Jan 10, 2013

You’ve got mail!

You’ve got mail!
by Lulu 

Imagine you receive a postal notice at home telling you that a parcel is waiting for you at the post office.  Then you go to the post office and they tell you that the name (and implied gender) on the parcel doesn’t match the name on your ID card so they can’t actually give it to you.  You could, if you want, have it delivered by courier though, at an extra charge of €3.50. 
This, in reality, appears as just a minor inconvenience compared to the much greater problems faced by transgendered persons in Malta but I decided to share this episode because it actually recently happened, and was caused when I sent a package to a friend.  I did not anticipate that such a simple gesture could be such a nuisance and cause such a disruption to their daily life.
It actually really made me think about the privileges I have as a cis-gendered* person living in a society which automatically provides ‘us’ with privileges which it denies transgendered persons. 
This acknowledgement of my privileges was, in some sense, my new year resolution… perhaps more of an exercise where I sat down and went through a list of areas where I’m privileged.  You could do it too, thinking in terms of race, gender, age, class.  It’s a tough exercise but it ultimately allows you to see things in a different light.  My acknowledgement of my privilege also means I’ve taken a step toward identifying areas which I could possibly address as a queer student activist, but it's only a small step and I'm sure I'm still blind to several problems.
*cis-gendered: A person who was assigned a certain gender at birth, identifies as that gender and is seen by other people as belonging to that gender.

On another note, don’t forget to contact us if you’re interested in a youth in action exchange we have organized together with Accept in Romania and a bunch of other LGBT organisations from Europe.  The exchange will focus on informal education and we will be sending 5 participants up from our end!

This article is part of our blog updates which started last month (with Paul's take on xmas), every month one of the exec members takes over and contributes their take on something lgbtqqi related. Lulu has been involved with We Are from the very start, is current president of the organisation, and shall be contributing posts in January.
Next month: Gaby