I’m not that old. I’m 37. But for the first time in my life I’m at an age where I can look back and observe the behaviour of a younger generation coming through, which is an interesting adjustment.
When I came out in 1993 there were similar issues going on – racism against gay asians, internalised homophobia etc. The thing is, at that time, there was no internet, so to interact with other gays you would join groups and go to bars, and these places were way more social than they are now.
So back then, if you said something racist or homophobic, someone would explain why that sucked to you. And you would learn from your mistakes. The other aspect to this was that if you said something racist or homophobic, your language didn’t spread that far, and the damage that it did was mitigated as a result.
The internet has changed all of that. Racist and homophobic statements now spread quickly and over a great distance, and affect a lot more people. Your racist, homophobic Grindr profile can be viewed by literally thousands of other men. Furthermore, there is no one there to say “those views are offensive” because the user can just block opinions they don’t like.
So I see a generation of bigots coming through, who aren’t being “nipped in the bud”. They are saying racist and/or homophobic things, and are avoiding any of the ramifications of their language.
That’s why sites like mine exist. That’s why sites like mine need to exist. I think its unfortunate that I even feel the need for this blog, but I am committed to keeping it here because I think to myself, “where else will people even hear this point of view.”
There’s such a push for conformity these days. It appears more and more people are joining herds, rather than standing out on their own and being themselves. They see language like “no fems” and “no asians” and repeat it, almost unconsciously.
This is not ok with me. I don’t know how it can be ok with you.
It’s not ok to make other members of your community feel like shit just because you haven’t worked through your own issues relating to your sexuality. It’s not ok to make other members of your community feel like shit just because you haven’t worked out how to write a profile that isn’t offensive.