Queer: August 2002 Archives

I'm not a fan of marriage in any form, but queers have a right to be as conventionally careless and silly as anyone else. Still, let's not make it a requirement.

The Washington Post, Chicago Tribune and San Francisco Chronicle, among major U.S. newspapers, have been publishing gay and lesbian unions for some time already.

So what the hell took the Times so long?

Besides biting the hand that feeds you, it's just plain wrong!

Madison Square Garden and the New York W.N.B.A. team, Liberty, continues to ignore, if not just plain snub, lesbian fans of women's basketball.

[One lesbian fan, Robyn Overstreet,] says Liberty and Garden management suppresses the presence of gay fans at games. Overstreet alleges that cameramen from the MSG network, which broadcasts many Liberty games, have told lesbian fans that they are forbidden to film lesbian couples showing public displays of affection.
Not all W.N.B.A. teams operate this way however.
The Los Angeles Sparks have signed a deal with Girl Bar, a popular social club. The Seattle Storm and the Sacramento Monarchs each had a Gay Pride event this year. The Washington team works with the Human Rights Campaign, a gay political organization, and other teams offer discounts for gay groups.
But in New York we are still shy about sex, right?
Some heterosexuals remain sorely uncomfortable with public displays of affection by homosexuals. Gays are often the victims of a double standard. Would anybody care if a banner was raised that read "Latinos for Liberty"? Probably not.

Some of the arguments against what the protesters did are just silly, such as how children who attend Liberty games and see lesbians will be traumatized or want to be become gay.

What would affect children more? Going to a Liberty game where fans are amicable or a Jets game where kids are exposed to violent, drunken brawls in the stands between male fans and the kind of language that would make Martin Lawrence blush?

Besides, while watching the Atlanta Braves in the playoffs in the 1990's, I saw Ted Turner and Jane Fonda kiss each other while they were sitting in the stands.

Now that is something no one wants to see.

Activists are planning a protest outside the Garden on Sunday, the last day of the regular season.

--and a derogation. Yes, it's nice to know I'm no longer the only homo in Chelsea (as it so seemed to me when I first moved here fifteen years ago), but can't we attract at least some people who look like they might read a book once in a while or be able to discuss a social issue other than brunch, spotting or clubs? Guy Trebay writes about New York fashion as expressed during the recent extended heat wave, and he ends up in Chelsea:

"Society," Thomas Carlyle observed in the 19th century, "which the more I think of it astonishes me the more, is founded on cloth." Manhattan society, which the more one thinks of it astonishes one the more, is increasingly founded on no cloth at all. And few neighborhoods illustrate that better than Chelsea, where some people are so heavily armored in muscle that clothes can sometimes seem beside the point.

"There is definitely the gay ghetto stereotype of the muscle queen in Chelsea, but that stereotype is being broken," said Jesus Echezuria, a salesman at a popular Chelsea men's wear shop called Nasty Pig. Mr. Echezuria was referring to a group of men whose calendars are often marked in steroid cycles and for whom "liposculpting" and "abdominal etching" are by no means alien terms. If, however, the stereotype of Chelsea as a magnet for such men is dated, you couldn't tell it from the volume of cartoon action figures strutting the streets on a torrid Saturday night.

Conformity and uniformity is stupid and oppressive regardless of the form it takes. Sometimes I think I see hope for the neighborhood in what appears to be the growing visibility of non-whites, women, young kids and even straights, of all ages, but I'm not sure it's anything more than wishful thinking, so I still worry about the sea of dumb muscle. Help, we're drowning here!

This page is an archive of entries in the Queer category from August 2002.

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