Why I stepped down from the barricades

…the title of this blog post isn’t entirely accurate, but that’s only cause “Why I Decided Not To Step Up On The Barricades Again After My Manically Jealous Boyfriend Forced Me To Cut All Contact With All My Gay Friends And Acquaintances, Thus Making Partaking In LGBT Advocacy Impossible” would be too long, no?

Once we broke up, I had some thoughts about taking up some kind of LGBT Advocacy again, but decided against it for a number of reasons – the main one being that I seem to have many of the character traits the vast majority of the LGBT Community dislike – I’m a Conservative (voting for the Swedish party that most closely resembles the Tories), a Christian, and vehemently Anti-Queer.

When I first started getting involved in LGBT youth organisations, they were all about two things – arranging social activities for LGBT youth and working towards equality on a “we’re just as you, we only fall in love with people of the same sex”-basis (which is the exact approach I use for my own sexuality). During my two consecutive periods as National Treasurer, of the two largest LGBT Youth Orgs in Sweden however, this changed!

As an example – when I was elected a treasurer in 2003, this organisation was known as the Swedish Federation for LGBT Youth Organisations, whereas now it’s the Swedish Youth Federation for LGBTQ Rights. It’s not the somewhat superficial question about naming that bothers me, though – during my period as an advocate, I found that ALL Swedish LGBT organisations started turning more and more left wing.

Don’t know if it’s my “rural” (yeah right…) upbringing, but for those of you who, like me, hasn’t been brought up in a major city, the ridiculous idea of using gender neutral pronouns (the PC mafia in Sweden has suggested that one should use “hen” (a strange mix of hon – she and him – he) as a pronoun rather than the accepted ones) or the teaching of queer theory at universities is absolutely alien.

When brought up in a less-than-accepting environment, it’s the safe haven of a meeting place where you can be who you are without hiding that’s important, not hair-splitting and theoretical discussions.
“But”, I hear you say, “can’t the organisations do both?”. To this objection, I’m afraid I’ll have to answer, with big letters “NO”. It was rather obvious to me, that once we started the more political advocacy, the people organising the social events etc started to disappear and the organisations started attracting a completely different crowd.

Could it be that we’ve now gotten to the stage where all the “important” milestones have been achieved (same-sex marriage, adoption rights for same-sex couples etc) and many of the real fighters have started getting old, the left-wing queer theorists have a free reign, scaring away those with another world-view? Perhaps.

Speaking about politics, this article, calling gay conservatives self-hating is a perfect example of the abuse gay conservatives has to put up with within a movement that’s supposed to promote tolerance. An oxymoron if I ever saw one. I’ve never had any problems whatsoever being gay within my party (the Moderates), however, being “non-left-wing” has caused me some trouble within the LGBT movement.

Being brought up within the Church of Sweden, I’m very much aware that I could have been much worse off when it comes to being openly gay in church, and it has never caused me any problem whatsoever (Perhaps not that surprising, living in the diocese with the first openly lesbian bishop of the Porvoo Communion….) The same thing, however, can’t be said about the verbal abuse I’ve gotten from fellow gays for being Christian….

To avoid being attacked – of course I’ve met plenty of both conservative and Christian LGBT people as well as left-wing LGBT advocates who have no problem at all with me being both conservative and Christian, in fact – they probably outnumber the fundamentalist lefties, but there are enough of those fundamentally against two of my core identities to put me off any more LGBT advocacy for the foreseeable future.

Thus endeth my rant.


About Petter

Demi-Norwegian Swede in Oxford. Rather churchy type.
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