Dear Gays, Are You Racist?

Dear Self,

“What are you?” is a question I get a lot. Usually people ask me that question because they want to know what my ethnic background is. As you may have guessed by my full name, Orlando Dumond Soria, there’s a crazy collection of ethnicities going on behind these blue eyes, sandy brown hair, and butter-tone skin. My racial breakdown is as follows:

Mexican 50% (via Spain, like generations ago).

French/Polish/Scottish/English 50% (and probably every other European country).

My father identifies strongly with his Mexican heritage, my mom sort of cares about her Whitepeople lineage, and I sort of don’t care about either of them. I know that’s terrible, but when your family has been in California for like 5 generations on both sides and you are always the palest person in a room, you sort of don’t care about identifying with either side of your background. Not that I don’t appreciate Mexican culture or Euro culture, I just don’t really feel a part of it. Like a lot of people, I just identify with where I live (California) first, American second, and as a Raging Homosexual third.

A lot of people are confused when I tell them I am half-Latino. They think anyone with Latin heritage is going to be gorgeous and tan, with the glowing coconut skin of Ricky Martin. Gah, if only! Because of this misperception I’ve coined a new race for myself and other people like me. Whitino (White Latinos). Here are a few totally fun examples of Whitinos:

RobertGant4c-1

 Robert Gant, The Hunky AIDS Boyfriend from Queer As Folk (Born Robert Gonzales)

Welch, Raquel

Raquel Welch, Gorgeous Actress and Lana Del Rey Inspiration (Born Jo Raquel Tejada)

juan-pablo-galavis-bachelorette

Juan Pablo Galavais, ABC’s First-Ever “Minority” Bachelor

848Cameron-Diaz-059

Cameron Diaz, Quintessential California Girl (Born Cameron Diaz)

RobertGant24

And Robert Gant. Again. For, like, no reason.

So yeah, that’s my background. I’m a secret Latino, hiding amongst everyone else without them knowing, doing secret Mexican things while no one is looking (like screaming “¡Olé!” and eating avocados). I’ve been thinking a lot about race since I wrote a blog a while back about New Year’s Resolutions. I got a lot of flack for including images of only White dudes. And I really took it to heart. I consider myself a person who values diversity very much, so how has my worldview become so White? This inspired me to ask the larger question, why does West Hollywood seem so White? How have our social circles become so segregated? Are we at fault? Is it wrong? And is there actually anything we can do about it?

I don’t know if this is my perception, or just one that I am projecting, but it is my understanding that “Mainstream Gay” culture is predominated by White guys, and that women and minorities tend to feel maligned by it. If you look at the leaders of the Gay Rights Movement, from Harvey Milk and Larry Kramer to Lance Black, you tend to see a pattern. So it makes sense that the public perception of Gay Rights and thus our collective identity would skew towards white guys. The reason I bring this up is not to give you a history lesson on the Gay Rights movement (I’d be, like, the world’s worst teacher on that subject). I bring it up because I think if there is a perception of exclusiveness in the Gay community that we should somehow be trying to combat that in the way we live our lives.

I just don’t know how to do that. It’s not like I’m going to walk up to random Black people and ask them to be my friend just so that I can feel better about having Black friends, like I’m doing something to make the world better.  The last time my life was really diverse was in college, where my friend group looked like a Cornell diversity poster. Like one Asian Girl, a Black guy, Wheelchair Girl, Effeminate Gay, Obese Dude, Dwarf Guy, Latino Girl, Ambiguous Pacific Islander Dude, the works. But once I graduated I moved to Chelsea, then to West Hollywood (I know, could I be any more of a 90s Gay stereotype? Gross). And in these communities I found myself surrounded by people just like me, most often white (in my defense I do have a semi-diverse group of friends, not as diverse as I’d like, but diverse all the same).

Because I am a maniac and I obsess about things, I’ve been running all over town asking my friends why our group is so whitewashed. After all, we live in one of the most diverse cities in the US. Here are some of the answers I’ve gotten:

1. We are segregated because of class. Socioeconomic and racial inequity are linked. We only hang out with people in our own socio-economic group, which in turn causes us to segregate racially.

