Everyone wants to be one of the cool, oppressed people

If you want an excellent analysis of the Orlando shooting, check out Julie Bindel’s interview on Feminist Current where she names the things we should actually be talking about in this situation: primarily, MALE VIOLENCE. Also, the root causes of anti-gay bigotry, which are MISOGYNY and PATRIARCHY.

If you want the worst response possible to the Orlando shooting, check out the woman who has written an article lamenting that she doesn’t get to be one of the people who are oppressed by anti-gay mass shooters.

Biphobia and the Pulse Massacre by Elle Dowd

“When I read about Orlando, I was surrounded by straight people. Well meaning straight people, yes, allies, yes, but straight people all the same.

I was surrounded by straight people because I was at my house with my husband and my daughter. I spend a lot of time around straight people (thats what I get for marrying a cishet man), but I noticed it more today than I have any other morning. When I heard the news, I started counting down the time until I could be around queer people.”

Oh, you poor thing! You were at home with your husband and daughter when a large group of gays and lesbians were shot and killed, how awful for you!

“Being a bi woman means occupying a lot of weird liminal space. In that way we are very queer….we don’t fit well into boxes. Too gay to be straight, too straight to be gay, we are often locked out of the resources and support meant for the queer community due to biphobia and erasure while being pornified and objectified by the patriarchal male gaze of heteronormative culture. It’s no wonder that bi women are suffering from such a serious mental health crisis.”

Yes, it’s so “queer” of you to be a conventionally feminine woman married to a man. How terrible that you don’t have access to “resources” that are meant for the “queer community.” As I’ve said before, queer used to mean homosexual, but it doesn’t anymore. Now, queer means absolutely anyone who wants to claim an identity as an oppressed person. You can be a pretty, feminine woman in a heterosexual relationship and still be queer, even though at no point will you ever be treated the way homosexuals are treated.

“Being bi comes with the double edged sword of “passing.” Because I’m married to a man, and because of my high femme gender presentation, most people will assume I am straight. I do not have to worry that when I hold my spouse’s hand in public that someone will beat me. I do not worry about the state refusing to recognize my marriage. I do not worry about losing my job for being queer. I do not worry that a car driving by will roll down the window and scream slurs at me about my orientation.”

She actually knows that she does not face discrimination because of her sexual orientation, but she is still writing an article making the Orlando massacre all about her feelings. Pardon me while I roll my eyes all the way up to the ceiling.

“But the horrible thing about “passing privilege” is the closeting, the erasure. And never have I felt that so keenly as I feel it today while I mourn Orlando.”

These days the worst thing that can possibly happen to a person is being “erased.” Somehow, the fact that every shop clerk and passerby on the street doesn’t immediately know that she is bisexual is a “horrible” thing because it “erases” her. When she sees other people being actually oppressed in a way that she is not, she feels erased because she isn’t receiving that kind of oppression. Do you see what is happening here? Being a part of an oppressed class of people is now cool. It’s something people want. Instead of fighting against oppression on behalf of classes of people, Americans are now trying to get a piece of the oppression pie, because that’s what the cool kids are doing. This is deplorable.

“Thank God for the radical queer community, the people who helped me heal from some of my guilt about not being “gay enough”. They came through for me in the past, and they are coming through again, reminding me of who I am. Reminding me that I count. Reminding me that I am enough, that my emotions are valid, that my existence is resistance, that I deserve to be here.”

You needed to heal from the guilt of not being gay enough??? What the FUCK???

Forty-nine people are killed and this woman needs to give herself a pep talk about how she is here, she exists, and she counts. Well, good for you! But forty nine people are not here anymore, because they were in a gay club when an anti-gay shooter came to kill people, not at home with their straight families like you were.

It’s amazing how a mass shooting happens and people respond with “But what about ME, I’m oppressed too!” Imagine if we actually used our time and energy to fight against male violence, masculinity and patriarchy so that this sort of thing wouldn’t happen any more? But no, because doing actual hard work to change the world isn’t appealing for people who only care about their own feelings.

