Monday, November 17, 2008

You're Going To Run Out Of Letters

Sick of my blathering about Proposition 8 yet? Good God, me too. But since you might be watching or reading the news about the protests that went on this past weekend, I just wanted to clarify some terminology that you might hear or read (hopefully on a non-hateful sign. You know, a sign that doesn't make the person holding it look like a moron. Or a moran. Whichever.).



It's likely that you'll run across the term LGBT. See, the gay community wants to be all inclusive. Sometimes too inclusive, but more on that later. LGBT, as you may or may not be able to deduce, stands for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender/Transsexual. I have no idea why they are in that order other than possibly 'Ladies First'. Also, they might have chosen an order that specifically avoided have the 'BLT' together because then people wouldn't think 'gay' when they saw it, they're think 'Mmmm....bacon." And quite frankly, associating bacon with those who are gay is really quite misleading. The point is that there's really no catchy acronym you can make (with just those letters). But recently I was made aware that a "Q" had been incorporated at some point in time and the acronym was now reading something like "LGBTQ". It was all news to me. (What isn't?)

Like most waking moments of my day, I was clueless as to when, where and why the "Q" had come about (or would it be when the "Q" had come out?). Initially, I thought it might stand for 'Queer', but that seemed a bit redundant. I mean, you already have the L and the G leading the way on that one, if it was supposed to stand for 'Queer', I would find that excessive. But it doesn't stand for 'Queer'. It stands for something else, which I find both excessive and unnecessary.



The 'Q', apparently, stands for 'Questioning'. Now, it has been brought to my attention on more than one occasion through a few rounds of jestful name calling, that I am 'questioning', but not in the sense of sexuality, just in the sense of everything. Actually, I was dubbed 'Question-y Question-son'. Yes, I do believe that was the moniker. But again, I just question stuff. Most stuff, actually, because stuff is confusing. But I don't question me. I am well aware that I'm an enigma wrapped in a conundrum. Or something like that. Whatever it is, there's no questioning required of me in regard to me. But for everything else? I tend to ask what the hell is going on. And that's what I'm doing here, but I don't need a special letter to do so. And really, no one else does either. I'm just sayin'.



But apparently, others do question themselves, though not in the way that I question others. No, they're not sitting around saying to themselves, "Self, what were you thinking?" These folks, the 'Q' folks, they're questioning their sexuality (apparently). So the LGBT initial people decided that these folks who aren't quite sure what they are can be in "the club" AND have a letter. Personally, I think they should have gone with 'M' for 'Maybe'.Then again, I don't really think that someone who may not be a full-fledged, card carrying member should be initialized on the monogram. But I didn't get the memo that they were doing this, so apparently I missed my chance to bitch (which is highly unlike me.). I mean, couldn't there just be like a "Visitor's Day" or something like that? You know, take a tour, meet some folks, have a few cookies, stuff like that. It sounds quite friendly, I don't see the problem.


The thing is, when you start changing things to be all inclusive, sometimes you lose your head and get carried away. As I did a little research on this topic, I learned that there are many, many more initials that can be attached to the LGBT. (Translation: Someone lost their head and got carried away. Headless homosexuals, running amok. It's not a pretty sight, I'll tell you what.) It's like the letters are Legos or Velcro or something and if you get them next to any other letter....BAM! They just stick like glue.

You can also add (though I'd rather you didn't) :

  • A "U" for "Unsure" (As in "I am unsure about this list." And isn't "Unsure" just another way of saying "Questioning"? I think it is. Who was in charge of this acronym? Roget? Was he gay?)

  • An "I" for "Intersex" (Sounds too much like "Interstate" for me. Though a map would have come in handy more than once. But I'm worried it might confuse folks. (I guess that would be where the "Q" and the "U" could come in, right?)

  • Another "T" for "Transvestite" (Why not just go with IJASTFTT? You know, "I'm Just A Sweet Transvestite From Transsexual, Transylvania" from The Rocky Horror Picture Show? Why stop with just the ONE "T"? If you're going to be silly about this, please, go all the way!)

