South Africa made its mark in the LGBTIAQ+(Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Asexual, Queer) community when it legalized sexual orientation in 1998, being the first in Africa.
However, things are not all rosy in the community as backlashes such as homophobia and non-acceptance are part of the dark cloud. I have experienced emotional homophobia, most, if not all, have experienced such homophobia. Having to hear insulting words such as stabane, moffie, mjita-sisi to mention a few. Majority of the community has used these insulting names as a reclaim of power. We have taken ownership of them, using them amongst ourselves, mocking them.
My First Physical Homophobic Attack
It was two weeks back when I experienced my first physical homophobic attack. At an annual spring festival in Braamfontein, living it up VIP style. I was dressed up in nothing but a basketball vest and sneakers, I looked good. I decided to go to the general section as that was where the party was at. As I was rushing to the front row to see DJ Tira perform, a random girl accused me of pulling her and told her boyfriend.
The boyfriend did not even ask any question as he started attacking me uttering the words” My girlfriend will not be hit by a gay dude”. I was bleeding, right next to my eye and my vest was torn. If not for my bubbly personality and dancing skills I might not have been rescued. It was unfortunate that the security who failed to protect me ended up protecting the guy.
What irks me was the fact that the homophobic attack was started by a girl. Not to say that male homophobia is justified. Someone who is as marginalized as me if not more, instead of standing together as marginalized groups, we do the opposite. This, in my opinion, makes the patriarchal system flourish. This has however not stopped me to live my true life. I am a STABANE and PROUD. I will live my pride every day of my life, for the future.