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8 19

Many people are simply ignorant--and this is not intended as an insult, but just an observation. Some might be smart in their field or occupation, but they are largely ignorant of history and social issues.

This was confirmed for me again today. I was in Aldi putting my purchases in a bag. A man, about my age (69) was standing next to me doing the same. He wore a hat proclaiming he was Vietnam vet. I said to him, "I protested the war, but didn't denigrate soldiers.' He replied, "We didn't want to be there and didn't like the war either."

He then went on to say that he thought the war was the beginning of a decline for the USA and that it that decline led us to where we are now. No argument from me. But then, he said, "Just look at these trans people--they're everywhere, wanting to take over. They weren't around when we were --did you ever know any trans people years ago?"

He made mistakes:

, that I would agree with him about the 'degeneracy' of trans people. (This is often the case--people assume that I agree with issues such as this or that I am Xtian.)

, that, somehow, trans folks just popped in the last few years.

I told him that I had no problem with trans people; my problems are with people who abuse/kill children and some other sundry issues.

Then, I told him that I was an English teacher and a student of history and that trans people have always been around.

He looked surprised and just then, his wife walked , looking at me in an unfriendly manner. I think she thought I was hitting on her husband.

I left the store thinking about the past, how Rome was highly homoerotic and yet, conquered many lands. I thought about Oscar Wilde being imprisoned for being gay and how there is overwhelming evidence that Alexander the Great was bisexual. Socrates wasn't put to death for "corrupting" his students by diddling them, but disagreeing with the state and for impiety.

The Preacher in Ecclesiastics was right when he said, "There is nothing new under the sun." Being gay or trans is not new, nor is homophobia. Children have been abused since time immemorial; women have been raped for as long. There is nothing new about murder, invading other lands, or wars.

Ignorance has been around from time immemorial, too, but it used to be that many/most people were ignorant because they were denied getting an education or did not have access to news.

Now, we do have access to education and news, or at least the USA has both. People choose to remain ignorant.

And that is why I have become a misanthrope.

Gwendolyn2018 8 Apr 1
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8 comments

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1

Ignorance, or intolerance borne of fear?

I infer from what you say that he is fearful of people who do not subscribe to his heterosexual view of "how the world should work", which fear prevents him learning about cultures other than his own. I could be completely wrong, of course.

Both!

1

Everyone is ignorant of a great many things. A person can't be expected to know everything. The problem frequently is that far too many seem utterly unaware of their ignorance and some even seem almost willfully happy to be ignorant. People seem to close their minds to new facts and ideas and any challenge to their world view is met with anger and they simply dig in deeper to their pit of ignorance.

I totally agree about everyone being ignorant in some degree. I can edit/grade a paper and find every error; I can also analyze works of literature. However, I cannot do above basic math and I know nothing about rocket science.

I see the issue with closeminded people is that they are happy to remain ignorant. Some people still believe that gays are made, not born, and not matter how much evidence is given to the contrary, they CHOOSE to remain ignorant. The difference between me not knowing rocket science and choosing not to learn about is that I hurt no one, but choosing to remain ignorant about the LBGT community can cause damage to others.

1

I have a perfect solution to situations like that. I don't talk to strangers unless they address me first. Never, besides saying hello if I inadvertantly make eye contact.

I like to talk to strangers--most times, we discuss trivial issues and not issues such as these. When they go "there," the conversation is over. I was in McD's one time when a trans person was having lunch with a friend. The guy at the table leaned over and said to me, sotto voce, "That person doesn't know if he is a man or woman" in a derisive tone. I responded, "It is no concern of mine--she is not hurting anyone. Why should you care?"

He was surprised and shut up.

@Gwendolyn2018 I try not to engage strangers but they seem to gravitate to me. I don't like to be rude so I usually smile and keep moving.

@barjoe I added to my post to you!

I have been told by several people that I am "approachable" because I smile a lot. However, wearing a mask for the last two years has affected that somewhat. I get hit on less by old farts. I also initiate conversations, but I pick and choose to whom I speak. Sometimes, they engage more than I want or expect. For example, I just wanted to thank the guy at Aldi for serving--nothing more, nothing less. He chose to go elsewhere.

