Save “The heart and soul” of San Francisco? Too little, too late.

Hola a todos. What I’m about to say, you would not likely read in one of the pro status-quo Queer publications who enjoy eating Establishment’s upper colon and who enjoy skating around topics so as not to offend anyone (think: the major gay rag in San Francisco).

I saw a headline today (28 December 2020) about a member of the San Francisco Board of Supervisors authoring a law to save, “The heart and soul” of San Francisco. I thought: Too little, too late. You’re only about 20 years too late. Where have you been? I did not click on the article to read it because I knew I would be annoyed. Just like I no longer click on any articles with “LGBTQ” RSTUVWXYZ++++++ in the title either. If they can’t say the word Queer, fuck them! That’s how I feel about it. By the time you get through all those letters, the parade is over! (as Lea DeLaria says). If they can’t use the word Queer then I have no interest in reading it. At this point in time, I’ve had it up to here with the corporatist, conformist, heteronormative, revisionist history “LGBTQ”RSTUVWXYZ++++++++++ rubbish that is saturated all over the internet and elsewhere. As I have said umpteen times, lesbians as a group did not lead the Gay Rights Movement. Therefore, the “L” should not be in first place. Who moved the “L” to first place? I suspect lesbians did in order to hijack our Movement to give themselves attention without having done most of the work. Having the “L” first is revisionist history. Gay guys and Drag Queens led the movement and most of the Drag Queens were guys who had no interest in changing their gender. They just enjoyed making fun of some females and dressing like them as an art form. The original acronym was GLBTQ. Why did some busy-body change that? The official acronym today is this drivel. How many more letters are they going to add to that string of letters mess?

Being a decades-long resident of San Francisco, I can safely say that the “heart and soul” of this City is long gone. It’s been gone for some time. When the elitist phone-zombies known as the Tech Industrial Complex invaded and ruined the City (receiving generous corporate welfare through tax breaks), much of the “heart and soul” of San Francisco was forced out/evicted to The City of Oakland across the Bay years ago — that’s where many from the Old City moved to — by the Real Estate Industrial Complex and their corrupt liars (do those basura ever tell the truth about anything when selling a property?) The “heart and soul” of the Old City of San Francisco was a very activist, proudly-radical, proudly Queer and non-conformist City. Well, today’s San Francisco is the opposite of that. Compared to the Old City, activism is dead here today. This City has become the opposite of what it used to be especially since the techie basura moved in. I rarely ever see any of the long-term residents from the Old City that I used to see. And most people — especially in the conservative Castro — walking around with their conformist and ultra-conservative black and grey clothing look like they’re either headed to a funeral or just returned from one.

