I’ve been trying to write this post for the better part of the month, but every time I tried I felt like I was being over sensitive and mean. I’m always grateful for the help that our allies have given in the fight for marriage equality and equal rights. But, when straight people start to complain about not being welcome in queer spaces, I wish that they would all go away.
Let me back up a bit. A month ago I was at a party hosted by a former professor and her wife. A lot of former students go, and not coincidentally these students are mostly part of the LGBT community. Naturally all of us migrated toward each other and hung out on the porch.
Afterwards, a straight colleague of mine mentioned that one of the lesbians in the circle joked that her and her new husband weren’t welcome in the group. She was very offended by this, and I really didn’t know how to respond so I kind of shrugged it off and said she was probably kidding. Which she most likely was, but my colleague was having none of my reasoning.
I just didn’t feel bad for her at all. She was jokingly ‘kicked out’ of a space full of queers, when the LGBT community is regularly pushed out of homes, jobs, and businesses. Not being welcome in places and getting pushed out of heterosexual spaces is a common event for queer people.
Also, the LGBT community needs queer only spaces. “Straight only” spaces are everywhere. You can see it walking down the street with a couple holding hands, or at a restaurant exchanging kisses. I don’t get to feel comfortable in public showing any signs of affection toward my girlfriend. I don’t get the privilege of people assuming that my girlfriend and I are a couple. I don’t know when it’s safe to introduce my girlfriend as my girlfriend, but she has the opportunity to introduce people to her husband all of the time.
So, I honestly don’t care if straight people don’t feel welcome in queer spaces. Because they shouldn’t have to, and I don’t want them too. This is where I start feeling like an asshole. I preach inclusion but at the same time want to kick people out. But in reality straight people don’t need to be included in queer specific spaces, they’re included everywhere else. It’s like asking why there isn’t a straight pride parade. There are straight pride parades every day, just look around you. Straight people get to live open without assumptions or fear because of their sexuality.
Like I said, I’m grateful for the true allies that continue to fight for equal rights for the LGBT community. But that doesn’t give you a free pass into queer spaces, and you don’t get to complain when you aren’t welcome.