Rosemary McLeod: I don’t want to be intimate with strangers

Stuff co.nz 2 March 2017
Family First Comment: A balanced commentary on #AskMeFirst from someone who has thought the whole issue through.

OPINION: The dunny drama of 2017 was a happy moment for liberal-minded people to puff out their chests, preen, and congratulate themselves for being more progressive than bores like Family First. But they weren’t entirely heroic.

It is galling to be patronised, and what’s so straightforward anyway about a trans student at an all-girls school winning the right to use the girls’ toilets, as opposed to identically equipped gender-neutral ones?

And why must a fellow student who says she, along with other students, wasn’t consulted, and had her rights overlooked, be instantly shouted down?

I know drowning out what you don’t want to hear is a time-honoured way of silencing people, but it’s a form of bullying, actually; never quite admirable, always alienating.

This was about the protesting teenage girl at the anonymous school as much as the trans teenager, and while both could feel justified in being upset, they were equally matched.

Girl A, who complained, but says she has no personal grudge going, got involved with Family First as supporters, while girl B, the transgender, knew she would have the Human Rights Commission and all advocacy groups for transgender people on her side.

Girl A’s sidekicks are unpopular conservatives, while girl B’s are today’s liberal right-thinkers. And there are learnings to be had here, as opposed to lessons, which you have – or ought to – at school.
READ MORE: http://www.stuff.co.nz/dominion-post/comment/columnists/89923312/rosemary-mcleod-i-dont-want-to-be-intimate-with-strangers

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