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#1 jow

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Posted 25 February 2010 - 10:50 PM

So I keep reading posts where people reply talking about talking to local groups and just generally referring people back to it (now that I've decided to do this I can't find any examples, classic me...).

I also had a conversation with a friend of mine and she said that they should put us in the acronym and make it LGBTAA or something.

It seems to me that this is lumping eerything 'not straight' together in the 'other' category, but what about heteroromanticism? And I don't know, but I don't feel very comfortable with the idea somehow...

So what is the relationship between the two, and what are people's views on it?

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#2 Zachary

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Posted 25 February 2010 - 11:16 PM

I'm asexual and heteroromantic. I haven't spoken to any of my friends that are members of LGBT, mostly because I'm only out among a few people right now (and growing every day :) ), but as a heteroromantic I identify myself as straight.

To me, it seems like there are two big categories: asexuality and sexuality. LGBT deals with certain subsets of sexuality, not asexuality. I'm sure they would make a place for us if we asked, and I'm certain that aromantics, biromantics, and homoromantics are probably much more interested in joining LGBT groups.

#3 prettyeyes

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Posted 25 February 2010 - 11:37 PM

Yeah, I can see how that would be a problem. I think maybe it should be LGBTQ, the Q standing for "queer" in general, which could include a/pan/bi/homoromantic asexuals (And heteroromantics as well if they feel they fit into it), pansexuals, and those who have seperate romantic and sexual orientations.

#4 Shi

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Posted 25 February 2010 - 11:46 PM

I have absolutely no sense of connection with the LGBT community. To me, they're just as foreign as any other type of sexual, and to be linked with them would trivialize the dramatic difference between asexuality and any other orientation. As Zachary said, there are basically two categories - asexual and sexual. All of LGBT should sooner be grouped with heterosexuals than Aces.

#5 PiF

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Posted 26 February 2010 - 12:09 AM

The association with lgbt comes up pretty regulary

some feel that as a minority we should and could promote ourselves better by allying with the lgbt and come under the gay umbrella

others..like myself..feel the association will label asexuals as a gay organisation and that is harder to get away from if we did join

My feeling is that if you are gay,trans etc then by all means join if you wish the lgbt..

but to say the lgbt represents all asexuality when so many asexuals are not even gay, trans etc sends the wrong message

and before theologens start with ...we are all queer...your talking bolloxs

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#6 Kelly

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Posted 26 February 2010 - 12:19 AM

To me, it seems like there are two big categories: asexuality and sexuality. LGBT deals with certain subsets of sexuality, not asexuality. I'm sure they would make a place for us if we asked, and I'm certain that aromantics, biromantics, and homoromantics are probably much more interested in joining LGBT groups.

And yet the T in LGBT has nothing to do with sexuality--it is purely a gender issue.

I note that a good number of A folk are T, and vice versa, though. Interesting.

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#7 Bero

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Posted 26 February 2010 - 02:17 AM

To me, it seems like there are two big categories: asexuality and sexuality. LGBT deals with certain subsets of sexuality, not asexuality. I'm sure they would make a place for us if we asked, and I'm certain that aromantics, biromantics, and homoromantics are probably much more interested in joining LGBT groups.

That's an interesting perspective. I'm aromantic, and that's one of the reasons why I haven't gotten very involved with my campus' LGBT group. I support people's varying sexual and romantic orientations, but since I don't experience or fully understand either, I feel like I'm in more of the "ally" position and would be out of place in that regard, because I just can't relate. I recently met another aromantic asexual at school, and when we talked about LGBT involvement (since we met through the LGBT director), sie agreed with my feeling that we're kind of in a nebulous place. I'm curious what other aromantics think about this and what their experiences with LGBT groups have been like.
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#8 Kathlyn

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Posted 26 February 2010 - 04:13 AM


To me, it seems like there are two big categories: asexuality and sexuality. LGBT deals with certain subsets of sexuality, not asexuality. I'm sure they would make a place for us if we asked, and I'm certain that aromantics, biromantics, and homoromantics are probably much more interested in joining LGBT groups.

