The Scholar & Feminist Online just published its latest volume, "A New Queer Agenda," and it is nothing short of spectacular—like, I need to reiterate this in all caps: SPECTACULAR. Need I mention that it's FREE?
Guest editors Joseph N. DeFilippis, Lisa Duggan, Kenyon Farrow, and Richard Kim offer us a comprehensive volume—divided into three sections: "Queer Issues, Queer Visions," "Profiles, Interviews, and Narratives," and "Campaigns and Organizing Efforts"—that tackles the LGBT communities neoliberalist tendencies that have resulted in a politics of acclimation (gay marriage, anyone?) but little else. In the "Introduction," DeFilippis' addresses the thematic issues of the volume which all address the community's vapid desire for "equality" in lieu of justice, specifically economic justice. His introduction made me squee at various moments; por ejemplo:
"At the exact same time that more money is raised and spent on the battle for gay marriage, there has been a surreal, stony silence from most of our national LGBT movement about the current economic crisis. It is beyond maddening to see tens of millions of dollars poured into the fight for marriage equality across the country at the expense of addressing issues that are more urgent for so many people in our community. How is it that economic justice is not considered “a gay issue” by our national organizations, elected officials, funders, statewide organizations, and media?
The answer to this question is easy. With few exceptions, the leaders of our national LGBT organizations have been white and middle class. (A look at the list of executive directors of the past ten years at Freedom To Marry, GLAAD, the Gay Lesbian Straight Education Network, Human Rights Campaign, Lambda Legal, the National Center for Lesbian Rights, the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, PFLAG, and others, provides easy evidence of this.) These white, middle-class leaders have probably never been on welfare or spent a night in a homeless shelter or in prison; and they may not personally know anyone who has. For them, what constitutes a “gay issue” is limited to the concerns of white, financially secure American citizens like themselves. I cannot be more blunt than that. “Gay issues” are, for the most part, determined by the kind of people for whom the inability to get married is the only real form of discrimination they face on a daily basis."
Gloriously to the point, this passage had me exclaiming "SMACKDOWN!" DeFilippis' argument is that the mainstream LGBT does not speak for us; it only speaks for the 1% (gay white men). "Marriage equality" is just a symptom of the pervasive economic inequalities faced by our community; disparities between the LGBT community and its straight counterpart are too large to continue to ignore.
Your summer reading begins here, Vp community.