A Rant Of Sorts

Hey. So, the other day I shared a video on Facebook (can’t find the link now, sorry). The video itself was about how you shouldn’t just assume someone wants to be called a “he” or a “she” and to call someone “them” instead until you discover their preference. I commented how I get that some people don’t identify as a male or female and just want to be known as, like, a person or a banana or something, and that if they want to designate a gender-neutral word, they can feel free, but they shouldn’t butcher the English language to do it, because “they” is a plural word, not a singular one.

Someone commented back — very snootily (is that a word?), I might add — about how:

  1. it’s obvious that I have no respect for people who struggle with gender identify because I dared to use the word banana,
  2. “they” actually isn’t a plural word, and besides, we create the English language so therefore that makes it the right usage,
  3. and basically how I’m an intolerant little shit who steals candy from babies and kills puppies and shit.
What The Hell GIF

original image found here

First of all, let me say this: I get that some people don’t think of themselves as male or female. Just because I used a banana in my example doesn’t mean I’m a fucking moron. I used it to illustrate a point, which is how absurd it is that people are trying to identify as something other than a person (by that, I mean that they’re trying to come up with concepts like “non-binary” and shit instead of just saying they identify as a human being, which would be the simplest way).

I have autism. Yes, it may not seem like it because I’m what is considered “high-functioning”, but that doesn’t mean I’m normal. I’m not. Social cues don’t register in my brain. If there was a test on reading body language, I would probably score a 10, because odds are that I would at least get a couple questions right by chance. Sometimes I say things that people take to be insulting when I meant no harm by it, and sometimes I take things that others say as insults even though they aren’t. I just don’t know. Something is programmed wrong in my brain. I can’t control it. That doesn’t mean I’m a dumbass (I actually have a genius IQ, and people with autism tend to be smarter overall than those who don’t have autism).

Now on to the second point. “They” is a plural fucking word. It is used to describe two or more people, among other things. The official definition of the word in the Oxford English Dictionary is as follows:

[third person plural] Used to refer to two or more people or things previously mentioned or easily identified. ‘the two men could get life sentences if they are convicted’

And:

[singular third person plural] Used to refer to a person of unspecified gender. ‘ask a friend if they could help’

The Dictionary.com definition is:

nominative plural of he, she, and it

And:

(used with a singular indefinite pronoun or singular noun antecedent in place of the definite masculine he or the definite feminine she): Whoever is of voting age, whether they are interested in politics or not, should vote.

And by the way, the second definitions from both sources doesn’t mean that you can substitute the word “they” with “he” or “she” at will; it means that if you’re discussing a non-specified person, or a generalized person (in this case, a friend and a voter, respectively), then it is acceptable to use the word “they” to describe that person.

As for the third point, I don’t fucking care what you think of me.

Bazinga I Don't Care GIF

original image found here

You don’t fucking matter. I can count on two hands the people / groups of people whose opinions matter to me, and you sure as hell aren’t even close to being one of them. However, because I am using this post to negate your entire argument, I will say that I don’t fucking care what the hell you choose to identify as. It’s not my problem. It’s not for me to judge, unless you actually want to identify as a banana, in which case shut the fuck up (with the exceptions being actual bananas; they can identify as bananas). Just because I made a joke about it doesn’t mean I disrespect the people who actually struggle with gender identity and all that crap. It just means I made a fucking joke. People joke about things they shouldn’t all the time. I couldn’t even tell you the number of autism-related jokes I’ve heard. There are four I can find videos of and one more that I can think of (The Aspy’s) off the top of my head in Family Guy alone (by the way, I laughed my ass off while watching them). And don’t you dare fucking tell me that autism can’t compare to gender identity as a problem, because while it might not be on the same page on the types of issues that arise, you’re an ignorant, naive SOB if you think living with autism isn’t a challenge every second of every day.

So yeah, I don’t think it’s acceptable to use “they” to describe a single, specific person. If you really want to eliminate gender roles, come up with a gender-neutral word, like we have “he” for a male and “she” for a female (traditionally). [EDIT (I meant to include this initially): Maybe the problem isn’t that people don’t identify as a “he” or a “she”; maybe the problem is that we all have pre-conceived notions about what it means to be a “he” or a “she”.] Also, because I know this will come up: this is not meant as an “attack” against the person who disrespectfully “disagreed” with my point of view, this is meant as a response to said person (and there’s another way to avoid using “him”, “her”, or “them”; who knew?!).