That's an interesting perspective. I'm aromantic, and that's one of the reasons why I haven't gotten very involved with my campus' LGBT group. I support people's varying sexual and romantic orientations, but since I don't experience or fully understand either, I feel like I'm in more of the "ally" position and would be out of place in that regard, because I just can't relate. I recently met another aromantic asexual at school, and when we talked about LGBT involvement (since we met through the LGBT director), sie agreed with my feeling that we're kind of in a nebulous place. I'm curious what other aromantics think about this and what their experiences with LGBT groups have been like.

well I haven't spent much time with LGBTQ groups, but I don't think I would fit in. my one experience was at a party (so they were all drunk, I was sober) and they were comparing the type of dick they like. and a few other things like that. (talk about surprising conversations). I think we might get labled under "Q"/questioning not "Q"/queer by the general population.
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#9 Sans

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Posted 26 February 2010 - 06:31 AM

I have mixed views on this. First off, I worry that by joining the LBGT umbrella, we will only foster the "straight or gay" mentality everyone has. Now, I can see how homoromantics and biromantics could benefit from this to some extent. Also, the more we help foster gay-straight relationships, the better our status in society will grow. And by piggy backing with a larger organization, we can get our status out. I think a lesbian friend said it best: "Asexual can be the black lining on the rainbow." She was referring to the fact in the art, most people use an outline and then proceed to fill it in with color. I still think it is perfect. We are not the normal, so in that way we fit in with the LBGT crowd. However, not being sexual we need some difference.

#10 Joshua

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Posted 26 February 2010 - 07:13 AM

I have absolutely no sense of connection with the LGBT community. To me, they're just as foreign as any other type of sexual, and to be linked with them would trivialize the dramatic difference between asexuality and any other orientation. As Zachary said, there are basically two categories - asexual and sexual. All of LGBT should sooner be grouped with heterosexuals than Aces.



Agree totally.

#11 Floor

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Posted 26 February 2010 - 08:17 AM

I'm new to the community and all, but I don't really feel like I fit in with the LGBT crowd. Asexuality is pretty often identified as 'queer', which is fine; if others want to consider me queer, I have no issue with that, but I don't feel like I fit in in the community. I feel very strongly about LGBT rights, but the culture within seems inherently sexual, which is fine, but it's weird to fit aces in with that. I guess.

#12 michaeld

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Posted 26 February 2010 - 08:55 AM

[sorry, duplicate]

#13 michaeld

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Posted 26 February 2010 - 08:57 AM

My feeling is that if you are gay,trans etc then by all means join if you wish the lgbt..

And for those of us who are straight asexual, not trans and still wish to be part of the LGBT umbrella?

but to say the lgbt represents all asexuality when so many asexuals are not even gay, trans etc sends the wrong message

The LGBT movement does not represent all homosexuals, all bisexuals or all trans people, let alone all asexuals. It only represents those of us who wish to be included.

#14 thecoldground

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Posted 26 February 2010 - 09:45 AM

My view is that we should have an FAQ for this sort of thing :)

It's going to happen no matter what my opinion is, or anyone else's - universities are adding asexuality to the LGBT groupings, I've seen teen websites with asexual headings, there's the Queer Youth Network in the UK, for example (http://www.queeryouth.org.uk), which is completely accepting, among others which have a place for asexuality, and as you mentioned, a lot of people just lump us in because they think "minority in some way related to sex." I don't really mind that too much.

I think it's a very positive thing, I've got personal experience of how asexuality being under a little umbrella is a positive. I think there's a lot of misunderstanding as to what it's all about, not to mention a disproportionate level of emotion from some asexuals who have no involvement with anything to do with any LGBT organisation, or understanding of what it means.

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#15 Eras

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Posted 26 February 2010 - 10:02 AM

The issue is this: not all asexuals identify as queer. I personally think we should individually be able to choose if we want to associate ourselves with the GLBT
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#16 arapanasati

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Posted 26 February 2010 - 12:00 PM

I think the problem lies in the ambiguity of the LGBT group itself. They try to be excepting of so many minorities, not just sexual orientations. Their acronym has become 10+ letters at times. They should either change it to be simply LGB or change it to something more all encompassing that doesn't have to consist of 10+ letters. There is a great thread about this same topic in the controversial topics forum that has some wonderful suggestions.

#17 PiF

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Posted 26 February 2010 - 03:02 PM


My feeling is that if you are gay,trans etc then by all means join if you wish the lgbt..

