I never liked reading comments on news website posts. Even if the news post had nothing to do with my situation or anyone I knew. However, in the last several years the media has made transgender issues a normal part of the news cycle. This is good, and this is bad. It’s great that real information, about us and who we are and what we are not, gets out there. That they are able to help explain one simple concept, “Treat us like people, because we are indeed people“. But I don’t like reading the comments that inevitably happen. I am always expecting the positive comments, because why would I expect someone would have trouble with another person wanting to be treated like everyone else? Of course, the comments are instead full of completely unwarranted hate and ignorance. I see “Christians“ who claim that their lord and savior hates homosexuals (they seem to think that Transgender are automatically gay), when in fact Jesus never ever, not once said anything about being gay or transgender. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t think all Christians believe this, I don’t think they all live in hate. Christians can be kind and loving like any person can. These are people wearing Christianity like a cloak, as if it is a right to condem others, to burn them at the stake.It’s not just Christians, they are not alone in fostering hate and intolerance. Alt-right, rabid consrevatives or newly-minted Trump Republicans or just hate-filled people focus on us because we are largely easy targets for thier hate.
These people, slander and malign us, they call us names and expound such seething hatred in thier speech I am often taken aback. No, no that isn’t strong enough, I am legitimately frightened. I am frightened more because these are everyday people. I and others must walk among these people to go about our everyday lives. We must work beside these people, pray next to them, eat and go to the movies around these people. It’s a mine field, invisible until it’s too late, constant and unforgiving once they embrace what they are going to do in the emotion of hate. They don’t care about our words or if we are nice or giving or loved by others.
I did several tours in the middle east and I felt the same way there in actual combat. Those tours had a start and stop time, there was a time when it was at least over for me, I went home. But now, I live with a real fear all the time, that someone will just decide to act on the hate they have been holding. I don’t pass, I don’t think at least. But being in stealth doesn’t mean you aren’t known about. I shouldn’t have to pass, I should just be able to be me with no one caring since I don’t harm them in any fashion. But the world we live in, the political climate in the US, it’s a free-for-all in which any bigot feels they can ignore the laws that cover everyone but since it didn’t specifically state “Transgender“ then they are justified. Of course they count on bullying, on intimidation and our own fear to keep us quiet, to keep us the silent minority. What they don’t seem to understand is that fear is a motivator to make change happen.
Commentary on news sites is mostly anonymous or at least so easy to circumvent that identity doesn’t mean much. This is good since most of us have secret or alternate social network accounts, but it allows for the bad as well, cowards who spout nonesense about the LGBT agenda like it is a conspiracy on the level of the Illuminati. Wanting to be treated like a human being is not an agenda, it’s a basic human right. The only agenda, is to work towards being treated correctly, instead of treated like we need to be fixed, corrected, or made socially invisible again.
It is easy to say that we can ignore the commentary, that we don’t have to read it. But the articles are about our situation or who we are, so very hard to ignore what is written directly below the article, and really we want to know that we are supported. Those types of comments, the supportive ones, are few and far between.