What does it really mean to be queer?

Last Saturday was a pretty historical day for the queer movement in Iceland. Last Saturday, there was a general vote and the members of Samtökin ’78 voted for BDSM á Íslandi (BDSM in Iceland) to officially be a part of the local queer umbrella.

What does it mean be queer?

I, for one, am STOKED about the results. For the last few years, the queer community and queer politics have been moving way too far towards the mainstream. The focus has been on the gays and lesbians who want to have a nuclear family; on the trans folks who want to be “the opposite gender” but continue voting republican; ASSIMILATION into the destructive, patriarchal, gender binary focused society that has, throughout its history, held us down and oppressed us.

While I do acknowledge that there are plenty of queer folks who do want to join this comfortable, mainstream way of living, I want to be very clear about one thing.


And that needs to be acknowledged, and accepted. Many of us (and more and more each day with the young generation now) do not adhere to the gender binary, at all. With the dismantling of the gender binary comes, as a natural result, the dismantling of the binary of sexuality… because what is heterosexuality when we start accepting the fact that there are more than two genders? What meaning does “the opposite gender” hold now? Even bisexuality can take on a whole new meaning when we acknowledge that there are more than two and more than three genders in the world.

“… maybe, with the inclusion of BDSM under the queer umbrella, we can move towards a place where that sort of preference becomes just as common as being hetero, homo or bi.”

With this acknowledgement comes a whole different realm of possibilities. If you cannot say that you are attracted to the “opposite gender” anymore, what can you say instead? Perhaps you need to look deeper into what it is exactly that makes attraction possible for you. Perhaps you’ll find out that what you’re really attracted to, is a dominant personality. Or perhaps, a dominant personality in day to day life who is super submissive when it comes to sex. Perhaps it is the smell of cologne, or the feeling of slowly undressing a perfectly shaved leg of a pair of sheer stockings.

The new board of Samtökin ’78 (the national queer organization) that was elected last Saturday. Hilmar Hildar Magnúsarson was elected chair of the organization, third year in a row.

And perhaps, when it comes to sex, all you want is a penis. But think: does the factor of it being a flesh and muscle penis weigh more heavily against the gender identity of the person wearing it? Or would you be okay with the person wearing it identifying as male or masculine, as long as they had some version of a penetrative appendix (including, but not limited to, fingers, dildos, strap-ons and penis-shaped vibrators)?

I really want all of you to consider your sexual preferences but without terms like “male” or “female”. Delve a bit deeper into what it really is that attracts you and turns you on. Is that attraction based on a modern stereotype of what is masculine/feminine, or is it something else? Is it related to the amount of body hair, the role the person takes on during sex, the role the person takes on in public, a sense of adventure, a certain kind of hairstyle, a hobby… the possibilities really are endless!

Personally, I have a preference for people who are creative, adventurous, dominant in bed but not in day-to-day life, vegan/vegetarian and aware of current social justice politics. I don’t yet know what to call that preference, but maybe, with the inclusion of BDSM under the queer umbrella, we can move towards a place where that sort of preference becomes just as common as being hetero, homo or bi.

Note: The opinions, beliefs and viewpoints expressed by the various authors and forum participants on www.gayiceland.is do not necessarily reflect the opinions, beliefs and viewpoints of the editorial staff of www.gayiceland.is or official policies of the editorial staff.

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