Immediately after the election, my colleague/friend Emma Jackson at Goldsmiths asked to be part of The Sociological Review‘s rapid response collection to the US election. I said yes even though I was mostly in a fog about what to write beyond making it for, by, and about queers. No surprise there.
Shortly thereafter, Rhon Manigault-Bryant’s brilliant post “An Open Letter to White Liberal Feminists” on the African-American Intellectual History Society site launched. I was inspired by Manigault-Bryant’s words when she wrote that she was “delighted” that white women were forced to finally reckon with violence and injustice that women of color faced daily. In writing a contemporary historical geography of New York City, I often struggle with the inane notion that lgbtq lives have gotten “better” when there has never been evidence of decreasing rates of LGBTQ youth suicides, harassment of LGBTQ people of color, or violence against trans people. In fact, a recent New York Times piece reports that LGBTQ people are more likely to experience hate crimes than any other minority--although the simultaneous increasing level of support or at least tolerance for LGBTQ people may be leading to more confidence in reporting hate crime laws.
It is this seeming “tolerance” that also, as my lesbian-queer New Yorker research participants pointed, take overt hatred, violence, harassment, homophobia, transphobia, and heteronormativity, and make it covert. And, with the election, the covertness evaporated and became overt. I wrote “We Never Left Laramie: White LGBTQ Consciousness Post-Election 2016” everyday for a month to make sense of my feelings and the feelings of queers of all colors that were being shared with me. I also wanted to remind white LGBTQ people of how much they are needed and called to struggle against injustice for all marginalized people.
The full post is embedeed below or click here to read it. While I do not look forward to more struggles, I am delighted to know I will stand alongside so many amazing people in the work toward justice.