Posts tagged Asexuality
Posts tagged Asexuality
Let me start out by saying, in no uncertain terms, that I think this issue is extremely important, and I hope to do it justice. There is a great deal of animosity, anger, and frustration and I would like to do my part, if I can, to set this discussion off on the right foot. My suggestions might be somewhat controversial, but I’m going to do my best to be fair to the arguments presented on every side of this issue as I perceive them. I absolutely welcome commentary, questions, queries for clarification, and being called out if something I say is simply blatantly incorrect. The rest of the post is under the “Read More” because it’s very long.Now, this is a solution I can be comfortable with. How about it, folks? Can we agree on this one?
Err, not quite sure I agree with this entirely as I still think it excludes people and divides the ace community up too much. I respect it as a compromise though. Where does this leave homo/pan/biromantics though out of interest? Surely we’re still queer? (You’ve probably covered this in your post but I didn’t quite get it. Sorry. :S)
I wanted to respond to this specifically, because I happened to notice it.
I actually didn’t really cover in much detail homo/pan/biromantics except at the beginning where I briefly addressed that I wasn’t going to ask “but what about homo/pan/biromantic aces?” because I have yet to see anybody in any community trying to stop aces from using the term. In short, it leaves them exactly where they’ve always been, unambiguously able to use the term “Queer” without being appropriative.
As for it dividing up the ace community, I was specifically hoping that this way of thinking about things actually avoided that, by recognizing all aces, regardless of romantic attractions as “not-Straight” (unless they specifically identify that way) and as being deserving of access to safe spaces designed for Gender/Sexual Minorities. Could you be more specific about how you see this as being divisive?
I thought your post on the issue of aces as queer was great: although I don’t personally agree with everything in it, it’s absolutely the kind of calm and nuanced discussion we need to be having on the subject.
There was one thing about the post I wanted to comment on, though, since you asked, Re: this bit, “I believe that the historical targets of a hurtful slur have every right to be the gatekeepers of its reclamation and therefore which groups can self-identify using the term, and that this is not policing.”
Throughout this whole mess, there’ve been many non-ace queer people - i.e. people who are the historical targets of that slur - who’ve spoken up saying that as far as they’re concerned, asexuality is queer and individual asexuals should be considered queer if they wish to be. You’re completely right that the group who are the targets of that slur are the only people who can define it, but I think it’s important to point out that plenty of them want aces to be included in that term, invite aces to use that term, and that their opinions are just as important and valid as the opinions of those who disagree.
Response to Submission:
While I hadn’t fully considered that, I still think we should err on the side of deference to those who would prefer that the label not be used in a certain way than those who would like to see its meaning expanded, and here’s why:
If we can decouple “queerness” from access to safe spaces (a big if, but let’s assume for a moment that we can and thus asexuals are not harmed by not having access to that particular label), then what we have remaining are two groups with a stake in the debate: those against whom the slur was originally targeted who want to see its meaning expanded, and those against whom the slur was originally targeted who don’t.
The first group (the people who would not mind the term being used by more groups) are not harmed if the term is not adopted by other groups. The second group, however, a group who feels strongly that the term is only okay when used by specific people in a specific context, are harmed when people use that term outside of that context.
I think, on principle, we should aim to defer to those people who would be hurt by expanding the use of a slur to encompass people against whom it has never been used as opposed to those who are merely not bothered by it.
In this case, as long as asexual people aren’t denied access to safe spaces based on their lack of claim to the term “Queer” (and I think I covered how and why we could accomplish that in enough depth in the original post) we should defer to the people who are against its use rather than those who are for it.
Or, to come at it from another angle:
If it’s in principle wrong for a group to reclaim a slur that has historically not been used to target that group (which I think it is), should it even matter whether some people who are part of the group the slur originally targets are okay with you using it? What is more important is that some, or maybe even many, are not, and what is being done might be wrong in principle in the first place.
This is mostly off the top of my head, so my argument might be sloppy in places, but I think it makes some sense.
Let me start out by saying, in no uncertain terms, that I think this issue is extremely important, and I hope to do it justice. There is a great deal of animosity, anger, and frustration and I would like to do my part, if I can, to set this discussion off on the right foot. My suggestions might be somewhat controversial, but I’m going to do my best to be fair to the arguments presented on every side of this issue as I perceive them. I absolutely welcome commentary, questions, queries for clarification, and being called out if something I say is simply blatantly incorrect. The rest of the post is under the “Read More” because it’s very long.
Thinking about changing my URL because I had no idea it overlapped with this other blog, but this is a great article and you should read it. It debunks the notion that privilege checklists should consist only of items that are not on any other privilege checklist.
Complete with Princess Bride quotes!
(Also, logic and good sense.)
This is absolutely excellent, and says a few things I’ve already said here and then some. Excellent work.
First, I’m still working on that big long article with the frameworks for defining and categorizing sexuality and it could be a decently long while until I finish it. Surprise! It’s difficult, time-consuming, and exhausting work and I’m trying to do it in as inclusive and detailed fashion as possible. I’ll try to fill this with other, shorter articles on important topics in the meantime. This will be the first of those articles.
Next, I’m just going to end all of the suspense and answer the question in the title right away, and the short answer is: “Only if that’s how they identify”
Trigger Warning: Some Discussion of Asexual Erasure
This would be an excellent idea, but I’m not totally sure how such a survey would be best implemented. It would be most useful as at least a semi-scientific survey, but in my experience people have a very hard time explaining what they experience when describing attraction because sexual attraction is just so normal to most people that society never really bothered to make words to describe the sensation. Perhaps another blog meant to collect “Attraction Stories” and sift through the results would be well equipped to a task like this, but I’m not sure how such a project would get started.
This post includes a discussion of a post on the “Privilege Denying Asexuals” blog, so if you want to stay out of it, or if you may be upset by erasure of demisexuality, don’t read any more. For people who aren’t going to read more (and even for people who are):
HAVE A TARDIS CAKE
For the rest of you…
I just want to start by saying that I love the asexual community and have hated seeing what it’s been going through recently. By way of introduction, this is a new blog on gender and sexuality with a focus on issues relevant to those under the asexual umbrella. You can call me Mel, I discovered with the help of the Ace community that I was asexual about 6-7 years ago, and I’ve decided it’s time to try to give back.
I’m writing a much longer post about attraction and the asexual identity, which should cover a lot more issues, but I thought I’d get this definition of Sexual Attraction that I’m working on circulating to get some opinions.
Attraction connected with immediately perceivable information such as looks, body language, scent, demeanor, or personality, which is tightly coupled with sexualized thoughts, feelings, or images
Some discussion of the definition follows the “Read More” link.