Is the Gay Leather Community still a thing?
OK, so we can’t speak about our community thoroughly yet since we’re not entrenched in it, but this article published by the Guardian in the UK raises some interesting questions.
Is the gay leather scene a thing of the past? The rules, the hierarchy, the pageants, the cost, the venues and interest from a younger community all seem to play a role in its deterioration.
“Bars such as the Coleherne, the Anvil, Bloc, Substation and, most recently, the Hoist, have all disappeared into the annals of gay history, replaced with gastropubs, luxe apartments and identikit offices,” author of the article Ed Siddons says. “Rising rents, competitor fetishes and competition from online dating apps have all been a turn of the screw. Aficionados fear its decline is another milestone in the gay scene’s slow descent into homogeneity.”
Price and the evolution of queer people in general also both play roles in this shift. “Many leather nights still exclude women. Lesbian BDSM nights existed separate from the gay men’s scene, but no clubs have lasted,” Kellan Farshea, a UK sadomasochist states in the article.
“The scene also remains glaringly white,” Sandy Pianim, brand director at RECON says in the piece. “And in a time when queer cultures are shifting to conversations around gender rather than sex, leather’s celebration of unfettered masculinity feels out of joint.”
We’ll take proper steps to investigate what’s going on in Toronto’s leather scene which at a quick glance seems to have been reduced to harness parties, but until then, check out this piece which claims the scene is indeed breathing it’s last breaths.
Images courtesy of Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender Historical Society and Joe Hogan for the Huffington Post.