Therefore, there is no “heart and soul” to save here. Some would say things started their downward path in San Francisco with what was called “The City’s War on Fun” when Halloween in The Castro was cancelled. Or when The Castro (former Gay Mecca) was sanitised by the conservative merchants and conservative homeowner basura to make the neighbourhood heteronormative “family-friendly” (welcome the babies and breeders) — I detest the term “family-friendly” — and suitable for the breeders/straights moving in in droves with their plethora of black baby strollers and screaming babies. Of course the breeders were not required to move to The Castro. But the fact is: Breeders want to own the entire world. They did not want Queers to have this small little enclave. And the breeders could have moved to any area of The City (such as The Marina, North Beach, Pacific Heights, Russian Hill, The Avenues, The Sunset, Cow Hollow, South Beach, as some examples), but they were hell-bent on moving to Castro/Upper Market to change a Queer area to the way they wanted it: To make it mostly straight, as it is today, despite the over-saturation of Rainbow Flags which are up for deceiving tourists and for historical purposes only. Some people would say the “heart and soul” was lost when corporate “Pride” became corporate and lost itself. Others might say that things went south during the days when the so-called Queer “community” seemed to flip out and went conservative literally overnight and were whinging about “radical” supervisor Chris Daly dropping F-bombs at the Board of Supervisor meetings. The guy used colourful language, so what? I think we’re all adults here. He didn’t sound like the typical corporatist or your mundane cookie-cutter politician. When did Queers become such conservative, wet doilies about outspoken language that they themselves use on occasion? Others might say things went south when Queers were told to be like the straights and “assimilate” the night that Gay Marriage became legal. (roll eyes) Ugh. And Queers are wearing their wedding rings on the same finger as the breeders so they (Queers) can be mistaken for being straight. That’s because the image of a left hand wedding ring on one’s fourth finger has been firmly brainwashed into the public’s mind for generations as that of a straight couple. Why would Queers want to be mistaken for straight? Is that what they want? Do I detect some internalised homophobia that one wants to be perceived as straight, like a breeder? Things have been dead ever since. There was a brief movement awhile back to Queer The Castro. That’s terribly ironic. Well that tells you how much things had changed in the wrong direction that a group felt a need to try to make the former Gay Mecca a gay area again. Unfortunately it didn’t work because the conservatives had Disneyfied The Castro and made it the way it is today (mostly straight) deliberately so. It was not by accident. Yet the best financial times for the merchants, restaurants and Real Estate Industrial Complex was when The Castro was a Gay Mecca. Gay guys were their main customers. In that sense, the merchants deserve what they get because they’re directly responsible for the state of things today in The Castro. Others would say that class-warfare played a role because of the many homeless (youth) Queers who hung out in The Castro. But they were not welcome here by the elitist and conservative homeowner Queers because they were not of the proper income bracket. Others would say that the night that Gay Marriage became legal and around that time that obnoxious (gay?) sports bar — run by a conservative closet case and a lesbian — opened on Market Street to cater to breeders and macho, heteronormative Mr Jock Bro gay guys trying to “look and act straight.” Someone wrote when that bar opened, “The Gay Rights Movement ends at this bar.” Yes, absolutely. I think it started out as a gay sports bar, but then was infiltrated by straights (“him and her”) and closeted gay guys. Gay Marriage has completely backfired and it was the end of the Movement when Queers were ordered to “assimilate” with the straights. Frankly, I was as “assimilated” with the breeders as I cared to be. I don’t put the breeders and their dysfunctional relationships — with their high divorce rate — up on any pedestal as models of how to live my life. But when the dictate to “assimilate” was given, some gay guys went back in the closet and started dating chicks to, “blend in with the breeders to ‘assimilate’.” It didn’t matter that they had no genuine interest in females. They merely went through the motions pretending to “be straight” with their internalised homophobic that they apparently never worked completely through during our Movement. (Some of the gay guys from the gym did this as mi amigo/my friend observed at his gym; he heard one guy from his former gym tell another closet cases at his new gym, “my girl and I are trying to get pregnant.” It was all about being straight, having come from the gay gym, as it was known). These closeted guys wanted to be like the many new-arrival (homophobic?) techie straight guys they saw on Market Street and in The Castro walking around holding the hands of their chick and or making out with their girl on the sidewalk or at street corners and putting on a matinée for everyone to see to proudly proclaim, “I’m straight (unspoken: and “normal….I’m not a faggot.”). Yes, the once proudly radical Castro was indeed gone to the delight of the anti-gay conservatives. The neighbourhood and the Queer so-called “Community” had done a 180. Some people would likely say that all of this and more was the death of the “heart and soul” of San Francisco.

I never would have believed this could happen to The Gay Mecca that I moved to when I moved here during the height of the Gay Rights Movement, but it most assuredly has. I’m not easily surprised by much of anything these days, but I remember feeling stunned when I saw the first “him and her” make-out session under the large Rainbow Flag in Harvey Milk Plaza, of all places! I had never seen breeders make-out there. Ever. It just wasn’t done. They seemed to know not to do that there under the Rainbow Flag. Until then. Was it a thrill for them to put their straight sexuality on display beneath a Rainbow Flag? (Seems so since we’ve seen this on other occasions as well; the straights run to the nearest Rainbow Flag to make-out). I suspect Harvey was “rolling in his grave” as the expression goes. It was that night that I knew things were changing around here and the Gay Mecca was fading away. Quite depressing really. And some/many of the new breeder arrivals are quite anti-Queer. Why would homophobes deliberately choose to move here? Because they have an agenda? It was seem so, just like they had/have an agenda in Chelsea in Manhattan. Related: His shirt said, “Fuck you, Homo.” Others would say that the way that tech has ruined the City — while contributing little or nothing to the City other than traffic congestion, sky-high inflated housing costs and cost of living, and an over-crowded population — was the death of this City’s “heart and soul.” I agree with that as well.

