LGBTI?

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Wow, I go to bed and wake up to a bunch of people pissing on the LGBT[...] community. How out of the ordinary.

I get the rationale behind the "why do they need so many labels? can't they just be normal? isn't that what they want in the first place?" thinking, to which I reply "Ha ha, no."

Labels are necessary. Not mandatory, but necessary. If you don't want to embrace a label, that's absolutely fine, but identity requires identification. In order for a person to construe their sexual and gender identity, they need to be able to identify it and communicate it accurately to others. Labels help you do exactly that (though again, they aren't mandatory. If you can convey your sexual and gender identity without them, feel free).

Secondly, the ridiculous idea that you should be "just human" or something nonsensical like that is that it conveniently ignores societal context. LGBT+ people are still getting killed or suffering violence and prejudice even in first world countries. They are still denied legal rights and widely discriminated against. By denying them the ability to identify themselves, you are aiding the erasure that keeps them outside mainstream media (something that would help perceive them as acceptable to society), keeps their problems from being spoken about, and allows society to quietly sweep them (and what happens to them) under the rug.

Thirdly, it's none of your business. I am frankly quite tired that every time the LGBT[...] community gets discussed in a place predominantly straight like this one, it quickly devolves into the straight people complaining about the ways the LGBT+ community annoys them, or is doing things wrong, or is otherwise deficient. And I'm pretty sure those same people go right back to saying places like these are super tolerant of minorities and there's no need for things like Gaymer Con or anything of the sort.

Darken12:
Wow, I go to bed and wake up to a bunch of people pissing on the LGBT[...] community. How out of the ordinary.

I get the rationale behind the "why do they need so many labels? can't they just be normal? isn't that what they want in the first place?" thinking, to which I reply "Ha ha, no."

Labels are necessary. Not mandatory, but necessary. If you don't want to embrace a label, that's absolutely fine, but identity requires identification. In order for a person to construe their sexual and gender identity, they need to be able to identify it and communicate it accurately to others. Labels help you do exactly that (though again, they aren't mandatory. If you can convey your sexual and gender identity without them, feel free).

Secondly, the ridiculous idea that you should be "just human" or something nonsensical like that is that it conveniently ignores societal context. LGBT+ people are still getting killed or suffering violence and prejudice even in first world countries. They are still denied legal rights and widely discriminated against. By denying them the ability to identify themselves, you are aiding the erasure that keeps them outside mainstream media (something that would help perceive them as acceptable to society), keeps their problems from being spoken about, and allows society to quietly sweep them (and what happens to them) under the rug.

Thirdly, it's none of your business. I am frankly quite tired that every time the LGBT[...] community gets discussed in a place predominantly straight like this one, it quickly devolves into the straight people complaining about the ways the LGBT+ community annoys them, or is doing things wrong, or is otherwise deficient. And I'm pretty sure those same people go right back to saying places like these are super tolerant of minorities and there's no need for things like Gaymer Con or anything of the sort.

I agree. At first, I was like them. I didn't understand why "they would want to further segregate themselves by making up all these labels". But society needs labels to identify with. Like you said, they're not mandatory, but necessary. I mean, yeah, there are females who have sex with other females without identifying as "lesbian". But that doesn't mean that lesbians are somehow "wrong" for wanting to identify with "lesbian", when there are so many people who want to dismiss them as "doing it for attention" or "oh, you could get a man easily if you stopped dressing like a dyke".

But, back to the original topic: yeah, I think it should be "LGTBI", because there's no harm in putting another letter at the end of the acronym to give more exposure to the issues of intersexual people, who, and correct me if I'm wrong, are even more of a minority than trans people.

Darken12:
A is for Asexuals, which are non-straight.

I've seen the term QUILTBAG thrown around (it's easy to remember, as far as mnemonics go). Queer/Questioning, I always forget what the U stands for, Intersex, Lesbian, Transexual, Bisexual, Asexual, Gay.

But even that ignores a group... the pansexuals.

Darken12:
Wow, I go to bed and wake up to a bunch of people pissing on the LGBT[...] community. How out of the ordinary.

I get the rationale behind the "why do they need so many labels? can't they just be normal? isn't that what they want in the first place?" thinking, to which I reply "Ha ha, no."

Labels are necessary. Not mandatory, but necessary. If you don't want to embrace a label, that's absolutely fine, but identity requires identification. In order for a person to construe their sexual and gender identity, they need to be able to identify it and communicate it accurately to others. Labels help you do exactly that (though again, they aren't mandatory. If you can convey your sexual and gender identity without them, feel free).

Secondly, the ridiculous idea that you should be "just human" or something nonsensical like that is that it conveniently ignores societal context. LGBT+ people are still getting killed or suffering violence and prejudice even in first world countries. They are still denied legal rights and widely discriminated against. By denying them the ability to identify themselves, you are aiding the erasure that keeps them outside mainstream media (something that would help perceive them as acceptable to society), keeps their problems from being spoken about, and allows society to quietly sweep them (and what happens to them) under the rug.

Thirdly, it's none of your business. I am frankly quite tired that every time the LGBT[...] community gets discussed in a place predominantly straight like this one, it quickly devolves into the straight people complaining about the ways the LGBT+ community annoys them, or is doing things wrong, or is otherwise deficient. And I'm pretty sure those same people go right back to saying places like these are super tolerant of minorities and there's no need for things like Gaymer Con or anything of the sort.

I realize I'm quoting you twice now, but you raise a really good point. Call me "politically correct," but I'm getting pretty tired pf people who've never had to experience such bigotry telling people who have to just get over it. Honestly, that doesn't strike me as too different from telling someone who's depressed to just "get over it."

It's fucking "gaymer-con" all over again.

trty00:

Darken12:
Wow, I go to bed and wake up to a bunch of people pissing on the LGBT[...] community. How out of the ordinary.

