Femme Friday – Goodbye, Urvashi. Goodbye, Beloved.

To my knowledge, Urvashi Vaid didn’t identify as femme, so that’s not what this Femme Friday is about. It’s about how Urvashi loved all queers so much that she did the millions of utterly astounding things that she did for us – and for the world — including writing the brilliant Virtual Equality: The Mainstreaming of Gay & Lesbian Liberation in 1995, being the executive director of the National LGBTQ Task Force, starting the first ever lesbian super PAC, LPAC, and just so much more fierce, amazing, generous work. Over the years I often saw her and her wife, Kate Clinton (oh, Kate, so much love!) around Provincetown, and one time attended their New Year’s bonfire at Herring Cove. I am weeping reading about her now. Here’s just one of the many accolades, from her alma mater, Northeastern:

“I know everyone uses ‘intersectionality.’ It’s become a buzzword and everyone talks about it, but the reality is that years before it was even a word, that’s just the way Urvashi operated,” Cathy Renna, communication director for the National LGBTQ Task Force, said. “She knew, in that uncompromising way that she always did, that that’s how we needed to approach our work.

“She wasn’t ahead of the curve. She was the curve. She was the unstoppable force that made us bend.”

Deep gratitude, Urvashi. Inspiring us. Forever. Accompanying us. Forever. In our hearts. Forever.

From Virtual Equality – I just opened it at random. It’s all gold.

What are we seeking power to achieve? A liberation movement’s answer differs from the liberal politics of single-issue and gay rights that we currently espouse. A liberation movement seeks fundamental social change: we are for a just world in which racism, homophobia, sexism, economic injustice, and other systems of domination are frankly addressed and replaced with new models. Such a movement begins first of all with an act of faith that the movement and society are possible. Put another way, this faith in social change is what the theorist bell hooks has so elegantly termed “the power of disbelief.” We must disbelieve in the permanence of things as they are in order to believe in our ability to launch a new gay and lesbian liberation movement.   –pp236-8, Chapter Seven, Politics and Power.

Every Friday, I showcase a queer femme goddess. I want to feature you! Write to me at thetotalfemme@gmail.com and let me shine a spotlight on your beautiful, unique, femmelife! If you’ve written a femme story or poem or song, oh, please let me post it!

At the Total Femme, my intention is to post three or four times a week: Meditations for Queer Femmes on Monday, Pingy-Dingy Wednesday on Wednesday, Femme Friday on Friday, and (new for spring 22!) the occasional Sometimes On A. Rather than play catch-up in a stressful fashion on those weeks when life prevents posting, I have decided to just move gaily forward: if I miss a Monday, the next post will be on Wednesday, and so on. Thank you, little bottle of antibiotics for inspiring me in this! (“…if it’s almost time for the next dose, skip the missed dose and continue your regular dosing schedule. Don’t take a double dose to make up for a missed one.”) And…as I go through life life life, I will post as I am able, Mabel.

Published in: on May 20, 2022 at 12:05 AM  Leave a Comment  
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