Thursday, June 28, 2007

Are Gays More Racist Than Straights?

I had an IM conversation yesterday with the man I am currently dating about racism within the gay community. The exchange stemmed around racial insults from the previous evening at an Uptown bar but the incident seemed to confirm a theory close [gay and straight] friends inside and outside the movement have relayed to me over the years: gay men are more racist than their heterosexual counterparts.

Theories are sometimes not based in fact but my numerous experiences within the movement for gay rights -- and life -- sometimes force me to conclude otherwise. One of the most racially insensitive people I have ever met is a former University of New Hampshire classmate who routinely sought to put his own agenda above the other students, administrators and even local activists. The collective movement for gay rights often sends a similar message through its efforts [or lack there of] to stop the HIV/AIDS epidemic within communities of color, to support activists in Bushwick and other predominately neighborhoods of color and to remedy other problems within these populations. This inaction could stem from a lack of knowledge or resources. Yet it remains a highly unfortunate fact some gay man choose to oppress their brothers and sisters of color through their continued racist and discriminatory ideals. These gays, one can certainly argue, have no right to inflict this harm because their local, state and national governments continue to stigmatize and discriminate against. There is certainly no easy solution to remedy racism within the gay community but a sad irony remains.

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