Whenever I feel tempted to comment about stuff, I try to remind myself that for some people these issues are deadly real

Red_Sunset_by_Mariposita1I am a serious person. I am well educated. I am articulate. I have many thoughts and opinions about things. Today, for instance, I had a very good conversation with a friend of mine (Danielle) wherein I made what I thought were some very salient and interesting points on the comparison between transracial and transgender identities (the conversation spurred by Rachel Dolezal’s story being juxtaposed with Caitlyn Jenner). I think there is nothing wrong with discussing these things or having opinions about them, and I encourage people to do so.

In fact, the having of opinions was so enjoyable that I even considered writing up those thoughts in the form of a pithy Facebook status or blog post. It is even possible (though unlikely) that this blog post would’ve been a valuable contribution to the internet’s discussions on this topic. But when it came to the point of actually putting fingers to keys, I felt exhausted by the whole prospect. Because the truth of the matter is that whenever you write about identity questions, you’re writing about stuff that is serious business for a lot of people. They often are beaten and harassed because of these questions. They suffer financial and career loss. They suffer discrimination and shunning by both friends and family. And I wouldn’t want to write any comment that wasn’t respectful of that reality. Not because I’m afraid of people leaping on me and saying that I am very very wrong (although partially because of that), but also because it wouldn’t feel right. I’d rather just find some other person’s comment and link to it, so that’s what I’ll do.

This is another reason that I didn’t like living in DC. There was too much gossip and too much shop-talk about issues that were deadly important. Living in the Bay Area is much better, since all the talk is about the tech sector, and, say whatever else you want about it, but the tech sector strikes me as something that’s just important enough to blather on about. It’s important, don’t me wrong. But it’s not deadly important.