Hat tip: HopeOverFear
Commentary: Gay is not the new Black
By LZ Granderson
Special to CNN
Editor’s note: LZ Granderson is a senior writer and columnist for ESPN The Magazine and ESPN.com, and has contributed to ESPN’s Sports Center, Outside the Lines and First Take. He is the 2009 Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) award winner for online journalism and the 2008 National Lesbian and Gay Journalists Association (NLGJA) winner for column writing.
(CNN) — Far from flowing rainbow flags, the sound of Lady Gaga and, quite honestly, white people, stands a nightclub just outside of Wicker Park in Chicago, Illinois, by the name of The Prop House.
The line to get in usually stretches down the block, and unlike many of the clubs in Boystown and Andersonville, this one plays hip-hop and caters to men who may or may not openly identify as gay, but without question are black and proud.
And a good number of them are tired of hearing how the gay community is disappointed in President Obama, because they are not.
In recent weeks, one would have thought the nation’s first black president was also the nation’s biggest homophobe. Everyone from Oscar winner Dustin Lance Black and radio personality Rachel Maddow to Joe Solmonese, the president of Human Rights Campaign, the country’s largest gay advocacy group, seem to be blasting Obama for everything from “don’t ask don’t tell” to Adam Lambert not winning American Idol.
In their minds, Obama is not moving fast enough on behalf of the GLBT community. The outcry is not completely without merit — the Justice Department’s unnerving brief on the Defense of Marriage Act immediately comes to mind. I was upset by some of the statements, but not surprised. (After the Tuskegee Syphilis Study, President Ronald Reagan’s initial handling of AIDS and, more recently, Katrina, there is little that surprises me when it comes to the government and the treatment of its people.)
Still, rarely has criticism regarding Obama and the GLBT community come from the kind of person you would find standing in line at a spot like The Prop House, and there’s a reason for that.
Despite the catchiness of the slogan, gay is not the new black.
Black is still black.
And if any group should know this, it’s the gay community.
Bars such as The Prop House, or Bulldogs in Atlanta, Georgia, exist because a large number of gay Blacks — particularly those who date other Blacks, and live in the Black community — do not feel a part of the larger gay movement. There are Gay Pride celebrations, and then there are Black Gay Prides.
There’s a popular bar in the heart of the nation’s capital that might as well rename itself Antebellum, because all of the White patrons tend to stay upstairs and the Black patrons are on the first floor. Last year at the annual Human Rights Campaign national fundraiser in Washington, D.C. — an event that lasted more than three hours — the only Black person to make it on stage was the entertainment.
Rest of article at link above.
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