Queer picknicsunday!

Oslo Queer invites you all to a picknick  free from sexism, racism, homophobia and transfobia.

The picknick will be at the Island Langøya in Oslo fjord on sunday at 2pm-18pm. The Island is accessible for wheelchairs and buggies. The ferry depatures from Vippetangen hourly, so meet up at the ferryport 1.30pm.
Bring your own food and drink, swimwear and blankets, and outdoor games if you have any.

P.s- if it is heavy rain all day, the picknick is likely to be canceled, but check the Facebook event in the morning.

How to get to the boat

Ruter information about the boat

This is what NRK and Aftenposten missed

After Solveig Horne left the Pride House opening, with the mainstream media tagging along to get the "what are you feeling now"-interview,  the next person was invited up on stage for her predefined portion of the prgram: Queer intro. 
The ten minutes which followed changed the whole event. From beeing an awkward display of lack of solidarity, to quite the opposite. I've heard claims that this speech justified the fact that Horne was invited. Because she was critized. I don't agree. The speech, while adressing the issues surrounding the invite, did not focus on Horne or FRP.  It's focus was why, if queering your understaning of the world, the invite should not have happened.

The fact that the mainstream press left before this, makes it quite obvious that their reporting in this case leaves something to be desired. To leave a political event because you've gotten the material you need to fit your angle, is irresponsible. Irresponsibe because you run the risk of printing news which is nothing more than scandal journalism.

But now I will stop rambling, and leave the  rest of this blogpost to, as I see it, the real star of the Pride House opening: Katrina Roen


EuroPride Opening Ceremony Presentation
Oslo, 20th June, 2014
Queer Intro

The point of queer ways of thinking is to open up new possibilities: that is, possibilities that other approaches to sexuality, gender, and identity do not. Queer academic work can be traced back to the early 1990’s involving theorists such as Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick, Teresa de Lauretis, Judith Butler, Judith/Jack Halberstam …
Queer: An umbrella term
In popular usage, queer is often treated as an umbrella term. It gets used to bring together LGBTI … people into an alliance. This is what the Norwegian word ‘skeiv’ also does. But queer – in terms of queer theory – does a lot more than this. It is not just an umbrella term. It is not supposed to be just another way of categorizing people according to sexuality and gender.
Queer: A critique of norms
The point of queer theory is to critique norms. We can see how this works if we use queer as a verb, rather than an adjective. To queer: to queer the way we understand sexuality and gender; to queer norms. Here, to queer means to challenge, to question.
Queering is about DOING something, not just about BEING something. We can all DO queer: we can all present queer challenges. We can all queer the way we see the world and the way others see us – and this creates breathing room for a diverse range of people.
Some of us do queer in the way we are in our bodies. Some of us do queer in the way we love others. Some of us do queer in the way we speak about others. Doing queer can mean making an in-your-face challenge to norms, or it can mean making subtle shifts in your language, and gently offering ideas that help other people to see the effect of normative assumptions.
Everyone can choose to QUEER:
For example: When you enroll your child in kindergarten, do you enroll your child as a girl, or boy, or as a child? Does the kindergarten need to categorise your child according to binary sex?
Queer allows us question that which is usually taken for granted, and to see ourselves differently in relation to others.
Queer allows us to question existing power relations. We can, for example, question the power relations that are built into the assumption that being out and proud is what counts. Being out and proud may only be possible in the context of particular privileges (middle class privilege, specific cultural location).
Queering identity
The point of queer theory is not only to queer gender and sexuality, but to queer identity itself. In the late 20th century, it became typical for people to use identity categories to try and describe sexuality and gender: terms like man, woman, transsexual, transgender, gay, straight, bisexual, intersex etc. Queer theory helps us to see that these categories themselves can have very normative effects: many people are excluded by these categories. The categories do not work well across cultures. The attempts to define the categories leads to divisions that do not help our efforts to work together.
It is not unusual for the high-profile successes to privilege a normative white able-bodied middle class gay man, and not necessarily work in favour of people who belong to multiple minorities. The concept of queer is used to challenge these normative ways of thinking about identity. Instead, the idea is to understand identity as multiple and fluid: we do not simply belong to individual categories, we’re not fixed into these unitary positions for our whole lives. Such a simple way of thinking about identity misrepresents all human beings.
Queering gender & sexuality
The point of queer theory is heavily focused on queering sexuality and gender: questioning the assumptions we have about sexuality and challenging us to understand sexuality differently; bringing the categories man & woman into question, challenging binary-sex norms.
Let’s try to think differently about relationships, not reproduce the (normative) relationships that we see around us and try to ‘fit in’ with them. The harder we try to ‘fit in’, the more we will be excluding others. This exclusion is the effect of homonormativity.
Homonormative ways of thinking lead to:
  • some gay and lesbian people claiming the same rights as heterosexual people:
  • Lesbian & gay privilege: Getting funding for ‘LGBT’ organisations that mostly work for white lesbian and gay people and mostly do not represent the more diverse and disadvantaged spectrum of bi*, trans*, and inter* people, queers of colour, and queers with disabilities.
  • Strategic Alliances that work for some: Inviting into a forum like this, spokespeople who belong to conservative parties with agendas that do nothing to celebrate diversity. Watering-down our sexuality politics to make it acceptable to people who are basically homophobic but may be interested in winning lesbian and gay votes.
Arguably, homonormative ways of thinking do lead to change – but this is change at the expense of those who are marginalized.
Queer ways of thinking lead to:
  • fundamental changes in understanding, and a reworking of power relations across diverse groups of people:
  • Celebrating difference: Forming groups that are organized to include, respect, and celebrate diversity rather than aspiring to sameness.
  • Challenging power imbalances: Noticing how some people are privileged by homonormative activism, while others are marginalized.
  • Working across diversity to bring about political change: Not giving in and accepting political decisions that are good for a privileged gay few but leave the more diverse queer spectrum out in the cold.
The point is to work across difference, to value difference, to see difference as a strength. Queer prompts us to think about how we can work across difference and develop a more inclusive politics. It is worth developing a politics that turns norms on their head, rather than just producing another set of norms.

