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Borderlands

22 Jan

Though we “understand” the root causes of male hatred and fear, and the
subsequent wounding of women, we do not excuse, we do not condone, and we
will no longer put up with it. From the men of our race, we demand the admission/
acknowledgement/disclosure/testimony that they wound us, violate us, are afraid
of us and of our power. We need them to say they will begin to eliminate their
hurtful put-down ways. But more than the words, we demand acts. We say to them:
we will develop equal power with you and those who have shamed us.
It is imperative that mestizas support each other in changing the sexist
elements in the Mexican-Indian culture. As long as woman is put down, the Indian
and the Black in all of us is put down. The struggle of the mestiza is above all a
feminist one. As long as los hombres think they have to chingar mujeres and each
other to be men, as long as men are taught that they are superior and therefore
culturally favored over la mujer, as long as to be a vieja is a thing of derision, there
can be no real healing of our psyches. We’re halfway there—we have such love of
the Mother, the good mother. The first step is to unlearn the puta/virgen dichotomy
and to see Coatlalopeuh-Coatlicue in the Mother, Guadalupe.
Tenderness, a sign of vulnerability, is so feared that it is showered on women
with verbal abuse and blows. Men, even more than women, are fettered to gender
roles. Women at least have had the guts to break out of bondage. Only gay men have
had the courage to expose themselves to the woman inside them and to challenge
the current masculinity. I’ve encountered a few scattered and isolated gentle
straight men, the beginnings of a new breed, but they are confused, and entangled
with sexist behaviors that they have not been able to eradicate. We need a new
masculinity and the new man needs a movement.

Lumping the males who deviate from the general norm with man, the
oppressor, is a gross injustice. Asombra pensar que nos hemos quedado en ese pozo
oscuro donde el mundo encierra a las lesbianas. Asombra pensar que hemos, como
femenístas y lesbianas, cerrado nuestros corazónes a los hombres, a nuestros
hermanos los jotos, desheredados y marginales como nosotros. Being the supreme
crossers of cultures, homosexuals have strong bonds with the queer white, Black,
Asian, Native American, Latino, and with the queer in Italy, Australia and the rest of
the planet. We come from all colors, all classes, all races, all time periods. Our role is
to link people with each other—the Blacks with Jews with Indians with Asians with
whites with extraterrestrials. It is to transfer ideas and information from one
culture to another. Colored homosexuals have more knowledge of other cultures;
have always been at the forefront (although sometimes in the closet) of all
liberation struggles in this country; have suffered more injustices and have survived
them despite all odds. Chicanos need to acknowledge the political and artistic
contributions of their queer. People, listen to what your joteria is saying.
The mestizo and the queer exist at this time and point on the evolutionary
continuum for a purpose. We are a blending that proves that all blood is intricately
woven together, and that we are spawned out of similar souls.

Gloria Anzaldúa

Artist: Beatriz Guzman Velasquez

Artist: Beatriz Guzman Velasquez

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1 Comment

Posted by on January 22, 2013 in Historical radical pieces

 

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One response to “Borderlands

  1. Gregório

    January 26, 2013 at 4:53 pm

    …and that is why Gloria Anzaldúa is amazing! I don’t know when this was written but it’s scary how well it applies to this current time in this current context of malintZINE.

     

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