No money for queer people of color

As "pride season" is upon us once again, the media starts to take its annual look at the state of the LGBT community. In what might come as "shocking" news to some of you, there is racism in the gay community.

From The Advocate:

In its "report card" on race released this month, the philanthropic research organization Funders for Lesbian and Gay Issues reveals that only 8.8% of all funding for LGBT causes in 2006 went to groups targeting people of color like FIERCE -- even though blacks, Latinos, biracial people, and other minorities make up at least one quarter of the U.S. population, according to the 2006 Census. Out of 19 prominent foundations reviewed -- whether LGBT-specific ones like the David Geffen Foundation or ones with broader missions such as the David Bohnett Foundation, which finances social activism in general -- only nine awarded grants for race-related issues in 2006. Of the 10 who didn't award a single grant to people-of-color groups that year, four hadn't awarded any grants at all to these groups in the preceding five years.

Why, you ask...

Well, one reason is that most of these LGBT-supportive foundations are lead by upper-middle class white men who are simply clueless about the struggles of people of color. Just like some hetereosexual white people, many gay white people have no real interaction with their black, Latino, Asian and even lower income counterparts to really understand their issues. Of course, they only seem to "know" these struggles when the gay marriage issue comes up, but I digress.

Secondly, with the increase of "mainstreaming gayness," there is a desire by some gays to make their lives look exactly identical to hetereosexuals simply for acceptance. Didn't you know that "equality" with heterosexuals is the new gay? This is why gay pride parades around the United States next month will be bombarded with corporate sponsors and straight celebrity parade marshals. There are some in the gay community who would want you to believe that if America were an episode of "Will and Grace," homophobia would no longer exist. And don't think for a minute that this isn't the agenda behind talk show host Ellen Degeneres' upcoming nupitals to her girlfriend Portia de Rossi.

Inspite of this charge to create the new face of gays, queer people of color simply just don't seem to be included in this agenda.



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