I think that’s about it. This was a really long post, and I know I didn’t try as hard to speak in a professional tone, as I do with politics, because I was just so pissed off, and for that, I do apologize. However, this needed to be said, and while I’m sure there are many nicer ways to say it, I think this best represents my feelings. If you have any questions about how to interpret something written here, don’t just assume I’m trying to insult someone; ask me what I mean, okay? Seriously, I’m not trying to be an asshole (if I were, there would be absolutely no doubt in anyone’s mind, even in the mind of an autistic person, because when I’m being bitchy, I make it painfully obvious so my words aren’t misconstrued as sarcastic or anything).

Thank you to all who kept reading until the end.

-Sam

Advertisements

I Almost Shook The Hand Of My Dead Classmate’s Father

This past week has been crazy, and not in a good way. Not at all. Crazy as in this-is-something-you-only-hear-about-on-the-news-and-never-think-it’s-gonna-happen-to-you crazy.

Four teenagers got into an accident that resulted in one flipped car, two people injured, and one girl killed. Erika Hall was 16 years old. She’ll never see 17.

I first saw the news on Facebook. I was scrolling through my news feed and my friend’s post caught my eye. It was something about “the town lost another beautiful face RIP Erika” or something like that. I got this sinking feeling in my chest, and though “no, it’s gotta be another Erika.”

But it wasn’t.

I pressed the “Home” button to refresh my news feed. All of a sudden, there’s a bunch more of those posts, one of them tagging Erika Hall. I thought “ohshitohshitohshitohshitohshit.” Honestly, I’m surprised I was able to form any thought at all. I began to shake, but clicked on the name. I had to know.

In my heart, I already did.

It was here. My former classmate’s Facebook page. It was tagged in a post about her being dead… I sat next to her for a freaking year in 7th grade! And she was dead. She’s dead. Dead. Erika Hall is dead. I’m waiting for it to actually sink in. I thought typing it a few times would help. It didn’t.

I stared at my computer screen for a few minutes, feeling numb. It felt like forever. I just couldn’t comprehend it. How could she have died? She was supposed to do great things in life! She was so happy, wild and free, a fun person to be around. And she’s gone.

Erika

What do you do in this kind of situation? I think it’s different for everyone. For me, I just slowly act as if nothing happened, hoping that acting this way will make it true.

But it didn’t.

My mom was on Facebook or checking her email or something when she called me down from my room, where I was doing homework. She asked if I knew an Erika Hall. I was just like, yeah, I know, she died. Just like that. I think I regret that the most. Erika deserves more, even if I was delusionally trying to bring her back from the dead.

That was April 26. Fast forward to Wednesday, April 30. My school’s memorial service for her. I spent the first ten minutes of it not there, trying to be nice and not interrupt my teacher. Turns out, all I had to do was give up and walk out. My teacher asked where I was going, I replied “the service” and he nodded.

I wish I’d known that earlier.

I got the service (my friend Christina was with me) to find that the doors to the chapel were already closed. I peeked my head in the office and asked if we could quietly go in. The secretary said she didn’t think so, but we had to ask the vice principal. So we ran to Ms. McGuire’s office, halfway across the school, only to find out that yes, we could in fact go inside. So we ran back to the chapel and quietly sat down at the back.

I didn’t cry until Erika’s dad went up to talk. That was when I lost it. It’s just not fair. Why does he have to live without his daughter? Kids are supposed to bury their parents, not the other way around!

He only spoke for about a minute, though. After that, the priest said one short prayer, and then we all migrated into the AAC (Academic Achievement Center, just another name for library) for a power point with a bunch of pictures of Erika. It was beautiful.

It shouldn’t have had to happen.

After the power point was over, her dad thanked everyone for being here. Then he went around to hug everyone.

When he got to me, I was boxed in by Christina, so he reached to shake my hand. I didn’t think about it- I didn’t have to. I stood up and reached over Christina to give him a hug. Something told me Christina wouldn’t mind.

After I hugged him, I sat back down, shaking, and just stared straight ahead. I kept thinking, over and over again, I just hugged my dead friend’s father. It was so peaceful.

