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What the F#@% Are You Doing In a Gay Bar If You’re Not Gay?

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Ladies and gentlemen, presenting ProjectRant.

Don’t even pretend for a second that you haven’t experienced this very real phenomena. I would even argue that lesbians have it lucky compared to gay men. That straight guy who keeps grabbing your ass? At least you’ve never experienced the specific circle of hell that is the humbling experience of introducing yourself to him, only to be met with a terse “No homo.”

Seriously?!

While we absolutely believe that allies of the gay community should be welcome and valued, sometimes a gay bar should just be a gay bar. We actually discussed this very situation at the World Domination Summit this weekend. Portland’s gay bars were overflowing with straight women seeking a safe place to dance, and therefore also teeming with straight men trying to hit on straight women. Lesbians were being accosted by drunk straight men, and the gay men were all either intimidated or incredibly aggressive because the straight girls were spilling drinks as they tried dancing in six inch heels.

In short, it sucked. The vibe was terrible. We’ve experienced the same type of situation at almost every gay bar in Vancouver, B.C. as well. However, in Seattle most gay bars charge $5 cover for men, and $20 cover for women. While I have to admit, this really does solve the problem quite nicely, it’s always left me feeling uncomfortable about the potential legal ramifications. These bars are discriminating quite freely, are they not?

But again, sometimes a gay bar should just be a gay bar.

What are you thoughts on this problem?

(via AfterEllen)

  • My cousin had her 21st birthday party at a small gay club.  It’s the vibe, man.  Totally different vibe.  Totally.

    And it was the first time I got to tip a dancer lol

  • It’s not discrimination to charge women more. Straight clubs have been charging men more for years, and you never see one have a “Gentlemen’s Night”.

  • I guess it’s all our pot and diversity. Our bad.

  • pezalinski

    Seriously? Seattle’s public establishments are allowed to segregate by cover charge? Isn’t that illegal sex discrimination? Either way, it’s wrong. If you want a gay-only club, form a private club and charge a membership fee, like the bath houses do. Too many bachelorette parties can ‘ruin the vibe’ at a gay bar, but no more so than the overly intoxicated. Simple stated, bad behavior shouldn’t be tolerated by the management; if it’s within reason, people will either deal with it, or take their business some place else.

  • Why is charging women discriminatory? Straight bars charge men more than women…

  • Anonymous

     I think it’s because what man would go to a “gentlemen’s night”? No girls would be there.

  • Straight bars charge a higher cover for men all the time, so I don’t know why a gay bar couldn’t get away with it.  Whether it’s right is another question…

    One of our Seattle bars has it right.  They let guys in for free if they show a membership card for one of the local bathhouses or gay sports associations.

  • Never been to a bar. period. end of story. OTL… so lonely!

  • I truly believe it would be reverse discrimination to ban straight people from gay bars. The reason to do so is based on a lot of idiotic straight people that do inappropriate things. I get that. But those things are also happening at other bars that aren’t necessarily “gay bars.” There are also a lot of idiotic gay people that will do inappropriate things at both gay and straight bars. So really the basis of the problem is getting idiotic people out of all bars. If there are people who are excessively drunk or just being plain rude it is the job of the bar owners and bouncers to get them out of the bar. It is also the responsibility of the customers to alert the bar owners/bouncers when these people are getting out of hand. Too many times people try and take things into their own hands and it causes more problems. There is no reason we should have to have “gay” bars anyway. Shouldn’t we all be able to go to the same places and live our lives without someone discriminating against us? If we fall to the mentality that straight people should stay in their bars and gay people should stay in theirs, then where does it end? Maybe we should have straight bars, gay bars, lesbian bars, bisexual bars, transgender bars, black bars, white bars, Latino bars, Asian bars, etc. and keep segregating from there… That doesn’t make sense. Gay bars started because people couldn’t be themselves in a bar without getting discriminated against. Let’s not be hypocritical and discriminate against others because of poor bar management. Remember: Separate is inherently unequal.

  • Amy Warner

    My husband and I have several close friends who are gay and lesbian and they much prefer to go to gay friendly bars & dance clubs when we go out. We love going with them and always have a great time. Not too long ago, a straight couple asked us to go out dancing  to a club and on the way home, my husband turned to me and said, “I don’t know about you, but I have so much more fun when we go to gay bars.” I agreed wholeheartedly. I think their are a few reasons why we prefer them. Firstly, we absolutely love our friends and want to be with them where they feel the most comfortable. Secondly, my husband doesn’t have to worry about straight men trying to grope me constantly. Thirdly, our years of experience going to gay bars has taught us that the GLBT community is just fun! They just seem to be a much more open-minded, liberal, fun-loving crowd and we completely love them. I hope no one ever wants to keep us out because I’m afraid my dancing days would have to be over. Peace & love to you all. 

  • I’m torn. On the one hand, I am the straight girl in the gay bars for two reasons, one being safety. I have NEVER seen this as a problem in the bar that I go to. The very few straight men that I have seen there came with me, and it’s because the gay guys in the bar are their friends, too. Everybody’s very chilled out and respectful of each other’s boundaries, it’s just a much safer environment for EVERYBODY. However, if there is a problem of too many straight people messing the scene up, it IS the gay turf so the straight people need to just GO AWAY. Another point I would like to make is, why would it be discrimination to charge a higher cover for women? It’s done everywhere… only in reverse.

  • Straight people should wear a marker in a gay bar so they can be shunned and they don’t hit on people without a marker (like a button or wristband or something).

  • Totally agree with the sentiment. I’ve been going on about this for nearly two years. I live in Ireland and the so-called ‘gay’ bars actively advertise to the straights (student nights, women’s nights, hen parties etc.) – I’ve had straight women spill drinks on my coat and when challenged they told me to ‘chill out, you’re gay aren’t you?’ – WTF?!?! WTF has being gay got to do with being cool with having drinks spilled on your coat? In another ‘gay’ bar I had a straight guy punch me in the stomach to see if I could take it because ‘all gay men have six-packs’ he said (later that night he bit my arm – go figure). Time to queer gay bars again IMO.

  • This is the most hypocritical piece of trash I have EVER read.  Those of you that agree with this sit there and beg for equal rights, yet you have the balls to support segregation? If we’re ever going to grow as a society we need to stop the hate.  Stop the discrimination (on BOTH ends) and stop the segregationist attitude.  Imagine the uproar of the LGBT community if a bar was to exclude homosexuals.  You’re just fueling the fires of inequality, not trying to put them out.   

  • Wanting a safe space is not the same as racial segregation and does not mean we are negatively discriminating – that kind of language is alarmist and irrational – using that logic we should no longer have seperate changing facilities at swimming pools, gyms etc. and taking it to the extreme there should be no ageism either so children of both sexes should be forced to undress and have communal showers with adults.

    Really, people need to calm down, get a grip and think rationally.

    We have ‘segregation’ all around us on a regular basis that we accept without any issue.

    Wanting a safe space to socialize does not exclude us from looking for equal rights no more than members of a private gym, golf club, arthouse cinema, shareholder’s meeting, girl’s only or boy’s only boarding school etc. (and the list goes on – taken to its logical conclusion, you would have to ban isolation units in hospitals and never quarantine a contagious person ever again).