I get the rationale behind the "why do they need so many labels? can't they just be normal? isn't that what they want in the first place?" thinking, to which I reply "Ha ha, no."

Labels are necessary. Not mandatory, but necessary. If you don't want to embrace a label, that's absolutely fine, but identity requires identification. In order for a person to construe their sexual and gender identity, they need to be able to identify it and communicate it accurately to others. Labels help you do exactly that (though again, they aren't mandatory. If you can convey your sexual and gender identity without them, feel free).

Secondly, the ridiculous idea that you should be "just human" or something nonsensical like that is that it conveniently ignores societal context. LGBT+ people are still getting killed or suffering violence and prejudice even in first world countries. They are still denied legal rights and widely discriminated against. By denying them the ability to identify themselves, you are aiding the erasure that keeps them outside mainstream media (something that would help perceive them as acceptable to society), keeps their problems from being spoken about, and allows society to quietly sweep them (and what happens to them) under the rug.

Thirdly, it's none of your business. I am frankly quite tired that every time the LGBT[...] community gets discussed in a place predominantly straight like this one, it quickly devolves into the straight people complaining about the ways the LGBT+ community annoys them, or is doing things wrong, or is otherwise deficient. And I'm pretty sure those same people go right back to saying places like these are super tolerant of minorities and there's no need for things like Gaymer Con or anything of the sort.

I realize I'm quoting you twice now, but you raise a really good point. Call me "politically correct," but I'm getting pretty tired pf people who've never had to experience such bigotry telling people who have to just get over it. Honestly, that doesn't strike me as too different from telling someone who's depressed to just "get over it."

It's fucking "gaymer-con" all over again.

I guess you could also apply it to people that identify as "African-American". I'd count as "Black British" on census forms and whatnot, but even though I don't personally identify as "black" or any specific racial/national identity, that doesn't mean that others shouldn't, if it gives them pride (which, in this context, is "opposite of shame", because they likely would've grown up in a society that's shunned them simply for existing/being born a certain way).

You could probably extend to numerous other labels, like "Buddhist", "Atheist", "European", "French", "Mexican", "Latino", "bi-racial", "transgendered". The only reason I feel iffy about pansexual is because I just don't see a need for it practically in discussion (due to failing to see the practical distinction between "bisexual" and "pansexual" - correct me if I'm wrong, but "intersexual" isn't a "third gender"; it just happens to fall in between the two, if we're going by gender being a scale rather than binary), it has an air of mild pretention to me, and it potentially implies that non-pansexuals value appearance more than love, which is, obviously, incorrect - although I'm not claiming that any and/or all pansexuals think that. At all.

I'm not denying their existence - I'm just saying that I don't think we need to invent new terms for something that can be explained in a much simpler way. Like, "bicurious". What is that? We could all say we're curious about having sex with the same sex, no matter how jarring the experience may be - some people are just more open-minded (jeez, even that sounds pretentious) like to try different things. I mean, if I had a male friend and he proposed sexual activity with me, in private...I don't know if I'd necessarily say "no". But I personally identify as "heterosexual"...mostly, anyway. But I guess that's because you can only ever informedly label yourself, because you're the only one that knows your own body and sexuality. So...whatever. Don't know quite know what the completion of my point was, but I hope it's clear enough for people to understand.

My university LGBT society had to deal with this for so long despite only a couple of people being bothered. First we had to change from LGBT to MSGI (Minority Sexual and Gender Identities) which was a problem since no-one knew what the hell we were. Then when we decided to change it back a couple of people identifying as Queer didn't like it wanted it to be Queer society (no-one else did because we thought it would put people off joining). Eventually we compromised on LGBTQ, but even that didn't please some people. This was about two years of faffing. I think since I left its reverted back to plain old LGBT.

I think our local group uses LGBT+ as a fairly elegant solution. Lesbian, Gay, Bi, Trans + anyone else who doesn't identify with any of the usual categories.

Relish in Chaos:
I agree. At first, I was like them. I didn't understand why "they would want to further segregate themselves by making up all these labels". But society needs labels to identify with. Like you said, they're not mandatory, but necessary. I mean, yeah, there are females who have sex with other females without identifying as "lesbian". But that doesn't mean that lesbians are somehow "wrong" for wanting to identify with "lesbian", when there are so many people who want to dismiss them as "doing it for attention" or "oh, you could get a man easily if you stopped dressing like a dyke".

Pretty much, yes. Especially because by saying "labels are useless! stop using them!" you are denying people the right to self-identify. Not to mention the fact that nobody is ever going to stop using the straight label, so straight people will always be able to self-identify.

trty00:
But even that ignores a group... the pansexuals.

Everyone hates pansexuals (/joke). :P

But seriously, maybe PQUILTBAG(A) (with a silent P). Or just go for QUILTBAGPIPE like they suggested before.

trty00:
I realize I'm quoting you twice now, but you raise a really good point. Call me "politically correct," but I'm getting pretty tired pf people who've never had to experience such bigotry telling people who have to just get over it. Honestly, that doesn't strike me as too different from telling someone who's depressed to just "get over it."

It's fucking "gaymer-con" all over again.

Yeah. A lot of people want the LGBT+ community to be invisible. They complain about our parades, about how we "shove our sexuality in everyone's faces", about how we invent unnecessary labels, about how we're all trying to be special and get attention. They want us to be invisible. If we're invisible, they don't have to acknowledge we exist. They don't have to include us in the entertainment industry or the media. They don't have to waste the time of the Congress with laws for people who don't exist. They don't have to give us legal protection from discrimination, hate crimes or people who try to "cure" us. They don't have to acknowledge our problems. They don't have to waste time educating a society to accept us, to end the hostility we cannot fight because we just plain don't have the numbers to do that.

I'm sure all these things are profoundly inconvenient for straight people, so I can see why they'd prefer we went back to the closet and kept quiet like good little oppressed minorities.