I’d trade it in a heartbeat for her to be here.

Even now, thinking about it, I’m shaking a little. It’s crazy. I just, it never should’ve happened. I never should’ve met Erika’s father, because, had she never died, I never would’ve met him. And, also, part of it felt so surreal, it was so weird. I can’t really explain it.

I don’t know why this happened. I just know it shouldn’t have happened. Why should a 16-year-old girl have to die?

She shouldn’t.

But there’s nothing I can do about it now, no matter how much I wish there was. I guess I’ll just have to live with it.

RIP Erika Hall

-Sam

I Can’t Think Of A Title

Hey. Well, that title-that’s-not-a-title works, actually. It’s fitting, because there’re no words. Sorry, I’m getting ahead of myself. Let me start when I found out about the video. Someone posted it on Facebook in the group Life with Autumn, a group supporting Autumn, a teenage girl fighting cancer. Now that I think about it, I don’t really know why (you’ll see why I say this when you watch the video). Anyways, this video it made me sob, and my heart hasn’t stopped hurting yet, even though I watched it a half hour ago. It’s a mother singing a song she wrote to her daughter dying of cancer. Her daughter is lying in the bed in the video. She’s in a coma. Here, watch it:

I felt compelled to share this. Sorry for the short post, but I have no more to say. Bye.

-Sam

Freedom Of Speech Has Turned Into Keep Your Damn Opinions To Yourself

Hey. So, Gabby (a.k.a. my best friend) and I just had a conversation on Facebook. Do you want to know what it was about? She told me to stop putting my opinions about abortion on Facebook, because it’s a controversial topic, which makes it wrong for me to post my opinions about it. Now, since I believe in freedom of speech, and since the country in which I live in is supposed to believe in it as well (even though it doesn’t anymore, but we’ll get into that in a second), I’ll say that yes, I believe abortion is wrong. It’s just what I feel is right. But if you want a real reason for my thinking (which I don’t need to give, but I’m going to anyway), then I’ll say to you what I say to everyone who asks me for a “real” reason (because following my heart doesn’t count, right?) : if scientists found a few cells on another planet, they would flip out and be like “OMG we found life!!” So, why aren’t a few cells in a woman’s body considered life?

Alright, that’s it for my opinion on abortion. Now, back to the real reason for this post. As I was saying, Gabby was saying how I shouldn’t put it on Facebook. And if you want to hear our conversation in exact words (with […] inserted for irrelevant stuff that has nothing to do with this topic), then here:

Stop putting this abort option shit on Facebook -_-  it’s an opinion. Sharing yours is your right. But it’s controversial at the moment. So it’s MESSED for you to be posting about it. Just saying (/*_*)/ so staaahp        -Gabby

it’s also my right to express my opinion… freedon of speech… I don’t care what others think, it’s killing a baby -me (Sam)

But it’s controversial -Gabby

so what? -me (Sam)

I can’t express my opinion because it might conflict with others’ opinions? -me (Sam)

if we went by that, then the world would b silent -me (Sam)

Then don’t put it on Facebook -_-  -Gabby

And then she skipped back to our previous conversation (the […] in the above conversation) and our conversation about my post on abortion was pretty much over. But do you see what I’m saying? America had NO freedom of speech anymore. And don’t blame all of it on Obama, people- as much as I dislike him, this is probably the only thing that isn’t totally his fault. This happened because of society.

First, let me just use the example that I used against my dad the other day (which I probably shouldn’t have, since I was getting in trouble, but whatever 🙂 ): if no one asked questions, or voiced their opinions, or acted on their opinions, all the Jews would be dead. Hitler would’ve been successful if we didn’t question him, didn’t act on our opinions that the Jews are not a “diseased race,” and the Jewish race would be extinct, and who knows how hellish the world would be today. My point is, voiced opinions make the world a better place.

Now, there’s a time, and a place, to voice those opinions. When you’re getting in trouble for having an attitude with your parents, like I was? Well, that’s probably not my best timing (although, I never seem to have good timing, so who knows!). But when you’re on Facebook, and you have the option to share anything? Go right ahead! Anyone who doesn’t like it can get the hell out and unfriend you! Who cares?! Obviously, if they unfriend you because of you voicing your opinions, they aren’t a good “friend” anyways, if they were even your friend go begin with. What’s the point of communicating with someone who can’t respect your opinion, anyways?

