I am Latino… and gay
“Due to one’s personal beliefs and values, or those or one’s cultural group or religion, a person may experience same-sex attraction as a crisis.” -Manuel Montoya
As humans, we are in the middle of an individual world driven by our sense of identity. There seems to be a set of beliefs, qualifies, and many other things that makes us different from others. Heritage is something that shapes identity. As we grow up we absorb stuff from our cultural heritage whether it’s positive or not.
In the Latino culture, patriarchy predominates in most of the families, institutions, and government. In other words, males have the authority and more privileges than females. Homophobia, which is discrimination and hatred towards gay people, is one of the strongest weapons in the patriarchy. We are raised to believe that the perfect man is the one who is heterosexual, dominating, emotionless, and without the slightest hint of femininity. Men without these features are considered to be inferior.
And you know what? Bad news, everyone! There are some of us that happened to be gay. Being both gay and Latino doesn’t make sense in that perspective, makes us hate ourselves, and therefore we can have deep identity conflicts.
That’s the thing about homophobia, not only it makes us violent but also makes us believe that if we are gay, we are less human.
Fuck the patriarchy! Fuck the homophobia! What’s important is to absorb all the values and positive stuff from our culture. Therefore, we can create a unique identity that encompasses both our Latino heritage and our sexuality.
Happy International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia!