My parents have had to pay to put three children through University (in different countries) as well as pay for the expenses that go with me having an increasingly severe disability. And obviously we sometimes like to celebrate our new, more comfortable lifestyle by going on vacations, but it is not always as indulgent since we are not accustomed to doing vacations. We have to be so much more careful, and this always reminds me of how I need to prepare myself for my inevitably poor future.
Earlier in April this year, Indian Trans activist Laxmi Narayan Tripathi, an invitee of the TEDx conference at Mumbai was asked to leave by the Management of the Bombay Gymkhana. All this happened while the conference was in session. As a sign of solidarity several people walked out. Dailies and tabloids wrote about this and everyone screamed at such a blatant act of discrimination. The President of the club just went into hiding, no questions answered. The Management had not expressed any regret; not even a melodramatic half-hearted apology was rendered. Not that it would have made any difference.
There’s been much internet-related gay news this week. Some of it, the first of its kind, and some, downright sad. Eighteen year old Tyler Clementi, a freshman at Rutgers University, New Jersey, committed suicide is thought to have jumped off the George Washington bridge after a video of him being intimate with another man went viral on the internet.
It is so tragic that a gay student has taken his life off due to bullying and invasion of privacy. Even after years of Mathew Sheppard and countless of registered and unregistered statistics (read suicides, murder... ), many countries and states do not yet have litigation to protect minorities. But isn't this a social problem? How much does it take for someone to respect others' privacy? Why makes assholes do things that are so destructive?
The DADT policy was enacted to allow gay and lesbian individuals to serve in the military as long as they did not disclose and/or engage in homosexual acts. Effectively, it meant they had to remain in the closet and/or celibate. Failing which these individuals could be discharged from the military.
Have you heard of Australian swimmer Stephanie Rice? I hadn't till a few days ago. Apparently she was watching a rugby match between Australia & South Africa and after the Australian team beat the South African team, she tweeted, "Suck on that, f@gg*ts!" Because, you know, the South African team is clearly gay if they couldn't beat the Australian team, because gays are such losers and not men enough.
In many ways I am thankful to have the family that I do. My father seems indifferent about who I date, and just doesn’t like to talk about feelings. However, although my mother wasn’t the most supportive person when I came out of the closet, I truly believe that she did her best considering her place in this world. She didn’t even consider disowning me, and I acknowledge that as a privilege because I have seen friends (desi and non-desi) struggle with the fear of being disowned for going against their parent’s wishes.
I first came out as a lesbian when I started college as an undergrad. I went through all the rites of passage that the white queers had set up for me, and I abandoned the straight desi girls. I’m not necessarily sad that I abandoned them. I missed them later and tried to play catch-up, but their never-ending conversations about how their evil parents wouldn’t let them buy that coach purse, and how scary black men are were ridiculous and tiring. And somehow I always managed to subconsciously find my way back to the closet whenever I was in their company.
Are you scared of [some] straight people ? Have you ever been ? Do you wonder if the person sitting next to you on the train or waiting in line behind you at the coffee shop is a threat to your well being if they discover you are gay ?
It doesn’t happen often …luckily. But there have been these situations when the hair at the back of my neck has stood up and I’ve either been on the edge or lied about my sexual orientation for what I considered basic self preservation.
Last month marked the 40th anniversary of Stonewall. In 1969, trans people, prostitutes, lesbian, bi and gay individuals fought back against a police raid of a queer establishment. They stood together to say NO to homophobia/transphobia; NO to conventional thinking, and NO to discrimination.
I’ve been told many times by people not to take umbrage at the use of ‘that’s so gay’ to mean ‘stupid’ or any other number of derogatory things. But that always bothers me. Not that I have no sense of humour. I do, and can laugh when things are genuinely funny – making fun of homophobia is funny, because it’s a progressive way of telling a biased society how ridiculous they sound.
Adults can be assholes sometimes. Or most of the time. Children on the other hand are so much more accepting and kind. Life is simple if you’re a child- fewer …
I wanted to share this article that appeared in a daily newspaper recently that shares the ordeal of the countless Queer couples who are tackling their fight against society – …
Remember when J.K. Rowling mentioned that Dumbledore was gay? Remember how some parents were shocked and outraged that their child might have grown fond of a character that was gay?! Because heaven forbid, a child should feel affection for a gay person!