Advertisements

36 thoughts on “Everyone wants to be one of the cool, oppressed people

  1. “These days the worst thing that can possibly happen to a person is being “erased.” Somehow, the fact that every shop clerk and passerby on the street doesn’t immediately know that she is bisexual is a “horrible” thing because it “erases” her. When she sees other people being actually oppressed in a way that she is not, she feels erased because she isn’t receiving that kind of oppression.”

    A+ analysis!

    The so-called Left in north america has such a shitty grasp of what oppression actually means.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I also read that blog post and found it really weird. I think I’ve mentioned here that I feel invisible to the gay community myself. But that’s, like, life. To feel invisible is not to be erased. Who has the power to fucking erase me? I exist; I am capable of validating and acknowledging my own existence. What is this erasure stuff anyway? Is that like, when all your selfies disappear from your phone? Does someone exist when their selfies don’t?

    Liked by 3 people

      • I am a bisexual person who is mostly invisible to gay people as not straight unless I tell them, and, well, so what? I could choose to adopt the visual signifiers associated with lesbianism if I wanted to. Marrying a man was also something
        that I chose, the gay community didn’t make me do it.

        If it’s important to you as a person who’s bi that gay people know you’re bi, tell them? Come on, this isn’t hard. Why should a community that already has plenty of shit to deal with waste its time with this nonsense? If you want to be more involved in the community, get involved. Sitting at home with your husband bemoaning the cruelty of gay people who can’t see you for who you really are because they’re not psychic is not getting involved.

        Why can’t these people go form their own community specifically for the people who ID as “queer” but aren’t actually gay? They seem to dislike most people who’re homosexual anyway.

        Liked by 2 people

  3. I’ve never hidden the fact that I’m bisexual. I have been teased and bullied as a teenager because somehow the mean kids in middle and high school seemed to know before I put a name to it and they seemed to think it was something to be ashamed of.

    For my part, I cannot remember ever feeling much shame or anguish over it.

    Yes, it’s deeply annoying when a boyfriend assumes your sexuality means he can depend on you for a threesome – um, no. No you can’t. Or that somehow he is entitled to at least a taste of your “lesbian side” – No, you aren’t.

    I am bisexual but I’ve never been what I would call bi-romantic, that is to say, I have only ever had two women in my life with whom I would consider a long-term, serious relationship, with the rest, it’s really just sex. And frankly, I see that as a symptom of some kind of damage that must have been done somewhere along the way. I’m that jerk who won’t commit and isn’t interested in your emotional life but at least I know it so I can play to my strengths and keep that side out of play.

    My point in saying all of this is to make it clear that, in no way has my bisexuality ever caused me any kind of personal pain. The opposite is true. I stay quiet when people talk about greedy bisexuals because they’re right. It’s nice to be a person who likes sex. Sex positive is a good way to live. I recommend it.

    We’re not a disadvantaged group, not in the least.

    I cringe when I see the B in LGB. I too ended up married to a man. I am entirely indifferent to who knows or does not know my sexual orientation. As far as I’m concerned, if I’m sleeping with you, then my sexual orientation matters to you, otherwise, fuck off.

    We are so socialized as women to believe every single part of our lives must be part of the emotional buffet we offer up to the world that even women who claim the kind of sexual perspective fully available to any man somehow seem to think they have to be apologetic or have some kind of pain or turmoil about that. I see that as acquiescence to patriarchy and I’m not having it.

    There is also the fact that this was a crime committed, clearly, by a self-hating, conflicted individual who decided to use religious zealotry as a smokescreen.

    He didn’t lash out against the gay community, he lashed out at his favorite nightclub where he wanted, more than anyone knew, to fit in but could never fit in because to do so would cost him his family. He arrived at a solution. It was a hideous solution but obviously it seemed logical to him. The rest of us, gay, straight, bisexual, trans, muslim, christian, celibate or canine, had fuck all to do with it.

    And by the way, this guy was about as much of a radical muslim terrorist as some dude with a glow-in-the-dark jesus stick on his wall is the Pope.

