I am tired of seeing posts say something to the effect of “if aphobia isn’t enough to motivate you, remember that REGs also target [insert more “sympathetic” group here].”
Aphobia is enough. Aphobia matters. Aphobia is heinous enough, cruel enough, horrible enough to stand on its own and to be worth fighting on its OWN merits.
Yes, gatekeepers throw lots of different groups under the bus. Yes, all of those groups deserve attention and deserve to have their issues recognized and fought for. And yes, it is valuable to observe and point out the ways that the foundational tactics of exclusionists repeat themselves in every iteration of the theme.
But y’all need to stop tacking aces and aros on as an afterthought on your posts about it and undermining the support you give us by backpedaling in the very same breath as you defend us, by giving people an excuse to dismiss us from our own activism.
It makes me feel like my pain, my suffering, my oppression is not good enough to count, as though the only reason my issues are being given any attention at all, after years of incredibly difficult fighting to bring my community into the light, is because other, better victims are being hurt by similar forces and tactics. It feels like a tacit validation of the sector of the community that insists that my issues are not real or do not matter.
And that sucks.
We matter. We are enough. We are worth fighting for.
Ok so I haven’t read the newer jughead comics (I really want to!) but I have to address this. Jughead is ARO ace. As in he’s aromatic and asexual. Not only was he confirmed as asexual, he has always made his stance on romance very clear. He hates romance, he doesn’t want to be a part of it. He’s very clearly aromatic asexual. The reason I say this, is because I’ve been seeing a lot of anti ace posts lately… I’ve been hanging around in the jughead tag lately (cuz they sock me right in the feels) and I keep seeing posts that are like “ugh no offense, jughead is gay” “screw aromatic, het aces are gross” “why have a lame cishet jughead when you could have gay jughead”. STOP.
Asexuality can be complicated to explain. You can be ace and still be in a gay or get relationship. You can be ace and be bi or pan romantic. You can be aro ace. But no matter what, asexuals are asexuals. And if someone is asexual and in a het relationship or none at all, that doesn’t make them any less asexual/LGBT+. It’s the same thing you do to bisexuals,you don’t get to decide when that person is or is not their identity. No matter what relationship an asexual person is in- asexuality is valid regardless of the gender of their partner.
In this case, jughead jones is aro ace (as far as I can tell, the romantic part could be up for interpretation but I legitimately believe he’s aro as I can understand his language regarding romantic relationships) He’s not boring or gross for not being in a gay relationship. He’s not a liar and an oppressor for being aro ace- and neither are the real aro ace people who have to hear this in a ace character tag that they went on to see representation. Things like that are gross.
Stop going into ace character tags and saying ‘no this character is gay, and saying he’s anything but is gross and homophobic’ because you know that not true. Leave asexuals alone. Especially when a lot of asexuals didn’t even learn about themselves till going on this freaking website only to have the people that they thought would be accepting do this constantly.
Christmas With The Super-Heroes #2 “Silent Night” by John Byrne w/ Andy Kubert & Glenn Whitmore. 1989.
John shared this behind scenes story about this issue:
Bit of backstory on this one – I had long wanted to do something with Hans von Hammer, but no real opportunity presented itself. Then I was asked to contribute something to this Xmas issue, and for some reason the ol’ Enemy Ace sprang immediately to the front of my brain. But there was one problem, given the nature of the story I wanted to do: no one at DC could tell me if von Hammer could speak English!