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The Appropriation of Queer Issues to Promote K/S Slash [Jul. 24th, 2009|10:52 am]
Infinite Diversity in Infinite Combinations
[Current Mood |pissed offpissed off]

So Kirk and Spock have been having an epic (Slash) love affair for 40 years, of this there is no doubt. They are the Slash couple. They are in fact, as far as I'm aware, the namers of the genre, names after the "/" that goes between their names: Kirk(Slash)Spock.

In canon they are the best of friends - in the New!Canon they are primed to be quite good friends with an ally of their own at their sides, Uhura backing Spock and Bones backing Kirk.

The old dynamic refurbished for the 21st century, I like it. It was refreshing see a successful relationship happening aboard the enterprise, especially between Uhura and Spock, whose differences in manner and temperament make the whole thing so damn pretty.

My own fannisheness aside.

Star Trek as a franchise, in the 60's and to a certain extent up until the 80's was considered ahead of its time (hah!) when it came to representation of charterers and social issues. That isn't to say it wasn't or isn't flaws, we all know it is, but the ideal of Star Trek is that of the IDIC as much as it is to Boldly Go...

Now here's the pickle.
To Boldly Go... and the idea of IDIC aren't the co-optation and appropriation of Real Life issues and Human Rights in order to push a pairing a very particular and overly fethishised NON-Canon pairing in the name of Equality.

No really, it is not!

This campaign - started here and I quote:
From Gene Roddenberry: "Yes, there's certainly some of that - certainly with love overtones. Deep love. The only difference being, the Greek ideal - we never suggested in the series - physical love between the two. But it's the - we certainly had the feeling that the affection was sufficient for that, if that were the particular style of the 23rd century." Roddenberry directly stated that Kirk and Spock loved each other and that their level of love for one another was sufficient for a romantic relationship, and while he did not confirm or deny this relationship, he did mention essentially that if homosexuality was to be accepted in the 23rd century, then the relationship between the two characters would indeed be possible.

We've seen Brokeback Mountain, and we've seen other homosexual relationships on screen. However, the relationships are generally either the focus of the film, or comic relief. It would be a big step indeed to see the Captain and First Officer of the Enterprise in a relationship that is simply a normal part of life. The push is for equality in the media; for the normalization of GLBT relationships in movies and television.

See... it would have been okay, maybe, if the concern actually was LGBTQI representation in media and NOT the objectification of queer sexuality on screen.
Also, Brokwback Mountain, I've said it once, twice, three times a gentleman!
"Gay Movie for Straight People!"
Along with this little campaign which I hoped dies in obscurity into a fiery pit dowsed by torrential rain, there are people who just don't see the problem.
Like this precious quote:
Hm. I'm...Buhhh. I really like the K/S focus, to be honest. But I don't want to be stubborn and obtuse and cause unnecessary trouble by not agreeing. ._.
I really think it's a bit...silly? For people who support LGBT interests not to sign the petition or support us because they don't support the pairing. It's like if civil rights supporters decided not to support the movement because they didn't like MLK Jr.. Progress is progress, as long as we're not harming anyone, I think it's fine.
No offense to anyone, that's just my opinion.
From See Trek Love.

Crack open a book why don't you.

I'd like to add that the focus on a particular Fanon pairing and attempting to push it for Canonisation ostensibly in the name of Queer Rights is downright nauseating.
No really.
It is.

Especially since one is willing to pretty much "guilt"(?) a creator to change fictional character dynamics in the name of social change. I know that this may come off as hypocritical considering the very long debate I had not too long ago here regarding the same subject, namely Queering Kirk.
That really was just an example of how the Reboot could have been a little bit more awesome and more inclusive when it came to the Queer.

The new movie, though far from being terribly progressive, did see a huge leap for Uhura who was crucial to the plot and was not undermined by the fact that she is romantically involved with a superior officer, both of them concerned (as well they should be, I really like that they showed that concern) with the issues of Hierarchy.
That too was a little push of the envelope when it came to heteto representation and mixed-race couple representation.
Go Trek.

Again. A push for a specific same-sex pairing "in the name" of Queer Rights stinks of appropriation and an utter misunderstanding of what Queer Rights are and what media representation actually is.
You want to have more queer characters? I know I do, then campaign for THAT, not for an on-screen kiss between Chris Pine and Zack Quinto.

In the comments of the link at newtrekslash there are a few prime examples of cluelessness, racism and misogyny. Because Uhura is using her Nubian Wiles to keep Spock from his OTL Kirk.
Excuse me while I go vomit.

I urge you. Do Not Support this campaign. If you're going to mention in... mention that you oppose it. Please. This is just another example of the unwitting (though it really shouldn't be) homophobia found in fandom and should be not be tolerated, just like any transphobia, racism, misogyny and other forms of oppression should not be tolerated.

Ces't Tout.

Any questions?

[User Picture]From: calicokat
2009-07-24 08:08 am (UTC)
You'll see me on the forums there trying to have a reasoned discussion and...meeting K/S fans. I must say I've spoken personally to Lance, the guy behind the thing, and he's legitimately for equal representation for queers in the media and even willing to move the entire thing away from K/S but...I don't know, at this point, if he would be able.

I felt incredibly unwelcome and even a bit sickened by other people on the forums there. He very nicely invited me back to give input but I tried to go back and catch up on the forums and I found the whole thing a bit upsetting for a lot of the reasons you mentioned. Now I understand why a couple people on my flist can't stand the mention of K/S because of the fans.

I even tried to explain to that person that the bit you quoted up there was INCREDIBLY offensive as nicely as I could but that failed to help her grasp it.

At any rate I want to say Lance seemed really standup. The rest of it left me feeling like I needed a shower. I'd love to see a real campaign supporting the inclusion of gay characters in the film because Orci and Kurtzman have stated they're open to it. Fetishizing K/S isn't the way, though.
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From: eumelia
2009-07-24 08:12 am (UTC)
This seemed to have happened over night (where I am, time zones etc.) and I'm really happy that this isn't being let go.

Thanks for letting me know about the organiser. That is important.

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[User Picture]From: calicokat
2009-07-24 08:26 am (UTC)
I've participated in fan campagins before and honestly I couldn't be more willing to be helpful if it wasn't a campagin for K/S. The idea of people getting sent letters pushing K/S instead of just writing that works and not "another dead queer" actually began to upset me the more perspective I got on it.

Maybe you could collect your thoughts and contact Lance through PMs? Some of the people on those forums make me really very sad.
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From: eumelia
2009-07-24 08:47 am (UTC)
I think I will take your advice.
I agree regarding fan campaigns, as I mentioned the accessibility between fans and creators has never been so close (or confusing) making that route very strong indeed.

Is Lance the one who posted the original entry? If not, what's the Username?

Thank you.
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[User Picture]From: calicokat
2009-07-24 08:53 am (UTC)
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[User Picture]From: calicokat
2009-07-24 10:15 am (UTC)
(Looking back at the thread I realize I didn't even start in on the appropriating-MLK-fail of that quote. My "fangirls are appropriating queer activism to push their ship" freak out limited my scope. u_u;;)
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