I'm experiencing what has become the new normal in my world. I work during the week. I drive home to Charleston on Friday and back on Sunday. My job is frustrating, mundane, and at times I just want to chuck it but I'm paid too well to be that rash. So - I'm at work by 7:30 and I leave by 5. The dogs and I go for a nice walk along 4-mile creek most evenings. My ongoing efforts to get to the gym are usually sidetracked by other things that pop into my schedule.
My heart is in a good place. I'm healthy. I'm generally happy. All things considered, this would be a pretty good normal for some extended period of time. I'm just enjoying it while it lasts, because it will change.
My screensaver at work is a picture of my dogs. It was taken while getting gas during one of our cross-country drives. It will be the photo that I always remember them by:
I've been thinking of the past lately. Not in a bad way, and nothing specific. Last night I was struck by memories of running along the Canal on evenings like that when I lived near Rochester. Those are pleasant memories...
Speaking of Rochester, a couple of radio morning show morons there went on an ignorant rant about transpeople earlier this week. The city just announced that they will include trans wellness benefits (including SRS) to employees as part of their benefits. This was enough to set these two yahoos off (if you want to listen to it - it's at the bottom of this blog post).
There was a time when this kind of thing happened quite often, and it passed without repercussion. We were easy targets - defenseless, really - for any buffoon who wanted to poke fun at someone. The fact that allowing this kind of degrading, insensitive, hostile talk would be unthinkable in other contexts and is a form of bullying seemed to pass without a second thought to most.
Times have changed. We have a voice now - not just ourselves but our allies and others who recognize us for who and what we are, not for the silly outdated stereotypes that these kinds of morons would reduce us to. Whether they really believe what they say, or it's an on-air persona, is irrelevant. Whether they believe it or not is irrelevant. What IS relevant is using a broadcasting platform to spread that kind of hate without any kind of accountability.
The good news is that there was an immediate, loud, national outcry and these fools have been suspended. Unfortunately, all too often it's just a way to placate the outcry and they're back doing the same stuff as soon as things die down. That simply sends a message that you can get away with this stuff with a simple slap on the wrist. I hope this outcome is different.
Anyway - bravo to the station for acting so quickly. My question - now what? Is this a teaching moment? Is there something positive that can come from this? I believe there is, and I hope they move in that direction.
As most here may know, I lived in the Rochester area for nearly 15 years. It's the closest to a "home" I've had in my adult life. Our first house is there. My son was born and raised there. I was included in a big story on transpeople that they published in the local paper. I was a guest on the Brother Wease Morning Circus radio show back when he was the biggest morning personality in the area. I've spoken there a handful of times since transition. My brother and sister continue to live there. My connection to the area is a lifelong one, and I'm glad to see that it steps up when needed.
We're not defenseless anymore.
For anyone who cares - I'm going to take the test to get my Motorcycle learner's permit today. I have no idea whether or not I'll be comfortable on a bike that has no pedals. But I'm gonna find out. :)