Saturday, July 2, 2016

Transgender and the Brexit - how are they connected?

This is one of those times where I have to discuss politics and how it intersects with my life as a transgender person.  Yes, it feels strange talking about the "Brexit" while living in the United States, but there is a connection - and something for all of us to be aware of....

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This morning, my niece and I had a texting conversation while I was on the train to work.  Her beau lives in London and is directly affected by the "Brexit" vote.  Her plans were to visit him this July, stay with him for 6 months, and decide whether she was going to move in with him permanently.  The following is the text of our chat.

Niece: Idk if you saw the referendum results.....pardon my language but what the f 7:35 AM

Me: I did. They have fd all of us, and we didn't get kissed. 6:37 AM
Me: Sad thing...the same forces propelling the Trump candidacy propelled brexit. 7:36 AM
Niece: That's exactly how I feel and what I'm afraid of. Now it's just been shown that this it’s an acceptable thing to give into fear and xenophobia 7:38 AM
Me: It is more than that. We are in the middle of a second industrial revolution, and the elites do not know how to deal with a displaced workforce. 7:40 AM
Me: They risk the same instability that propelled the world into ww1. 7:41 AM
Niece: Very true, there is so much more to it 7:41 AM
Me: You and your Beau may need to rethink where you live. If you work things out and this relationship becomes permanent, consider Australia.... 7:43 AM
Niece: Yeah he already said something last night. Parts of his family might have to leave the uk, so after my stay he's looking to move 7:44 AM
Me: The traditional major powers are dying, and one may need to be as far away as possible. 7:44 AM
Niece: Honestly I'm incredibly nervous about the shift of the world bc it will not be a smooth one 7:45 AM
Me: No. They never are. You are young enough to build a new life anywhere. I'm not. 7:46 AM
Niece: That's terribly disheartening :/ 7:48 AM
Me: I know. Read that book about Germany. Things change for the worse very quickly. 7:49 AM
Niece: I'll head over to the library today 7:50 AM
Me: People who think they are safe will not be. 7:50 AM
Me: I'm in a class of people who are not safe - the political undesirables. 7:50 AM
Niece: Bc you're liberal? 7:51 AM
Niece: And out spoken 7:51 AM
Me: No. Because I'm outspoken... and something else I don't share with family. Will share with you one day. I'm straight as an arrow, but I hang out with polyamorous friends. And that's the tip of the iceberg. 7:53 AM
Niece: Oh okay, well you know being you is 100% okay with me, we're all just trying to live 7:55 AM
Me: I know. And that's why I'll feel safe in telling you things that I don't want your dad and mom to know yet. 7:56 AM
Niece: I get that. Thank you, I appreciate your trust 7:57 AM
Me: But I'll ask you to promise not to tell until I'm ready. 7:57 AM
Niece: Of course. It's none of my business to say anything 7:58 AM
Me: Thanks 7:58 AM
Me: Grandpa will never be told. I love my dad to death, but he is part of the problem. Wants to restore a past that is forever gone. 8:00 AM
Niece: It's a sad truth about him and many others 8:00 AM
Me: I know. The 1950s were good to him. But today's problems were sown then. 8:02 AM
Me: Underfunded social security. Expansion of road network without a dedicated maintenance fund. Etc.. no long term thinking. 8:03 AM
Niece: I'm really glad I can talk to you about these things. I don't always understand everything that's going on but I know ans trust your opinions bc you are well thought out & researched. 8:04 AM
Me: My thoughts evolve quickly. It may be why I've survived. 8:05 AM
Niece: Just got to say, I love you 8:06 AM
Me: Same here. You are a kindred spirit. You see what others have in their blind spots. 8:07 AM
Niece: Thank you :) 8:08 AM
Me: We are a danger to people in power, as we March to our own tunes. 8:08 AM
Me: We don't feel helpless, but realize our actions can help us survive and prosper. 8:09 AM
Me: And we don't act out of fear. Doesn't mean we don't fear. Just means we think before acting. 8:10 AM
Niece: This is all very true 8:11 AM
Me: That's why I thought you going to Britain was a good thing. Now, it may only be a first stop. 8:12 AM
Niece: It does appear that way, time will tell what's to become 8:12 AM
Me: Keep an eye out on the Jews. They are society's canary in the coal mine. 8:13 AM
Me: If they start getting mistreated, it's time to leave 8:13 AM
Niece: Yikes, I'll keep that in mind 8:14 AM
Me: Yup. That's why reading up on the early days of the Nazis is so important. 8:15 AM
Me: Make sure you have portable skills 8:16 AM
Niece: I feel like I dont 8:16 AM
Me: This is the time to find some. 8:16 AM
Niece: It certainly is 8:17 AM
Niece: I just have to find a focus 8:17 AM
Me: If you like computers, I know a place that does a 3 month boot camp for those who want a quick saleable skill. I get their emails. 8:19 AM
Me: But that's only a start. You need a "connecting" skill that doesn't depend on any one technology. 8:20 AM 
Me: My train is about to go into a tunnel...  Take care and see you soon.. 8:21 AM 

As you can see, we get along well.  But I haven't yet told her directly that I am transgender.  But I'm leaning towards doing so before she leaves for Britain.  She now knows that Britain may not be as safe a place as it once was, and if the S**T hits the fan, she will need to get out quickly if the anti-immigrant feeling affects American ex-pats.

America is subject to the same forces, and our "Angry White Men" are voting for Trump.   I am very concerned about this trend.  As much as I don't like Hillary, I hate Trump ten times more.  Let's hope our voters don't go as nuts as those in Great Britain.  I'd hate to have to consider leaving because of the risk of the political system collapsing, and looking for scapegoats like us to blame for its problems....

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