Every time The Castro is mentioned or written about these days, it’s referred to as “vibrant.” Would they call a cemetery vibrant too? Vibrant couldn’t be farther from the reality in describing today’s Castro. It’s time someone said it: The Castro today is an empty shell of its former self. The Castro is dead, even before the COVID-19 pandemic arrived. There’s nothing here. The culture that was here is gone. It moved to Oakland and elsewhere. Some nights it’s like a war zone in The Castro. And it will end up exactly like The Haight/Ashbury: A long, forgotten neighbourhood. And it’s not just San Francisco. Over in Marin County, Mill Valley was a very liberal, hippy area. The same for Sausalito. Not today. The same for other gay areas, such as West Hollywood. See here.

Our experience with these techies has been awful. With few exceptions, we’ve seen them bully gay guys, they have disrespected our (ethnic) neighourhood cultures, they make anti-Queer remarks in The Castro and Upper Market, they enjoy shoving their breeder sexuality in our Queer faces by making out on street corners and constantly holding hands, “him and her.”

All this relates to the constant year-after-year bullying from straight people to gay guys and telling Queers to “take it (Queer affection) back to The Castro” or “do that in your own neighbourhood.” Well, it’s risky to “do that” in our own neighbourhood now because our neighourhood has been overrun by breeders. That’s why we complain about the straight hand-holding and straight make-out sessions in our (former) gay area. It’s not that we hate straights. It’s the hypocrisy of them shoving their breeder sexuality in our Queer faces in our own neighbourhood, or what was once our neighbourhood until they decided they wanted our neighourhood too. The breeders are never satisfied. They want it all. They want to own the entire world. If I were straight, I would not go into any Queer area and shove my straight sexuality into the face of any Queer person. I would feel that to be very disrespect to their Queer area. Instead, I would feel as a guest and respect their little area since it’s all that they have. The only space that Queers have for feeling completely safe and that they can openly express themselves and their Queer sexuality is in that area. As breeders do all over the world. They can make out and hold hands anywhere. Queers cannot for fear of being harassed or beat up, or killed. I have a straight friend who does not understand why straights go into The Castro and put on a straight make-out show for Queers. Or does that have something to do with religion and the breeders are trying to proselytize their anti-Queer religious views in front of gay guys? He finds that extremely disrespectful as do I.

Why the Queers would abandon their neighbourhoods all over the US is beyond me. There was no place on Earth like them. The conservatives in San Francisco were telling Queers around here “it’s time to grow up.” Oh fuck off! Do we understand each other, Mr/Ms Conservative. Fuck off! “It’s time to grow up” translates as follows: “Become a stale, walking dead conservative like myself who hates any fun that someone might have. And who hates on anyone who is not like myself.” And unfortunately, many Queers got brainwashed with conservative thinking from the Real Estate Industrial Complex, from conservative homeowners who live under the illusion that they have “special rights” just because they own some old moldy home, and also from the heteronormative and revisionist history “LGBTQ” RSTUVWXYZ++++++ Corporatist Industrial Complex and others. So, to “blend in” with the straights, Queers started “looking” and “acting” straight and went back in the closet — that’s the bottom line — and fell for the conservative lie that “there is no longer a need for gay areas and that’s because “gay is now mainstream and gays can live anywhere” as hate-crimes and violence against Queers soar worldwide. Queers can’t “live anywhere” even in the unhealthy closet. The conservatives have never liked gay areas of cities to begin with.

The Queers have no idea what they had, until after it was over. And that’s the way all Movements have been. Chau.—el barrio rosa