I’m Just Sayin’

This is where we have arrived, culturally.  No grounding.  No baseline.  No fixed point from which to make judgments.  Everything is a free-for-all.  And the funny thing, is that everything is not equally a free-for-all.

Culturally we’re going to do back-flips of joy for Bruce Jenner/Caitlyn Jenner.  We aren’t going to explore background issues.  We aren’t going to examine family life.  We aren’t going to investigate medications or any other things that Jenner may have used over the years.  We’re just going to assume that it is perfectly normal, natural, and even laudable for a man who was once the poster-child of masculinity to declare himself a woman.  End of story, and don’t anybody dare to challenge either his decision or the media treatment of it.

So a man who simply declares himself a woman (no surgery as yet, at least according to best information) and goes and does a glamour shot for a magazine cover, he should legitimately be viewed and treated fully as a woman no-questions-asked.  If he were next week to declare that he considers himself a guy, should that be whooped up and made a national obsession as well?  If three months from now he decided that he’s a woman again, would that be another cause for celebration?  If people are simply making random declarations about themselves, why is this a) newsworthy and b) laudable?  At best, it just is.

If determining that you’re more comfortable as a woman than a man is socially acceptable, why would it not be equally socially acceptable (and scientifically a heckuva lot more justifiable) to embrace an alternate ethnicity that you are more comfortable with?  After all, most of us are legitimately enough of a hodge-podge of backgrounds that we could make any number of different ethnic claims about ourselves that probably have at least a smidgen of actual reality to them.  Unlike gender.

Yet people seem far less cool with becoming a different ethnicity than they do about becoming a different gender, if initial reactions to Rachel Dolezal being outed as a white person basically impersonating a black person would indicate.  Dolezal’s parents outed her as white this past week, despite her efforts to pass herself off as a woman of color.  There are some who are publicly scratching their heads about this disconnect.  They are, predictably, being told to shut up and butt out of things.  They don’t have an opinion worth offering on the matter, while others will undoubtedly decry Dolezal as racist while still staunchly defending Bruce/Caitlyn.

This is what happens when you don’t have a baseline.  When you don’t have something to anchor yourself to.  This is the price you pay for emancipating yourself from an external and objective authority in favor of doing whatever you feel like.   It is just exactly the sort of goofiness one should expect when everything is relative and determined by personal feelings rather than reality.  It will be curious to see how folks sort out the inconsistency between supporting a man pretending to be a woman while still being inclined to castigate a Caucasian pretending to be an African American.  Curious, but also pointless.  However they sort it out they won’t have any authoritative rationale to back it up.  It will simply be a matter of who yells the loudest the longest.  Again.

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2 Responses to “I’m Just Sayin’”

  1. williamb Says:

    “This is the price you pay for emancipating yourself from an external and objective authority in favor of doing whatever you feel like.”

    Yes, this x1000.

    The rules are now made up as we go and it is not your business to know the rules, until you’ve broken one! I would say right now we are at the point that, gender is whatever you tell yourself you are and race is whatever other people tell you, you are.

    • mrpaulnelson Says:

      Agreed, though I suspect that the rules are not as arbitrary as we might think them to be. If we agree that there is an Enemy at work trying to undo creation, then it seems reasonable to me that the rules will ultimately be crafted towards trying to silence the Word of God. First in the realm of public ethics and morality, then in the realm of any outward expression of our faith, and finally in the elimination of freedom to believe at all – along the lines of what happened in Communist USSR and China for decades. Our hope is not that we will avoid this, but rather that regardless of systematized attempts to eliminate the Gospel, the Holy Spirit is infinitely stronger and more powerful. Faith may go underground, and cultural Christians may decide it is no longer to their advantage to profess the faith, but the power and presence of God will continue. Thanks be to God!

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