Listen up all you single ladies planning to have your bachelorette party at a gay bar. RuPaul has something to say on that topic.
Gay people are not accessories to your straight life and gay bars are not “tourist” attractions.
“Check yourself before you wreck yourself,” Ru said in a recent interview on the podcast “Dinner Party Download.” “You know, this is an important thing: People who live in the mainstream and the status quo think that everyone else is there to serve them.”
He ripped the Band-Aid off a long-painful and much-discussed topic within the LGBTQ community: To welcome bachelorette parties to gay bars or not.
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When famous West Hollywood gay bar The Abbey decided five years ago to ban them, Louis Peitzman, now a senior editor at BuzzFeed News, hailed the news.
“Bachelorette parties at gay bars are (freaking) annoying,” he wrote for Gawker. “It’s nothing against straight people. Some of my best friends are straight. There’s just something particularly insufferable about hosting a bachelorette party at a gay bar.
“I think it's great that straight women feel comfortable around gay men, and vice versa ...
“But throwing a bachelorette party at The Abbey or any other gay bar isn’t a way to celebrate that friendship: it’s weirdly exploitative. It's not so much about the joy of having gay friends as it is about the essential novelty of gay people. When a group of women go to a gay bar to let loose for a bachelorette party, the gay men become props.”
Before same-sex marriage was allowed in the United States, bachelorette parties felt like a poke in the eye for many gay bar owners and their patrons.
The Abbey founder David Cooley’s decision to ban them was as much a political statement as anything else.
“Every Friday and Saturday night, we’re flooded with requests from straight girls in penis hats who want to ogle our go-gos, dance with the gays and celebrate their pending nuptials,” he wrote in a press release at the time.
“They are completely unaware that the people around them are legally prohibited from getting married. Over the past 22 years, The Abbey has been a place that accepts everyone, gay, straight, lesbian, transgender, bisexual and everything in between. We love our straight girlfriends and they are welcome here, just not for bachelorette parties.”
Ru, who recently announced he married longtime boyfriend Georges LeBar in January, said one problem is straight people don’t know how to be around gay people.
“People don’t know how to place me in their consciousness,” he said. “They think, ‘Oh, you must be here to make me look good. That’s what gay guys are, right? You’re an accessory for my straight life.’ Just because your limited view is that everyone’s there to serve you and that you’re the only person in the world. It doesn’t work that way.”
Last summer PopSugar ran a primer called “How to Have Your bachelorette Party at a Gay Bar — Without Being a Jerk.”
One tip: Be subtle. Leave the crowns and sashes and penis party favors at home because they scream “that you are at a gay bar for a Disney-esque experience, or to gawk at the crowd like they’re animals in a zoo — and no one wants that.”