My friend Son of Baldwin said it best about this list: “Mostly male, mostly white. Same old patriarchy, slightly different orientation.”
OUT (full disclosure: I, usually, do not consume this magazine) has released their annual power list, and it is a telling list because of the most powerful gays and lesbians only about 4 (maybe 5) are POC, of which 3 are Black —what about the Asians, Latino/as (LaQueers), American Indians, the mestizos, the multiracial?— and only about 11 of the most powerful are women. What this tells us, us Brown and Black faces and minds and bodies, is that we are not at the table. That they made and published this list as celebratory, without analysis, and no pause tells us another thing: they—mostly male, almost entirely white, almost entirely cisgendered—don’t care and they are not looking to pull out seatS for us anyway. What we need to do is demand our place. Or better yet, if the movement does not want us, our bodies, our minds, our stories, our truthS, let’s make another fucking table. And let’s make our table better; they can join us, if they want—They wont; when the bullied is invited to the popular table, it is so hard to leave it— but it is not necessary, and we wont let them thrust upon us the labels of “difficult,” “separatists,” or “hyper-sensitive”; we are not. We will be responding to what you tell us everyday from your chat room talks to your boardroom talks, that you—mostly male, mostly white, mostly cisgendered— have set up the game so that you have the advantage, you have the power and we have only a precious few magical negros. We will respond to it by saying “Fuck You, Fuck Whiteness, Fuck Your so-called Power, Fuck Your Table!” Because hunty, I have more power in my house sitting at the dinner table across from my Baptist pastor father, talking about the news while I am wearing black nail polish and mascara, than Anderson Cooper ever has any day of the week. The little sissy walking down the street in East Saint, or North St Louis, or on the rough neighborhoods on the Chicago’s South Side has more power to change minds and their world than any Ryan Murphy production or Neil Patrick Harris skit.
Hunty, when you talk about “power” define it accordingly and make explicit how narrow your scope it. Because honey, if you want to talk about power, let’s talk about powa, okay?