Irish Drag Queen Panti Bliss took to the stage of Ireland’s national theatre, the Abbey, on February 1 to deliver a powerful speech explaining the effects of homophobia and the oppressive environment antigay attitudes can foster for LGBT people, reports The Bilerico Project.
Bliss’s speech was a response to controversy surrounding comments the performer, also known as Rory O’Neal, made during a January interview with Irish radio station RTE, where he called out a number of newspaper columnists for writing homophobic opinion pieces.
“For the last three weeks, I have been lectured to by heterosexual people about what homophobia is and about who is allowed to identify it. Straight people have lined up... to tell me what homophobia is and to tell me what I am allowed to be oppressed by,” Bliss told the audience at the Abbey. “People who have never experienced homophobia in their lives... have told me that unless I am being thrown into prison or herded onto a cattle truck then it is not homophobia. And that feels oppressive.”
Though Bliss’s speech clocks in at nearly 11 minutes, it’s worth watching in full as she outlines the oppression of heterosexual privilege.