And for those of us who are straight asexual, not trans and still wish to be part of the LGBT umbrella?

but to say the lgbt represents all asexuality when so many asexuals are not even gay, trans etc sends the wrong message

The LGBT movement does not represent all homosexuals, all bisexuals or all trans people, let alone all asexuals. It only represents those of us who wish to be included.


Michael your 1st question is answered by your second

the lgbt is almost wholly run and complemented by sexuals irrelevent of thier personal situation so how that group as sexuals relates to us "as a group" of non sexuals is beyond me and many asexuals

if we try to come under the umbrella of the lgbt as an organisation you will make coming out even more harder

imagine an asexual going to thier parents and saying..mum dad I'm asexual..then not suprisingly they will say so your gay then..as many do now and you say no I'm hetro..to which again they would say you must be gay your part of lgbt

whatever way you dress it up..if you align a non sexual organisation along with a sexual one the association will stick and muddy the waters even further

ask gay asexuals the difficulty they feel in explaining how they are asexual whilst associating with a sexual group

argue the logistics, theories..what should not be and is

the truth is..we are asexual..non sex...and to align with ANY group that is sexual would do more damage than good..and would confuse more than it would help

I would also point out that it's quite clear my issue is with the organisational and representational side of asexuality and it NOT being part of the lgbt...what individuals do is upto them

have we had a poll before asking members if they think an alignment with lgbt would be a good or bad thing?

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#18 bristrek

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Posted 26 February 2010 - 03:43 PM

Well, I figured we weren't, exactly, under the LGBT umbrella. Not per se, some of us might be if we're homo/bi/panromantic feel that is a place we belong anyway. But asexuality itself is probably more like... a sister group. There is overlap, and it is similar with in some ways similar issues but at the same time it is different. And I don't know how I feel about claiming the LGBT umbrella..... like maybe I'm a fraud. And I'm demi-biromantic.



I do think there should be links between the two, and given that there is little real world presence of asexual groups but there are real world LGBT ones it makes sense that many of us hang with them on campus and so on so forth.



ETA: And here is a thought. It may depend on what you identify first and foremost, your romantic orientation or your sexual one. Those who identify mostly through the first probably feel they'd fit in more. Maybe?

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#19 PiF

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Posted 26 February 2010 - 04:53 PM

I see your point bris

certianly if you identify as a gay, trans etc person who happens to be asexual then you may feel the gay/trans side is a more natural association with lgbt than say asexuality

my point is that a substantial amount of asexuals identify as straight/hetro people who happen to be asexual so to be represented by the lgbt would not be a true reflection of who they are

but I still stand by my main objection to being part/represented as a group by the lgbt given that lgbt is a sexual group and we are asexual..non sex

you may as well align ourselves with porn stars because like lgbt most are sexually active

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#20 unicorn3

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Posted 26 February 2010 - 05:02 PM

To me, it seems like there are two big categories: asexuality and sexuality. LGBT deals with certain subsets of sexuality, not asexuality. I'm sure they would make a place for us if we asked, and I'm certain that aromantics, biromantics, and homoromantics are probably much more interested in joining LGBT groups.

And yet the T in LGBT has nothing to do with sexuality--it is purely a gender issue.

I note that a good number of A folk are T, and vice versa, though. Interesting.


This. I don't want to be lumped with the LGBT - I'm trans*, yeah, but I'm also asexual and I'm annoyed when I get the label transsexuality instead of transidentity or transgender. As trans-ness is frequently misunderstood anyway (and a good deal of it because of the word transsexuality), I tend to emphasise this strongly and don't really 'connect' with the LGBT-stuff. Nothing wrong with it of course and I've no issues with them but Ido not fit in there either.

#21 unicorn3

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Posted 26 February 2010 - 05:04 PM

I see your point bris

certianly if you identify as a gay, trans etc person who happens to be asexual then you may feel the gay/trans side is a more natural association with lgbt than say asexuality

my point is that a substantial amount of asexuals identify as straight/hetro people who happen to be asexual so to be represented by the lgbt would not be a true reflection of who they are

but I still stand by my main objection to being part/represented as a group by the lgbt given that lgbt is a sexual group and we are asexual..non sex

you may as well align ourselves with porn stars because like lgbt most are sexually active


And this, too.

