Twitter is a breeding ground for really horrible discourse. Really just awful. If you can challenge yourself to have intellectual conversations with people in Twitter, more power to you, give it a real shot. It’s totally doable, but boy is it hard.
One interesting hashtag I follow on twitter is #sexuality. Half the time it’s stuff I don’t care too much about. Every now and then you get to see a trend hit and it’s fascinating to watch the stream begin to change. That happened this morning around 9am when the world was introduced to Ms. Caitlyn Jenner.
What I wanted to mention specifically was this quote:
“Just because I have an opinion or whatever about his gender doesn’t mean I’m uncomfortable with my own sexuality.” (Usually followed by stfu, fag, douche, or other such pleasantries.)
Such an interesting idea that I would like to argue in favor of (and then argue against.)
It can be very difficult to be comfortable with your sexuality. Most of us grow up in an environment that consistently reinforces heterosexuality. For a lucky few, it is possible to discover yourself in the midst of those messages and come out with your true identity, the thing you’d been all along. For others, heterosexuality is something that they’ve simply adopted, assume themselves to be, or actually are. Heterosexuality is both the default and for the moment, the perceived norm.
As the messages about sexuality change, that can really heat up the pot. People who have been simmering in ignorance (of sexuality) or fear (of their own sexuality) can become agitated by all of these things they don’t understand and all of these things they fear.
It is much more likely that someone who doesn’t like themselves is going to respond with a “why couldn’t they just be male?” remark. It could very likely be self-reflective. “Why can’t I just be male?” Ignoring or straight out rejecting new trans, gay, bi, or otherwise non-mainstream figures can be a way to prevent oneself from accepting the same stories for themselves.
I also believe that people who have the most anger or sadness have the most to figure out. People who have to spend a lot of time talking about other peoples very personal business are generally putting off dealing with a lot of their own personal business.
I feel as though a statement like “you must be uncomfortable with your own sexuality” is inflammatory. It adds nothing productive to the conversation. It is just as wrong to make assumptions or judgements about that person – even if they are acting a fool.
If you feel a desire to lash out on people who are different than you or make judgements about the way they choose to live their lives, it may be a good time to question your own life, and the happiness you are or aren’t experiencing. Be honest with yourself and who you are and equally you will learn to value and appreciate others that do the same.