This one I sort of understand, but I went to college and grad school with people of color from very wealthy backgrounds. Sure, they were outnumbered by White people, but it seems a little simplistic to say that all minorities are poor and all rich people are White.

2. We seek friends who are like ourselves, and often find commonalities with people of our own racial background.

This makes sense to me. And is probably the reason my group of friends is so homogenous. And why there are groups of Black Gay Guys that I’ve never met who have fun Black Gay Guy parties like in Noah’s Arc that I’m never invited to. Seems fine to create social circles based on commonalities. Or is it?

3. Because of the history of oppression in our country, minorities band together to find strength and thus tend to stick to themselves.

This also makes sense to me, but when do we heal? When can we move on and, like, hug each other? I guess that’s easy for me to say, because I don’t descend from slaves, have that painful history in my direct ancestry. Which probably means I should shut up.

4. Gay guys hang out with people they subconsciously want to sleep with and most Gay guys are attracted to guys who are racially identical to them.

This is a problematic argument on so many levels, and totally offensive (completely oversimplifying Gay Guys as sex robots). Which is probably why it’s true.

5. Our social spheres are the result of how we were raised. And most of us were raised in communities of people who look like us. 

This makes sense for me, as I was raised in the middle of the woods, around wholesome white Park Rangers, wholesome white resort managers, and one (literally one) Black Park Ranger. Probably one of the reasons I didn’t feel particularly tied to my Mexican roots is that all my friends were White. I was White. So even though my siblings and I had Spanish sounding names, we didn’t particularly feel like we were racially different than our friends.

It has become clear to me that this is an issue people want to discuss. Diversity, inclusion, exclusion, and the Gay community. So I’d be interested in hearing your story. Do you feel included? Do you feel like your group of friends is diverse? Do you care? Whose responsibility is it to make sure people feel included? How do we change the notion that the Gay Rights Movement is for rich White guys? I’d like it if you shared your story with me, as a Gay Person of Color, as a White Gay, as a Straight who struggles with the same lack of diversity in your friend group. Tell me everything. And then tell me how I can make my friend group look like that Cornell diversity poster again…

Love,
Orlando

PS: I realize that I only included pics of Whitinos up until now, so here is a picture of recently-out Raven-Symoné, who just may be my favorite person in the whole world. Mostly because That’s So Raven is both my favorite TV show and my favorite way of saying that something is really cool.

raven.symone

34 Comments

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34 Responses to Dear Gays, Are You Racist?

  1. I agree with most of your points. We are segregated more than we imagine, even in diverse Los Angeles. The next time you go to a nice restaurant, see who is serving you in the front of the house and see who is working in the back.

  2. I like to say that my friendship circle is very diverse and has naturally arrived that way. There hasn’t been a need for us to question it so it hasn’t been a real issue for us. The one very intriguing thing about my group is that we are diverse in our backgrounds but have very similar tastes and common interests and we’re all about the same age. I do, however, segregate my activities. What I do with my straight pals will be a little different with what I do with my gay-homies. And I really can’t see myself having sex with any of them… though however one friendship resulted from first becoming sexual partners. That’s the only exception, so far.

  3. The error in reasoning here is that the ethnic distribution of your social circle is not necessarily demonstrative of your views on racism, diversity, inclusion, etc. Instead, racism is demonstrated by how you treat others.

    It’s also unfortunate that the Gay Rights Movement is associated with rich white men (is that true?). White men in metro areas have it easy, when compared to inner-city blacks and non-whites outside the US and Europe. That will be the ultimate gay rights movement.

  4. Kevin Orlin Johnson

    Well, nature might have a lot to do with it, but so does nurture. People who were raised in the same way tend to congregate, don’t they. Although it’s also true that the average Pride celebration, which used to fill the neighborhood between my house and work in D.C. every year, does tend to look like a reuinion of nine million sets of identical twins.

