Queer Me!

In Uncategorized on Februar 10, 2009 at 1:41 am
Queer Space

Queer Space

Short and sweet. Because we have to start somewhere. Some quick thoughts and propositions on „queer“:

1. Queer is about more than sex. Much more.

2. Queer is perhaps more adequately a verb than an adjective, even though we use it as adjective, too. Why? Because queer recognizes that we use adjectives and nouns to identify and classify actions, persons, practices, situations, desires, things, and just about everything, but queering has very much to do with loosening the tight grips that identitarian thinking has on us.

3. Queering is not subversion for subversion’s sake. It’s about bodies, desires, and lives that are marginalized, that struggle for survival, that are exposed to violence everyday on the basis of how they desire, love, and inhabit their body.

4. To be straight doesn’t mean that that one can’t live queer.

5. Queer without critically thinking gender becomes anemic, just as queer without thinking about sexuality and desire becomes too unspecific.

6. What are the most important concerns for queer activism and theory today where you are?

7. What is the translation for „queer“ in your language? How often does it come up in everyday conversations at your workplace, school, among your friends, your family? Other situations?

Tell us!

  1. When I think of myself being „queer,“ I almost NEVER think of sex. Which seems ridiculous. But, the major concern for myself, and for many homophobic people, is the presentation and politics of being queer. To me, being queer is a freeing experience. It opens up gender & love & spirituality & family & the meanings of awareness, power, privilege, treatment, patriarchy, abuse. Without the understanding of „queer,“ I would not have opened my eyes to my own Hispanic ethnicity, my own gender presentation, my own identification as a lower class. I would not have realized the numerous disadvantages faced by people day after day. Being queer. Just, claiming yourself as it… is powerful. It can seem elitist. But, I think if you believe in the meaning and values behind the reclamation of „queer“ and the support from the surrounding community, your life is full of unique, skewed possibilities.

    Queer queers everything around you. You look at work and play and families and relationships and what’s expected of you differently. Families aren’t made up of two children and two parents of different genders. Hell, families may have one parent, two parents, three parents, eight parents. Families can be seen in communes. Maybe family, to you, is your friends. Identifying as „queer,“ you make your own possibilities — and it leads to open-minded friends and an empowering network of people who are in agreement of the „to each his own“ philosophy.

    Where can I work with tattoos covering my arms? Which stores will let me keep my facial piercings in as an employee? If my biological parents do not accept me for who I am, then are they my family? What areas are accepting of LGBTQ people? What political groups keep not only the LGBTQ population in mind, but people of color, the lower class, the disabled, the elderly? Where can I park my car if it has a rainbow sticker on it? Should I not present more masculine in different states or even different cities? How long do I have to be in the closet before I come out and my job is safe?

    Sex is the least of, at least, my concerns as a queer person. Sex may, very well, be the easiest part. You have to think differently, creatively, spontaneously and out-of-the-box when you live in a world where losing your virginity is less scary than walking down the street.

    I love being queer. And that has very little to do with my sexual orientation. It will have to do with how I paint my house when I own it (fuck neutral colors!), how I raise my children, who I vote for, what I believe in, what spiritual form I follow. I love being queer because it’s a word and identity that gives power to people who feel so disempowered on a regular basis. I love being queer because it forces people to brainstorm and to try to understand different lives and cultures.

    Queer, to me, is an identity that is impossible to be taken on by one person. It is a constant social, political, emotional, cultural, and intellectual struggle that bands people together for indeterminable amounts of time. „Queer“ forms a community, a camaraderie or – even better – a sisterhood. It displays a spirit within people that can only be found in crisis intimacies. It is a defining factor of my life. And will be of my children’s lives. And my family’s lives. And my friend’s lives. It will touch each person I come into contact with. Whether or not they agree with who I choose to sleep with, spend the rest of my life with, or raise kids with, it will show something that isn’t found on any average streets of the U.S. – an open-mindedness and forced love that can only be compared to a large, dysfunctional, struggling family who finds comfort in one another and the outlandish.

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