It’s springtime in Iceland, when the sun shining in the morning means that you’ll be buried under a mountain of snow by noon. It’s the season which brings out the irony in Icelanders and so in that spirit here are eight surefire ways for you cis straight folk out there to piss your queer friends off – just in case you wandered into this site.
1. Tell queer people that they don’t face any discrimination.
Things are pretty good for queer people in Iceland, aren’t they? Homosexuals can marry, transsexuals can undergo gender affirming surgeries and lesbians can become prime ministers. You’re not aware of any discrimination or prejudice against queer people and you should know because you have a gay cousin. So why bother asking queer people if they feel marginalized or discriminated against in their daily lives? Just go ahead and state the fact. If you aren’t aware of it, it doesn’t exist.
2. Advise them on the best way to gain equality.
Because after all you’re an expert, right? So try out these classics:
– Don’t be so angry, you’ll just lose support from us cis straight folk.
– People would listen if you just explain patiently.
– Don’t be so demanding. Smile and be happy and then people will accept you.
– Don’t be so loud, queer and in your face. Just act like everyone else.
– Just be patient, things will change eventually.
– I think you should [insert a random activity the person you are talking to is probably already doing].
3. Use the word “gay” a lot.
Gay pride, gay rights, national gay organization, gay community, gay marriage, gay news, gay-straight alliance. Gay gay gay gay gay gay gay gay! Especially when talking to queer people who don’t identify as homosexual. They just love the smell of erasure and silencing in the morning.
4. Tell them you are just the same.
Because there’s nothing more reassuring than hearing that you, cis straight people, can’t empathize with us queers unless you consider us one of you.
However, should you run into those pesky queers maintaining that they are different from you, yet equal to you, then don’t hesitate going full Borg (bald head, weird-looking eye piece and all) on them explaining: “Resistance is futile. You will be assimilated”
Oh, in this case you haven’t heard of the Borg, they’re those cuddly aliens from Star Trek who assimilate other species into their collective by force.
5. Ask painfully personal questions.
– So how does this corrective surgery work anyway?
– Who is the woman in the relationship?
– How do two women have sex?
– How did you have your baby exactly, you know, since you’re gay?
– Don’t you just have threesomes all the time?
– So what was your name before the surgery?
We all know that queer people just love divulging intimate details about their personal lives. So keep the inappropriate questions coming and never stop to ponder if you would ask a (cis) straight person the same thing.
6. Do not under any circumstances use the internet or other resources to educate yourself on queer issues.
Search engines are so much hassle when you know an actual queer person who has nothing better to do than teach a perpetual a crash course in queer issues for beginners. If they suggest you start with Google then don’t hesitate to show them how irritated you fell about the whole idea. After all they should be happy and honored that you’re showing an interest.
7. When called out on trans/bi/homo/polyphobia, hide behind the nearest queer person.
“Who? Me? Transphobic? No way, my cousin is trans.”
“No I didn’t mean it like that. I can’t be biphobic. My ex-boyfriend is bi.”
After all it’s not entirely preposterous to use queer friends and family members as a cover after marginalizing them in one way or another.
8. Assume that queer people are there for your entertainment.
Remember last Reykjavík Pride parade and all the cis straight onlookers going: “Where is all the glitter? Why are they so serious and political and talking about dead trans* people? This is not entertainment. And why are these men over there half-naked? Don’t you see we have children here? Where is the family fun we were promised?”
Feel free to dictate how a marginalized group like queer people express themselves. Especially when it’s during the one afternoon in the year when their voices are supposed to be heard over the majority cis straight crowd. Seriously go ahead, it’s not frustrating at all.
Note: Cisgender and cissexual (often abbreviated to simply cis) describe related types of gender identity where an individual’s experience of their own gender matches the sex they were assigned at birth. More info on wikipedia.org