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Who’s Queer Now: Xtra to host town hall on identity

Online and live forum will discuss the terms we use and why they matter

Join Xtra June 18 from 6:30 to 8pm PST for a community town hall on the words we use and why they matter.  Credit: Xtra files

Are you gay?

Are you queer?

What words do you use to describe yourself?

What words do you use to describe our community?

Do you any of these terms make you feel left out?

Xtra columnist Kevin Dale McKeown first contemplated our community’s evolving terminology last summer, when he noticed that several of his friends felt excluded by the Pride celebrations and their use of the word queer.

The community hasn’t always called itself “queer,” he noted in a discussion group May 25. “In the beginning, there were faggots and dykes.” At some point the word gay emerged, then some lesbians sought a less male-centric term to describe the community, he said.

A breakout session within the discussion group revealed that, among 20 people present, only four prefer the term queer.

What do you prefer?

Join us June 18 for a community town hall on the words we use and why they matter.

Readers in Vancouver are invited to participate in person at the Fountainhead Pub, 1025 Davie St.

Can’t join us in person? The town hall will be streamed live simultaneously on from 6:30 to 8pm PST, so viewers can watch and participate in real time, no matter where they are.

But you don’t have to wait for the town hall. Start tweeting us now @dailyxtra or post a comment below to tell us what words you use and why. #xtraqueer

Read McKeown’s columns and more on this topic:

Toward a shared identity

Questioning the use of “queer”

Is “queer” really the best we can do?

Use of “queer” split largely by age in Vancouver

Use of “queer” varies across Canada

Use of “gay” and “queer” varies among US cities

“Are you gay? Are you queer?”: Xtra streeters

Queer Nation embraced “queer in 1990