I get irritated pretty easily. I have a bit of a temper. You touch me, I snap. Unless, I’m reaching out for a hug. Then hug me back.
I’ll sing One Direction when I want to and if you tell me to shut the hell up…well, there are several ways I could possibly react to that. Unfortunately, it does not include shutting the hell up. There’s the possibility of me getting louder and even more off-key. But yeah, no chance of actually shutting the hell up.
Some days my favourite word is the the big ‘F’. Followed very closely by the vulgar iTaukei ‘M’, and then rounded off with the ever-so polite “Bugger off!”.
Today was one of those days.
Like every good student, I like to read a semester’s worth of notes and exercises at least 12 hours before I sit a paper. I flip through, I think I got it, I look at drawings, I colour it. I sign my name all over my books, get up for a 3-hour break, sit down, watch a movie. And an hour before I need to leave the house, I start cramming. This morning while studying for an ethics exam, I came across a script for a skit we did in class 3 weeks ago.
The skit was about the struggles of a young man who was finally coming out to his parents.
Upon reflection, I realised just how difficult we make it for LGBTs to be themselves without having to “come out”. The general no no’s about PDA’s are slowly being relaxed. You will see young heterosexual couples holding hands, giving each other a quick peck on the lips. But you will not see young homosexual couples do so. Because we have made them feel unwelcome.
The blog posts are beginning to sound repetitive. Well, some things need to be said over and over – rehearsal makes for better retention.
At the very least, if we’re not doing it based on race or religion, we’re hating on people based on sexual orientation and gender identity/expression. We try not to show it, but it does. That split second facial that you make when you see them – you think they didn’t see, but they did. I like to believe they’re choosing to rise above your ignorance and while I’m applauding their bravado, truth is I don’t really know what they’re feeling.
I don’t know if the guy we just called gay is having trouble “coming out” and calling him such drives him to believe he’ll be the butt of all our jokes. I don’t know if the girl sitting next to me on the bus is only wearing a pretty dress because she thinks dressing up like a tomboy is going to label her a lesbian.
We’re sitting on the edge of tolerance, just an inch short of falling into the dark abyss of bigotry. It’s about fucking time we drop the whole “can-be-seen-but-never-heard”. Suppose it’s time to stop focusing on the “them vs. us”. Perhaps it’s time to stop putting people under our microscope. Maybe it’s time to stop being afraid of the differences we perceive in others. Because we’re not just being “honest”, we’re being cruel here.
We will never let them forget their supposed inadequacies as a human being. We will never let them forget their place in our society. That in our hearts, they’re a disappointment.
And that’s sad.
Because I want to trust in love.
I want to trust in the beautiful principle of acceptance.
I want them to rest and think that at least someone’s got their backs. And I want them to be safe and happy.
*This post was originally written 5 months ago, went through several edits and (finally) finished today.*