The queer community differs from its counterpart in various ways, often in beliefs, values, interactions, the way one sees themselves in the world, and the way one interacts with others. These differences become exacerbated when we apply these differences to both groups (heterosexual and homosexual) as cultures. For the remainder of this passage, I will try to present an explanation for the way queer agents negatively interact with each other in positive queer spaces. These interactions cause a division between queer people that results in a social obstacle preventing some queer agents from forming friendships. By consequence, this social obstacle also prevents the queer community from becoming a positive and healthy one. This obstacle arises from the way an agent views another and should call for a different way of looking at each other. It should be noted that what I am about to describe in this passage has no name, but I hope to make a better sense of an issue in queer spaces that queer agents experience but commonly are overlooked.
This passage is about unnecessary aggression in queer-friendly spaces. Some often describe this aggression as unwarranted “petty” behavior. It is a sense of competition in queer spaces that resonates with other queer agents, and this sense of competition could possibly stem from an issue that exists in homosexual culture and not in heterosexual culture. Within heterosexual culture, through gender marking, it is easy for heterosexual agents to distinguish those who are competition and those who are potential partners. Within homosexual cultures, this distinction is more difficult to make and therefore causes internalized aggression when one does not know where another agent lies and by a fault on both parties.
I am not discussing the repercussions of a hook-up culture within queer culture. In fact, there is reason to believe that hook-up culture should be common within queer communities given that their identity as a queer agent hinges on the fact that they sexually desire differently from heterosexuals. If so, then some extent of hyper-sexuality in queer communities is expected. What want to focus on is the way queer agents look at each other. Given that their identity hinges on sexual desire, it causes a sexual objectification assumed at other agents.
When in queer spaces, these queer agents look at each other with some assumption of desire for another agent with the idea that this agent looks at them the same way. At first, there is an unknown problem set upon the agent, for they do not know for certain if the other agent is a potential partner or if they are potential competition in the same space. To satisfy this issue of unknowing, the problem can be solved by simple communication. These queer agents are desiring the same goals given their placement in the queer space; a hope for a partner or companion to satisfy both physical and emotional needs. When these assumptions about the other agents are correct, then all is well. One queer agent is seeing another queer agent as a potential partner and vice versa, so their desires are mutual. On the other hand, when two agents see each other as potential competitors in the same queer space, there may be a sense of competition but no real hostility since it is at least mutual.
The issue that occurs is when one agent makes a wrong assumption towards another agent by seeing them as a potential partner when they are not. They do not even have to be a potential competitor in the same space for other conditions may be hindering that option. A series of events unfold on both parties when a wrong assumption is made about an agent. On the side of the agent assuming: (1a) They are now seen to have made a wrong evaluation of the other agent. (2a) The agent is now aware that the other agent is not a potential partner and therefore now seen as a potential competitor in the same queer space. These fallacies cause a tension for the agent because what was initially desired by the agent cannot be satisfied and therefore causes a dysphoria.
The agent making the response also accidently makes issues of their own, possibly unaware to them. On the side of the agent responding: (1b) They have refused the role of potential partner, a form of denial of proposition to the agent. (2b) By refusing the role of potential partner, they have, by logic, announced they are, rather, a potential competitor to the agent assuming. What occurs from these four assumptions is that it now places both the agent propositioning and the agent responding at ends with one another when it was not presumed prior. Given the degree of dysphoria from this interaction, both agents have divided each other in that queer space, causing a hostility or anxiety between them.
I would like to insert here that I am not implying that one agent has control over another agent’s body for that is wrong, standalone. Instead, what I want to imply is that there is an assumption that being a queer agent in queer spaces inherently has the presupposition of that initial goal, mentioned earlier, a hope for a partner or companion to satisfy physical or emotional needs.
A continuation of this problem exists later. If those two agents are in the same queer space again, there is a presumed hostility between them from their awkward experience prior. The hostility is inherent because the problem of unknowing gets by-passed. They do not need to question where the other agent stands because they now know that they are in competition towards each other. This hostility becomes internalized as time goes on and the two agents will commonly interact with each other negatively from then on out. Since no positive interaction will occur between the two agents unless by some alternate circumstance, the agents never form a bond that can be positive.
This phenomenon happens frequently in the queer community. This anxiety and hostility would not be an issue if it were an isolated-incident occurrence; unfortunately, that is not the case. Instead, the prevalence of this phenomenon hinders the capacity of the queer community from reaching a level of community that supports one another. If this did not happen, then the queer community can possibly grow past some of the other issues existing in it such as sexually-biased racism, ageism, masculine/feminine shaming, and romantic ambiguity. What I propose to change is the way in which the queer community looks at one another. They should refrain from looking at each other objectively and instead, lovingly.
In Marilyn Frye’s, “The Politics of Reality”, she writes of two ways of looking at agents. She presents the “arrogant eye” and the “loving eye”. They are not dichotomous as it is a way of viewing the world and it exists on a gradient scale of practice. One cannot simply switch from being an agent that views arrogantly to one that vies lovingly. Likewise, agents have tendencies of viewing the world in both ways at times. The arrogant eye sees the world as everything in relation to the agent, including people and objects. This way of viewing the world objectifies the other agents around us.
In the case presented earlier, even the presupposition of seeing other agents as either a potential partner or a potential competitor is viewing those agents in relation to the viewer. The agent sees the other agent as either a source of satisfaction to their desires or they see them as an agent that makes their desires harder to satisfy. In both cases, the other agent is still in relation to the viewer. It follows that those four fallacies mentioned earlier all see the other agent in relation to the person. This is true for the agent assuming and half-true for the agent responding, for they possibly do not know the incident that has happened.
Viewing the world with a loving eye would prevent the hostility and anxiety all together. To see something lovingly, one sees the other agent in no relation to them and instead, sees that agent as a full agent alone, capable of potential that is exclusive to that agent. To this, it would follow that if queer agents saw other queer agents in a loving manner, there would be no presumption whether they were a potential partner or potential competitor. They would see the agent as an agent on its own, in no relation to them. If the agent interacts with another agent in a loving manner, without the presuppositions, then two agents could form a bond of friendship and positive communication. With more positive communication in the queer community, there could be development in the whole community to make it a tight-knit group of support for other queer agents.
Given that a homosexual culture may inherently have presuppositions about sexual desires, it would be difficult for the community move to this way of interacting with each other. The presupposition of desire aimed at another agent will commonly have a notion of looking at someone arrogantly and, if adopting a whole loving eye way of interacting with each other, will diminish the premise of sexual desire that queer identity mostly hinges on. This is not a problem. Instead, it calls for the queer community to redefine how queer agents are to be with one another. Not in a manner of seeing each other as a means to an end but as viewing agents of the queer community as ends in and of themselves.