I recently posted this photo to the ‘this is oz’ website, an Australian initiative which basically involves people posting an anti-homophobia message in the form of a photo of themselves with a handwritten sign. The posts vary from playful, to political, to passionate pleas for equality, to more abstract statements.
No. No she could not.
I chose it because I am proud to live in a society where, as a queer woman, I can have any fun at all! Where I am not gaoled, forced into straight marriage, beaten, silenced or killed. Because I could be raised by two amazing women and because I can live in a community of brilliant, out contemporaries who I adore.
I chose it because, in fact, I do see my queer community as capable of providing more of the kind of fun I want to have than my straight friends’ communities do. I often wonder where I would find a community if it weren’t for my sexuality. I see a lot of heterosexual friends (note I see a difference between heterosexual and straight) rally around politics or sports, past times or areas of study. But I choose to find the fun among queer politics, sports, past times and areas of study.
Being queer has given me a sense of history and culture. In a country where a lot is tossed around about a lack of history (white history anyway) and a lack of coherent, unifying culture, I feel I am part of an international shared history and language of queer. Though my community is extremely varied I feel a sense of nationhood and ownership and safety. We have citizens to be proud of and revere; writers and artists and activists and musicians and philosophers. And for me personally, I found that history and sense of unity in the family home where my wonderful mothers gave me a sense of my personal and global history – the events leading to the possibility of my mere existence! I had an A-Grade upbringing by queers.
From the moment of self-realisation or ‘outing’ queers are explaining and justifying their sexual practices and relationships to the world. The number of overly personal questions that get asked is amazing. The positive of this (the fun part if you will) is that my queer friends are wonderfully analytical and productively critical about their relationships. We search for new ways to love each other and fuck each other and strive to find a model that makes us happy. We don’t always get it right but I am proud and privileged to relate to people that care about how they love me and how I treat them and want to experiment with human interaction.
I’m going to say it: fucking queer women is fun. Now I can’t make comparisons as my experience with men is limited, but I just can’t imagine men being as…skilled… 🙂 Oh look, any straight friends reading this are going to have a tantrum now… One straight recently joked that lesbians shouldn’t be allowed to use strap-ons – “you’ve made your choice” she quipped. Now the delivery was hilarious, but there’s an underlying jealousy there no? Because we get to have it all… Am I due for another straight tantrum now? I don’t care! The women I have loved have been bright, engaged, caring, supportive, adventurous, willing, playful, skilled, beautiful and yes – Fun. So I couldn’t let this blog go by without acknowledgment of the joyous sex part of sexuality.
Maybe I think you’re jealous because you have to stifle any urges you have for the same sex to fit in with your societal position. Whereas I can have a sexuality that is fluid and will not suffer the wrath of my friends if I deviate from their expectations of my gender and desire. Maybe you are jealous because I have sports teams I can join just for my kind and I have parties and events designed to appeal to my sexuality and desires. Or because some of my people are so clever they developed a whole queer theory. Are you jealous because I can define the rights I am fighting for and have a framework for analysing this very confusing world? Or because there are websites devoted to people posting messages of support for ME.
If you aren’t jealous, you should be!
DISCLAIMER: I don’t think the people I have referred to here read my blog, but if you do and you find it problematic that I have used your comments in this way, please let me know. I do not wish to offend you, but I do think it’s worth me bringing up stuff I find problematic. If I am even talking to you, I obviously like you so hold you to a higher standard than the general population. And I’d be willing to chat and clarify. xxx