By. BRANDIN LAKEE TOLLIVER.
A new term being thrown around a lot lately is the confusing Post-Gay. Films are being called post-gay. Entertainers are being called post-gay. Attitudes, behaviors and actions are now post-gay. Writers and bloggers are using it trying to sound fresh and current, but I’m still confused. What the hell does post-gay mean?
Urban Dictionary defines is as; the notion that homosexuals should be able to define their identities by something other than sexual preference. The website About Relationships defines it as; term used to describe same-gender-loving individuals that do not identify or associate with mainstream gay culture. And Merriam-Webster hasn’t even caught on yet. So apparently, it’s Gays who don’t want to be labeled as only gay. I get it.
To further illustrate the point I hope to make, I found in an excerpt from a Huffington Post interview with Natasha Lyonne of Orange Is the New Black, stating:
“…it breaks her heart when something is called a “gay show.” Asked about it again, in regards to “But I’m a Cheerleader,” Lyonne explained, “This idea that back then we had made a ‘gay’ movie, [Megan] was a ‘gay’ cheerleader, and now I’m a ‘gay’ prisoner … is such a glaring injustice.” Lyonne compared this way of typifying sexuality to heterosexual characters: “You would never say, ‘Oh what’s this movie about?’ ‘It’s this guy, he’s a straight lawyer and he falls for this straight doctor and they go on a straight honeymoon.’”
I too share Lyonne’s perspective. Thus needing to find a more, for lack of a better word, DL term for what is being attributed to and defined as Post-gay. The mere use of the word gay implies sexual preference; a homosexual preference. So how does the term Post-gay define said individuals without identifying their sexual preference as its definition insists, if we still require the use of the word Gay? If we really intend to be “post-gay,” we need to move past the need to stick the word Gay in front of everything and everyone; gay movies, gay actors, gay bars, gay rappers, etc.
We still live in an era where not every same-gender-loving person is a fist-pumping, out and proud homosexual. Some still find it hard to even admit to themselves they’re gay. Which is another reason, when on the hunt to name my blog, I kept those individuals in mind. Wanting them to not feel so bombarded by Gay, Out and Pride, and be able to view my site without fear of having to slam their laptop shut every time someone walked past. Yes, some of ya’ll are way deep in that closet… still. We haven’t all embraced being gay to now be post-gay, after-gay, past-gay, over being gay.
I’m all for progressiveness and I’m all about the definition, of course. Because I personally don’t believe that everything I do needs to be defined by my sexuality, or is even a byproduct of my sexuality. But I don’t feel the term and its definition are a match. It’s not working for me. Try again.