© Kate Mayne
“What word? Queer?” She nodded and her face looked like she was holding back a heartburn belch.
“It’s just so crude. And unkind. People think unkind things when they say that.” She added.
That can be true. And people think unkind things when they don’t say that -- and sometimes, people make unkind comments and policies, regardless of whether they ever articulate a word like “queer.”
I understand what my mother’s saying though. The word “queer” has been used as an insult -- the kind of thing a person says as he’s kicking in your teeth. It could be hard to hear something like that said of your child -- even if your child’s the one saying it. I get it. And she’s not re-claimed the word as I have. Not only does using the word positively deprive it of its negative power, I think it’s accurate. I am odd -- and not just in my sexual orientation. Queerness is defined relative to the way things are usually done -- and sometimes difference is cause for celebration. I am queer, and the family I’ve created is queer too. Indeed, I hereby extend an invitation for you to engage in queer parenting. (See, it’s true what the homophobes fear: I am here to recruit you.) Read more...
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