    There is separation as opposed to segregation and selectivity as opposed to discrimination and there are positive reasons for both.

  • John R. Petrozino Jr.

    You all f-ed up on the West Coast – we don’t have those problems in NYC!

  • iSwim

    It’s kind of a confusing situation… On one end, gay bars are a great place for gays and lesbians to hang out for a good time with people who are typically ‘batting for the same team’ (takes out a LOT of confusion); however, on the other end, these bars are meant to be a place for anyone to come in who’s looking for a good, sane time.  I think we have to find a balance between allowing people to enter a club or bar and enjoying themselves with the amount of bar security (example: that drunk girl stumbling around should probably get a ride home…).

    And also, by enforcing a limited group of people to enter a space, we create the same kind of barriers that straight bars sometime enforce on gays – in turn, creating reverse discrimination. It’s a double-edged sword 🙁

  • Ra Svobodová

    I disagree. I recently did a study for my cultural psych class on gay bars in prague..and the consensus seems  to be that most regulars dont mind the company of women (lesbian or hetero) or hetero men attending their bars, as long as their not bothering them. Im sure there would be an uproar if straight bars were to complain that gays were frequenting. I like the idea of integration, not this straight bar/gay bar discrimination. 

  • iSwim

    With this being said, this video rocks!

  • Kit Foxley

    Yeah well the only lesbian bar in Portland is now a ‘queer’ bar open to everyone, so… I dunno. I guess it says decent stuff about the straight but not narrow folks out here, but some guys just don’t know where ‘not’ to pick up ‘chicks’.  Gay bars and lesbian bars are two of those places.  You’d think it’d be obvious but…

  • Brighton McGavin

    Yes we so need more comments on “whos dick is bigger”..grow up dude they didnt ask you for your lame opinion on whos better then who. I mean really come on

  • Victoria R. Austin

    I’m a bi sexual woman, so I go to both straight and gay bars…however I prefer gay bars because straight men just WILL NOT leave me (or my g/f’s) alone. Perhaps we need to educate straight men that being an ass grabber will not get you a date…and in my case it will get you a punch in the mouth.

  • Tony D

    We need to welcome everyone into the gay and lesbian bars. End of story. Integration not discrimination. As for charging women more I think thats unfair for the lesbians who want to go out with their gay friends. Imagine if a straight bar tried to discriminate against gays – how would that make us feel? And I have to agree with John – we don’t have these problems in NYC lol

  • Emily Phillips

    It’s all right if you’re there with your friends (I’m asexual and find a lot of good company among gays and lesbians), but yeah, I get tired of the heteros too. Either it’s a bunch of younger teenage girls there to gawk at the adorable little gay men or it’s like you said – straight women who just wanna dance and straight men who just wanna hit on them. I’m right there with the lesbians – as an asexual woman, there is nothing more jarring than having my ass grabbed.

  • Justin Sams

    I disagree. I have been out to many gay bars and have heard many complaints about the bachelorette crowds, the straight girls who drag their insecure straight boyfriends on the dancefloor, the drunk sorority girls in high heels spilling drinks as they try and make it up on or off the speaker boxes, etc. While yes, we’ve all seen this a lot in gay clubs, it happens anywhere. And as a gay man, I would never want to be told that a straight club should just be a straight club, and not feel welcome. Of course, I’m not naive and I’ve also been to many straight clubs where I didn’t exactly feel welcome, but some of my best friends are straight girls AND guys and I don’t limit myself to what clubs I can and feel like I can’t go to – so I would never want to see the same when it comes to who is welcome at a gay bar/club. What I DO have a problem with is people who wander in to a gay bar and end up getting belligerent and making trouble for everyone else – if you’re the least bit uncomfortable with the gay scene, DO NOT GO. I also have a huge problem with different cover charges for men and women at straight clubs. I shouldn’t have to (and don’t) go to a straight club if I know that I’ll be paying 2 or 3 times more to get in than my straight girl friend. I get WHY “straight clubs” do that, but it’s bullcrap. I wait in the same line, drink the same drinks, dance on the same floor and to the same music as everyone else, so I will pay the same cover charge, or I won’t go.

  • Tamara I. Sanchez Astleford

    Hmmmmm…we don’t have these issues in Florida either. Bottom line is I go to the gay bars because I have gay friends and we all like to hang out together! Sometimes my gay friends come to the straight bars with us…it is called coexisting! Plus, let’s face it…Gay Bars ALWAYS have better looking people (gay or straight), superior fashion sense, outstanding drinks, and way more fantastic music! 

  • Adam Kuglin

    This notion of “integration” is stupid… gay bars are segregated for a reason that benefits everyone: the gay guys can hit on each other and the straight guys don’t have to “worry” about being hit on. The rules change in a gay bar, and if it makes straight people uncomfortable, they’re more than welcome to stay on the sidewalk. As to making it more expensive for women to attend, if it keeps the stupid bachelorette parties out, so be it. There’s nothing more obnoxious than 20 drunk woo-girls wearing tiaras, screaming at the top of their lungs, and fawning all over the guys in the bar like it’s a petting zoo. Ugh… gross.

  • Rachel

    Couldn’t make my mind up whether to laugh at how true the rant is or make googly eyes at the ranter.  I settled for both.  Whoever she is, I hope she someday hits on me at a gay bar!  Another thing: straight girls at the LGBTQ meetings?  Stop getting offended when we dykes ask you out for coffee to discuss feminism and gay rights after the meeting.  You suck at being allies.

  • Josh

    I think it’s like anything else in the gay world..raising some sort of awareness.  It’s all in how the patrons of the bar handle themselves.  I’ve been out to gay bars where it’s nearly 50/50 straight to gay and the night was a blast and I’ve been out where it’s a nightmare.  I do agree that if you’re straight and you roll into a gay bar just to make faces, spill drinks, and bother the regular patrons then the bar managers and bouncers should be tossing you out; you don’t belong there!  Otherwise come in and have fun, that’s what we’re all there to do……………Oh and btw; bachelorette parties NOT welcome.  I didn’t come to see a drunk, loud, obnoxious parade of your best bitches, there enough heel-wearing queens out there at the right bars; don’t invade this club just because we have the hot boys 😉

  • Rich

    There is a simple one word answer:  RESPECT.  If patrons, either gay or straight, do not respect the other patrons in the bar, then the bartenders, bouncers, or bar owners need to ask the offending person to leave.  Now, it that only happened in reality!

  • I agree with her because when Im in a gay bar I dont want to see poeple making face at me. Im here to dance with guys and dont need to care about others sexuality. We are a minority and I think we deserve our small sanctuary.

  • Dream big! All bars should be created equal and they should serve cheap beer. 

  • Problem is, men do not go into two categories gay or straight. The sexual spectrum is wide and varied and we all fit somewhere on it. 

  • Personally I say let straights go to gay bars but don’t charge more over depending on what gender they are.  I wouldn’t want that to happen to me if I went to a hetero bar.  After working in the gay bar industry going on 6 years however all I ask is that straight men not over react and freak out if they get hit on and for gay men who want an all gay bar…just make it so overly sexed that no woman would dare to want to enter it.  Either that or just make it a private club.  We have many of all the above examples here in Texas believe it or not. Works fine here. 

