I left Minneapolis ten days ago and moved back to my hometown, Cincinnati, OH. I am turning 33 in a couple of weeks, and have lived outside of Cincinnati for eight non-consecutive years. The most recent departure was a 3 year stint in Minnesota– St. Paul for two years and Minneapolis for one year. The entire time I lived there, I was part of an intentional, active, loving, intense radical queer community.
I don’t know that something quite like that exists here. Yes, there are radical queers in Cincinnati–I know some. But a radical queer community? Not so much. I feel sad because I am mourning the loss of a safer space community where my experiences and feelings are valued. I feel disappointed that racism, ableism, sexism, and other whack ass oppressions are prevalent in the gay community here.
Calling something gay and calling something lame are equally unacceptable to me. This is the best post I have ever seen on why I feel this way.
I also feel that Cincinnati culture is very gay focused, without making space for trans people. I think that the handful of queers I know are the exception to this, and that trans and genderqueer people here are creating space, but it does feel behind other places.
Will Rogers said that if the world was coming to an end, he’d go to Cincinnati because everything happens ten years later here. I have to remember that he was both a humorist, and right.
I did a semi-national job search and it brought me home. There is a reason I’m here, and it’s not just to eat chili.