I feel compelled to share my thoughts on something that others seem to feel so strongly about. They must, because it’s all I’ve seen posted on social media the last few days.
I get it. It’s confusing, maybe even a little or a lot uncomfortable for some. Maybe it makes you uneasy. Maybe you don’t understand. Maybe you don’t like change. Maybe the way people live their everyday lives bothers you. Maybe you wish you could change them.
Maybe you’re scared of something you haven’t considered to ever be a norm in society…something that’s different from you or anything you’ve ever known. Maybe your religion tells you it’s wrong. Maybe your mind is clouded with assumptions, so it can’t escape the judgments that go along with that. Maybe you’re freaking out because you realize that the world gets less “cookie cutter” every day.
Maybe you aren’t sure how to handle situations you weren’t prepared for. Maybe, just maybe, you’re worried about how the world is transitioning unlike ever before and what that means for you and what you stand for. I get that it can be hard for some to open their heart and mind to something that is new to them. I get how it’s difficult to understand something that you have never had to deal with or worry about, because it has never directly affected you.
I don’t get however, why some people still believe they get to be in control of other people’s lives and how they live them.
That being said, I’m surprised by the amount of ignorance, negativity, and anger that has appeared online recently. Everyone is entitled an opinion, so let me share mine. Let me start by saying that it seems to me that when we take one step forward in this country, we end up taking two steps back. We can’t seem to get along and God forbid, we agree on anything, ever. I don’t know why we assume that fighting or blasting opinions on Facebook will solve all of the world’s problems. If it hasn’t already, I don’t think it ever will.
Target is the most recent company to react to the current debate about the transgender community and gender neutral bathrooms. It has sparked a ton of controversy, some of which needs to be talked about. I hear complaints, as well as hateful and/or uneducated opinions all over the internet about how the transgender community should or shouldn’t be treated, how their lives should be discounted, how their well-being is unimportant in comparison to the rest of the country whom considers themselves to be “normal”.
I keep hearing talk about how allowing a person who identifies with a different gender than the one they were born as, isn’t okay. I keep hearing that they were born that way, so that’s who they are, that’s the bathroom they should identify with as well. Why is there so much conversation about who goes to the bathroom where?
Do people not know what transgender means? It’s refers to people whose gender identity differs from the sex the doctor marked on their birth certificate. Gender identity is a person’s internal, personal sense of being a man or a woman. Whether you believe it or not, people don’t just wake up one morning and decide it would be fun to be the opposite gender…that it would be cool to have boobs or a dick. It’s a lot more complicated than that. These human beings often live in pain and in fear of who they are and whom they wish to be. They are faced with the struggle of figuring out who they are and how they can be their true selves both inside and out.
Transgender men and women seek to become on the outside what they already are on the inside, whether that be male or female. It’s likely that we have all been in a bathroom with a trans person many times before, without even knowing it, and now people want to argue about it. In my 22 years, I have yet to see another person’s genitals while in a public restroom, and it’s unlikely that’ll change by allowing the transgender community to go to the restroom they most closely identify with.
I haven’t hear one good reason as to why a trans person shouldn’t be allowed to go into the public bathroom stall they feel most comfortable in, do their business, and continue on with their day. They seem to mind their own business, so why can’t everyone else? Public restrooms aren’t a place that we go to hangout in, to have long, drawn out conversations with strangers who are in the stall next to us. We walk in, pick a stall, wash our hands, and walk back out the door. It seems to me that it would be more uncomfortable for everyone, if a male who identifies as a female (who has female features and dresses like a woman) walked into a men’s restroom, or vice versa.
For those who say they are worried about pedophiles, their children’s safety, and people abusing gender neutral restrooms because of a business’s decision to spread equality, please stop. If a pervert chooses to go into a bathroom with bad intentions, they were going to do it before this ruling, and they’ll do it after. This isn’t opening doors for them or giving them a right to do anything. The world can be a sick place, and it has sick people, but please don’t make the mistake of interpreting true trans people to be the problem. They aren’t, and they never will be. They don’t need your acceptance or your approval to be themselves, just like you don’t need theirs. Transgender people aren’t infringing upon your privacy, and if you feel threatened, don’t use public restrooms.
Discrimination, hate, and anger towards people who live their lives differently than us, needs to stop. It is not the end of the world if we let the LGBT community live the lives they wish to. You live yours. I’ll live mine. They’ll live theirs. We only have control over how we live our own lives, no one else’s. We’re not all the same. We never will be. We have different opinions. We have different beliefs. We live different lives. But we should all do one thing the same, and that is respect.
We have bigger things to worry about than which stall people who identify as transgender go to when they need to use a bathroom in public. Target announced that its transgender employees and customers are “welcome” to use the bathroom or fitting room facility that best aligns with their gender identity and I think it’s great.
I didn’t know it was possible to love Target any more than I already did. I guess I was wrong.
That’s all. Thank you.