My bi brotherĀ 

My sister found my little brother’s phone still in his hand late on night. Light still on and headphones still plugged in. He was fast asleep. She reached to take the phone from his clutch and place it on the table besides him. And then she dropped it. 

He had been watching porn. And not just any porn but gay porn. 

Her little brother. 17, brown and Muslim. 

She didn’t know what to do and and came crying into my room. She gave me his phone. He had been messaging a older man. The man had sent him pictures and videos. And he had sent pictures back – but only of his face, fully clothed (as far as the pictures on record showed). 

I proceeded to printscreen and send to myself so I had this man’s number. A man who was sending naked images to minors. And accidently locked the phone. Fuck. 

The next morning my brother saw someone had messaged me the pictures. I called him into my room and explained I that I was simply worried about the pedophile and reassured him I still loved and cared for him. I apologised for going through his phone and told him he could speak to me if he wants. 

He told me he was bi. And I told him it was ok. He begged me not to tell mum and I promised him I wouldn’t. 

And I haven’t. 

But we haven’t spoken about it since. Not me and him. Not my sister and I. 

I have always been an advocate for liberation and this included LGBT+ rights as you cannot separate them. Yet as a straight, cis person – it has not been personal before as racism, disabilities, sexism and islamophobia have been. 

Since then I have been doing a lot of thinking about queerness. I do wonder if we are all born queer and socitial and other pressures lead us to live one way or another. For instance, LGBT+ communities were very prevalent and accepted in south Asian communities prior to western, Christian colonisation that outlawed it. And yet Islam specifically prohibits non-heterosexual relationships. It also prohibits all sexual relationships prior to marriage.

I guess it is easy to speak about rights that go against your culture when the two don’t have to intersect. This whole thing has made me question my allyship. Clearly more for show than I had previously realised. 

And of course this is not about me. I am sure my brother is going through a very complicated thought process, being outed without his choice and having to navigate life as a bi, brown, Muslim man. 

Yet that does not take away from me having to do a lot of learning and growing. 

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Water is lifeĀ 

“Our nation was born in genocide when it embraced the doctrine that the original American, the Indian, was an inferior race. Even before there were large numbers of Negroes on our shore, the scar of racial hatred had already disfigured colonial society. From the sixteenth century forward, blood flowed in battles over racial supremacy. We are perhaps the only nation which tried as a matter of national policy to wipe out its indigenous population. Moreover, we elevated that tragic experience into a noble crusade. Indeed, even today we have not permitted ourselves to reject or feel remorse for this shameful episode. Our literature, our films, our drama, our folklore all exalt it. Our children are still taught to respect the violence which reduced a red-skinned people of an earlier culture into a few fragmented groups herded into impoverished reservations.” – MLK Jr. 

When money is more important that the lives and value of not just a generation bit of generations we know we are lost. Humanity should be more than this. 

The state are on the side of the oppressors. The state are on the side of the wreckers. The state is on the side of the rich. The state was never built to protect you and I. 

So it is up to us. We must rise. We must unite. 

Love me now

I asked you again and again “what do you want me to do?” And you told me you don’t want you in the centre of what I wanted to do. 

And I knew you loved me. 

You never asked me what I wanted you to do. 

If you had I would have told you I wanted you to hold me tight. Drive away any space between us. Hold me so that I can forget the people around us and the people in my head. 

Kiss me. Kiss the top of my head. Kiss me on my cold cheek. Kiss me on the lip. Make my stomach flutter and my heart burst. Make the floor beneath my feet disappear. 

Tell me you will fight for me. You will never let me go. You will not lose me. Promise me. 

But you don’t hold me. And you don’t kiss me. And you don’t tell me lies. 

And I know you love me. 

So I’m gonna love you now, like it’s all I have
I know it’ll kill me when it’s over
I don’t wanna think about it, I want you to love me now – Love me now, John Legend