Alex Blaze

Oprah loves Gayle, but not like that

Filed By Alex Blaze | December 08, 2010 5:00 PM | comments

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This clip of an interview with Oprah was interesting to me after reading Yasmin Nair's post on Kate & Allie, and, more broadly, about our inability to accept the existence of non-sexual but loving adult friendships.

Why can't people just accept that two adult women are really close friends and nothing else? Does every loving relationship need to be sexual for it to be legible in our culture because we don't see any reason people would want to love each other? Or do people always assume that there's something sexual to love, any sort of love, and it's people who say that there isn't anything sexual in their relationships who are avoiding the truth because of their own sex-phobia?


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Well, Freud would probably be in the second camp.

I think, based on my own assumptions (which Yasmin Nair's post forced me to examine, because I've been guilty of this, too), it's the idea that a romantic relationship without sex can't be satisfying. And yes, that's a statement that would probably piss off a lot of asexuals. But I think it's an assumption that the LGBT movement operates under, because we've sort of been conditioned to care a lot about sex.

Yeah, this adolescent need to find a shameful secret in order to expose the powerful needs to stop.
It's a friendship.
And none of our business.
We need to give them that.

I've found this to be particularly the case in American culture. Friendship outside of childhood friendships really do come off frigid compared to someone who's raised himself in say, Spain or Latin America.

Then again, it's also an issue of how uprooted children are from the beginning. In the U.S., people move all the time. Schools have different classes with different sets of students-- in Latin America, it's the same class group for all "periods", forming a bond among the students, a sense of belonging instead of switching friends and acquaintances like underwear.

If the new standard is for two women to be extremely close and never marry & NOT be lesbians, we're going to have to rethink all of the lesbian history from pre-1920.

What, are you saying that we're culpable here? Innocent little us?

Why is Winfrey even commenting about this? If she's not involved in a lesbian relationship why the need to mention it?

I don't think it's fair to force Oprah onto the Isle of Lesbos if that's not where she lives, but I also think it's a little glib of her to say "why would I hide it, that's not the way I live my life." Until she's actually been in that situation, it's flip to say not being out is the same as being somehow 'untruthful in Oprah Land.' Not the same thing, my dear multi-billionairess.

And I agree with Bil's statement that waay too much queer history has been/is still covered up in the name of 'friendship' to take all same-sex friendships at face value within the context of such an ever-present homophobic society. When men can walk hand-in-hand and no and no one gives them stink eye, then I'll believe 'friendship' without a second thought. It's a small price to pay for all the other heterosexual privilege they get.

It wasn't all lesbian history in the first place. Reading modern sexuality back into any historical narrative is as wrong as reading other modern sensibilities into history.

The error might make for a more compelling read, but it's turning history into a novel. And there's already more than enough fiction out there masquerading as fact.

Here's the scoop:

1. Oprah and Gayle are lesbians.

2. Oprah and Stedman are also lesbians.

3. That means Stedman is a FTM transexual.

4. Stedman is the one who has us all fooled.