What happened in Queer Nation in Toronto circa 1991? (Not 1985, as stated here.) We could ask Scott Thompson – or I could, if ever would invite me onto his podcast, whose ostensible final episode included this monologue of his (interjections elided, ≈40:00):

I always hated activism. Eeevery time I tried to get involved in an activist group, I was – sometimes literally – thrown out…. Thrown out of Queer Nation. Yeah. For being a man. Because they were discussing something— It was so bizarre. At that time, people were so polarized. And also sexual politics were feverish. So they’d have these meetings where they were afraid to have leadership because leadership was seen as patriarchal. Because men were more physical, they were in your face, and they had louder voices and all, women were like, “That’s an unfair advantage!” So they refused to have leaders. So there’d be a male and a female as co-leaders. So it was chaos. […]

There was a discussion about – oh, this is so stupid! There was a gay hotline, and the female leader went up and she was going on about the sexism of the hotline. How can a hotline be sexist? Because they were getting like eight times more calls were coming from gay men getting attacked than women, and therefore that proves sexism. So I put my hand up, and, even though I wasn’t supposed to [because] a woman had to speak before me and then someone in a wheelchair, when I finally had my chance to speak, I said: “Well, maybe that’s because women aren’t gaybashed the way men are.” The next thing you know it was like: Sexist! Sexist!

And I said: “Everybody in this room knows that gay men are the target.” Men don’t go out to beat up lesbians. It might happen, but it’s a one-off. You know? It’s rare. And that’s more under the umbrella of misogyny. But the truth is gaybashing is primarily about gay men. And I was thrown out. But thrown out for stating the obvious….

Oh, this would be 1985? Thrown out. I remember me and my boyfriend walked out at the time. I went, “I can’t stay in this stupid—” It was nonsense. I felt like I was in Soviet Russia back in the day…. It was like thoughtcrime. But look where we are today: There’s a lot of that going on. It never ended…. That’s my point. Whenever anyone is serious, all I hear is: Sexism! Hate crime! White male!

I remember being called “white male.” Like: “White male!” OK, whatever…. And most of the room was white males.

I actually have an anecdote of my own about Scott’s sitting a few rows behind me during and after my presentation on zapping Public Enemy.

The foregoing posting appeared on Joe Clark’s personal Weblog on 2014.12.04 12:30. This presentation was designed for printing and omits components that make sense only onscreen. (If you are seeing this on a screen, then the page stylesheet was not loaded or not loaded properly.) The permanent link is:

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None. I quit.

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