Young people in the pagan and polytheist communities don’t care about queer spirituality. I don’t say “anymore”, cos aside from myself, I don’t know if they ever did, and even when I was fifteen, I don’t really count myself as “young people”, cos my parents were both about forty when I was born (and having kids at that age is one of the most selfish things a person can do, if you ask me, but that’s another story for another time), which really distorted my sense of what “acting my age” should entail. Queer spirituality is, unfortunately, the realm of people who are breaching middle age (about thirty-five or so) and older. I’m not the only person recently to note this, recently PSVL made a considerable note of this in the Queer I Stand article, “It’s Hard to ‘Think of the Children'”, which is mainly about the reluctance of pagan parents to raise their own children as part of their own religion cos of an inability to tell the difference between a healthy religious upbringing and the abusive indoctrination one was reared with. It’s unfortunate that, even though young people are clearly interested in pagan and polytheist religions even (perhaps especially) queer youth, they aren’t interested in the rites of people like them.
Part of me wants to chalk this up to the lie of “just like everyone else” that’s sort of lousy all over the TS/TG community, and which clearly ruined GBL culture and sold it out to corporate America.
And this is where I make the distinction between “GBLT culture” and “queer culture”. The word “queer” will likely always carry etymological connotations of being “oblique”, “odd”, “strange” and “eccentric”. The male title character from Will & Grace may have been gay, but he wasn’t in any way queer. Most of the contestants on RuPaul’s Drag Race are only just barely queer. While “queerness” is now clearly intricately entwined with sexuality and gender, it’s not a synonym for GBLT, and I will firmly hold this. Being Queer isn’t about being “just like everybody else, except for sexuality or gender history”, to be queer is to be against being “just like everybody else”, if only cos that’s not what works for you. Marx’s artisans and Paul Fussel’s X-class are where the queers reside –sure, we contribute to society, but we exist outside the expectations of grow up, settle down, get boring, have some kids…. Sure, some queers have kids —waste an afternoon watching reruns of Wife Swap and you’ll be sure you’ve seen GBLT-parented families just like some of the freak-flag-waving oddballs who’ve found their fifteen minutes in front of those cameras, just as sure as you’ve seen hets raising those families.
Which reminds me of one of the stupidest things I’ve seen on Tumblr recently: Some kid made this list of “X doesn’t mean Y” and one of them was “Straight doesn’t mean normal”. Actually, yeah, yeah it does, kiddo. Go watch the discussion with father and child over the word “bent” in the film Ma Vie en Rose and then tell me “straight” does not mean “normal”. Hell, go actually read up on the etymology of that term as a synonym for “heterosexual” and tell me it hasn’t always implied “normal, status quo”. Hell, some of the most painfully straightest people I’ve known have been GBLTs; they were so straight it kinda pained me to be around them. Log Cabin Republicans are straight. The characters on The L Word are straightened out for your titilation.
But as far as I’m concerned, if a GBLT person is a monotheist, they cannot possibly be Queer. I’ll accept Queer atheists )but probably not Atheists, as this “New Atheism” requires an inherently Christian mindset) or aspiritual people, but no, the monotheistic mindset is inherently incompatible with Queerness.