LGBT+ Alliance 101
So you’re a straight cisgendered person and you consider yourself an ally to the LGBT+ community. But are you, really?? Well, if you commit any of the following cardinal sins, then I would say that’s a definite “NO.” Some of these sins, if you commit them, actually make you an asshole. But you don’t wanna be seen in that light by LGBT+ folk, right?? Well, I’m gonna outline to you some very simple instructions to help clean up your act.
1. Don’t go around telling your gay friend’s sexuality/gender to everyone you know.
I already discussed this earlier. It isn’t your place to be releasing that type of information, even if they told you themselves. And there’s always the off chance that you could be telling someone who’s VERY homophobic. Just let them come out on their own terms.
2. Don’t make LGBT+ people the butt of your jokes.
We already have a tough time in this society with all the hate and violence we receive. Last thing we need is someone making fun of us. And an “ally” joining in (or initiating the joke) is adding insult to injury. And majority of the jokes made by straight people promote harmful and false stereotypes about us. If you’re serious about helping us, don’t be that person. Just don’t.
3. DON’T! LECTURE! US! On how to respond to oppression!!!
We know FULL WELL what we go through and what society thinks of us. If anything, we clearly have a better idea of how we want society to accept us than straight people. So don’t tell us how to act or respond in the face of hate. You are an outsider to the community, and this isn’t something you gotta deal with every day.
4. Don’t fetishize us.
We are normal people just like you. We are not anyone’s circus or zoo, and we DAMN SURE ain’t here to be anyone’s kink. Fetishizing mlm, wlw, or trans people isn’t “being an ally.” It’s gross. It’s dehumanizing. It’s turning normal people into sex objects. Looking right at you, Yaoi and Yuri shippers.
5. Don’t stereotype us.
We aren’t here to serve the “Gay Best Friend” archetype. All we want is to be treated like normal people.
6. RESPECT TRANS/NON-BINARY PEOPLE’S IDENTITY!
Don’t be the asshole that keeps mis-gendering them on purpose based on what YOU think they are. If they say they are different gender than what was assigned to them, then THAT’S WHAT THEY ARE. Respect it!
7. Don’t make jokes about how a Trans person looks better than you, a cis person.
Y’know, the one where you go “Wow, you look so hot for a trans person, and I’m cis and I look ugly lol.” By saying that, you’re implying that all trans people are supposed to be uglier than cis people. Your statement is actually a veiled transphobic insult. A simple “You’re beautiful” will suffice.
8. DON’T ask a trans person what genitalia they have.
Regardless of if they fully transitioned or not, it’s none of your business.
9. Don’t ask gay people about their sex lives.
Don’t go up to a gay person and ask them “Are you a top or a bottom?”, “Who’s the man and the woman in the relationship?”, or “What’s gay sex like?” Our sex lives are none of your business. We are under no obligation to tell you intimate stuff like that.
10. Don’t sit there idly while we are under attack.
If you see a queer person getting harassed, either verbally or physically, DON’T JUST STAND THERE. DO SOMETHING!!!! SAVE THEM! The situation is only gonna get worse. Silence perpetuates violence.
So yeah, those are the Ten Commandments of being an Ally. But one could also sum up these Commandments as simply this: JUST DON’T BE AN ASSHOLE.