During my time living in New York City, I have heard about racism happening over and over again, which you think wouldn't be as prominent here. The exact opposite should be occurring in such a multicultural city, right? Everyone should be "team equality" at this point, but that seems to be the furthest thing from the truth.
Several friends of mine have told me consistently that men will block them on apps if they are a certain skin color, or men do not feel comfortable talking to them in public. One even said the following to me: "A guy told me I'm his type, but wouldn't know how to introduce the situation to his friends as they think I'm only into white guys." Wow.
For all the men out there who say that racism is a thing of the past in our community, I strongly urge you to take those rose-colored glasses you have off your head and wake up to what is going on in our world right now.
Racism has no problem presenting itself at gay bars and events all around the country and even world. A popular event that occurs each summer that I've attended has about 88 percent white dudes, 7 percent Latinos, 3 percent African-Americans, 1 percent Asians and 1 percent every other type of race. The white dudes barely interact with the other races unless they are hot or have a "preference" for them (see that debate here), and the men who don't identify as Caucasian who show up to these events either feel unwanted or unsure of how to infiltrate a simple social situation as they fear they'll be rejected because of their skin color.
Racism is something that is beyond noticeable in every facet of our lives. It's occurring when queens on RuPaul's Drag Race are being called the N-word on social media by people who of course have a fake avatar and no real information about themselves. It's also happening when black men in gay porn are sick of their privates being only referred to as "BBC" as well as when white porn stars using absurdly racist lingo with no worriment on repercussion (NSFW link as proof). And of course, its happening when there is generally one black or Asian dude cast on a horrible Bachelor ripoff (you know what show I'm talking about here).
Is there a solution? The sad thing is, I'm not sure when the racism switch will be turned off and when people will get down to the nitty gritty of why this is still an issue. It's almost to the point where you don't know what to do, as much of this is happening online and that is an animal that will never slow down no matter how much you try to stop it. In real life, you can't exactly do a whole "kumbaya" thing and bring everyone together for the sake of doing so, but does that mean that men of color in this community are ultimately screwed because of who they are?
What can we do? I think a lot of the gay men who are on the right and narrow and accept everyone for who they are should speak up when situations like these occur. Some know what they are doing and don't care, while others are blissfully unaware of how ignorant they are and need a wakeup call from someone they call a friend.
Regardless, no one should be made to feel lesser than because of what demographic they were born into. We as a gay community want to be accepted for something we were born with, so why can't that ring true for all races who coexist in our very own rainbow family?
This article was created by one of Instinct Magazine's writers and doesn't reflect the publication as a whole.