I woke up early this morning to the news of Caitlyn Jenner – the female re-introduction of Bruce Jenner.
After months of speculation, Diane Sawyer’s interview, coming out clean and recent weeks of preparation, the former US Olympian and ex-daddy of the Kardashian / Jenner reality family officially introduced the world to the new Caitlyn Jenner via Twitter.
I’ve been reading about this news for awhile, as a closeted Kardashian reality show viewer.
Caught clips of the Diane Sawyer interview that Bruce did, to clear the rumours about his sexual transformation, from biologically born a man, to his decision to transition to a woman at the ripe age of 65. Still have yet to catch the full interview, but the snippets I’ve seen here and there gave me a good picture. You can watch them on ABC News website here.
Why would you live a lie like this for most of your life and decide to do this now, post retirement age? Bruce wanted to be true to himself. He’s been lying all his life, he didn’t want this regret to follow him to his grave. He wants to make it right and be who he’s supposed to be.
Then, there was the promotion of the Keeping Up With The Kardashian : About Bruce “special episode”. Silly me to think that E! on Ch 712 on Astro would air it. Momentarily forgot that this is Malaysia and there’s almost no way our Censorship Board would be liberal enough to allow a show about a transgender person coming out. *smacks head*
Thanks to YouTube, however….
Today, aka 1 June 2015 in US time, Bruce Jenner introduced us to her new self as Caitlyn Jenner via Twitter. On his new Twitter account, @Caitlyn_Jenner, a verified account, no less.
In under 4 hours, her official Twitter account reached more than 1 million followers.
Shattering the previous record holder – Barack Obama’s official @POTUS Twitter account.
Caitlyn Jenner’s Vanity Fair Cover Photoshoot
Caitlyn Jenner’s interview with Diane Sawyer was to clear the air and answer any questions on her decision on the transition to a woman.
The Vanity Fair cover with famed photographer, Annie Leibovitz, is to officially introduce the world to her transitioned self as a transgender woman.
Here are (almost) all the pictures of this news worthy, first pictures of Caitlyn Jenner, with an aptly titled #CallMeCaitlyn hashtag going viral all over social media today.
Along with this video featurette.
While I was following the news since the first ever rumour of Bruce’s transition, I have to say, he looks amazing as a woman.
There are, of course, lots of comparison with Jessica Lange. The actress is actually flattered with the news. I have to also agree, there are some similarities. And they’re only 1 year apart in age.
In some shots, Caitlyn Jenner looks a little like Idina Menzel. There’s even comments that she looks better than ex-wife, Kris Jenner. 😛
Still, I have to say, SHE LOOKS AMAZING as a woman!!!
Why is this big news?
It’s big news because…. even for a supposedly liberal country like America, LGBT (Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender) issues are not widely accepted by all.
Recently, transgender Laverne Cox from Orange Is The New Black Netflix series did a cover shoot with Time magazine, in their Time 100 piece as a transgender icon. While the actress was skeptical to appear as the “icon” at first, she changed her mind as this brings to light the struggles and issues and acceptance of the transgender community. Laverne even had nice things to say about Caitlyn Jenner’s cover in her Tumblr blog here.
Slowly, lesbian, gay and bisexual community is getting more acceptance in mainstream media, the transgender community might not have seen much exposure. This is ground-breaking moment.
There are, of course, previously known trans person in the past… But now, more than ever, it’s a topic of open discussion among most Americans, and the sentiment have mostly been positive to these brave few who has chosen to openly discuss their struggles and transition.
My thoughts on LGBT
I wasn’t planning on writing about this.
Amidst all the positive reactions, then I read about Fox News mocking Caitlyn’s revelation.
While I understand, even as a non-American, that Fox is equivalent of an RTM here in Malaysia, with super conservative and old school thinkers, I don’t think it’s right for anyone to be mocking this brave reveal. Even if you disagree, it’s better to just keep your mouth shut. If you can’t say anything nice, don’t say anything at all.
To me, this “coming out” is no biggie for me, personally.
I am a very liberal and accepting person. While I might not claim to be accepting of everything and everyone, I try to understand it from the other person’s point of view.
On this particular subject of transgender transformation, it’s not a big deal to me and I’m super okay with it.
I have a lot of friends of different gender and sexual preferences. LGBT of all spectrum of the acronym. I know a few transgender people personally. Just like what’s been said and justified again and again – it’s not a choice! You’re born into it – sexual preference or gender identity. So, I completely disagree with the conservative stance of thinking you can religiously “counsel” someone out of being gay or transgender. That’s just nonsense to me.
While I understand how some people might disagree with LGBT in general, I don’t understand disgust of the matter in any sense.
Why are you disgusted by an LGBT person?
How is someone’s lifestyle bothering you?
How silly can you be to think that what someone does in the closed confines of their home, or living their everyday life, can affect you or as you claim, “ruin the foundations of the society”?
We’re not talking about pedophiles here. Which somehow is acceptable for the conservative? Remember the news a few weeks back on the Suami Aku Ustaz movie, based on a novel, using religion as an excuse to justify child marriage and pedophila? *tsk*tsk*tsk*
But I digress…
If it makes you uncomfortable to talk or be around an LGBT person, my advise is for you to quietly excuse yourself from the situation / topic / discussion / person. Don’t mock it. Don’t make a bold hissing statement. Don’t say something ignorant. Just excuse yourself.
The conservative would say that Malaysians (nationwide of all races here) does not accept LGBT in any sense. Ie, sodomy is a jail-able sentence, transgender is not a recognisable sex, etc. I feel that we contradict the statement on many occasions. Somehow, we have a feminine male celebrity chef, a world known closeted space visitor, community of Mak nyah make up artists, and perfectly OK with masculine female politicians.
Remember the story awhile back on the 3 arrested mak nyah, transgender bridal make up artist at a wedding in Negeri Sembilan for “cross dressing”?
You know, it’s hypocritical to pick and choose acceptance versus punishment, what we believe in and what we’re against, as and when it suits us.
Perhaps, conservative Malaysia is picking the “If I don’t see it, it’s not happening” approach to things.
Ending on a more positive note…
I think news like this revelation of Caitlyn Jenner in global news from America is good. It opens up a discussion, perhaps among those sitting on the fence. Perhaps among those who are too shy to discuss this openly. Perhaps a healthy debate and discussion among the liberal and the conservative.
Choosing to look at this on a bright note – it’s 2015 folks! Time we open up and be more accepting of different people of all walks of life. Am I right?