Minorities dating with discrimination
In fact, men who used online dating services more frequently were generally more likely to register as racist on the QDI, which might explain why a full 96 percent of the men in the study reported having seen a racially discriminatory profile over the course of their online dating experiences.
For gay men like Eric, 30, who lives in Atlanta, navigating the thorny issues surrounding race in the gay community is a disheartening “day-to-day experience.” (Eric asked that his real name not be used for this article.) Eric, who is mixed-race, told The Daily Beast that some men who list “no Asians” on their dating profiles have messaged him anyway, explaining that he is “white enough” for them or that he is attractive to them because he can “pass” as white.
Or, phrased in a more optimistic way: “Men with more positive attitudes toward racial diversity and multiculturalism (on the QDI) tended to view sexual racism less positively.”This correlation strongly suggests that racial discrimination on gay dating apps can be attributed to racist attitudes and not, as so many maintain, to benign aesthetic preferences.
Sexual racism, it turns out, is probably just plain old racism disguised in the language of desire.“While it may feel like our desires are our own, in reality they are influenced heavily by social norms,” explained Callander.
“For me, the findings of this study are a reminder that even though society and individuals may actively reject racism, racial prejudices are increasingly subtle and they can find their way into even the most private and personal corners of our lives.”The study also found that certain independent factors were associated with higher QDI scores and a more critical stance on sexual racism: a college education, past experience with racial exclusion, identifying as gay, and living in a more sexually diverse neighborhood.
A few clicks put online dating in the rear-view mirror. Regardless of the type of app or site, online dating works better for some than others — a lot better, in fact.Eric confronts these men by asking them to explain in detail why they think he passes, a question that would require them to talk about his physical features in uncomfortable detail. ”“The road to hell is paved with good intentions and ‘I’m not trying to be racist’ does not mean ‘I am not racist,’” Steve told The Daily Beast.Eric’s experience with online dating highlights another troubling possibility raised by the study’s authors, namely, that gay dating services may actually be encouraging men to sort potential partners by race—at least, more brazenly than they would in person. “It just blows my mind that people could write off entire minorities without any exception and not see that as at all problematic.” For his part, Callander would like to see his team’s findings used in “implementation research” that could identify “strategies for reducing sexual racism and changing the way that people think about race and romance.” After all, if racism and sexual racism are indeed linked, then strategies to reduce the former should affect the latter as well.Shocked, Edwards tried to push back on the man’s claim that he wasn’t being racist but he ran up against the same obstacle that many gay men of color face in the world of online dating.
If you’re a gay man, phrases like “no blacks” and “no Asians” aren’t just words that you’d find on old signs in a civil rights museum, they are an unavoidable and current feature of your online dating experience.Respondents were asked whether or not they agreed with statements like “People who indicate a racial preference in their profile are not trying to offend anyone,” and “As long as people are polite about it, I see no problem in indicating a racial preference on my profile.” Remaining “neutral” was also an option.