Thursday, May 2, 2013

Gay and Transgender Issues: Show Your Work

Gays are now accepted more than ever in our culture. Gay marriage is becoming legal in more and more places and it is starting to get to the point where being a homophobe is looked down on more than being gay. Of course this is not universal, there are many places where gay people are still discriminated against, but widespread legalization of gay marriage seems all but inevitable at this point and the culture in general is moving toward seeing gay people as the same as everyone else. But for some reason, transgender people are not so lucky, they still have a long way to go.

I'm reminded of teaching math (I know, I know, when you are holding a hammer the world is nails). Giving the correct answer was never sufficient, the work you used to get there is also required to get full points on a problem. In fact, for a 10 point problem, the answer is probably only worth 2 or 3 points, how you get there is much more important than the answer you wind up with. What would you grade more harshly, someone who makes several mistakes that cancel each other out and arrive at the correct answer, or someone who makes a trivial mistake and gets the wrong answer but clearly understand the concepts involved? What would you do if the answer doesn't seem to follow from their work at all? It's possible that they did a bunch of work in their head, but more likely they copied off a neighbor. (which is especially obvious if you have a blue test and the correct answer to the green test).

Anyway, back to the topic at hand, if you are for gay rights and against transgender rights, I'd like you to show your work. Why is it that you think gay people should have all the same rights as everyone else? Because as far as I see it, it's because they are consenting adults doing things that don't affect anyone else. They should be able to do whatever they want. By the same exact logic, shouldn't the same thing apply to transgender people?

Even among people who are in favor of gays getting all of the same rights as straight people, I will occasionally see them still want to discriminate against trans-folk. They will talk about how it is gross and unnatural. They will even talk about LGBT rights, but that seems to be just because that is the catch-phrase, they seem to want to put transgender in its own category. It makes me wonder if they have thought about this stuff at all, or if they are just going with the flow. Have they considered the issues and concluded that gays deserve rights just like everyone else, or have they cheated off of someone and copied their answer? Show your work!


  1. Hausdorff, good perspective! Discrimination in any area is uncalled for, we all have the right to live our lives unaffected by what others think of morals as long as we don't break any laws.

    I found out this week that discrimination begins at an early age and needs to be stifled there. I overheard my junior high granddaughter talking about two boys from school who were gay, and they "even" have cats instead of dogs. I asked her if she thought everyone who had cats were gay, and she looked puzzled. I knew this was something she heard and assumed it to be true. After a long talk with her about not discriminating because it was a form of bullying, I think she got the message and I told her to repeat it to her friends. Hopefully she will.

    1. That sounds like a pretty good conversation. It would seem that kids are sponges for information, gotta keep an eye on what they are absorbing :)

  2. I think one of the problems that arises is that it makes people uncomfortable facing their own sexuality. When you cannot accept that sexuality is a scale from straight to gay with many places in between. For some people it is a scary thought that some people are able to fully accept their own sexuality like transgender/bi people, as it makes people feel weak. and when people feel weak they will not be accepting.

    1. The problem is, most of these anti-gay crusaders aren't only uncomfortable with their own sexuality, they're uncomfortable with the very notion of sex. They don't want to see anyone talk about it, they don't want to see anyone reference it, it's something to be done in the dark. Far too many people in America are terrified of being sexual beings at all, they see it as a necessary evil.

      It's no wonder this country is so screwed up.

    2. It's definitely true that people in this country are generally not comfortable with sex.

      Christian: "For some people it is a scary thought that some people are able to fully accept their own sexuality like transgender/bi people, as it makes people feel weak. and when people feel weak they will not be accepting."

      I'm not sure if I agree or not with this idea. People feel weak because they can't fully accept their own sexuality and they lash out at people who do? Something about that seems a bit off to me, but I can't really explain why. Something to think about.

      Cephus: "They don't want to see anyone talk about [sex]"

      That seems to be the case, but they are always bringing it up. You would think if they didn't want people to talk about it they wouldn't talk about it themselves so much. I guess maybe once other people start talking about it they feel the need to weigh in. The funny thing is the real effect is certainly to extend the conversation.

    3. It is for this reason that I believe sex education should maybe go further and show kids how to actually pleasure your partner. Maybe then people will stop been scared once they can really just enjoy it.

    4. The goal should be to make kids more comfortable with sex in general. So teach kids how to pleasure their partner and make the whole thing less mysterious? Seems like it could be a reasonable path.


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