Feminist Fridays #5

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This week in school, I found out some things about my peers’ POVs on LGBTQ+. And they were slightly surprising. I mean, lots of people use “gay” as an adjective to describe anything weird or strange or gross or scary or anything of the like. So I already knew that a) they don’t really understand how to properly sue the word “gay” and b) they [probably] don’t really like gay people.

One thing I learned is that some people—even some who are my good friends—are very homophobic. They think that you get to choose to be gay or lesbian or whatever. And they think it’s gross and unnatural. One of the reasons that I think people think this is that they’re uninformed. Maybe friends who have never known someone who was gay told them these things, and they decided it was right. Maybe their parents are uninformed or just very anti-gay. Whatever the reason, many people are homophobic, and it broke my heart to learn this.

It was during design class. I was telling my friend about my new novel because she’d read the first twenty-five pages and wanted to know if I’d written more. The boy next to me overheard and asked me what it was about. I described the main characters to him and the extremely basic root of the plot. Afterward, he kind of grimaced and said something along the lines of, “That’s weird. Having a gay character.” I proceeded to inform him that Jack was bisexual, not gay, which he still thought was weird. I asked him why he thought so and he said it was “gross” for two people of the same gender to be kissing. He said he didn’t like gay people and all that stuff.

I lectured him for a moment, and he kind-of-not-really listened. Then my friend who is a 120% ally came over and joined in. We had to go to our next class, and as we waited outside, I heard a few of my friends near me discussing how of course people choose to be gay.

UMMM. What the heck???

The second thing that happened went a little something like this. We were playing basketball in PE and I was “subbed out.” [Which means that we have too many players so one has to stay on the sidelines and switch out.] One girl whom I know and talk to was also subbed out, so we talked while they played. After a little bit of chatting, she told me about something really funny that has happened today.

Apparently, this one boy was walking around with his hands crossed over his chest [I don’t even know why] and someone had said that he was transgender and was covering up his breasts. And then someone joked that he was on his period. I know I should have said something, but I was kind of speechless at the sheer horridness of this, and I just kind of nodded and smiled a little and turned away to watch the basketball game. The girl was still chuckling to herself.

I’m not transgender. I’m not claiming to know exactly how trans people feel. However, not only am I an ally, I am writing a book in the POV of a transgender person, and this hit me kind of hard. People are now joking that others are transgender, and scorning them for it?

thoughts about this? tell me in the comments below.

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Feminist Fridays #1|MHM Signup

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This is a new feature about feminism called Feminist Fridays. Since I deleted my second blog, A Girl’s Voice, which was about feminism, I decided to have feminism on this blog by introducing a new feature. FF will have topics ranging from what feminism is to my thoughts on LGBTQ+ things and beyond. It is not a linkup, but feel free to leave your own opinion on whatever I am discussing in the comment section below.

I’m going back to school next week. I have gotten so used to being on break! And when I go to school, I know that I am going to hear the word “gay” being used improperly. The most common form being, “That’s so gay.” I always cringe whenever I hear people say this, and most of the time I’ll say something. Unfortunately, this doens’t always help. The people saying this don’t necessarily know it’s wrong.

And I have a theory about their thoughts, and a solution to this.

When I was younger, I was taught that being gay or lesbian or queer or whatever you identify as is fine. It is normal, everyone is unique, and it is not something to shame someone for or be afraid of. We are all people. And one of the reasons I think I learned this and it has now become a part of me, is because when I was a kid, I met gay people. My parents have three gay friends who they have known for a long time and who are very dear to them. I grew up around them.

Some people didn’t have anyone who was gay in their life. Maybe they still don’t. I think it’s very important for others to learn that gay people are just people. But if someone does not know a gay person, they’re going to be even more easily sucked into the offensive culture people have created toward gay people.

That’s where parents need to step in. Even if a kid, or their parents, don’t know anyone who’s gay, they can tell their children that its fine to be gay. I think parenst need to do this more often, because if they don’t say anything, their kid is going to not learn, and be affected by their peers and the media.

Saying nothing is just as bad as saying something against gay people. It’s like being a bystander in a bullying situation. If you don’t stop the bullying, you are just as bad as the bully.

School is full of peer pressure, and there’s that pressure to fit in, of course. And fitting can be saying gay jokes or other hurtful comments and actions.

So far this post has been targeted toward new parents, which is not exactly the group of people who reads my blog. XD But now…

Standing up to people who make fun of gay people can be very difficult. I know I’d liek to say that I always stand up to someone who says “That’s so gay,” but that’s not true. Sometimes, I’ll hear it and “ignore” it. Why? Well, personally, I don’t want the people saying it to think I’m weird. I already have people who don’t like me for grammar reasons. And they think I only do bookish things. So I want to fit in, and to do this, sometimes I’ll ignore something I hear.

Don’t do that. Don’t do what I do. You should always stand up to people, no matter how difficult it may be. I think that it’s better to be a little ridiculed than let someone continue to stereotype gay people and make fun of them. I would have a guilty conscience.

What do you say when you stand up to someone making fun of gay people? I know I usually say something like, “That’s not very kind to gay people” or something along the lines of that. But I don’t think that’s very effective. If you’re funny, it will stick in people’s minds more. I saw this in an article on feminist.com: If someone calls a broken pencil sharpener gay when they’re frustrated, you can say, “I didn’t now the pencil sharpener had sexual orientation.” Sure, it isn’t hilarious, but it’s witty, and might stick in their minds longer than just reprimanding them.

Here are some other ideas:

  1. I know someone who’s gay, and they don’t like that *insert noun here*. [Example: That lunch box is sooo gay.]
  2. Instead of saying “gay,” why don’t you say “stupid” or “annoying”? [Example: This assembly is so gay.]
  3. I have a friend who’s gay, and I don’t think they’d appreciate being compared to a *insert noun here*. Are you like a *insert noun here*.
  4. Do you know anyone who’s gay? *says yes* Well, do you think they’d like that?

I’ve actually said the last one before, and it kind of backfired. This boy said something negative about gay people, so I asked him if he knew anyoen who was gay, and he did. I then asked him if this gay person was mean, or whatever he had said, and that person happened to be. This made him think that all gay people were like that. I wish I had said, “I know someone who is straight and they’re mean. Does that make all straight people mean?” but, sadly, I missed that opportunity.

It’s very important not to stereotype and make fun of people. We are all human.


My Hero Monday January 2015 Signup

This month the theme is a hero you might have heard about or know a little about. It’s a hero you don’t know much about, because NEW YEAR. Get it? Get it?

You can see the MHM page here to learn more.

Anyway, put your name, blog URL, and any Mondays that don’t work in the comments below. I will post the schedule with my MHM on the first Monday, so nobody gets that one.

I hope you enjoyed my first FF and you learned something new. :) Do you stand up against people? Tell me in the comments below.

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