New edition of a classic DifferenTakes article! (Download for free & visit the archive.)
Ryn Gluckman’s original 2003 article about the ways war and other forms of state violence hurt queer bodies and communities has been one of the most popular in our Ten Reasons activist tool series. It was written nearly a decade ago, as the United States embarked on wars in both Afghanistan and Iraq. In the wake of 9/11, the political culture was fraught with competing frameworks of desire for punishment through military invasion, or anti-violent reconciliation. While the electrifying public debates of the immediate descent into war have now diminished, the lasting effects of ongoing violence — within the two invaded countries, in overseas detention centers, and in United States courts, hospitals, and veterans’ homes — have grown even starker with time. Now, as LGBTQI service members, equality advocates, and anti-violence activists all approach their work in a post-Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell context, Ryn’s message about the legacy of war is more important than ever.