    I’ll say this to that poster and hope someday she sees it: I’ve been saying this for days and I’m saying it now.

    Unless you had a friend or loved one in that club, this act of violence was not about you. It had nothing to do with you.

    You, however special a snowflake you may be, should just sit quietly on your lace tuffet and let the rest of us get on with the real work of ridding America of guns, providing health care and support to kids who need it so this kind of bullshit is never able to grow and leading our own private lives.

    If you can’t do that, at least limit your posts to your close friends and anyone you feel the need to “come out” to. Your reasonable, health seeking bisexual sisters are not buying this line of cowshit. You’re embarrassing the rest of us.

    Liked by 9 people

  4. I wonder when Elle, the Most special bi on the planet, was in a full time relationship with another woman? I mean a committed relationship, like the one with her “cishet” husband? Does she trot off and have quickies with girls? Passionate trysts while he’s out of town?

    I noticed also in the comments all the snowflakes piping up too, the woman in the “lesbian” relationship with the trans woman, who hasn’t done anything to even resemble a woman, oh poor thing, people don’t even see them as lesbians because her partner is a man and looks and acts like one.

    It made me sick to read this, she sounded like a trans with the indulgence, the what about me. Can’t she for one day, this particular day when lesbian women and gay men have been gunned down in a space they thought was safe, a space she’s never needed, just make it about them?

    Myself, a big old dyke, mourned, I realized that I was privileged because I did not actually know anyone in that club, there are a thousand people and more who were lovers, sisters, brothers, mothers, fathers and friends of these people who are shattered today, I can only imagine their grief and send money to their go fund me accounts to perhaps offer support in some way.

    The last thing I thought about was me, the first thing was those left behind and the lives lost, apparently the first thing was Elle thought about was herself.

    Liked by 8 people

    • Yes! She’s married, so what the hell does it matter if she’s attracted to women? Is she planning to leave her husband or commit adultery? No? Then for all practical purposes she’s living as a heterosexual. She has nothing to do with the gay community. She sounds like they’re nothing more than some cool accessories some mean shop assistant told her is out of stock, and she’ll have to – gasp – wait to get hold of.

      Liked by 4 people

  5. Wow. I like to try to forget people like whatshername exist. Good for Julie Bindel. It’s amazing how hard people work not to make the connections.

    This part: “Being a part of an oppressed class of people is now cool. It’s something people want. Instead of fighting against oppression on behalf of classes of people, Americans are now trying to get a piece of the oppression pie, because that’s what the cool kids are doing. This is deplorable.” Exactly. Exactly.

    Liked by 7 people

  6. The typical bleatings of “I,I,I,me, me, me,” from textbook narcissists who can’t stop gazing in the mirror long enough to pay close attention to tragic events that didn’t happen to them. They just complain because they were left out, and therefore “erased,” and didn’t get any of that sweet sweet attention they demand in order to keep their egos properly inflated.

    Liked by 3 people

  7. H’lo ‘sage,

    My throat honestly made a gurgling sound as I read this, when I choked on my disbelief that anyone could be so selfish and self-centered that they would even consider publishing such a piece following the massacre of more than fifty LGBT people and the wounding of more than fifty more.

    Somebody please tell me, when did this all become a f*cking contest–Who Has the Worst Oppression?–and why are we even fighting over this?

    As for bisexual people who marry into the heteronormative lifestyle…back in the day, before ‘bisexuality’ was a label, when a ‘lesbian’ up and married a man, we would just acknowledge that she’d ‘gone straight,’ because technically, all things considered, that is exactly what she’d done, garnering all of the rights and privileges that came with that life-altering decision. Now, as to whether or not she still had attraction to other women, well, it didn’t matter because, for all intents and purposes, she had essentially ‘erased’ her lesbian identity when she got involved with a man. Not to be crass, or rude, or hateful, this is only a history lesson, but the two women I knew to do this were shunned by the lesbians because, back then, married was ‘Married’ and no one wanted an angry-ass husband storming the girls’ bar looking for his wife. Twenty years later, being on the ‘down-low’ became a thing…

    Liked by 5 people

  8. How To Make Something All About You 101, by Elle Dowdy

    Elle would fit in well with a certain segment of society who can’t handle being excluded, throwing a tanty anytime it happens. You know, the ones who need everyone else to validate their existence or they’ll die.