Alright, so just for the record:

LGBTI = Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans, Intersex

And referring to people: lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgendered, intersexed

Right?

someonehairy-ish:
I think our local group uses LGBT+ as a fairly elegant solution. Lesbian, Gay, Bi, Trans + anyone else who doesn't identify with any of the usual categories.

Yeah, that's good. It's all-encompassing, and still retains the "LGBT" acronym, since acronyms like "GSM" probably aren't going to be accepted with "LGBT" being more prevalent. "LGBT+", although I think "LGBTI" would be pretty all-encompassing. I seem to think too much about acronyms.

Darken12:

Relish in Chaos:
I agree. At first, I was like them. I didn't understand why "they would want to further segregate themselves by making up all these labels". But society needs labels to identify with. Like you said, they're not mandatory, but necessary. I mean, yeah, there are females who have sex with other females without identifying as "lesbian". But that doesn't mean that lesbians are somehow "wrong" for wanting to identify with "lesbian", when there are so many people who want to dismiss them as "doing it for attention" or "oh, you could get a man easily if you stopped dressing like a dyke".

Pretty much, yes. Especially because by saying "labels are useless! stop using them!" you are denying people the right to self-identify. Not to mention the fact that nobody is ever going to stop using the straight label, so straight people will always be able to self-identify.

Indeed. Essentially, there are numerous people whose identities, or self-identifications, are a big part of their being, and how they conduct themselves in everyday life. Taking that away from them could be perceived as even more erasure in an already predominantly cisgendered and heteronormative society. And like you said, if straight people are still going to identify as "straight", there needs to be opposites: "gay". And then there's "bisexual", "trans" as opposed to "cis", etc.

Darken12:

trty00:
I realize I'm quoting you twice now, but you raise a really good point. Call me "politically correct," but I'm getting pretty tired pf people who've never had to experience such bigotry telling people who have to just get over it. Honestly, that doesn't strike me as too different from telling someone who's depressed to just "get over it."

It's fucking "gaymer-con" all over again.

Yeah. A lot of people want the LGBT+ community to be invisible. They complain about our parades, about how we "shove our sexuality in everyone's faces", about how we invent unnecessary labels, about how we're all trying to be special and get attention. They want us to be invisible. If we're invisible, they don't have to acknowledge we exist. They don't have to include us in the entertainment industry or the media. They don't have to waste the time of the Congress with laws for people who don't exist. They don't have to give us legal protection from discrimination, hate crimes or people who try to "cure" us. They don't have to acknowledge our problems. They don't have to waste time educating a society to accept us, to end the hostility we cannot fight because we just plain don't have the numbers to do that.

I'm sure all these things are profoundly inconvenient for straight people, so I can see why they'd prefer we went back to the closet and kept quiet like good little oppressed minorities.

The only person I can think evidently flaunts his sexuality in people's faces is Louie Spence. I don't like him not because he's gay, but because he genuinely seems like he's putting it on. There was literally a moment where he started unexpectedly gyrating in front of this guy on a panel show - and then predisposed homophobes are going to watch that and be like, "See? Gay people are sex-mad borderline-rapists!"

IMO, any inconvenience that straight people get as a result of gay people is, probably in most cases, nowhere near as bad as the inconvenience gay, bisexual, transgendered, and intersexed people get simply for being who they are. Personally, despite the whole "nurture over nature" that exists with the gay/bisexual/transgendered minorities and not with racial minorities, I emphasize with sexuality/gender minorities because, as a black guy (I almost never say "as a black guy"; it sounds a bit too high-and-mighty for me), I know what it's like to have people place stereotypes, often inaccurate ones, on you simply for being born a certain way.

In a nutshell...can't everyone just get along?

Relish in Chaos:
Indeed. Essentially, there are numerous people whose identities, or self-identifications, are a big part of their being, and how they conduct themselves in everyday life. Taking that away from them could be perceived as even more erasure in an already predominantly cisgendered and heteronormative society. And like you said, if straight people are still going to identify as "straight", there needs to be opposites: "gay". And then there's "bisexual", "trans" as opposed to "cis", etc.

Yup. And I, for one, do not oppose to a very large and complex form of categorisation. Taxonomy has taught me that if people genuinely want to, they will use a horribly unwieldy, arbitrary, vast and complex system of classification. Saying "we can't possibly create a system to classify every form of sexual or gender identity!" is pretty much just like saying "we can't possibly create a system to classify every species of living being in the planet!"

Relish in Chaos:
The only person I can think evidently flaunts his sexuality in people's faces is Louie Spence. I don't like him not because he's gay, but because he genuinely seems like he's putting it on. There was literally a moment where he started unexpectedly gyrating in front of this guy on a panel show - and then predisposed homophobes are going to watch that and be like, "See? Gay people are sex-mad borderline-rapists!"

I have no idea who that guy is, but there's a line between "out and proud" and "sexual harassment", and he shouldn't use the former to justify engaging in the latter. Being out and proud is well and good, but not to the point of sexually harassing people.

Relish in Chaos:
IMO, any inconvenience that straight people get as a result of gay people is, probably in most cases, nowhere near as bad as the inconvenience gay, bisexual, transgendered, and intersexed people get simply for being who they are. Personally, despite the whole "nurture over nature" that exists with the gay/bisexual/transgendered minorities and not with racial minorities, I emphasize with sexuality/gender minorities because, as a black guy (I almost never say "as a black guy"; it sounds a bit too high-and-mighty for me), I know what it's like to have people place stereotypes, often inaccurate ones, on you simply for being born a certain way.

In a nutshell...can't everyone just get along?

I completely agree, and I am a firm supporter of the concept of the kyriarchy (which depicts a system of oppression, sexual, racial, gender-based and otherwise, as an interlocking network) precisely because it helps people empathise with one another. I personally support the activism of all oppressed minorities, even if I tend to focus on feminism and LGBT+ issues, I try to broaden my perspective and support other marginalised groups as well.