  5. Very interesting read! My group of friends is pretty much a walking “United Colors of Benneton” ad however I do notice that when I do get invited to outings and parties with groups of people I don’t know (friends of friends), I notice that there is some lack of diversity. I think some of it stems from the fact that, as you said in your blog, people have been “whitewashed.” Kinda like how some gay guys/girls try to live up to societies preconceived notions of what is acceptable and what is frowned upon. Me personally, I grew up on a military base and never really understood the racial segregation amongst friends and societies. It wasn’t until college that I experienced it first hand. For instance, here in San Antonio (in the gay underground), the lighter your skin tone the more attractive you are to people. Like I’ve actually heard people say they are open minded and don’t have a type as long as they’re white or “light-skinned” Hispanic. Then the darker you are the more perfect you have to be in order to obtain the attention and/or friendship of others. VERY superficial. It’s baffling that people think that way but as the walking statistic (the one black guy that these people meet that completely breaks the preconceived “mold”), I’ve chatted with and actually made friends with people who were whitewashed and opened their eyes and mind to the possibilities. I am a man of color but I don’t let that define me some don’t exude that first. I’m proud of my sexuality as well but that too isn’t projected upon people either. I try to let my characteristics outshine the obvious and typically end up attracting like minded people, not race minded people, if that makes sense.

    (P.S. your blogs are uh-MAY-zing)

  6. Reblogged this on QUEER&GAY and commented:
    Well …

  7. gail.

    I think it’s a bit unfair that minorities are allowed to “naturally segregate,” but white people must be racist. I’m a black chick who grew up in Silicon Valley being the only (or one of very, very few) black faces in a classroom (or at rock show), so I’ve never had an abundance of black friends. As I get older, I’m not all that interested in making new friends- I’ve gotten comfortable. Plus, I’m pretty shy/socially awkward around new people.

    I think once we get a solid circle of friends (especially after relocating), we stop trying to make new connections. If it’s really important to you to have a United Colors Benetton situation, maybe try taking up a new hobby or checking out new areas of town, but do it solo to push yourself to talk to new people? Worst case, you’ll have a story.

    BTW, I would totes be your friend! :o)

  8. AE

    I’m from a multiracial home too, and I just keep to myself because I realize that people just don’t like to be around different looking people. So I personally find it preferable to live like a hermit than go out and be in a segregated environment that feels insulting to me. Unfortunately, the more you call attention to it, the more it just leads to awkward, unnatural attempts to make friends with people you normally wouldn’t want to be friends with.

    As George Wallace poetically prophesied, “Segregation now, segregation tomorrow, segregation forever.”

  9. eqi

    This is such a sensitive yet necessary topic. Me, as a 1st generation immigrant who’s Asian, gay, and taller and more built than the Asian stereotypes I’ve seen and been told, my path has been such a bumpy, mind-boggling, and unique experience, though many times it was less than a pleasant ride in Disneyland…

    I’m not gonna bore folks w/ analysis on physical, cultural, historical, and social perspective. After coming out in my early 20s in college, which was quite a painful experience, i.e., adding in the 1st generation Asian gay aspect, 20 some years later, all I can say now is:

    1) We all have our own unique karma – born and experience whatever we’ve set up before we were born by ourselves and w/ the causes we made in our previous lives, i.e., race, culture, sex, sex orientation, drama, suffering, etc.
    2) All stereotypes came from facts, though not 100% true to everyone – or applying to everyone, most have their reasons.
    3) What happens to us ultimately depends on each of us how to react and make out of it.
    4) We cannot change others but only ourselves, so doesn’t matter how others see/treat us, it’s only ourselves in the end that ultimately decide our own fate and destiny.
    5) Live and let live – Be courageous, be true to ourselves & others, be genuine, be compassionate, and be hardworking! And don’t worry about WTF the rest!

    • trailBlaz3r

      While I agree with some of what is said above, I take grave exception to point number 2: that all stereotypes came from facts.