1

There is a gay person in about every family-some are out and some not. When I was in 7th grade I had a teacher all the girls in class had a crush on. He never had a girlfriend but was good friends with a female teacher.
Years later my mom was teaching at the same school. She told me he was gay. I suspected that anyway but since mom was gay she knew him. None of the girls in class had a clue.

I had a crush--a serious crush--on a girl when I was in fifth grade. The crush was like the ones I had for boys, and it was confusing. I never said anything about it to anyone as I was sure that it was not acceptable. At that point, I had no clue that same sex attractions were common. We used to talk about "queers" (if you wore yellow on Tuesday or Thursday, you were queer), but we had no idea what that meant. In retrospect, I am not sure if my much detested 7th. grade teacher was gay or a pedophile.

3

Misinformation, malinformation, and just plain lies may be the pestilence that destroys civilization.

Indeed.

2

You can educate the ignorant, but you can't do anything for the stupid.

I used to say that, but you can't educate the ignorant who do not know that they are ignorant.

1

I agree with you fully, Gwen. Laughing at some of this because the man you talked to thought something new that he did not like was going on. What he missed is that today more things are talked about and maybe were yet hushed up earlier in his time. I'm also feeling that I'm a misanthrope. I'm getting to where I do not like people. Often they tell me what I just told them and it mystifies me totally.

He thought very much that trans people are a sign of a degenerating society. I talk to people in stores, but I don't want to be friends with them. My grandkids are better company than the vast majority of adults.

3

Maybe your ignorant vet had read something like this:

In the UK alone, the number of minors undergoing transgender treatment between 2009 and 2017 increased from 97 to 2,519 cases, a 25-fold increase. Within the group, the percentage of girls with gender dysphoria even increased by 4,500 percent.

The phenomenon of adolescents who had no gender disorder in the past suddenly reporting being transgender is also becoming more common. A study published in PLOS (August 16, 2018 [doi.org] links this so-called Rapid Onset Gender Dysphoria to peer pressure and increased use of social media and relevant websites.

While LBGTQ has always been present, we may be seeing increases from social pressure and social media. Increases may also be due to hormone-like chemicals in our foods, either from processing or leaching from containers. Lastly, sexual changes can also come from crowding or the perception of crowding, and possibly elevated pheromone levels.

😟 Just a wee bit of history.
1967: The Sexual Offences Act 1967 stipulated that private sex acts between consenting men over the age of 21 would no longer be a criminal offence in England and Wales, although Scotland did not follow suit until 1980 and Northern Ireland until 1982.

Despite cross-party support for the Act, MPs were hardly lining up to accept homosexuality as a legitimate orientation. "Even those supporting decriminalization called homosexuality 'a disability' and 'a great weight of shame'," says the Huffington Post.

1972: By the early 1970s, "gay rights organizations were springing up locally and nationally," says the Lesbian and Gay Newsmedia Archive. In 1972, upwards of 2,000 gay men and women marched in London's first Pride parade.

1988: Then-Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher introduced an amendment to the Local Government Act 1988 banning state schools from teaching or promoting the "acceptability of homosexuality as a pretended family relationship".

The notorious "Section 28" caused widespread outrage and as the catalyst for a massive surge in gay activism, including the formation of LGBT rights group Stonewall UK. Section 28 was repealed in Scottish law in 2000, and from English, Welsh and Northern Irish law in 2003.

2004: The Civil Partnership Act allowed same-sex couples to enter into same-sex unions with the same rights as married couples.

2014: The Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Act 2013, which recognized same sex marriages, entered into law in England and Wales. Several gay couples were wed at the stroke of midnight on 29 March 2014, when the law officially came into effect.

Scotland legalized gay marriage in December 2014. Gay marriage remains illegal in Northern Ireland.

Just 53 years ago men went to jail for loving the "wrong" person. Then ol' Margaret made even talking about it an issue in state schools. Geez! Ignorance much? The pendulum is just swinging the other way as it's only recently kids can free access information about their sexuality.

He never read a report such as this. He gets his news from the TV. And even though the numbers have increased, we have no clue how many trans people there were in the past. People didn't share info such as that. Again, Wilde, a high profile person, went to jail for being gay.

@racocn8 maybe, and maybe, people are just more open about such issues.

@silverotter11 great strides have been made. Percentagewise, I would wager that there are no more LBGT people today than in the past, but they can be open about it.

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