Connections Between Queer and Animal Oppression
by Yi-Yi Kung and Kangs Trevens
As beings who are “othered”, there are many similarities between the denial of LGBTQ+ identities/devaluation of LGBTQ+ lives and the denial of animals’ personhoods/devaluation of their lives. On March 8, 2016, three members of DxE affinity group LGBTQ+ Animal Liberationists – Rebeca Muñiz, Cheryl Ching, and Kangs Trevens – presented at the UC Berkeley Queer Ecologies reading group on the topic. They put together a chart to highlight the variety of ways in which queer oppression and non-human animal oppression are interrelated. An image of the chart is below:
Muñiz and Trevens, together with Reilly Gardine, Sara Muñiz, and Yi-Yi Kung, presented Connected Oppression: How to be an Ally at the Bay Area DxE meetup on April 23, 2016. The presenters went over the chart, talked about why collective liberation is important, detailed microaggressions that can be experienced by LGBTQ+ people and explained how non-LGBTQ+ folks can be allies. That allyship is active, not only passively accepting those under the LGBTQ+ umbrella. This was followed by a Q&A. Being seen as "other" or "less than" is a key component in any oppression of human and non-human animals, so our activism must not only be anti-speciesist, but anti-cissexist, anti-ableist, anti-queerphobic, anti-classist, and anti-racist.