Monday, July 04, 2005

A Book, A Cover, A Problem

My first night out to a dance club in several months this past Saturday night yielded a scenario of racial confusion – that’s right, this blog is about race. (I figure I have attacked smokers, gays, and Tom Cruise, and politics, religion, and republicans are on my “TO DO” list.)

The first guy, a black man named Carl, approached me with a compliment and we stood and talked for a while. After several minutes of talking he asked me if I was “into black men”. I wondered what that was supposed to mean. I responded by saying that “I am not necessarily into black men, but I am into men.” He then responded with, “So that’s a yes, then?”

Maybe an hour later, I met a Latino man. Nice guy, he was, named Leandro. We talked for about 10 minutes and then he asked me if I “like Latinos”.

Black man #2 (who’s name I did not get) greeted me by grabbing my biceps and making a rude comment, which in his mind should have flattered me. When I brushed him off and told him to not touch me, he came back with “Oh right, turn down the black man!” I could not believe my ears. I responded by saying, “No, it’s because you're an idiot.”

I am wondering why this happens.

If another white guy approaches me, I am never asked if I am attracted to other white men, however it is automatically assumed that I do. Now I know there are some men out there, all from different races, who are strictly into men of other races. I personally have dated a few men who are not white. But do we still have to ask these questions of each other?

I sometimes dislike the gay social scene in DC because it is so segregated. All of the bars on 17th Street pander to mostly gay white men. I personally don’t want all of my friends to be gay white men. But that is all I can meet in DC. I can’t go to clubs like Bachelor’s Mill or Elite because I am made to feel unwelcome, and men won’t talk to me because they can’t be seen talking to me. I know this because I have tried this. And in truth, I don’t want to meet men of other races who are “into” white men. I want to meet men of other races who are interested in expanding their views and sharing their lives and experiences.

I am not trying to solve a problem that seems unsolvable. And I don’t think this is just a DC thing. More than once, a man of another race has tried to lecture me on being ignorant to what it is to be judged on physical appearance immediately. HELLO!?! I am big, bald, and tattooed. People who don’t think I am a Nazi supremacist, guess me being a mechanic, a police officer, or having any job requiring overalls. I am instantly judged by everyone who sees me. They have already sized me up – in their own opinions.

Why else would someone ask me if I was “into” another type of man?


  1. Totally cool post! As a black man, I feel total equality means to dump that baggage and not challenge potential sex partners with that nonsense! If a white guy's not into you, could be he's partnered, not looking or you are just ugly! No reason to try to shame the guy because of your own black man's baggage! Thanks for talking about this issue. Very cool dude. Darrell

  2. Hey there,

    I stumbled across your blog today and I must say, I *totally* agree. I mean, in my single days I never walked up to guys and said "Hey, are you into guys with blue eyes, brown hair and a medium build?".

    Why the colour of someone's skin needs a special precursor question unlike any other physical attribute is beyond me!

    It's really refreshing to know that some stranger on the other side of the world to me shares so many of my views.

    Live free be strong

  3. I had to deal with such racial preferences issue from the very beginning of my coming out. While I have grown to be very comfiortable in my skin, it has been a long journey. I think people asks these questions may be protecting themselves from rejection, I know I used to because I didn't want to handle being rejected... I agree it is very sad that we need to say things like ' so you like asians?' or ' are you into black guys?' the roles are reversed when you're in a country where caucasians are not the mainstream race... I long for a place where we need not look at someone's race and decided whether he's for me... I think beauty is universal regardless, no?