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Before You Grab Your Pitch Fork, Please Understand That I’m Adapting To A More Sensitive World, Just Like You

"... I have to walk on egg shells and dilute how I feel to correlate with how they might take it."

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What a time to be alive, when a simple comment can cause an uproar or a Black Twitter drag. 

I remember being a freshman in high school with my first cell phone that could only dial and text. There was no camera and definitely no internet on the device. When I wanted to get all the juice about celebrity news, I had to wait for Entertainment Tonight or stay up late waiting for MTV news. I was blinded from the intense influence of social media. Getting the scoop on who was wearing what, who was "acting gay" or coming out and who wasn't — I had no access to these things throughout the day. It was out of sight, out of mind. But that didn't mean these things weren't happening around me, of course. 

Recently, my cousin, aunt and I had a discussion about religion. My cousin's argument was that we all worship something, whether it's looked at as good or bad. He went on to express the power of your mind and teaching to condition you to believe something that others may not agree with. The men who hijacked four planes during September 11 believed in their mental that killing Americans and, furthermore, dying for that specific cause, was a way of praising Allah. In comparison to people who praise God, we give to those in need, speak the gospel and worship within a sanctuary. We do this all because it's something we were taught to believe in. So, how do you judge these habits, behaviors and overall belief systems?

I use the expression "walking on egg shells" due to the heightened-sensitivity in America. I totally get "the why," but I can't seem to grasp "the how." How can you prematurely accuse an individual by what they said, not truly knowing  the intent behind it? How many times have you told someone you never want to speak to them again, or f**k you, or anything that you knew in that moment would hurt them? Did you mean what you said or were you just caught up in the midst of your feelings? See, there's an intent to harm someone through words in that moment, although your character may still have good intentions. Funny how that works.

I'm caught between a rock and a hard place with the argument of sensitivity. As an African American woman, I am fully aware of how we as a people are profiled, mishandled and undermined. I get it. In regards to homosexuality, I have been recently semi-dragged for making a comment with no ill intent, just an observation.

A story about twin girls, transitioning into men caught my eye. Not because of the headline itself, but because the pictured two men attached to the story looked nothing like women. I commented under the story stating, "Wow, they look just like men. I would have never known if I hadn't read the title about their transformation." In my mind, it was a compliment. To the person who commented under my comment, it obviously wasn't. They responded by saying, "They don't just look like men, they are men." 

Although I wasn't approaching this situation with ill intent of not accepting a transgender person, I was accused of just that. Now, I'm offended for being corrected on my thoughts. Maybe I could have said it in a different way, but the point is, because I'm not transgender and perceived as a silly heterosexual that just doesn't understand, I have to walk on egg shells and dilute how I feel to correlate with how they might take it. Again, I get it, but it's a lot. 

Surfing within this community of overrated information, racial profiling and the acceptance of another's sexuality is mentally tiresome. The bigger picture is this: we are all adapting to what myself and others would call a new wave of social influence, so before you grab the pitch fork, please get to the root of intention. It's only fair.

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