The arguments against using queer are wrong.
“’Gay’ and ‘Lesbian’ are words we chose ourselves”
Gay was used to mean promiscuous and morally destitute. A “Gay woman” was a prostitute. A “Gay man” was a philanderer. A “Gay house” was a brothel. Later the term meant uninhibited, sexually active, and hedonistic. By the mid-20th century it came to mean all those things AND engaged in sexual relations with people of the same gender. It largely supplanted “homophile” as a descriptor of LGBTQ people in the 70s but has been used as a slur since, especially during the 90s and 00s.
“Queer is a slur”
Queer gained a pejorative meaning in the early 20th century, meaning sexually deviant. It was reclaimed in the 80s, and quickly rose to prominence. “We’re here, we’re queer, get used to it,” became a rallying cry at pride marches. It was especially used by those who worried that the policies of some LGBTQ rights groups were verging toward conservatism and assimilation which was leaving people of color, trans people, immigrants, etc. out of the loop. Queer became an identity that stoop opposed to the cry to keep your head down and be presentable and quiet and private to garner the tolerance of straight society. The Queer identity was seized on by trans rights activists, people who did not neatly fit the labels of “gay” and “lesbian,” and people passionate about political causes (especially AIDS).
Like “gay” and “lesbian,” queer has continued to be used as a slur by straight people. The only difference between the reclamation of “gay” and the reclamation of “queer” is a couple years.
“Reclaiming slurs is individual, you can’t apply it to everyone.”
Queer has been used as an umbrella term longer than most of the people who call it a slur have been alive. Having lived through the 90s and 00s I remember when “gay” meant bad, when everything bad was “gay.” People sneered “gay” at me when they tried to beat me up as a kid and teenager. Gay and Lesbian are every bit the slur today that queer is, yet anyone who said that “gay” shouldn’t be used because of its history as a slur would be laughed at.
“It excludes people who don’t want to be called ‘queer’.”
Refusing to allow queer to be used in public discourse and robbing it of its history and use excludes queer people.
“LGBT is better because it’s been an umbrella longer and no one takes offense to it.”
LGBT has been used since the 1990s.
Loads of people take offense to it and its adoption was and is a fight in activist circles. There are dozens of different variation, addition of + and *, both of which are celebrated and decried in equal measure. There is endless argument over whether the “T” belongs there, whether the “B” belongs (traditionally you see most of the anti-queer rhetoric in-community coming from people who want to pare down to “LG”). People have pitched MOGAI and MOGII and GSM and GSRM. MLM/MSM and WLW/WSW get tossed around. “LGBT” has been fraught with discourse.
“Academia appropriated ‘queer’ without asking, had they talked to actual (LGBT/Queer/MOGAI/MOGII/GSM/GSRM) people they’d have know it was a slur.”
When Queer Studies began in the 1970s who do you think was teaching it? Who was taking it?
So sure, Queer is a slur, Gay is a slur, Lesbian is a slur, newsflash, to the straight world WE are slurs. All our words are taken from the slurs they called us, our identities themselves are reclaimed.
So kids, go learn your own history.Don’t listen to people on the internet making arguments in bad faith. Don’t make assumptions about what is and isn’t ancient history, or what is or isn’t settled fact.
28K notes · View notes
the ‘if i fits, i sits’ model of fanon: the Mitchells are autistic
so maybe i’m just projecting here but i think the entire Mitchell family, in the Mitchells Vs The Machines movie, are autistic as hell, and also quite probably don’t know this about themselves.
like! i absolutely loved the movie, it was incredibly funny and cute, and then on every level it was like ‘yeah this is a bunch of people who don’t quite know why they’re so weird, why mimicking normal suburban behavior never really works for any of them, why they often fail to connect even with each other because they all have very different interests and ways of coping with frustration and disappointment, because they have clashing stims and overload thresholds, because the world is just A LOT TO DEAL WITH and they all retreat and engage in different ways. but they love each other, and as soon as they accept each other’s individual strengths and weirdnesses, they click.’
like. they’re autistic. that’s a family of autistic people. that’s what’s going on there. the daughter leans full-throttle into peak meme digital absurdism because it covers her own inability to enjoy or reproduce more classically coherent art, though underneath she’s begging viewers--and her own dad--to see past the oversaturated mask of Nothing Matters Lol and to say, hey, you matter.
the dad’s overwhelmed at all times with the anxiety of being a suburban patriarch and needs to hyperfocus on woodsy survivalist stuff to have a sense of control over his life; to translate the artificial and increasingly digitally-bounded environment he’s stuck in into a more simple and authentic environment that he deeply regrets leaving. he hangs on to an ancient car, he wears the same clothes for twenty years.
the mom is trying to be a good housewife by calibrating everything she does to instagram models of domesticity-- there’s a RIGHT way to do things, and so what if they suck to do? they’re right, they look right, everyone says they’re right. their home is crammed with Live Laugh Love generic decorations that don’t even suit it because they clash with the authentic, messy, chaos of the family’s actual personality. every year her husband and daughter just clash worse, as her daughter grows up pretty unapologetically into someone the dad just can’t understand and isn’t even trying to. the mom’s tired, lost, stressed-out and jealous and full of an anger that isn’t acceptable for women to express. she’s not getting it right and she’s trying so hard and why isn’t it that enough?
the boy just fucking loves dinosaurs and gets so overloaded looking at his crush that he has to scream and throw himself out the nearest window, and i respect that immensely.
i feel like in a year or so the son is going to get diagnosed with autism, and the dad is going to say ‘what? but that’s normal. everyone’s like that. i’m like that.’ and then there’ll be a really big ‘OH!!!’ from the rest of them.
1K notes · View notes