Onward to 2021
By B.B. | 01/08/2021
Whelp. We’re scarcely a week into 2021 and things have already been crazy, especially if you’re a US citizen, like myself.
I know you came here for queer media reviews or perhaps an update about the website, and we’ll get to that in a minute. As I have a platform I feel that I cannot be silent on the topics that happened in America this week and below I talk politics for several paragraphs. If that is something you’re trying to avoid for your own mental health or you didn’t come to a queer media review site for my political hot takes, no worries. Feel free to skip said political section and proceed to the “politics free” zone below.
What happened Wednesday, January 6th 2021 was terrorism and it is the exact white nationalist extremism that I and countless others in marginalized groups were afraid of happening when 45 won the 2016 election through a broken electoral college system. My thoughts on that election have evolved since I wrote about it in one of the first posts here on The Queerblr (RE: Dear America, 2016 Presidential Election) and as the time has progressed, I have become more and more angry with my own country.
There are too many people saying that “this isn’t our America” or “this isn’t who we are” or some derivative thereof. The truth is – this is exactly what America is and has always been at its core. We were founded by religious zealots who raped and pillaged the land they “found” while forcing Native Americans from their ancestral lands and homes. America was found and built on the backs of black slaves and genocide. To think otherwise is willful ignorance.
America is far, FAR, from perfect. I have never been a proud American. As soon as I was old enough to start analyzing American history and current affairs, I stopped standing for a flag because it stood for things I didn’t believe in. In my teenage years to my current adulthood, I cannot honestly say that the US flag has stood for “freedom, liberty, justice, and the pursuit of happiness,” as it was intended. To me, the flag stands for capitalism, warmongering, and racism. And the fact that Wednesday’s mob wasn’t met with more teargas, rubber bullets, or massive arrests is proof of just that. More people in my small capital city were arrested or at least taken into custody for simply not dispersing fast enough this past summer during one peaceful Black Lives Matter protest than the amount of people taken into custody the day that terror mob breached the Capitol.
America is far from perfect, like I said. As a nation we’re a mess despite knowing that the majority of America doesn’t share the same ideologies as that mob. 45 lost the popular vote in both elections he’s been apart of. The “MAGA America” is not by any means the majority of America. Voting has proved that twice over. But despite this, we still have a broken government system. We have a system that has allowed billionaires to profit exponentially during a global pandemic while the working and lower class lost jobs and struggled to make ends meet with very little help from the federal government. Or the fact that a sitting president can just roll back environmental laws at a whim, or that 45 wasn’t impeached, or that Mitch McConnel had the sole power to reject the $2000 stimulus to citizens, or that white nationalist terrorists were allowed to do what they did on January 6th with virtually no repercussions… those few examples should be proof enough that whole fucking system is broken. And sometimes, when things are that fundamentally broken, there is no fixing it. There is only scrapping it and starting over.
I don’t have the answer. I wish I had more of a positive takeaway from all of this, some glimmer of hope to pass along or ease minds. I might not have that nugget, but seeing the work being done in Georgia and electing Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff to the Senate, making the Senate an even 50/50 with Vice President Harris as the tie breaker gives me hope. Our two-party system will never fix the systemic issues, but seeing change for more progressive views is never a bad thing in my opinion. But I will always want and work for more.
We all know 2020 was a crazy year! I had a lot of hopes for The Queerblr last year but living through one of the most emotionally traumatizing years in current history with the covid-19 pandemic, steadily increasing global crisis & raging fires, systemic racism running rampant, protests… I mean… you were there. I don’t need to recap the trash fire it was for you. I was, however, really humbled today because I simply felt like I hadn’t produced enough content this year when in actuality, The Queerblr had more posts this year than all previous years combined! So, hey! We were productive! And our readership has grown substantially. So, thank you. Thank you for being a part of this small online community centered around queer media.
My hope for 2021 is to be just as productive. I have a lot of things that I’m sussing out in my personal life (struggles with my gender identity and unfulfillment in my current 9-5 professional career life, to name a few) but this site is always in the forefront of my mind. For a while this year I honestly thought about giving up on The Queerblr amidst all of my mental turmoil. I started this site because I wanted to be a resource for others, a resource like I didn’t have growing up but would have been so grateful for. I’ve thought about giving up on the site because I’ve seen so many other sites pop up in the last few years, many of which have contributors in the double digits, produce more content, engage with a much larger audience, or post on multiple websites, have YouTube channels, or Podcasts, and other mediums. I’m beyond happy to see it! Truly! The more people talking about, uplifting, and promoting queer content the better in my opinion! But I struggled with what am I bringing to the table?
After a lot of thought and reflection, I know that The Queerblr is bringing something that is more diverse than many of the review sites out there simply because we review more than just books or just movies or just one branch of the LGBTQ+ community. If it is consumable queer media, it’s fair game for review in my eyes. We have a lot of work to do to ensure that we’re representing more of the LGBTQ+ community in the media we review, but we’ll get there. I’m confident of that. And our reviews are quirky and we have a lot of fun writing them, whether we’re being critical or going full on stan mode. Are we objective 100% of the time? No. But I’m okay with it because most times we’re having fun with what we’re writing.
So, for 2021 the goal is to keep at it and to keep it fun. I had placed a lot of rules and parameters around our review format that I’m shedding this year. I tried not to review books by the same author or within the same series and I’m not implementing that restriction moving forward. This year I’m going to be all over the hype train for SJ Whitby’s Cute Mutants series! Not because I’ve been asked to or because I’m getting anything out of it — I just love the series so much that I want to share that joy I have when reading it with my readers. Because we could all use a little more joy in our lives. I promise we won’t become like the hub for the Cute Mutant fandom, but we won’t be quiet about our love of the series, either. And I want to take that enthusiasm for other series and authors, too! I know I definitely want to review more content from the Tales of Inthya series by Effie Calvin and there are several web-comics and animated series I’d like to do the same fore, too. And trust me, y’all haven’t even seen me at my nerdiest, because I have barely scratched the surface of video games reviews and I have a lot of games that I plan on reviewing and posting about for 2021, including some of my all-time favorite games!
In addition to keeping at it and having fun – I have some fun giveaway ideas that I want to do with some merch I’d love to make and giveaway or do some book or graphic novel giveaways. Someday I’ll get around to kicking off a Queerblr Podcast, too. Someday. I just need time and a co-host… That or some Queerblr Let’s Plays with some video game shenanigans. Who knows! Like I said, moving forward, the point is bringing more fun and joy to all of The Queerblr readers.
As we go into 2021, I hope that you have things that you’re looking forward to, too. I’m thankful that you’re here. I know the changing of a calendar year won’t magically fix all of the problems 2020 berated us with, but I’m optimistic that we’ll be able to help each other through our spiraling mental health hurdles and find the little joys in life again.
I’ll see you all next week for my review of Cute Mutants, Volume 2: Young, Gifted & Queer. Until then, all my love.
First name under revision. She/Her or They/Them
The Queerblr Owner, Admin, & Lead Writer
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