  • Kevin L. Cole-Meneses

    Luckily, here in La Antigua Guatemala, where I live, there *are* bars that have “Guys’ Nights.”  Wings, drink specials for the guys (for a change), and an overall nice vibe with a good (and totally tolerant mix) of gays and straights.

  • Elize Jekabson

    I’m a lesbian that goes to a gay club that has predominantly gay male customers , but has  many lesbian customers as well. This is because in my town, lesbians simply have a smaller community. One too small to make a lesbian club.  This club is a great place for us meet and to meet fun gay male friends too.   If a 20 dollar charge was put on for simply being a female, this gathering for gay women would just dissipate.  Its not only pushing out the straight women, but the gay women as well.  It would be nice to not have to have my gaydar on full blast at the club trying to figure out if that girl is gay, a “fruit fly” or “fag hag” but i think the “problem” can be addressed in another way.

  • Kate shull

    Honestly reading this article made me feel a little sad. I love my gay boys. They took me under wing since breaking into the lesbian scene here is almost non-existent. The *thought* of a bouncer having to say, “No you can’t be here because you are a straight female/male, and we’ve had problems with straight females/males (note article) and so only gays/lesbians,” really stings.  

    I know we want our retreats, our gay-only sphere every once in a while. But we’re going to have to make some concessions as our life style becomes more and more mainstream. Can we really help it if main stream likes our style? That our bar tenders are cuter? And our drinks are as toxic as Brittany Spear’s perfume line? 

    If we’re having such an issue with this, we need to speak out to the owners/city counsels/bar associations  as a group. I like the idea of having a cover for non-members of a club. Second, we need to speak to community leaders about why straight women don’t feel safe in a straight bar. 

    While we can’t adjust the mannerisms of the masses overnight, we can at least promote that no orientation should feel threatened. 

    I move for the issue of the much joked about -but seriously we need it- gay card. lol

  • ShowMeGuy

    The bachelorette parties reserve a table up front on the one night all month that a traveling gay-male strip show is in town.  They show up half way thru the show with balloons that block the views for everyone else.  They act like idiots with their cameras and bridal shower gifts which they unwrap during the remaining part of the show. They dump their drinks everywhere along with all the wrapping paper, ballons and random table decorations they bring with them….and they leave all the mess behind for the rest of us to wade thru when the show is over and it is time to hit the dance floor.
    A drunk is easy…..you haul ’em out….end of problem.

  • ShowMeGuy

    The bachelorette parties reserve a table up front on the one night all month that a traveling gay-male strip show is in town.  They show up half way thru the show with balloons that block the views for everyone else.  They act like idiots with their cameras and bridal shower gifts which they unwrap during the remaining part of the show. They dump their drinks everywhere along with all the wrapping paper, ballons and random table decorations they bring with them….and they leave all the mess behind for the rest of us to wade thru when the show is over and it is time to hit the dance floor.
    A drunk is easy…..you haul ’em out….end of problem.

  • How are heterosexuals in a gay bar “unsafe” in any way shape or form.  Based on your logic, you’d be okay with gay people being banned from a “straight bar” because it would make hetero’s feel safe?
    I bar tended at a bar that my UNCLE owned and when I came out of the closet as bi-sexual, I was fired because my sexuality “freaked out” the customers.  I was forced to find other work because they were afraid that i’d hit on them.  They didn’t know me, yet they generalized the entire LGBT community and assumed that because I was different, because I liked both males and females, that they weren’t “safe”.  What I took from what you said, is that you’d feel my uncle was right in firing me because the straight customers didn’t feel safe.
    Try flipping this around on the other side.  Don’t generalize all straight people. 
    I’m going to have to disagree with you that it IS discriminatory.  Again, try looking it at the other angle. 

  • To those who support this: How would you feel theoretically, if a straight bar decided to not let any gay people out.  Would you be offended?  Would you see this as discriminatory? 

  • ShowMeGuy

    1. Music at the gay club is the best music in town.
    2. Straight girls can have a good time without half-drunk straight male jerks giving them slack.
    3. If there is a fight, it is between newly broken up lesbians. It lasts less than 90 seconds.
    4. Gay boys can kiss each other and nobody cares.
    5. Straight couples kiss and if any gays yell *GROSS*…..they are friends of the couple.
    6. Straight boys who go…..know who’s turf they’re on and they act respectfull.
    7. There is a better vibe, a fun vibe that says *home safe away from a world filled with hate*.

  • So, are gay people not allowed in straight bars? I get the irritation, but discrimination is bad no matter who is enforcing it.

  • In my city we don’t have any gay bars, but I would hope that if we ever did, it would be inclusive, & not discriminatory. People should just be respectful, doesn’t seem like too much to ask. But then again, we’ll probably never have one here anyway. Seems like it would be a great way to meet LGTB friends.

  • Anonymous

    A GAY MAN!

  • Jee, thanks.

  • I’m from Lexington, Ky and as far as I know the gay bars here don’t have that problem. Everyone is charged equally and anyone who is being harrassed is protected by both other patrons and bar staff. This does totally suck that this happening anywhere. What needs to happen is respect. Respect for the people around you, the place you are in and the vibe of the place and time. Straight men and women need to know this and practice this.

    Because honestly, if I could never see another drag show again I would cry!

  • It was not too long ago that I myself was frequenting the gay bars.  I enjoyed being around “like-minded” people, and not having to worry about what would happen if I walked up to a guy and told he looked good.  However, this approach back fired on me mutiple times. 

    Living the south (Memphis, TN), there is all kind of segregation.  Many of the posts here seem to think it unfair and degrading that his is happening, but well, it is part of our (the entire United States) society.  While I agree that there should be no segregation, how can anyone posting here believe that the rant made above is obscene?

    I can’t tell you how many times I was at a gay bar and got looked down upon, or harassed for walking up to a guy and flirting.  How many times I was told, “I’m not a F*g, just get the F**k away from me!” Or how many times threats of physical violence were used.
     
    This kind of behavior happens every weekend, and it is unlikely to stop.  Everyone just needs to calm down and respect the establishment and its patrons.  I’m not likely to go with my friends to a “straight” bar and complain that some woman hit on me.  I would take it as a compliment and move on.  Straight men and women who are in a “gay” club should have the same understanding.

    If you get flirted with, take is as a compliment and move on.  There is no reason someone of any sexual orientation should have to feel uncomfortable in a bar.  Let’s all just put on our “big girl panties” and act like decent members of society!

  • As a straight woman who doesn’t go out to bars, I have no real say. But, I have been discriminated against because I’m a pagan, and if I were to go out with my friends to some place and someone were to look at my Catholic friend and say, “Sorry, pagans only,” I’d leave and never go back. If it were Christian only, I may go just because of my friends, but I imagine the same ire would occur on both mine and my friends part if they pulled a similar move. Again, just my $0.02

  • Anonymous

    Honestly? From a straight perspective, that hit me as pretty damn condescending and arrogant. Guess what? I go to gay bars with my husband with our gay friends because that’s where our gay friends are comfortable. It’s not to make a huge statement, it’s not to ruin anyone’s night or piss anyone off, it’s because we have gay friends and we love them and out of deference to the fact that the world is not 100% accepting of them, we go where they feel the most comfortable. And we have fun. We’ve never had a single indication that anyone felt the way this woman seems to feel, everyone has been nice to our entire group every time we’ve been and I don’t really see what the big damn deal is. I’ve never seen the kind of behavior she’s talking about either – every gay bar I’ve ever been in would just escort that kind of crap to the curb and carry on with their night. Maybe you need to blame the bar you’re going to, not straight people.

