Sexual racism part II: All the silly questions answered
Following on from last week, in this week’s five-minute think piece I’m providing an FAQ (is it just me or is FAQ actually pronounced like a very rude word?) of the most basic, repetitive, boring racist questions, comments, arguments when it comes to racialised sexual “preference". I come across them time and time again on dating apps and in gay spaces. But trust me, sexual racism is not limited only to the gay community. So here they are all in one place.
It's not racism if it's sex, if it was friendship that would be different …no! Sex is not somehow magically exempt from racism, slave owners who raped their black slaves were still racists.
I'm not racist, I have Black/ Asian friends I just don't fancy them …yeah, that doesn't mean anything, Milo Yiannopoulos and Donald Trump have Black friends too, apparently. Bad news, studies show that people who expose sexual racism are more likely to expose wider racist views - whether consciously or subconsciously.
If you're not into skinny/muscled guys that makes you racist …no, you're mixing up terms - muscles appear in all ethnicities and have nothing to do with ‘race’. Racism is about ‘race’!
If it is racist to only be into Whites then you are sexist for not wanting to sleep with women …no, false equivalencies. ‘Race’ and gender, while both social constructs, are not the same. Discrimination always has to be viewed through the prism of social power imbalances. Being gay doesn’t give you the same social status in the arena of sexual orientation as being White in the arena of ‘race’. Homosexuality does not lead to women being systemically disadvantaged in access to sexual partners, while whiteness systematically disadvantages people of colour (POC) in virtually everything.
It’s a purely physical attraction and I just don’t get hard for them… really now! Our attractions are not independent of the society – that’s why there are patterns of attraction repeated globally with White people being most racially exclusive in their attractions both sexually and romantically, Black men and Asian women most sexually fetishised, and Black women and Asian men least sexually and romantically desired. If we were purely driven by physical instincts then we would be mating with people who look differently from us as to minimise the threat of bad genetic mutations and have the best chance for successful offspring. ‘Race’ doesn’t exist biologically, it’s a purely social construct. Therefore, if your attractions run along racial lines then they actually run along societal lines and you can’t claim nature being the main driver.
If someone tells me they're not into White guys then I won't be offended …of course not, because you've got the ultimate white privilege of individuality and that sh*t doesn't happen to you every day and isn't linked to systemic oppression of your ‘race’ through many centuries. Racism doesn’t flow in both directions.
Black men saying “Black/ Mixed only” are the biggest racists… no, while most White people are stuck on the intellectually limited view of sexual attraction as purely physical (see above), all you have to do is ask a few men of colour to know that their conscious choice to meet other men of colour is heavily driven by the social context – the racism of White people, the desire to avoid cultural misunderstandings and by the yearning to celebrate Black beauty – which in itself is a political statement. Calling out Black men for their attraction to other Black men is the ultimate sign of whiteness which manifests itself through our entitlement to be the default desired partner of choice.
So I'm supposed to sleep with everyone even if I don't fancy them …no, I never told you to sleep with anyone - it's your body – do with it what you want. I'm just telling you that what you wrongly think of as “preference” is actually racism and you should interrogate the societal influences on your attractions.
It's not racism, in my opinion …of course, because you don't understand how deep racism runs. You know that racism is bad (that’s why you so actively resist being called a racist) but you don’t know what racism actually is – because we live in a society that is so deeply racist it became a norm hidden in plain sight. To protect the systemic advantage of White people, racism has to be seem as acts of individuals rather than a system of oppression. Bad news, what is and isn't racism is not a matter of opinion - it's a sociological fact – so sit back and listen.
I'm not racist, but… nothing good ever comes after but.... so instead of being outraged about being called a racist, why don't you get outraged about racism and do something to dismantle it today! Don’t be non-racist, be anti-racist!