This past week I began to see the world, the white gay community, and the black gay community for what it really is and to be honest with you I'm mad as hell !
On January 24th the news that many of us had been waiting for was finally announced, LOGO'S hit show Noah's Arc was not being renewed but a film was being planned instead to be released in 2008. This wil not be another post venting about the cancellation of the show, there has been enough of that on several other sites. Like many other people I am a fan of the show and I'm saddened by LOGO'S decision to pull the only representation of my community from their network.
Truth be told, Noah's Arc will never be seen at your local multiplex, it'll be lucky to go straight to DVD. No matter how you felt about the creative aspect of the show, for the first time there were Black gay men of color on television in lead roles for the entire world to see. It will probably be years before we ever see this happen again.
But the more I thought about the whole ordeal the more I realized that we as a community have a much bigger problem than the cancellation of the show. Not only did LOGO axe the show, they told us that our lives and our stories didn't matter in the process and it didn't deserve to air in the same line-up as old reruns of Queer As Folk and we just accepted it.
So what happens now? Let me guess...Black gays and lesbians revert back to their invisible status and can only be found on television when a script calls for a flamboyant hairstylist or a Terry McMillan type who has been deceived by her husband on the down low. Ding...Ding...Ding...Ding...Ding! Right answer.
Not in a million years would this have ever happened to Queer As Folk or Will & Grace. The white gay community supported those shows and would've raised hell if they're privileged white gay lives were not apart of mainstream America. Visibility creates an opporunity to educate and to gain tolerance and acceptance. Why haven't we as a community learned this yet?
Oh I know why, as long as Keith Boykin is out and proud he'll speak for all of us, right? I can't count the number of times I've heard this, as if one person can speak for the multitude.
We're ignored, trampled on, emotionally and physically abused because we don't allow people to know who we are. We've bought into the bullshit lie that our DNA is a tragic mistake and what we do should be kept in the dark. That's why we're not represented on television in a positive light, becuase we've been too ashamed to object to the stereotypical images Hollywood has fed us for so many years, sadly because many of us share the same opinion of ourselves.
We have to learn to support each other, we are the ones we've been waiting for.We have to stop the ridiculous discrimination within our own community, there will always be queens, trade, thug brothers and DL wannabes and every one of these people have a story to tell. The white gay community is going to take care of their own and make sure that they have a place at the table, how are we ever going to make it to the table to affect change if we can't come out of the damn closet?
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. once said," Our lives end the day we become silent about things that matter". Right now in this country our Black gay lives don't matter and we have allowed our family, the church, the media and a large segment of society to tell our stories for us becuase we're too afraid to tell them ourselves.
The closet is full and we're suffocating inside. Today we lost Noah's Arc, tomorrow it could be our lives.