Gender My Arse: Part III

Largely disgusted by approximately 98.7% of content on the Internet, I restrict my internet viewing to stuff that I like.

Which means my Internet reading is essentially a couple of news sites, and various feminist blogs with the odd site about raising gender non-conforming kids thrown in, because, well, because those sites are where my passions for feminism and child rearing kind of come together.

Because make no mistake: raising gender non-conforming kids is the frontline of feminist mothering. Nothing will test you as a feminist mother more than watching your children try to swim in the real-life waters off the coast of your island of theories.

And nothing has illustrated this better lately than this clip of bullying from ABC’s What Would You Do. I call it bullying because, baby, that’s what it is.

What makes this bullying appear so much worse than normal – so much worse that it can be hard to even see it as bullying – is that depicts a small child being bullied by adults. And not only by his/her mother (who was of course only an actress), but by random strangers.

If these people came across this kid and started beating the crap out of him because he wasn’t ‘behaving right’, we’d see it more clearly. What we see instead are these adults beating the crap out of him psychologically. He/she is being bullied for not ‘behaving right’ – for not keeping within the confines of his or her gender.

The concerned/disgusted looks, the sotto voce remarks, the general view mum has to ‘stop it now’. All of this tell the child clearly that he/she is not acceptable. That they are not acceptable as they are. That they must change.

And people will do this to a child on Halloween, for crap’s sake; the one night of the year when we are supposed to be dressed as ‘something else’.

I didn’t see it as bullying at first either. What called it out to me was the appearance of the wonderful Sally at the end. That, and the fact that I almost cried when she appeared simply because, finally, somebody did see what was happening and immediately showed compassion to the child.

It should not bring tears to my eyes simply to watch an adult respect a child as a human being.

Yet another reason why gender can kiss my arse.

About MistressofBoogie

Feminist. Loud-mouth. Sometimes those two are linked. Sometimes not. View all posts by MistressofBoogie

4 responses to “Gender My Arse: Part III

  • The Green Study

    My daughter has gone through some of this, but I think it’s much tougher for boys. Adults can be incredibly stupid at times – and that’s who kids take the lead from.

    • MistressofBoogie

      I think undoubtedly it’s tougher for boys, simply because, on a level, we understand girls wanting to ‘be boys’ because we understand that society holds boys in higher esteem than girls, so wanting to ‘trade up’ makes sense to us. But wanting to ‘trade down’? Are you kidding, boy? You want to look like a girl?? What s wrong with you??

  • Tannis

    When I saw this clip it was all I could do to not find some random person on the street to pummel. I mean, WHAT IN THE EVER LOVING HELL IS WRONG WITH YOU PEOPLE?!?!? But you knew that.

    • MistressofBoogie

      Yeah, I knew that (sigh).
      However, I’m still completely in the dark about what in the ever loving hell IS wrong with people…

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