didn't feel like putting up with some of the homophobic garbage that some black communities spew.

Speaking for myself, I know I don't. I define what it is to be a gay black man in this society for me. I don't do it form Sister Erma, Pastor so-and-so or anyone else.

And for the record, I don't have a racial preference when it comes to whom I partner with.

D.

Or we could talk about certain prominent gay black activists who are on TV and on the blogs who are " "objects of beauty" and desire by their "own" people" who have secret white BFs and or married these men?

Hmm and yeah..."I don't have a racial preference" usually translates as "I prefer "anything but black".

I'm just sayin' this to the Cristiano Ronaldo and Chad White loving "brothas" on TowleRod 2.0!


Ravenback

@ Rod Mc

Thank you for trying to get in touch with Kevin Perez. I hope you are successful in reaching him and putting him in contact with those than can help him. I was away from the computer for awhile, but he was definitely on my mind. Please let us know if you were successful. My prayers are with him. Thanks Rod for all that you do.

kayman

Outsider, do you even know what you are talking about? Racism and homophobia goes both ways, but it is more prevalent on coming from whites to black SGLs because there is a flat out rejection of so many in a number of gay establishments. The racism with GLBTs tend to have multiple facets to them ranging from economics to social interactions (which includes dating, etc.).

Chitown Kev

@D

You know what, I can't stop you from thinking what you wish nor can I or will I hold myself accountable for anyone else's decisions as far as whom they partner with save mine.

I totally reject you and those of your ilk who enjoy playing the "blacker than thou" card. If you have resentments against those gay black brothers for their choices than that is your problem problem and not theirs. Or mine.

And actually, anyone knows me here (or on the white gay blogs for that matter) knows that if I preferred "anything but black" I would say exactly that.

I will say that "thug types" of all types turn me off (black, white, or Latino). So as far as I am concerned, you can take your "blacker than thou": lectures away from me.

The comments to this entry are closed.

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