The gay community is one of the most discriminated and marginalised communities in India, hence it has become clear to me why some gay people are taking a categorical stand against Islamophobia. They understand the feeling of being outcasted and ignored which is why they have come in support of other minorities. But it is also not justified to generalise the whole Hindu or brahmin communities as anti-gay or homophobic. I have seen a trend in the community to follow liberal and secular ideologies which are actually two pre-requisites for building an equal society. But, I believe what we are following is far away from liberalism and secularism. We have been regressive liberals and pseudo seculars.
True liberalism and secularism allow all kinds of constructive and harmless thoughts and opinions to co-exist. Secularism means being un-partial and unbiased towards all religions.
Whether you like it or not India still remains a Hindu dominated country and if you colour all brahmins as cruel, homophobic and responsible for everything wrong in India, you are making a mistake. I don’t believe all brahmins are homophobic, in fact, I am sure some are gay themselves. When one community or just loud members of one community speak against another community, they send a clear message that there is no feeling of brotherhood or integrity between these two groups. So, all the efforts of integrity and acceptance fail. For example, heterosexual brahmins who read about these anti-Hindu and anti-brahmin placards in pride parades start developing hatred for the entire gay community.
It has been 9 months since decriminalisation of homosexuality and a lot of Hindu saints have come in support of the gay community. On the other hand, when we talk about homophobic ones who will remain attached to their backward thoughts, we have to realize that the Hindu homophobes are not necessarily advocating our death or murder.
Whether you ask a political pundit or do your own research, you will find that both the major national parties don’t really care about the gay community. And the only reason behind this is that there aren’t many gay people to contribute to the vote share. Let the gay community come out of the closet in large numbers, let them make their presence felt and you would see the magic. By the next elections, if the gay community is able to achieve visual demographic representation of just 1 percent, not just the BJP or Congress but even Owaisi from Hyderabad would ask for votes from gay Muslims. If the total percentage went up to 3-4 %, I believe we would even see parties like Samajwadi Party, Bahujan Samaj party fighting for gay rights in parliament.
The simple answer would be to come out of the closet, put your real name on fake Facebook accounts. But in reality, how do we get gays out of the closet?
For the above phenomena to happen we have to develop a society which is open, accepting of the concept of homosexuality, educated about sexual orientation, and willing to build a connection with people different from themselves. You cannot expect villagers or uneducated people to become totally comfortable with us overnight. It requires time, good relations and communication with people. It requires love.
If you are a regressive liberal and pseudo secular you can just complain and cry for the next five years, but if you are an optimist like me you can go online or to the parliament or the office of your MP to register your demands for more rights. Show them that you exist and they need your votes in 2024. No party in India ignores voters especially when it comes to making promises.