Sigh. We are in the year 2022, and yet there are still some people who can’t keep their transphobic mouths shut. Seriously, it’s tiring to see it all over social media.
ICYMI: Jake Zyrus recently showed off an update to his transition journey as a trans man. In this update, he shared that it took a while for him to be comfortable enough to share a picture to the world.
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“Sa ilang taon na nag-transition ako, masaya ako sa takbo ng buhay ko, pero lagi parin akong nai-insecure sa katawan ko. Sa wakas, komportable [na ako] sa nakikita ko […] Para ito sa mga kapwa ko transgender. Kung naghahanap kayo ng sign o confidence para ipakita at maging proud sa kung sino ka, tara sasabayan kita. Para sayo to,” the singer wrote on his Instagram post.
(In the many years that I transitioned, I was happy with the pace at which my life was going, but I still always get insecure of my body. Finally, I’m now comfortable with what I see… This is for my fellow transgenders. If you’re looking for a sign or for confidence to show and be proud of who you are, let’s go, I’ll do it with you. This is for you.)
Zyrus’ post showing his transition journey gained numerous supportive comments from his fans, fellow LGBTQIA+ members, and celebrity friends. Indeed, there’s nothing more heartwarming than to see someone who has been so afraid to show their true selves off to the world, to finally share their heart and thoughts out there.
And yet at the same time, there are still those unaccepting and intolerant of anything transgender-related who choose to invalidate their feelings and find their stories of coming out laughable. Sad enough to say that this behavior isn’t just seen among the heterosexual straights, but also in the LGBTQIA+ community.
The number of people laughing at Jake Zyrus’s body proves that Philippines isn’t safe for LGBTs. It’s always about him being a transman rather than his singing ability. People cherry picks who they support and trans people are left to be the laughingstock. #translivesmatter 🏳️⚧️ pic.twitter.com/JbLbStFRfs
— im gab i draw (@gabdrawcena) February 19, 2022
if you find jake zyrus' transition photos funny, you're disgusting and i hate you.
— kim #LeniKiko2022 (@chimkemm) February 19, 2022
To this day, even with the myriad of information and educational materials on the topic of sexual identities and respect for the LGBTQIA+ community, people continue to dead-name and misgender people like Jake Zyrus.
One reason could be their deep-rooted Catholic faith, which vehemently denounces the LGBTQIA+ community and their identities but would rather turn away from an issue that actually harms the family. The other could be due to their close-mindedness and inability to understand that this is a reality that a group of people face.
Either way, both reasons reflect how the Philippines isn’t an LGBTQIA+ friendly country. The stereotype of gay people being used for comedic purposes has never left the mentality of most Filipinos, and frankly, that is sad to see in this time and age.
The way our society treat these people can be appalling and at the same time disheartening. Jake Zyrus’ and every trans person’s story and transition journeys are in no way laughable and comedic. It is their way of finally accepting who they are, and a way to connect with others who are still afraid of being true to themselves.
Self-acceptance is already a hard thing to do in a society where people judge others by their appearance, how else will they be able to accept themselves if people invalidate them in every way that they can?
It’s time for people to realize that every person’s journey to self-acceptance is unique to only themselves. If you can’t be happy about someone finally opening up and being confident in their own skin, then better keep your mouth shut and your twisted thoughts to yourself. No one wants to hear them, and neither would you if you were in that situation.
And just like what Catriona Gray said in a recent livestream, which can be said in almost every situation, “derogatory terms, harsh critique, and unkind words are better left unsaid.”
Better yet, listen to Jake Zyrus himself:
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