MorphingDragon:

For example Bisexual and Pansexual are completely different things. Bisexual refers to physical sexual attraction of varying levels to both sexes. Pansexual refers to attraction to things not necessarily physical, such as personality or intelligence.

And why doesn't Bisexual cover that?

I'm heterosexual - This doesn't mean that I don't find personality or intelligence attractive in women as well as simple physical sexual attraction(or even in lieu of that, in some cases).

So does this make me partly pansexual? I wouldn't have thought so. In the same way that I'd imagine many, many Bisexual people (those who identify as such) are going to be attracted to things other than simple physical attraction...

Again, whilst I'd never take away anybodys right to label themselves how they want, or start up a movement to try and get recognition for that, and so on, and so on. I still question the actual need for it beyond simple attention seeking, or trying actively to be different... I guess I just genuinely believe that everyone would all be a lot happier if they didn't have to sit around contemplating exactly what label they need to apply to themselves, then go round demanding that everyone in the world acknowledge the existence of that label. In that way I'm a simple person, with a simple outlook on life.

My final point, however: Please don't try to take the above as me actively opposing people who choose to carry these labels(that is to say, choose the labels, not the sexuality/gender that comes with the label) or that I'm denying their right to exist - Whilst I may not personally see the need for 37 billion labels for slightly differing levels of sexuality or gender, I'm not one of those people - and if there are people who feel there is that need, who feel they need these labels, and that they need their own specific set of supports in place, and are willing to go out and forge those supports for others who feel the same way, then it's not hurting anyone and good luck to them.

Soon we will be fighting over which group gets to be named first in the acronym.
I think it is just fine to assume that LGBT includes "everyone not hetero".
It doesnt mean I do not think they should be represented, but too much details is sometimes unnecessary.

My university just went with LGBTQ - Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transsexual, Queer/Questioning.

Sure, there's a hell of a lot more out there, but it gets absolutely ridiculous when you're trying to make promotional materials to have an insanely long acronym. Though there were discussions of what the society actually covered (i.e. everything), no-one was ever serious about changing the name - all felt LGBTQ was sufficient. Thus, that is what I use these days.

Darken12:
Wow, I go to bed and wake up to a bunch of people pissing on the LGBT[...] community. How out of the ordinary.

I get the rationale behind the "why do they need so many labels? can't they just be normal? isn't that what they want in the first place?" thinking, to which I reply "Ha ha, no."

Labels are necessary. Not mandatory, but necessary. If you don't want to embrace a label, that's absolutely fine, but identity requires identification. In order for a person to construe their sexual and gender identity, they need to be able to identify it and communicate it accurately to others. Labels help you do exactly that (though again, they aren't mandatory. If you can convey your sexual and gender identity without them, feel free).

Secondly, the ridiculous idea that you should be "just human" or something nonsensical like that is that it conveniently ignores societal context. LGBT+ people are still getting killed or suffering violence and prejudice even in first world countries. They are still denied legal rights and widely discriminated against. By denying them the ability to identify themselves, you are aiding the erasure that keeps them outside mainstream media (something that would help perceive them as acceptable to society), keeps their problems from being spoken about, and allows society to quietly sweep them (and what happens to them) under the rug.

Thirdly, it's none of your business. I am frankly quite tired that every time the LGBT[...] community gets discussed in a place predominantly straight like this one, it quickly devolves into the straight people complaining about the ways the LGBT+ community annoys them, or is doing things wrong, or is otherwise deficient. And I'm pretty sure those same people go right back to saying places like these are super tolerant of minorities and there's no need for things like Gaymer Con or anything of the sort.

Exactly.

I'd also add that people can't just say "I support the rights of people", because that's a pointless generalisation. Nobody much says "human rights are stupid, lets get away with them", but plenty of people oppose rights for various groups, or quietly ignore that they exist. If you don't say "I support X", there's no reason to assume you include them under "people".

Angie7F:
Soon we will be fighting over which group gets to be named first in the acronym.
I think it is just fine to assume that LGBT includes "everyone not hetero".
It doesnt mean I do not think they should be represented, but too much details is sometimes unnecessary.

Nah, same problem. You need separate letters for "B" and "G", for example, you can't just say "the gay community" and sort of assume that includes bisexuals, because lots of people in the gay community hate bisexuals, or think they don't actually exist.

The reason such things need to exist is to protect them against a hostile/apathetic wider society. If people as a whole don't support them by default, why should anyone assume that people support them unless they specify that they do?

thaluikhain:
If you don't say "I support X", there's no reason to assume you include them under "people".

Bullshit.

I don't have to come out and say "I support... [every fucking niche label in the world]" just so they can feel warm and fuzzy and know that I'm on their side (for a start, if they were truly happy in their own skin they wouldn't need my fucking approval anyway).

So no, there is EVERY reason to assume that I include Gays, Bisexuals, Lesbians, Transgenders, Intergenders, Hermaphrodites, Pansexuals, Queers, Asexuals, [insert your goddamned sexuality label here] When I say 'I support the Gay community'.

Indeed, and stepping out of this particular area of discussion for a minute - Every person on the planet I come into contact with will know if I don't approve of them for something if they've made me privvy to it. I'm a Yorkshireman, if we see something we don't like we tend to vocalise it. Loudly, and often.

Say I find out that I know someone in the BNP? They'll leave the pub knowing exactly what I think about them, their political party, and everyone who supports it. Say I find out I know someone who opposes Gay Marriage (and I do, several people), then they too shall get both barrels of my rather large gob.

Say I find out I know someone who's a Pansexual Polygamist with a popper addiction and a large black Hermaphrodite Boy/Girlfriend called Stacey-Jim? They'll get judged on their merits as a conversationalist and treated as such - that is to say, I'm not going to sit there and blow smoke up their arse telling them how much I'm okay with or actively support their way of life, because if they need that to feel validated then some things wrong anyway. Instead I'll judge them the same way I judge every other human being, and if I don't like them, and they don't like me, it'll be nothing to do with sexuality and everything to do with personal chemistry.

