Being a queer person who was out during, and remembers, the 1990s and 2000s means a lot of "look this thing seems terrible now, and it has its problems, but it was VERY GROUNDBREAKING back then"
I'm always torn between not wanting to defend things that haven't aged well and feeling loyalty to things that made me feel seen in some way as a young queer
I also feel weird about erasing/condemning what is effectively queer history because the way we configure and understand queer identity has rapidly shifted over the past twenty years
To Wong Foo, Thanks For Everything! Julie Newmar does not understand what a drag queen is and has a very outdated and offensive bit about the difference between trans women and drag queens, but at the same time... omg, the power of that movie for me as a teen
I think that one holds up better than most queer rep of that era, especially given how mainstream it was (Wesley Snipes and Patrick Swayze!!!)
It's the erasure of queer history aspect that really bugs me; I think it's important to understand why something that feels off in modern times was so important when it debuted rather than just tossing it in the trash
Another example I think about a lot: Billy Crystal as Jody Dallas in the 1970s soap opera satire SOAP.
Jody is openly and proudly gay, he has many amazing moments throughout the series. One I'm particularly fond of is a bit where he's in a custody battle for his daughter, and when asked if he's a "practicing homosexual" he responds, "I don't have to practice, I'm very good at it."

There are also a lot of problems. In one of his first arcs, Jody decides he's going to get a "sex change*" so that he can be his football player boyfriend's girlfriend.

* Feels weird to call it gender confirmation surgery because in this case it's not
I probably don't have to explain why this is a problematic plot; it's definitely not in any way representative of why people transition, it also acts as though Jody will go through surgery and then instantly "become a woman" which, eesh.
Even worse, in the final season Jody willing goes through conversion therapy so that he can date a woman (it backfires and he gets stuck in a past life where he's an old Jewish man because Billy Crystal), which I absolutely HATED and felt betrayed by.
I won't defend either of those arcs (and there are probably other bad moments that I'm forgetting), but the show still advocates for Jody's humanity, and shows him struggling with a homophobic stepfather (who eventually gets over his bullshit IIRC).
Also there's a brief part where he's co-parenting with a lesbian and this is framed by the show as a healthy and positive environment for a child!
So, it's complicated for me! Jody mattered a lot to me when I was watching SOAP on VHS as a tween; I also think (and thought at the time) that there are problems with his depiction. But I don't think he should be tossed in the trash.
I mean how can I get rid of this gold
This is now a Jodie Dallas appreciation thread
Also I just watched an interview with Billy Crystal where he said that when they had the plot about Jodie being in a custody battle with the friend he impregnated during a one night stand, an ABC poll showed that a majority of viewers thought Jodie should get custody.
We're still debating gay parents (at least re: adoption) in 2021, but over 40 years ago Jodie Dallas convinced people of the obvious fact that gay people are just as good parents as straight people, and that matters!

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More from @LuxAlptraum

15 Sep
You can’t say digital is just as valuable as print if you’re not paying digital writers the same as print writers. Full stop.
To be clear: I’ve never written for the New Yorker but I have done both print and digital for Wired, and print *was* more work, at least in my experience. But if that’s why print pays more we should say that.
Read 4 tweets
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Did it hurt? When you learned that vegetables are also carbs?
I find it truly hilarious when people talk about their carb-free plate of broccoli… babe, it ain’t protein or fat
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Seems wrong that Republican governors can needlessly imperil the lives of their citizens and everyone goes, “Welp, what did you expect, their base will love it”
Like all the headlines I’m reading are wringing their hands about whether Democrats will hold on to Congress in 2022 when the opposition’s party platform is literally “die scum”
Love the two party system!!!!!!
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I know Millennials are supposed to be fragile babies who love telling the world about how traumatized we are, but one of the things that I have realized as I’ve gotten older is how *difficult* it has been for me to acknowledge that I have trauma.
It took until *this year* — twenty full years!! — for me to consider the possibility that I have trauma from 9/11. For twenty years I assumed that because I’d slept through the attacks and was completely safe, I couldn’t have trauma.
And because I have loved ones who witnessed the attacks, I didn’t want to center myself in the story by claiming trauma.

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Congrats to California on avoiding the nightmare of Governor Larry Elder
You know how people are always like “we’re a republic, not a democracy!”? California — and this recall election — is an example of direct democracy, and it is sadly prone to a significant amount of abuse.
It’s not just the recall: ballot initiatives have sometimes done great things for California, but they’ve also done horrible things too (hello Prop 8). It’s complicated!
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I’m on the record (repeatedly!) as saying that awards shows are stupid so I can make this joke without looking like a hypocrite 😇
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