I applaud Caitlyn’s bravery; I applaud her bringing transgender issues to the family dining table; but I question flaunting her flaming sexuality… which to my bra-burning generation, reduces women to empty-headed Barbies.
Women have spent generations proving (trying to prove) that we are more than empty vessels, and with just one Vanity Fair cover photographed by Annie Leibovitz, enlightenment has come to a screeching halt. Maybe not a halt… more like a stumble.
Hopefully, Caitlyn has brought gender issues to the fore. Maybe the value of her over-the-top, “outing” is more about the questions than the answers. I don’t think that Caitlyn is the answer, but the highly sexualized photos, prompt us to question. What defines a man? What defines a woman?
A couple of blogs ago I wrote about Westcliffe’s Jazz Camp at which professional musicians, performing together as Convergence, mentor aspiring middle and high school jazz students. The youth of the musicians and the quality of the musicianship gives me hope that with passion and talent, maybe the next generation will do better than we have.
Out of the forty students, three were girls. I was thrilled to see the girls. Not tokens but players. But I couldn’t take my eyes off the trumpet player.
Yes, I was looking at her clothing, but her dress said so much about her. Her dress said that she was confident and happy with her identity. I could only envy her self-assuredness because it was such a contrast to my own amorphousness at her age. You never would have found me wearing baggy basketball shorts and exposing an uneven tan line!
I would not repeat my high school years if you paid me. I was shy. I slunk down the hallways hoping that no one would notice me. I tried hard to be invisible. Doing that called for dressing just like all the other girls. We didn’t wear uniforms, but uniformity of thought, behavior, and dress was important. Heaven forbid that you walked your own walk.
Maybe we should thank Caitlyn for putting the hard-to-chew grizzle on the plate.