I AM...

I am whatever YOU think I am until YOU get to KNOW me. This is true for everyone else too, of course.. so don't make assumptions about anyone or pass judgment; ask questions. You might just make a new friend.

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Monday, February 20, 2017

"TOP PRIVILEGE" LET'S CHAT...

If you turn on your Grindr or Scruff or any other hook-up app, you will see your screen littered with torsos within small boxes. I would say that a large percentage of these profiles will state things like, “Masc only,” or, “No fems,” or, “Be a real man,” etc. Others will state, “Masc guy here,” or, “Athletic,” or, “Real man,” blah, blah, blah. You get the picture.

In gay sex masculinity is hot right now, and it has been for a long, long time. And beyond all these declarations of a desired gender performance, you will see another word float around with frequency: “top.” This is as in, “Top here” or “Bttm looking for top” or “You be a top.” and so on and so on. Top. Top. Top.

It seems that everyone is a top on Grindr. If some anthropologist in the future only looked at today’s Grindr profiles for information on gay men, then they’d think bottoms were on the brink of extinction. This is obviously untrue, and I believe the use of “top” on online profiles is more a way to bait people into responding to a message sent on one of these platforms. It’s like a worm on a fishing hook.

Tops are highly desired not only because of the sexual aspect of topping but because many see the “top” identity as synonymous with masculinity or being a “real man.”

The patriarchy tells us that to be a man is to be the penetrator, the phallus, etc. And in this line of thought, bottoms are seen “less than,” “feminine” or “the woman” because they are the taker of the phallus. A notion too many of us buy into. Tops in the gay world are seen as ideal men, and not just because of what they do in the bedroom but because of what they represent to society: a “real man.” That means that we have some self-loathing to work through. So is top privilege a thing? 


It seems that by using this term we are actually describing bigger issues at hand, things that have to do with gender, power, and desire, things that transcend just sex or our Grindr profiles and deserve more attention and analysis than crassly labeling how one uses his penis a privilege.

TODAY IS LOVE YOUR PET DAY!












HELP KEEP MICHAEL JOHNSON OUT OF PRISON

Michael Johnson sent shock waves around the HIV-positive community in 2015 when the Olympic-aspiring college wrestler was arrested under Missouri’s HIV criminalization laws, and charged for “recklessly infecting another with HIV,” and for counts of “recklessly risking infection of another with HIV,” as Plus previously reported

Johnson’s trial was ridden with racism, homophobia, and ignorance from the start — even from his own defense council. His lawyer’s opening words to the jury were apparently, “You have to consider my client guilty until proven otherwise.” The judge reportedly corrected the public defender by saying, "I believe you meant to say 'innocent.'"

The jury took only a few hours to deliberate, before sentencing Johnson to 30.5 years. 

Thankfully, last December the Missouri Court of Appeals reversed his conviction based on the prosecution’s failure to turn over important evidence on time. This can be new beginning for Johnson, but he needs our help. 

In order for Johnson to truly get a second chance, he needs the best legal counsel available at his new trial — one that doesn’t think his client is “guilty until proven otherwise.” 

The new trial date has not been set yet, but what we do know is that Johnson needs to raise $20,000 in 20 days. According to his funding page on Funded Justice, the money will be used to hire a private attorney that has the experience, background, and passion to help him fight the HIV criminalization laws in Missouri. 
Any and all amount of monies will be one step toward justice. 


To donate, please CLICK HERE. 

SOURCE: HIV PLUS MAGAZINE




Sunday, February 19, 2017

RECOGNIZING YOUR VALUE...

It can be easy sometimes to buy into the illusion of our own insignificance. We may see large corporations or institutions, celebrities or successful people in our community, and compare ourselves to them, thinking that their fame or material power affirm how little our own lives amount to. But nothing could be further from the truth. 

Every single one of us matters--tremendously. Our very existence affects countless people in countless ways. And because we are each essentially a microcosm of the larger universe, our internal experiences affect the whole of life more than we could ever imagine. The world simply could not exist as it does now if you, or any one of us, were not in it.

TODAY IS CHOCOLATE MINT DAY!






























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