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playahata1 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-23-04 09:45 PM
Original message
The Black Community and Homosexuality
I am aware that a lot of the negative feelings towards homosexuality within the African American community has a lot to do with Christian (and, in some quarters, Islamic) teachings -- depending on how those teachings are interpreted. However, I cannot help but think that it also has LOTS to do with how "manhood" and "masculinity" are defined within the black community.

My feeling is that there are elements within the black community who are not sure what being a man is all about. It all comes from black men having been told since slavery that they are less than men. Because they are trying to prove themselves to be fully men, many black men strive to avoid anything that is construed to be less than "manly" -- to the point where they equate being gay to being less than a man. Your thoughts?

Peace. From a concerned Sista.
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fortyfeetunder Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-23-04 10:03 PM
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1. Biblical interpretation
And I think among some of the black Christian population interpret Bibllical verse literally in selected sections -- that is: homosexuality = sin. (I doubt they would feel the same way about slavery being endorsed in tbe Bible)
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Solomon Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-23-04 10:09 PM
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2. I just explained this very thing in this
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kiahzero Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-23-04 10:10 PM
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3. It's a problem with our socialization of young men
Black men, much like Latino men, are often socialized with the notion that they need to be "strong" to be men... there's a documentary about it, called "Tough Guise."

This "Tough Guise" is part of why there is such a strong rejection of homosexuality among most men.
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kiahzero Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-23-04 10:10 PM
Response to Original message
4. Dupe
Edited on Tue Mar-23-04 10:11 PM by kiahzero
Sorry
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Terran Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-23-04 10:15 PM
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5. an observation
or maybe a theory, based only on my personal experience:

Given a similar socio-ecomonic background and education level, I think that African-American men are actually less likely to be homophobic than their white counterparts. My partner is African-American, and many of our social relationships are with other African-Americans, both straight and GLBT. And even among the straight men who affect an exaggerated butch/manly quality, I am (a white gay man), at a minimum accepted politely. Generally speaking, I'd be more afraid of being revealed as Gay in front of a pack of white rednecks than I would in front of a bunch of ghetto thugs.

But I do think your idea about the history of debased masculinity among Black males is true. Just not so sure about the effect you attribute to it. There are other effects, I'm sure.

Dirk
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Alenne Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-23-04 10:50 PM
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6. The same reasons other groups have a problem with it.
I feel we are talking about this as if every other group is fine with homosexuality and the black community is the only group still having problems accepting gays and lesbians.

Why do most white people have a problem with it? Religion and/or a distorted view of manhood.

Why do most Hispanics have a problem with it? Religion and/or a distorted view of manhood.
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