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Old 10-18-2019, 02:49 PM
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Default Friday Thought: The Q Word

I attended a training with my foster agency last night, as I do every month. The topic was on LGBTQ+ youth, and our speaker was a member of the community who heads up outreach and training for a local rec center specifically for members of the community ages 12 to 24.

She said that they have begun rebranding many of their materials from LGBTQ+ to using just the word "queer" as an umbrella term because of its all-encompassing nature and accepted usage, especially among that age group.

Some of the members in attendance at this training, and most notably an older gay couple, said the word is still offensive to them and they won't use it, nor identify themselves that way.

The speaker got into a history of the word, the reclamation of it, and how its use can be offensive or not depending on the audience, and how of course if you're using it as a derogatory, you're using it wrong. If a person identifies as queer, it's fine to call them queer, and if you're a member of the community, it's fine to reclaim the word for yourself, but otherwise tread lightly.

As someone who isn't in the community, I don't feel that I can use that word to describe the community as a whole, and certainly wouldn't ever use it to describe a person who doesn't self-identify specifically that way (e.g. queer, genderqueer, possibly others?).

Is this word still taboo? As a non-member of the community, would it be acceptable to describe the LGBTQ+ community that way on the AO (in a non-hateful way), or is it still a word that can only be used by the community? I want to be accepting and embracing, and using the preferred language of a community is very important, but this feels like it could easily go too far with the wrong audience.
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Old 10-18-2019, 02:52 PM
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I don't remember hearing the word "queer" used as a slur in a long, long time. It definitely was when I was a kid in the mid 80's, but I don't remember hearing it at all after high school. If you're 12-24 now, maybe you've never heard that word used as a slur. But if you're my age, I can see how you might be reluctant to just embrace it.
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Old 10-18-2019, 02:53 PM
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FWIW, I'd just as soon as have people tell me what they prefer than trying to guess at it.
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Old 10-18-2019, 02:55 PM
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Originally Posted by Adam View Post
I don't remember hearing the word "queer" used as a slur in a long, long time. It definitely was when I was a kid in the mid 80's, but I don't remember hearing it at all after high school. If you're 12-24 now, maybe you've never heard that word used as a slur. But if you're my age, I can see how you might be reluctant to just embrace it.
I know I heard it as a slur in high school in the early 2000's, and I've been told even until recently that it's not okay to use unless you're reclaiming it. And as a cishet, I always felt I had no business using it since I wouldn't be reclaiming it.
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Old 10-18-2019, 02:57 PM
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And I guess I'm more curious to hear if this word would be acceptable to use on the AO or if we haven't evolved to that point yet.
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Old 10-18-2019, 03:02 PM
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A cop knelt and kissed the feet of a priest,
And a queer threw up at the sight of that
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Old 10-18-2019, 03:04 PM
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Originally Posted by NerdAlert View Post
I attended a training with my foster agency last night, as I do every month. The topic was on LGBTQ+ youth, and our speaker was a member of the community who heads up outreach and training for a local rec center specifically for members of the community ages 12 to 24.

She said that they have begun rebranding many of their materials from LGBTQ+ to using just the word "queer" as an umbrella term because of its all-encompassing nature and accepted usage, especially among that age group.

Some of the members in attendance at this training, and most notably an older gay couple, said the word is still offensive to them and they won't use it, nor identify themselves that way.

The speaker got into a history of the word, the reclamation of it, and how its use can be offensive or not depending on the audience, and how of course if you're using it as a derogatory, you're using it wrong. If a person identifies as queer, it's fine to call them queer, and if you're a member of the community, it's fine to reclaim the word for yourself, but otherwise tread lightly.

As someone who isn't in the community, I don't feel that I can use that word to describe the community as a whole, and certainly wouldn't ever use it to describe a person who doesn't self-identify specifically that way (e.g. queer, genderqueer, possibly others?).

Is this word still taboo? As a non-member of the community, would it be acceptable to describe the LGBTQ+ community that way on the AO (in a non-hateful way), or is it still a word that can only be used by the community? I want to be accepting and embracing, and using the preferred language of a community is very important, but this feels like it could easily go too far with the wrong audience.
Ask for the voting results on the use of "queer" instead of nearly the whole alphabet.

Here's the thing: someone is bound to be offended.

So, ruining my search history looking for an answer to "What is 'Queer'?" and still confused as to what it is supposed to mean these days, if it is to mean something different from the other letters.
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Old 10-18-2019, 03:12 PM
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So, ruining my search history looking for an answer to "What is 'Queer'?" and still confused as to what it is supposed to mean these days, if it is to mean something different from the other letters.
I'm not going to try to straightsplain it, so I'll leave that task to a member of the community if they'd like to get into it. Also, it very likely means different things to different people.
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Old 10-18-2019, 03:15 PM
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'I have an odd feeling about these Ents:
somehow I don't think they are quite as
safe and, well, funny as they seem. They
seem slow, queer, and patient, almost sad.'
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Old 10-18-2019, 03:20 PM
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'I have an odd feeling about these Ents:
somehow I don't think they are quite as
safe and, well, funny as they seem. They
seem slow, queer, and patient, almost sad.'
I thought you were dead.
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