      I am a 3rd generation Singaporean (a highly prosperous, multi-ethnic city-nation in Southeast Asia) of ethnic Chinese ancestry. I did my post-graduate studies in the United States, and the years spent there really opened my eyes to racial issues in both the US and Singapore.

      Stereotypes against Asians in the US have their genesis from how Asians were first portrayed in popular media in the mid-1900s.
      1) Asian men were either routinely emasculated (made to appear weak/useless/less masculine), or cast as insulting villian caricatures (eg. Fu Manchu) and
      2) Asian women were objectified and sexualized (“dragon ladies”).
      These stereotypes were purposefully designed and propagated (mainly in film, comics, and newspapers) in order to stir up American patriotism against Asian enemies of the US (Japan, and later Vietnam and China). This is common knowledge in academic circles, and is analyzed, researched and discussed in academic journals.

      It does not take a superior intellect to see that this has directly translated into many of the negative stereotypes against Asians in the US, stereotypes which have no factual basis at all.

      I am back in Singapore now, and I can honestly say that Asian men are in no way less masculine, more nerdy, or less built than white men in America. There is no fact behind that stereotype. As in the US, gay men here in Singapore/Taiwan/Hong Kong tend to appreciate the muscular/athletic, masculine guys the most, and the gay populations on both sides of the Pacific have similar breakdown physique-wise. What shocked and saddened me in the US was realizing that some other American-Asian guys actually believe the negative stereotypes about themselves. It is very sad, and in some cases turns these misled individuals into self-fulfilling prophecies.

      The stereotype of Asian women as sex objects is even more ridiculous. In fact, the prevailing opinion in most countries on this side of the Pacific is that women from Western cultures are far easier to get into bed compared to Asian women. Personally, I do not believe there is any difference at all in promiscuity among women in Asian versus the US.

  10. Johnny

    It’s funny how in places like Miami, Spain, South America, Mexico City you see hispanics/latinos of all shades and hues (turn on Telemundo or Univision) and no one thinks it’s weird. Here in California — and I guess middle America in general — if you don’t look stereotypically “latino” you are thought of as not really latino or less authentic. Being hispanic is cultural not racial … doesn’t matter if you are white, black, brown, mixed etc …

    • That’s because we don’t classify ourselves in the same narrow terms. In Spain we have the spectrum of white, blonde, blue eyed to olive skinned Mediterranean- but still, we’re all Spanish.
      Racism here is more a question of nationalism with outsiders of any variety being somewhat excluded. According to a study in El Mundo a few years ago 73% of Spaniards would not marry someone from another country.

  11. Kai

    Orlando, is it reasonable to assume that one of the reasons you made this post is because you particularly find black guys attractive and wish you were in social circles were they had more of a presence?

  12. I think associating skin colour and race is a particularly North American obsession. The only place in the world I’ve ever been asked “what are you?” was the US. Then that was followed by “Spanish from Spain or Spanish from Mexico?”. I won’t pretend I didn’t know what that meant. The translation is “Are you white European, or is some brown mixed in there?”

    That being said I’ve always found gays to be very welcoming, everywhere I’ve been, including America. We’re much more preoccupied with someone being cute than worrying about their race. If William Chan or Tyson Beckford walk into a gay bar, the stampede would probably prove we’re not particularly racist.

  13. VVB1302

    Great Post! I have always wondered what to call myself (my GrandFather is Puerto Rican). I think Whitino needs to be added to the race list mainly because the “White” says (non-latino) I am always so confused what to pick. Usually pick white anyway because I am as fair skinned as Emily Henderson 🙂

  14. Jeffrey

    Interesting and sensitive topic, there seems to be a lot of confusion and misunderstanding on so many levels. Firstly semantics, there are only three human races: Caucasoids, Negroids, and Mongoloids. However, there are many ethnicities, nationalities, religions, etc. All these have been the basis of of great cruelty and evil if primarily one predominates. I would encourage everyone to make an attempt to know and love as true friends as many different kinds of people as you can. Fundamentally, all our futures depend on this.