Once again, I feel like I'm not wording what I'm trying to say very well... Basically, No: People should not need to seek active approval from others to know they're being accepted. Being accepted is something that happens automatically, without anything needing to be said... At least, with me that's the case.

azukar:
I think 6th and Silver makes a good point. Adding more and more letters to the initialism just makes it unwieldy. Nobody in the LG community, or the LGBT commmunity, or the GLBTIQSDFBDDR community, is likely to be excluding others. That would be terrible hypocrisy.

You'd be surprised. While on the whole, the community tends to be more inclusionary and accepting than the general population, there's still plenty of infighting and certain degree of bigotry on the part of some individuals/factions.

Bi erasure/biphobia is a thing, for instance. Negative stereotypes such as infidelity, promiscuity, and insincerity still exist, and some members of the gay community see bisexuals as either straight people experimenting or gay people who are unwilling to come "fully" out of the closet.

There's also a certain level of hostility toward trans* people within some circles and/or (more commonly) a reluctance to advocate trans* issues with the same fervor as gay issues (not just transsexual people, but any non-gender-conforming individuals.) The Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) is a good example of this. It's a bill that's reintroduced in pretty much every Congress, and a huge source of contention is whether it should cover sexual orientation/preference and gender identity/expression, or just the former. This came to a head a few years back when a "both" version of ENDA died in committee (as they are wont to do), but then a "just orientation" version was reintroduced and passed the House. Some in the LGBT supported it, seeing it as incremental progress that could be built upon ("gotta take what we can get"), while others saw it as a betrayal of ideals and the worst sort of "compromise" (it would only protect those least likely to need protection.) In the end, it became political dynamite even on the liberal side of the aisle and ended up dying in the Senate. Since then, five more ENDA versions have been introduced, all covered both, and all have died in committee.

But yeah there's a lot more. Some radical queer elements oppose pride parades for being coopted by corporate interests and mainstream culture, while some conservative gay elements oppose them for too large a focus on "deviant" sexuality. When Bash Back! decided to confront neo-Nazi protesters at a pride march (carrying a banner that read "These Faggots Kill Fascists"), the pride organizers publicly denounced Bash Back!, who replied, "Neo-Nazis are not a group of passive Christians who want only to condemn our abstract souls to hell. These people want us dead. If given the chance, they will kill us. [...] The "leaders" of this community have shown they will never stand with those they claim to serve. They would rather see well protected neo-nazis than a well-defended queer and trans community. Nobody will protect us if not ourselves." Any time practices/lifestyles like BDSM, barebacking, polyamory, etc crop up, there's always fights between those who want to hide/erase it because they see it as an image problem vs. those who want to embrace and announce it as a political statement. Etc etc etc.

To put on my class warfare hat for a second, it's essentially a conflict between bourgeois elements who are doing relatively well within the existing social structures and want to assimilate vs. poorer and/or more radical elements who are not, see those structures as oppressive, and want to change/defy/destroy them. To be sure, there's a spectrum of opinion. But the problem many of us in the "queer" camp see is that the "homonormative" camp is winning. That is, the folks who only want a nice job and a house in the suburbs with a two-car garage and the right to marry their partner and raise children. If that's what you want, go for it, I say. But the threat is that for them to achieve the level of acceptance they desire, they're increasingly willing to marginalize, exclude, or shun anyone who does not conform to a "model" lifestyle and set of political beliefs that mimics heteronormativity and that the general public finds palatable and non-threatening. (Specifically, embracing a gay culture that values the gender binary, monogamy, procreation, and neoliberal economics, while diminishing bi, trans, queer, intersex, and other individuals as outsiders.)

azukar:
Maybe if people want something to rally around, there needs to be a word that just means something to the effect of "not cis-gender cis-sexuality". Maybe the community should reclaim the word "queer"?

I dunno. But this increasingly long initialism just leaves a bad taste in my mouth.

I'd say "queer" has been reclaimed, but it still carries the connotation of difference. It'll prolly never catch on in general use for the reasons I talked about above: the friction between "we're here, we're queer" and "we just want to be seen as normal."

OT: I generally use LGBT or queer in conversation depending on the context. I think GSM or quiltbag (I really want that acronym to get the SCUBA or LASER treatment) would be preferable to LGBT, but neither really has the popular knowledge yet to really be effective for communication. Queer is a word I place a lot of value in for its political connotations though.

Nadia Castle:
MSGI (Minority Sexual and Gender Identities) which was a problem since no-one knew what the hell we were.

That's a shame I actually like that one. Short, to the point, and covers pretty much everyone without resorting to ridiculously long acronyms.

I also dislike the whole 'lets take the word queer back', I hate that word.

I think there's a bit of a problem with some people being absolutely obsessed with labelling everyone differently and making sure to include every label in their titles. It gets wordy and confusing for everyone else, which I don't think they realise. It's like one guy I knew was in charge of some stall at college for LGBT history month and made a massive banner with about 10 letters, the whole LGBTQP.... etc, and it just looked ridiculous. Keep things short and to the point. I guess that's why I like the mentioned MSGI. It's just simpler.

thaluikhain:
Exactly.

I'd also add that people can't just say "I support the rights of people", because that's a pointless generalisation. Nobody much says "human rights are stupid, lets get away with them", but plenty of people oppose rights for various groups, or quietly ignore that they exist. If you don't say "I support X", there's no reason to assume you include them under "people".

Yeah, apathetic lip service to the idea of equality without actually doing anything about it is the best way to appease one's conscience and society in general without doing any effort.

azukar:
I think 6th and Silver makes a good point. Adding more and more letters to the initialism just makes it unwieldy. Nobody in the LG community, or the LGBT commmunity, or the GLBTIQSDFBDDR community, is likely to be excluding others. That would be terrible hypocrisy.

