Gender rant

Posted by I'm the penguin | Posted in | Posted on Thursday, August 04, 2011

I was 12 when I came to the realization that despite all the differences/deviation/diversity we can see with sexuality/roles you can only be a man/woman. And I'm not sure why, but I felt like I was missing something, as if I was leaving a lot out. But what could it be? We are taught that if you have a penis, you are a man; a vagina, you are a woman. It doesn't matter who you like, boys, girls or both. There's just those two options right?

And don't even get me started with the gender roles that we are expected to follow, what masculinity means in a patriarchal system. The condemnation of femininity, and all the social issues that unravel from such systems. And these, of course have everything to do with our perception of genders, but to keep it simple I'll just stick to genders.

So, normalizing genders is, I think, one of the basis of society as we know it. Just see how EVERYTHING from commodities, to consumerism, to education has everything broken down for a)men b) women. That's it, restrooms, products, entertainment, everything has a target appealing to this ideas of gender roles that must be kept at all costs.

But really what makes a man a man and a woman a woman? It seems rather obvious, you'd say that beside form the secondary sexual traits in every person, there are the primary one which are rather obvious. So you may have a short, skinny, androgenic person, but if there's a penis, it's a man, and so HE must behave like one. Same goes for large, wide, bearded women.

But what happens when a person has boobs, a girl's face, yet a penis? We call such person hermaphrodite and make them choose which gender role would they rather play. Because society is very inclusive like that right? They have a choice. (as long as it is male or female).

Well, what about if said person (Sam) doesn't want to be a girl, or a boy. What if Sam is appealed by traits of both gender roles and decides to stay in between? How do we call Sam? he?she? xe?

Now, you may think that this only applies to people born with some gender-related variation. But be honest and ask yourself if it is true we can make such a dichotomy, girl/boy. If a girl likes to wrestle she's a tomboy, and is frowned upon; if a boy likes ballet he's girly, and he's bashed. And we're used to this kind of perceptions, and nowadays we're very "tolerant" of this types of behaviors, we're like "yeah, whatever works"

But I think that's not enough. Because we are only letting it slip by, as if in a magnanimous act of kindness we're allowing this types of gender-confusing behaviors, this people who wander in a grey area when it comes to gender.
I think we need to realize that this idea of genders does no favors to anyone. Sure, it's how we've been raised, sure that's all we know. But I think that as long as there is a norm to get compared with in terms of how a person is supposed to live their sexuality, their friendships, their relationships; there is not going to be a truly free society in which we can actually explore the human expression beyond norms.

Normalize diversity, don't just "tolerate" it.

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