  15. indeed, it seems skin color and race is a particularly american obsession … whithout doubts it s real but don’t imagine that is not the case somewhere else .
    it’s seems that humans are like that and spécialy people who are just white or black or just asian …
    look, i m metisse black and white, my dad is malien and my mum is french and my gran mother spanish , when i am in france or in europe in général, i am considered black , when i go in africa i am considered white ! this is the reason why i know that we all the same and especially the same when it’s about bullshit . to give you an other exemple, it’s similar for the questions of sexual préférences . hetero don’t recognize themselves in homo and so on .
    here again, i chose not to choose i am bisex and everything is possible !
    ps: Otherwise we could think that gay people who undergo the segregation
    are more open-minded than simple white anglo saxon hétero and protestant people, don’t we ?

  16. This always drives me crazy, why are white people racist, but a group of Asian/Black etc friends aren’t?
    I understand wanting to be friends because of commonalities such as things you eat, or languages you speak, or holidays you celebrate. But colour of skin does not matter. Imagine grey dogs hated spotted dogs.

  17. As much as I wanted to disagree with your post..I couldn’t. I was sitting in a Starbucks in a gay neighborhood and it was segregated just like a high school cafeteria. The cloned A&F boys in one corner, the heavier and hairy bear types in other and another group that could be the nerdy science club nervously chattering on the fringe. What is it in us that makes us want to self-segregate?

  18. Davon

    I definitely give you credit for discussing a difficult topic – one that often generates much heat, but little light.
    IMHO, I think you hit the nail with your head when you mentioned class. It’s not race, it’s socio-economic status. In this day and age, it’s not difficult mixing with people of races, but difficult mixing with people of different class. And there simply aren’t that many of us (ethnic minorities) to “go around.” For every Black friend you make, you’re depriving some other White dude of the opportunity! 😉 And you said yourself, where minorities are relatively more plentiful vis-a-vis White people (e.g., the typical university setting), you had more such people in your circle of friends. It’s a supply-side, not a demand-side problem (in your case). (btw, we had intersecting circles of friends at Cornell, I think!)
    So what can you/me/we do? My take is to go through life trying to treat people decently, be fair and be authentic. And by ‘authentic’ for a blogger, I mean: be true to yourself. As a Black gay, as much as I like seeing an accurate mix of people in media and societal institutions, I don’t need to see anything ‘forced’ in someone’s personal blog. So, if you don’t particularly see most Blacks, Asians, etc. as “eye candy,” randomly throwing one onto your page just wouldn’t ring true. If I want to see that, I’ll know to look elsewhere. Put another way, if you like pictures of big muscular dudes, would you add a waifish guy (however cute) up just to add balance? Treat race the same way. It’s your blog, post what interests you.
    Anyway, my two cents.

  19. Dear Orlando,
    Dumond is a cool middle name. It reminds me of Cafe Du Monde where I could eat beignets all day.
    I’m 50% Finnish and grew up wanting to be a Native American.
    I remember that New Years post & the flack in the comment. I don’t think you should take it to heart (because some people are just ornery, jealous & paranoid) but I love that you did and it resulted in his is a fantastic post. I’m impressed with your thought process & writing as ever.
    Thank you for bettering our world with it,
    Amanda in MN

  20. Sean

    I’d like to say I have a pretty diverse group of friends, but then again I am going to UCLA for grad school and have the opportunity to meet people from all walks.

    I picked up on the “exclusivity” part of your post and felt that it resonated with me. Really, until last year I felt like I didn’t quite fit into the queer community at all. I felt like if I wasn’t slim and muscular and wearing this season of (insert trendy gay brand here) that I was somehow off. Contrary to your post, i don’t think race has as much to do with acceptance in the LGBT community as much as status or physical appearance. People are drawn to what they perceive as attractive or what they want to pursue, sometimes including romantic interests and other times just wanting to bond with another person that’s similar to yourself. Growing up in a closet, I think, makes us lonely for others to relate to.