  • Jeremy D. Kantorowicz

    I hate that there are places labeled as a “gay” bar.  I mean, you don’t have things labeled as a “straight bar”.  Or a sign on the door, “Proudly straight owned and operated.”  A bar is a bar.  And in this day and age, everyone is welcome.  My gas ass has walked into the most hick bars, thrown some Brit on the jukebox, and been more than welcomed, even gotten bought drinks!  Don’t encourage separation.  That idea is so 60 years ago.

  • If it wasn’t for my straight gal-pal’s I would have never grown the balls to enter my 1st gay bar. I like my gay bar integrated, and I hope it always stays that way. I live in Alabama and … we don’t have this problem here. My straight male friends love their queer bars. They don’t hit on the “local color” — pretty much just drink and laugh when the drag queens call them out and pull them on stage to make them take of their shirts. — I have no idea where this women is coming from, but I do not share her opinion. It just comes down to respect. You straights know what you are getting into when venturing into a gay bar, same goes for me when I go into a straight bar. Plus, I like to see straights in gay bars. It lets me know there are straight people out there that do love and respect us. I know there out there — that makes it easier to walk down the streets of Montgomery, AL holding my boyfriends hand and not feeling like I’m going to get gay bashed every time I pass group of straight men drinking beer out of their truck bed in a gas station parking lot.

  • I have a REALLY hard time believing this.

    OK, this has been said to death.  As anyone who’s seen me before knows, that won’t stop me when I’m ready to rant — and I’m more than ready.  SEPARATE IS NOT EQUAL.  It isn’t right when phobes do it to us, and it isn’t right for us to make some dumbass blanket rule to block out some troublemakers.  Yea, you know what you do with troublemakers?  Kick their asses out their first time, blacklist them the second time.

    If some blond twink were to get too drunk and start causing a scene, would you want the owner to say, “OK, no blond twinks are allowed in here, because they get drunk and cause a scene”?  (If you answered no, slap yourself HARD.  Like, right now.)  Of COURSE you wouldn’t, because that would be needlessly discriminatory.  So is telling our straight allies, male and female both, that their friendship ends at the club door.

    Seriously, what part of this was supposed to be a GOOD idea?

    Oh, and as for the “straight guy grabbing your ass then saying ‘no homo'”, I’m tempted to call shenanigans.  Any straight guy who’s willing to use the term “no homo” is likely to be the last person EVER found in a gay bar/club.  Ever.  And if said straight guy DID end up there, his hand would be perma-glued to a female ass, which wouldn’t require invoking the famous “no homo” clause.

  • In related news:

    Assigning different covers is hetero-bar speak for “We want lots of ladies here, so that the guys will show up in droves and try to pick up on them.  If we make it cheap for girls to get in, then we’ll get tons off the guys at the door.”

    This doesn’t translate as a business plan to us, since we’re not going to be charging bottoms one rate and tops another.  Any other way of looking at applying this logic is borderline (at best!) discrimination.  Does that mean that it isn’t discrimination when straight clubs deliberately charge less to get the ladies in the door?  No, it doesn’t.  It’s not right in either case.

    But aren’t we supposed to be the ones setting the better example?  Didn’t we already accept that responsibility?

  • I will vote that the reason that straight women don’t feel safe inside a straight bar is carry-over that they don’t feel safe outside of said straight bar, just walking down the street. That’s an entire mindset that is due to a failing of society (And possibly humanity).

    Now, if a bar (Gay or straight, doesn’t matter) that had a really, really good bounce staff on a nightly basis, fair cover charge for everyone, I would like to think that all groups of people would have a good time there, but how am I to know? I generally dislike going to bars in general, I’d rather go with a friend than go alone.

  • Ariel B. Dreamfalling

    There are good points and bad points to this video. First off we should never combat discrimination with return discrimination. Second it is understandable that we as a community can be outraged when people who don’t identify as one of us come to the places where we find comfort and solace with others of our kind and don’t treat us with respect. Worst off is dealing with the very idea that when straight people KNOWINGLY visit gay bars of any sort and they are approached in a flirtatious manner by the actually gay patrons they react in disgust. Let’s face facts we wouldn’t have gay only bars and clubs if our society was as integrated, tolerant and accepting of everyone as we dream of it being. The cold hard truth is that because of how our society is today we have no choice but to be segregated not because we want to be but because it is a necessity. While it is always a more dignified road to travel by practicing tolerance even in the face of discrimination, we cannot be upset at those of our community who do find this type of thing offensive. One thing we should never practice is intolerance among each other because right now it’s really us against the world. And I don’t believe it’s too much to ask that when straight folks visit our bars and clubs that they treat our people with respect because after all regardless of the places we choose to congregate we treat all who enter those establishments with tolerance and an open mind. Until of course we’re given reason not to.   

  • I would think that having a gay bar, you’ve gotta expect that there will be the mix of straights in there as well, just as it is possible for gays to mix in a ‘straight bar.’ I’m sure that all of this is due primarily to bad apples in the basket.

    A good way to solve this would likely be to set aside days in the month to be carded ‘Gay-only days’ or something similar. Set up a club membership, set up dates, and then have these dates only open to members (Or, as mentioned in earlier posts, no cover charge for members) or to those who clearly support the LBGT movement (Shirts and other clothing). Or, hell, if some people are just bad apples, set up a black list.

    If a person is having trouble with the crowd that’s coming to their favorite bar, take it up with the management. Don’t go off and complain, you’re doing no good, period. Give the management some ideas to help, or pick up a night job as a bouncer. Main thing, try to be proactive.

  • @ Adam – I never said to ban anyone – you must remain within the law. For me the only way to make gay bars ‘safe’ is to ‘queer them up’ – more gay ‘art’ on the walls, gay videos on the screens etc. I know of several bars in Barcelona that have notices outside telling people that ‘this is a gay bar where gay stuff happens and if you don’t like that then you should go elsewhere’ – the bar is always full of gays. There are ways of creating safe social spaces for gays without actually actively discriminating against anyone.

    @ Tora – I’m afraid your contention that my argument has nothing to do with the discussion is meaningless (apart from being an attempt to outrightly dismiss me in a blatant act of discrimination and segregation through false logic). I complained to the bar owner who sent security over, I complained several times over several nights due to very aggressive behaviour by both straight men and women – and in the end the bar owner threw me out because he wanted their money. That bar has since closed down. The same man opened a second bar across the city (the one where drinks where spilled on my coat) and that bar has also failed as has a third he opened afterwards. The only venture he has been sucessful at has been a non-gay Tapas bar.

