Beyond the Stepford Queers


Stepford Queers march in lockstep with the media’s image of homosexuals. Not that there’s anything wrong with that, but it’s just one of many ways to be queer today.

For some time, the old binary of gay and straight has been breaking down. Now the predictable parade of homo personae—drag queen, leather man, lipstick lesbian, etc.—is giving way to a vast procession of personalized identities. Your body, your gender, and your orientation can now be constructed to express your truest sense of self. And no matter how uncanny that vision may seem, the Internet makes it possible to find others with the same idea, ready to connect and create a community.

Even if you don’t consider yourself a gender radical, this spirit of freedom has probably influenced your persona. Chances are that you are who you are in a much more authentic way because of it. This issue is an attempt to prove that point by showcasing some prophetic neo-queer configurations.

Elizabeth Cline explores the brave new world of transmales, a term for female-bodied folks who identify with masculinity in various ways. Christopher Stahl writes about the rough sport of rugby as a proving ground for his own gay identity. Richard Goldstein describes his funky queer marriage in order to dispel the myth that matrimony inevitably leads to conformity. And Wayne Hoffman examines the history of that great matrix for gay identity, Christopher Street.

It’s the Voice‘s 25th Queer Issue. We hope you’ll check out Charles McNulty and Matthew Phillp’s selection of awesome pieces from our archives. And we invite you to enjoy this special section, whether you’re a furry, a poly (for polyamorous), a proud eunuch, a beautiful boi, a bear-baiting cub, or none of the above. Whatever your gender—if you even have one: Be here, be queer, and never get used to it.