#22 Shi

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Posted 26 February 2010 - 05:12 PM

I've already stated why I believe it would be a bad idea philosophically, but it's not particularly helpful from a political standpoint either. The LGBT community is a political entity - in part, it exists to facilitate the fight for certain rights, such as same-sex marriage. LGBT has a definite stigma attached to it that has likely kept some of its members out of jobs, schools, religions, and sometimes even families, but the benefit it gains is a unified front for pursuing its political ends.

So, in exchange for the definite stigma that comes from allying ourselves with these sexuals, what do we have to show for it? What political rights have we been deprived that we need a group to fight for? In short, what can the LGBT community actually offer us?

#23 PiF

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Posted 26 February 2010 - 05:41 PM

I feel in my long winded way what I'm trying to say that is whatever your personal direction as an asexual you choose then that's great...for you

As a collective group i.e. asexual, I feel the association as a group with the lgbt would be wrong and in fact do more harm than good as it would not be a true representation of asexuals

also the aligment of a non sexual group with a sexual group (who ever they maybe) is not an alignment that as a group is a correct or a step forward situation

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#24 bristrek

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Posted 26 February 2010 - 05:42 PM

I've already stated why I believe it would be a bad idea philosophically, but it's not particularly helpful from a political standpoint either. The LGBT community is a political entity - in part, it exists to facilitate the fight for certain rights, such as same-sex marriage. LGBT has a definite stigma attached to it that has likely kept some of its members out of jobs, schools, religions, and sometimes even families, but the benefit it gains is a unified front for pursuing its political ends.

So, in exchange for the definite stigma that comes from allying ourselves with these sexuals, what do we have to show for it? What political rights have we been deprived that we need a group to fight for? In short, what can the LGBT community actually offer us?




Well, if we act like a sister group, or an associate group of people that may be the best way to go about it. We had a part in the SF Pride last year didn't we? The main thing that the LGBT movement has that we don't is awareness. For some obvious reasons, they've had to fight for their rights a lot more than we have, and there's more of 'em to boot. They've got more influence too, for exactly those reasons.

If something comes up that one of our number, or an asexual who doesn't even know about Aven comes across... if there's some issue who would they go to? I mean, what groups are there out there set up for that in the real world? There isn't, not really, and theirs is the closest.

And thus why I see them like a sister group. We're related, and deal with people being different around the same 'axis' as it were, that of sexuality and gender, but simply a different sort of manifisation of it than theirs. Yet neither of our groups are the 'norm'.

And thus we should all be friends with each other. And share :cake:.

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#25 PiF

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Posted 26 February 2010 - 05:54 PM

Certianly that's highlighted the difference

firstly the fact the lgbt is a largely sexual organisation..and asexuals largely are non sexuals..so on that we have little or no connection

the other I feel is more deeper

true with events like gay pride as a group the lgbt has been more vocal and out there..but most asexuals have not

most asexuals do not suffer discrimination..ignorance maybe ...but not discrimination to the levels of being gay

I feel most asexuals are people who happen to be asexual and as such see it as part of them and not all of them and so do not feel the need be "out there"

Asexuals generally are not people who want to be on the centre stage

The lgbt does an adequate job of promoting sexual differences within society..we are not sexual

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#26 bristrek

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Posted 26 February 2010 - 06:48 PM

What, cause with gay or bi people, that makes up all of what they are? No. It's a part of them just like asexuality is only a part of us.

There's plenty more to each of us than our sexuality (or lack their of) no matter what that orientation is.



We're not sexual, no. But we are part of that spectrum, part of that 'region' as it were. So we are related. They've had a lot harder time, of course. They've faced not only ignorance but prejudice and violence and rather more crap than we have. Not that we haven't had our own share of crap but it's nothing like what they've gone through in history. Were both of us outside what is seen as the societal norm for this sort of thing. And we can both talk to the world and fight that ignorance, for the sake of both of us. Cause hell, even if it weren't a good thing to do on principle, there's a lot of asexuals who are also directly affected by LGBT issues due to their romantic orientation.

