Queer Liberation vs Assimilation: On the Need for Creativity and Critical Thinking

Q

I created Think Queerly to challenge the status quo and to elevate visibility

As a gay man and as a queer person, I do not want to be normalized. Instead, I want to be recognized and accepted for my difference as a humanizing quality.

To that end, I want to state that my podcast and publication of the same name, Think Queerly, will not stand for the assimilation of LGBTQ+ peoples. Instead, as I have expressed in the mission statement, Think Queerly supports liberation, i.e. “to improve humanity and equal rights for all”.

The value and importance of criticism

“Whereas “bitchiness” comes from a place of insecurity, critique derives from a desire to better humanity. As feminist philosopher Judith Butler explains: “I bring certain critical perspectives to what I study and speak about. ‘Critical’ does not mean destructive, but only willing to examine what we sometimes presuppose in our way of thinking, and that gets in the way of making a more livable world”.

Jeffry Iovannone

My working definition of “Queer Leadership”

Queer Leadership is not about organizing people. Instead, it’s the principle of individuals leading from their difference, their creative uniqueness, not to assimilate into the dominant culture, but to liberate and elevate those oppressed by the dominant status quo.

On the current lack of critical thought and depth across social media

I discuss my observations about social media, the cult of celebrity, and the problem with LGBTQ celebrity endorsements. I share my observations to explain why it is so important to uphold my principles to only publish critical thinkers. I am no longer interested in topics or authors who don’t fit and who are unwilling to take editorial advice — that’s the job of an editor, to make sure a submission meets all the guidelines of the publication.

Looking forward to the next decade

If we want things to change for the better, if we want to solve issues like climate change, fake news, populism, removing Trump from the White House (and locking him up), and if we want to liberate all people from oppression, prejudice, and “normalization” then we must think more critically. We can no longer support platforms that only encourage groupthink, bullying, and personal attacks. We can no longer support pandering to people who take offence to “micro-aggressions” and turn molehills into mountains.

It is time to think more queerly!

Image credit: Elvert Barnes

By Darren Stehle

Darren is a leadership coach in Toronto, Canada who helps his clients to connect and embrace their uniqueness and freely create the life they want. He writes and podcasts regularly about Queer Leadership.