  • Another "T" or a "TS" for Two-Spirit. You can also start throwing numbers into this alphabet soup and go with a "2" to denote the "Two-Spirit" as well. (A Two-Spirit would seem to be a gay Native American. Stay tuned for the letters that will stand for gay Eskimos, gay midgets and gay tightrope walkers. )



  • An "SA" for "Allies" (This is a straight person who supports gay rights. Think Kathy Griffin, Cher, or anyone you know who is straight and supports gay rights, but may or may not have their own reality show. That encompasses an awful lot of people. Not enough, but a lot. This is becoming a very all-inclusive group for something that is supposedly made up of a relatively small segment of society. I think it's going to start losing any significance if we keep adding letters. You'll just end up with an "S" for "Society" and call it a day. )

  • An "A" for "Asexual" (A sexual what?)

  • A "P" for "Pansexual" (If you're attracted skillets and other kitchenwares? Attracted to Peter Pan?)

  • A "P" for "Polyamorous" (Distant cousin of "Polywannacracker".) Actually, this is the motivation behind "polygamy". One who is "polyamorous" and desires more than one intimate and connected relationship and then does so with the consent of all who are involved. WHY on Earth anyone would want more than one full-blown relationship at any given time is beyond me! I have a hard enough time juggling ONE. If I had to do more than one I'd hang myself! It sounds just horrible.

  • An "O" for "Omnisexual" (This would seem to be a fancy word for "bisexual", which is already covered in the acronym as demonstrated by the letter "B" in "LGBT". See, it's right there! No need for another.)

I'm sure there probably would have been more attached to this ridiculously long monogram, but there are only 26 letters in the alphabet and I think they were running low at this point.


Are you freaking kidding me?!?! Whose idea was this?! At this point, THIS is what you end up with:


LGBTQUITTSAAPPO


Yeah, that's nice. Very simple. Easy to remember, too, right? NO! NO, IT ISN'T!! It's ridiculous!

Since when do you include people in something that might not even really be in there? Like the "U" or the "Q?" Unsure? Questioning? They're the same!! And can't some of those others just fall into the 'Bisexual' category? The "O", one of the "P"s, they could both be designated by the "B", couldn't they? (If you aren't real fond of the "B", it could be changed to an "H" for "Heteroflexible". I wouldn't mind.) And the "A"? Asexual is NO attraction to either gender. Why are they thrown in there?! That's like if you had a group that liked to eat only green vegetables (I'll call them the OGVs for the purpose of this ridiculous example) and then you decided that you'd include those who don't eat any vegetables! You're telling me you're going to change your name and become the OGVONs? (Only Green Vegetables Or Not.) I don't think you are!

What if other groups did this? Like the AARP? What if they felt the need to include the different kinds of retired people? The ones with Alzheimer's? The ones with a motor home? The ones who knit? The ones who play shuffleboard? The ones who sew things all the live long day! Are they going to change their name to the AARAMHKSSP? Well, at least with that they could have a catchy acronym like "A HAM SPARKS." And even though I don't really want to start associating the elderly with salted meats which are aflame, I will admit that a catchy acronym goes a long way.

So I mentioned to a friend of mine my horror at the overly lengthy and all-inclusive acronym that was once LGBT. And I cannot tell you how glad I am that I did. Because the response that I received was nothing less than brilliant. Simply brilliant. She suggested a complete overhaul of the acronym itself. Her replacement? ABS.

Anything But Straight.

All inclusive. Easy to remember. Short! No duplications. No sneaky synonyms. And it's accurate. Problem solved! ABS it is!


Gay. It doesn't have to be complicated!

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3 comments:

Alice Amplified said...

Eh Hem...

No, you were dubbed Questiony Questerson. The R is important because it makes the title roll off your tongue.

I cannot beleive the Q stands for QUESTIONING!!! That's insane. Kinda cute tho. I enjoy a good acronym and the Q is a underused letter for sure.

Notice I'm not even commenting on the virtual Warped Tour now going on in your family room. I'm speechless. Indeed, my dear, your day has come.

Mare said...

Questerson. Am I on a quest? A quest for answers? Truth? The American way? Just the damn "Q"?

It's all so very cumbersome. Questiony Questerson, that is. Couldn't I just be Ask-y McWants-To-Know?

See? Questions are good! Now you know all about the "Q"! And if you could tell me how to make it go away, that would be fab-ulous.

I've rendered you speechless?! Wow! (That didn't take as long as I thought it would, though it was HARDER than I'd imagined.) There's a spot on the Tour for a roadie, by the way, and you don't even have to work your way up from 'schlepper'.

Now if you'll excuse me, I must finish unleashing my inner rock star. (She's really coming along nicely.)

Mare said...

Hey, wait a minute!!

WARPED?!?!