In a clip from a recent reality TV show, a gay guy is arguing with a Chinese woman who had invited the Red Cross to take blood, telling her that she had invited a group which hates him. He says, “You just wouldn’t understand, because you’re not a minority.” Flabbergasted, she points out that she’s Chinese. A couple weeks ago, I saw a video of a guy on twitter saying that Lady Gaga shouldn’t be a gay icon since she doesn’t know what it’s like to face discrimination and hate every day of one’s life. Someone pointed out his mistake regarding Lady Gaga’s sexuality-- she’s bi. However, I think this correction was inane because the discrimination women in the entertainment industry face is well documented, probably more so than a white, gay lawyer living in Hell’s Kitchen, NYC.
Are you part of the LGBTQIA+ community? Are you thinking about rushing? I was once in your shoes, and even did rush. Well, here’s something to think about: the Greek Life community is not exactly “welcoming” to us. In fact, we’re not even meant to be in this space as it is made by and for straight cis people. I am not saying do not rush, as I love the friends I have made and the community I have carved for myself in this institution. It is just also necessary to think it through, and to be aware of some things going on that might make you feel less than comfortable.
I have been fairly fortunate in my life as a trans* man. I (eventually) gained the support of my parents, who have been very helpful in my pursuit of a medical transition. However, there is still a very real cost to all of this. And I don’t mean in any mental or emotional form. I mean money, and lots of it.
If I had a dollar for every time someone has called me a “sweet, baby boy,” “smol bean,” or some other cutely condescending name, I’d have enough saved for top surgery by now. The comments don’t just stop at basic physical appearance, and usually relate to my gayness. I’ve been called “twink” or had someone inappropriately insist that I’m a bottom an absurd amount of times. Yes, it’s true that I’m short, blonde, relatively hairless, and have a higher voice. I would think that it should come naturally that I wouldn’t want to be associated with these traits, since they go against the masculinity I try so hard to cultivate as a trans man. Yet cis people seem borderline obsessed with pointing out my more feminine characteristics, which are often out of my control. Why is this?
Growing up, I never had strong sentiments towards religion, spirituality or any kind of “God”. The only times I went to church was on Christmas Eve, and I only ever set foot in mosques when I visited relatives in Istanbul with my family. Not to pray, but to admire the stunning insides of the Sultan Ahmet and Süleymaniye Mosques. That is not to say that I didn’t enjoy religion though. After all, it was Baby Jesus who brought us presents on Christmas Eve, and I always knew the gifts I received on Kurban Bayram (observed as Eid al-Fitr in other parts of the world) had something to do with Mohammed. Christianity, Islam, and I did not have beef, ever
In the 2020 race for the Democratic nomination, a dynamic exists among the candidates which would have been unthinkable a couple decades ago: the candidate who invokes God and his Christian faith the most, who constantly appealed to morality and his religion, who is trying to take up the mantle of the American Evangelicals from the Trump-era Republicans, is the only fag in the race. Of course, I’m talking about Mayor Pete Buttigieg.
Emma Collins Staff Writer she/her/hers they/them/theirs
It seems like slurs are being reclaimed all over the place! From my cishet professors calling LGBTQIA+ people the all encompassing term “queer,” to folks self labeling as “dykes” and friends calling each other “fags,” the LGBTQIA+ community seems to be reclaiming words that were once seen as harmful. The thing is, though, these words are still seen as harmful by some. For me, as someone who self identifies as queer, hearing my cishet friends call me queer still makes me cringe. I am just one person and I do not speak for the entire LGBTQIA+ community, so I had 106 LGBTQIA+ identifying University of Michigan students fill out a survey regarding which reclaiming slurs they use, which ones they do not, and their thoughts around these reclaimed slurs.
Growing up, many of us young LGBT+ audience members have struggled to find ourselves represented in mainstream television and movies. In recent years, it has become easier with television shows and movies explicitly having LGBT+ representation like "Love Simon," "Princess Cyd," "POSE," "Brooklyn-Nine-Nine," and more. What did LGBT+ viewers do years ago when the media was not as accepting?
Love is intangible. You cannot hold love in your hand, and you cannot wrap it around your neck like a noose. Yet so many of us do. Love is not predestined for others and withheld from ourselves. Love is not limited, it is ever changing. Self-love is exactly that, you cannot hold it and it does not take up a place in the sky, but you can feel it. Humanity has such a strong need to have love, feel it, taste it, smell it, sleep next to it. But love captures a million moments in a lifetime, every drop of paint in a portrait. Self-love can only come from one’s self, and therefore it intangible. I believe the need to physically see love is the founding of Valentine’s Day, of pastel wrapped hearts covered in ‘kiss me,’ a diamond cut around a finger, cards and candies, etc. February defines love so physically because seeing is the only way humans ever believe in anything.