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Doing porn is kind of like being gay: it’s none of your business and I don’t understand why you care.

—James Deen

Dear journalists,

Please don’t use words like “admitted” or “confessed” when referring to a celebrity who has come out as bi or gay/lesbian.

As a journalist, you are supposed to be impartial, which means you don’t get to editorialize the connotations of someone coming out.

In this day and age, perhaps they didn’t “admit” or “confess” their sexual orientation; perhaps they announced it, gleefully shouted it, got it off their chest, shared it, or just mentioned it.

Don’t attach shame to what deserves none.

Love,
Kate

It’s National Coming Out Day today…

…and so here’s my yearly announcement: I’m not straight.

I typically identify as “queer” because it’s a blanket term that encompasses the complexity of my not-always-static sexual orientation. However, you can use any of these other terms to describe me, if you want: bisexual, pansexual, Kinsey 2, heteroflexible.

I have straight-passing privilege, which means that I benefit from being frequently misidentified as straight, because of the way I look and the way my partner looks. Though this isn’t a privilege I’m happy about, there are lots of people who would envy me for it, so I have to acknowledge that I’m lucky to be straight-passing. It’s impossible to know how many times it has spared me from incidents of homophobia.

Wishing you the best of luck with any coming out you want or need to do, today or any other day.

there was a thread on reddit tonight asking women what interests/skills/talents they find instantly sexy in a man.

i said: playing a musical instrument/being interested in music, being a good writer, involvement in theatre and/or improv.

apparently people liked my comment because it got a lot of upvotes… but several people (men) commented to say some variation of, “your ideal man is gay.”

look, i don’t care how “funny” you think that is - it’s factually incorrect and it’s also disgusting to say that.

i went to an arts high school, and honestly? there weren’t even that many gay guys there. i don’t even think there was necessarily a higher proportion of male queerness at my school than there was in the real world, which i guess would be surprising to some people.

but it’s not surprising to me. an interest in the arts is not a “feminine” quality. humans are, as a rule, interested in the arts. that’s why the arts have survived this long in our collective culture.

i can honestly say that i see no correlation in my own life between guys who are gay and guys who are interested in the arts. my own boyfriend, who is the straightest guy i know, is a pixel artist, has a strong interest in music, and comes with me to improv shows regularly. my brother, who’s primarily straight, plays more than 4 different musical instruments, writes his own songs, and even takes theatre history classes at school. and there were a bunch of boys on the improv team i coached, and the teams i was a part of in high school, who were straight, as far as i’m aware (liam, sasa, nick, connor, stefan, alex) but are nonetheless brilliant improvisors and very much interested in that side of theatre. many of them even pursue theatre in other ways (i know nick, for example, was in summerworks last year, stefan is at actors’ college, and connor was considering going into theatre tech as a profession).

i think some straight guys accuse artsy guys of being gay because they’re jealous of that artsiness. and they have a right to be jealous of that, because artsy guys are incredibly sexy and desirable and interesting and wonderful. but not all of them are gay. in fact, maybe one-tenth of the guys i met in my theatre classes were even a little bit gay.

(plus, who the fuck cares if i want to date a guy who’s “a little bit gay” anyway? i’ve dated two bi guys and there really is no practical difference, incase any biphobic stereotypin’ motherfuckers are out there and are convinced that bi guys can’t be good boyfriends to ladies. they can.)

i bought a copy of the canadian press stylebook today, and started flicking through it on the streetcar ride home. (we’ve already been studying CP style in class, but i like the immediacy of having it in book form. am i weird?)

i have to say, i’m really impressed with CP’s policies on things like race, gender, and sexual orientation. they’re very progressive for a national institution.

there are actually specific rules that say you shouldn’t mention someone’s ethnicity, gender identification, or sexual orientation unless it’s relevant to the story. and when it is relevant, they tell you to check with the person about the specific terminology they prefer to use (e.g. black vs. african-canadian, gay vs. queer, transgender vs. transsexual) and then use those terms, unless they’re needlessly offensive (e.g. faggot).

we had a senior CP editor come in yesterday to talk to us about CP in general, and he told us that one of the major issues they’re debating for the next edition of the stylebook is whether the singular “they” should be allowed in cases where an individual is trans (or genderqueer, etc.) and “they” is their preferred pronoun. apparently this is a big point of debate at CP right now but it’s looking like it’s going to happen.

regardless, in the 2010 edition i bought today, it says, “use a term the person in question uses (explain if necessary) and a pronoun consistent with how they live.”

you just know i’m going to do a story one day where i interview people who use gender-neutral pronouns like “ze,” and CP is gonna be totally cool with that. AWESOME. i love canada!

macolon2:

I knew there would be a meme coming soon! Click on the picture for full debate

I laughed so hard when he said that. Apparently he understands the importance of the separation of church and state (or the separation of morality and legality) but doesn’t want to admit that those separations should also apply to the subject of same-sex marriage. HYPOCRISY AND IDIOCY ALL AROUND!

macolon2:

I knew there would be a meme coming soon! Click on the picture for full debate

I laughed so hard when he said that. Apparently he understands the importance of the separation of church and state (or the separation of morality and legality) but doesn’t want to admit that those separations should also apply to the subject of same-sex marriage. HYPOCRISY AND IDIOCY ALL AROUND!

Anonymous said: ME FUCKING TOO. ME. FUCKING. TOO. I'm convinced that all homophobic politicians are all closeted gays.

My opinion on this was really validated for me when I found out that two of the (male) leaders of the world’s biggest “ex-gay” organization left their jobs so they could be together.

Like, seriously… if you don’t want me to think that you’re secretly harboring homosexual feelings, don’t attack homosexuals with the burning rage that only someone personally involved could feel.

a paraphrased conversation I just had

  • Me: You should never assume someone's sexual orientation; wait until they tell you what it is.
  • Random dude: But sometimes assuming is good, because if you think someone's gay, you can make them feel more comfortable by acting gay-friendly around them.
  • Me: ...Why don't you just act gay-friendly ALL THE TIME?

It’s not that complicated.

tobitastic:

amydentata:

In a cissexist, essentialist, racist, etc. society, if you don’t seriously examine your sexual preferences, it is all but guaranteed that prejudice will slip in. Asking people to examine where their preferences come from to see if there’s unrecognized bigotry involved isn’t equatable to forcing them to sleep with someone.

(summary of a long Twitter exchange)

We could all benefit from interrogating the way internalized messages influence our romantic and sexual relationships the same way we interrogate how they influence our non-sexual relationships.

I think about this idea a lot, because I’m a bi femme who only ever seems to be attracted to women if they are androgynous or boyish in some way… I’ve often wondered if that’s due to societal conditioning or if that’s who I’m really attracted to.
IMG_9002 by NoCheesePlease-CapturingReality on Flickr.I love teh young gayz!

IMG_9002 by NoCheesePlease-CapturingReality on Flickr.

I love teh young gayz!