Nowadays, even the social media is all over you for expressing your opinion. For example, take Phil Robertson. His opinion on being gay is that it’s wrong. Although personally I don’t agree with him, I respect his opinion because he is supposed to have freedom of speech (but apparently he doesn’t!). And like I said in a previous post, he wasn’t threatening to the gay people, so therefore everyone should calm down because he did nothing wrong. He was merely expressing his opinion. Despite the fact that he could have done this in a better way, it’s his right. He shouldn’t have to hide his opinions just because they conflict with the national majority. Every single person has the right to freedom of speech, meaning they should be able to freely express their opinions without being shunned by the public. Keyword is should, since this doesn’t happen.

I’m sorry, I guess I just don’t understand what’s so bad about stating your opinion when it doesn’t agree with others’. Actually, that’s the best time to give your input, when it contradicts others’ opinions. You want to know why? Because it enriched a conversation, a topic, a discussion, a debate, whatever it is that’s going on. Especially when it’s a controversial topic. Those are the best discussions to have, I believe, because it’s about a matter of opinions, so you have to rely on yourself to convince others that your idea or view is right.

I’m not saying that people should just drop everything and believe every word that comes out of a person’s mouth, because that’s not right. What should happen is that you state your opinion, and then, if it’s relevant to the topic (for example, backing up my opinion on gay rights is not relevant to this post, so I didn’t, and  I backed up my views on abortion to prove a point), you back up your opinion. So, if any of you have any comments about this, I expect them to be backed up, because that would be relevant (most likely!).

But the question I ask you is this: why are we so unaccepting of others’ opinions, though we’d do anything to defend our own if we were under fire for them like Phil Robertson was? Why do we think “politically correct” is not speaking our minds and hearts, and just letting people do whatever they want? And if that’s really politically correct, then I say to you, screw it! Why should we protect others if that means not defending ourselves?! We come first (unless you have children, because then I’m pretty sure they come before anything else, right?)! We need to express our feelings, our opinions, our views, our beliefs, and do this without worrying about offending others. Because you know what? No matter what, you’re going to offend someone. Hell, it offends me when people do stuff like what Gabby pulled! So stop, okay?! Just stop!

Alright, now that I’ve gotten that across, I’ll leave you with this: people are always waiting, always listening for your take on different events, your opinion of different things. So what are you going to do? Are you going to give them what they want? Or are you going to leave them hanging? No matter what you decide to do in this moment, just remember that the microphone’s always waiting in the next.

-Sam

P.S. As always, the original image URLs can be found by clicking on the images.

I. Freaking. Hate. Not. Being. Able. To. Breathe!!

Hey. Well, in case you couldn’t guess from the title, I’m still somewhat sick. My mom doesn’t believe it’s asthma, though, and if it is, not totally. She thinks its more nasal congestion. Anyways, either way, I’m still stuck not being able to breath right. So, yeah, I’m screwed for now- I can’t do anything normally. Sorry for the short post, but I want to go play a game on Facebook. Bye!

-Sam

My Horoscope

Hey. So, I was trolling Facebook, and came across a post that someone shared that someone shared that someone shared… well, you get the point. Anyway, it was about a horoscope. This person commented on how the horoscope was really accurate for them, so I decided to check it out. It led me to this blog post. To my surprise, it was really accurate for me as well. Like, creepily accurate. Here’s my Virgo horoscope:

VIRGO – The One that Waits (August 23 to September 22)
Dominant in relationships. Someone loves them right now. Always wants the last word. Caring. Smart. Loud. Loyal. Easy to talk to. Everything you ever wanted. Easy to please. A pushover. Loves to gamble and take chances. Needs to have the last say in everything. They think they know everything and usually do. Respectful to others but you will quickly lose their respect if you do something untrustworthy towards them and never regain respect. They do not forgive and never forget. -An Insomniac’s Dream

Even my mom agreed that it was so me, except for the “easy to please” and “pushover” parts. I don’t normally believe in these (I normally think horoscopes are a piece of [pardon my French] shit), but I would like to know where this one came from. It is seriously me. Kinda freaky, huh? And I’ll end on that note. Sorry for the short post, but I have to go do chores 😦 Bye!

-Sam