Unfortunately, it's more common than you'd think. It depends on the community/organisation, and the ones I hang out with are defined as groups for anyone who feels like they don't fit to the 'norm' of sexual identity. (And that don't care about labels)

But there is for example conflict between transsexuals and homosexuals, for example, because the problems they face are so different, and the kind of support the other group needs can be offending or harmful to the other.

Then there are lesbians who don't like bisexuals, because they are viewed as not looking for serious relationship. (And on the other hand I've heard many stories where couples have tried to approach lesbians to get threesomes, even though the lesbian has made it clear she is looking for a relationship.)

I always figured that LGBTQ did the job. I know that we're supposed to be inclusive, but once your movement's title has more letters than one of a medical journal, people begin to start losing interest.

Darken12:
Wow, I go to bed and wake up to a bunch of people pissing on the LGBT[...] community. How out of the ordinary.

I get the rationale behind the "why do they need so many labels? can't they just be normal? isn't that what they want in the first place?" thinking, to which I reply "Ha ha, no."

Labels are necessary. Not mandatory, but necessary. If you don't want to embrace a label, that's absolutely fine, but identity requires identification. In order for a person to construe their sexual and gender identity, they need to be able to identify it and communicate it accurately to others. Labels help you do exactly that (though again, they aren't mandatory. If you can convey your sexual and gender identity without them, feel free).

Secondly, the ridiculous idea that you should be "just human" or something nonsensical like that is that it conveniently ignores societal context. LGBT+ people are still getting killed or suffering violence and prejudice even in first world countries. They are still denied legal rights and widely discriminated against. By denying them the ability to identify themselves, you are aiding the erasure that keeps them outside mainstream media (something that would help perceive them as acceptable to society), keeps their problems from being spoken about, and allows society to quietly sweep them (and what happens to them) under the rug.

Thirdly, it's none of your business. I am frankly quite tired that every time the LGBT[...] community gets discussed in a place predominantly straight like this one, it quickly devolves into the straight people complaining about the ways the LGBT+ community annoys them, or is doing things wrong, or is otherwise deficient. And I'm pretty sure those same people go right back to saying places like these are super tolerant of minorities and there's no need for things like Gaymer Con or anything of the sort.

Pretty much.

I am gay, but I personally don't care about identifying as such since I'd rather not be known for my personal life. However, I'm not opposed to it and I understand why people do it since being gay pretty much guarantees some politicking even in the most enlightened parts of the world; how else are we going to get representation if we don't have a word to ourselves? Although I don't agree with it all the time, Pride Parades, coming out stories, Gaymer Cons and other campaigns have a concrete purpose; to declare that we exist, we're just like you, and we're not going away. If you have some issue with that and you're not part of a minority group, that's saying something. As much as I love being a gamer (there are those pesky labels again) this community can get very antagonistic over things that have little to nothing to do with the gaming culture at large.

This is really getting quite absurd. Next we'll need to list every possible ethnicity, gender identity, sexual identity, age bracket (in 2 month intervals), geographic location (by area code), religion (including the various denominations) AND tax brackets in one big long jumbly mess. To be socially "aware" you'll need to type as though you designed the Matrix code.

Look, the group is the sexual minority. Let's keep it simple like that: sexual minorities. Be like the Christians and use that as the term to describe the billion denominations as one.

Holy shit on a shit sandwich, do they really need that many letters? While I personally think the whole "MUH IDENTITIES" thing is dumb in the first place it may be because it's this absurd. Maybe if they had a better way of explaining it people like me wouldn't be so quick to dismiss it as dumb.

Even after reading some of these posts explaining it it still seems stupid...

lord canti:
Forgive me for my ignorance, but what is intersect?

Someone is described as "intersex" if they are not easily defineable as either gender. They may have a genetic abnormality (e.g. Klinefelter syndrome), a birth defect (e.g. ambiguous genitalia), and/or other physical characteristics.

People who are intersex are usually "given" a gender based on which one they most resemble, but may choose to change later in life. In some cases, it isn't obvious that a child is intersex until they reach puberty and don't develop as expected. Depending on the exact cause, it is possible to use surgery to make an intersex person more closely resemble one gender.

EDIT: On second thought, no matter how polite I am, I am sure somebody will try and start an argument, as it always happens in these threads no matter what you say.

So um I have a question. Why do members of the lgbt whatever community seek validation from everyone. Be happy with who you are yes? Oh so you're not straight? That's nice move along. I don't understand why they need to be so overtly acknowledged as a group when the current generation of young adults already doesn't really care one way or another. It seems rather pointless and it's kinda annoying when gay people (which includes everything but hetero for me) actively seek attention or validation. There were two gay guys in my high school class of 100, and one of them was chill about it while the other went out of his way to make it clear that he was gay. Guess which one was annoying? I have a gay uncle and he and his partner are two of the chilliest people I know. They don't flaunt their sexuality, heck I didn't even realize they were gay for several years and I just assumed they enjoyed being with each other. So yea, its my opinion that gay people should just be people, and not "gay" people. Maybe I grew up in a very open minded environment, but I would be willing to bet that when the current generation of 20ish people get to their 40s and in political power, the entire gay rights movement will be completely unimportant. Until then, I seriously doubt that you will change the minds of the people who are already in power.

Side note, what's the point of lgbt anyway? Serious question, I really don't know. I don't mean it to be insulting in any way at all, I'm just having trouble figuring out what they do.

You know so long as people are arguing over the proper acronym for the group, they aren't arguing for the goals of the group. Just saying, priorities people.