    Liked by 3 people

  9. Yes so she says she’s married to a man and she doesn’t say she’s dating a woman at the moment, but what if they’re a polyamorous couple who are hoping to find a woman to join them in polyfidelity? Do you think that she’s now experiencing a permanent escape from homophobia if she’s in that situation?

    Yes, I would agree it’s outrageous of her to compare her pain over this tragedy to that of the victims and their families, but I don’t agree that bisexual women with men neccessarily escape homophobia.

    Like

  10. Agree with the “special snowflake” comments above, but in response to some of what’s been said about bisexuality in the comments –

    1 Way way back, many bisexual people fought for L and G rights, many were closeted, and some were shunned when they came out as bi.

    2 About “the guilt of not being gay enough” Lots of bi people grew up and lived some or much of their adult lives believing they were lesbian or gay when being bisexual wasn’t seen as real or possible. For some people, especially activists, realising you were bi and not lesbian did feel like, and was often treated as, betrayal. Still goes on.

    3 If we’re saying bisexual women face no problems beyond what heterosexual women have to live with, and whine when they should be happy to have the best of both worlds, what’s going on here?

    http://www.cdc.gov/ViolencePrevention/pdf/NISVS_SOfindings.pdf

    Lifetime prevalence of having been raped
    Bisexual women – 46.1% (98.3% male perpetrators)
    Heterosexual women – 17.4% (99.1% male perpetrators)
    Lesbian women – 13.1%

    Lifetime prevalence of experiencing sexual violence other than rape
    Bisexual women – 74.9%
    Heterosexual women – 43.3%
    Lesbian women – 46.4%

    Stalking
    Bisexual women – 1 in 3 are stalked
    Heterosexual women 1 in 6 are stalked

    Lifetime prevalence of violence by an intimate partner. Includes rape, physical violence and stalking
    Lesbian women 43.8%
    Bisexual women 61.1%
    Heterosexual women 35%

    Lifetime prevalence of being raped by intimate partner
    Bisexual women 22.1%
    Heterosexual women 9.1%

    Lifetime prevalence of experiencing sexual violence other than rape, where perpetrator is intimate partner
    Bisexual women 40%
    Heterosexual women 15%

    Lifetime prevalence of experiencing physical violence where perpetrator is intimate partner
    Lesbian women 36.3%
    Bisexual women 55.1%
    Heterosexual women 29.8%

    Lifetime prevalence of experiencing severe physical violence where perpetrator is intimate partner
    Lesbian women 29.4%
    Bisexual women 49.3%
    Heterosexual women 23.6%

    14.9% of bisexual women reported a male partner trying to make them pregnant against their will, compared to 4.5% of heterosexual women.

    Bisexual men are also more likely to experience violence from an intimate partner than gay or straight men.

    Where there’s no figures for lesbian women it’s because the study didn’t include them.

    This isn’t oppression olympics, it’s valid to be asking what’s going on here.

    Does part of the increased risk of physical and sexual violence from men come from the gay and straight worlds still being separate and many bisexual women not finding a way to belong so well in either? Isolation enables perpetrators.

    Do the myths that bisexuals are generally narcissistic, immature, impulsive, selfish, untrustworthy, unfaithful, greedy, confused, don’t know their own minds and are sexually insatiable, all make it easier for abusive men to gaslight and control?

    In a misogynist, homophobic, biphobic, pornified world, bisexual women are more objectified and dehumansised than straight women are, and differently from how lesbian women are, as well as being closer at hand for abusive men.

    It’s just one study. Needs more research, but it’s not looking like “the best of both worlds”.