    As far as having a somewhat homogeneous group of friends, I think real friendships grow spontaneously out of mutual shared experiences, close proximity, or common interests. If you’re a workaholic and relate most to the (insert ethnicity here) gays at work, then those will become your close group of friends. If you’re on the gay dodgeball team and relate best with other gay jocks, you’ll have a homogeneous group of gay jock friends. If you’re a grad student your circle will likely be grad students. And so on.

    At the end of the day, I think fitting in is like trying to find your social niche. Trying to fill a quota of colors, I feel, is more racist than just making friends irrespective of color or breeding.

  21. I disagree with the socioeconomic theory, class, etc. simply because, in my experience it has always seemed that the black community (and Hispanic to a lesser extent but notable all the same) has more baggage to sort through regards homosexuality. Internalized shame and trying to fit in to maintain ties to family and friends who judge an expressed sexuality that strays even the slightest from “straight” much more harshly. For example, to me there is NO DIFFERENCE between history’s fight for equality for those those who are black than the fight we in the LGBT community are waging today, yet so many among the black community refuse to see that similarity. Because so many in the black community express a vitriolic response when the comparison is made, is it no wonder that gay men and women within their own community are so hesitant to enter into the limelight and be counted amongst us – [often] choosing instead to blend in and live their lives in secret? I’ve seen similar reactions from the Hispanic community, albeit to a lesser degree. I can only speak for myself as a white gay man but I just finally reached a point where I decided that “my family either accepts me or they don’t, but by God I’m going to live the life that God laid out for me – which is as a gay white male.” I’ve one or two friends who are black, more who are Hispanic and yes, as you’ve observed even more who, like myself, are white. My circle of friends is probably 50-50, gay and straight (and one couple who are poly amorous, an arrangement I do not understand at all but love them all the same).

    (Yeah, I’m a one-guy’s guy. I don’t share well when it comes to my bed. ROFL!)

    Hugs,
    Michael

    • Eric

      You said you believe there is no difference between the black rights movement and that of the gay rights movement. This is deeply false. The black rights movement started as an outcry over the atrocities of slavery, then the atrocities of jim crow, to the modern day, where deep inequalities in housing, education, and wealth exist, along with an American social, political, and economic structure that incarcerates black Americans at far higher rates than whites who commit equal crimes, maligns black Americans, appropriates black culture when it’s convenient. This movement was to dissolve caste based one race, a highly visible trait that cannot be hidden, ignored, or opted out of by those in the “inferior caste”.

      The gay rights movement springs from a much needed break from America’s Patriarchal Christian Hetero-normative roots. The Assumption has been that all romantic relationships should be between a man and a woman, that sexual congress should only take place in the confines of marriage, that marriage should be only between a man and a woman, and all relationship beyond the confines of those criteria were not legitimate before the law. The State had the right to punish gays for engaging in sexual congress. The State had the right to take property and children from gay couples. The State had the right to refuse people in gay relationships to see each other if one in the relationship was in the hospital. The Gay Rights movement developed it’s full strength in the 1970’s. Since the 1970’s the gay rights movement has won protection (in certain parts of the country) in the work place, over civil unions, and, and the right to have families.

      The Gay rights movement’s cause has been to dissolve caste based on sexuality, an aspect that can be hidden or kept secret if one so chooses. Both blackness and gayness are deeply stigmatized, yes.

      But blackness carries with it the history of enslavement, plunder, disenfranchisement, degradation, and alienation. The system that punished blackness with enslavement, plunder, rape, murder, poverty, and and alienation is weakened, but is not gone. And because it is not gone, blackness carries a stigma in all aspects of society.

      Gayness has been punished with plunder, disenfranchisement, degradation, and alienation. But gayness can be hidden, and until only recently have men and women have been able to come out of the closet and prosper professionally and socially.

      The idea of blackness as inferior is about 400 (ish) years old and deeply ingrained in the psyche of the America. And for 400 (ish) years there has been no closet for blackness. Herein lies the difference.