Katrina Roen
Professor in Cultural & Community Psychology,
University of Oslo, Norway

Stå opp for dere selv og alle oss andre!

En aktivists refleksjoner i etterkant av protestene mot Solveig Horne.

Etter å ha lest mediedekningen og deltatt i flere av diskusjonene både før og etter Solveig Hornes åpning av Euro Pride, har jeg kjent et økende behov for å tydeliggjøre vår posisjon og tanker bak protesten. I tillegg vil jeg benytte anledningen til å fylle ut og rette opp i medias ensidige vinkling, og ta et aldri så lite oppgjør med LLH.

Jeg vil først rette oppmerksomheten deres mot Aftenpostens dekning av saken. I følge Aftenposten var det kun 15 demostranter som reiste seg opp og viste sin avsky for Horne. Dette stemmer ikke. I forkant av åpningen delte vi ut over 40 plakater til folk som gladelig ville reise seg opp og holde opp et sitat av Horne. I tillegg hadde noen av de fremmøtte med egne plakater. På facebook-eventen "Ingen rasister i vår parade" hadde over 50 personer sagt at de ville delta på markeringen.Vi var med andre ord over dobbelt så mange enn det Aftenposten påstår.

Aftenpostens dekning av saken kan dessuten sies å være partisk, ettersom alle andre utenom aktivistene fra Oslo Queer ble avbildet og sitert med mer enn én setning. Aftenposten skrev ikke mer om saken enn at Oslo Queer var mot at Horne skulle åpne Pride House. Derimot fikk leder i Skeiv Ungdom, Line Halvorsrud og leder for LLH OA, Hans Sikkeland både mer spalteplass og bilde. Jeg vil derfor gi dere en muligheten til å lese noe av det som ikke ble sitert fra oss.

For det første synes vi det var viktig å protestere mot Hornes deltagelse på Pride House fordi hun selv som minister har kommet med uttalelser som er både rasistisk, homofobisk og transfobisk. I tillegg representerer hun et parti som ikke har noen likestillingspolitikk, som mener at det er diskriminerende å gi organisasjoner som jobber for minoriteter statsstøtte, som vil fjerne homofili fra likestillingsloven og legge ned likestillingsombudet.

