Wednesday, November 28, 2007

The Gay Hood

With the sudden closure of the Newtown Hotel in Sydney and the temporary closure of the Imperial Hotel it feels like a part of the gay community in Sydney has gone.

Along with some of the recent issues in Oxford St as straight clubs open up and bring more straight people into Oxford St one gets a feeling that Darlinghurst and Newtown aren't as gay as they used to be.

Having lived in Auckland of course one is used to not having a gay district and those gay bars which do appear come and go around New Zealand.

As Franc noted while visitor the Vancouver gay district

Auckland has no gay village. There is a part of K-Road, about half a block long (or short) that has a gay bar, and a couple of shops with rainbow stickers on the door, and that's about it.
So does it matter that Oxford St isn't as gay as it used to be?

Probably not but what does matter is the rise of homophobic violence in Oxford St. Of course when people have been out drinking all night some violence is bound to occur but it looks like it is on the rise again and directed against gay men and women.

This is partially been countered by opening a safe space in Oxford St.

It is times like this that you realise that maybe there is still a need for a gay district and gay space where been queer is the norm.

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