    To try to dismiss me from this discussion with a wave of your hand like that is petty and a blatant attempt to exclude someone for no logical reason except that you don’t agree which is tantamount to fascism.

  • If you read through all the comments there are some recurring themes:

    1. People who say ‘the gay bars’ and ‘the gays’ and who use language about us that makes it sound like we’re pets as opposed to people. This is a serious problem and a lot of well-meaning sincere straights do it all the time. These same straights talk about us as if we need their help to get through life and as if we need them to stoop down to us because we’re so fragile and tortured – this is condescending and places us in the role of helpless victim which is not a good thing.

    2. There are many comments where people are blowing things out of proportion and rushing into what is known as a ‘moral panic’ (look it up) and this isn’t helpful either.

    3. There are many comments where people express that we gays ‘owe’ the world something because A. It was done to blacks. or B. It was done to gays. or something along those lines and therefore we are obliged to be paragons of virtue and tolerance (even if straights are being homophobic to us in our bars). This is patent nonsense – we owe the straight community nothing. Those straights who support us, thanks, but this is the least you can do for us – treat us as equals and don’t expect us to be eternally grateful for something we’re entitled to in the first place.

    4. There is a continual irrational argument going on in some comments that A always equals B and if you do A then you’ll always get C and that’s why we can’t or shouldn’t have A or do A. One thing does not always lead to another, there isn’t always a cause and effect in place and there isn’t always a direct correlation between two things when they’re in a different context. Racial segregation is wrong, period, but if black gay men want a black gay men support group for their particular issues, that isn’t being racist. Likewise, if straight white females who have been raped want a support group that doesn’t allow men in – that’s okay – it’s not sexist.

    5. Gay bars making it difficult for straights to patronise in some way isn’t intolerant – some people in their comments are inflating this issue into apocalyptic proportions (the sky is falling down) – there are numerous examples in society of measures put in place to make it difficult for one person to gain entry while another has a free pass and the most simple proposal is that management of a gay bar have a ‘regulars only’ night or a ‘members only’ night and that security be more proactive and let straight people know that any shenanigans or homophobia won’t be tolerated – and that’s my final point (for now) – intolerance of intolerance is acceptable (think about it).

  • Matthew Fahey

    As a straight man i have been trying to get a shirt made with a slogan that my GF and i use and are working on making videos for a movement “Straight NOT Narrow” as something i could wear into a Gay bar so that i can advertise i am NOT gay, thus no one feels akward talking to me because they know i am just there to drink, meet new friends, and have a good time and support the community. I think if Gay bars encouraged such clothing then the issue would be gone because i could tell if you were gay or straight without risking that i look dumb…Best of luck and whatever gay bars decide is fine with me…just dont get mad if i loiter…supporting a cause is a full time job for me…and meeting the people i support is important to me…

  • Matthew Fahey

    I would just like to apologize…some men can be pigs and as a striaght man i am ashamed of that kind of behavior…

  • Charles Wence III

    Typical woman.

  • D Randy Stokes

    I’ve been to regular bars and kissed my guy and been asked to leave.
    I’ve been to gay bars where straight men make a nuisance of themselves to the women.
    I’ve been to gay bars that don’t allow women so that the men feel comfortable doing as they please.
    All discriminatory. But we all just want a place to safe, right?

  • Corissa Meadors

    There’s one major difference: LGBT people may feel unsafe around straight-cis people because we routinely suffer violence and harassment at their hands. The opposite is not true.

  • Alan Motley

     We are not discriminating at all. Bars in Belltown charge ladies $5 and str8 men $20. We need something to combat keeping a social space for gay men to “Meet” eachother. We have no other place to go… You are not ever going to find 2 gay men dancing and flirting in known str8 bars. I think if ladies don’t feel safe at str8 bars, they need to take it up with those bars. We are not here to police str8 social interactions when we have our own to deal with in limited amounts of space.

  • Danielle

    I am straight, and I love going to the gay clubs with my friends. I have a number of lesbian friends so when I go out with them, we usually end up at one club and watch the drag show. I love the gay clubs not just because I feel “safer” but because the atmosphere is more carefree and fun…with the only real drama going on is caused by my friend and one of her current or ex girlfriends. (ha) I can understand the frustration that the gay community feels with their clubs being over run by straight people when they’re trying to talk to someone. But in a way isn’t this a good thing? Straight people in gay bars has to mean (in most cases) that they aren’t closed minded bigots…right? And the larger the number…I mean right? isn’t that good? 

    Anyway I am not naive, I have seen the big straight guys that were mentioned. One time there was a group of them at S4 in Dallas, they were being rude and pushing everyone, and they pushed my friend Lyndsey, her girlfriend Bekah is about 5 foot nothing and feisty as hell. She tried to take on these giant roid looking guys, so we all kind of had to hold her back…her anger was only intensified when one of the guys called our friend Lyssa a dyke and told her to get out of their faces… We were all so confused as to why people filled with so much hate would be in a place like that.

  • Ashley Valencia

    This article is ridiculous. I feel like there isn’t a problem at all, if there is one then you guys are greatly exaggerating the problem, but either way, keeping any one group out of the bar isn’t going to solve your problems. Its just going to make you come off as a bunch of hypocritical douchebags. If the GLBT community is going to preach openness and acceptance and EQUAL RIGHTS then they’d better practice those things. How about you do what every other bar in the world does? Let everyone in, and kick out the rowdy ones. EVERY BAR, seriously. Or what, you guys just stopped hiring bouncers? 

  • Tora

    The the straights in your gay bar harassing or threatening you? If so, the bouncer/bartender needs to be kicking them out asap. If not, then your argument has nothing to do with the discussion.

  • Alan Motley

    We don’t really need bouncers at gay bars
     

  • Autumn Snō

     Gay men are my heart and I’ll protect them till the end.   -Straight Chick in San Diego

  • Elisa Maria Valbuena Pfau

    I think you suffer from some pretty serious tunnel vision for believing women (gay or whatever) somehow have the better end of the deal by getting repeatedly groped rather than repeatedly met with homophobic comments. 

    It’s annoying to begin my post with something so painfully obvious but…I can’t help it. Many lesbians get met with both physical and verbal harassment. Same as many gay men. So I really don’t understand your argument over who has it worse. Did you figure out some way to quantify or qualify whether it’s lesbians or gay men who have it worse? Please share your methodology in your next post. Enlighten me. 

