Foggy glasses, no heart? Yeah, that’s how I feel about actor/director Peter Berg right now. You see, while most of us are cheering Caitlyn Jenner’s ESPY awards speech, and the bravery she’s displayed coming out, some people aren’t too happy about it. While it’s sadly predictable that not everyone is going to be immediately accepting, or even care about what she and other transgender people go through, there is some part of me that hopes those who don’t will at least keep it to themselves. Call me naive — go ahead — but I want to believe in the human race.
It’s bad enough when you let hatred fill your heart, and it spews out for all to see, but when your inability to see people as people clouds your brain to the point where you’re promoting stupidity, don’t expect us not to point it out. This morning, Berg posted this transphobic meme to his Instagram page:
I won’t even start in on how despicable it is to try to compare what either person has been through (the soldier on the left is retired Colonel Gregory D. Gadson); rather, I’d just like to point out Berg’s ignorance. Courage isn’t something only a soldier defending his country can possess, and bravery isn’t only necessary for wartime battle. Courage is facing yourself in a mirror and knowing you’re finished pretending to be someone else. Courage is a kid coming to her parents and telling them something she knows may change her life — and their lives — forever. Courage is facing your fear. Courage is saying “No.” Courage is taking responsibility, and accepting consequences. Courage is telling your spouse you have to stop living a lie. Courage is publicly outing yourself as homosexual, bisexual, asexual, a man, a woman, genderfluid…knowing you will be subjected to horrible, bigoted criticism, bullying, abuse, threats, and hatred. Courage is coming forward to be yourself, knowing there are people who would harm you, mentally and physically — who would beat you to death for being different. Courage is finding the strength to continue living when your anguish or fear tells you to swallow a bottle of pills, or to hang yourself. Courage is the person on the other end of the phone who doesn’t know what to say to that kid who’s ready to end it, and just doesn’t give up until he’s safe. Courage is facing the truth instead of running or hiding from it. And you sir, Peter Berg, do not understand one thing about courage. Because that thing you posted only shows the world how afraid you are of someone being different than you, and you clearly do not possess the courage to face your fear — to disassemble it, and break it down into tiny pieces of nothingness, and blow it away like a handful of sand.