It wasn’t too long ago that the Boy Scouts of America found themselves embroiled in the sexual orientation political maelstrom due to its policy banning members or leader who were gay. Over the course of about a year the council revised its stance and followed the course of the rest of the country in non-discrimination rights and practices. That is: the organization would not (and can’t) use sexual orientation to deny membership. And we all thought that was settled until this week. USA Today broke two stories: one a positive piece on National Geographic’s cover of a trans girl (and in-depth article on gender revolution) then secondly, their story yesterday on a trans boy’s removal from his Cub Scout pack.
As I read in a Facebook article yesterday, a young, transgender boy was removed from his Cub Scout pack because he was in fact born biologically female.
I took that first article with a grain of salt, not that I didn’t believe it, but more from the “it was on Facebook” perspective. Because, as we all know my lovelies, not everything on the Internet, much less Facebook, is true.
But today the story appeared on several new sites that are rather more reliable. I’m including a link to the story from USA Today as reported through MSN. However, tonight’s post isn’t as much about the story as it is the response.
I’ll have to admit that in some aspects I wasn’t surprise at the negative reaction. Many commenting on the article calling the parent’s abusive, saying that CPS should be brought in and remove the child, etc (back to this later). What was more surprising to me was the lack of religious fervor in the comments. I more than expected to see reactions like “God didn’t create these psychos”, quotes from Leviticus condemning gay people, and more. That aside, I’ll return to the common thread among the respondents.
I’ll be the first to admit that there is a lot of misleading information regarding gender identity, transgender, intersex people. And it can be confusing to filter fact from fiction. I myself can attest to that as I’m still trying to figure out where and what I am, and where I fall on the gender spectrum. But in the end, does it really matter? Why do we as a society feel that we have the right, or need, to judge people, and their actions or beliefs particularly when they are different?
Why can’t we as a society let people be free to live the lives they are comfortable with regardless of how they identify or express themselves? Why do we have to mock, tear down, and vilify those that aren’t the same as us?
If a person, as a parent, doesn’t understand transgender, or intersex issues, that’s one thing. But when their child is confused, seems to be acting out, or struggling with their identity, what is more supportive and helpful? Trying to understand and figure it out with their child, and being supportive of the child in their exploration? Or making them adopt the parent’s view-point, restricting their exploration and discovery?
In my opinion, it’s the former and the latter can only bring about more trauma, confusion, and, as can be seen in numerous articles, physical harm. Suicide rates among transgender people is high enough without the additional stigma and lack of support from family.
So help me, gentle readers. Become an ally, Show support for trans friends and family. Stand up with me and say to others that we’re all humans who just want to live happy lives.