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What do the AA's in LGBTQIAA+ stand for?

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I was having a convo with a friend about how a local orgs stopped using LGBTQ+ and started using LGBTQIAA+ instead. I always assumed the AA meant ace and aro. And she said that she googled it to find the internet split on a-spectrum and ally. 

 

Personally, that doesn't sit well with me because the identity LGBTQ+ has always exclusively belonged to queer individuals, and the attachment of the last "A" as "allies" essentially brands the term LGBTQIAA+ as "anyone that's not a phobe." I think the use of term LGBTQIAA+ is important, especially if you live in a region where you still have to use labels to explain yourself. So adding "allies" as the A takes away the purpose of the acronym. Maybe I'm wrong, but I'd love to hear y'all's thoughts?

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And where would you say agender people fit in in this?

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2 hours ago, Jot-Aro Kujo said:

And where would you say agender people fit in in this?

hmm, I think it would fit under the T right? As trans is seen as an umbrella term for the non-binary community? Feel free correct me if I'm wrong! 

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1 minute ago, boba said:

hmm, I think it would fit under the T right? As trans is seen as an umbrella term for the non-binary community? Feel free correct me if I'm wrong! 

Not all nonbinary folks identify as trans, and not all agender folks even identify as nonbinary. I’ve heard from some who don’t consider themselves nonbinary because this term implies participating in some form of gender- To some people, being agender is not being some gender that’s not within the binary, it’s not participating in the system of gender at all, meaning they’re not nonbinary in the same way “colorless” isn’t somehow a secondary color just because it isn’t a primary color.

Of course, plenty of agender folks do consider themselves nonbinary and/or trans. But not all do. So while it’s debatable whether or not there should be an A for ally, to say there are two As and they stand for ace and aro is to erase agender people. 

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18 minutes ago, Jot-Aro Kujo said:

Not all nonbinary folks identify as trans, and not all agender folks even identify as nonbinary. I’ve heard from some who don’t consider themselves nonbinary because this term implies participating in some form of gender- To some people, being agender is not being some gender that’s not within the binary, it’s not participating in the system of gender at all, meaning they’re not nonbinary in the same way “colorless” isn’t somehow a secondary color just because it isn’t a primary color.

Of course, plenty of agender folks do consider themselves nonbinary and/or trans. But not all do. So while it’s debatable whether or not there should be an A for ally, to say there are two As and they stand for ace and aro is to erase agender people. 

That makes sense. I'm not opposed to adding another A or having any of the A's stand for a-spectrum. I absolutely do think that the agender community deserves a letter/identifier that fits them and is inclusive to them. I think the main part that I was, and still am, struggling to see is how ally would fit as an A without defeating the utility of the term LGBTQIAA+.

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I think they add this second A because originally, the A in LGBTQIA (or I don't know exactly, it's easy to get lost) was indeed for ally (if I'm not mistaken). Then, the ace community started saying the ace is for asexual, not ally. And then, it leads to discussions and fights about if the A was for ally or asexual. Which was problematic, because asexuals see it as acephobic if the A is for ally, but at the same time, saying the A is for asexual is sending away the allies who were there before. So, I suppose that adding this A is a way to stop the debate by including them both.

Of course, it leads to other problems : like, the fact that their is no A for agender, or aromantic. So we could add other As, but the acronnym is already so long. But at the same time, if we put only one A and say it means all of this term, I'm not sure that it will end the fights about what it should mean... That's complicated.

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Honestly, I think that putting an A for allies is not a good idea. This is because you can support a cause and not be in the frontlines. There is no need, and this is my opinion, in including allies in a marginalized group. We are a minority for good or bad. We deserve our own space, free to be ourselves. The allies do not have to suffer the consequences or being judged for being something that is not cis het. They have literally almost every space in the world, and then, in the small space that we are forming to meet each other and be happy, they want to be too? Sorry but that is kinda egocentric. I see it like we are building a sand castle just in one part of the beach, we are happy building it because they do not let us play outside that space, and then comes this persons, who can play anywhere else, have a yacht and all, and then they want to go and go play inside our castle. Dude, that castle has been built in blood, and you haven't spilled any for this castle, so sorry but I don't think you can just enter. From what I understand, allies invited themselves, not the other way around. That is my opinion, I am fine that they want to help, but just respect our space, you have everything else, let me have this tiny but comfy space.

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3 hours ago, Blake said:

Honestly, I think that putting an A for allies is not a good idea. This is because you can support a cause and not be in the frontlines. There is no need, and this is my opinion, in including allies in a marginalized group. We are a minority for good or bad. We deserve our own space, free to be ourselves. The allies do not have to suffer the consequences or being judged for being something that is not cis het. They have literally almost every space in the world, and then, in the small space that we are forming to meet each other and be happy, they want to be too? Sorry but that is kinda egocentric. I see it like we are building a sand castle just in one part of the beach, we are happy building it because they do not let us play outside that space, and then comes this persons, who can play anywhere else, have a yacht and all, and then they want to go and go play inside our castle. Dude, that castle has been built in blood, and you haven't spilled any for this castle, so sorry but I don't think you can just enter. From what I understand, allies invited themselves, not the other way around. That is my opinion, I am fine that they want to help, but just respect our space, you have everything else, let me have this tiny but comfy space.

 I think I tend to agree. The term "ally" implies cis het. So including it in the term LGBTQIAA+ just doesn't make sense. I get that feeling of, "I thought I had a community/label that I can call my own. But now I don't even get that privilege."

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In all fairness, "allies" are often included as a way to allow closeted people safer access to support. So, say, someone could tell their parents "Oh, I'm not gay, I'm just going as an ally." and their parents would be none the wiser.

Personally though, I prefer LGBTQ+, or LGBTQIAPN, I think they're more inclusive.

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47 minutes ago, Jot-Aro Kujo said:

In all fairness, "allies" are often included as a way to allow closeted people safer access to support. So, say, someone could tell their parents "Oh, I'm not gay, I'm just going as an ally." and their parents would be none the wiser.

Personally though, I prefer LGBTQ+, or LGBTQIAPN, I think they're more inclusive.

I can see your point here and I can certainly agree if it is used like that. Yeah I like LGBTQ+ for the inclusiveness. It is rarer for me to hear about LGBTQIAPN, but I like it too.

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From what I understand, the original usage of the "A" in LGBTA was for "Alliance", rather than allies.  Which is a nuanced difference, but I think originally it was more about being an alliance between these different queer identity groups, but then people started changing it to allies, then ace & aro communities were like wait if the A is representing any group of people it should be us not straight allies.

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On 5/18/2020 at 8:51 AM, Jot-Aro Kujo said:

n all fairness, "allies" are often included as a way to allow closeted people safer access to support. So, say, someone could tell their parents "Oh, I'm not gay, I'm just going as an ally." and their parents would be none the wiser.

I always saw allies as that, a place for the closeted and questioning to be acknowledged without having to be out or defined. But things seem to be changing, I had no idea some groups had added an extra A on the term. Personally I see many more jokes about the ever increasing acronym than a sense of inclusive community, so personally I prefer just LGBT+ (the + being a simple shortcut that can't be laughed at)

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