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Chelsea: The Dying Of A Gay Neighborhood, Murdered By Neo-Hetero-Homophobes

Three strikes and you are out, Chelsea.

After being called “faggot” thrice through the past summer season whereas strolling in the once-predominantly-gay neighborhood of Chelsea in New York Metropolis, we decided to move. We beloved Chelsea, however we had to go away her because she just isn’t the same gay neighborhood that we remember. The iconic gay neighborhood of the previous has been changed for the worse by the neo-hetero-homophobic-heterosexist transplants, who have relocated to New York City from small towns all through the United States, bringing with them their small minds. This drastic and dramatic change began slowly in 2000 and much more rapidly in 2009.

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Throughout the current years, gay women and men have been evicted from Chelsea and have been changed by heterosexual ladies and men, whether single or coupled, younger or older, school college students or working professionals, most of whom aren’t gay-friendly but, ironically, selected to maneuver to a well-known, predominantly gay neighborhood as a result of they wanted to live in a trendy, fairly, clear and secure space with a variety of great buying alternatives. The previous, wise saying that the gays beautify a neighborhood for the straights to invade girls storm trooper shirt and occupy is so very true and real. An necessary query to ask is: do the heterosexuals who relocate to Chelsea even know that it was as soon as a gay neighborhood, or do their heterosexist and heteronormative considering and habits make them oblivious and egocentric?

In 2005 we moved to Chelsea from Brooklyn, N.Y. as a result of we wanted to feel welcomed, accepted, comfy and secure in a predominantly gay neighborhood. We longed for the sense of neighborhood that so many different minority groups have been fortunate enough to expertise. So, we crossed the East River from one borough to another. As native New Yorkers, our transition was easy. (Michael, 36, was born and raised within the Kings Bay/Sheepshead Bay neighborhood of Brooklyn; Joseph, 31, was born and raised within the Bath Seaside/Bensonhurst neighborhood of Brooklyn.) We had been acquainted with Chelsea because, like so many other gay males, we have been regular visitors because the mid and late 1990s, escaping our own predominantly heterosexual and heterosexist — and sometimes homophobic — neighborhoods in Brooklyn for a style of gay life.

So, in 2005, we decided to be residents of Chelsea, not guests; nonetheless, it is no longer the identical neighborhood of which we as soon as so enthusiastically needed to be a component. Years in the past, it was a spot where we had been allowed and in a position to be our gay selves, without being embarrassed, ashamed, uncomfortable, ostracized, hated and judged. We were free to be who we had been and who we wished to be. We were open-minded, advanced, progressive and liberal. We did not feel oppressed, repressed, marginalized, stigmatized and discriminated towards. We gays had been as soon as the majority in Chelsea, and it was empowering. Now, we are the minority, feeling powerless, discarded and disrespected. Sadly, we’re outcasts as soon as again, in a neighborhood that we made our personal.

Up to now, after we walked down the streets in Chelsea, we didn’t obtain scornful stares and hateful feedback. We had been in a position to wear our tight, brief, pink shorts and our tight, lavender tank tops with out the looks of disdain and ridicule. We have been able to walk alongside the Hudson River Park shirtless, without looks of contempt and horror. We were able to hold fingers and hug and kiss in public with out the appears of disgust and intolerance. However not now. Clearly, most of the new heterosexist, homophobic, straight transplants in Chelsea have never seen actual reside gay women and men. We’re like wild animals in a zoo, whom they’re observing for their very own pleasure or displeasure; whether we are caged or uncaged doesn’t make a distinction.

Contrary to what some individuals consider, a gay ghetto was never a foul thing. And a gay diaspora shouldn’t be necessarily a superb thing. Are the girls storm trooper shirt new heterosexuals in Chelsea making an attempt to divide and conquer us? We gays have been forced to disperse, which makes it harder for us to unite and struggle for our rights and equality. Is that this what they need?

So, who is to blame for this destructive change to Chelsea? Nicely, listed here are the culprits: realtors, enterprise house owners, corporations, faculties and universities, the media, Mayor Bloomberg and the local politicians. Nowadays, Chelsea is one massive theme park and tourist attraction. It has been glamorized, romanticized and gentrified for the brand new heterosexuals and their bigotry.

Chelsea is lifeless. What’s the subsequent gay neighborhood? This month we moved to Astoria, Queens, with a purpose to be round extra native New Yorkers and more gay men. Will Astoria be the brand new Chelsea? Possibly. Maybe not. At the least we have not noticed the neo-hetero-homophobes in Astoria.

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