Does Queer Nightlife Need to Go Back in the Closet to Survive?
Co-director of The Culture Whore Rose Dommu discusses the issue of the queer community not having the same opportunities and therefore before forced to go underground, where it's not always safe and legal.This article originally appeared on THUMP
Photo by Luis Nieto Dickens
It's 11:30 PM on New Year's Eve and I'm kissing a boy when the lights go on. My first thought is that someone is snapping a photo of us, and I turn my head to fire off a cunty, "girl, stop." But it isn't a friend or photographer I see, but ten members of the NYPD walking through the doors of a Crown Heights DIY art space where my New Year's Eve party, Night Riders—conceptualized as "Westworld meets Joanne meets Studio 54" —is just starting.
The next few hours seem almost surreal: the cops ask for our liquor license, which, of course, we don't have. "Party's over," they tell the small crowd who had come for our free champagne toast at midnight. The police are not interested in talking to us, the promoters. They just keep asking to speak with the owner of the space, who isn't there, so they focus on the security guard, an elderly man of color. We take down our lights, pack up the CDJs, unplug the fog machine, rip down streamers, and climb up ladders to pack up projectors we'd only finished installing two hours ago...