On its website, BET has a huge feature spotlighting issues of lgbts of color.
This feature spotlights 36 prominent lgbts of color including:
Comedian Wanda Sykes
Former Palm Spring Mayor Ron Oden
Professor, author, and social activist Angela Davis
Oscar nominated director Lee Daniels
The webpage also refutes - in very short fashion - 12 myths about the lgbt community including such questions as:
- Is being gay simply about sex,
- Can people change their sexual orientation
- Do gays "recruit?"
In addition, BET also showcases 10 films dealing with gay issues and spotlights entertainers who have shown support for the lgbt community.
What BET is doing is monumental. It is a HUGE step because young lgbts of color are given potential role models. Also, BET is moving the conversation regarding lgbts of color from the shadows of the black community to the forefront, where it should be. It gives lgbts of color a chance to jump in the conversation rather than simply being talked about - which is nice, for a change.
And I seriously doubt that you will be hearing any pushback from folks like Peter LaBarbera and organizations like the Family Research Council talking about "balance" and "showing the other side of the argument."
You see one thing that people have overlooked when it comes to talking about the lgbt community of color is the fact that the religious right are deathly afraid of entering into any conflict with us. Oh sure they play up the gay vs. black conflict as sort of a "divide and conquer thing," but they don't want to directly confront us lgbts of color because they are afraid of being seen as racist.
It's in their best interest to keep the black and gay community angry and divided. However, with this spotlight, BET demonstrates that both communities need to get over their differences because they have more in common than realized.