    Also, like you, the only way I wouldn’t mind getting groped is if it was by a member of the same sex who I found attractive. How happy would you be if some drunk chick grabbed your cock and said she could make you straight? I’m going out on a limb and guessing not. If you were a straight man though…sans that last part…possibly…

    Secondly, there are plenty of straight women who are far from down with the whole lesbian thing and act accordingly. Women have more of a license in this society to move with relative (to men, that is) ease throughout the sexual spectrum but that does not mean we don’t get our fair share of ‘no homo’ like-comments, petty gossip and ostracism. Finally, as for the question in your post, perhaps consider the eharmony example. Eharmony discriminates against gays by keeping them off their site. I have two attitudes about this: 1) Good for them for just discriminating flat out. Seriously. Unlike certain gay establishments for making ridiculous cover charges. I mean, what a message to send. If we want inclusion in heterosexual America, then that means including heterosexual America. Deal. This overt and covert exclusion business sort of reminds of how Yanks think they’re somehow the champions of black civil rights even though they discriminated in different/varying/countless ways against blacks as the South did. Truth is, either way you sliced the pie, it was all equally covered in shit and no white person has a right to an inflated sense of morality. But that’s for another post.2) Personally, discrimination on the part of close-minded heteros is fine with me. If there are a group of people who hate gays so much that they can’t stand the thought of having to click a tab on a search filter or letting gays build profiles they would never search for anyway on the site, then let those bible-beating sub-literate morons remain in their psuedo-Christian bubble and be left behind (if you will) as society moves forward. Some people truly never learn and that’s just how it is. In closing, I do NOT believe gays ought to discriminate against the straights. Close-minded heteros want to exclude us from their community and their method of doing so is the eharmony example. That’s their prerogative. Gays as a community want the opposite–acceptance and societal integration–with the heteros. If we take eharmony’s example (overt or covert…flat out deny them entry or inflate their cover charges) then we obstruct ourselves from the very purpose we fight for. We build barriers and then we have to ask ourselves the basic questions all over again: do we really want acceptance–and all of its pros and cons? Can we deal with a few drunk straights invading our gay dance party? That’s the real question.

  • Anonymous

    Regarding straights in gay bars, during the past few years, I’ve had mostly negative experiences.  The straights I’ve encountered in gay bars seem to view the environment as a freak show.  I’ve also been physically attacked and threatened by straights in a gay bar – i.e. once without warning a guy punched me in the back to amuse his girl friend who apparently thought my getting knocked to the floor was hysterical.  When I didn’t respond to another woman who was trying hit on me telling me I could change if I tried, she went and told her boyfriend I wasn’t being respectful to her and he came over and wanted to beat the crap out of me for being a fag.  Plus the straight girls who insist that gay men can be forced to go straight and who get their kicks out of using the word fag or the ex-gay types who want to ‘save’ me.  This never happened years ago and now seems to be more of a case of the majority forcing their values and orientation on the minority – that every place must be hetero oriented and the gay thing assimulated and eliminated – going back to pre-Stonewall.  Gone through being immersed in the straight culture thing every single day for years and years  – it’s just nice to have a time out place away from it.  Like being able to invite guests you feel comfortable with into your home and not being forced allow in anyone in who happens to show up at your door.

  • Larry Equality Brandt

    I’m used to it……..”They” call us the Gay Bar, yet the “Gay” people say our nightclub is TOO Gay!

  • Anonymous

    Not sure if anyone has mentioned it  but this discussion totally erases the possibility that alot of these “straight” people are actually bi.  So where are bi people suppose to meet other bi people.  And if anyone says a swingers club, I’m gonna beat the shit out of them.

  • Michael Cooke

    When I was younger, I seem to be a lot less ‘hot’ now I’m over 40, I knew straight women that wanted me to take them to Gay clubs – so they would not be harassed by drunk straight guys. In turn, Straight men started going to Gay clubs so they could hit on the smart straight girls at the Gay bar to avoid exactly them.

    Older, I understand str8 married couples going to Gay dance clubs because it’s ‘clean’ – in theory there is no man or woman at that dance club that would pose a threat to the relationship. And, anyway, Gay clubs tend to have better music.

    As a gay man it is no fun hitting on a hot guy that says he’s straight.

    But there is no solution. One practical value of a Gay bar is to coax closeted gay people out of the closet, and those folks may not identify as Gay at first. The guy that shot me down with a claim of being straight – 3 months later he may have a boyfriend (not you, you weren’t his type).

    What a Gay bar provides, even with infiltration of breeders, is a license to hit on same sex people. If the hot guy is straight in a Gay bar – he better be gracious about turning down offers. My personal problem is that I’m masculine and seem really cool to straight guys in Gay bars – they always want to be my buddy. Not fun if what I want is to jump their bones.

  • Tara A

    I love going to gay bars and will keep going because they have the best music, drink prices are resonable, all though my bum still get grabbed/pinch/touch but instead of drunk guy it is a drunk women.

  • As a recovering hate addict, we shouldn’t judge her based on her experiences at a gay bar. She may have had a bad experience at a non-gay bar, ie. the bartender not getting her drink right. This would keep her beholden to gay clubs. I hope she can get over her fear, non-gay clubs can be just as accepting as gay clubs. 

  • My favorite bars are the gay bars. End of story. Over half of my friends are gay and I enjoy going out with them to dance, drink and have a great time. The music is better, the vibe is better, the people are nicer. All around just a better environment. Yes I am straight, but if I have a woman hit on me I kindly apologize and tell her that i’m straight. I don’t scoff at her or make her feel uncomfortable. I take it as a compliment, actually. But what the girl in the video was saying kind of made me upset. I go there to have fun and be me, because when I go to “Straight bars” I get bumped into, given dirty looks, and have guys with their denim d**ks trying to press up against me. Not my idea of a good time knowing I could have some drunk girl in my face for no reason.

     

  • Amen to that!!

  • Ashlee Belle

    And just where exactly does a lesbian transsexual female fit in to this argument?  The club I’ve been going to is quick to weed out and remove ANYBODY causing trouble, and if they are straight they are usually publicly humiliated to make the point that “THEY” are the minority guest in this environment.  Honestly I have little to no interest in going to a straight club.  Even if I were in to men I wouldn’t want to have to deal with the dangers of dealing with them before they knew “all about me.”

  • Anonymous

    Start a bisexual club where you don’t have to deal with the homos.

  • Anonymous

    What a patronizing, hateful response to someone else’s real issues.

  • Amanda Roberts

    I’m not a cracker, but I do go to Cracker Barrel..

  • My best friend is straight but, goes into gay bars and has never harassed a single lesbian customer. He’s also quite nice to the gay men in the bar too. The whole stereotype that is projected isn’t every straight man. Just the morons.

  • I would like to read the opposing story on a straight bar charging $20 for gay entry. Guaranteed there would be a petition drafted.
    Above all, we all want to be welcome as human beings. There are plenty of people at bars, gay or straight, who I’m not interested in. It’s not that heartbreaking to have someone simply say that they’re not interested. Maybe they’re not interested because you’re blonde. Maybe it’s because you’re not tall enough. Maybe it’s because they’re straight.
    It just seems like a really slippery slope to me. And totally hypocritical. Sure, having to weed out straight people is mildly annoying, but… enough to actually suggest being exclusive in this way? 
    I’m so not behind it.

  • Alex Wiley

    Sometimes a news article should contain news. 

  • It wouldn’t even have to be just for straight people: the marker could just be a button that says, “Not looking” and then it would be for straight people, partnered people, or anyone not looking to hook up. 

  • One of the bars in Edmonton AB had it almost right. At one point you could only get in with a membership or if you were a guest of the member. A membership cost $5.

    So make a membership cost the same as cover. If you want to get in as a member you pay a one time fee for membership and then half the cover charge. Everyone else pays full cover (high enough to discourage people who are likely to just want to cause trouble.) Anyone can buy a membership but they have to provide personal info.

