June is PRIDE month, and Fused Creative’s next show is featuring local LGBTQIA artists. We know there are many of us, including several members of our team, who are QUEER AND GLAD TO BE HERE.
Being yourself is a radical act. Embracing queerness in the age of the alt-right and TERFs requires just as much courage as it ever did. Although a specific flavor of queerness has become more socially acceptable, it is still not a safe world.
According to the Williams Institute, almost half of the homeless youth served by agencies identify as LGBT. Trans people face constant micro-aggressions, as well as active threats to their well-being and safety. In 2018, the Human Rights Campaign declared fatal anti-transgender violence a national epidemic. Even in our own city - a nationally recognized “progressive” space - there are reports of Proud Boys (a far-right neo-fascist organization) attacking queer presenting people on the streets of Portland. Femmephobia runs rampant and bisexual and asexual erasures are still a norm, and all of these forms of bigotry and violence are significantly multiplied for queer folx of color.
Although all of this is a daily reality, queer folk are still asserting their right to be themselves--to love who they love, to fuck who they want, to present themselves as who they truly are. Embracing who they are and choosing to live full, complicated, joyous lives is a radical political act. “Happy” doesn’t mean washing away or hiding the hardships queer folx have faced. Instead, this show is about celebrating the tenacity, radical glee, and transformative vitality that comes from queer love, community, and power.