Queer/Race

Blog #1: Good to Know

Posted in Uncategorized by graylielane on April 12, 2010

1. Footballers team up to support gay rights

http://www.smh.com.au/afl/afl-news/footballers-team-up-to-support-gay-rights-20100410-rzq1.html

Summary: The Australian Football League is attempting to dispel homophobia and promote acceptance.  Several of the league’s well known players are being photographed next to signs welcoming homosexual players.

Response: Throughout the years homosexuals have always been thought to “not belong” in masculine activities such as football.  Homosexuals have often been typified and stereotyped as “softies” who one would easily be able to pick out from a crowd.  This article not only makes the statement that homosexuals (and heterosexuals for that matter) come in all shapes and sizes.  Masculinity is not a trait linked to an individuals’ sexual preference, it is linked to the individual as a whole.  I hope the statement can spread to the United States where “don’t ask don’t tell” is largely the policy.  This campaign marks a new generation of individuals who will not be ashamed to be who they are.  Most individuals are told that they must conform to society in order to be accepted.  This article leads to the notion that perhaps soon society will start conforming to you.  Hidden in plain sight among us are the unsuspecting queers exposing our ignorance.  Eventually they may no longer have to “pass” universally.

2. CA protest seeks Social Security benefits for gays

http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5gky2ZdMKTbCC5jxOT7tHyHsf-EgwD9F169P00

Summary:  In Los Angeles approximately 700 people with signs protested for equal rights at the Hollywood Social Security Administration Office.  The idea was to seek equal rights for married homosexuals.  A woman, Sylvia, was denied benefits upon the death of her female partner even though they were legally married.

Reflection:  This article comments on the legitimacy of marriage and more importantly the difference between a marriage and a “pseudo” marriage.  The fight for equal marriage is simply the first step in the fight for equality amongst homosexuals.  While it’s nice to think that marriage is all about a declaration of love between two people we cannot ignore the financial component of marriage.  Once two people are legally linked they share everything, including worldly possessions.  This is in both homo and heterosexual marriages.   If a woman devotes all of her time and money to another woman, it’s  the same as what heterosexual couples do for each other.  To say that one can receive benefits upon their partner’s death and the other cannot is discrimination.  Essentially there is no point in being married if it is not fully recognized by the state.  It is also not fair for the state to value one type of life commitment over another.

3. Gay sex link to Terre’ Blanche murder probed

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/36387002/ns/world_news-africa/

Summary:  In South Africa Eugene Terre’blanche, a white supremacist, was murdered after attempting to have sex with one of two black men.  The man was found brutally hacked to death with his pants pulled down.  A 28 year old man and 15 year old boy are being investigated in this case.

Reflection:  The most interesting thing about this piece is whether or not the killing was an issue of race or homosexuality.  The murder victim was head of a movement that denied his murder had anything to do with homosexuality.  This seems as though they are trying to “preserve” the memory of their leader or “pass” off his death as something more bareable.   However, the nature in which the body was found seems to suggest some type of statement was being made.  The article does not explain the homosexual solicitation clearly enough.  It does not say whether or not the solicited man was open to a homosexual relationship with the victim, or a homosexual relationship at all.

Furthermore, this does lead to a question of colorblindness when it comes to relationships.  While the victim was a white supremacist he still solicited a black man for sex.  This leads to the question of whether or not all people are on an even plain field when it comes to sex.  Or has sex become so casual that now it can be done between anyone, even complete enemies.

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One Response

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  1. ahart1314 said, on April 17, 2010 at 8:14 pm

    I found the first article about stereotypically hypermasculine football players supporting LGBT rights to be particularly interesting. It reminded me of two recent events in which I saw this same situation play out in the media, one in reality and one within pop culture. The topic of gay football players has long been a taboo, unspoken topic in our society, as gay men participating in most sports is an unspoken topic, but in the overly masculine sport of football, it seems to be even more taboo.

    First of all, in the recent film, Valentine’s Day, Eric Dane, from the popular TV series, Grey’s Anatomy, plays a closeted professional football player that eventually comes out to his fans and his team in a press conference. In this film that focuses on mainly heterosexual relationships around Valentine’s Day, Eric Dane and Bradley Cooper represented the only LGBT-identified couple in the film, and of course, they were both upper-class, able-bodied white gay men. I have never seen this scenario of a closeted gay football player in a film or television series before, but hopefully this film will open a discussion on negotiating sexuality within male-dominated, hypermasculine sports.

    Secondly, a linebacker for the New Orleans Saints football team, Scott Fujita, very openly came out in support of LGBT rights during the last football season. In fact, he was one of the main celebrities that lent their names to sponsor the National Equality March in Washington D.C. last fall. Fujita pro-LGBT rights stance originally came out when another football player, Baltimore Ravens linebacker Brendan Ayanbadejo, also came out in support of LGBT rights. In discussing his decision to be an open proponent of same-sex marriage and other LGBT rights, Fujita said:

    “I think there will be a third player who expresses support for gay marriage … and a fourth player, and a fifth, and so on. All it will take is someone who asks more guys their opinion. By and large, the business of football is still pretty 1950s, where the status quo and conformity to the principles of “just shut up and play football” are intact. But the athletes themselves are more than that. We’re more than just football players, and many of us are much more open and tolerant than we get credit for. The reality, however, is that the locker room just isn’t the place where these issues are discussed, and your everyday beat writer for the local sports page doesn’t get paid to ask those questions.”

    Let’s hope that these two examples of LGBT-identified or ally football players, recently covered in the media, will open up a discussion about sexuality and what is considered the status quo in male-dominated sports.


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