Sunday, January 8, 2012

Gay vs Black: Which Side Will Win?

And no, my fellow munchers, I am not talking about the two groups themselves. I am talking about the two parts of my own identity. You see, 'mosexuals, there isn't a whole lot about me that most members of the mainstream African American community generally approve of. For one thing, I am an Atheist. 

That never goes over well with my Black church loving counterparts, so, unless my hand is forced, I keep it to myself in said environments. So, you can all imagine how totally rad I thought it was when I discovered that there was OMFG A BLACK ATHEISTS GROUP ON FACEBOOK!

But alas, my joy wound up being rather short- lived. You see, dykes, it turns out that everything that always made me feel like an outcast in mainstream African- American culture- my gayness, my disdain of rigid gender roles and the general acceptance of misogyny- made me just as much of an outcast there. It was exactly the same, minus the heavy emphasis on Christianity. And the worst part,dykes, was that there were even people suggesting that being a homosexual is...wait for it... gasp! a choice! As you can imagine, I saw absolute red at this particular piece of ignorance.

So, in the end, I wound up getting into the same heated debate with this bunch of ignorant heterosexuals that I always do with their religious counterparts, ultimately resulting in my exiting the group.

You see dykes, I am a quintuple minority.I am gay, black, atheist,female- bodied, and genderqueer. Oftentimes, I wind up shying away from one of my minority groups due the fact that there is general prejudice from that group against one or more of the other groups I belong to. To that end, I sometimes wind up forsaking one group for another, based upon which one gives me the least grief. Let me tell ya, I absolutely have never faced real racism from the gay community, but I sure as hell face plenty of homophobia, transphobia(I'm genderqueer), and misogyny from the African American community. So for now.. Queers 1, Blacks nil. I know how ugly and un- PC this sounds...but it's where I am at right now. Sometimes making choices means foregoing usual tact and doing what is best for us at the moment. 


  1. Haven't you experienced any hostility in the GLBT community against your atheism? I've found that there is a strong vein of fundamentalistic poison running through the gay community in the guise of post-modernist and new-age spirituality. I call it fundamentalistic because it feels like the same strong "I believe no matter what logic and science say" kind of stubbornness. I can't tell you how many times I've been told by condescending gays that they "used to be atheist too," insinuating that I am blinded by the devil-science and will eventually see the light. Maybe that's just my experience in the circles I've been around. And yes, I've always wanted to be a lesbian!

  2. Zalmond, I actually am dating a girl that is a theist, and she's ok with my atheism. We were friends long before we were together-well, about 8 months- and she knows I have big problems with religion. We discussed it and adopted an agree to disagree stance on that.

    As far as the community at large, there seems to be this ridiculous trend of trying to make religious people accept LGBT people and support our rights. I think its a futile effort. I grew up with fundies. They won't change. Everything we are goes against the very core of what they live their lives by. I do belong to that Believe Out Loud page on Facebook, because their message is genuinely good- a "let's all get along despite our differences" approach, and proselytizing of any kind is strictly prohibited.

    I haven't had any hostility based upon a lack of belief in anything spiritual from LGBT folks, but I have had them kind of subtly try to introduce me to various forms of new age thinking, which I always politely decline, and they are usually ok with that. That also might be because I have an extensive knowledge of the history of world religions, and when I start telling them WHY none of it makes sense, with historical fact to back it up, they slink away, intimidated, because I have sincerely never met anyone, atheist, theist, spiritualist, or otherwise, who has done the sort of research I did when I was leaving organized religion.

    Thanks for commenting! Hope to see you around again. Isn't being a lesbian grand?

  3. Not exactly atheist (agnostic, ATM), but I am black and trying my damnedest to be lesbian(the penis takes away from that bit)! :D
    I agree with you on the fact that it is saddening to see a group of minorites that've been persecuted by bigots, wind up being bigots themselves, but stick in there. the world is becoming too small to allow such closed-mindedness for long.

  4. Thanks, Edible Lif's! And you are right. In order to find a way to cope with the still stinging hurts from that Black Atheists group, I joined a group for Black LGBTQ Atheists. That was a response to the misogyny and homophobia that is so prevalent in the mainstream Black Atheists group. There are STRICT guidelines- you must be all 3- African American, some form of queer/LGBTQ identified, AND atheist. No exceptions. That way, we don't have to worry about any of what I just mentioned in this post. So far, it's a great group. I'm hanging in there.

    And hey, you could always be a stud bud or a lesbro or honorary queer! Come hang out any time, you seem really fun.

  5. It could be that the black atheist folks are still carrying some baggage from their exit from the religious community. Among the atheist groups I belong to which are mostly white except for you and few others homophobia isn't much of an issue. There are a few curmudgeons you come across but they mostly are fringe nuts across the board and are "atheist" only to piss off people. (At least that's my take on them.)

    I think the longer people are away from religion the more they can reason without prejudices taught by those groups. Those of us who are gay and atheist realize how illogical all that prejudice is on the face, however people who are just emerging still carry a lot of subconscious baggage and unfortunately, don't always apply rigorous rationality to their warped ideas.

  6. That's a great point, Buck, and perhaps you are right. I really do hope that people rethink what they are saying, or at least start to realize how hurtful it is.

    As for the fringe'll have that in every group- the gays whose main focus is to piss people off by being as outwardly homosexual as possible, the right wing nuts with the "my way or the highway" attitudes..I could go on and on. But I guess what shocks and hurts the most is this: of all people, African Americans should understand how it feels to be marginalized for no other reason than how they were born. Then..they turn around and do it to other people.