Wednesday, January 16, 2013

First Thoughts

While I fully expect my readers to tend towards zero on my first post, I guess I've got to introduce myself sometime. My name is Alexander. I am many things, and I expect this blog to reflect that, but perhaps the most important thing to know is that I am transgender. This, after all, will send the transphobes running. I'm also aware that many people won't know much about this, and I have nothing against you. I'll write my next post on it for more information.

I am also an atheist, a socialist, asexual, a writer, and an amateur philosopher. What prompted me to begin this blog was an experience I had recently:

Things don't happen for a reason.

I was recently having dinner with a liberal gay christian who, among other things, advocates trans rights and awareness in the church. I could say more about him, but I won't, with respect to his privacy. Anyway, I agree with most of his views, and I have the utmost respect for what he's doing in regards to transpeople. However, the conversation eventually moved to an opinion that I've heard before, namely that everything happens for a reason.

I have trouble with this. I'm not religious by nature, but lets say a deity did exist, what reason would it have for making me transgender, or anything else for that matter? The common answer to this is that through suffering breeds compassion and other admiral qualities. Well yes, congratulations, I am a compassionate person. Compassion is basically the only thing I'm good at. But you didn't have to make me trans to do it.

This supposed divine being could have done many things to achieve the necessary adversity to make me a good person. Could have made me gay, for instance. Gay people today still have to deal with homophobia and bigotry, they have to fight for the right to marry, they have to deal with coming out to their families, risk rejection, and all for the right to be who they are. Its no wonder that people who go through things like that are likely to think twice before hurting others. But there lies my point. The struggle of gay and bisexual people is to be accepted for who they are, and the struggle of transpeople is less about being socially accepted, and more about dealing with a lifetime of self loathing, and gender dysphoria.

I don't mean to sound bitter about my situation. I'm not, really. I have accepted who I am, and where my life will lead. But being transgender does not have a divine purpose. In fact, nothing that happens to us has any purpose other than a coincidence of biology and physics. Earthquakes don't happen to teach people a lesson, they happen because of a build up of pressure along fault lines. And tragedy and pain don't happen to make you a better person, they just happen. So become a better person anyway, and move on from it.

A couple of my readers may have been here before. Its true, this isn't technically my first post, but I only had about five before, and they were really quite old, so I thought I'd start out again.