Thursday, March 23, 2017

Q Toon: I Contain Multitudes

In spite of yesterday's terror attack in London, this week's hearings on Neil Gorsuch, and today's scheduled vote on the Astronomical Health Cost Act, today's cartoon is inspired by the cover story in the latest issue of Time magazine.
Paul Berge
Q Syndicate
Mar 23, 2017

"Beyond He or She: Infinite Identities" touched briefly on the discomfort some elder gay rights advocates may have with the idea that not everybody feels "born that way" about their gender or sexual identity. The concern is that such an attitude reopens the door to antigay relatives dismissing LGBT identity as merely a phase, or worse, validating the Clockwork Orange "conversion therapy" practiced by religious pseudopsychotherapists.

Personally, I've never bought into the idea that gender/sexual identity can only be nature, never nurture; the mind is an extremely complicated thing and one theory rarely fits all. I've known people who knew they were gay from the age of five or earlier, whereas I wouldn't have had any grasp of the concept back then. Heck, I actually had a crush on a girl in elementary school. I don't personally know anybody who figured out their own sexuality as late in life as Mark Slackmeyer or the central character in In & Out, but I suppose it must be a thing, too.

Children and teens today have more opportunity than previous generations to find their way to their true gender/sexual identity, and good for them. I can't say I understand the distinctions between all 54 genders on Facebook, and I don't know whether "neutrois" rhymes with "bois" in English or French. But adolescence is a tumultuous roller coaster ride of hormonal twists and turns for even the most cisgender kids, so I'm happy to cut them a little slack.

It's not as if there is only one lesbigay lifestyle, either; there must be at least 54 subgenres of sexual proclivity. For that matter, not every person who has sex with persons of the same sex identifies with the words "gay" or "lesbian." In minority and immigrant communities, some see those as White Culture boxes into which they do not fit, so they come up with other words. Or none at all.

I'm glad that being gay is not a choice. There are just too many options to choose from.

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