    No one is discriminated against, and creates a safer feeling environment for those that truly want to be there.

    I gotta say, the worst is the straight guys who go to watch us lesbians make out. It’s creepy and gross and makes me feel like I need a shower stat.

  • Brian

    Your story is the EXACT same as with me and my girlfriend. Also, this article is horribly hypocritical. The whole thing can be flipped around where a girl can be hitting on one of my gay friends in a non-gay bar and my friend says, sorry, “no hetero”. This article is advocating a sad, boring, disgusting world with even more segregation. I love my gay friends and I love the gay community.

  • Noel Dolan
  • Deanna St.Croix

    But the same can be said when it applies to lesbian bars. Even though there are a ton of gay bars to go to, there is really only one bar for lesbians to go to, and it is more than half full of gay men. The situation goes both ways.

    LBT women needs to have safe place to go as well. The solution would be to open more bars for women – not toss the men out.

  • James M. Davis

    Oh for f’s sake, all of the commenters moaning about inclusion, segregation and discrimination need to take a breath.  I don’t think the poster or anyone with a bit of common sense think they are talking about the friends of a LGBT person going to the club with them.  The poster is talking about the gaggle of girls who show up at a gay club, often times a bachelorette party, and the straight men who are in tow.  It is these groups who often times destroy the vibe of a club.  Oh and make no mistake every club straight or gay no matter the coast, or middle looks to create appeal by establishing a specific vibe.  

  • James M. Davis

    Oh for f’s sake, all of the commenters moaning about inclusion, segregation and discrimination need to take a breath.  I don’t think the poster or anyone with a bit of common sense think they are talking about the friends of a LGBT person going to the club with them.  The poster is talking about the gaggle of girls who show up at a gay club, often times a bachelorette party, and the straight men who are in tow.  It is these groups who often times destroy the vibe of a club.  Oh and make no mistake every club straight or gay no matter the coast, or middle looks to create appeal by establishing a specific vibe.  

  • Straight bars do the same, they usually let women in for free or for a low cover charge and men have to pay from 15$ to 20$

  • Does it have to be bars?  What about tea shops or cafes?

  • Millie Lyles

    I’m a straight woman who clubs with my straight GF (we’re both married so not interested in the straight singles’ scene). I can understand the concern of attracting straight men and disrupting the environment… but I live in the south lol.. so it’s going to be rare to find a straight man who would infiltrate a gay bar. I totally see how it could be a problem in other gay communities. 

  • Jordan Ward

    Clicked on this link coming from the “Tracy Morgan” story…Had absolutely no idea I was ruining y’all’s bars with my dorky hetero vibe.  I’ll make sure to stay far away from now on.

    Y’all are still welcome to “gay up” my favorite bars, of course.  Wouldn’t want to discriminate, eh?

  • I wish this was my rant altogether!!! I went to a Great Gay bar once and it was one that you had to have a Membership to, as in you had to sign up and pay for a card and everything and then buy drinks that cost more than my car payment, and when I asked a girl there to dance, she looked at me and said, “uhhh, I’m here with my boyfriend just trying to figure out what you gays do!!” Seriously, what we do?? I am a science experiment now?? WTF??? I asked her if she had been properly instructed on how to “GET HOSED!!!” and explained that the entrance also worked, remarkably, as an EXIT!!! UUUGGGHHH!!! the Peanut Gallery

  • Sarah ‘Dollface’ Young

    I’m just going to point out that this is, in fact, discrimination…I can say as a bi woman I go to whatever bar has the best music, often it is the gay bars…and let me tell you, gay men can be greatly more aggressive than straight men, a large amount more grabbing and pulling at your clothes,  often thinking it’s ok cause they “like boys”.  no where is safe for women, and charging them more is ridiculous. the whole concept is sexual discrimination all over the place…charging 5 dollars vs 20 is a clear way simply to keep women out, gay or straight, I wouldn’t feel comfortable in a place like that because I would simply feel as though I wasn’t wanted there (which is probably more true than false)…I don’t think that the hate that bigoted hetero’s have thrown at the gay community should be thrown at women (gay straight or otherwise). A drunk idiot is going to act up and destroy the vibe, regardless of gender or orientation…drunk and stupid is simply that

  • Well another comment I left, that included a link, was deleted so I’ll simply state what it was about:

    The situation has gotten so bad in some parts of Australia that one gay bar has had to go to the courts (just last week) to preemptively get permission to refuse some straight women entry because these women are claiming that they can ‘straighten’ gay men. It is a serious problem that needs to be discussed and dealt with.

  • Ciara Phillips

    This is utterly ridiculous. Discriminating against people just to get back at them is childish.
    Not only that, but as a femme pansexual, I enjoy being able to go to a gay club with my gay friends and not have to be either groped, or have guys drool on me when I ask some hot girl to dance. I look so straight that I could march down Castro wearing nothing but a pride-flag and guys would still hit on me… being able to go to a club where it’s not a sexual fantasy for most of the patrons to see me holding a girlfriend’s hand is delightful. However, that doesn’t mean I’m willing to ban straight people from being in the club- maybe they’ll try something new and realize they aren’t as “straight” as they previously imagined.

  • Jason Vajgrt

    It’s sexist douchebags that do that shit…makes me flat out ill…not to say I can’t enjoy a female form, but I’m not bumping and grinding on it. 

  • Musicien Américain

    Gay bars are less and less fun to go to these days, mostly because of the influx of Messy Girls. You know the kind: the ones who want to go somewhere where they can get completely shitfaced and not wake up pregnant the next day. Sorry, providing straight women an arena in which to get drunk and to act out inappropriately is not what any gay bar should be about. And you Messy Girls certainly do act out! Is it perhaps the “artistic” vibe of the gay bar that makes you want to demonstrate your jeté and pirouette piquée until the drinks of all your nice, tolerant gay friends have crashed to the floor? (Of course, Messy Girls are never decent enough to offer to replace your drink, now splashed all over Splash. Instead they glare at you for being in the way of their reenactment of a hauntingly bad junior-high ballet recital.) And is there something about my ass that makes it appealingly pinchable to you Messy Girls? Does it bear a “Messy Girls, please pinch this ass” sign? If I pinched your ass and spilled your drink and rambled incoherently – as you Messy Girls do at length about how you love your gay friends for being so “artistic and such good decorators” and other such offensively pseudo-accepting nonsense – would you be happy? Alas Messy Girls are almost always brought in by Messy Gays tripping on an alphabet soup of whatever their pusher is pushing. If we could just convince all the Messys to go to one circle of Hell and annoy one another instead of ruining the fun of all the truly fun people, the world would be a better place for sure.

  • Jason

    I’m straight and I go to GLBT clubs because my brother and a lot of my friends are gay and their clubs are more free spirited, fun, play better music and have a more eclectic group of people. They go to straight clubs with me too and I would have a big problem if a predominantly straight club told them they couldn’t come in because they’re gay and a gay man grabbed a mans ass last week. Their presence would make it unsafe for straights. Sounds stupid right? If that scenario happened it would make headlines on Unicorn Booty. You must realize that it works both ways. Unfortunately we all are judged by the worse of our sexual preference. As far as straight women finding a safe place to dance… My gay friends always have to put these ladies in check because the women are all over them. If a straight guy disrespected a lesbians space like that he would rightfully get knocked the f…k out.

