Friday, April 30, 2010

Gay & lesbian diversity

When you think of gay men and lesbian women, what demographic of people usually come to mind? Generally, we think of liberal-minded white Western people. But sexuality absolutely transcends such rigid borders. People of many different backgrounds can feel same-sex attraction and love. The following three recent stories in the news are evidence that there indeed exists diversity.

"Christian music star Jennifer Knapp comes back and comes out" from CNN
& "Chely Wright Is Gay: Lesbian Country Singer Comes Out In People" from HuffingtonPost
Two female country artists come out as gay. That's right, the country music industry has LGBT-identified individuals. This is just showing how even in traditionally conservative-value sectors, there still exist LGBT people. Both Jennifer Knapp and Chely Wright say that they're happy to be out now too.

"New magazine braves risks to give voice to Arab homosexuals" from the LA Times
It has typically been taboo to be sexually out in the socially-conservative Arab world, so the debut of this homosexual-oriented magazine is definitely quite phenomenal. However, the distribution of Mithly remains rather low. But this marks only the beginning, right?

"United States of Tara: Television's Most Unremarkable Coming Out Ever" from Queerty
(Queerty may have explicit advertisements, so please be aware of that if you decide to click through to watch the clip from United States of Tara)
In this episode, Marshall comes out to his father in a highly anticlimactic kitchen scene. His dad barely even reacts. They were in the middle of another conversation when Marshall blurts out his orientation, and his dad simply just briefly acknowledges his outing and then continues on with the previous conversational topic. How wonderfully accepting.

Certainly, through these four examples, the norms or stereotypes we usually associate with gays and lesbians don't quite make sense. The LGBT community in country music and in the Arab world are starting to gain some level of representation, and a father treats his son's moment of outing with nonchalance. Let's say this is progress is a positive direction. :-)

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