My inbox was flooded yesterday with links to BET's new website geared towards the black LGBT community.
The special feature section, promoted on the main page of the web site, includes a section on "who's who" in the Black LGBT community, a list of common myths and misconceptions, information on HIV, a history quiz, a list of black gay pride events, and information on Terrance Dean's new memoir Hiding in Hip-Hop.(The Daily Voice)
My initial reaction was shock and disbelief, but the good kind. Finally, somebody at BET realized that black gays and lesbians are apart of the community and should be represented in their content. But as I perused the site, keeping true to form, the BET that we've come to know in the past that fueled the down low phenomenon and gave Terry McMillan a platform to lash out at Jonathan Plummer and gay men everywhere returned to its exploitive roots.
There is also a section for black women that lists signs to look for if you suspect your man is gay. "Ladies if your man spends more time in the bathroom than you do, then he might be gay." If he has an obsession with Whitney, Mariah, Diana, Celine or Cher, then you could have a diva on your hands." If he's always quoting Oprah or talking about something amazing she did, then he might be gay". And my favorite, "One of the most definitive signs that your boyfriend is gay is that there are some male strangers in his MySpace list of friends or contacts."
Wow. Black women everywhere should be so grateful, Thanks BET! (*Darian rolls his eyes, a clear sign that I might be gay*)
Overlooking that misstep the site does attempt to debunk myths about the gay community and I'm particularly proud to see influential black gays and lesbians profiled who contribute greatly to society.
I want to be able to give BET credit for diversity, but I'm holding out on complimenting their efforts because well...it's BET.