Let’s just get one thing out of the way — gay black families exist.
The cultural image of the happy gay couple calls to mind a picture of two 30-something handsome-ish white guys wearing promise rings and pastel short sleeved dress shirts with complementing colours, doesn’t it? With portrayals of gay families in daily life, advertising, and the media taking more prominence there is still very little racial and cultural diversity being shown
From ads for Amazon’s Kindle eReader to Canada’s first gay married couple to the recent TV series The New Normal the straight world has been slowly waking up to the fact that gay families do in fact exist, with the caveat that they are all white.
Gay dads Kaleb and Kordale are in a loving, stable relationship that has produced three adorable children. They dress well and take care of themselves and are both smokin’ hot. Oh, and they’re black.
They’ve been Instagramming snippets of their daily lives like this:
“Being fathers is getting our daughters up at 5:30 am making breakfast getting them dressed for school and putting them on the bus by 6:30 . This is a typical day in our household . It’s not easy but we enjoy every moment and eveny minute of #fatherhood .
#proudfathers #blackfathers #prouddads #gaydads”
A morning routine that involves combing your kid’s hair and getting them on the bus is so utterly and completely normal to any family, whether they be gay, straight, black, white, or any colour under the sun. The noteworthiness of this normal scene, due in large part to the monocultural portrayal of gays in mass media, unfortunately led to some very ignorant comments around Twitter that were directed at this family.
Some black people thought you couldn’t be black and gay and a father. Some gay people thought gay fathers couldn’t be black. People didn’t understand how this family existed, and worst of all that this family is not at all unique.
I will say, though, that any comments Twitter made about the world’s need for more fit kickboxing hottie couples with Prison Break tattoos are entirely seconded by this author, but that is beside the point.
Gay people have come a long way, and one unfortunate side effect of out long civil rights struggle has been the white-washing of our culture to make us more palatable to the rest of the world. With all the success we’ve had breaking into mainstream advertising and media we have to try harder to show the full spectrum of the rainbow that gay people come in.
For every upper middle class white gay couple with perfectly coiffed hair that makes it into an Ikea ad there are a thousand more real couples of every race, colour, and creed who aren’t being represented. In fact, almost a quarter of gay couples are interracial, something that isn’t reflected much in both gay and straight media.
Take a look at more excerpts from Kaleb and Kordale’s Instagram and think of this real life new-normal-modern-family the next time they aren’t represented in movies and television. For all the fighting we’ve had to do to be recognized as real families we can’t forget that real families come in every colour.