Yeah I know, common usage is Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Questioning/Queer, Allies. Well, I think that is horseshit and it should be changed.
I'm sorry, allies. In my opinion, you don't belong in the purpose of the acronym. Here's why:
1. The acronym stands for people who are "othered" because of their identities. Asexuals are most definitely othered in many ways. Asexuality is an identity that is, 9 times out of 10, ignored. In fact, asexuality not only faces the issue of being "othered," but it is also largely invisible. The A should be for Asexuality. Everywhere. I implore you to bring this up to your local group.
2. Remember what I said about "othering"? "Ally" is not an identity. Allies are nice people who have probably at least one right motive for supporting LGBTQA people. But they don't belong in this acronym because they are not a repressed minority. Allies still enjoy the privilege of being deemed "normal" by society. Think of it this way, a room full of "allies" is just a room full of straight / cisgender people who aren't assholes. They are not what the movement is about.
Don't get me wrong, allies are cool and nice to have surrounding you when you are confronted by a homophobe or transphobe. Thank you for being decent, tolerant human beings. Isn't just doing that enough? Why demand recognition?
Allies who feel the need to be recognized by tacking themselves onto the acronym do not have the right motives. Sorry. If your support is so flimsy that not being recognized in the acronym angers you, then you need to seriously reconsider how open minded you really are.
I think this tumblr post says it best:
Ally" cannot be a label that someone stamps onto you–or, god forbid, that you stamp on to yourself—so you can then go around claiming it as some kind of identity. It's not an identity. It's a practice. It's an active thing that must be done over and over again, in the largest and smallest ways, every day. — No More "Allies" |
***Before you comment to inform me that:***
1. The movement needs allies, because gosh without people who accept you and fight for you, the movement doesn't have teeth!
2. Aren't I just "othering allies" / why do I have to be so mean about it can't we just involve everyone!
3. I have made you feel bad about being a nice person!
Then honestly, go read everything I just wrote again. And in terms of #1, yes, ally voices help. But it is easy to let ally voices drown out the voices of people who are actually othered. It is good to stand behind the people who you think deserve equal rights. It is not good to drown them out. You have not lived through it, you only have anecdotal evidence. Let the primary sources be primary. Be a good person and give them a hand when they need it.
And for those of you in disbelief, here is the first page of a Google search:
ETA: The sheer amount of people reaffirming that they were taught A = Asexual makes my heart so glad. I think a lot of the A = Ally stuff occurs in college groups, the names of local organizations, etc. I am very very pleased with the amount of confused affirmations in the comments.
ETA2: Oh my god. Just caught that I wrote "straight" up top in the beginning sentence? What the actual shit. Mea maxima culpa.