Whoa, wait, don’t light up your torches yet, let’s have a grown up conversation before you guys burn my house to the ground in the name of social justice.
Gender is a complicated thing. It is, but it shouldn’t be. If you assume gender is simply the difference between two different kinds of human reproductive systems, life becomes a lot easier. If you spend a minute thinking about it, anything else we attribute to the term “gender” is, sadly, social prejudices and stereotypes. Dresses are feminine. Pink is feminine. Short hair is masculine. Skirts are feminine. Military boots are masculine. Stereotypes are stupid.
I’ve been reading about concepts like gender fluidity and transgenderism, and the sentence “gender is not about your genitalia” pops up a lot. But gender really is about genitalia. It is about XX and XY. About it and nothing more.
Why is having a penis or a vagina such a big deal for some people? How come something so insignificant can be a barrier when it comes to becoming who you really are? Why do we call it evolution if intelligence has made us so dumb?
Some months ago, Caitlyn Jenner appeared in the cover of Vanity Fair after her surgery and the cyber world was so happy for her. I was happy for her. Countless times that cover has been posted accompanied with quotes like “she’s so beautiful” and comments alike, but my question is, why nobody talked about how beautiful she was before the surgery? Or, why did she had to undergo surgery in order to become beautiful or in order for people to notice her beauty. I’ve always thought that beauty is about acceptance. Acceptance of oneself. At least that’s how it starts. By accepting your own body the way it is and accepting that there’s nothing wrong about any part of it. By accepting that what society considers flaws, in fact, really aren’t.
Sadly, way too many people think that surgery or change is needed to become who you are. The way I see it, Caitlyn’s Jenner surgery has nothing to do with gender. It has everything to do with pre-conceived ideals of beauty.
I’d say there’s no difference between the surgery that Caitlyn underwent, and the surgery her daughter Kylie underwent.
“In order to get to this point, Jenner has had to undergo many surgeries, such as shaving down her adam’s apple, facial feminizing, a nose job, breast implants and more. As far as the public knows, Jenner has not removed her penis yet, but other surgeries have been confirmed. In fact, one of Caitlyn’s doctors, Dr. Harrison Lee, told E! that Caitlyn’s surgeries with him totaled an estimated $70,000. When Caitlyn had undergone the 10-hour facial feminization surgery, the procedure involved changes to the hairline, forehead, jaw, and chin.”
Nose job, breast implants, changes in the hairline… how many of these things have to do with gender? Absolutely none. And how many of these have to do with whim? Absolutely all of them. She can’t carry a baby in her womb, she can’t breastfeed a child, what’s the point of having surgery in order to “change” your gender if absolutely nothing changes? Is this the message we are sending to kids? That they need surgery in order to wear what they want and not be called freaks? That they have to call themselves something they are not in order to justify what they do and who they like or how they dress?
This reminds me of a quote from a french movie called La Source des Femmes. At one point, a woman replies to a man: “And if Man desires woman, it’s the will of allah. But this doesn’t make us either slaves nor objects to cover just to stifle men’s lust. You close your eyes! Be strong… control your satanic desires yourself. Cover your eyes, not our faces!”
Are we so selfish as a society, that in order to be comfortable looking at a man wearing a dress, we need them to change their looks? Are we so naive to think that a man wearing a dress is a freak but if that man undergoes surgery so his looks are closer to the beauty standards, then it’s okay for him to wear that dress?
Why is she in the cover of Vanity Fair and not Jeffree Star or Fat Mike? Because Vanity Fair wants to make money. That’s why Caitlyn is on the cover. Do you think they care about beauty or acceptance? Do you think they decided to have Caitlyn on the cover because they sympathized with her struggle? Probably not, but I’m sure they sold a bunch of copies of that issue. I’m sure as they were doing the photoshot they could already hear the money falling from the sky and into their pockets. If you want to talk about acceptance and beauty, let’s have a look at the two examples I mentioned before.
Notorious punk rocker and NoFx frontman Fat Mike (left) wears dresses and carries pink purses and nobody makes a big deal out of it. Model, make-up artist, and singer Jeffree Star (right) wears pink, make-up, skirts and high-heels and either nobody makes a big deal out of it.
Why? because there’s nothing to be upset about it.
In that sense, these two are, in my opinion, stronger role models when it comes to beauty and acceptance, than any Kardashian will ever be. No surgery was needed to become who they really are. Their genitalia wasn’t a barrier when it came to decide what they would wear. I don’t see their gender stopping them from being awesome. They will probably never be in the cover of Vanity Fair either. They wouldn’t sell.
We are all becoming so dumb. I can see a future where we all are clones of some beauty stereotypes that these fashion and beauty bibles dictate. We are so dumb. We look at these prejudices and pretend they are immutable. Like some natural law. Like a physics law. Like that woman who decided she won’t marry homosexuals in court because she read that homosexuality is a sin in some old fairy tale book.
Caitlyn Jenner had to change her appearance, her body, the way she dressed, her name (HER NAME! something as meaningless and irrelevant as a damn name), the pronoun people use to address her, her nose, her jaw line. And for what? For nothing. To justify the make-up, to justify what she wears or how she moves. Because a man wearing a dress is not considered beautiful by most individuals.
But hey, don’t get this wrong, I’m not blaming her at all. She’s a martyr for the cause. I’m blaming you. I’m blaming myself. I’m blaming human stupidity. I’m blaming everyone who thinks and tells you that your gender is stopping you from wearing something, doing something, or liking someone. I’m blaming everyone that needs people to change in order to feel comfortable looking at them.