Is stating "no Blacks, no Asians" on a dating profile acceptable? No, argues Alex Hopkins.  It's sexual racism and needs to be challenged.


"I’m not racist. It’s my preference and I’ve got a right to express it." This was the reply I received on a gay hookup app when I challenged a member about his profile text: "No Blacks, no Asians. Whites only."

I’m not in the habit of confronting other gay men about what they write on their profiles. Live and let live, and all that. But after seeing at least 10 other taglines which employed similar language, I’d had enough. "Sexual racism" - the use of language in a way which excludes, generalises and belittles - to define sexual taste is an unpleasant by-product of our internet age. The time had come for me to call people out on it.

 

What is racism?


Was the person who wrote this racist? From a few words alone it is perhaps not possible to ascertain if the writer habitually practises racist behaviour, but by using words which segregate on the basis of ethnic background, that person is drawing upon a set of judgments already made about a person - an individual they do not know - based purely on the colour of his skin. Words may come cheap, but they are also powerful: prejudice only becomes part of the legislature when it is written down, and is thereby sanctioned. When you’re hiding behind the anonymity of a computer screen it’s easier to lapse into abuse: casually racist language sucks us into the myth of separatism, into treating other races as inferior. Is having “no blacks” emblazoned across the top of your bulging torso picture any less dangerous than a “whites only” sign on a beach in Apartheid South Africa? 

 

“My type”


A common defense of “sexual racism” is that the person who exhibits it is merely stating his sexual preference. Gay men, some argue, have fought endless battles to be able to loudly proclaim their right to have sex with anyone they choose. Their sexual preferences are sacred - even if they contradict other beliefs they claim to have. 

Gay male history has largely been shaped by persecution based upon sexual desire. How bizarre then that now that gay men have won unprecedented rights in the eyes of the law some feel that they have the right to mark out others for vilification. The problem with rights is that when those who have been deprived of them for so long finally start to win them, they often become rather forgetful and self-righteous about who else deserves them. 
 

images.jpeg


Being “honest” about the “type” of person you want to have sex with (another tedious, common defense) perpetuates a racist ideology that enforces another hierarchy, a pecking order that implies some people are more human - and thereby worthy of attention - than others. If you are so rigid and narrow-minded in your preferences that you can’t possibly entertain men from other races, why not exercise some sensitivity by stating who you prefer to date rather than saying ‘no blacks’, or just remain silent on the issue? To do anything else not only reeks of white-male privilege, but more more tellingly still, points to a person who is so appalled by the vision of people with darker skin, that they feel compelled to speak out and denigrate them. 

 

Hurt
 

Imagine being told that you don’t live up to someone else’s ideal - that you’re unwanted, useless, fit only to be ignored or discarded. And then imagine being told this repeatedly. What impact would that have on your self-esteem? Were you one of those many gay men who was bullied as a child for being different? Too feminine, maybe? Not being good enough at football? Many of us were and those experiences scar. Casual racism is no different. 

 

200_s.gif


The internet is an immensely powerful tool. There is no quicker and more efficient way to spread information and influence attitudes. Racism, as history has shown, often begins quietly: a disparaging remark here, an act of exclusion there. It gathers momentum as it attracts more followers, as it silently infiltrates the collective psyche. Preconceptions drive it. None of us are born with these; they accumulate over time, based on what we hear, see or read. The recent images of US police officers attacking black men have been founded not on the reality that those black men were carrying weapons, but a warped belief that they are predisposed to violence. We all have the choice - and responsibility - to call people out on these ideas before they become endemic. 

 

Keeping your options open
 

How many of us can say that we have always been sexually attracted to one type of man? Sexual tastes change over time. At 18 my first sexual experiences were predominantly with white men, but years later my bedroom would, at certain points, resemble a particularly lively meeting of delegates from the Brazilian consulate. 

Being human is about being open to new experiences. Desire - unpredictable, uncontrollable, all-consuming and maddening - is forever changing as we question and grow. How many of us can confidently state - in the same dogmatic way in which we insist on a certain shade of skin - that if we were to get to know a person from one of those ethnic groups we’ve been so quick to close our minds to - that we may not fall in love with someone completely new and exciting? And how unexpected and wonderful that could be.

Take part in our Poll

 

 

 


 


YOU MAY ALSO LIKE

9 comments

Your content will need to be approved by a moderator

Guest
You are commenting as a guest. If you have an account, please sign in.
Add a comment...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Restore formatting

  Only 75 emoticons maximum are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.



