Sunday, August 7, 2011

Lesbians Have Voices. And Sex.

Stephanie Schroeder asks, "When Will Gay Men Shut Up and Listen?" The explanation:

Writer Stephanie Schroeder says it's time to end the myth that lesbian relationships begin with a U-Haul truck and end in sexlessness.

I don't think it is gay men that perpetuate that myth. I think people of various genders and orientations have kept that myth alive. But then I don't pay as much attention to gay media as the writer.

By the tenor and content of many gay media reports today, it appears as if the conversation in the queer community about sex is only by and about gay men like Dan Savage, and (somehow) by extension, how perhaps straight couples are learning new models of partnership from gay men’s relationships.

In reality, queer women are indeed talking about the same things gay men are talking about vis-à-vis sex and relationships. And it’s more likely that lesbian-feminist thought and action is as much (or more) of a template for “alternative” sexual habits among heterosexuals than gay male sex/relationship rituals ever were.

Uh-oh. Play nice!

When Sapphic-leaning sisters are sitting around talking, rest assured we are often discussing sex and relationships, and likely even lusting after the gal sitting next to us. Lesbians and bisexual women at, for example, the annual Scholar and Feminist Conference at the Barnard Center for Research on Women, or even the annual Michigan Womyn’s Music Festival, are continually thinking about, theorizing, and telling the truth about queer female relationships, both in the home and between the sheets. And we are pursuing those relationships—whether casual, committed, or anywhere in between.

Duly noted.

Susie Bright a pioneering sexpert in the queer women’s community, is still writing about sex and monogamy and the falsehoods of relationships for the Huffington Post—and she does so by including sexuality issues relevant to lesbian, bisexual, and transgender individuals, something gay columnists like Savage rarely do.

There’s also lesbian Felice Newman and queer sexpert Tristan Taormino (whose Village Voice column ran for a decade), and bisexual Betty Dodson (who has been peddling her feminist sex education for women for six decades). There are dozens of books published between these three women alone.

And, after “having sex with 3,452 men, 371 women, and 83 1/2 trans people,” Annie Sprinkle came out as eco-sexual, a bent that’s interesting to say the least. Her eco-sexual wedding to another woman, Elizabeth Stephens, and their post-queer “sexecology” philosophy (exploring the places where sexology and ecology overlap) is ripe for broader cultural interpolation and interpretation about women and sexuality.

She has plenty of say. She's tired of marginalization. I definitely support diverse lesbian voices getting a platform. I don't think any prominent gay men need be silenced to do this. The more the merrier, and hopefully, the more freedom to marry, as well!
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