Thursday, 25 February 2016

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It's 1pm on a Thursday, my nose is all red because of this flu, and I should be studying, but instead I'm writing this. Because something came up that I just couldn't ignore. Something that made me completely furious.

There's this one political party in Finland that seems to be all about the 50s or something. (You all know which one I'm talking about.) Well, they have now started a campaign to "stop confusing kids and teenagers" because "there are only two genders". Their announcement also states that "everyone can proudly be what they are". Right. As long as they choose from two options. Or, actually, they aren't even supposed to choose. They're just supposed to look at their genitals.

Seriously. What. The. Fuck. And you know what the worst part is? Usually this kind of bullshit is started by the middle-aged straight white men of this party, who think they can discriminate against everyone and everything they don't consider normal. But this time it's the young ones. People that are around my age. 

Apparently I've been living in some kind of a bubble of openness because I honestly thought it wouldn't be possible to be a person in their twenties and think like that anymore. At least not a person who's involved in politics and is most likely highly educated. I'm just downright shocked. It's 2016, for God's sake. This shocks me because I thought the world was changing and becoming more accepting for all kinds of people. And then these idiots come and wreck it all. 

This is bullying. There's no other way to say it. This is a horrifying public violation of human rights. Don't these people understand how many individuals they're hurting right now? How many already insecure children and teenagers are stepping back into their shells? And all just because they're constantly told to be something they're not, to be what everyone else wants them to be. 

And that's not all. These people didn't even bother checking the facts before starting their campaign. 

First of all, people have to stop confusing sex and gender. They are two different things. This might be perplexing for us Finns, since we only have one word to describe both, but here's some help if you have trouble understanding this: 

"Biological Gender (sex) includes physical attributes such as external genitalia, 
sex chromosomes, gonads, sex hormones, and internal reproductive structures. 
At birth, it is used to assign sex, that is, to identify individuals as male or female. 
Gender on the other hand is far more complicated. It is the complex interrelationship 
between an individual’s sex (gender biology), one’s internal sense of self as male, 
female, both or neither (gender identity) as well as one’s outward presentations and 
behaviors (gender expression) related to that perception, including their gender role. 
Together, the intersection of these three dimensions produces one’s authentic sense 
of gender, both in how people experience their own gender as well as how others perceive it."

Now that we got that cleared up, we can move on to the next issue: people who understand that sex and gender are not synonyms but still think your sex defines your gender. Well, good news. Even if you think your sex is what you are for the rest of your life, you still don't have to be either male or female, as there are different combinations of chromosomes that make you something else. I'm no expert in the biology talk, so I hope this video helps you understand. But you know, this doesn't really matter because how you identify is what you are. This is just for those of you who want scientifical proof of everything. 

So, basically, even if you are born with some unusual combination of chromosomes and doctors don't really know what they should call you, you can still identify as male or female. And the other way around. No one but you can tell you what your gender is. 

And one more thing: no one is trying to purposefully confuse the kids, it's the opposite. Feminists are trying to tell confused kids that they are valid, that they matter and they don't have to become something they're not. Also, no one is saying it's not ok to be a boy or a girl. Giving someone the rights they deserve doesn't take yours away. This campaign kind of made me lose hope in humanity once again, but let's keep fighting back. There's still a reasonable number of people with some common sense, so we have to educate the less fortunate, right? 

If you don't fit into the two boxes that you've been offered, don't stop fighting back. They'll take silence as acceptance, so don't stay quiet. Keep being yourself. You have the right to live your life to the fullest no matter what your gender is, so don't let these people walk all over you. You are strong, I believe in you.