Saturday, August 22, 2009

Inter Sex: Neither Man, Nor Woman.

Yeah, I like this Black Looks article about the same issue...

Not a man. But not a Woman, either. So, what is she/he?
No, don’t laugh. Because the question that I ask is something that is a daily occurrence. We tend not to think about it. It is automatic. A child is born, and we ask, girl or boy? Our minds have been wound like that. It must be a girl or boy. It cannot be neither of the two and it still is a human being. At least, that is ‘common sense’. Or is it?
The Inter-sex. Neither male nor female.
I first faced this when there was a hullabaloo about Julius. The only male who attended Gayaza High School, one of the premier girls’ (if not THE premier) girls’ college in Uganda. Oh yeah. The guy went ahead and wrote his amazing story in a book, “From Julie to Julius”. A real live story of an inter-sex person living and working in Uganda. Remember Nsubuga Aldrine, the guy who railed against homosexuality in football in Uganda? He was incensed at the questions on Julius’s sex. He had known the guy as a guy, and he was a friend, Aldrine insisted. The guy was a guy’s guy, and let those who questioned his manliness go to hell. To give him his due, Aldrine did defend a friend, from the malicious gossip of the Ugandan society.
I have talked to Julius. He was (or is) a staunch Christian. Attending Kampala Pentecostal Church, the mega church in the middle of Kampala. And when Julius wanted to get married, the church asked him for ‘proofs’ of his maleness. Needless to say, the wedding did happen, but not with the blessing of KPC, now Watoto Church.
Ok, so, now I begin my rant. Or, to educate a tiny, big lil sis of mine, here is the whine.
In the large, wide, heterosexual world ‘sexual minorities’ do not exist, we are punished for being different. That is not a whine. That is reality. That is what happens on a daily, hourly basis. It is not that we don’t exist. It is that we are not thought to exist, and as such, we are excluded from church, from the things which you a good, healthy, heterosexual takes for granted.
So, Julius became a scandal. Like Caster Semenya is at the moment.
Just like good old gug is a scandal. Oh, for gug, it is because he is a male who falls in love with other males. Other men. Different from usual? Of course. But does it happen? Yes, it does. And because it is not common, because it is not the norm, that does not mean that the majority should have a right to persecute and exclude me. Just because I am different.
Now, there ends the whine. Flick, flick, flick. The mud does feel sticky. Flick it off.
Now, now, now. Princess, consider the beauty of our world. The diversity, and what is as it is. You have heard of that runner, the one who is under investigation. So, what will happen after the investigation, and the debate by the experts. Will Caster Semenya be a man or a woman? What will the panel of experts decide? What will happen when the Caster gets to the point of getting married? What will the church say?
What does this say, what challenge do you face here? To stop thinking in staid, old boxes. Life is life. It is not clear black and whites. It is the very shades of the rainbow. It is grays and greens and whites and blacks. It is pale greens and dark oranges, purples and pinks. Life is not an absolute. And, life is beautiful as in-absolute as it is.
I think it is Spiralx who once commented that straight people are boring… And the gay are ‘fabulous’. I think what he meant was that those who consider themselves straight tend to think in a box that is boring. Talk sex, children, parentage, etc, etc. Nevender will come charging with the Bible in hand, to condemn and hit me with it. Me, I will dance and tease him with words. He will not understand me. Because, in his world, god made them male and female. And male has sex with females. Not male with male, not female with female. So, when one who is neither male nor female steps out of God’s creation, what will Nevender say? Do you still read this blog, dude? If you do, what do you say? Should KPC have married Julius? Or not? Is Caster Semenya a man or woman? Is Caster part of God’s beautiful, rainbow varied creation? Yes or no? A challenge to your box of thinking.
To me, proof that the creator never thought in terms of absolutes. Julius, and Castor are, beautiful human beings. Whatever sex a ‘panel of experts’ labels them, they are human beings, like you and me. And, they deserve all the blessings (and curses) that our humanity and our legal systems endow us with. Not to be excluded. Not to be shamed. But to be affirmed. To be held close to heart. To be understood.
Here is to love of all human beings.


Leonard said...

¨Here is to love all human beings¨ gug

Make that a double.

John Powers said...

No, make that a triple! Beautiful post!

Skorrdal said...

Thanks! A great post!

Nick Jewitt said...

Intersex - it is interesting and something I know very little about. Isn't it easy as Gays to imitate our homophobic "friends" and think in 'boxes'? Gay, straight, man, woman. Back here in UK even gays are prejudiced against inter-generational relationships (no, I am NOT talking about sex with a child), for example a couple with a 25 year age gap, 50 and 25 years for example. I did not find that prejudice in Uganda. But in Uganda I did find a prejudice that if your preference is for non-anal sex then you are not really having sex at all, or you are not "really" Gay.
My own 'box-thinking' is challenged by intersex people, and even more by those who decide to have surgery or hormone treatment to change their physical sex. I struggle with my bias, thank you Gug for the challenge!

Post a Comment