Thursday, October 2, 2008

LGBT HISTORY: Queers Read This/I Hate Straights

This is probably one of those moving pieces I have ever read. It moved me to call myself queer. I cry everytime I read it for its beauty and anger. It was originally printed in 1990 and has recently found itself a nice little rebirth here on the 'net.

Don't be angry, heterosexuals. It's like the black panther party... it's here for us :-).
How can I tell you. How can I convince you, brother,sister that your life is in danger: That everyday you wake up alive, relatively happy, and a functioning human being, you are committing a rebellious act. You as an alive andfunctioning queer are a revolutionary.

There is nothing on this planet that validates, protectsor encourages your existence. It is a miracle you are standing here reading these words. You should by all rights be dead. Don't be fooled, straight people own the world andthe only reason you have been spared is you're smart, lucky or a fighter.

Straight people have a privilege that allows them to do whatever they please and fuck without fear. But not only do they live a life free of fear; they flaunt their freedom inmy face. Their images are on my TV, in the magazine I bought, in the restaurant I want to eat in, and on thestreet where I live. I want there to be a moratorium onstraight marriage, on babies, on public displays ofaffection among the opposite sex and media images that promote heterosexuality. Until I can enjoy the same freedomof movement and sexuality, as straights, their privilegemust stop and it must be given over to me and my queer sisters and brothers. Straight people will not do this voluntarily and so they must be forced into it. Straights must be frightened into it. Terrorized into it. Fear is the most powerful motivation. No one will give us what wedeserve. Rights are not given they are taken, by force ifnecessary. It is easier to fight when you know who your enemy is. Straight people are your enemy. They are your enemy
when they don't acknowledge your invisibility andcontinue to live in and contribute to a culture that killsy ou. Every day one of us is taken by the enemy. Whether it's an AIDS death due to homophobic government inaction or a lesbian bashing in an all-night diner (in a supposedly lesbian neighborhood).


Being queer is not about a right to privacy; it is about the reedom to be public, to just be who we are. It means everyday fighting oppression; homophobia, racism, misogyny,the bigotry of religious hypocrites and our own self-hatred.(We have been carefully taught to hate ourselves.) And now of course it means fighting a virus as well, and all those homo-haters who are using AIDS to wipe us off the face ofthe earth. Being queer means leading a different sort of life. It's not about the mainstream, profit-margins,patriotism, patriarchy or being assimilated. It's not about executive directors, privilege and elitism. It's about being on the margins, defining ourselves; it's about gender-fuck and secrets, what's beneath the belt and deep insidethe heart; it's about the night. Being queer is "grassroots" because we know that everyone of us, every body,every cunt, every heart and ass and dick is a world ofpleasure waiting to be explored. Everyone of us is a world of infinite possibility. We are an army because we have to be. We are an army because we are so powerful. (We have so much to fight for; we are the most precious of endangered species.) And we are an army of lovers because it is we whoknow what love is. Desire and lust, too. We invented them.We come out of the closet, face the rejection of society,face firing squads, just to love each other! Every time we fuck, we win. We must fight for ourselves (no one else isgoing to do it) and if in that process we bring greater freedom to the world at large then great. (We've given somuch to that world: democracy, all the arts, the concepts of love, philosophy and the soul, to name just a few giftsfrom our ancient Greek Dykes, Fags.) Let's make every spacea Lesbian and Gay space. Every street a part of our sexual geography. A city of yearning and then total satisfaction.A city and a country where we can be safe and free and more.We must look at our lives and see what's best in them, seewhat is queer and what is straight and let that straight chaff fall away! Remember there is so, so little time. And I want to be a lover of each and every one of you. Next year, we march naked.

The full text is here, and a great analysis of it as a manifesto can be found on this now defunct blog.

1 comment:

Dan said...

The person who wrote that piece was obviously a bigoted Nazi, burning with hatred for his fellow man.

Go ahead, pretend that being "oppressed" makes that sort of hatred all right.

It's the same impulse that lead to Auschwitz.