lunes, 13 de febrero de 2017

The ever-expanding family of LGB acronyms | MercatorNet

The ever-expanding family of LGB acronyms

The ever-expanding family of LGB acronyms

The ever-expanding family of LGB acronyms

Now we'll have to add BDSM after the Fifty Shades novels and films
Michael Cook | Feb 12 2017 | comment   

A 300-metre hill on the North Island of New Zealand, Taumatawhakatangihangakoauauotamateaturipukakapikimaungahoronukupokaiwhenuakitanatahu*, has the distinction of possessing the longest place name in the English-speaking world. It has displaced the Welsh town of Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwllllantysiliogogogoch**, the former champion.
But my hobby of collecting eccentric place names is fading in favour of the pursuit of the longest gender identity acronyms. We’re all so familiar with LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender) that we forget that not so long ago it was only LGB. According to Google’s Ngram Viewer, at some stage in 1993, the use of LGBT took off like a rocket and by 2000 was being used more than LGB.
Now LGBT itself is being displaced by LGBT+, LGBTIQ, and so on. I thought that LGBTTQQIAAP (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, transsexual, queer, questioning, intersex, asexual, ally, pansexual – 12 characters) would take the trophy, but then I discovered LGBTQQIP2SAA (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, questioning, queer, intersex, pansexual, two-spirit (2S), androgynous, asexual – 13 characters).
However, to show you what an amateur I am in the acroymn game, yesterday, on the website of Wesleyan University, an exclusive US$50,000 a year college in Connecticut, I stumbled across the 16-character acronym LGBTTQQFAGPBDSM. In its description of “themed housing”, or places on the campus where like-minded students can gather, it explains what “Open House” is:
a safe space for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Transsexual, Queer, Questioning, Flexual, Asexual, Genderf***, Polyamourous, Bondage/Disciple, Dominance/Submission, Sadism/Masochism (LGBTTQQFAGPBDSM) communities and for people of sexually or gender dissident communities. The goals of Open House include generating interest in a celebration of queer life from the social to the political to the academic. Open House works to create a Wesleyan community that appreciates the variety and vivacity of gender, sex and sexuality.
I was a bit bemused by the role played by sadists and masochists in creating a safe space for 18-year-olds away from home for the first time.
But then I have been reassured by two British marketing experts that this kind of activity has become a commercial product, thanks to the Fifty Shades of Grey novels. Writing in The Conversation they assert that “BDSM is an activity that has entered the mainstream in recent years – and commerce is never far behind popular culture”.
This week the sequel to the first film will hit the cinemas, Fifty Shades Darker. And although it is even worse than its predecessor, scoring an incredibly low 8% “fresh” rating on Rotten Tomatoes, it promises to be a commercial success. The experts also enthusiastically cite a growth in BDSM tourism in the UK and abroad.
It’s exhilarating to see the simple LGB grow up. From 3 characters to 16 in 25 years – who would ever have foreseen it? What an exciting future lies ahead for those countries where LGB has mainstreamed as LGB marriage! Every additional character is sure to sprout into new products, new trends and new relationships. In 25 years, will BDSM communities have Boy Scout troops and the non-discrimination protection that LGBT communities have today? 
Michael Cook is editor of MercatorNet.
* The summit where Tamatea, the man with the big knees, the slider, climber of mountains, the land-swallower who travelled about, played his nose flute to his loved one
** St Mary's Church in the Hollow of the White Hazel near a Rapid Whirlpool and the Church of St. Tysilio near the Red Cave
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Chastity is often derided as naïve and impossible, but the impact of its absence is devastating, argues Pat Fagan in today’s lead.

His brief but incisive article shows graphically that successful marriages are correlated with this old-fashioned virtue. “A culture of monogamy is critical to a thriving nation or a thriving culture. A culture of chastity is foundational to a culture of monogamy,” he writes. “Thus the cultivation of chastity is central to a robust nation and a robust culture.”

It’s terrific reading. Pass it on

Michael Cook

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