Queer/Race News

Posted in Today by ascheer on February 24, 2010

Compton Cookout

I found this post on the blog Racialicious.  The article details an incident at UC-San Diego where students organized an off-campus party called the “Compton Cookout” and used derogatory racial stereotypes of African Americans when advertising the event.  The event itself is inexcusable however there has been a well organized response to the incident that promises lasting change for black students at UCSD.

“Gaysians take over fashion week”


The title is the most interesting part of this article posted on Colorlines Magazine’s blog, RaceWire.org.  Guest columnist Alex Jung describes the numerous successes of several prominent young Asian male designers.

“Obama’s new proposal: LGBTs still missing”


All of the gay related provisions from the original House bill for health care reform have been removed from Obama’s latest proposed compromise.  It is not likely that provisions will make it back into new incarnations of the bill.

I selected these particular news items because I believe they illustrate a useful spectrum of queer and race current events from culture, art, and politics.  After Obama was elected, there was a lot of talk about how the US had finally become a “post-race” society.  The first article, “Compton Cookout” I think very definitively shows that there is still a long way to go before that is the case.  I think the fact that this happened on a college campus, one where only 2% of the student body is African American, is especially telling.  The advertisements for the party went to great lengths to define what it means to be a black, “ghetto” man or woman and in doing so exposed how some people (of privilege) relate to and understand the bodies of poor people of color.

I found the “Gaysians Take over Fashion Week” article interesting because the headline makes very clear connections between the race and sexuality of the designers and yet the article itself, aside from photographs where some of the designers appear flamboyant, does not itself address sexuality at all.

The finale article, “Obama’s new proposal: LGBTs still missing” reinforces the US government will not willingly recognize LGBT people as humans deserving of access to quality healthcare.  In doing so, I believe politicians are sticking to this idea that Middle America cannot handle LGBT people or issues, which I just do not believe to be true.

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4 Responses

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  1. mchambe2 said, on February 24, 2010 at 4:54 pm

    these are great sites! I wanted to specifically comment on the ‘compton cookout.’ i am in no way giving a ‘pass’ to these students, but i wanted to bring up that on several occasions, students ‘theme’ their parties with inappropriate and racially charged themes. i’ve been invited to ‘white trash’ parties, and most recently i’ve noticed a sharp increase in ‘jersey shore’ themed parties. i’ve heard of C.E.O’s and corporate hoes parties (which deals more with gender stereotypes) but all of these kinds of themed parties degrade and stereotype specific identity groups. you mentioned that the cookout was advertised using inappropriate racial slurs etc. and i agree that it is inexcusable. but what do we do about other kinds of racially charged themed parties? i know italian americans were furious at portrayals being assoiciated with their community through Jersey Shore. are these parties a true danger or are they ‘in good fun’?

  2. Anne Niemi said, on February 24, 2010 at 10:38 pm

    I thought you found really interesting sites that ask a lot of questions about the intersection of sexuality and race. I was particularly interested in the website about the Asian fashion designers’ success. I would like to explore further the intersection between one’s occupation, one’s sexual orientation, and one’s race. We all know that there are stereotypes for different professions, which can hurt or help an individual depending on whether or not they fit the stereotype. There have been hundreds and hundreds of openly homosexual fashion designers, but I wonder, if a gay designer is multi-cultural, is their homosexuality the principal characteristic outlookers see because of its ties with his or her profession? Is there race then the “Secondary” characteristic? Or, is the fashion industry so “over” being gay, that the designer is then only known as an asian designer? This conversation makes me wonder about the implications of professions on one’s personal identity, and if people feel forced to conform to the cultures and stereotypes of their chosen profession, or if they want to ignore it, refute it, fight it, etc?

  3. Montana said, on February 25, 2010 at 3:36 am

    You real can’t take these uneducated UCSD white trailer trash anywhere. This is what happens when more than one of these guys puts their minds together.

    Oh, where exactly was a speech going on? Thats right, no where, but keep plucking that chicken.

    Or as Carri said “It’s a plot by the fundamentalist rightwing party of tyranny called Republicans. They foment hate, they sneer, they make excuses for their behavior and blame everyone else. They advocate the supremacy of their America – a lily-white America. They are scared and frightened becuase (gasp) a black man has been elected to the White House. They are losing conrol and like cornered animals, they are lashing out. This is the national leadership from whom these studants take their cues.”

  4. Benito Juarez said, on February 25, 2010 at 6:15 pm

    I will tell you what I have seen these last few days, I saw people from different backgrounds, my children, my brothers and sisters come together in solidarity, and got the message heard.

    This reminds me of a parable from the good book where a Levite and Priest come upon a man who fell among thieves and they both individually passed by and didn’t stop to help him. Finally a man of another race came by, he got down from his beast, decided not to be compassionate by proxy and got down with the injured man, administered first aid, and helped the man in need. Jesus ended up saying, this was the good man, this was the great man, because he had the capacity to project the “I” into the “thou,” and to be concerned about his brother.

    You see, the Levite and the Priest were afraid, they asked themselves, “If I stop to help this man, what will happen to me?”

    But then the Good Samaritan came by. And he reversed the question: “If I do not stop to help this man, what will happen to him?”

    That’s the question before us. The question is not, “If I stop to help my brother in need, what will happen to me?” The question is, “If I do not stop to help my brother, what will happen to him or her?” That’s the question.

    God bless all my brothers and sister that stood side by side with our brothers and sisters in need, when you saw a wrong you tried to correct it, you may argue the methods but not the reasons. I know God will not discriminate by country of origin, our sex, our orientation, color of our skin, or our religion as men do.

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