Sunday, December 16, 2012

Another Word: It Gets Better with SFF but SFF has to Get Better too - Lev A. C. Rosen

"On the whole, the SFF community seems to me to be divided into three camps. First, the openly homophobic types, who for personal an/or religious reasons—or because they think it’s “evolutionarily backwards” (just like the other 200-plus species who practice homosexuality, right?)—feel queer people don’t deserve to be treated like actual human beings. In the second camp we have the pro-queer types who love queer characters in their fiction and often are queer themselves. The third camp, though, makes up the majority of the SFF community: folks who just don’t think about it. These are usually straight dudes who grew up pretty geeky, and who often are still mostly—and hopefully comfortably—geeky. But they just don’t give much thought to queer folks. If they did, they’d probably be cool with them; many probably consider themselves pro-gay rights. But when it comes to their SFF, this third group finds it odd when there’s a gay character. Some say things like “I just can’t relate to a queer character, cause I’m straight,” but most seem surprised by the inclusion of queer characters. Some say they find the emphasis on sexuality to be heavy-handed—even when the emphasis on the queer character’s sexuality is equal to or less than the emphasis placed on the straight character’s sexuality. When a straight guy kisses a girl, it’s the norm; when a gay guy kisses a guy, it’s emphasizing their sexuality." 4 out of 5