Mak­ing the big move

Si­mon Wil­liamson lives with his fed­er­ally-rec­og­nized spouse in the wild yon­der of New­ton County. Fol­low him on Twit­ter at @si­mon­willo.

GA Voice - - OUTSPOKEN - By Si­mon Wil­liamson

My hus­band and I have just moved to Athens, which means we’ve traded in ru­ral near-mid­dle Ge­or­gia for the home of the B-52’s, which, since they had Ru­Paul in a mu­sic video, are among my fa­vorite per­form­ers of whom I know one song (oth­ers be­ing A-Ha, Frankie Goes to Hol­ly­wood and Lam­b­chop the pup­pet).

This means change for us, as we no longer need to be as para­noid about be­ing our­selves in our own com­mu­nity. Did you hear about the county com­mis­sioner who ut­tered a racial ep­i­thet at a woman who dared in­sult the Amer­i­can flag, and then lied about it, and then re­fused to apol­o­gize, and then re­al­ized what a fore­skin he was? He was ours.

The largest Jodi Hice sign I saw in all of 2014 was on our street. Con­fed­er­ate Flag Day was cel­e­brated with the gusto of a Vic­tory Over The War On Christ­mas.

Luck­ily, our neigh­bors, whom we avoided like Hil­lary Clin­ton does re­porters, kept their dis­tance, even though we are in the wellestab­lished process of tak­ing away all their re­li­gious free­dom and guns with our for­eign­born White House Is­lamo-Com­mu­nist.

Much like Leonardo DiCaprio still has to write him­self an Os­car ac­cep­tance speech, we had to be pre­pared to get our straight face on at any time, even though we never re­ally had to use that tal­ent.

This, along with my and my hus­band’s 6-foot Cau­casian frames, his mus­cles, my gut­tural for­eign ac­cent, and the se­ri­ous­ness with which we take self-preser­va­tion, kept us out of trou­ble. While I would love to tell you that we gave no fig for the po­ten­tial big­ots out in the wilder­ness, ob­vi­ously we did.

Luck­ily, be­cause of who we are, the fact that we’re the G in our ab­bre­vi­a­tion, the fact that we’re white, and the fact that we have no com­mu­nity out of which to be thrown, means we have it eas­ier than oth­ers. Cur­rently, we’re the most so­cially ac­cept­able of the non­tra­di­tional folks.

There are many peo­ple in the LGBT+ com­mu­nity who don’t get that. The mur­der and sui­cide rate of our trans­gen­der friends and fam­ily is stun­ning in its grotesque scope, es­pe­cially for black and brown trans­gen­der women. Even in cities that are sup­posed to be less dan­ger­ous for us. So­ci­ety’s un-em­brac­ing at­ti­tude to­ward any male-ish body that ex­hibits fem­i­nine qual­i­ties, from gen­tle school­boys all the way to adult trans­gen­der women, re­sults in death at an un­ac­cept­ably high rate, and, fail­ing that, a life of prej­u­dice.

Break­ing gen­der stereo­types has long been a core value of the LGBT+ move­ment, even when we de­cide that as­sim­i­lat­ing is eas­ier than a full sex­ual revo­lu­tion

But, like the Hu­man Rights Cam­paign, we found it eas­ier not to rock the boat too hard, and to leave be­hind peo­ple who fucked with our mantra of “we’re just like you, love wins.” In the part of the state we just left, as­sim­i­la­tion isn’t just more con­ve­nient. In many re­spects it is a sur­vival tech­nique.

Although some­times we pre­tend so that you won’t hurt us, many of us are not “just like you.” We just act like it when we’re OTP.

“Luck­ily, be­cause of who we are, the fact that we’re the G in our ab­bre­vi­a­tion, the fact that we’re white, and the fact that we have no com­mu­nity out of which to be thrown, means we have it eas­ier than oth­ers. Cur­rently, we’re the most so­cially ac­cept­able of the non­tra­di­tional folks.”

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