I have a white friend who is sexually attracted to black men. Recently he has raised the concern of how having a sexual appreciation for a black man's body is racist. He seemed worried that he was reducing black men to that of only their body parts. This is true. However I do not feel it warrants the title of racist.
I know a lot about oppression, discrimination and being considered less than the person next to you. I am middle eastern and do not identify as white. My birthplace is that of a different nation. I am a survivor of rape and was born intersex. My gender identity is agender and my orientation is pansexual. I have mental health conditions and am diagnosed with a degenerative physical disability.
I am aware of how incredibly cruel and unforgiving people on this planet are. I experience such cruelty on a daily basis, and have my entire life. However, with my personal understanding about the systems of oppression that I live under, I feel that I can draw a line and say that my friend is not racist for being sexually attracted to a black man's body.
I feel it is fair to say, that attraction itself, is a selective process that discriminates and objectifies. Every person alive in this world takes part in it, even people of color.
Now I want you to imagine a person in your life that you are just dying to get in bed with.
Imagine this individual's genitals.
Well I am here to say that this person could be different than what you had first expected. They could be infertile, they could have physical reproductive characteristics of both a man and a woman, their genitals may be covered in scar tissue, they could have a diminished sex drive and they could also be intersex like me.
I can't begin to tell you how many people look at me and say how attractive they think I am. Then later, after learning about my intersex status, look at me in total disgust. I can't begin to describe loneliness, hopelessness, feeling disgusting, undesirable, dirty and unf***able.
But I don't spend my time shaming others for not being attracted to me or wanting a relationship. I don't sit on my butt feeling sorry for myself. I keep looking. I keep searching. I know someone out there will like me and give me the chance I know I deserve.
Sexual attraction is oppressive towards everyone, that's just how it works. But being drawn to people, their bodies, and wanting to have sex with them, is simply a natural part of being human and having desires.
I encourage everyone to like and love who they wish. No one has the right to tell anyone else that their attraction towards others is wrong or bad. After all, that in itself, is discriminatory.