This post is the fifth post in a series of coverage from the Midwest Bisexual Lesbian Gay Transgender Ally College Conference 2010, that took place Feb. 19 to Feb. 21, 2010, at the University of Wisconsin – Madison.
I’ve heard the argument time and time again about the detrimental effects of negative portrayals of queers in the media, and the workshop titled “Media’s Marginality: TV’s Effects on LGBT Student Self-Perception” fell into that same trap.
Stereotypes exist because there are people who actually act like that who have that identity. For example, there are flamboyant gay men out there; they do exist. And while not every portrayal of gay men should be the same, by calling a stereotypical portrayal negative, people who act in the stereotypical manner are being told they are negative and we don’t want to be associated with you.
Yes, I know, the media influences people’s perceptions and can hurt our chance at equality and all of that typical rhetoric, but what would equality be if our most flamboyant, outrageous, atypical members aren’t allowed to partake in it?