This reminds me so much of The Life Of Brian it's not even funny. The whole 'Judian peoples front/peoples front of Judia' People sitting in rooms arguing semantics because they don't know how to solve a problem at it's root. Any label is exclusionary just accept it. You can't encompass everyone without compromising your original label. It's idiotic to have these huge acronyms just so you can be seen to include whatever small group of disenfranchised people are complaining next without helping them feel inclusive in society. Almost be easier to lose the acronyms and have a group dedicated to protect and try to look after anyone feeling lost sexually regardless of orientation or gender. Kinda prove that you are more open minded than greater society and accept that we are all essentially the same......Nah, labels it is.

Relish in Chaos:
So what do you think? Should "I" be added into the "LGBT" acronym, to shine more light on the intersexual minority?

Well -

**reads page 1 of thread**

Yikes. I am tempted to comment on conversation of terms (ie, terms that are very, very similar, but certain people insist on splitting hairs on, which disenfranchises two similar groups from one another), but... not worth it. I've been down that road before and it won't end well.

OT: I've grown rather fond of QUILTBAG. It makes me imagine a large bag full of cloth scraps of all different types. Which is a wonderful image as well as a fairly inclusive acronym.

Stu35:
I don't have to come out and say "I support... [every fucking niche label in the world]" just so they can feel warm and fuzzy and know that I'm on their side (for a start, if they were truly happy in their own skin they wouldn't need my fucking approval anyway).

The above sentence...

[insert your goddamned sexuality label here]

...and the above comment pretty much directly contradict each other.

Basically, No: People should not need to seek active approval from others to know they're being accepted.

I don't think this is about seeking approval at all. It's more about making sure that people recognize that the privileged group in society is not the only norm worth considering. Which means people who don't fit the norm need to be able to identify themselves as they wish to.

Part of being privileged in a society is the ability to forget that you're privileged, the ability to forget that not everyone is like you. And so groups like this need to exist. Now personally, I don't agree with the validity of every label. I think pansexuality as described in this thread is faintly ridiculous for example. But the fact is, it doesn't matter what I think. People (like for example, pansexuals) see themselves as different from me, and they have every right to identify themselves as such.

I believe that they should take the "L" out of LGTBA as it seems to only serve the function of separating gay women from gay men. No distinction is made between bi-sexual men and women NOR between Transexual men and women, so what makes Lesbians so deserving of the distinction? Gay is just short hand for Homosexual, and homosexuality refers to anyone that is attracted to the same sex as themselves. SO i ask you, why bother with the "L"?

NemotheElvenPanda:
Although I don't agree with it all the time, Pride Parades, coming out stories, Gaymer Cons and other campaigns have a concrete purpose; to declare that we exist, we're just like you, and we're not going away. If you have some issue with that and you're not part of a minority group, that's saying something. As much as I love being a gamer (there are those pesky labels again) this community can get very antagonistic over things that have little to nothing to do with the gaming culture at large.

Right on, bro.

NemotheElvenPanda:
Look, the group is the sexual minority. Let's keep it simple like that: sexual minorities. Be like the Christians and use that as the term to describe the billion denominations as one.

Sexual and GENDER minorities. If you're going to sweep everything under a single umbrella, do it properly.

White Lightning:
Holy shit on a shit sandwich, do they really need that many letters? While I personally think the whole "MUH IDENTITIES" thing is dumb in the first place it may be because it's this absurd. Maybe if they had a better way of explaining it people like me wouldn't be so quick to dismiss it as dumb.

Even after reading some of these posts explaining it it still seems stupid...

You already have a gender and a sexual identity. In fact, if you're a straight male, the entertainment industry caters to you almost exclusively. The second demographic (that is still a minority in the entertainment industry) is straight women. If you're one of those two demographics, society is built to cater to you, accept you, represent you and provide your every want and need. If you aren't either, you're shit out of luck.

It's easy for you to dismiss the value of having an identity, and having it acknowledged by society, because it's already the default for you.

the doom cannon:
Side note, what's the point of lgbt anyway? Serious question, I really don't know. I don't mean it to be insulting in any way at all, I'm just having trouble figuring out what they do.

We don't live in a paradise of equality and acceptance, not even in first-world nations. In the US alone, not all states allow for equal rights. And this is without even mentioning countries in Europe or Central/South America.

I was just reading a blog reporting that in Brasil, which is the leading economy in South America, religious fundamentalism has reached such a point that "curing gays" has become a thing with actual support (and several LGBT people have been murdered in the streets for walking hand in hand with a person of the same gender. I saw a picture of a man lying on the pavement with his brains splattered all over the place from having been beaten to death with a fucking rock), Russia has passed a "gay gag" law (that prevents parades and the discussion of homosexuality in public media), Islamic countries make it an actual crime for people to be gay, and even in the Western world, the entertainment media still pretends we don't exist or are exclusively stereotypes/titillation for straight audiences.

Things are not good for us. While hate crimes against every other minority are in descent, LGBT hate crimes are on the rise. The transgender thread in this very forum showed that some people consider it entirely justifiable to inflict violence upon a transgendered woman who doesn't announce her status to everyone she meets (in a world where transgendered people probably suffer the brunt of most LGBT hate crimes) because she's "tricking" the poor straight men (and while gay men and transgendered women get the brunt of the actual violence, lesbians and transgendered men are still subjected to rape and sexual assault as a way to "correct" them).

I am quite glad that you haven't encountered these things yourself, but I assure you they do exist, even in the most civilised parts of the Western world.

EDIT:

Lono Shrugged:
You can't encompass everyone without compromising your original label. It's idiotic to have these huge acronyms just so you can be seen to include whatever small group of disenfranchised people are complaining next without helping them feel inclusive in society. Almost be easier to lose the acronyms and have a group dedicated to protect and try to look after anyone feeling lost sexually regardless of orientation or gender. Kinda prove that you are more open minded than greater society and accept that we are all essentially the same......Nah, labels it is.

You do know that there are already groups of people that call themselves one thing regardless of their personal differences, right? They're called countries. And they do very, very shitty jobs at providing equal rights to sexual and gender minorities or protecting them from discrimination and hate crimes.