Å invitere Horne til å åpne Pride House er ikke bare rosavasking av FRP, men signaliserer i tillegg at rasisme og transfobi ikke tas på alvor av arrangørene, det vil si LLH. LLH skal i teorien være en organisasjon for alle innenfor lhbt-spekteret, men i lys av Hornes invitasjon og rasisme-debatten som fulgte dagen etter åpningen er det klart at LLH ikke tar protestene alvorlig nok. Dette tydeliggjøres ikke minst av LLHs leder Bård Nylund som i sosiale medier ikke bare har sagt seg enige i argumenter mot både protesten og kronikken "Derfor er det ikke morstomt, Queentastic" (publisert på Blikk sin nettside), men også ved at Nyund valgte å ikke prioritere Skeiv Verdens debatt om rasisme i skeive miljøer.

Både LLHs opptreden og uttalelser er bekymringsverdige, og vitner om mangel på ydmykhet og ansvarsløshet. At en leder for en så viktig organisasjon uttrykker seg arogant og nedlatende på sosiale medier om kritikken som rettes mot den organisasjonen han representerer, gjør han på ingen måte bedre enn Horne. At ikke flere innad i LLHs organisasjon reagerer på dette er skammelig. Jeg vil derfor oppfordre de av dere som fortsatt har vettet i behold til å bruke stemmen deres og stå opp for dere selv og alle oss andre!

"Who here has not posted something on social media they'd care to take back?"

Then the comidian leading the event proceeds to read some of his old tweets which would get him into a whole lot of trouble if he was to end up in public office. Something about hating babies, something else about having sex with himself.
The conclusion? Welcomme Solveig Horne!

My conclusion is quite different. I hold my self accountable for what I post on social media. As in any other kind of public space. I do not accept the premiss that social media is some alternate dimension, where the lives we lead are silly little riddles and innocent comments. And I do not accept the premiss that a comedian tweeting about hating kids are in any way comparable to a politician tweeting homofobic comments.

Yes people are allowed to change their minds. People are allowed to mature. But when maturing means to learn how to be offensive and get away with it, I don't really see the difference.

This is Hornes homofairytale-tweet revised for the 2013 public. No appology, no change of heart, just other words.

Interwiev with Horne 16.10.2013,
– Jeg stilte bare et spørsmål med bakgrunn i en debatt som handlet om noen nye eventyrbøker som skulle skrives for barnehagebarn, sier Solveig Horne selv om meldingen.

På spørsmål om hun har kommet frem til et svar på sitt eget spørsmål i løpet av de tre årene som er gått, svarer Horne:
– Dette er en debatt som vi kanskje bør tørre å ta alle sammen, og så må det være opp til barnehager og foreldre å bestemme når de vil begynne å lære barn om annen seksualitet.

Den ferske statsråden legger til at hun ikke på noen måte angrer på å ha stilt spørsmålet.
– Kan du forklare hva som er mer problematisk ved homofil kjærlighet enn heterofil kjærlighet, siden du mener dette er verdt en debatt?
– Det burde gå an å kunne diskutere begge deler. Dette må være opp til foreldrene i samarbeid med barnehagene, svarer Horne.


Ingen rasister i vår parade!

I anledning Euro Pride skal Solveig Horne åpne Pride House fredag 20. juni på Litteraturhuset. At LLH velger å la en person som klart og tydelig har ytret seg både rasistisk, homofobisk og transfobisk skal få tale på et arrangement som står for inkludering og mot all diskriminering er ikke bare absurd, det er kritikkverdig. Vi ønsker derfor å invitere alle til en stille protest under åpningen av Pride House i morgen.

Ta med plakater med utsagn hentet fra Horne selv og/eller partiet hun representerer (Frp). Ta en titt på hennes twitter-konto og intervjuer eller skriv hvorfor du ikke synes Horne bør åpne Pride House. Vi vil også legge ut ulike forslag til "slagord" her på eventen.

Spre budskapet til venner og kjente! Bli også med på sms-aksjonen for å få med så mange som mulig. Send sms'en:

"Hei! I morgen åpnes Euro Pride med bla Solveig Horne. Det synes vi er mildt sagt feil og inviterer derfor alle til en stille protest fredag 20. juni kl 19 på Litteraturhuset. Sjekk facebook-eventen "Ingen rasister i vår parade!" eller Oslo Queer-bloggen for mer info."

Sammen er vi sterke, møt opp og vis at det Horne og hennes parti står for ikke hører hjemme noen plass, hvert fall ikke under Euro Pride!