an example of a straight atheist
Let’s talk about atheists and heterosexism. Or rather: let’s talk about atheists being heterosexist while thinking they’re fighting heterosexism.
Gay kids are not a punishment. Their lives are not your rhetorical tools, and it is hateful and evil to wish abusive parenting on them for the sake of “Maybe then they will learn”. I’m not gay, but I’m not straight either, and I have Catholic grandparents who vote Republican and watch Fox News. I haven’t come out to them yet for fear of their reactions. The fact that someone out there would be celebrating that situation, like my existence is some kind of amusing jab at them, betrays the fact that straight atheists such as these (pictured above) don’t actually care about helping any of the gsrm identities — they care about taking shots at theists, even at the expense of the oppressed. Continue reading
Yes, I do.
That’s not “we” because I can’t speak for all of us, but yes, yes I do want attention. I want the asexual spectrum to get attention. I want everyone to know about it. I want every mention of sexual orientation, every sentence that begins “gay, straight, or bi” to include the word ace — on everything from the official Planned Parenthood website to guilt-tripping publicity stunts on Tumblr. I want there to be a book on asexuality among the shelves of others in my school’s diversity lounge. I want there to be a book on asexuality in my school’s main library. I want it to be impossible to forget about us. Every time a form asks for my orientation, I want there to be an accurate box to check.
“You just want attention.” Yes, of course I do — but when you say this, I know what you really mean: “You want more attention than you deserve.”
In other words, by claiming asexuality doesn’t deserve acknowledgement and education efforts, you’re saying that we’re supposed to stay quiet and that the way it is is the way it should be. That the damage the culture does to us is inconsequential.
There are aces who took years, decades, to find the words for their feelings, aces who subjected themselves to experiences they didn’t want because they were pressured into thinking they had to, aces who thought there had to be something wrong with them, who were taught that sexual attraction was an essential component to being human and who had to come to the conclusion that they were broken — and if you go through accounts of our experiences before we learned about asexuality, you’ll see this word over and over again: broken, broken, broken, a product of confusion and self-loathing and shame. They suffered because of ignorance and you’re saying that they deserved it. That their lives and their mental health are not worth enough for them to hear that they’re not alone and that it’s okay.
You’re saying that preventing that from happening isn’t worth it because it would be too inconvenient for you.
You think this is just a ploy to look “special”? You think we have any incentives to lie?
Of course some of us would want attention. It’s the least that we deserve.
First of all, because some aces are queer.
In theory that should be enough for you.
However, since apparently you’re still reading past the first sentence, perhaps you’re interested in considering another (albeit lesser) reason. This post is going to approach the issue from the perspective that not all aces are queer, at least not via being asexual, and in doing so, it’s going to demonstrate how raising awareness for those non-queer individuals still has additional residual benefits. To clarify, I’m writing this post as a response to those in the queer community who fear that asexual visibility will somehow prove harmful to young non-ace queer people, muddy the waters with identities that aren’t as important, or even provide cishets with further justifications for oppression.
On that note, an alternative title for this post could be: “A Personal Journey in Becoming Less of a Heteronormative Crapbasket”.
I used to think I was straight.
Through introspection and education, I climbed out of that box because it didn’t fit me, and yet there are people would push me right back in again.
As understandable as it is that LGBTQ+ communities* would want to protect their safe spaces from cisgender straight people, if they’re going to do that as well as exclude people like me, then they had better offer a different reason for choosing to do that, because I am not straight.