With the Q Center’s upcoming photo shoot, there are many interesting things to write about! I could talk about the camera, set up, or the outfits our youth will conjure up, but I’d like to focus on a more abstract connection—the one between our photo shoot and mass media portrayal of the oppressed minority. The Q Center photo shoot is so exciting because ALL our youth that want to look fierce and be photographed will have the opportunity to—no matter their gender identity/expression, body type, sexuality, hair type, skin color, socioeconomic status, or cultural background. None of these are a deciding factor of who will be seen in our pictures.
To me, this isn’t a hard concept to follow. When we apply the idea that “everyone should be seen and heard” to shows, movies, articles, and news coverage, then amazing shows like Orange is the New Black, the Fosters, and Orphan Black are created. Look at how many TV shows are produced each year and how many actors are involved. Out of these, I can only list three shows that are partially inclusive of oppressed minorities. Taking into account the systemic oppression in our country, it isn’t hard to believe that the peaceful protesters of Mike Brown’s murder who chanted with their hands up, “No Justice, No Peace” were reported as yelling “kill the police” (http://thinkprogress.org/justice/2014/08/10/3469602/ferguson-police-michael-brown/).
It is of utmost importance to talk about these issues, especially with how close to home the lack of media coverage affects each of us. Whether it is body policing, the killing of trans* women, or the lack of representation of diverse people in our favorite movies, the failure to be inclusive is devastating. There is a lot to think about and hold in our hearts. I think it is super important that we recognize what needs to change in our world and then pursue that change. Sometimes the change we make cannot be a tsunami, but rather a wave that keeps coming back to the shore. It takes time to transform a whole societal way of thinking.
On Friday, August 28th the Q Center will proudly create queer inclusive media through a fierce photo shoot. We welcome all identities to join us. This is our change; our response to the lacking representation of our identities!