Gem Sheps: Queerly Beloved

_DSC4416Thursday nights at Tracks night club are 18+ nights and the only time I’ll be able to go to the club until I turn 21 next year.

Places like Tracks can be an oasis for people in the LGBTQ+ community—it can be difficult to meet other gay people on a day-to-day basis (or at least to know if you’ve met another gay person), and gay clubs are one of the only places transgender people may feel comfortable presenting themselves. They’re also just fun places to be, which is why gay clubs are so popular.

Unfortunately, that means people who aren’t a part of the LGBTQ+ community may find their way there to have fun: there’s no law dictating that straight people aren’t allowed in gay clubs, but it’s kind of unspoken. Every other club in the world can be considered a straight club. Give us this one.

It’s not an outright crime for straight people to go to gay clubs, especially if they’re going with LGBTQ+ friends, but if I walk into Tracks and see one more group of drunk straight girls hosting their bachelorette party there, I might scream.

What are they doing there? Is it some kind of fun tourist activity for them? It’s all fun and games to come into a safe space for LGBTQ+ people and enjoy yourself until you’re making fun of—or insulting—queer girls for hitting on you. Sorry, my bad, it’s just that you came into a queer community space and that’s what we do here.

Gay people can’t exactly meet our soulmates in the produce aisle of King Soopers—that is to say, we can, but we might not know for weeks or months after meeting that they’re even queer. It’s still taboo to be out and proud, so exclaiming to every person you meet that you’re a lesbian doesn’t always work (ah, if only).

I get it. The drag shows are fun, and the atmosphere is great, but places like Tracks are some of the only places queer people get to be themselves. Especially after the events in Orlando this summer at Pulse Nightclub, spaces for LGBTQ+ solidarity are needed, and it can be hard to get that when we’re trying to justify our queerness to the straight people around

Gem Sheps
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