Viewport width =
March 19, 2012 | by  | in Opinion |
Share on FacebookShare on Google+Pin on PinterestTweet about this on Twitter

Bent

Some queer people describe themselves as ‘straight-acting’.I don’t like it. Now, I see where these people are coming from. Some guys prefer to get with guys who are more masculine, and some prefer more stereotypically gay types, so as a way of describing oneself, it sort of works, but c’mon… straight-acting? The last time I checked, straight guys don’t like other guys’ dicks.

The same thing happens for queer women too. Ladies who could ‘pass’ for straight are described as ‘femmes’. Some lesbians like to wear lipstick and have longer hair and can outrun you in heels, and some don’t, and both are awesome, but neither is pretending to be heterosexual. Neither is straight- acting. They’re not acting—they’re being themselves.

‘Straight-acting’ is a descriptor that applied to the queer folk of yesteryear, when we literally had to act like stereotypical straight people to avoid being attacked. Such a term, and the baggage that comes with it, is a hangover from bygone days.

The only thing that makes you straight- acting is pretending to like the opposite gender exclusively. If you’re not doing that, you’re not acting like a straight person. The only thing that makes a person gay or lesbian or bisexual is liking the same gender. Everything else is extra. If you’re gay, and you pretend to like women, then you’re straight-acting. If you’re gay and masculine, then you’re masculine, not acting like a straight guy.

If you’re a masculine man, or a feminine lesbian, are you acting? Nope. If I’m masculine, it’s because I am masculine (whatever ‘masculinity’ is). It implies that we are imitating masculinity rather than being masculine, as though a gay man being masculine is an unnatural thing.

By the same token, associating the the word ‘gay’ with femininity doesn’t fit either. There are certainly feminine gay and bisexual guys, and masculine lesbian and bisexual girls, but it’s not the way you act that makes you gay, it’s who you’re attracted to. Is it a sort of internalised homophobia to protest “Oh, don’t worry, I’m not like those homos. I totally act straight.”? Yeah, I reckon so. Straight guys don’t have a monopoly on being socially masculine.

So go forth and be fabulous! Or not—if that’s not you, then go forth and be whomever you want to be, but whatever you do, don’t do it to be straight-acting.

Share on FacebookShare on Google+Pin on PinterestTweet about this on Twitter

About the Author ()

Comments are closed.

Recent posts

  1. VUW Halls Hiking Fees By 50–80% Next Year
  2. The Stats on Gender Disparities at VUW
  3. Issue 25 – Legacy
  4. Canta Wins Bid for Editorial Independence
  5. RA Speaks Out About Victoria University Hall Death
  6. VUW Hall Death: What We Know So Far
  7. FANTA WITH NO ICE
  8. New Normal
  9. Come In, The Door’s Open.
  10. Love in the Time of Face Tattoos

Editor's Pick

Uncomfortable places: skin.

:   Where are you from?  My list was always ready: England, Ireland, Scotland, Wales, puppy dogs’ tails, a little Spanish, maybe German, and—almost as an afterthought—half Samoan. An unwanted fraction.   But you don’t seem like a Samoan. I thought you were [inser

Do you know how to read? Sign up to our Newsletter!

* indicates required