Cathy compared the current fight for gay rights to the civil rights movement of the 60's and was told by her 20-year-old friend that we, as gays, had no business comparing our struggle to that of African Americans. This was her reply:
Is Gay the new Black?
Do we not get beaten for being gay?
Do we not get tortured and harassed and killed for being gay?
Have we not been stalked, hunted, lynched, abducted, tortured?
Have we not been ignored by law enforcement when we report these things?
Has any black person ever been thrown out of their own family for being black?
Has any black person ever been thrown out of their own church for being black?
Are we not the highest rate of minority suicide?
Do we not suffer more mental and emotional trauma due to self identity stress than any other minority?
Are we not wrongfully accused of sexual harassment simply for being gay?
Do we not hit glass ceilings, receive less respect, have fewer opportunities in certain careers?
Are we not grouped with pedophiles in peoples’ view?
Was being black ever recognized by The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders as a psychopathology?
Are we not feared as sexual deviants who will demoralize your family or self by association?
Do we not get asked to leave and/or kicked out of straight establishments?
Is it not illegal for us to adopt children?
When it is legal, are we not at the bottom of the list and over investigated?
Is not "gay sex" itself not illegal?
Are we not fired from military careers if we "tell"?
Is it not still perfectly legal to be fired in most places for being gay?
Is it not still legal to refuse to hire us for being gay?
Do we not get profiled and wrongfully harassed and arrested by the people who should be protecting us?
Do we not get blatantly asked to keep our true selves politely hidden so others shouldn't have to be offended by our presence?
Were black people raised in families that hated them for being black, that taught them to believe they were sick, unwanted, unloved and going to hell for being black?
Do black people have to, for the most part, experience all of this alone... without the support of their family & friends?
If you are in your 20's or younger, your generation missed out on a lot of what the rest of us were here for.
And my generation missed out on more than I had the good fortune to not be there for.
My point is this, black Americans have their struggle. We have ours.
I am not unsympathetic to their journey, I have studied it, I admire it, I have been inspired by it, and I stand with them.
But I, stand with us all. And it is OUR time to stand up and demand better. Demand it all.
No minority who suffers any of the fall out of inequality, no matter what their history, can proclaim that "no comparison" bullshit.
Did you know that during the holocaust -- there were concentration camps for gay people? Not just the Jews, but gay camps as well. Why is that never talked about?
Did you know that thousands and thousands and thousands of people have taken to the streets this week but every news piece says "a few hundred to a thousand or so?”
Did you notice that out of miles and miles and hours and hours of peaceful & lawful inspiring protests -- on the front page of the Los Angeles Times is a photo of one out of control protester? And the only person I saw -- out of thousands -- being pulled aside and interviewed on camera was a flamboyant, crass, foul-mouthed drag queen who appeared drunk in public and was spewing disrespectful rhetoric?
Why is this important? Because people don't know we exist. People believe we are stereotypes, people believe we are moral freaks, people do not know anything about us, and what is even sadder is that our own community knows so very little about itself… or its own history.
The history is there and not talked about, not handed down. We have not come together as a community to tell our stories, hand them down from generation to generation, instill them in our people’s blood.
Black Americans have that, I admire that. I mourn that for us. In fact, to most people we barely even exist.
Our history has been swept under the rug. Now it's time to make our own, hand it down among us and refuse to be marginalized any longer.
I have nothing but respect for our fellow oppressed minority groups -- but we need to stand as one, with each other and drop the bullshit competition for the right to carry the biggest cross. I don't want it. And anyone who needs to preach it is holding back the entire human race.
So once again, is Gay the new Black? Or can we all just be human now...