The Global Attacks on Black Queer Lives Are Not A Joke

It’s the patriarchy. Patriarchy is killing us. It is literally killing us. It has made the slippery slope a treacherous death drop to our downfall.  If you have been busy or you have been otherwise preoccupied with world issues, the Internet was set up blaze with the exposure of an alleged lawsuit accusing entertainer and mogul Diddy/Brother Love of sexual violence against men and underage minors. 

Yet, the alleged sex crimes, grooming, and abuse did not take center stage. Instead, it was the “shocking” allegations that Diddy was potentially involved in sexual relations with other men. Most importantly, people were outraged to find that Diddy was allegedly involved in numerous, consensual sexual relations with other male entertainers while lacking comparable outrage over the allegations that he allegedly engaged in the facilitation or support of human trafficking of minor individuals. 

At the same time this news dropped, so did news from Ghana of the country passing legislation to criminalize not only identifying as LGBTQIA+ but also advocating or promoting LGBTQIA lifestyles, existence, and cultures. The passage of the Ghana bill came on the heels of the announcement that the Kids Online Safety Act (KOSA) bill was gathering bipartisan support despite the fact its main backers had argued that its passage would change how LGBTQIA materials could be accessed via the Internet and would automatically default queer content to being categorized as sexually mature content solely based on the presence of LGBTQIA+  individuals or subject matter. 

The passage of these bills is connected to an organization with far-right ideologies that supersede even traditional roles of male and female arguments. These organizations espouse beliefs about how males are rightly supposed to act and that can only come to fruition if their access to sex and sexuality is limited. In some instances there is even a belief that recreational sex should be banned or criminalized because the only function of sex is to result in reproduction and any sex act outside of procreation should be condemned.  

These archaic and white supremacist beliefs have seeped and permeated through all aspects of popular culture. Religious fanaticism coupled with political movements that are backed by a billionaire class has resulted in internalized and publicized homophobia and transphobia that is literally killing our communities. This is patriarchy simplified. It is the inability of our society to accept sexual and bodily autonomy of consenting adults that has led to an increased elimination of our civil rights and liberties. 

This results in people being more outraged that a man would have sexual intercourse with another man than they are with the idea that a man would engage in sexually inappropriate, illegal activity with minor teen girls. The responses to the alleged lawsuit reflect how far we must work as a society to understand that people’s sexual identification and exploration are not content to exploit or demonize when they consist of consensual adult contact. 

But because we have not been conditioned to see bodies as individual beings capable of and deserving of pleasure, we have become susceptible to criminalizing and demonizing those who understand, accept, and practice their sexuality.  As such, we are seeing an explosion of legislation across the globe to take away the rights of queer people, women, and those who express bodily autonomy. We are living in a world where women who are pregnant are unable to divorce their husbands who are abusing them, where folks are threatened with arrest for holding hands with their same-sex partners, where individuals in Arizona are able to bankroll bills in Ghana and Uganda, and where the Internet will crack at someone allegedly being gay and instead of condemning them for being a predator. We live in a world where nonbinary and trans students can be attacked in bathrooms and risk being murdered for being themselves. 

As we are faced with the reality of dwindling rights and loss of liberty, we must begin to unlearn the ways in which we have been conditioned to view sex and the body as dirty. We must begin to divest from patriarchy and white supremacy. We must begin to once again think about creating a sexual revolution that is based in freedom and lasting knowledge of a body politic based on informed consent, openness, and education.  Until then, we must continue a global struggle to ensure that queer people have equal rights wherever they may be and bloom wherever they land. 

Miracle Jones is a community organizer and queer activist who works in the Pittsburgh area to advocate for equity along the intersections of gender, race, and class.Her work focuses on implementing abolition based principles and transformative justice through writing, policy, and advocacy.  Headshot by Emmai Alaquiva.