Wednesday, April 29, 2015

   Former Cream bass player Jack Bruce?  Nope...
   Cincinnati Reds right fielder Jay Bruce ("The Beaumont Bomber")?  Nuh uh...
   Former TV & screenwriter Bruce Vilanch? Uh, no...
   The shark from "Finding Nemo"?!?  The shark from "Jaws"?!? No way...
   Former Buffalo Bills defensive end Bruce Smith?  Er, nope...
   Former oldies DJ "Bruce "Cousin Brucie" Morrow?   OK, now you're being silly...
   Well, then who could the above capitalized, bolded, italicized, and underlined title possibly represent, Olivia?!?!?

    I am talking, of course, about the person whose name has been on more lips lately than Chapstick, none other than the winner of the 1976 Olympic gold medal in the decathlon, Bruce Jenner. I've not been actually asked for my opinion on the whole media circus this story has become; but, damn the torpedoes, you're gonna get it anyway!!! It's MY blog, and that's what this edition of it will talk about!!!

    I first remember cheering Bruce Jenner on in his aforementioned decathlon victory. I was ten years old. I was one of many millions of Americans who rooted for Bruce Jenner in that bicentennial year. Time passed, and I grew older and so did Bruce. And I had no way of knowing that he and I were going through the exact same thing... gender dysphoria. We both maintained that "macho" facade (he was better at that; and indeed, most things, than I was...), but the underlying problem remained for both of us. In the late 80's, he had begun to receive treatment for his persistent gender dysphoria, where I had not even begun to understand mine. (Everyone transitions in their own time... even heroes.) He ceased receiving hormones during that time though, for fear of hurting his family.

    More recently, I'd known that Bruce Jenner was on a popular reality TV show (not having ever watched the show I've alluded to, I hadn't known he'd separated from Kris until about a week ago)...
Due to the pervasive tabloid news coverage surrounding him, I and many others had begun to wonder and speculate about him. Last year, I finally began to understand that I was transgender. Some of the rumors floating around about Bruce Jenner had suggested that he might be as well.

     Finally, the long-awaited day of the big interview came and went. I think it answered some questions, but it also raised a few... Was Bruce an idiot? Was he immoral? Was he faking being transgender just to get attention? Would he ever be considered a "real woman" without vaginoplasty? Would this interview set the trans movement back an entire generation?!?

    Initially, I had been worried that a badly handled interview would, indeed set the trans movement back 20 years; but from what I've seen, (links to interview posted on my Facebook profile) it was handled with a quiet dignity, and was not sensationalized in the least. 
Bruce is definitely not an idiot, nor is he (using his requested name & pronouns until he tells us different) immoral from what I've seen... The concept of this whole thing being used as a promotional gimmick was raised in the interview itself, & Bruce laughed it off. I don't think Bruce needs any more attention... He was on a top-rated reality show, and is still an American Olympic legend, so pretty much EVERYONE already knows who he is... As far as "never being a 'real woman'  without vaginoplasty", who's to say that that's not exactly what he's looking to do? (& isn't it considered invasive for anyone, even other trans people, to ask questions or make assumptions about a person's genitals, anyway?!?)

 I'll sum up thusly: I saw the interview; & to me, Bruce appeared to be genuine. (as far as the tears and the like; as anyone who's watched the final season of "CHiPs" can attest, he's not that good an actor...) It is that perception of this whole affair that leads me to throw my support firmly behind Bruce Jenner. (for what little my, or anyone else's moral support is actually worth) He said he wants to do some good & change the world... I support him in this aspect as well. As to what will happen in the future, that's anyone's guess...I eagerly await the next occurence in the saga this has become; and dearly hope that trans people of color; and who are other otherwise unfairly discriminated against are helped by not only the exposure, but the education it may provide.

    #teamjenner    Go, Bruce!!! Let's do some good!!!

    How about that, kids?!? I unknowingly had something in common with the athlete I'd rooted for long ago...  Bruce Jenner's story, his vulnerability, and his honesty has already done quite a lot to raise dialogue and recognition of transgender people worldwide... and others who might not have been Olympic medalists are coming forth to tell their stories as well. This is wonderful, because it could lead to a huge positive difference in the way transgender people are viewed. We're not all perverts... we're not all freaks... we're not all "abominations before the Lord" (as some Bible-thumpers might lead you to believe...) We're all just people; and so is Bruce Jenner. 
He was a hero then, and he's got the opportunity to be a hero now. I'll be cheering for him to be victorious yet again.


1 comment:

  1. I did a little messing around with the typeface and stuff on this article… Evidently, that didn't work out for the best. But I'd like to think that the views expressed, which are completely my own, outweigh any problems that one may have reading the article.