I think it’s really wild how any time someone on tumblr says “hey maybe don’t bully ace people” there’s always at least one person who responds “but asexuals aren’t oppressed!” as if one thing has to do with another.
Like I’m not even gonna get into the debate on whether or not asexuals face oppression. That’s not my point. It shouldn’t matter either way!
Imagine you’re a parent. Your son comes home from school crying one day because his classmates have been making fun of him for having curly hair. They tell him only freaks have curly hair, and the mean 4th grade teacher secretly has curly hair. So you go to the principal and complain.
“Principal Doe, the other 1st graders have been bullying my son for having curly hair.”
“Well, it’s not like having curly hair makes you marginalized. He should get over it.”
You’d be pretty pissed, right?
I’ve been on tumblr in some form or another since 2013. There used to be a thriving ace community on tumblr. They pretty much kept to themselves. And then, pretty suddenly (at least from the perspective of an outside observer with a number of friends in the community), we saw a rise in what was called “ace discourse.”
It flooded all of the tags asexual people had created for themselves. From what I heard and saw, every few posts in “#ace positivity”, “#ace awareness”, and “#actually asexual” was someone debating the question, “are asexual people queer?”
And yes, that was the original question. “Are asexual people queer?” not “Are asexual people LGBT?” But the consensus started to drift toward, “yeah, ace and aro* people can call themselves queer if they want.” *I include aro here, but not more generally, because for whatever reason the “discourse” at the time was largely focused specifically on asexual people.
Not long after people generally decided that yes, asexual people were welcome in the queer community, the queer community started getting pushed out. Others have talked about this too, but the rise of “queer is a slur” discourse directly correlates to queer acceptance of asexuality. People made troll blogs, started making fun of “kweers”, shifted the question to “are asexual people LGBT?”
People started attacking anyone who wrote anything other than the 4 letters. If you added Q, I, A, 2S, you were mocked. Told you were incorrect.
In a span of 5 years this site went from “not gay as in happy, but queer as in fuck you” to “queer is a slur, and if you call yourself queer you’re really just a straight person who wants attention.”
In a span of 5 years this site went from “asexuals are queer” to “asexuals aren’t queer” to “asexuals aren’t LGBT” to “asexuals are cringy” to “asexuals are perverts” to “asexuals are child predators.”
These two things aren’t isolated. The asexual community on tumblr was effectively destroyed. Queer people were dragged through the mud for associating with them. Most disgustingly, children who were just trying to discover themselves were relentlessly harassed and bullied off the site.
Stop bullying ace people.