Coming out in inverted commas because I'm unsure as to how I feel about the term. No one should feel obligated to declare their sexuality - it is a very personal thing. However, we live in a world where people are assumed heterosexual until they assert otherwise, and as such coming out is often a practical thing you have to do. How can we expect to obtain our rights, without first asserting that we exist?

Sunday, 17 February 2013

Shahbag: Blog on Hold

The Shahbag protests in Dhaka, Bangladesh have been the biggest the country has seen in decades

The blog will be on hold while I dedicate my spare time and Twitter account to the Shahbag protests. If you're unsure of what the Shahbag protests are about, read this article by Tahmima Anam. There is a lot information and misinformation out there. In a nutshell, Bangladesh has finally put on trial Muslim fundamentalist war criminals. These criminals collaborated with Pakistan during our 1971 War of Independence to rape, torture and commit genocide. Their actions resulted in a death toll of three million and rape victims numbering around two hundred thousand. A tribunal recently sentenced one of these war criminals to life in prison. The tribunal has drawn criticism for its methodology (some of it fair),  as well as fallen victim to fundamentalist propaganda (not so fair). Life in prison in Bangladesh can actually mean a very short sentence due to corruption and changing governments. People want a more final solution, and as such are demanding the death sentence. While I am reluctant to encourage the application of death sentences, I do believe it's a better option than letting these criminals roam free again in a few years. 

I will only say one thing pertaining to sexuality in this post. It's rather obvious from my Twitter account that I am bisexual and write about LGBTQ issues. That, as of yet, has not attracted any hostility from anyone I've been interacting with online about Shahbag. I find this fact heartening.

I hope the next time I post Bangladesh will have dealt with the 1971 war criminals and their Islamist-fundamentalist agenda.

Sunday, 3 February 2013

Coming Out to...the Best Friend

My Thoughts

We were introduced by our parents, and as happens with all such introductions, it was awkward and we didn't really get on. Fast forward eight years however, and I can't think of another person who understands me quite like she does. We've had very similar lives - Muslim Bangladeshi parents, the back and forth between home and the other homes, the perennially dynamic existence. 

It didn't take me long to figure out that she wouldn't have a problem with my sexuality, whatever it turned out to be. When we were younger, she'd bring up random bi or gay guys she was friends with. I used to wonder if this was a hint, now I'm sure it was! Occasionally she'd actually ask me if I was straight, and justify her questions by saying I didn't act like most straight guys. But just sometimes, this would also be accompanied by some light-hearted teasing. This was without malice of course, but at the time it was enough for me to clamp up completely about my sexuality.