Wednesday, June 27, 2007

A quick response to awol...

A certain awol left a comment on a post that a bitch found worthy of further exploration.

Awol wrote about his issues as a young gay black man trying to decide whether to embrace the gay community. Specifically, he wrote that he has found it “difficult to deal with the Eurocentrism, materialism, and elitism in the community”.

The club groweth (wink).

When I read this comment I couldn’t help but think that the response is more worthy of dissertation than a post...and if this bitch had the strength for a dissertation my happy black ass would have a doctorate.

Sigh.

Here goes...

A bitch is a student of culture. I have observed communities that would never define themselves as a community and others forever speaking of themselves as communities yet hardly resembling the strong vibrant community they speak of being.

The thing is, Eurocentrism is woven into the fabric of America. A forensic examination would find that shit everywhere…like blood splatter on a wall, one can wash at it but the residue remains.

But for some reason people expect that residue will not be present in the LGBT community.

Which is beyond odd, because no group is easier to seduce with the trappings of power than the group just witnessing all that glitter on vivid display.

Blink.

Which is why the elitism that turns you off is so glaringly apparent….why the materialism that fails to jive with your individual value system is so unavoidable….and why too often the very community that speaks of being welcoming stands with one hand beckoning and the other one signing for you to fuck off and stay put.


Alas, we can not change others...a bitch is working on a spell, but so far no dice (wink). We can change ourselves and how we react to others, which is why your question has more to do with you than anything else.

Now listen, there is no law that says you have to socialize with any set group of people. This bitch prefers a diverse mix of friends myself. But don't discount the existence of common causes...or the fact that there are a lot of folks just as tired of all that bullshit as you are.

Know thyself...find your space above and beyond all the definitions and cliques...and then step up and be heard, brother awol!

Shit.

And don't let me hear someone has done you wrong 'cause my ass will be in Baltimore 'round September and I may pack my baseball bat (wink).

6 comments:

awol said...

Spot On! I realize that most of the issues I face are in my own mind. The critical point you made was 'know thyself'. I obviously have some work to do on my self-esteem.

I know that the community in many ways is just a reflection of American society writ large. I'm only 24 but I long for days of mass protest and the brotherhood/siterhood of struggle for equality. Equality for all, meaning the rejection of racism, classisim, homophobia etc.

I really appreciate your thoughts on this. I have been checking the blog constantly since I wrote the original comment for your thoughts on the matter.

Anyway, thanks alot for having my back. Power to the people.

marc said...

It might also be the (false) hope as a young gay person that this "community" of people, who didn't get the breathng room they have now without putting up a fight, would be free of the usual crap that roams in the heterosexual world.

When having to figure out your sexuality and your position in society, family and circle of friends, you challenge practically everything that others (read; many straights) take for granted.

As such you expect that ALL gays, lesbians etc, do the same type of thinking and come to the same results.

Unfortunately, this is not the case. Just as in the "straight" world, you have people on the gays side of life that just looove materialism, who think conservative, who like powerplays etc.

Even when I did some work in a social support group for gays, you get to know them in all types and characters, and indeed, sometimes it's just an overdose of gayness and cliché's.

As Miss Shark-Fu stated, you better balance your circle of friends and environments. It's the dosage that determines whether you'll have a healthy experience or not. And it's you who decides in the end what you put up with or not.

Hopefully my attempt to put this down in English is understandable enough.

Cheers
marc

marc said...

It might also be the (false) hope as a young gay person that this "community" of people, who didn't get the breathng room they have now without putting up a fight, would be free of the usual crap that roams in the heterosexual world.

When having to figure out your sexuality and your position in society, family and circle of friends, you challenge practically everything that others (read; many straights) take for granted.

As such you expect that ALL gays, lesbians etc, do the same type of thinking and come to the same results.

Unfortunately, this is not the case. Just as in the "straight" world, you have people on the gays side of life that just looove materialism, who think conservative, who like powerplays etc.

Even when I did some work in a social support group for gays, you get to know them in all types and characters, and indeed, sometimes it's just an overdose of gayness and cliché's.

As Miss Shark-Fu stated, you better balance your circle of friends and environments. It's the dosage that determines whether you'll have a healthy experience or not. And it's you who decides in the end what you put up with or not.

Hopefully my attempt to put this down in English is understandable enough.

Cheers
marc

Rileysdtr said...

Oh, Little Brother, this is a tough time for you, and of course it is. At 24 you're on fire - time to change the world! You're a man grown, at the peak of your strength, powers, and determination, but (forgive me) the whole "wisdom that comes with age" things hasn't exactly kicked in yet. You long for the struggle, to make your mark and your difference in the world.

Here's the good news - the struggle is out there. Every time you stand up and say "this is me I am not ashamed" you are joining in. 40 years ago it was "should they exist?" 20 years ago it was "should they have rights?" 10 years ago it was "should there be hate crimes laws?" Today it is "should they be able to formalize their love?" The struggle goes on, Little Brother, with baby steps of progress that over the years become one long march to freedom.

I am blessed to live in Chicago, where half a million people cheer on 250 floats and marching groups for our Pride March. I was asked by a neighbor "Why bother to go anymore? Why march? It's become like the St. Patrick's Day parade. Normal."

I march for those who cannot - who live in tiny hamlets across the country (hell, the world) and seek out scraps of positive news to affirm their very existence.

I march with the Gay Vets, who fought for the freedom still currently denied to them.

I march as witness to the hatred that still exists; in support of the small group of people among dancing muscle boys who carried signs that said "I was a victim of a hate crime, and hate crimes must stop."

I march in honor of those who marched in the first Pride parades nearly 40 years ago, to far, far different receptions.

I march in remembered joy for those who have died, from hate crimes, from cancer, from AIDS, or from age, and who would be dancing along the parade route if they could still march.

I march because this me, and I am not ashamed. I have been spat upon years ago marching in small town Michigan. I have been beaten, broken, and cut in a dark, dark place in North Carolina. I have cried at the graves of my friends. I march because this is me, and I will not be stopped from marching.

Little Brother, when I was 24 I sought to change the world. I changed it, and it changed me back. Keep the faith, keep the struggle, and power to ALL people.

Anonymous said...

awol, what other kinda groups might you be interested in affiliating with like environmental, etc. you don't have to identify with gay community just cuz you are gay. if that materialism shit stinks, then it stinks. you can be gay in any group you choose to throw in with, cept of course the freakin fundies. oh, and the military, and......

Leesa said...

Rileysdtr said: I march because this me, and I am not ashamed. I have been spat upon years ago marching in small town Michigan. I have been beaten, broken, and cut in a dark, dark place in North Carolina. I have cried at the graves of my friends. I march because this is me, and I will not be stopped from marching.

Little Brother, when I was 24 I sought to change the world. I changed it, and it changed me back. Keep the faith, keep the struggle, and power to ALL people.


Wow. This is one of the most powerful and beautiful things I have read in a long time. Thank you, Rileysdtr. Keep up that fight!