Well it seems that lately you can’t say right for saying wrong on the internet these days, even if your intentions are completely non-offensive or merely trying to learn more about a group of people or a sexuality/gender subject. A strong consistent theme of sex positivity flows throughout the conversations, blogs and discussions amongst those with an interest in these areas.
Let’s just think about that for a moment. Sex. Positivity. Being positive about something. Actually, being non-judgemental. Not casting judgement, but instead welcoming a spirit of unity, harmony and acceptance.
Do you have a spirit of acceptance when it comes to how others perceive and talk about your sexuality choices and gender orientation? Or do you have pre-conceived ideas that you bring to the table of every discussion about such?
The social traditional bully of any situation has ironically become seen to be a valid target of the traditional underdogs. For example, there is the case of reverse racism, as well as what seems to be a reverse sexism, genderism, etc whatever the ‘right’ label is. Don’t hit me. I haven’t been involved in any sexuality or gender ‘turf wars’, so to speak, but over the past year or more, my forays into the world of sexuality and education about a more sex positive world has led to feedback from my community peers and other bloggers that they’re often afraid to say a word out of place.
Thinking about it, why should only one person or group deem the ‘right’ labels to use? Just because there has been, during history, terrible racism against black people by white people, it doesn’t give black people a valid ‘right’ to bully white people about it or to expect it before it happens. Nor does this same trend give trans or non-gender-identifying people the right to call out cis people before anything offensive is even done. In the same way, it doesn’t give women the right to be misandrist to men just because women have endured years of misogyny.
I would like to see the guilt of an entire group of people not used any more. Not taken advantage of. It’s manipulative, it’s emotionally blackmailing, it’s controlling and it’s definitely not positive.
I am white, I am cis – if a black trans person pushed ahead of me in the queue in a shop and I called them out on it, I would hardly expect for them to turn around and say OH well I expect you feel you have the right to call me out on my behaviour, because you are just a privileged white cis person! How dare you! For I am the renowned underdog and you are now just using your privileged position to reiterate my small, picked-upon position!
Ok, slight exaggeration of how things may go – but this kind of thing happens all the time, in the realms of the internet and on social media. People feel able to lash out with pre-conceived notions of how others mean their sincere questions and interest and curiosity. Asking for information and thoughts from someone different to you isn’t automatically being offensive. Maybe they just want to learn. What exactly is wrong with that?
I thought one of the main lessons we were meant to learn as kids in the playground was to treat others as you’d want to be treated – and not to stoop to bullies levels. You have an issue with being singled out, bullied and mistreated? Then why use this anger and frustration to do exactly the same to any and everyone around you who dares utter a word about your situation/orientation/gender/issues/anything-else-I-have-accidentally-forgotten-don’t-hit-me?
It’s almost like many daren’t utter a word these days about sex, sexuality, gender or anything else – in case of a public rebuke and showdown by someone more sex positive than ourselves. Oh, the shame and humiliation. Using the wrong label. How did it come to this! Surely progress and understanding can only come with discussion, and this can’t really happen if any discussion ventured into is immediately cut off, clamped down and mocked by a small percentage who seem to revel in being the surly small minded ‘pro-outcast’ with definitely more issues than what their genitalia happen to be or want.
How about we all stop worrying so much about what everyone else is trying to label us as, and start just trying to make sure we don’t upset one another? Not automatically assuming every word that doesn’t meet with your inner approval is an affront to your very soul? Surely that’s a more positive way to move forwards? If there is so much angst and anger and societal warfare going on in the world of sexuality and gender, isn’t it better not to pick fights where they’re not warranted, just because there may be an underlying frustration about as yet unaltered larger world views?
Note: If you’ve been offended by anything I have written in this post, it’s probably because I have a different brain to you. That doesn’t mean that I am necessarily a negative, horrible or intolerant person. It just makes me different. And that’s ok, right? Because we’re all accepting of one another.
– Cara Sutra