6 words the LGBTQ+ community has reclaimed

There are a million words to define the LGBTQ+ community (both good and bad), here are the words they've made their own again.

pride flag flying in the wind, words the LGBTQ+ community has reclaimed

In this day and age, you feel like you have to be politically correct all the time otherwise you are going to get cancelled. So what about the words the LGBTQ+ community uses? Is it alright to say queer now? Which words are offensive? Don’t worry, because here are six words the LGBTQ+ community has reclaimed as their own.


According to the internet, ‘queer’ first became an anti-gay slur during the trials of Oscar Wilde. ‘Queer’ got rebranded in the ’90s during the AIDS crisis. “We’re here, we’re queer” became a protest mantra. Many of today’s youth view ‘queer’ as a term defining all non-straight, non-binary identities.


‘Twink’ defines a slender, less hairy, typically younger gay man. Many gay men will say ‘twink’ was never a slur, just as the community uses terms like ‘bear’ for sex/dating purposes, not to demean or oppress.


‘Queen’ is the poster child of slur reclamation. The word on its own is the most widely known power term in the LGBTQ+ community, one that has made a significant social leap into mainstream pop culture. (See ‘YAASSS QUEEN!!’)


A slur that was used against feminine gay men, but now many wear this word with pride. And many have this type of flower in their back garden.


The word originates in the 1930s when the ‘nance,’ or Nancy Boy, was a gay burlesque character who brought giggles and belly laughs as he pranced about the stage, creating campy scenes and sketches of gay life. Today, you can find bedazzled shirts and fanny packs on Etsy proudly stating: ‘Nancy Boy’.


‘Fairy’ is an old-school antigay dig that has been stripped of its power by the Radical Faerie movement and new-era queers. The faerie community is a smaller subgroup within the larger community that celebrates diversity, self-expression, gender fluidity, spiritualism, and sexual openness. The faerie movement was started by Harry Hay, one of the most influential queer activists in history. ‘Fairy’ may have been a slur, but today it’s a badge of pride.

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