James Bond walks into a gay bar. But should he?

Actor Daniel Craig, finest identified for taking part in the dashing and decidedly heterosexual James Bond, made headwinds this week when he revealed that he’s an enormous fan of homosexual bars.

“I’ve been going to homosexual bars for so long as I can bear in mind,” Craig, 53, mentioned Tuesday on the podcast “Lunch With Bruce.” “One of many causes: as a result of I do not get into fights in homosexual bars that usually.”

Homosexual bars, Craig added, “would simply be a great place to go. All people was chill — all people. You didn’t actually need to type of state your sexuality. It was OK. And it was a really secure place to be.”

Craig, who has been married to the British actor Rachel Weisz for 10 years, added that he went to homosexual bars in his youth to fulfill single ladies.

The response on-line from the LGBTQ neighborhood was blended.

Many cheered on Craig’s remarks, saying, “There’s room for everybody at our desk.”

“In the event that they’re allies and being respectful I don’t see a difficulty with it,” one consumer wrote on Twitter. “We don’t win assist by telling straight folks they aren’t welcome.”

However others mentioned Craig and different straight folks going to homosexual bars “comes at the expense” of LGBTQ areas.

“If homosexual bars are *full* of straight folks then they are not homosexual bars any extra,” one consumer wrote on Twitter. “Once I was figuring issues out, the protection of two or three lesbian bars/golf equipment in London was so necessary to me. It felt secure as a result of I knew the ladies there have been there for a similar cause as me.”

The controversy over straight folks’s place in homosexual and lesbian bars comes as plenty of LGBTQ bars have closed during the last a number of a long time.

From 2007 to 2019, 37 % of the nation’s homosexual bars closed, in line with a 2019 examine by Greggor Mattson, an affiliate professor of sociology at Oberlin Faculty. Throughout that point, the variety of lesbian bars declined by 52 % and the variety of bars serving LGBTQ folks of shade dropped 59 %, the examine discovered.

Mattson’s analysis moreover confirmed that the nation’s LGBTQ bars have been shutting their doorways at larger charges during the last a number of years: From 2017 to 2019, 14 % of LGBTQ bars closed.

The loss is far higher to the LGBTQ neighborhood than many might imagine, Mattson mentioned.

“In contrast to different communities which have church buildings as their main organizing spot, or have meals locations, now we have bars,” he mentioned. “In lots of elements of the nation … it’s solely within the native homosexual bar the place yow will discover a gender-inclusive restroom or a bulletin board the place LGBTQ+ enterprise house owners are promoting their companies or a bartender who can direct you to a spot to use for an LGBTQ+ pleasant job.”

“After we lose these locations, we lose the face-to-face connections and particularly the prospect encounter with strangers which might be how we as a neighborhood knit ourselves collectively,” Mattson added.

The financial toll of the pandemic has exacerbated the pattern, as small companies of every kind closed final 12 months.

To stave off the closures, Erica Rose and Elina Avenue co-founded the Lesbian Bar Mission, a nationwide effort to assist lesbian nightlife threatened by the pandemic. The fund has raised over $260,000 since 2020 to gasoline assist for the nation’s 21 estimated remaining lesbian bars. 

Rose and Avenue advocate for lesbian bars to be secure areas for everybody, together with straight allies, however fear that generally straight folks go for a “spectacle,” they mentioned.

The ladies, who’re each lesbians, recalled a current outing at a lesbian bar on Fireplace Island, the place they encountered a straight bachelorette get together.

“They have been cheering, they have been excited to see how everybody was reacting, how everybody was dressed, and it felt like they have been coming for the leisure half, prefer it was an unique expertise,” Avenue mentioned.

“Individuals are like fascinated by this type of different tradition whereas that is our on a regular basis lives,” Rose added. “We don’t get to placed on a homosexual hat similar to once we really feel prefer it. We’re queer 24/7, all 12 months spherical, and we’d like areas that shield that.”

Mattson mentioned that whereas he sympathizes with LGBTQ individuals who crave queer-only areas, Craig’s feedback must also encourage straight bars to create much less hostile environments. 

“My intestine intuition was: ‘How unhappy,'” he mentioned. “Sure, the vulnerability of homosexual areas, however how concerning the brokenness of straight bars that even a well-known, buff man doesn’t really feel secure going out?”

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