Thursday, January 13, 2011
What's Become of This World?
I was born and raised in New England. I am now going to university here. I have spent three semesters here, but I have a semester’s worth of extra credits due to AP credits and a class I took over the summer. I try to keep up with social justice in the world, as that is one of my passions. I try to vote for everyone’s rights. But I’m mostly interested in my studies. I have a goal of becoming a professor in linguistics and then continuing to study different fields. On my current list: History, Physics, Psychology, and Math. I really, really love learning. So I have always intended to strive for a full, four-year undergraduateship if I can manage the cost. I have confidence that I can manage the cost.
But recently I’ve had an odd feeling about staying for 4 years. I wasn’t quite sure why. But last week, when class registration was happening, I became super-insistent that I arrange my schedule to get the most in in the fastest time possible without overstressing myself. I suddenly needed to be able to graduate in December 2012. And I realized why. I was feeling unsafe in this country.
In order to let y’all know exactly where I stand, I’ll give a comprehensive list of my various identity bits. I am male, socialized female, transsexual, white, temporarily able-bodied, heavily reliant on contacts and sunglasses, ambisexualish, dignosed with anxiety, OCD, and depression, universist, American by birth, Anglophile by persuasion, French-Canadien by ethnicity, raised middle class, family-less, poor by circumstance, fat, pro-life, pro-choice, womanist, ally, contrary, pacifist, and, above all, a linguist.
But what I know is important to my identity and what bits of my identity is important to others are very, very different. And I am afraid of the way this country is headed. I am not a proud American. And with how this shit has been going, I don’t want to be American anymore. People go on and on about how I’m ungrateful about my rights. I am not ungrateful for them, but I can’t help but look to other countries and see better rights in some of them.
And I’m afraid. I see Roe vs. Wade being chipped away at. I would not want to face the choices that women with unplanned pregnancies have to. I see the pain and horror that others go through. I have gone through some of those horrors myself. I do not want to be alarmist, but I feel like Martin Niemöller in his quote:
“When they came for the Jews, I did nothing, for I am not a Jew. When they came for the Socialists, I did nothing, for I am not a Socialist. When they came for the labor leaders, the homosexuals, the gypsies, I did nothing, for I am none of these, and when they came for me, I was alone, there was no one to stand up for me.”
I feel the need to stand up for others, but at the same time, I am unsafe because I am in danger. I feel like I fit into the metaphoric categories of Jews, Socialists, or Roma. Again, I don’t want to be alarmist, but I felt threatened enough that I changed my schedule so that I could graduate and move on in a new country before the new set of elected officials come to power if it came down to that.
What’s become of the world?