Leather Dads vs. Kinky Boys

The Epic Clash

We are a diverse community of folks.  From the oldest, most traditional leather daddy to the youngest, most nouveau-kink puppy, we collectively possess a storehouse of knowledge, insight, and passion about queerdom, sexuality, and brotherhood.  The Leather Community of 2011 is hard to define and from my observations I’d say there are some varying schools of thought on what our community is and where we are going.  Some would even say that the L.C. is a bit divided and stagnate right now with our future uncertain.  The old keep aging and wanting to hold on to the tenets of the past and the young aren’t as numerous as some would hope and want to change things to fit with current times.  Oye, what to do…

I see 3 main groups of Leather folk:

THE OLD GUARD — Usually our eldest brothers who are rooted in leather’s glorious past, the Old Guard carries with them our origins, strict protocol, and men who witnessed and survived the AIDS epidemic.  These men grew up in a very different society where gays lived in persecution worst than any we see today and had communities that thrived and sweated underground.  They pushed for the beginnings of gay rights (a fight we are still facing) and adhere to a belief that the L.C. “just isn’t what it used to be”.

THE MODERN LEATHERMEN — Men mostly between their late 30’s to early 50’s who comprise the bulk of the L.C. with respect for the past and interest in the future.  These men are often in relationships (sometimes open ones, sometimes monogamous) and strut proudly out to the remaining outposts of leather (the bars that still stand) seeking brotherhood.

THE KINKY PUPS — Young blood with punk/goth influences who have new energy and new ideas on sexuality and what it means to be gay.  Eager and open, these boys like new materials for gear and enjoy exploring the different roles of Dom/Sub/Vers/etc.  A generation of the internet, the boys often go online to form communities and also expect society to accept homosexual relationships.

Of course there is some +/- deviation in these groups, but in general this is who I see at our bars and events.  Like any group, the L.C. has been shifting and changing over the years and I think today it’s a combination of several subgroups that have merged together (BDSM, fetish freaks, motorcycle men, leather heads, hyper masculine guys, etc.).  Some people gripe about how things are changing…others gripe about how things aren’t changing enough.  I think we should all chill out a bit.

Society is always going to need a space for the freaks.  No matter how incorporated queers become into mainstream society, we will still need a space that is for brotherhood and kink.  This space cannot be a rigid one because human behavior and development is a constantly evolving beast (sorry, Old Guard) but we can still hold on to our history and core principles through the transitions (learning the history of where we’ve been is extremely valuable and important).

And just on a personal rant, everyone needs to stop idealizing the past and longing for “what it used to be”.  We are here now, so the best thing to do is make NOW the BEST.  Yes a lot has changed…but if we truly care about this concept of a Leather Community, then the most productive thing to do is focus our energy on making things awesome now.  We are completely in control of who we are where we’re going…we shape our own destiny.

So the next time you go out to your local leather bar or event, take a good look around at the folks who are there…perhaps one the best way to help contribute to an inclusive and vibrant community is to stop focusing so much on your own interests/agendas and start caring about the interests of others.  The exchange of a smile/friendly hello/spit/ideas/desires builds up our community.

AND BOTTOM LINE: we are all here just to have a good time, yo.

Advertisements
This entry was posted in Observations/Lessons. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s