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Rant conclusion.

A few people have been asking me when my part three will be coming out. (See Rant 1 here, and Rant 2 here.) To be honest, after writing the first two, my anger and frustration was voiced. Soon after that I went to IMsL and I experienced everything that can be and is good in this community. I felt and experienced and was awash in everything that I consider worth fighting for... worth ranting about. IMsL was the ultimate package that demonstrated all that is good in our scene that call SM/Leather/Fetish.

But I got inspired to say something tonight.

I was watching Bloodsisters tonight. A constant theme in this landmark documentary is how the Leather Dyke scene had to fight so hard to get to where they were that day. That constant activism was and is needed in order to allow us our freedom to seek out our pleasures in life. Pat Califia spoke very candidly about his history in the scene, how much he had to fight, and how he became a champion for social change.

And then he expressed an interesting point. He talked about young dykes who were coming out and could step directly into their leather lives without the fights and struggles within the self and with greater society as in years past. And then Pat said it... it took him back, but then he was able to feel pride because his struggles for social change had succeeded - that he enabled future generations to live their lives to their fullest and with their own definitions.

The ability to define ourselves. To define our lives. To define our lifestyles, and our desires, and our very inner beings.

This is what frustrates me the most about the constant old vs. new debates. Why I feel so hurt by my elders when they try to kick me down.

Because they don't realize that in some very magical, important ways, they won.

I'm 32. I didn't have to fight the sex wars. I wasn't alive during the great Summer of Love. I was 3 during the 1st March on Washington in 1979. I was 11 for the second in 1987, the first to have a major SM/Leather presence. I was in high school during the 3rd in 1993, still not knowing the leather community even existed.

But my elders, and the elders who I struggle against at times, they were there. They marched, they fought, they spoke, they rallied.

And they did it for me. And you. So that we could be included. So that we could be recognized. So we coud live our lives peacefully with our own definitions.

So whenever someone goes their own way, does their own thing, creates their own style and traditions and way of life - we celebrate your victories. We are the result of your efforts. We are the living expressions of everything you fought for.

Maybe we don't say thank you enough. That might be true. So allow me to say it here - thank you. Because of your amazing efforts, I am allowed to live my life.

Comments

( 18 comments — Leave a comment )
(Deleted comment)
boymeat
Apr. 2nd, 2009 03:10 am (UTC)
What radio show do you host?
archers_elegant
Apr. 2nd, 2009 02:54 am (UTC)
Spot on...the best thing I have read all week.
(Deleted comment)
raucuspc
Apr. 2nd, 2009 03:04 am (UTC)
Very well put old boy, I add my thanks too.
boymeat
Apr. 2nd, 2009 03:10 am (UTC)
Why thank you, chap. This post was after all in part for you. :-)
raucuspc
Apr. 2nd, 2009 03:44 am (UTC)
You're a gentleman, a scholar and a judge of good kinksters :-)
nineinchlovely
Apr. 2nd, 2009 03:26 am (UTC)
I loved this post. I couldn't agree more.
boy_cru
Apr. 2nd, 2009 03:44 am (UTC)
you're one of the good ones my friend.
bootpig
Apr. 2nd, 2009 03:58 am (UTC)
Good stuff there. We should contemplate our navels together. :-)
goddesscoko
Apr. 2nd, 2009 04:04 am (UTC)
Nicely put. Its good to hear positivity. And I too add a big thank you!
whipartist
Apr. 2nd, 2009 05:27 am (UTC)
I've had similar realizations over the last few years.

The first came when I was watching the movie Kinsey. I left the theater thinking, "I owe so much of my life to that man. I had no idea."

The second came during the filming of the movie Milk, when I was walking up and down Market street carrying a candle. There were a surprising number of older gay men around me, especially given what has happened since then, several of whom had been friends and acquaintances of Harvey's. They fought the fight so that I could live my life openly.

The fight isn't over, though. I've been on the front lines myself, fighting things in Oregon that made the Briggs initiative look like a park bond measure. You haven't really lived until someone tries to amend your state constitution to declare you abnormal and perverse.
cleovale
Apr. 2nd, 2009 06:06 am (UTC)
excellent post..really wonderful.

also, isnt Tova in Bloodsisters? I wonder what ever happened to her.. she just.. disappeared after 2001.
iamtrogdor
Apr. 2nd, 2009 11:08 am (UTC)
Great commentary on your state of thought.

Also, I'm glad you're not writing any rants when the emotion behind it isn't at hand :)
sirkenandsubg
Apr. 2nd, 2009 01:28 pm (UTC)
I commented on the second Rant.

Great conclusion.

-gee
pony_bootblack
Apr. 2nd, 2009 01:35 pm (UTC)
thank you for this. the words here really touched me. thank you.
ncnefarious
Apr. 2nd, 2009 03:13 pm (UTC)
I didn't find this path until I was older than you are now. I, too, give thanks to those elders who made it possible for us to find our paths our way.

Thanks for posting this. I agree whole-heartedly with the sentiment.
nyfemmegrrl
Apr. 2nd, 2009 04:16 pm (UTC)
That's exactly it. The elders feel unappreciated and the young 'uns feel invisible and squished. Same as it ever was.
klfjoat
Apr. 5th, 2009 11:25 pm (UTC)
Soon after that I went to IMsL and I experienced everything that can be and is good in this community. I felt and experienced and was awash in everything that I consider worth fighting for... worth ranting about. IMsL was the ultimate package that demonstrated all that is good in our scene that call SM/Leather/Fetish.

I'm very glad that you had that experience.

I have a very dear friend who had the opposite experience from you at IMsL recently (not this year). I am loathe to give details, especially in a public forum, but suffice it to say, some very negative things were said to my friend solely because of their sexual orientation.

Based on their experience at IMsL, I realized that we constantly need to fight for openness and acceptance, even in alternative communities.
( 18 comments — Leave a comment )