    Liked by 2 people

  11. Yes to many of the above comments, as a bisexual woman married to a man I am in no way oppressed by my sexuality. Being heterosexually partnered means you avoid the discrimination etc. This woman is outrageous. There’s no place for me other than as an ally in the LGBT unless I’m homosexually partnered or single in the future. Great analysis on the wishing to be oppressed purplesage!

    Liked by 1 person

  12. The place where I really see bisexuals of either sex being disappeared is when people talk about gay people who “go straight” or straight people who “go gay”. Because no one seems to want to remember about bisexuals, these phenomena are very confusing to them. But it seems to blowback more on gay people than anyone else–“SEE? You CHOSE this.” So it’s still not what you’d call oppression of bi people per se.

    Sad thing is that with all her privilege she’s still a woman. If she really wants to wallow in oppression, maybe she could remember that and try a little frigging feminist activism for once in her life, and actually do some good.

    …NAH.

    Liked by 3 people

  13. It sounds as if she’s writing specifically for bisexuals and bi people’s sympathisers, and because of that might have left a lot of context out which some, though not all, bi people could relate to, but maybe doesn’t leap out to others. Such as – if they have an open marriage n she goes to same sex attraction people’s night clubs n bars to pick up women, I can understand her thinking, that could have been me murdered – and reflecting with deep fear n hurt on the hatred n violence shown towards all same sex attracted people. Likewise, if she’s bi romantic or homoromantic n polyamorous, and socialises with non hetero people to try to find a female significant other or others for polyfidelity – she could see herself in the victims because if she’d been in that club, in that situation, especially without her husband and with some woman, her being bisexual and in a marriage to a man wouldn’t have made any difference to her chances to survive. And yes as someone bi I agree with her there is a lot of negative misconceptions and hostility against us bis, and so it’s entirely likely she couldn’t find anyone not straight to talk to about her fears n distress over that.

    I think politics is really complicated and a lot to learn. I think it takes considerable time to get educated in it. Some women of course have never been to uni or college, or even had much formal education, haven’t had and don’t have the opportunity to study cultural things or talk to others at an ideas level. Their whole lives are and have been looking after others, or working very hard at a paid job, tons of hours to not really make ends meet. And then maybe they can just about sneak a few hours or a day here n there to go to a bar or a group or a blind date or a party. Probably looking for support or help. That was me in the 90s n early 00s. I could see I wasn’t alone. It’s only in the last couple of years, barely that, I’ve had the time to start learning the politics it seemed I was supposed to know all about and agree with at the time in order not to be maligned n excluded.

    I think queer politics appeals to a lot of women who don’t consider themselves hetero because it comes across as non critical n sympathetic to them wherever they are on a process of understanding themselves n their place in the world, even if they validly feel they don’t have any interest in politics or time to study politics. That could be where the writer is.

    Personally I believe everyone is on their own journey of understanding and shouldn’t be personally disparaged for that. We all have a lot to learn, or once did. I look to the heart. She doesn’t actually say others don’t have it worse, does she. Compassion doesn’t have to be a competition either for me. I can sympathise all across the line.

    Liked by 3 people

  14. I read the cited piece before seeing it referenced here, and had many of the same thoughts myself as the writer, as I too am a bi woman married to a guy. Was a I queer enough to go to the local vigil for the Orlando victims? Why was this affecting me so deeply, dredging up fear and anxiety and all the things? Being bi and married to a guy (granted, I do have an open marriage and a much-beloved lesbian girlfriend), I deal with this shit all the time. Every day. For decades. Yeah, I went to the vigil. And my queer-enough friends greeted me with open arms when I showed up to mourn with my community.

