I think I just got political…
I’ve been thinking quite a bit about gender. I’ve mentioned before that I do not believe in the gender binary. I am a trans ally. I think all people of all genders enhance beauty and life. Maybe I’m more contemplative than usual because of an article (more of a long blurb really) in the RedEye yesterday. It featured Chaz Bono (and other people who I don’t know) and mentioned some of the laws and then a trans rally on the 29th (which I’m definitely thinking about going to).
It got me thinking. Wouldn’t it be great if we could try on different genders – see how it feels, take the bits that you like from one, couple it with what you like from another, and create your own unique gender expression that feels like home. What if I decided, tomorrow, I will present as a man? In my reality, it would be potentially dangerous – I work with all men, 95% (if not more) of my customers are men and I work in the automotive field. But what if I could? Would I feel free? Would it feel further confining? Would it feel just as terrible as being forced to wear that stupid “stewardess scarf” from my last job? Would I gain insight?
Just think for a moment how awkward, possibly humiliating, and uncomfortable it would be for you to be out in public being called sir when you know deep down you’re a woman or being called Miss or Ma’am when you scream inside that you’re a man. It’s not that they’re confused – it must be that you’re confused.
I am quite comfortable in my skin. I am a chick. I just happen to prefer wearing guy’s clothing. I don’t want to be thought of as a man, but if I did… wouldn’t it be my right to present as one? Wouldn’t it be my right to expect a work environment relatively safe and as free from harassment as possible? Yet, our current sets of laws don’t really allow for that. Massachusetts is probably the most progressive state in the country with its anti discrimination laws and same-sex marriage rights. I suppose, I’d consider moving back to Boston if that were the case. Yet, why should I have to move a thousand miles away just so I wouldn’t be harassed?
We need state and federal laws protecting the transgender community. But this isn’t just a trans problem. This is for all of society. If we can’t protect and respect all persons, then we have a much bigger issue.