I’m only a teenager. I’m watching
Blue is the Warmest Color, or
Boys Don’t Cry, or
I’m still in the closet, because my father
does not believe in bisexuality, and so
I do not believe in myself.
From the television, I’m learning that people like me
don’t get happy endings, that queer cinema isn’t so much
a genre as it is a fashionable body count. Because
the straight masses only love us when we’re martyrs,
or tragedies, because we’re less sympathetic
when we’re not being punished.
Skip to now.
Halfway through June of 2016 and seventeen
lesbian characters have been killed on mainstream television.
Most of them, in brutal, graphic ways and in the wake
of dead lesbian number eighteen, my girlfriend texts me
to ask if we get to be happy.
And I don’t feel safe.
I’m struggling to pay rent and another lesbian dies on television.
I get a new job and another lesbian dies on television.
I ask my girlfriend to move in and another lesbian dies on television.
So how much longer can they calls us beautiful tragedies
before they admit we’re a cautionary tale? A warning
that women who love women have no right to their own futures?
A boogieman to keep queer little girls up at night?
Queer cinema evolved to be reactionary—
to challenge the prettily packaged clichés of straight romance,
to tell the gritty parts of our stories that straight audiences refused
to look at directly, but my existence is not for straight consumption.
Now, when heartbroken little kids go looking for someone, anyone,
who looks like them, they get to see themselves as
blood in the bathtub,
a teenager in a body bag.
We need the dream of the happy ending.
We need the promise of a future.
If I wanted to watch queer people being slaughtered en masse,
I’d turn on the evening news. What I need
The other day, I finished this book and the ending was so
sugary and unrealistic and horribly cliché, but
more than half the main characters were queer and
it was just so good to exist, even for a moment, in a world
where we were all happy
and no one died.
seriously, i do not begrudge people who are uncomfortable being specifically called queer. I get that. That’s fine.
1) you don’t get to tell me not to use queer for myself 2) you don’t get to erase the history of queer as a badge of reclamation, pride, and self-identification in the community and 3) you DO NOT GET TO SAY MY IDENTITY IS A SLUR
doing any of those three things is one of the quickest ways to ensure that I’m gonna block the hell out of you, even if I’ve followed you a long time, even if we’re mutuals, even if i like you.
this is a place I come largely for fun, and I don’t have the energy to debate with anyone over this.
So if you agree with any of the 3 points above? You might as well tell me. I’m not going to yell at you, I’m not going to namedrop you, I’m not going to drag you through the mud, I just want to not know you anymore. Because this? Is not the place I want to expend what little energy I have fighting for my right to exist.
Actually no: the kids on the tag need to chill about YURI ON ICE IS ONLY FOR GAYS because my queer ass would have figured itself out a hell of a lot faster with positive representation like this rather than what was available, which was …. maybe you guys want to look up FAKE!!! or Mirage of Blaze sometime.
The fact that there is a God damn Japanese anime that is aimed at the mainstream sports series audience that features a natural, normalized HEALTHY QUEER RELATIONSHIP that is based around love and support for each other is something I never dreamed of seeing 20 years ago. To have it so matter of fact that the drama is about the sport and growing as a couple instead of AM I GAY OR DO I LOVE HIM? made me feel like crying the first time I saw it.
Anyway don’t we have enough problems as queers in this world without nailing up signs that say YOU MUST BE THIS QUEER TO ENTER?
A new podcast has made it into my obsessive listening rotation! The Penumbra.
Spooky, sexy and queer - three little words that are guaranteed to have me slamming that ‘subscribe’ button so hard and fast I crack my phone screen - and additionally, the perfect words to describe this little audio gem.
Up to number 12 at the time of writing, the episodes alternate between the ongoing saga of a noir style private eye trawling through the mysterious criminal undertakings of Hyperion City, Mars, (Juno Steel) and compelling short stories, only one episode long that leave you desperate for more.
Joining the ranks of other such audio crack as The Bright Sessions, The Bunker, Marscorp, Our Fair City, Alice Isn’t Dead, Kakos Industries, King Falls AM, EOS 10, Wolf 359, and of course, the gateway series, Welcome to Night Vale, The Penumbra Podcast combines enthralling storylines, addictive characters, and heartrending romantic arcs, in which gender and sexuality are completely incidental.
Give your listeners a treat. Subscibe to The Penumbra and spread the love.