Thursday, September 03, 2009

Dan Savage, Chill With Your Race Baiting

Dan Savage just won't give up pimping that thoroughly discredited meme about the Prop 8 loss in Ca-lee-forn-ia.

“I do know this, though: I’m done pretending that the handful of racist gay white men out there—and they’re out there, and I think they’re scum—are a bigger problem for African Americans, gay and straight, than the huge numbers of homophobic African Americans are for gay Americans, whatever their color.

"This will get my name scratched of the invite list of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, which is famous for its anti-racist-training seminars, but whatever. Finally, I’m searching for some exit poll data from California. I’ll eat my shorts if gay and lesbian voters went for McCain at anything approaching the rate that black voters went for Prop 8.”

Damn, just when we thought the drama over Prop 8 had subsided a bit, here comes Savage pouring gasoline on the smoldering embers.

Yo Dan, you want fries and A1 sauce to go with your roasted shorts?

From where I, other Black GLBT people and our allies sit, you're part of the racist gay white male club. You definitely need to attend one of those anti-racism training sessions you trashed at the 2010 Creating Change Conference in Dallas February 3-7..

Get this through your thick head. African-Americans make up only 9% of the total population of California. We're significantly concentrated in just five counties, Alameda, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Sacramento and San Diego. Prop 8 won by a half a million votes.

If we were as powerful a voting bloc as you claim, Gray Davis would have survived his 2003 recall vote, Tom Bradley would have been elected governor of California in 1982 and Ronald Reagan would have never set foot in the governor's mansion in Sacramento..

How do you explain Alameda County (Oakland) voting AGAINST Prop 8, especially since there are lots of chocolate flavored folks living there?

But I and the African-American GLBT community are more than a little sick of your race baiting attacks on our community. It's got our allies concerned and is pissing off our supporters in the African-American community as well..

I guess it escaped your attention that some of your major legislative supporters have been members of the Congressional Black Caucus such as the current chair of the CBC, Rep. Barbara Lee (D-CA) and civil rights icon Rep John Lewis (D-GA).

You've also had consistent support from Julian Bond, the late Coretta Scott King, California NAACP chair Alice Huffman.and other African-American leaders who see this just as I do as a civil rights issue.

We have our knuckleheads such as Bishop Harry Jackson and his sellout minister friends who are doing the dirty work of the Traditional Values Coalition as card carrying members of the Forces of Intolerance. Black GLBT people and bloggers have just as forcefully called them out as I'm doing to your soon to be shorts eating behind right now.

But as many of us continue to point out, the righteous anger you have needs to be focused on the people who were responsible for Prop 8's crafting, collecting the signatures to get it on the California ballot, financing the campaign and who voted for it.

And those people disproportionately share your ethnic heritage.

And hello, did it not occur to your vanilla flavored privileged behind that there are Black GLBT people in groups such as the National Black Justice Coalition who are busting their behinds to get marriage equality passed?.

The GL community has failed at intersectionality, cultivating and being good allies and cracking down on the racism within the GLBT family that causes discourse. It has also failed at crafting a pro marriage equality message that resonates in my community because of the lack of melanin in the GL community leadership ranks.

While I have seen some slight improvements recently on those fronts, we still have a long way to go

In addition, the constant pushing of the 'we're just like you' message and holding out affluent white gay men as the standard bearers for the community is a factor leading into why there's so much right wing pushback against GLBT rights besides the yuck factor and faith based homophobia.

The 'we're just like you' message, especially when being articulated by white gay males is interpreted by Black people in the context of our historic centuries old animosity rooted in slavery.

And I can't and won't forget as a transperson fighting for my community's civil rights that some of the people opposed to trans inclusion in the GL community, the movement we helped start, ENDA, hate crimes and other civil rights legislation over the last 40 years have been white gay males.

So when Savage's HBO television show cranks up, my television will be tuned to another channel since it's obvious he has no regard or respect for my African-American community or his Black GLBT/SGL allies.

But seriously Dan, chill with the race baiting. It's so 20th century.

Crossposted from Feministe and the Bilerico Project

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