A broader, vaguer label (such as "Human" or "American") is just a convenient way of erasing things you don't want to deal with and sweeping issues under the table. You can literally do anything and say you're doing for "Americans" or "humans" and spew empty words on how you support everyone and treat everyone equally, while ignoring the problems of marginalised groups.

Identification is the first step towards addressing oppression.

Well, I have often seen LGBTQQIAA used and heard it spoken outloud, so I don't think it is universally not included.
Side note: there are some Intersex and Transsexuals who don't want to be included in the LGBQP+ grouping because despite the root word, neither intersexuality. Nor transsexualism are sexualities, and the sexual minority communities has historically and presently treated gender variant people quite poorly, and the lumping together of those groups tends to reinforce inaccurate stereotypes amo g society in general.

However (and here I'm going to address those people who ask what is the point of LGBT, why don't people call themselves people, why must they label the selves, etc)...these labels aren't just about self-identification, they are also about social discrimination. And bigots often see Trans women as just another form of gay man and Trans men as another form of lesbian. Homophobes panic that loving an Intersex person makes them gay. So a lot of the discrimination that people of the MSGI community face are rooted in similar sex/gender anxieties.

So, to those people who say, why can't you just identify as a person? I do identify as a person. But, my identification as a regular person doesn't mean that I will stop being racially profiled, doesn't mean that I all of a sudden get the same legal rights as my cis sexual heterosexual fellow people.

Is a system where there is discrimination, getting rid of the labels that describe the people being discriminated against doesn't get rid of the discrimination, it just makes it impossible to name the discrimination for what it is and then combat it.

People go on and on about how they hate labels, then they have to have some commitee acknowledge each label for every % of confusion there is in your sexuality.

Are you a female, would never sleep with a women, but you can admire some female bodies? You're interqueercurios.
Are you a shemale, but feel like a girl, but kind of a lesbian, but totally gay? You're transmogrifiomnipanalphasexual.
Why must there be more names for sexuality than metal music genres?

the doom cannon:
So um I have a question. Why do members of the lgbt whatever community seek validation from everyone. Be happy with who you are yes? Oh so you're not straight? That's nice move along. I don't understand why they need to be so overtly acknowledged as a group when the current generation of young adults already doesn't really care one way or another. It seems rather pointless and it's kinda annoying when gay people (which includes everything but hetero for me) actively seek attention or validation. There were two gay guys in my high school class of 100, and one of them was chill about it while the other went out of his way to make it clear that he was gay. Guess which one was annoying? I have a gay uncle and he and his partner are two of the chilliest people I know. They don't flaunt their sexuality, heck I didn't even realize they were gay for several years and I just assumed they enjoyed being with each other. So yea, its my opinion that gay people should just be people, and not "gay" people. Maybe I grew up in a very open minded environment, but I would be willing to bet that when the current generation of 20ish people get to their 40s and in political power, the entire gay rights movement will be completely unimportant. Until then, I seriously doubt that you will change the minds of the people who are already in power.

Side note, what's the point of lgbt anyway? Serious question, I really don't know. I don't mean it to be insulting in any way at all, I'm just having trouble figuring out what they do.

OK, I'm going to try to take a deep breath and be patient with this response. Wish me luck.

The first thing that you need to understand is that you may be massively underestimating the amount of hate and prejudice that LGBT still face today. There are places in the world where being gay carries the death sentence, and even in moderately progressive places like the US still have huge restrictions placed upon the rights of LGBT people. A very large portion of the US population still believes that LGBT people shouldn't be allowed to marry, or have children, or be left alone with other people's children, or even exist. There are relatively few places in the US where a gay couple can walk down the street hand-in-hand without fear of verbal abuse or even physical assault. Coming out as gay or bisexual whilst in high school - or even simply being suspected of homosexuality - frequently leads to bullying and - in extreme cases - teen suicide.

Just look at the prevalence of "correction camps" for both teens and adults in the United States. Many people still don't believe that being homosexual or bisexual or transexual is a valid way of life. Many people think you shouldn't be allowed to identify as any of these things, because really you're just a confused or rebellious heterosexual. Many people choose to stay in the closet because they are afraid to identify as LGBT, fearing rejection by their friends, family and co-workers.

Identifying as LGBT is a brave thing to do. Why do LGBT need to be "overtly acknowledged"? Because a lot of people don't acknowledge them as having the same rights as "normal people".

As for your distaste for gay people who are "flaunt their sexuality" and "make sure everyone knows that they're gay" ... ugh.

OK, patience, patience.

I'd be interested to know what you mean by that. Do you mean that they flaunt their sexuality in the same way that heterosexuals do, by talking about people that they're into or celebrities that they think are hot? Do you mean that they act in too much of a "stereotypical" gay fashion? Or do you mean that they talk openly about the fact that they are gay?

None of these are valid reasons to criticise people. This sounds an awful lot like the old "You can be gay, but don't shove it in my face" school of 'tolerance'. If you really consider yourself to be open-minded then maybe you should consider the possibility that gay people should be allowed to be as gay as they like, and they shouldn't have to moderate their gayness for fear of offending the sensibilities of straight people.

Basically, what you're (no doubt unintentionally) doing is trying to strip people of their identity. Would you ever say to black people, "Why should you have your soul music and ebonics? You don't need black culture. You should have the same culture as the rest of us."

Imagine if you spent a large part of your life fighting to retain a part of your identity that you never got to choose in the first place, and faced ridicule for doing so, and just when you felt ready to be proud of that part of identity and speak openly about it someone came up and said, "God, you don't have to go on about it, no one even cares."

the entire gay rights movement will be completely unimportant

That's some incredibly poorly judged phrasing. Imagine if someone tried referring to the Civil Rights Movement as "completely unimportant". I'm just going to pray that you mean "no longer needed".

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