Friday, November 13, 2020

Gender Schmender

We know that diversity is king.

We know that genetic diversity produces the healthiest offspring in mammals.

We know that diverse interests produce the most intelligent minds and emotional health and neuroscientists understand why.

We know that biodiversity is key to the biosphere and the potential survival of every doom-pointed mammal (all of us) on this crippled paradise of a planet.

We know that cultural diversity breeds cultural health and understanding and shines light on the darkest bleakest xenophobic redneck minds.

And I know - I know - how diversity in personal style avails joy and celebration in living every day. As such I don't care what you do with your clothes and your hair and your skin paint and your bits, bobs and bangles. Just do what you want, regardless of your sex. Whether you look like a boring traditional male or traditional female or somewhere in between, just please follow your inklings and be original. Be yourself. I won't judge you. Why the hell would I? What could I possibly have to lose?

We know that little girls and little boys are virtually identical in their gender-role-based interests until such a time as adults begin to impart arbitrary traditional roles upon them.

So if you want to "identify" as a male or female or neither or something in between then please do! Think of yourself the way you are inclined to think of yourself, by all means! And express it any way you're inclined.

And I will think of you how I am inclined to think of you, by all means, though I won't care about it.

For goodness sakes try to be a strong. I know it must not be easy sometimes, but looking for help by dictating pronouns is a dangerous game. If you're a close friend and you talk about yourself in such a way that my instinctive view of your gender changes then I will fall into line. I have a friend who went through a full surgical transformation and I no longer think of her as "he" and I instinctively refer to her as she. It just happens. She is very feminine in appearance. And I have other friends whose appearance does not convey to me one role or another very strongly, and so I think of them as I always have since my first impression when we first met.

I don't actually give a damn about the label; it's just instinctive and the only reason it comes to light whatsoever is because of language. There is no genderless form of the words he or she. Them is plural in most contexts. And pronouns are not words we think about when we talk. They pop out instinctively. But he and she means the same damn thing. Can we please learn to think of them as interchangeable? Instead of using them as affirmation? They are a shit tool for affirmation. Can we please not use them to test people? Trying to constantly think about pronouns when speaking is a matter of exhausting mental gymnastics.

When I say he or she it is not a reflection of what you are. It is a reflection of which way I instinctively interpret you lean. And if my interpretation differs from yours, so what? It's just me being honest about something completely void of importance to me. It is not an insult. That doesn't mean that your struggle isn't important to me. There are just other ways I will demonstrate that.

Our language has flaws. It has always been imprecise. We must do our best to communicate effectively, clearly, accurately prior to using language as a tool to show how nice we are.

Not too long ago I visited a drive-through and the person who handed me my lunch had the most beautiful appearance - in my own subjective view of course - that I have ever perceived at first sight. So beautiful. Stunning. Breath-taking. I was unnerved. It was almost tragic. I dearly wanted to linger and to ask this gorgeous creature if I could take them out for dinner. I wanted to know all about this person. I wanted to look at that face. I have no certainty if it was a girl or a boy under that hair and those clothes. If I had to bet I would say she was probably - either currently or originally - anatomically a boy but I really did not care. I did not want in her pants either way; only to bask in her light. This was a surprising experience. I never would have predicted this. And if we went to dinner I would not care what clothes or hair this person showed up in; which gender tradition they presented. I drove away feeling very very sad that such a joyful admiration could not be expressed because I was too scared to challenge our piece of shit societal expectations and superstitions.

Diversity is king.

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