Guest

Posted · Report

This is a good video to watch... sums it all up about how stupid sexual racism is... [url]https://youtu.be/zWFQ1uiD8LA[/url]

Share this comment


Link to comment
Share on other sites
alex1998k

Posted · Report

To be honest, I don't understand the problem at all. After reading that article, I have some ideas on the matter and these ideas are different and I'm not sure how to organise them in the right order. So, I'll just express them with numbers. 1). What do we mean by racism? According to Collins dictionary, racism is '1. the belief that races have distinctive cultural characteristics determined by hereditary factors and that this endows some races with an intrinsic superiority over others 2. abusive or aggressive behaviour towards members of another race on the basis of such a belief'. So, there is no racism in stating 'No Blacks. No Asians'. This statement doesn't mean that some races are superior or inferior to others. The person who has written can't be accused of 'abusing or aggressively behaving towards members of another race'. 2). What attitude should we have towards single-race dating networks? (Such as blackpeoplemeet.com or asiandating.com and so on) 3). On lots of dating sites there are several options which we use in order to look for new people. Criteria, sort of. Even on gays.com there are 'body shape', 'height', 'weight', 'zodiac sign' etc. Going further, 'pubic hair', size of the famous body part. We call people who state 'No Blacks' racists, yet we ourselves state what colour and shape pubic hair must be on our partner. We say that people who write 'No Asians' narrow-minded, but we state that we want only blonde athletic guys with blue eyes. Going even further, we state that we want men, not women. Aren't we sexists, after all? What should a woman do then? Especially, a black woman? Feel hurt? We will turn off a guy who on the first date has bought cheap wine or champagne. We don't look at what is within, but what that man wears: CalvinKlein or D£G or some unpopular brand of clothes. 4). We should get to know people. We shouldn't base our judgments on what is outside, skin colour including. Yet we do that all the time. It has different forms and shapes, of course, but we want things that meet the eyes to be nice and beautiful. Maybe my ideas are peculiar, perhaps childish, naïve, perhaps I don't have a deep understanding of real relationships, but if a person wants only sex from relationships, then there is no place for experimenting and open-mindedness. But if a person is capable of love and devotion, he wouldn't state what colour of skin he prefers, intentionally or accidentally. He will try to get to know people first.

Share this comment


Link to comment
Share on other sites

Posted · Report

well all have a type of guy we like.so no i dont think its bad to stated what your looking for in someone,,,its no diffent then saying im not into chubby guys or hairy guys..

Share this comment


Link to comment
Share on other sites
Guest

Posted · Report

This article is a tad dumb imo ... saying you are not attracted to a certain race of people is not you judging them on how they act. It doesn't mean they are repulsed by the color of someones skin. Its just saying they don't find them attractive. I don't find women attractive but that doesn't mean there aren't beautiful women. I'm just not gonna fuck em or date em lol. Should women make a thread like this now saying gay men wont have sex with them xDDDD. This sounds like someones crying lol. I'm not attracted to extremely dark men or asian, chinese, korean, etc etc. Doesnt mean i hate them or think any less of them. Smh... You want what you want.

Share this comment


Link to comment
Share on other sites
Guest

Posted · Report

Is it the wrapper or the combination of outside and inside that makes someone attractive ? I think that it depends on whether you can make a connection on common interests and the like , Not everyone falls outs of GQ. It is far better to build on something special in someone than to tear down because they are not perfect or have a hang nail or what ever .............

Share this comment


Link to comment
Share on other sites
Guest

Posted · Report

Sorry but this article is stupid. It's way too over thought by someone who has been turned down a few times. It is, regardless of what the author believes a preference. And that's fine to put on there. Surely everyone is entitled to have a preference, certainly when it comes to sex.

Share this comment


Link to comment
Share on other sites
Guest

Posted · Report

As a white male who primarily dates black men I agree with your suggestion to online daters to staye what they DO want or be silent on the issue rather than what they don't. This kind of language is very hurtful. Since I dont usually come across white mens profiles I can tell you that there are black men that also state what they don't want as well. It's not just the racially privileged whites. What I don't agree with is your comment that those who have a type or preference are narrow-minded. For those of us who find their inexplicable attractions for another race (i.e., black for white or white for black) it seems like everyone has a strong opinion and makes quick judgements about us. Sometimes we cannot explain our romantic/sexual attractions nor should we have to. It took me years to come to grips with being gay and how it happened...I only found peace when I just accepted it and didn't try to rationalize its origin or force myself to change. As far as why someone might have a primary attraction to a certain ethnicity or "race" I habe had to answer that many times. After years of fumbling for the right words I have finally concluded that a black man just feels like my natural partner.

Share this comment


Link to comment
Share on other sites
Guest

Posted · Report

Excellent. Where does ruling out end? Smelly feet, interested in cricket, uncircumcised, sticky-out ears, opera-loving, concave chest, tattoos, LibDem-supporting, shorter than five feet six ... ? Why not just assume "come one come all" and then decide on the one who turns you on. You might surprise yourself?

Share this comment


Link to comment
Share on other sites
Guest

Posted · Report

Really well written. Especially I loved " The problem with rights is that when those who have been deprived of them for so long finally start to win them, they often become rather forgetful and self-righteous about who else deserves them."

Share this comment


Link to comment
Share on other sites

Similar articles

Forum discussions