The folks of the Arizona Power Exchange group invited me, a long while back, to teach a class for them.
That class is this weekend.
Please keep in mind, I am used to controversy. I am, after all, one of the very VERY few people in the BDSM / Leather Community openly discussing and teaching about Kinky play that involves, explores and embraces the utilization of race and cultural identity within a BDSM context. Teaching about “Race Play” isn’t a mainstream Kink lifestyle path. For reals.
For obvious reasons, that shit don’t fly for a lot of Kinksters. Understandably so. But the backlash I received when I first “outed” myself was so strong and carried so much emotional violence, I felt charged thereafter.
I felt charged, as a survivor of attacks against my integrity, my “Blackness”, my feminism, my very being.
I felt charged to stand back up after members of MY COMMUNITY, one I fought so hard to embrace, that some amongst my Leather Kin would reject me wholesale because they did not approve of an aspect of play I found difficult and intriguing.
I sure as hell did not spend years accepting that I WAS submissive to be slapped down by perverts for being “too fucked up.”
That is too much.
Today, I have a few rounds under my belt, I have taken my hits, and am sure I will take more.
But this morning it was a visceral shock to look at my upcoming itinerary, and to mentally prepare myself for the days I will spend in Arizona.
Arizona is a Red State. Very much so.
And not just a red state, but a red state that refused a bloody day off because it was attached to slain Civil Rights Leader, Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
And so, here I go, in the stunned jubilant afterglow of a momentous occasion in the history of…of MANKIND, yo.
Walking into a room full of strangers, with my head held high.
Um…if I can manage it.
Walking into that room of what I assume will be mostly white faces, to talk about using our differences to fuel our spiritual and sexual lives.
My ancestor’s history in this country is not something I take lightly. On a very personal level, tapping into the collective consciousness of MY PEOPLE to investigate the past is a Big Fucking Deal.
Lest I forget we don’t have a corner of suffering, only recently the folks in Arizona’s BDSM scene themselves have had a bit of a dust-up with regard to cultural issues.
Uniform fetishists know there are lines that are tough to cross. Wearing a Luftwaffe outfit might be hot for you, but slap a swastika (as appropriated from the Hindu iconography, BTW) is bound to REALLY alienate folks.
And their community is still resonating from that hit.
So, in comes the Black girl from the Ghettos of Harlem, now living in Sodom-By-The-Sea, to talk about why it is OK to tap into mankind’s darkest places, and somehow find redemption.
Is this for real? I am still shaking my head.
Can we really walk those lines without tumbling into an ideological abyss?
I’d like to quote the President Elect, Barack Hussein Obama here.
Yes, We Can.