I have always really enjoyed superheroes ever since I was a kid. There was always something about superheroes that always really appealed to me. As I got older and I started cross dressing, I guess somewhere deep inside I always thought it was cool that they could be totally ordinary people and then all of sudden they could change into these really flamboyant, colorful costumes and nobody laughed or made fun of them, but they actually cheered when they came around. And for the heroes themselves, well, they got to be their real selves. I have only felt like that a few times in my life, like I was really, my real self. And that is an amazing feeling. It is just simply a beautiful feeling. It is one that I am trying to get the courage to feel more often, but it can be scary in the world when you feel so small and weak and helpless sometimes. But I know that brave people do things even when they are scared. They do it despite the fear because that is what’s right. And I want to be like that.
I think this was one of the reasons that I always really liked the X-men, because they were always fighting for humanity even though humanity hated them just for being the way they were. Humanity hated them not because they chose to be superheroes, but because of the very fact that they were born mutants. I think a lot of people can relate to this. When Stan Lee first created the X-men he wanted to mirror aspects of the Civil Rights movement. Charles Xavier is set up as a Martin Luther King Jr. figure, even their dreams our similar. While Magneto was very much a reference to Malcolm X with his “by any means necessary” view of gaining rights for African Americans. I think this is part of what makes the X-men so perfect. They can be something that anybody can relate to. They can be a stand in for homosexuals, queers, people of any given race, the disenfranchised, the marginalized. The X-men are really universal as far as superheroes go.
I mean, Superman came from a distant planet, Spider-man was bitten by a radioactive spider, and Batman… well you gotta have a certain criteria to become Batman, but a mutant, just by some genetic quark you could be born a mutant. And there is some savage bent appeal to the fact that in a physical sense you are more powerful than your oppressors, but there is also a sadness that even with all your power you are still hated and feared by the majority of the population. I think a lot of us can understand what that feels like.
I really wish, that I could be me all the time. I really wish I didn’t ever have to hide. I wish that I didn’t have to be scared. But I am hopeful for the future. I don’t believe the world can change, but I believe that people can change. And the best weapon their is to combat ignorance is wisdom. Maybe if we can teach people why we are the way we are, then they won’t need to be afraid of it. They won’t need to hate us. I want to be brave. I want other people to be brave too. It takes a brave person to let go of their hate. It takes a brave person to embrace what they don’t understand. Can’t we all just agree to stop being afraid and start being brave? Wouldn’t the world be so much better? Wouldn’t it be so much more interesting?
I am holding out for that world.
I hope you are too.