Queer Identity in Mainstream Society

Posted in Uncategorized by saimaanika on March 4, 2010

1.)    Get counted! Why the Census is crucial to gays


Summary: This article is my favorite. It is about how a significant amount of people from the LGBT community are not listed in the U.S. Census.  Basically, the census is a list of the races that exist in the U.S. and it is redone every decade.  The queer race does not count, they do not exist, and they do not have identities, according the census not listing them.  They fill out the form, yet they are not included in the census.

2.)    Oklahoma man sues to use “IM GAY” on license plate


Summary: This article is describes an event where a gay man, Keith Kimmel, sued the Oklahoma Tax Commission for not allowing him to have an “IM GAY” license plate.  The Oklahoma Tax Commission refutes by saying that the license plate could affront others in the public. Kimmel wants to express himself and announce his sexuality to the public by putting up this license plate up on his car.  He mentions that others put up derogatory license plates up that presents straight slurs.

3.)    150 same-sex couples seek marriage licenses in DC-


Summary: Today was a wonderful day for the LGBT community and for all the people who support this community because the Washington D.C. became the sixth state in America to allow same-sex marriages matrimony.  One hundred fifty gay couples stood in line in order to retrieve their marriage license.  The gay marriage law was first introduced to the District of Columbia through the D.C. Council back in October of 2009, where it attained almost unanimous voted from the beginning.  After everyone signed by December, it went through a congressional review period until March 2nd, the expiration date and a day that will go down in history as a celebratory and commemorative day for the LGBT community.

Summative Reflection:

I chose this week’s theme to be “Queer Identity in Mainstream Society.”  The gay movement is to attain the rights that everyone is entitled to, especially the rights to express themselves and be accepted as a race in mainstream society.  These articles are about how every queer person is endeavoring to be integrated in to main stream society as individuals who need to express their identity and have a valid identity in society.   I believe that the queer race should have the permission to express their identity grounded, settled, and legitimate before moving on to attaining other rights and such, which they are endeavoring to do, because identity is the most prudent component there is out there because without it, you do not exist.

For example, for the article on the U.S Census, I always felt as if the U.S. Census is basically a map that lists all the races that are recognized, similar to a map, which signifies all the charted masses of lands. The people from LGBT community that are not listed on the census is a substantial race that makes up America and not listing them on the census is much like denying their existence.  In 1990, gays and lesbians finally showed up on the census; however that was by error and the only time that occurred.  Deliberating identifying them on the census would finally and truly integrate them in the U.S. population on paper and in the mind of the U.S. population.

For my article on the “IM GAY” license plates, I ask myself what happened to freedom of expression. Every single person needs to express their identity and gay people are just as entitled to that.  As for the phrase “offending” others, well, I see sexually explicit license plates all the time that truly offend me, what about that? There are license plates out that signify that the driver is straight, such as “STR8FAN.” I feel like this is a total hypocrisy situation, proves even strongly that this country is a country that extols straight people as the supreme, and this behavior should be diminished, pronto!

My last article, which is about the gay marriage law that was ratified today in the District of Columbia, exemplifies the gay movement at its finest.  The gay movement is succeeding to display their true identity to the world by being able to marrying each other, like everyone else can.  It’s a good for the LGBT community and they should cherish and hope that this law remains intact. The queer race has been marginalized for centuries and decades and it is finally time for this community to attain goals. However, there is still a LONG way to go.


4 Responses

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  1. anneabigail said, on March 8, 2010 at 12:37 am

    Wow, reading the article about the “taboo” response to the Gay announcement license plate gave me the chills. I find it really interesting the spectrum of tolerance for Homosexuality in the United States, and how it can change from neighborhood to neighborhood. I am sure that there must be places that would have approved a license plate that insulted the homosexual community, which is frightening. Growing up in Boston, I always assumed that it was the “bleeding heart liberal capital of the world,” with Boston’s focus on individual rights and left-wing decision making. It is ironic then, that I would encounter some of the most racist and intolerant individuals in certain neighborhoods of Beantown. I wonder what it must be like to be homosexual and have to do research and find out what neighborhoods are tolerant of their lifestyle, and where they may have their rights patronized, or maybe even put themselves in danger. Unfortunately, many homosexuals probably have to learn the hard way, as this college student did, or perhaps he already had a notion of what the state would say about his plate, and just wanted to see if people were actually that ignorant.

  2. ascheer said, on March 8, 2010 at 4:31 am

    I think it is problematic to identify a queer population as a single race. Queer people belong to many different races, and to lump us all together as a single race invalidates the spectrum of ethnic and racial identities that many share with their sexual identity.

    Getting LGBTQ people counted on the US Census is an important step for gaining political power. Although becoming a recognized group requires a certain amount of social acceptance for LGBTQ folks/issues, the resulting government representation and federal funding is what counts in the long term. It’s not about integration, it’s about voting districts and federal funding for social programs like public education and healthcare.

    …And marriage. Yes, gaining the right to marry in DC is some mark of progress however, in my mind it is by no means an example of the gay rights movement at it’s finest. Instead I would point to work done by the DC Trans Coalition, which has organized to improve the day-to-day lives of trans and gender non-conforming people in the District. Because of their work, discrimination on the basis of gender identity or presentation is illegal. All single-stall restrooms must be labeled as gender neutral, to prevent individuals’ genders from being scrutinized. And presently, the DC Trans Coalition is fighting to ensure that incarcerated trans people have access to appropriate housing, healthcare, and humane treatment. While being able to get married is an incredibly important and valid need for some individuals, there is much more work to be done to ensure that future generations are able to live in a world where homo and transphobia do not guide and define ones life experience.

    • saimaanika said, on May 7, 2010 at 11:31 am

      When I said that the ratification of “gay marriage is an example of the gay rights movement at its finest,” I meant that it is an accomplishment that, I think, would fall in to one of the top milestone that the LGBT community accomplished. Yes, the DC Trans Coalition was most definitely another wonderful top accomplishment and there are so much more things that would be even better accomplishments, after we attain them. However, for now, gay marriage would be one of the top, along with other great accomplishments like the DC Trans Coalition, for me because these bigger successes show that queer people are gradually being accepted in to mainstream society. There is such a long way to go from here, but we should commemorate and rejoice at every milestone, big or small. That’s what I think.

  3. dpayton2 said, on March 11, 2010 at 6:00 pm

    The passing of the amendment in D.C. was indeed a good day for the gay community. America is coming closer to respecting the rights of the gays and seeing them as equals, although it is still a long way off from equality. There is hope for the homosexuals in America who wished to be recognized with a partner, and they can celebrate their relationship now with legal rites.

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