So this is the end. I remember ever since I was a young freshman working at The Stanford Daily as a graphics editor, I dreamed of writing a column. And as I approach my last days at Stanford, I’ve finally fulfilled this dream. It’s a bit surreal.
I have recently come to this jarring realization — I don’t know any Asian transmen or very many transmen of color. I have several transgender friends at Stanford — we are a tight-knit community. They are people whom I treasure and who I know care for me. I have also reached out to other transgender communities in the area. But in my adventures both inside and outside of the Stanford bubble, I haven’t met any Asian transmen. And as I live in an area that has a large Asian population, it’s really strange.
I have had a fraught relationship with religion. As a queer person, I’ve always felt that I had to choose one or the other, that either I could be religious or queer. I could never be both.
I loved reading as a kid. The English major within me is a bit ashamed to say this, but my favorite books are still the books I read from when I was 11 or 12. There’s something really magical about that love of reading as a child, when you did it for the sake of doing it, when there were no papers to write or no class discussion to prepare for. Those were the days before I was trained to critically deconstruct everything I read, and I could completely lose myself in the narrative and the characters. I miss those days.
I could talk about what I found problematic with what went on in the Faculty Senate meeting, about how I felt the vote was rushed, that I felt that the Faculty Senate wasn’t educated enough (and they admitted it, too). I could criticize all of the shady deals that went on, like the subtle change to the nondiscrimination clause that added the word “unlawful” such that it no longer tolerated just “discrimination” but “unlawful” discrimination (which brings up the question of what counts as “lawful” discrimination). But honestly, that’s a conversation that I’m too emotionally exhausted to engage in right now.
Recently, an ad hoc committee consisting of Stanford students and faculty was formed in order to research the merits of the return of ROTC to campus. Last week this committee released a statement supporting the return of ROTC. Section 5.1 of the statement specifically addresses the argument of ROTC’s violation of the nondiscrimination policy.
The past Friday was Day of Silence, a nationwide movement where high school and college students across the country remain silent for the entire day in order to make people aware of the bullying of LGBT youth. I have participated in Day of Silence every year I have been at Stanford. It is an important day for me, every year. Every Day of Silence reminds me of where I come from.
I really hesitated about going back into politics in my column, as I’m not usually one to impose my political beliefs on others. But I had some major problems with what went on during elections, particularly with the issues surrounding ROTC.