The Challenge of Ethnicity and LGBTQ Identity

Brian Navarro (bio) points out the additional challenge of ethnicity for some LGBTQ youth.

I think there have been some changes in regards to maybe a normalization of different types of sexuality and also just in regards to gender variant type of folks, but I think the misnomer is that just because we might see some characters on TV, whether it's Will & Grace or even Modern Family, I think that it might be different for people of color who don't have those same type of models in the media. Also where there might be some kind of dynamic where that individual must choose between their gender expression or their sexual orientation, versus their ethnicity and culture, meaning, "Maybe I have to choose if I'm going to be gay or Latino, or African American and Latino."

And it's difficult to be both or really coming to terms. How do you occupy both spheres of that culture, ethnicity, race, gender, sexuality?

I don't want to say that white youth have it easier. No, I don't think so. I'm going to say at times, maybe, because we have those models in media, the Will & Grace and stuff like that. It's also another added layer of what they might have to face because I think while that might be a representation, or, yeah really a representation, or a model for that kind of individual, whether it's sexual identity, or even for transgender, that it's very narrow. It doesn't really allow space for that individual to be more than that or other than that.

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Excerpted from an interview at CBITS Summit 2013 in Santa Monica, CA.


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