  22. When I was a little wee Filipina in Toronto, it was the most diverse city in the world, but I didn’t even realize that. My babysitters were Polish & Pakistani, & my childhood friends ranged from Italian, Jamaican, Indian, First Nation (which is what Canadians call the “Native Canadians”), British, etc. But I didn’t even know their races as a kid because they were just my babysitters & my friends. In fact, I barely knew my OWN race. I knew I was Filipina but when I moved to Florida & kids asked me if I was Chinese, I didn’t get it at all. I felt like, “Do I LOOK Chinese?!?” In fact, asking someone what they were at all was really weird to me. And when I did tell them I was Filipino, none of them knew what that was, which actually didn’t hurt my feelings that much but they would ask me where that is and I’d be like, “Uhh…..not in Canada or here?”

    My mom is a devout Catholic so I went to private school once we moved to states (Catholic school is actually public in Canada…thanks Quebecois!) & from grade 4 to 8 I went to school with all white kids, with a sprinkling of a (Whitino) Cuban or 2 in our class. I was the only Asian girl in the entire school (which had preschool to grade 8). I even got suspended for slapping a kid in the face for calling me an Eskimo (although in his defense, he meant it jokingly). When I was allowed to go to a much much larger public school in high school, my group of friends was really diverse and it’s been that way since. One of my close friends described me as having a lot of “cross over appeal” because I can hang out with anyone in any group pretty easily.

    As an Asian female, I get asked “what are you?” by strangers constantly (mostly horny guys). Just to be obnoxious, I say Canadian. But it probably is what I most identify with, and isn’t just my annoying way of answering a kind of racist question. My parents met in Canada, my best friends are Canadian or they have family they’re really tight with in Canada, and my parents just retired back there. But when I say I’m Canadian, these strangers are never satisfied.

    I was lucky enough to start off in a really diverse environment & have just always gravitated toward that (not just racially, I have blue collar & bourgeois friends, gay, straight & transgender friends, & I’m have a friend in high school & senior citizen friends) but I’ve noticed that my attitude isn’t the norm & a lot of the times my diverse friends don’t hang out with each other for superficial reasons (I have vain friends & over-intellectual friends too, haha). I also am lucky enough to be an extrovert thats confident enough that when someone doesn’t like me, I don’t really mind too much, so I don’t have a “comfort level” thats higher with a certain type. Hanging out with people like themselves makes people more comfortable & and I feel everyone I meet I can probably find some common ground we both share…I guess I’m just self absorbed enough that everyone kinda reminds me of me! WHEEEEEEEE FRIENDSHIP & DIVERSITY THROUGH HUGE EGO!

  23. And uh, sorry for that long comment. Being verbose probably has added to my diverse social life too.

  24. Why

    I’ve been told directly by people that they don’t want to date me because I’m black. The weird thing is I’m 100% Puerto Rican. I’ve gotten it enough to really fuck with my self-esteem alot. I don’t discriminate though the city I live in just happens to be mostly white. I don’t want to move just to find a boyfriend.

  25. DK

    The issue is the race-obsession of American gays. Let’s not skirt the issue by pinning it on socioeconomics. Socioeconomically, white gays will prize a white or whitetino gay with a poor/rough upbringing over a upper middle class well-bred black or Asian gay guy — let’s be real. Gay porn, gay bars, gay media and entertainment condition American gays to prefer whiteness as the standard of attractiveness. It’s not like this in other countries, and it’s particularly true of dense gay enclaves like West Hollywood and Chelsea where the gay entertainment industry is centered. I can’t speak for other races, but I have learned over the years that white Americans gays in general do not value even attractive black men — as partners or just as friends…and especially not in WeHo. Harsh? Maybe. True? Yes.

    • why

      Exactly, I’m upper middle class. I’m an engineering major and I know I’m attractive (I model). Most of my friends happen to be white. The only stereotype I can say I conform to is loving Puerto Rican food. But because I’m a dark-skinned latino most white guys don’t want anything to do with me. Weirdly it’s just guys. I have no problem with white girls.

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