    Thirty three years ago, when I came out, I faced the same familial rejection and public dangers as my lesbian and gay friends. I watched and mourned as so many of my gay friends, and one cousin, died of AIDS. I hid my bisexuality from the dyke gangs in my city, who would beat the fuck out of you if you were tagged as a bi woman. I passed as lesbian when I needed to, and straight when I needed to, as a matter of simple self-preservation. Should I have let them knock my teeth out and break my fingers just to make a point of being staunchly bisexual, to stand on some sort of principle? Perhaps I should have. I missed my family so much when they turned their collective back on me from age 19 to my mid-20s and, even after I was grudgingly accepted back into the family, I was never allowed to speak of my orientation EVER until two years ago when I tried to off myself at age 50. I’ve lost a ridiculous number of employment opportunities because I present as butch, and was informed on the QT that I was not hired because “we don’t hire lesbians”. So, yeah, it’s been an absolute dream being such a special snowflake, reviled and rejected by the straights and the lesbians. Gay guys are the only folks who have been consistently accepting and supportive, thank god for them.

    My relief that a gay Latino guy friend who lived in Orlando until very recently and who frequented Pulse when he lived there, was physical and palpable. One of my coworkers was not so lucky; her brother and his husband were at Pulse and were shot. Do those things help me qualify as being close enough to be entitled to mourn what happened? Who the fuck knows or cares. As a bona-fide queer and a decent human being, I am allowed to feel ALL the feels about and to mourn this terrible, tragic event. That is enough. This has affected my entire community, the LGBTQAI community, who I cherish even if they don’t cherish me. My history is a shared history, when all is said and done.

    I have appreciated following and reading this blog, to learn about perspectives of all sorts, but this post and the anti-bi rhetoric in the comments filled me with despair. I am grateful for the commenters who stood up for the bi experience, especially kath who laid out the statistics of which, sadly, I am one when it comes to violence against and depression and suicidal tendencies in bi women. And to those of you who say my experiences as a queer woman are not up to your particular snuff, I say a hearty fuck you.

    Like

    • Hi Bisexual Butch. Clearly you have faced discrimination for your sexual orientation. The woman in this article openly states that she hasn’t faced discrimination because she is feminine and people see her as straight. Of course you can mourn for the Orlando victims! Anyone can mourn for victims of violence, regardless of sexual orientation.
      My problem with this writer, and the reason why I was mocking her, is that she is living a comfortable life being perceived as heterosexual and she is trying to make a tragic situation all about her and her feelings. It’s the all-about-me attitude I have a problem with, not the fact of her being bisexual.
      I definitely live in a tolerant area. I’ve never heard of anyone hating bisexuals here. However, I believe you and I’m very sorry for the abuse you have endured. That is absolutely not right.

      Liked by 1 person

    • I feel for you over your horrendous suffering experiences! I too am a bi woman who has experienced parental and other family rejection, long-term abuse and harrassment, social ostracisation, domestic violence, a mental breakdown, and a suicide attempt because of the responses of the people around me to my being bi. Although, it’s maybe sad that in my youth I simply didn’t question the given verdict that I didn’t belong in the non-heterosexual community, and I don’t really see a place there for me any more than anywhere else. And – I agree – that there’s an absolutely catastrophic lack of empathy over the experiences bisexual women often have in this post, and in some of the comments. Also, to be frank, I think that putting a standard on how much someone is allowed to suffer before their suffering is acknowledged or deemed acceptable, and, before they’re not attacked and treated as contemptible for expressing it, is both misguided and cruel. So, I have found this post alarming, so even though I’ve enjoyed others of the posts here – such as the ones, on lesbian history I read on Saturday, which I found really interesting – I’m leaving reading this blog. So, thanks for the good stuff and goodbye @PurpleSage.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Gosh, Nienna. Of course, you have a right to your feelings and you are welcome to react the way you want. But I do not mean any offensive against the bisexual population here, I was only highlighting the fact that a woman was making a tragedy she wasn’t a part of all about her feelings, which is in poor taste. I don’t quite understand your comments about “putting a standard on how much someone is allowed to suffer before their suffering is acknowledged or deemed acceptable.” Surely anyone’s suffering is worth acknowledging, and I don’t think that she is in the wrong for feeling upset when people are murdered. Of course she’s upset, anyone would be, regardless of sexual orientation. However, I don’t believe it was right for her to write an article making this all about her when she is living a heterosexual lifestyle and it was gays targeted.

        Liked by 2 people

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s