I started writing this entry after the CNN piece and got sidetracked with life. So I’m editing it and picking it up again with a bit of modification.
Too often we… enjoy the comfort of opinion without the discomfort of thought. — John F. Kennedy.
So the CNN story is up and I have to say, it’s nice to see the different stories they highlighted. There is no single story that represents the trans community. And I’ll give credit to CNN for trying to present a variety of views equally. It’s nice to be seen in a light other than an object.
That said, the comments are just disturbing. JFK’s comment is very apropos as many are giving an opinion about trans “folx” without really understanding what’s involved. I can respect someone who says “I understand all that’s involved but personally, it’s not my cup of tea”. Ok, fine. I can totally get that. It’s the ones like the following that get me:
drag these idiots down the street. I’d rather have beheadings and 9/11 every friday than to listen to this slop.
Uh. What?? Apparently, many of the readers on CNN don’t like it when they are faced with things that make them think. Life is no longer compartmentalized for them into neat little blocks. I watch the MSM (Main Stream Media) and all I see is perfect little lives that are cut-outs and variations of the 1950s. The US seems determined to remain there and ensure that nothing changes from that point to now. It’s interesting that as I re-read this, I noticed an article on CNN today that talks about how that the Supreme Court of Justice (SCOTUS) even without any Protestants on it, will still get some Protestant views on it. Yes, it will be different and moderate comparative to others but the diversity is a good thing.
But for many (especially white Protestant Americans) this means learning to adapt with change. And for many, this is a scary thing. Change is viewed with apprehension and concern as it feels like we are losing something that we’ve known all our lives. So we react to it because the change is done at a pace that we have no control over. What we once know is no longer true. And what once made us unique and special is being divided amongst all these other people we don’t know or understand. It becomes, in the US, “un-American”. What’s curious is that my home country of Canada doesn’t seem to suffer the same kind of malaise. There is no “un-Canadian”. While this doesn’t eliminate discrimination, I wonder if the constant and regular exposure to things that were different allowed for a mellowing of Canadian society compared to the “separation” of US society.
I have a hard time understanding extreme polarization that occurs here in the US and wonder sometimes if it helps to have this. Certainly everyone has the right to their opinion but it doesn’t mean that one needs to voice it in a manner to demean or debase others. We all have the right to our opinions — and the right to live without fear.