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Creek / Seminole views on Gay / Lesbians

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I saw on the news that either yesterday or today was National Coming Out Day. No, I am not gay, nor am I coming out. It reminded me of discussions we have had among the elders of the Creek / Seminole views on gay and lesbianism. And a funny story that I will end this with.

Growing up in a very religious Christian background, I knew little about gay people other than the bad things that the church says about them. It may seem funny that I was not even aware of gay sex until I was 24 years old and had that briefing on sexually transmitted diseases during Army boot camp. I was not aware that people did that!

In Creek and Seminole society, they are much more understanding. It is recognized that everyone has masculine and feminine attributes that are balanced out. During Green Corn, women will take on the masculine warrior aspects in the ribbon dance, while men will be more feminine. This is to bring balance to our lives and work out all the bad energies we have acquired in the past year.

Everything in the Muskogee universe is balanced out. The masculine, the feminine, and then there are the in-between folks. With a coin you have heads, tails, and the small edge of the coin. These in-between folks are accepted in the society and also fulfill functions. They are represented in Native American iconography, where characters have both male and female attributes. There are not two different sexes, but three and four. Other tribes call these people “two spirits” because the dual male and female characteristics.

I would say that most people I know who have come out as gay and lesbian are Native American. I don’t know if that is because of the crowd I hang out with, or if it can be seen everywhere now.

When Europeans first arrived in Florida, the French Huguenots had some engravings of these in-between people. On the engraving by Theodore de Bry below, they are working as nurses or healers to sick and injured warriors. This is certainly a vital function in the society.


So I want to end this with a story that usually comes to mind when we are talking about gay and lesbian people in Native American society. This is a great story that I heard from the elders.

There was a gay couple at the community/Square Grounds who were moving to Oklahoma. They were accepted down here, but were a bit apprehensive about being accepted attending a new community/Grounds. They had felt that the people in Oklahoma might be a stronger church crowd, and might think they were a bit too odd. They left, and returned for a visit a year later. They said, yes the people in Oklahoma did find them odd, but not for the reasons they would think. They were not looked upon as strange because they were gay. Those people in Oklahoma could not understand them since the gay couple were vegetarians.
Current Location:
the hammock
Current Mood:
awake awake
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