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#27 PiF

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Posted 26 February 2010 - 07:01 PM

there are a lot of other non asexuals that are affected by lifes issues that the lgbt cover but they do not wish to be represented by the lgbt so why would we?

we should belong to them because we are a minority outside of the norm? so are peadophiles, white supremeists, massochists etc but unlike those and the lgbt we are largely non sexual

most people have the same issues but do not go to the lgbt

the distinct difference is just that... a difference..we are non sexual..they are largely sexual..they cannot represent us as a collective

it would be like asking islam to represent christianity...two total opposites surely?

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#28 Siggy

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Posted 26 February 2010 - 07:25 PM

In my experience, much of the LGBT community already considers asexuals to be part of it. Asexuals are by no means a major part of it, but they do belong somewhere in the LGBTQQIAAETC acronym. They are just trying to include everybody, at least in principle. Note that pansexuals are rarely explicitly included in the acronym, because most pansexuals would be satisfied with the B. However, asexuals are often explicitly included precisely because they realize that many asexuals don't fit into L, G, B, T, or Q. Same goes for intersex.

Just because asexuals are included in the extended acronym does not mean that you personally are forced under the umbrella. In fact, even if you're gay, no one can force you to participate. No one can even force you to identify as gay.

People in the LGBT community are more likely than any other group to be aware of asexuality. They've seen it in the extended acronyms, and have read the one-liner definitions. Some of them have met asexuals. The other day, I met another asexual offline for the first time; this was made possible through the LGBT community.

However, for any asexuals who wish to actually join the LGBT community, there is a major issue of focus. There is some major focus on sex and relationships, which may be irrelevant to most asexuals. There's also some focus on politics and rights. Queer rights may be relevant to me as an ally (and everyone should be an ally), but not as an asexual. The focus that is most likely to be relevant is the issue of coming out. Rarely, if ever, do they focus on explicitly asexual topics, unless an asexual (ie me) makes some effort to bring it to their attention.

Even among gays, the focus of the LGBT community can be an issue. For instance, not all gay people are interested in getting married, and some of them resent the recent focus on gay marriage.

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#29 Edward Cullen

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Posted 26 February 2010 - 07:35 PM

I'm hetero-asexual - placing asexuality into the 'LGBT' grouping would simply be excluding the many hetero-asexuals who do not relate to the group. We, as asexuals, have no more affinity with one sexuality than another. If homo/bi-asexuals do, then that's completely understandable, but a blanket definition is wrong and unrepresentitive of the asexual community as a whole.

#30 bristrek

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Posted 26 February 2010 - 09:03 PM

To play devil's advocate - the T for transexual isn't actually a sexual orientation either, it's not a sexuality thing.


That aside -

But yeah, I agree, in general we aren't LGBT. I don't think the people who think we are if you extend the LGBT thing to the really really long name with a few Qs in it, I don't think they're taking away from the romantic orientation no matter what yours is, but more to say our sexual orientation (ie the lack of sexual attraction) isn't part of the societal norm. And see the LGBT--------- to represent, basically, those whose sexual and gender orientation to not fit with that and thus we fit amongst it.


There is overlap between our groups though, as many of our number consider themselves as lesbian/gay/bi asexuals. I know one outside of Aven, or in passing know her, who considers herself as a lesbian who happens to be asexual too. No, I'm not going to pull the "I know x and thus x always equals y" thing, it's true for her though and I've seen others say it. It is how some consider themselves. And for those who see themselves as straight first and asexual after, or heteroromantic asexuals, they may not see themselves as fitting in because of that hetero element and on the more regular usage of LGBT without a line worth of letters after it that's true.


Still, we ARE related. For the exact reason that some put us in with the LGBT------------- group. Because yes, we're not sexual, but that means we aren't the 'norm' and it is on that basis of sexuality. We're like sister or cousin groups, but we're the small one and the one who doesn't get as much shit thrown our way. Though it'd be nice of none of us (from either group) had a bunch of shit thrown our way.


Think of it like this. In America and elsewhere there is a phrase: Freedom of religion. There are also those who say that freedom of religion also means freedom FROM religion. When you talk about religious issues, and that sector of life the atheists pop up, our issues pop up because it's within that sphere. Similarly asexuality is within the sphere of sexuality in as much as we're its black spot. Its absence. And we are related to these other issues around it, one way or another.


Aven is not a part of the LGBT movement. But we're not separate from sexual minority issues because we ARE ONE just by being ace, regardless of the romantic orientation.

INTERNET ERGO SUM
 





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