  • this article pisses me off. I’m straight and go to gay bars when i can find one. Not because i need a safe place to drink and have fun, but because i enjoy the vibe and i like the company!

  • Drake

    did you take your sample from the bars patrons?  Because if you did, that is probably the cause of your result.  Those of us who do not want to be in bars with straight people stop patronizing bars when the straights start coming in.  That means that the people who would disagree with your study’s claims would have self-selected out of the test group.

  • Billy Kornacki

    IMHO, if you don’t like the crowd that goes to the local gay bars, then don’t go yourself. I used to be a drag queen in several Ohio gay bars. I got tired of the drunk people in general. I loved the attention performing got me, and the tips, but I hated the drunk straight guys, drinks spilled on dresses and gowns that cost me several hundred dollars, and just the overall trash that the bars became. I also hated seeing non gay-friendly straight people in the bars.  I hated seeing a ton of straight girls in the bars and one other big thing I hated STRAIGHT MALE STRIPPERS IN A GAY BAR. Basically, I got so tired of all the “straight” things going on in what were supposed to be gay bars that I quit going. I have my friends and we have our fun at our homes, or we all go on outings together. It’s much easier to talk then anyway, without the music blasting our ear drums out. 
    The point is, I removed myself from the situation, rather than trying to make someone else change what brings them money. Although I do like the idea of “Gaying up” the gay bars to kind of deter the straight people from coming in. 
    I will say this much though: I do not have a problem with straight people going to a gay bar with their gay friends. To me, in that instance their “gay” got them in. But I don’t much like the idea of straight girls going together just because they don’t want straight men bothering them. If the guy is working your nerve, stomp his damn foot with your 6 inch heels and walk away. They should open “girls-only” clubs. Then the girls could have somewhere to go, with the only men allowed in being the bouncers, the cops, and the bartenders. Cuz really, if I were a straight girl tired of being bothered by men, that’s where I’d rather go. Then I would have some eye candy that would also not be available because they work for the bar (which means no catfights over who gets to take the guy home) and said eye candy would also be fun for fantasy because I would at least have the idea that he was straight, rather than a gay guy. Speaking of, really??? What the hell is up with these straight girls trying to get in the gay boy’s pants? That works my last gay nerve. My penis is allergic to you. Don’t touch it!!!!

  • Drake

    Amen, our local gay bars don’t have bouncers.  Or at least, they didn’t, until the bachelorette parties and entourage started showing up and taking over.  Now there are uniformed police officers there too.  The first time I got frisked going into my local gay bar was the last time I set foot in the place.

  • I understand the irrational fear that str8 men have when gay men hit on them because I used to be str8 until I discovered transwomen/crossdressers and that heterosexuals bore me. That irrational fear is of ACTUALLY (oh–hor-rors) being seduced by a gay hottie (they’re rare, but WOW!). And that once they try it they’ll like it (like Liz Taylor said in ‘Butterfield-8’). You will. And yes, you’ll really find str8 women as boring as they actually are. (Polyamorous Bi-women, on the other hand, never cease to amaze).

  • Allison Scott

    As a lesbian, 1) I don’t want a dude to hit on me, really I’m gay for that reason, though the others are that I only like to bang ladies or date and be romantic with ladies 2) I get really pissed that guys think it’s alright to hoot and hollar if I make out with a lady, as if it were for them. This pisses me off to no end and it’s down right disrespectful and rude! So no it’s not easier being a lesbian, in fact when a guy does this, it’s a little sexist to be quite honest, as though the only reason a woman would do that is for a man! Having said this, I really don’t have a problem with straight people coming in, I have more straight friends than gay ones so these are usually the places we hit up! I think it would be a little hypocritical of us to say, No heteros yo! We don’t want them to exclude us from a “straight” club, so why would we do it ourselves? Yeah it can be a little annoying when you go to hit on a chick and she’s totally straight, but you also have to think that not everybody who goes to gay bars are totally gay or straight. Don’t forget about people who are bisexual and trans, they usually don’t feel comfortable hanging out at a straight club so they go to gay bars! I also like clubs that have gay men and lesbians mixed in there. I have more gay guy friends than anything else, even though I’m a lesbian. Also my sister is straight and so is her husband, I want to go to a place where I won’t get annoyed or feel intimidated by others while we hang out. I think it’s silly to have it just gay people when that is just very sad a limiting! 

  • Nevermind

    What does that have to do with anything? 

  • onegayguy

    What a complete generalization. “They just seem to be a much more open-minded, liberal, fun-loving crowd and we completely love them”.

    BARF.

  • onegayguy

    I agree. And I’m tired of being eye-raped by aggressive straight women who apparently can’t get laid or find the idea of sex with a gay guy to be erotic.  BARF

  • onegayguy

    I think we should do the same for straight women and many gay men. They’re eligible too. 

  • onegayguy

    If women want a place where they can be free of aggressive men, open your own STRAIGHT WOMEN ONLY bars and leave us gays alone! Sorry, but coming into a gay bar in large droves and then acting as if you own the joint, doesn’t garner my sympathy for you. And take your Bachelorette parties someplace else!

  • AGuyNamedJames

    The situation you’re describing sounds unpleasant, but the presence of a few straight people was never any problem when I was going to gay bars (I’ve aged out of it), and presumably there are other gay bars in Portland where it STILL isn’t a problem, so isn’t this a self-correcting mechanism? Can’t the gay men who are being made nervous, or sick of having drinks spilled on them, simply go someplace else?

  • Charlain

    I am a gay man who has traveled to Portland several times and gone out to the gay bars on most of my trips. I have been to most of the gay bars in Portland, and I never felt any of the places were “overrun” by straight people. A gay bar is a gay bar because of the spirit of the place, not because it engages in some lame and unlawful (in Oregon and many other states and cities) attempt to ban straight people.

    You can find obnoxious people anywhere, and straight people by no means have cornered the market on bad behavior. In fact, all of my very worst experiences in gay bars as far as being subjected to rude and obnoxious behavior has been from gay men. I have dealt with bitchy/catty attitudes, numerous aggressive and unsolicited advances (usually from guys who were super drunk to boot), general rude behavior like pushing and shoving, and just downright crazy and threatening behavior.

    In my opinion, some drunk girls trying to dance in stiletto heels and spilling a few drinks truly does not seem like a big deal. The only thing that you described that sounds bad is the drunk straight guys hitting aggressively on girls (though, unfortunately, some drunk gay guys do the same thing to other gay guys who are not interested in them).

    When you go out, you should just focus on having fun and not worry so much about what others are doing, unless their behavior is way out of line. If someone is really behaving inappropriately (like aggressively hitting on someone and not taking “no” for an answer, or fighting, etc), then either intervene if it is safe to do so or promptly report them to the bar’s employees so they can be thrown out or the police can be called. Anything else should be ignored.

    Also, if you really are not feeling the vibe of a bar, you can always leave and go somewhere else. There is no rule that you have to stay in a place you don’t like and feel bitter and aggrieved all night long. Playing the victim is very boring.