We all have opinions — Why Don’t You Want Yours Attacked or Questioned?
Everybody deserves fair treatment and that includes questioning your opinion.
My own opinion is enough for me, and I claim the right to have it defended against any consensus, any majority, anywhere, any place, any time. And anyone who disagrees with this can pick a number, get in line.
Everyone has an opinion about everything. Not every opinion seems logical.
Opinions stem from varied triggers including facts, feelings, experiences, influences, you name it. All opinions can be questioned.
The world has built a system of “we agree to disagree” and so far this has helped keep it sane. With everyone having a piece of the “opinion” cake and an opportunity to defend it when the need arises, fairness seems to be in place.
Like opinions on racism, feminism, politics, people also have opinions on sexuality. The most prominent is that which involves the gay and transgender communities.
Everyone has an opinion about everything
My observation however is that any view that doesn’t fit into the “support” factor of this community is seen as an infringement on their rights. Opinions and actions which don’t seem to line up with their preferences are termed “hate”.
It is no doubt that they experience hate and other discriminatory behaviours. Still, some things done in a bid to “treat them equally” are viewed as hate.
Should we say they are given “special treatment”?
Christopher Hitchens acknowledged that whatever his views were, people are bound to question them. Can we say this holds true with gay people? Can one honestly question them from a constructive point of view without being seen as a “hater?”.
This quote by Thomas Sowell depicts clearly the situation we find ourselves in today;
When people get used to preferential treatment, equal treatment seems like discrimination— Thomas Sowell
I remember watching one of Dave Chappelle’s shows wherein he expressed his concerns about preferential treatment of gay people.
He explained to the amusement of his audience his ordeal. In a nutshell, he was told he couldn’t use the word “faggot” on stage because he wasn’t gay. He then went ahead to ask if he could use the word nigga, and those in charge said he could.
Astonished by the bias, he replied, “but I’m not a nigga” why then can I say the word “nigga” but can’t say the word “fagot”?
I still wonder what the response to his question was; but if I could take a wild guess, I would say “silence” or maybe a reply which holds no bearing.
When people get used to preferential treatment, equal treatment seems like discrimination — Thomas Sowell
A few months ago I stumbled on one of the episodes of Bk chat show. Guess what the topic was — Yes, gay and trans people.
It was exciting!
Getting others’ points of view is a hobby of mine and I couldn’t wait to hear what everyone had to say. Fortunately, or should I say, unfortunately, two of the panel members were gay. Everyone seemed overly cautious to ask the hard questions for fear of “hurting their feelings”.
The atmosphere seemed tense. Everyone tried not to “step on toes”.
It looked and felt artificial because it was clear people weren't speaking their minds. Finally, someone rose to the occasion and asked a hard question.
Instantly he became the bad guy of the show and other panel members picked on him for being “too direct”. Those of us who follow the show know the guy was just being himself, saying what he had in mind and asking questions directly as always.
But for the single reason that the person he was talking to was gay, everyone felt he needed to be a little softer — I wonder why.
This isn’t the first time people have been expected to twist their personalities or change their views and mannerisms to accommodate gay or trans people.
Countless comedians have been called out for making jokes on gay communities and trans people. The most amusing thing in all this is that no one seems to have a problem with these same comedians making jokes about straight people’s sexuality.
Most of the shows involving gay people look like panel members are walking on eggshells. They find it hard to say what they really mean or ask the necessary question for fear of reproach both on the show and online.
Everybody deserves fair treatment, equal treatment in the eyes of the law and the state. And that includes gays, lesbians, transgender persons. I am not a fan of discrimination and bullying of anybody on the basis of race, on the basis of religion, on the basis of sexual orientation or gender. This is actually part and parcel of the agenda that’s also going to be front and centre, and that is how are we treating women and girls.
I agree with Barack Obama; however, a note should be taken of the fact that equal treatment is a whole package. It comes with a fun and ugly side. It's like sweetish bitters; tasting sweet but bitter at one point.
Picking which side of the “equality” is acceptable and which isn’t based on preference dismisses the whole point of equality.
Let’s view “questioning” and “comedy” skits on this community as a way of making them “equal” with others. Which is what they seek.
People didn’t even talk about the gay community because it wasn’t a norm. If society has chosen to incorporate them like everyone else, there is a price to pay.
Questions will be asked, opinions voiced and comedians will make jokes about them as they do every other person.
If we can ask people why they have religious, political, health and other choices, we should be able to ask people why they made a sexual choice openly without having to look over our shoulders.
These discussions should be allowed to happen, especially when the person in question means no harm.
Most importantly, people should be free to disagree and have their opinions challenged in a respectable way.
This to me is what a fair and equal world is all about.
“We don’t need to be good. But let’s try to be fair.”
― Holly Black
Thanks for reading.
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