“What the hell is queer tho????” was the question posed by Fiona in response to our podcast about dating. We thank Fiona for her important question and we posed the question to some people and below is their response:
Queer to me it means freedom, strength and inclusivity. Freedom as it expresses a freedom to explore identities that don’t necessarily conform to a specific label. Strength because of the challenges faced to simply exist. Inclusivity because it is an umbrella term that creates space but does not limit it.
I don’t label myself but I find it easier to say someone is queer as opposed to gay or lesbian. It is encompassing and it is an umbrella under which more people can be represented. It has created an identity that is freeing and is beyond sexuality. It allows freedom.
Queer is freedom. Queer is the right to express your sexuality and gender in a way that makes sense to you. Queer is a way of thinking and viewing the world. Queer is accepting the right of all people to express their gender and sexuality in a way that makes sense to them. Queer is fighting for everyone’s right to be who they are, to feel what they feel and to exist in the world free of worries about the way they do or don’t gender and/or sexuality. Queer is freedom from any sort of expectation and a license to do you in any way you see fit.
Being queer means:
– A refusal to categorize myself.
– A struggle for freedom I.e feeling and doing whatever the fuck I want without harming anyone else
– Having to shed *so much* Ethiopian/Christian/Cishet patriarchal cultural indoctrination
– A labor of love to build healthy relationships with myself and my loved ones
– An ability to experience love in expansive ways
– A lifelong adventure to discover who I am
– Being in firm opposition to everything that made me ashamed to exist
– And being a part of the struggle for queer people to live freely and without shame, oppression, or violence