Whether it be social, recreational, or professional, some of what represents me is here. Post a comment, or contact me at should you so desire.

The posts are in reverse chronological order, and are pegged by topic on the links to the left. For more of an introduction, please see the About this site page listed above.

Tuesday, 6 December 2011

Expectations versus celebrations

I think I must be pretty ignorant of certain things.

I am actually getting tired of people celebrating and pointing out when a commercial portrays gay relationships, or when a TV show has a variety of ethnicity.

The concept of same-sex activities and relationships has existed for quite a long time now. It's not novel, and it's been seen in historical references, fiction, myth, and as a commonplace thing for an incredibly long time now. I am not a history major so I will try not to err too much here by giving dates, but homosexuality was quite common in ancient Greece, as I'm given to understand. It permeated their culture and their myth. I'm sure it existed much throughout all of history, but I guess I don't have the research to prove it. At the very least, it has been known to exist for a long time now.

Additionally, I understand that people with certain backgrounds push(ed) around those of a different background. I acknowledge the hardship, the terrifying ordeal and treatment with which anyone not generally accepted by the ruling demographic has had to deal.

Yes, okay, for too long, society at large made people who were involved in same-sex activities feel terrible, scared, hated, shunned, etc. It was, and I guess is, pretty awful behaviour and I honestly wish none of it had ever happened. But, is it still this way?

I was raised to treat everyone equally, until they proved otherwise. That last part was not actually part of my childhood lessons, but I find I give people more credit than they deserve sometimes. Still, better to hope that humanity is decent and competent than otherwise.

I grew up in a town where the citizens had one colour to their skin, a seemingly primarily heterosexual nature, and worshiped around one of several denominations of Christianity. I heard racist jokes and I heard the vulgar depictions of same-sex. Gay was mistaken as an adjective for stupid in my town. But I never stood for it. I would tell people they were wrong, and call them ignorant, or stupid, as the case called for. I've never understood putting people in a box, and I've never understood making claims about an entire group of people especially if you don't know anything about them.

I'm not perfect, but neither is anyone else I've met, sorry to burst the bubble of those of you I know. And, I know this next point is really going to upset a lot of people, but I hope you understand where I'm coming from:

All these "celebrations" over things like lesbians being in a KY commercial, people of different backgrounds being successful in business, theatre, or otherwise, well, it's great. But, sometimes these celebrations make it seem like such a miracle that something like this has happened. When people point out how amazing it was that this or that feature homosexuality or an equality of ethnic backgrounds, I look at them and say, "" Being gay is not a reason to celebrate, being straight certainly hasn't been. One of them is the way I am, and one of them is not. It's neither a great thing, or a bad thing, it's just what I like and it hasn't hurt anyone so far...except for breakups. Being a Caucasian male might have paved a lot of the way for me, but I certainly had no handouts. I come from a low income family, one that laments not being able to help me financially, one whose background in nigh-poverty has taught me a lot about judging things, and people, by its quality, not by labels or surface observations.

This is where I'm ignorant. I am not in a liberal arts degree, I do not follow the news, nor am I particularly connected to issues of human rights. I am an engineer, and even the stereotypes concerning that profession have changed. My current class of students has the same amount of girls as guys, and the first year student body has more girls in it than I've ever seen before. In terms of race, it's a hodgepodge, a mixture of people from all over the place.

And THAT'S THE THING: In engineering, no one cares if you're man, woman, child, or talking duck, they care if you know what you're doing. If a talking duck came into one of my classes and proved me wrong in a presentation about something, no one would marvel at the amazing ability of the duck speaking despite common sense, and it's own evolutionary background, no they would just consider its point on the error in my presentation, nod their heads and admire the fact that it was right, and suggest I get back to the drawing board.

And that's the way I try to see the world. I will presume you are a decent, competent person until you prove me wrong. I will not label you, think I'm better or worse than you, prejudge, joke unfairly about a group of you, no I will go on living my life, hoping to make your acquaintance. Celebrating that which should be commonplace is not only foolish, it's annoying.

N.B. I realize that not many view the world as I do. I'm sure the inequality of the groups I mentioned above, among others, is so prevalent that you'll be angry that I'm not seeing it. But, the fact is, I don't because I choose not to live that way. If I see injustice, you can rest assured I'll swoop down on it like Batman himself, but so far, it has not affected me so I have not had cause to effect change. Representation is hard to get, so I will make more of an effort to recognize those hard-fought battles you've won. But, don't celebrate the scraps from the table, demand the meal.

Long story short, stop celebrating things which you should expect, instead, make sure you get what you deserve.


  1. At first, this made me a bit angry, but then I realized that there is an entire faction of feminist-lesbians who believe exactly what you said. They insist on not celebrating the small victories, and instead question why we haven't managed to achieve anything else. I forget the exact name for this specific group... but you aren't alone.

  2. The thing is, showing two same-sex people
    being happy is one thing, showing two same-sex people being happy and looking at the camera as if to say, "What? You weren't expecting that, were you?" is a tad presumptuous. With me, I've never had an issue or saw it as strange that anyone would want to love anyone else, same sex or otherwise. So, sometimes, these commercials, which are clearly not aimed at me, frustrate me because it'd be like me saying, "Look, I have a sandwich!" and other people thinking..."So? Glad you're happy, I guess."

  3. I think I'd be excited if you had a sandwich. It would mean that there's potential for you to share that sandwich with me, and food is yummy.