Nowadays, How ‘Queer’ Is ‘Queer’?

Responds Katie Herzog:

Herzog writes:

Indeed, Davidson and Schankler look, from the photos in the paper, like your typical middle-aged new parents, but, rest assured, they are not. For one thing, Schankler prefers the pronouns they/them and the title Mx. For another, as you will notice from the photo accompanying the article, she’s wearing a jacket over her dress, which, the caption tells us, is “gender nonconforming.” Very queer.

Now, I will admit that my first reaction to this article was to roll my eyes back in my head and pull out my application to a lesbian seperatist commune in Taos, but then I remembered that it’s against the rules to question other peoples’ identities (unless that person is Rachel Dolezal) so I reigned in my annoyance.

But then I read it again, and I thought about some lesbian friends of mine back in North Carolina who just had a kid last year. Unlike Davidson and Schankler, who, I presume, used the body parts they were born with to make a kid, my friends had to go about it the old fashioned ways: turkey baster, with sperm purchased from a sperm bank.

That was the easy part.

9 Comments for “Nowadays, How ‘Queer’ Is ‘Queer’?”

  1. posted by Jorge on

    It looks like we’re arriving at that time in minority history when we won’t be able to make progress anymore because the moment we start to succeed our contemporaries are stabbing us in the back.

    You know I remember when I was in college there was this woman who… oh, let’s just call her a younger version of NYC First Lady Chirlane McCray. But college is a place where it’s socially acceptable to talk about the intricacies of your sexual preferences and gender identity. As one gets older, in most contexts that kind of information is strictly private. But it is precisely such private affairs that make someone “Queer”. People forget so easily, or am I being naive?

    Of course I have questions, lots of them. But only because that LGBT buzz is in my ear. Non-traditional head of household titles and men who wear canopy-shaped trousers wouldn’t be unheard of even if gay people didn’t exist. It’s only that young parents are too damn nervous.

  2. posted by Tom Scharbach on

    The flap over “How Queer is Queer” reminds me a bit of the folderol of the early 1980’s, when everyone and their Aunt Bobby’s dog offered new parents their heartfelt and vociferous opinions about circumcision. New parents were exhorted, nagged and browbeat by the anti-circumcision crusaders, and religious reasons offered no safe haven from the noise.

    Human beings have a bottomless capacity for focusing on the unimportant and this current round — “How Queer is Queer” — is just the latest installment.

    Sorry Scott Shackford is terribly offended, yet again. He seems to make a career out of it.

  3. posted by Lori Heine on

    Or, people could try actually knowing who they are. Then they wouldn’t need to obsess over frivolities that really have no basis in determining their identity.

    “Queer” really means…what? Queer to whom? And by what standard?

    I’m approximately 80% into the lesbian range, on any scale that makes sense. I’ve got about a 20% potential to be attracted to men. What does that make me? I suspect it makes me like millions of other women. But that doesn’t begin to define me, any more than it does anyone else. Were I to accept such mindless categorizing, I would simply consent to be herded.

    I feel zero need to join a tribe in order to identify myself. It doesn’t make me any less real.

  4. posted by JohnInCA on

    Well, I’m glad that Shackford finally understands what “cultural appropriation” means.

  5. posted by normthisgay on

    I found this site because, some years ago, I bookmarked a 2002 post by Dale Carpenter about the transgenderist appropriation and exaggerated importance of the Stonewall riots. My memory may be fuzzy, but I was at least left with an impression that this blog provided a refreshing, skeptical alternative to the agenda peddled by dominant organizations presuming to speak for the entire gay population, like consistently ineffective HRC and hypersensitive GLAAD. At the same time, the blog evenly distributed its criticism; it still took Republicans and conservatives—obviously, the bigger threat to the gay marriage priority—to task.

    Reading posts from the past few months, however, I now see a reflexive contrarianism and obsession with leftist shenanigans but little-to-no acknowledgement of the sins committed by the right. Don’t get me wrong: I’m disgusted by leftist activists hawking the rotten fruit of critical theory (not to mention the accompanying hysteria). But to spill so much ink over Adam Rippon’s possibly, but not certainly, misinformed comment about Mike Pence without any substantive discussion (or, unless I missed it, even a brief mention) of the circumstances surrounding Blaze Bernstein’s murder is really disappointing. Unfortunately, it seems typical of the reporting here. It suggests a conservative bias—not the functionally extinct old-school conservatism to which an impotent minority still clings but the current, morally bankrupt conservatism encouraged by Trump.

    • posted by Lori Heine on

      We’re getting jerked around about artificially-manufactured issues. Most of the faux outrages we’re supposed to get worked up about, we’d never even have heard of if not for professional homocons and their hysterical alarms.

    • posted by Jorge on

      There’s a Wikipedia entry on the Independent Gay Forum that provides an interesting point or two.

      Mr. Miller has slowed down so to speak and there are habits he falls into, and as you have noticed, he has an agenda that includes a lot of things he passes the buck on. I would suggest that relevance vs. trivialty are in the eye of the beholder.

      • posted by Lori Heine on

        I agree. And I look at IGF from a writer’s perspective.

        Writers who specialize in politics have to stake out a territory, and set parameters they can live within. I can’t even appeal to every libertarian in the world. Trying to influence all of us is like herding those proverbial cats.

        But when appealing turns into outright pandering, that’s dangerous. I’m afraid that Miller has taken to pandering in a big way.

        TJIII, or whatever he called himself, was forever making comments about libertarians that crammed us all into a narrow, right-wing box. That’s simply untrue. The libertarian spectrum goes all the way from far right to far left. The point of the comment I made–that set Miller off–was not that Noam Chomsky was absolutely marvelous, but that he’s proof that libertarians can be FAR to the left.

        It evidently suited Miller, however, to smear me as a far-left whacko. I guess he needs villains. Propagandists generally do.

        Actually, when we’re asked whether we’re liberal or conservative, most libertarians will say that we are both. We don’t see liberalism and conservatism as mutually exclusive–to us, that’s a false dichotomy.

        Staking out a territory that panders to social conservatives is an especially dangerous thing for a homocon to do. I don’t know why Miller thinks that’s a good idea. I guess it’s just what he’s getting paid to do, and so he thinks no farther than that.

  6. posted by Kosh III on

    Yet another post about a trivial issue no one has heard about (or cares about) except for regressive ideologues who live in the comfy blue enclaves of DC NYC LA.

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